London’s macabre past comes to life at the London Dungeons, which is one of the most popular tourist hotspots of the UK’s capital city. Renowned as a clever yet horrific live rendition of Madame Tussauds, the London Dungeon is a “one-stop horror shop”. The 90-minute extraordinary experience brings to life some of the most spine-chilling events of London’s 1000-year-old past. From Anne Boleyn to Guy Fawkes, London’s most infamous residents come to life in this one-of-a-kind combination of live actors, horrifying sets, state-of-the-art special effects, and hair-raising rides.
Spooky recreations of some of London’s unforgettable dark moments await you at the various shows, from the Great Fire of London to the 1666 Black Plague. Meet some of London’s most iconic yet notorious figures, from the rebelling Guy Fawkes to the murderous Jack the Ripper and Sweeney Todd. And if you are interested in some royal drama, then witness Henry VIII’s wrath as you become a part of Anne Boleyn’s legendary trial and execution. Traverse the Thames, head to the Tower of London from a time when it was more than a tourist attraction, and explore the overcrowded streets of mediaeval city as London Dungeons takes you on a time-travelling journey filled with screams and thrills.
The shows at London Dungeons bring alive some of the darkest events of London’s mediaeval history. Indulge in spooky recreations of infamous historical happenings like the Witch Trials, the Black Plague, and the Great Fire of London, and experience the brutal incidents that shook England’s royalty, like the trial and execution of Anne Boleyn.
One of the most popular rides at the London Dungeons is the Drop Dead Drop ride, an exhilarating vertical free-fall ride that marks the end of the 90-minute tour. With a height of 10 metres, the ride plunges you through three storeys of the London Dungeon as you hold on for dear life. With a scare score of 5, which is the maximum for London Dungeons rides, the Drop-Dead Drop is not for the faint-hearted and is an optional ride. A recreation of the Long Drop that was first installed outside the Newgate Prison in 1783, the ride lasts for approximately one minute.
You have been condemned to death by the Jester for conspiring with Anne Boleyn, and are joined by other traitors on her final journey at The Tyrant Boat Ride. Journey through the dark turbulent waters of the Thames to the Tower of London and witness the fury of Henry VIII as you approach the Traitors’ Gate. Relive the iconic execution at the show, which has a scary score of 5. Guests with a minimum height of 1 metre need to be accompanied, and those 1.2 metres tall can ride without supervision. The ride is inaccessible for guests who are unable to walk unaided or cannot climb stairs, are pregnant, or have certain health conditions.
Hear the mysteries surrounding one of London’s most infamous serial killers, Jack the Ripper. The year is 1889, and the landlady of the Ten Bells Pub, Mrs Waldren, has witnessed the crimes and knows a lot about the legendary killer who was never found. This was the pub where the victims of Jack the Ripper enjoyed their last drinks before he brutally murdered them. Yet, whether he is someone from the past or still lurks in the shadows is for you to find out in this show, which has a scary score of 5. Listen to the stories as you enjoy your drinks, but if the lanterns go out, then run and save your lives.
Discover the meaning of fear as you witness the horrors of the 1621 Witch Trials at Curse of the Witch. Walk inside the Newgate Prison of the London Dungeon, where Elizabeth Sawyer, the Witch of Edmonton, awaits her execution. With a scare score of 5, the show is one of the creepiest at the London Dungeon where you get to experience how loud thunder can really get. Convicted of conversing with the Devil, the subdued witch has a dark side lurking within her that promises jump scares like no other. Experience the rage of James I and the horrors of being around a witch as you walk into this thrilling show.
With a scary score of 3, The Plague Doctor at London Dungeons takes you back to the 1665 Black Plague. Experience the grotesque destruction caused by the plague as you walk past muddy alleys and houses with red crosses, rotting human bodies, and black rats. The Pest House awaits you, where you meet other plague-infected Londoners who are locked up here for forty days and forty nights. See if you would have survived the forty-day ritual where people either purged the illness from their bodies or died in the process. The Plague Doctor is dead already, but his assistant is here to help you out, so don’t wait any longer and come along.
Experience the thrills of a trip on a mediaeval lift as you walk into the Descent at the London Dungeons. Hop on and join the Lift Jester, the cheerful resident who would narrate hundreds of years of horrible history as you descend down the dungeon. With a scary score of 2, the lift tumbles down as you hear the cogs and chains grind and the winches strain in this old-world contraption. Live in the world of 1536 as the Jester scares and picks on you, and discovers the one in your group with a criminal nose. Hop off safely at the river docks of Thames after a memorable lift ride.
Your death sentence for conspiring with Anne Boleyn against Henry VIII awaits execution at the hands of the Tower Warden. Head to this London Dungeons show to find out what kind of traitor you are and how you will be executed. The Tower of London was witness to quite a few of the 72,000 victims of Henry VIII, and this recreation of the 1536 Anne Boleyn trial brings the horrid experience to life. Hear your fate being read out by the Tower Warden and discover if your head is perfect for being chopped off or if you are the unlucky one who will get boiled.
Discover what pain and punishment looked like in the 1600s at The Torture Chamber of the London Dungeon. The Torturer, who is the master of the dreaded Chamber, awaits volunteers on whom he could use his infamous tools. Witness the uses of the Pear of Anguish and the Chappy Chopper as this practical-minded craftsman demonstrates his art. This show has a scary score of 3 and is a recreation of the Tower of London of 1605. The Torture Chamber promises to delight and repulse you in equal measure as you learn some spine-chilling tricks from the Torturer.
With a scary score of 2, Escape the Great Fire of London, recreates the September 1666 catastrophe that burnt down the entire city. Step into the bakery of Thomas Farriner on Pudding Lane and meet his assistant, Louis Lou, ready to serve you. Remember to stay away from the ovens, and await the mass destruction and panic that strikes right after the bakery and spreads to the overcrowded streets of London. From burning buns to ravaging fire that engulfs everything, the show brings to life the sheer panic and horrors of the Great Fire that transformed London forever.
Location: The London Dungeon is located at County Hall, Westminster Bridge Road, South Bank, London, SE1, United Kingdom. It is a short walk from the London Eye on the South Bank in London.
Timings: The London Dungeon is open on all days of the week and public holidays except Christmas. The operating hours are from 10 AM to 5 PM, which is subject to changes. It is recommended you confirm the timings when you pre-book your tickets and time slots before your visit.
Best time to visit: The best time to visit the London Dungeon is in the early mornings. The crowds in the early hours are less, so you won’t have to wait in long queues to explore your chosen attractions. You would also be able to enjoy the thrills in more isolated surroundings.