Waterloo Area Guide

UK Area Guides

Waterloo, Central London


Living in Waterloo

Looking at the crowds along the Southbank, it's hard to imagine that this area was dead just a few decades ago, devastated by WWII bombing. But the regeneration efforts since, including the building of contemporary icons like the Southbank Centre and the Tate Modern, have been wholly successful in turning the area around Waterloo station into a destination in its own right. With a range of new-build flats, entertainment options, and excellent transport links, Waterloo is a wonderful neighbourhood to call home. 




The area is mostly favoured by young professionals and politicians who need easy access to Westminster. It is a busy area, with many people passing through during the day en route to other places, or visiting the attractions. 


The crime rate in this area is high - not unusual for a tourist area that attracts a lot of foot traffic, and for a major transport hub like Waterloo station. However, it should be noted that in addition to the crime rate being about three times as high as London overall, the violence against the person rate is about doubled here. The Met Police reminds us that these figures do not necessarily reflect how likely you are to be the victim of a crime here. 


Parking can be difficult and expensive in this area, and traffic can be congested. About half as many people own cars in this area as in London overall. 


There are numerous restaurants, pubs, and bars, many of them in complexes along the lovely Southbank. There are also a few nightclubs in the area, and it's central and well connected enough that you can reach Soho or any other nightlife hotspot in London easily.

Family Friendly

About 80% of residents of this area are working aged, with the rest split between children and pensioners, suggesting that this is not particularly a family area. However, the area is well served by both private and state schools. Most of the accommodation in this area is flats, rather than family homes. There are a handful of decently-sized parks in this area. The crime rate is high. 

Pet Friendly

There are a handful of decently sized parks in this area, but most of the accommodation is flats rather than houses, and many of them are new-build high rises - this may make it comparatively difficult to own a dog in this area. 


Waterloo rail and Underground station is located in Zone 1, and offers access to the Northern, Bakerloo, and Jubilee Lines in addition to South West Trains services. Nearby, Southwark is on the Jubilee Line, and Lambeth North is on the Bakerloo Line. Elephant & Castle is on the Bakerloo and Nothern Lines, and has rail services, and Borough and Kennington are on the Northern Line. There are numerous bus connections in the area, as well, and most of Central London is within easy walking or cycling distance - a journey that can take advantage of the stunning views from the Southbank.