Lacking inspo

20 Best Places To Eat In South Bank and Waterloo, London

These places to eat in London's South Bank really pack a punch - you'll want to visit them all...

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After a day of touring London, you're bound to be hungry and let's be honest, it's not easy finding places to eat that everyone will like.

So, instead of spending hours on end wandering around, looking for the best places to eat in South Bank, give this a quick read and you'll know * exactly * where you want to go.

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1. Skylon

Located on the first floor of the Royal Festival Hall, Skylon is the perfect spot to eat contemporary European food and catch some stunning views of the Thames. This up-scale restaurant can be quite pricey, so if you’re looking to spend less, stop in for a drink in their cocktail lounge instead. This is definitely one of the more luxury hot spots to hit up if you're looking for the best restaurant in South Bank.

Address: Belvedere Rd, Royal Festival Hall, London SE1 8XX

2. Bala Baya

A restaurant that can truly do it all, Bala Baya is a fast-paced pitta kiosk at lunchtime that morphs into a bustling restaurant each evening. Serving Tel Aviv cuisine, designed by chef Eran Tibi, this adventurous venue is based in a Southwark railway arch – nice and close to Southwark station.

Address: Arch 25, Old union yard arches, 229 Union St, London SE1 0LR

3. Florentine Restaurant and Bar

Normally, ‘all day dining and bar’ would ring alarm bells of an all-round mediocre restaurant, but this South Bank restaurant is a proper treat. Take your pick from pasta dishes, pizzas and much more at this simply delightful venue. This is one of the best restaurants in South Bank for the whole fam to enjoy.

Address: 6 Hercules Rd, London SE1 7DU

4. The Ivy

Located at the base of London’s iconic Tower Bridge, this casual brasserie-style South Bank restaurant provides not only delicious food, but spectacular views of the Thames (and Tower Bridge itself). If you fancy giving alfresco dining a chance, there isn’t a better place to do it – The Ivy’s Parisian-style terrace will have you seriously feeling like a main character.

Address: 1 Tower Bridge, London, SE1 2AA

5. OXO Tower Brasserie

Did you fancy grabbing dinner eight-floors above London’s South Bank? Well, we’ve found the spot for you. Oxo Tower’s in-house restaurant, brasserie and bar are the perfect place to head if you want to make an event of dinner. The entire restaurant has excellent views of London, but the terrace (first come, first serve for tables) provides panoramic views of the city.

Address: OXO Tower Brasserie, Barge House Street, London, SE1 9PH

6. Sticky Mango at RSJ

Don’t be alarmed by the discrete exterior of this fresh Southeast Asian restaurant, the understated décor makes it the ideal location for a laid-back lunch or pre/post theatre dinners. Previously known for serving French-style dishes, the restaurant well-and-truly switched things up by introducing their new fresh, lightly spiced Asian menu.

Address: 33 Coin Street London SE1 9NR

7. Sea Containers at the Mondrian London

Serving a seasonal menu of cool and trendy dishes, this Mediterranean-style restaurant is led by the creative mind of Chef Tom Dixon. Oh, and if you feel like classing things up, the restaurant has partnered with champagne house, Laurent-Perrier, to open up a terrace (only during summer months) - you can already imagine those amazing South Bank views.

Address: 20 Upper Ground, London SE1 9PD

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8. Brasserie Blanc

If you hadn’t guessed from the name, this South Bank Restaurant serves up traditional French food amped up by the culinary mastery of Raymond Blanc. This devoted chef is keen on serving ingredients with the best provenance – but we reckon the experience is made by the green and soothing interior of the restaurant. Leafy wallpaper and classic furniture make the spot an uber-relaxing dinner location.

Address: Belvedere Rd, London SE1 8YL

10. Gunpowder

Without a doubt the best South Bank restaurant for home-style, authentic Indian cuisine, Gunpowder serves up innovative and dynamic - but always delicious - dishes. We’d definitely recommend this one as a prime date location – or any group of two for that matter. Their ‘Feast Menu’ is a set menu for two which will have you sampling a variety of treats from the restaurant.

Address: 4 Duchess Walk, London SE1 2RZ

10. Wahaca

Constructed of eight shipping containers connected to the Southbank Centre, this funky Mexican restaurant is somewhat of a London favourite. Delve into the world of authentic Mexican flavours – made even more special by their delectable margaritas and mojitos. If you don’t have enough time to sit in, no problem – the Mexican Street Kitchen truck that you’ll find parked up outside serves takeaway burritos and salads just as delicious as the ones you’ll taste inside.

Address: Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre, Belvedere Rd, London SE1 8XX

11. Tas Pide

Dinner * and * a show?! With ‘pide’ loosely translating to ‘flatbread’, you’ll see homemade flatbreads prepared and cooked right in front of you in the restaurant’s own clay oven. And you won’t be short on choice either, with 20 options containing various vegetarian, seafood and meat toppings. Not in the mood for flatbread? Don’t worry, there are plenty of other traditional Anatolian dishes on offer like mezes, grills and casseroles.

Address: 20-22 New Globe Walk, London SE1 9DR

12. Limin’ Beach Club

Have you ever tried Trinidadian food? We thought not. Get yourself down to the Limin’ Beach Club for tasty cocktails and the perfect opportunity to try traditional Trinidadian cuisine. From curried seabass to masala fries, there are loads of unique and delicious dishes on offer. Oh, and we can’t forget to mention the three outdoor beach spaces – you'll genuinely feel like you’re on a desolate island (but really, you’re a 2-minute walk from the less-than-tropical river Thames).

Address: GV5Q+6W, London SE1 9PP, UK

13. Tatale

This decidedly cool restaurant rolls its eyes at the mediocre chain restaurants which line most London streets. Settle in (amongst scatter cushions galore) and be prepared to have a life changing meal of contemporary Pan-African plates. These dishes are perfect for sharing (not that you’ll want to after that first bite), so it’s a fab South Bank restaurant to bring friends and family.

Address: 66 Great Suffolk Street, London

If you're getting fed up of the busy city life, why not head out on a day out from London by car or train?

14. Seabird

In the market for a super glamorous meal? Well, this classy spot is located on the 14th floor of The Hoxton Hotel – sounds promising, right? And you’ll only be more impressed once you arrive at the restaurant. If the name wasn’t obvious enough, they serve some impressive seafood dishes (think Carlingford oysters and just spectacular lobster). An epic restaurant aaand the perfect opportunity to post pics to your Insta story that’ll have everyone feeling jealous? Are we in heaven?

Address: 40 Blackfriars Road, 14th Floor, South Bank

15. Caravan

Now, from the name of this one, you’re probably not expecting much. But we can promise that this is one of those spots with a little something for everyone. So, no matter how disorganised and ‘I’m just not * that * hungry’ group members are, this one will do the job. It’s also great for big groups – take note for the next time you forget to book (despite being reminded, tut tut tut). Serving breakfast, brunch, small & large plates as well as some delicious sourdough pizzas, this is a fab restaurant to add to your list in South Bank.

Address: 30 Great Guildford Street, London

16. The Understudy

If you just live for the theatre (we get it, honestly), you’ve got to stop by The Understudy. Based in The National Theatre itself, this spot serves delicious dishes from Mumbai Mix’s Indian Street food, Lucky’s hot chicken and BBPS pizzas. Oh, and we can’t forget to mention the extensive selection of draught beers (perfect for a quick round of drinks). There’s normally always room for a walk in, so give it a go if you’re looking for some last-min messy scran. P.S make sure to stop by their terrace during summer months – simply delightful views and comfort food, what else could you want?

Address: Upper Ground, London SE1 9PX

17. Tonkotsu Bankside

A diamond in the rough, you’ll find this South Bank restaurant next to a Pret, in the ground floor of a down-right decrepit office block – but don’t let this put you off. This has to be one of the best ramen spots in the capital, and they have a thrifty lunch menu too. Get yourself a lunch-sized ramen and lunch-sized side for £9.95 - now that’s an offer we cannot deny. Oh, and they have great vegetarian and vegan options too. This is a real hole-in-the-wall kinda place, one of our favourite places to eat in South Bank.

Address: 4 Canvey Street, London

18. The Swan

So, you’ve been walking around London all morning and now group tensions are high ever since you told everyone you’d rather peel your eyeballs than visit another museum. You’re all probably very... Hangry is the word we’d use. Luckily, this perfectly placed pub is great for lunch. Don’t expect a Wetherspoons-type pub either – this bright and breezy spot is perfect to settle in for comforting food amongst London's best landmarks.

Address: 21 New Globe Walk, London

19. Flat Iron Square

This South Bank restaurant is perfect for both lunch and dinner – although, if you try to get your hands on this grub between 3pm and 6pm, you’ll be disappointed to discover they’re shut. From Good Slice’s pizzas to Lil’Watan’s Lebanese food, there are loads of different dishes to try – and they hold tonnes of fun events like Anti-Valentine's Day and showing the Six Nations matches. It's a great casual eating restaurant in South Bank.

Address: 45 Southwark St, London SE1 9HP

20. Southbank Centre Food Market

A whole world of cuisines and cultures are available at this epic market – and fresh produce to take home and create your own masterpieces. Vendors change frequently, but rest-assured that whatever is served up will be delicious with vibrant flavours and a great place to stop by. Keep in mind that this one is only open on Fridays, weekends and bank holidays.

Address: Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London, SE1 8XX

Oh dear, are you on the wrong side of the river? Happens all the time. Luckily we also happened to know the top 10 spots for lunch in the West End, London.

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