Top 5 Interesting Facts About the River Thames

River Thames

The River Thames is one of London’s most famous additions, but very few of us truly know that much about it. In case you feel like sharing some handy information about this world-famous river during your visit, here’s the most interesting facts you should know all about…

1. The Thames is part of a much longer river

thames lighting

Though it’s the most famous bit, the Thames is actually part of a far larger river – the longest river in England, to be exact. It’s home to thriving wildlife including over 25 different species of fish. The Thames begins in the Cotswolds, before travelling over 200 miles through picturesque towns and countryside before making its way to the city of London. But it doesn’t stop there – the Thames continues all the way to the North Sea! There are 45 different locks along the River Thames, particularly interesting for those wishing to journey along it via boat.

2. The Thames has its own Natural Trail

thames walk

The Thames Path is a unique way to discover the river by foot. Prepare for a long journey, though, as the walking route covers some 184 miles and is therefore certainly not to be accomplished in one day! It’s a gentle walk, suitable for all ages, and some visitors choose to tackle the trail by staying in the delightful towns and villages along the way, or break up their walk by choosing a starting and end point for a more leisurely afternoon stroll while staying at the Park Grand Paddington Court London. The trail winds its way through places like Oxford, Henley and Windsor – some of England’s best-known towns and villages. It’s also Europe’s longest riverside walk.

3. The Thames has its own regatta

The yearly Henley-on-Thames Royal regatta takes place in the 13th century market town of Henley each year. Not only is the regatta itself a lavish affair for guests of 4 star hotels in London to enjoy, but it also takes place over five days in a particularly impressive area filled with fine boutiques and independent stores. There are some 200 races during Henley, making it one of the most popular boating events in the world.

4. The Thames inspires artists and writers

The River Thames has proven inspirational for some of the art world’s most famous masters, including French impressionist Claude Money. It’s easy to see why, as the sheer size of the Thames makes for plenty of variety in landscape as it winds it’s way through the countryside. Writers have also been inspired by this stretch of water, including Wind in the Willows author Kenneth Grahame – so for creatives in need of inspiration staying at the Park Grand Paddington Court London, this could prove just the ticket.

5. The name of the Thames is a mystery

Some say it might be taken from the Sanskrit meaning ‘dark’, given the colour of the water – others suggest perhaps it’s derived from the Roman ‘Tam’, meaning wide.

Interested to find out more? Then check out  this handy map of the River Thames and get exploring!


  • Why is the River Thames so important?

The River Thames is 215 miles long and has been an important trade route throughout its history. Some people believe that the Romans may have been influenced by the Thames when they were choosing where to build London. … It depicts the river, Westminster Bridge and the Houses of Parliament on a spring day. Read more

  • Is the Thames river polluted?

River Thames is the cleanest river in the world. Fifty years ago the river was so polluted that it was declared dead (biologically).

  • How wide is the Thames in London?

The official source of the River Thames is marked with a stone near Kemble. The land along the River Thames is mostly made up of rolling hills and farmland, until it reaches urbanized areas such as London. The width of the River Thames varies from 60 feet at Lechlade, to Whitstable and Foulness Point at 18 miles. Read more