Step into a time capsule of theatrical history, where the echoes of Shakespeare's immortal words still dance upon the winds of the Thames. Welcome to Shakespeare's Globe in London, a living ode to the Bard's enduring legacy. The original Globe Theatre, constructed in 1599, was a beacon of the Elizabethan stage.
Yet, fate dealt it a tumultuous hand, including a catastrophic fire in 1613. Following its fiery demise, a second Globe Theatre rose from its ashes on the same site in 1614, only to be shuttered in 1642 during the tumultuous times of the English Civil War. However, the spirit of Shakespeare refused to be extinguished. In 1997, actor-director Sam Wanamaker's unwavering passion brought forth the reconstruction of Shakespeare's Globe, standing just 230 meters from the site of the original theatre. Like its illustrious predecessor, this Globe was born in the historic open-air style, where the Bard's timeless works continue to enchant audiences. In 2014, an indoor candlelit theatre opened under the name of Sam Wanamaker's Playhouse for more intimate performances.
Join us as we present to you an A-Z guide to Shakespeare's Globe, designed to help you understand everything from its history and layout, to choosing the best seats, nearby resturants and how to get to the theatre.
Address: 21 New Globe Walk, London SE1 9DT, United Kingdom
Opened: June 1997
Seating Capacity of Globe Theatre: 1570
Seating Capacity of Sam Wanamaker's Playhouse: 340
Check out the Shakespeare's Globe London Seating Plan.
Within The Globe, there are two distinct seating options. The first is a platform situated in the Yard, providing a unique perspective. The second choice is the Boxes in the Middle Gallery, offering a different vantage point. For the patrons with wheelchairs, a designated wheelchair position is found in Box A of the Lower Gallery within the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. Access to this space is conveniently available through a door on the piazza level. Additionally, a companion seat can be accommodated on either the left or right side of the wheelchair user's space, ensuring a comfortable experience for all.
- In-house Bar and Restaurant: The Swan bar and resturant inside the Shakespeare's Globe, is open for indoor/outdoor dining and drinks. It has a great view of River Thames and St. Paul's Cathedral.
- Toilets: There are accessible toilets available on Piazza level and Lecture Theatre level. The premises also has gender-neutral washrooms.
- Baby Changing Facilities: You can find a gender-neutral restroom equipped with baby changing facilities adjacent to the Shop. It's easily accessible from the main foyer area through the elevator, where you can select 'Piazza Level' for your convenience.
- Gift Shop: The Shakespeare's Globe gift shop is located on the Piazza Level, accessible via stairs and lift. You can buy all kinds of merchandise including clothes, stationery, posters, bags and more.
- Tours: Guided tours of the Shakespeare's Globe are avaialble.
- Book in Advance: It is advisable to book your ticket in advance to watch a show at Shakespeare's Globe.
- Access: For differently-abled visitors, it is recommended that they inform the venue in advance of their requirements and regarding the accompaniment of a guide dog for a hassle-free experience.
- Recording Policy: Photography and recording is not allowed in the theatre.
- Children’s Tickets: Children under the age of three are permitted to attend a performance for free.
- Booster Cushions: Booster cushions are not available at Sam Wanamaker’s Playhouse. Children may find it difficult to view the stage from the Upper Galleries.
- Check for Weather Conditions: Shakespeare's Globe is an open-air theatre, therefore check the weather conditions before the show for appropriate clothing.
Train: The local stations are Blackfriars (10 minute walk, South Bank exit, lifts to street level from platform); London Bridge (15 minute walk); Cannon Street (20 minute walk) and Waterloo (25 minute walk).
Bus: 45, 63, 100 (to Blackfriars Bridge); 11, 15, 17, 26 (to Mansion House); 76 (to St Paul’s Cathedral); 344 (from Liverpool Street Station, towards Clapham, on Southwark Bridge Road) and 381, 344 (towards Liverpool Street Station, on Southwark Street).
On Foot: There are footpaths along the river from Waterloo and from Southwark Bridge. The Millennium Footbridge is 50 metres from the theatre.
Bike: Public bike racks are available on Bankside and New Globe Walk, each situated just 10 meters from the theatre. Additionally, there's a Transport for London Santander Cycle Hire docking point conveniently located on New Globe Walk.
Restaurants Near Shakespeare's Globe
1. Pizza Express: Nestled by the lively South Bank of the Thames, Pizza Express is a culinary treasure next to the Shakespeare's Globe Theatre and Tate Modern. Savour delicious pizzas against a backdrop of breathtaking cityscapes.
2. Zizzi - Bankside: From tempting Rustica Pizzas to delectable Pasta dishes, daring salads, and sumptuous desserts, relish an impeccable dining experience with the backdrop of the River Thames at Zizzi-Bankside.
3. Tas Pide: At Tas Pide, indulge in Turkish mezze, casseroles, and wood-fired pide within a contemporary setting featuring an open kitchen and adorned with captivating wall mosaics.
4. Capricci: Located in the heart of London, Capricci offers an authentic Italian culinary journey. Savor exquisite dishes and exceptional wines, all within a charming Italian atmosphere that transports you straight to Italy's enchanting streets.
Frequently Asked Questions About Shakespeare's Globe
Where is Shakespeare's Globe located?
21 New Globe Walk, London SE1 9DT, United Kingdom
What is the seating capacity of Shakespeare's Globe?
For Globe Theatre, the seating capacity is 1570 people, and for Sam Wanamaker's Playhouse, the seating capacity is 340.
Does Shakespeare's Globe have accessible seating?
At The Globe, there are two seating options: a Yard platform for a unique view and Middle Gallery Boxes for a different perspective. Wheelchair seating in Sam Wanamaker Playhouse is in Box A of the Lower Gallery, with easy access from the piazza level. Companion seating is available on either side for a comfortable experience.
What are the facilities available at Shakespeare's Globe?
Shakespeare's Globe has available facilities like an in-house bar and restaurant called The Swan, accessible toilets, guided tours, baby changing facilities, and a gift shop for all the merchandise.
How can I reach Shakespeare's Globe?
You can reach Shakespeare's Globe by taking a bus, train, tube, car, bike, or on foot.
Which is the nearest tube station to Shakespeare's Globe?
You can easily access Shakespeare's Globe via these nearby stations: London Bridge (Northern line, 9-minute stroll), Blackfriars (District and Circle Lines, 10-minute walk), Mansion House (District and Circle Lines, 10-minute walk), Southwark (Jubilee Line, 15-minute walk), and St Paul's (Central Line, 15-minute walk).