The Mayflower

Bars and pubs Rotherhithe
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 4 out of 5 stars
(24 user reviews)
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The Mayflower

Of all the Thamesside pubs, this one is the most special, the most atmospheric, the most tucked-away – and its wooden deck at the back has probably the best view of the river too. If there’s a better accompaniment to an evening pint than the sound of the river slapping away through the slats under your feet, and the lights of the City twinkling away in the distance, we’ve yet to find it. Inside is brilliant too – it dates back to 1620, with ecclesiastical wooden pews, real ales, an open fire and a friendly hubbub of chatter. A real find of a pub.

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The Mayflower says
The Mayflower is a traditional, typically English pub and restaurant boasting a great view over the Thames from the outside, decked jetty. The building is the oldest pub you'll find in London on the Thames. It's full of history and the original mooring point of The Pilgrim Fathers' Mayflower ship.
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Venue name: The Mayflower
Contact:
Address: 117 Rotherhithe St
London
SE16 4NF
Opening hours: Open 11am-11pm daily. Food served noon-3pm, 6pm -9.30pm Mon-Fri; noon-3pm, 6-9.30pm Sat; noon-9.30pm, 6pm - 8pm Sun
Transport: Rotherhithe Overground
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Average User Rating

4.2 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:13
  • 4 star:7
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:2
LiveReviews|24
1 person listening
Geo F

Food, drink, setting, staff... all good or very good.
Gets too busy weekends though..because of the above..!!

Alison B

Great beer, lovely restaurant upstairs and a brilliant pub quiz on a Tuesday night

Angela L

Please don't rush to go as it's my favourite pub except I don't like their beer selection.

Aguu K

Awesome local pub with great and friendly atmosphere, good selection of drinks and an amazing view

MatureLinda

Booked a table for 6 at the Mayflower for my birthday.  The quality of the food was very gppd and service was excellent.  Attentive and friendly staff, with views of the Thames on a lovely sunny day made it a very enjoyable experience. Non-discretionary 12.5% service charge  added to the bill,

Alexandra L
Tastemaker

Wander down any street in London and among the blue plaques, the cobbled stones and the Oliver Twist architecture, you’re guaranteed to find a pub claiming to be one of the oldest & most historical taverns in town. Except there’s a good chance it’s actually not and if you’re new to the city, either as a guide-book toting tourist or a hesitantly exploring inhabitant, how are you supposed to know? How are you supposed to spot the truly awesome & genuinely ancient places out of the ocean of dross that’s littered with Wetherspoons’ but little else of note? Easy. You read my words, you heed my advice, you (metaphorically because we’ve only just met) take my hand and you go to the Mayflower.


Tripping the light fantastic in Rotherhithe might not have been on your list of things to do this weekend but if it’s history, location & good food all washed down with a flagon of mead that you’re after, it’s exactly what you need to do because it’s in this south London area that you’ll find the Mayflower, the oldest pub on the Thames. Yielding some of the best views in the city from the original docking spot of the Pilgrim Father’s Mayflower ship, this place is everything you could want from something answering to the title ‘pub’.


It’s small, dark & cosy but it’s also warm, clean & well-cared for. Curved and uneven steps that lead up to a first floor dining room that is often fully booked at the weekends; scarred but polished tables that are always packed but with the sort of people who will happily scooch over for you; an outdoor deck that’s equally brilliant whether you’re under sunglasses or a complimentary blanket…all these things make it the sort of pub the movie industry repeatedly tries & repeatedly fails to get right in big-screen incantations. No Hollywood, putting Ray Winstone in a bar does not an authentic British pub make.


I hate an oxymoron but I’m trotting one out now when I say that Sunday lunches here a little bit epic. The roast beef is applause worthy is both value & flavour; folds of soft, pink, gravy splashed beef nestle alongside crunchy potatoes and a fiery wallop of horseradish, all of which are sheltered by a golden Yorkshire pudding big enough to require its own post code. Puddings are as brazen in their Britishness as Carry On films, a steadfast need to apologise and an unflagging adoration of tea; the sticky toffee pudding is particularly worthy of the extra notch you’ll have to claw out of your belt afterwards.


A constant rotation of guest beers and ales will make it popular with craft & traditional beer lovers alike and staff are happy to share their tips for the best tipple and keen to make sure you have a great time doing so. The day we went was cold & frosty outside but inside, the feeling was as warm & welcoming as your own front door on a dark November night. 


Whether you’re here for a week and looking to experience something that’s vintage in the true, non-chintzy-teacup meaning of the word or you’re here for good and about to start calling London home, putting this gem of a pub on your to-do list and then actually doing it, is simply something you mustn’t neglect to do.


Anaelle
Tastemaker

A gem of a pub!


This historic pub was built nearly 400 years ago, but still stands proudly. As soon as you step in you get this old pub vibe which I love: wood everywhere, a little wonky, a little creaky… Great ambiance. But if you prefer you can sit on the terrace, built directly above the Thames, that’s a great option too. And needless to say the views are breath-taking.


Beware - it can be a bit packed on weekends.

Jane M

Lovely atmosphere, good range of beers, large portions of delicious homemade food, waterside terrace- beware of very high tides: the passing boats' wakes can cause a splash through the floorboards!

John O

Cosy in winter by the open fire, and fantastic in summer on the outside deck above the river.

Paul C
Staff Writer

My new favourite pub in London! Been here a few times recently and it never disappoints. The deck at the back is lovely, nice to sit out and watch the boats go past on the Thames. The food is good and reasonably priced and it's great that they do a good selection of beers as well. 

Sarena R

Quaint pub in great location with lots of history. Great food, cozy, warm atmosphere

Alex Plim
moderatorStaff Writer

In terms of atmosphere this has to be one of London's finest pubs. But that atmosphere, along with the riverside location, comes for a price – the drinks aren't particularly cheap.

Ros A
Tastemaker

I had been living locally for 1.5 years before I got down to the esteemed Mayflower. I had heard lots about it, but didn't much believe the hype and couldn't be bothered to brave that long 20 minute walk there (nawt).  It's nothing like I imagined. For some reason I thought it would be a new-ish, quay style building. It's actually really old, and really lovely. Quirky little paintings, stag heads on the wall.... my kind of place. 


I love the atmosphere here, and it is very warm and good for winter. Also an outdoor area with heaters which I'm sure would be lovely in the Summer. We ate here - couple of comments - it's pretty hearty pub food, so don't go expecting anything else. We had calamari (which was v greasy- avoid) and then burgers- that were tasty. Drinks were good and staff were friendly. I've been back multiple times since and I'm a bit of a regular. Fun, busy vibes on a weekend evening. 

Brendan m

Awesome place, never disappoints. Great in Summer on the jetty and great in winter with the fire on and all the candles. They've now just added a bunch of heat lamos and on the jetty with a tent - great for me as this is my favourite part of the pub being right over the river! Food is delicious and made fresh - amazing gravy :)

Annmarie b

New owner took over 3 years ago and completely transformed the menu, ambience and overall experience of the place. It's simply the best kept secret in London and it's my local! Staff are really laid back and freindly, there's no pretentiousness here - they think it's a great pub too!

Virginie K

My favourite pub in London!! I always bring my friend and family or anyone who doesn't know it!! I advice to take the special, the pie is amazing!! the beer reel beer (Ale) and the staff great and cheerful. The terrace is the best spot during a warm evening even if you need to come early as it is very crowded!!

Anil P

Nice crowd. Ate LAMB char grilled with salad. The lamb was extremely rubbery. I mentioned this to bar staff and the the waiters but not even an apology! So pls don't order the lamb which was red inside and doesn't settle well in the stomach.  Staff not helpful.  Not recommended.

roz

Went December 2011 for my birthday. Went last night for my partners birthday. Both times experienced terrible service. Last night the food was terrible. I paid £16.99 for a fillet steak, waited about an hour after finishing the starter before the steak arrived, I had ordered it rare, so it was hard to ruin, but they managed. It was so dry, it had obviously been reheated, the chips were dry too. Plate presentation did not exist. Utterly terrible, it was low quality pub grub, charging gastro pub prices. I will never eat there again, unless I hear that the management and chef have both changed.

Gmar

Stale fish with soggy chips -most disappointing and a real tourist catch