Must-See London Locations For Film Buffs

Movies enable you to view some aspects of life in different dimensions because they let you experience fictitious worlds or imagine how life could be in various circumstances, which contrasts real-life situations. One of the most common effects films have is making you feel you've been to a new place and experienced it in person.

With unique architecture, busy streets, and iconic sculptures, London boasts myriads of awe-inspiring spots that have appeared in popular movies for decades. From romance, comedy, science fiction, and horror to action and adventure films, London locations such as Australia House, Churchill War Rooms, National Gallery, Brent Civic Centre, and the Tower of London have been used to tell many stories. You've probably spotted one or a couple of these locations in popular movies, including "Skyfall," "Avengers: Age of Ultron," "Kingsman: The Secret Service," "Mission Impossible (1996)," and "Superman 4: The Quest for Peace."

One Reddit user who is a London resident said, "My daily commute through Walpole Park in Ealing has me bumping into lots of TV/movie set-ups. Ealing in general seems to be the go-to for the 'idyllic British neighborhood' type scene." Another Redditor noted they "always see crews outside Senate House Library." So what if you had a chance to visit some iconic places where classic movies were filmed in London? Here are the top spots to add to your movie-centric bucket list.

Australia House

The Australia House, opened in 1918, is a project that was initiated by King George V for diplomatic purposes. The strategic location of the building signified how Australia cemented its place in the world of trade and finance to create more opportunities for Australian investors and immigrants in the United Kingdom (via Australian Institute of International Affairs). The construction of the building fulfills expectations as the majority of the materials used, such as Angaston marble and wood from trees like the black bean, were sourced from Australia. In addition, Harold Parker, a renowned Australian artist, is the brains behind the sculptures in the building (per Londown Under).

Today, the Australia House is easily recognizable by movie buffs because it has been featured in many blockbuster films. First in the list of movies filmed here is "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone," where the entrance hall to the building appears in the scene where Harry and Hagrid are on their way to Gringotts Bank, which was exclusively run by goblins (via GPS My City). The intricate marble flooring and glass chandeliers in the scene are unforgettable. Australia House is also featured in "Wonder Woman," where Diana shops for clothes while being accompanied by Etta Candy (played by Lucy Davis) and Steve (per Movie Locations). According to Movie Maps, other movies filmed at this building include "X-Men: First Class," "The High Commissioner," and "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows."

Churchill War Rooms

If you're a history buff, a visit to the Churchill War Rooms will help you get a better understanding of the Second World War. The building boasts historic rooms where government officials felt safe to plan and strategize different aspects of the war. This is where Winston Churchill held top-secret meetings with his cabinet (per International Churchill Society). The Churchill Museum is part of this building, so you can take a tour to learn about Churchill's life and see some of his memorabilia. While there, you'll have a chance to listen to some of his recorded speeches and read the letters he wrote to his wife while he was away, as well as see rare photos and posters (via Visit London).

"Darkest Hour" is a movie that's based on a true story, so the setting of the Churchill War Rooms plays a huge role in the film. Although the filming didn't happen in the actual building, the filmmakers recreated the scenes in the underground war room to look as similar as possible to the real deal. While watching the film, you see what it looked like when Winston Churchill (played by Gary Oldman) met military strategists and government ministers during the peak of World War II (via Mental Floss).

Brent Civic Centre

The Brent Civic Centre is a 39,948-square-meter building that has offices serving about 2,000 employees (per Skanska). Locals visit this building for public services such as registration of births, citizenship claims, housing tax, and blue badge applications. It also houses the Wembley Library, a restaurant, a wedding suite, an outdoor seating spot, and The Drum at Wembley, which is an events space you can hire for weddings, anniversary celebrations, conferences, and other functions (via Wembley Park).

If you've watched "Avengers: Age of Ultron," you'll notice that the scene where the Hulk fights against Iron Man was filmed here (via Wembley Park). "The Theory of Everything," which dramatizes the life of Stephen Hawking (starring Eddie Redmayne), was also filmed in this spot. However, the filmmakers transformed some parts of the building into a French Hospital (via My London). The movie was so successful that Redmayne took home the best actor Oscar award in 2015 (per IMDB).

Regency Café

Regency Café is a top-rated eating spot in London that has been serving locals since 1946, but today, tourists from all over the world visit this place for British classic meals at pocket-friendly prices (per Eating Out or In). The restaurant doesn't feature fancy interior or exterior decorations, preserving that old-school appearance, and that's probably one of the reasons it is a highly sought-after spot by filmmakers who want to achieve scenes that remind viewers of an old London setting.

"Rocketman" is one of the renowned movies filmed here, and it features iconic British artist Elton John. Since the movie derives inspiration from a true story, it had to capture the humble beginnings of the singer. As such, different scenes in the movie are real places in London, and Regency Café is one of the spots that make this movie feel so authentic. Imagine sitting in the exact place where John met Bernie Taupin in the movie. You can also spot the café in different scenes of other popular films, such as "Pride" and "Brighton Rock," including "London Spy" and "Rescue Me," among other BBC series (via Regency Café).

National Gallery

The National Gallery is a place all art connoisseurs should visit at least once because it has art pieces from iconic artists who lived between the 13th and 20th centuries. In total, there are about 2,300 paintings, including the original works of legendary European artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Monet, Van Eyck, Rubens, and Renoir. If you're on a tight budget but you still want to explore different attractions in London, a visit to the National Gallery is a great choice because there is no admission fee (via Art UK).

There's that scene in "Skyfall" where James Bond (Daniel Craig) sits on a black bench as he waits for Q to arrive, with paintings hung on the wall behind him. The two sit facing a painting of a warship, which they discuss briefly. Those paintings, and some others seen in the background, can all be found at the National Gallery (per James Bond Lifestyle).


For almost two centuries, Huntsman has been serving A-list clients, from kings, queens, and top government officials to movie actors with high-end tailor-made clothing. In short, this is the place to buy clothes if you value the finest things in life and you have the budget. You can buy unique, ready-made clothes from the store, along with premium fragrances. Accessories such as sunglasses, ties, socks, pocket squares, bow ties, umbrellas, and cufflinks are also available (via Huntsman Savile Row). 

Comics have a special place in the heart of filmmaker Matthew Vaughn, so he decided to create a movie that's inspired by comic characters. Vaugh drew inspiration from the Huntsman store to create a movie with characters wearing suits and other elegant clothes (per Footprints of London). In "Kingsman: The Secret Service," the Kingsman is a high-end clothing store, where a secret organization of spies gathers to receive commands. You can feel like you've stepped into the screen when you visit the Hunstman yourself.


When it comes to secret services, you don't expect to know much about them. However, MI6 is a building that serves as the nerve center for the British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS), and ironically, it's one of the most easily recognizable buildings in London. The SIS has been using this building since 1994 when it was officially opened by Queen Elizabeth (via Design Buildings). Although visitors are not allowed to access the building, you can still have generous views of it if you take a speedboat tour on River Thames (per London Duck Tours).

James Bond fanatics will identify this building instantly because it has appeared in most films. In the opening scene of "The World Is Not Enough," James Bond (Pierce Brosnan) is seen launching a speedboat from the MI6 building and continuing with a boat chase. Cyber-attacks in "Skyfall," starring Daniel Craig, contributed to the bombing of the building by terrorists. In yet another Bond film, "Spectre," the building appears in ruins, since it was bombed in "Skyfall" (via James Bond Wiki).

Tower of London

The Tower of London is an excellent representation of the architectural prowess of the Norman Military since it was constructed in the 11th century. It is mind-blowing how this structure, which is about 1,000 years old, is still intact — no wonder it's now a World Heritage Site. This project was initiated by William the Conqueror with the aim of constructing a building that symbolizes Norman power (per UNESCO World Heritage Centre). About two million people visit this tower to learn more about European history and to see where prominent people were imprisoned (via Thrillophilia).

With such a rich history to tell, it's not surprising that the tower has been featured in several renowned films. "Spider-Man: Far From Home" takes you on a wild tour to this iconic castle, where Spiderman (Tom Holland) fights against his main antagonist, Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal), at the Tower of London (via Londonist). According to Movie Maps, other thrilling movies filmed here include "Doctor Who," "The Tower," "The Jokers," "The Complete Walk: Richard III," "Muppets Most Wanted," and "Henry VIII: Patron or Plunderer?"

South Bank

If you want to explore the cultural and economic aspects of London, a visit to South Bank will be worth every penny. This riverside stretch along River Thames hosts many entertainment spots, restaurants, and tourist attractions, including National Theatre, the Southbank Centre, London Eye, Florence Nightingale Museum, and Imperial War Museum London (via Lat Long). You can visit South Bank to relax, shop, listen to music, or attend free events and exhibitions.

In the climax of "Spectre," this locale is used in the filming of the scene where Daniel Craig (James Bond) chases after a helicopter while he's in a speedboat, and as the helicopter flies lower, you can easily spot the London Eye from a distance. In "Mission Impossible," Tom Cruise stops by the Borough Market, where he enjoys a drink in the company of Ving Rhames. South Bank also appears in "Run, Fat Boy, Run" since a part of it, Norman Foster's City Hall, is featured in the film where the marathon starts. Other movies filmed at South Bank include "World War Z," "The Bourne Ultimatum," "Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer," "Austin Powers Goldmember," and "Guardians of the Galaxy" (via 10 Bridges).

Trafalgar Square

One of the best places in London to capture crowded scenes in movies is Trafalgar Square, which is a public area that dates back to the 13th century. Today, this public square still serves as a gathering spot for public celebrations and protests (per Google Arts and Culture). You can visit Trafalgar Square to check out various attractions, including lion statues, Nelson's Column, the National Gallery, and the breathtaking Trafalgar Square fountains (via City Walks).

Trafalgar Square is featured in "V for Vendetta," with Hugo Weaving taking the role of V, in the scene where hundreds of people meet for demonstrations. In "Captain America: The First Avenger," people are seen cheering, hugging each other, and lifting flags of the United Kingdom to express relief and happiness after winning the war. In "Doctor Who," Mickey Smith and Rose Tyler are excited to share a meal in the Square. Other movies filmed here include "28 Weeks Later," "Children of Men," "An American Werewolf in London," "Night and the City," and "Edge of Tomorrow," among others (via Movie Maps).

The Tube

Did you know that the first underground railway system was built in London? The Tube (London Underground) was opened in 1863 as a new mode of transportation to help increase the efficiency of movement because the traffic in the streets was increasing at an undesirable rate. Investors became interested in this project, and in the 1900s, electric trains were introduced to the tunnels, replacing the steam-powered trains that were there before. Today, this underground railway network serves about five million people daily, picking and dropping them in 272 stations. In total, the network covers 402 kilometers, with about 543 trains operating (via London Transport Museum).

The Tube has been featured in numerous movies. In "Skyfall," Bond pursues the villain in this underground network that is overcrowded and confusing, making the scene dramatic (via James Bond 007). "Bourne Ultimatum" does an incredible job of showcasing how the London Underground is a busy place (per The Cinemaholic). The chase scene in this locale is quite thrilling, and you can feel the disappointment when Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) misses the train at Charing Cross station, losing his target. The Tube also appears in "Thor: The Dark World," "V For Vendetta," "28 Days Later," "The Fourth Protocol," "Superman 4: The Quest for Peace," and "An American Werewolf In London," among other movies (via The London Salad).