Short shorts, lean legs and plenty of fancy dress is what you’re likely to see pounding the streets of London on Sunday 28th April.
That’s right, the London Marathon is almost upon us. If you weren’t brave enough to don your running shoes this year, fear not! There’s plenty of great spots to soak up the atmosphere of the buzzing city and show your support along the way, with a pint firmly in hand. Below are a few of our favourite spots to watch the London Marathon.
This year the start times are as follows:
08:55 – Elite Wheelchair Races
09:00 – World Para Athletics Marathon Championships Ambulant Athletes
09:15 – The Elite Women’s Race
10:00 – The Elite Men’s Race, British Athletics & England Athletics Marathon Championships and Mass Race
The Start: Greenwich
Greenwich is home to the famous Cutty Sark Ship and it’s where the Marathon kicks off. There’s plenty of historic eating and drinking establishments around these parts so if you’re keen to see proceedings right from the beginning then head to one of these. Bear in mind it will be busy (really busy) so get down early!
The Greenwich Union
German-style beers and hearty pub grub is served up in this old Greenwich favourite. Nab a spot on the small front terrace and you’re laughing.
Need some fuel before heading out for your big day? Check out our guide to all the best cheap places to eat in King’s Cross!
Despite its historic name, Richard I offers up modern-style pub grub and trendy craft beers. Newly refurbished, its interiors give a nod to Greenwich’s naval history whilst keeping it light and bright. Great outdoor seating area too, which feels like a friend’s back garden.
Mile 13 and Mile 22
Where those in the know head to watch the race. The route doubles back on itself here so you can catch the runners twice (and feel suitably smug whilst enjoying a nice meal in a comfy seat!)
Prospect of Whitby
London’s oldest riverside pub and one that’s allegedly haunted by famous ghosts (oooh!). Take in the great views of the Thames from here whilst watching others get a sweat on.
Things are getting serious as runners have just over 10 miles to go. Serious contestants are upping their pace whilst the mere mortals are hanging on for dear life! Head to Canary Wharf to catch the proceedings wind their way underneath the glass towers of London’s big corporations.
Transport: Canary Wharf tube or Heron Quays DLR.
Head for Cabot Square to Iberica’s Terraza where you can soak in the atmosphere of the race (and hopefully some sunshine!) whilst enjoying a spot of tapas and a bottle of chilled wine.
Rum & Sugar
This lively bar sits in a former rum warehouse. Its large terrace is the perfect canal-side spot to grab a cocktail and watch the race whizz by.
One of the slightly quieter spots along the way, this is a great place to make sure your support goes a long way!
Cutty Sark Tavern
This three level Georgian pub boasts cracking views of the Thames. If you can bag a window seat, or a table on the cobbled street outside, then you, my friend, are laughing. Take in the vista and let the gentle sound of trainers hitting the street reassure you about your great life decisions.
Visiting London with friends? Have a look at our guide to the best things to do in London as a group.
The runners emerge here from their stint below street level in the Blackfriar’s underpass. Cheer them on as they see daylight again and near the last few miles of the race.
Set on the site of a medieval Dominican friary, the Blackfriar has been refurbished in the Arts and Crafts style with intricate friezes and an impressive marble-topped bar. Choose your tipple from the large selection of guest ales and enjoy on the large terrace.
The end is in sight for London’s weary runners! Give them that final bit of encouragement then head to the alphabetically signposted meet-up points in Horse Guards Road and Horse Guards Parade.
Gordon’s has got a real old world feel about it and a nice outdoor seating area for when the sun shines. Its wine list hops from classic regions of France to South America and Beyond. Grab a cheese platter to accompany and watch in awe the final strides of the marathon.
Can’t make it to the vent but still want to show your support? Make a donation to one of the many worthy charities that marathon runners sponsor during the event here. For more information about how to take part in the marathon click here.