Canary Wharf Area Guide

Brief history to Canary Wharf

Renowned for housing some of London's most prestigious banking and residential buildings in the city this area is wholly unique.  Canary Wharf is a contemporary and exciting new district in the heart of the capital, with modern offices, homes, schools and a truly stunning landscape leading down towards the Thames.

It is the commercial hub of London and a true rival to the City with more than 100,000 people working at one of the many financial institutions and world leading business empires. Big corporate names such as Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan and Credit Suisse line the banks of the river.

In 1802 this exceptional area of Central and West London was home to the world's busiest shipping docks, its name Canary Wharf originates from Berth No 32 of the West Wood Quay Import Dock. This was a dock transporting fruit to Britain from the Mediterranean and the Canary Islands and played a crucial role in the trading industry during the era. It would have been an area of immense activity, the arrival of the giant merchant ships and the loading and unloading of cargo.

After the 1960s the docking industries started to decline and eventually the land was sold to Olympia & York in 1988. The first buildings were completed in 1991 transforming this run-down, disused area into hive of contemporary business and luxurious apartments and penthouse suites. Due to the property market crash in 1992 the developers declared bankruptcy. In December 1995 an international consortium bought the scheme, the new company was called the Canary Wharf Group, and they are still developing in the area today.

Types of Property in Canary Wharf

Luxurious new purpose built apartments and stunning penthouses overlooking the Thames is found at Canary Wharf. Being a contemporary area there a few period properties although you will find a selection of stunning 17th and 18th terraced houses in the Narrow Street conservation are. Fabulous converted warehouse apartments for those seeking chic modern industrial style living and more are currently being converted.

Average rental prices

The area is home to one of the most prestigious financial and business districts and this is reflective in the cost of renting. For a studio flat you will expect to pay in the region of £254.50 per week, a one bedroom apartment £759.25 per week and for a two bedroom £1,138.25 per week.

Council Tax Banding in Canary Wharf ranges from A – £787.02 to H – £2,361.04. For more information about council tax charges in the area please go to Band values & charges.

Who lives in Canary Wharf

As a brand new contemporary area Canary Wharf is largely inhabited by young single professionals attracted to the waterside living and close vicinity to work, sharing potentials and young couples. It is not a family area most young couple's move out to the suburbs to raise their families.

What to do in Canary Wharf

Canary Wharf is bustling, young, new and shining, it contains some of the most lovely views across the River Thames in the City. It has to be the youngest area in the entire of Central and West London. There are over 300 shops, restaurants, bars, and café's situated in four unique shopping areas. Exclusive brands such as Aquascutum, Tiffany and Mont Blanc are all found in Canary Wharf. There's a wide selection of high street chains and an excellent choice of fine dining outlets. Gordon Ramsey's gastropub The Narrow is among the locals favourites as is Carluccio's and Byron.

Jubilee Park offers beautiful green space, effectively it is a roof garden built on top of an underground railway station. It features a stunning raised serpentine water structure and pretty flower beds. The Wood Wharf during the summer is used as an outside entertainment space and hosts popular pop up restaurants, exhibitions and festivities. Mudchute Park is a family fun filled day out, it's run by a local charity and houses, experience life on a working farm or go riding in the school and there's also a little children's nursery school.

You will find a contemporary cinema complex in the West India Quay and the Museum of the Docklands is housed here also. There are five private health clubs in the area to choose from, all offer fantastic swimming pools, classes and have state of the art equipment.


Canary Wharf is ideally situated for access across Central and West London the area is well served by the Docklands Light Railway with stations at Canary Wharf, Crossharbour, South Quay and Blackwall. The Crossrail station being built at Billingsgate Market will have a journey time of just six minutes to Liverpool Street and forty minutes to Heathrow.

There are a multitude of frequent London buses in and out of Canary Wharf.

Schools, Colleges and Universities

Canary Wharf has an excellent choice of schools and colleges, for primary education the Bygrove school was judged outstanding by Ofsted and Sir William Burrough School is also recommended. For secondary level education the Canary Wharf College and the free school in East Ferry Road are among the favourites of the local population.

For more information on schools, colleges and universities in the area please visit our specified section here.