Sherlock Holmes is one of the world’s most famous fictional detectives. Created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in 1887, the iconic character has since appeared in dozens of stage adaptations, films, television productions and publications, going on to become a cultural icon. Whether you are a fan of the novels or the most recent BBC series, there’s no denying that pipe-smoking detective is a global phenomenon.
There are tons of locations and attractions up and down the UK that are connected to Sherlock Holmes and his adventures. But here, we’re just looking at the critically acclaimed BBC series Sherlock, starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. Though the show was mostly set in London, a lot of it was actually filmed in Cardiff. Here is a list of some of BBC Sherlock filming locations that can help you follow the steps of Holmes and Dr Watson:
WARNING: Spoilers for Seasons 1-4 (even though the show’s been out for a while)
North Gower Street – 221B Baker Street
While the real Baker Street is home to the Sherlock Holmes Museum (though it’s at 237-41 rather than 221B), on the show scenes were filmed on the much quieter No. 187 North Gower Street. Also here is the real Speedy’s Cafe which you can visit – although you won’t be able to go upstairs as they are private flats. All interior shots were filmed on a set in Cardiff.
St Bartholomew’s Hospital
Founded in 1123 St Bartholomew’s Hospital (commonly referred to as St Bart’s) is one of the oldest surviving hospitals in England. It features many times on the show, most famously as the location where Sherlock and Watson first meet, where Molly Hooper works, and where the Reichenbach Fall takes place.
Carlton Terrace – Diogenes Club
The exterior of the British Academy in Carlton Terrace was used as the Diogenes Club, the stuffy fictional gentleman’s club where Sherlock’s brother Mycroft spends his time.
London’s Chinatown (which was first established in Soho in the 1970s) can be seen featured in the episode “The Blind Banker”.
South Bank Skate Park
Also in the episode “The Blind Banker” Sherlock and Watson cryptic symbols graffitied on the walls of the South Bank Skate Park, which is located between the Hungerford Bridge and Waterloo Bridge.
Landmark London Hotel – Reunion Restaurant
This restaurant was featured in “The Empty Hearse” as the aptly named Reunion Restaurant where Watson discovers that Holmes is alive. While the exteriors of the Landmark London Hotel on Marylebone were used, the interiors were filmed at the Daffodil in Cheltenham.
Bristol has been used as a fill-in for London on several scenes in BBC’s Sherlock.
St Mary Magdalene Church
The church was used as the backdrop for John and Mary Watson’s wedding in “The Sign Of Three”.
John and Mary’s reception takes place in the orangery at Goldney Hall (which is otherwise residence halls for students at the University of Bristol). The venue is available for all kinds of celebrations.
Bristol South Swimming Pool
The eerily lit Bristol South Swimming Pool can be seen where the Sherlock and Moriarty come face-to-face for the first time in Season One’s “The Great Game” (and in the following episode “A Scandal in Belgravia”.
Cathedral Square & Queen’s Square
Cathedral Square, located behind the 12th century Bristol Cathedral, and Queen’s Square in the city centre can be seen in the special historical episode, “The Abominable Bride”.
The Sherlock New Year’s special, “The Abominable Bride” features Tyntesfield House in Bristol. The house was used as both Sir Eustace Carmichael’s mansion and Dr Watson’s London home
This pub on busy James Street street corner was featured in the Sherlock minisode “Many Happy Returns” with Anderson and Lestrade.
Cardiff’s fascinating National Museum has been used in several scenes.
The scene where Moriarty steals the crown jewels from the Tower of London in “The Reichenbach Fall” was filmed at Cardiff Castle. However, the rooms used for filming aren’t generally open to the public.
Three Bears Cave
Fforest Fawr near Tongwynlais just outside Cardiff, the spooky Three Bears Cave sites deep in a hole in the ground. It can be seen featured in the episode “The Hounds of Baskerville”.
Swinhay House, Wotton-under-Edge
Swinhay House, a mansion in North Nibley near Wotton-under-Edge, Gloucestershireowned by Sir David McMurtry, was used as the home of Series 3 baddie Charles Augustus Magnussen – Appledore.
Bush Inn, St. Hilary
The picturesque Bush Inn in the small Welsh town of St. Hilary featured as The Cross Keys Pub in “The Hounds of Baskerville” along with the nearby church of St Hilary.
Saint Woollos Cemetery, Newport
The emotional finale of Series 2 “The Reichenbach Fall” features a scene where John and Mrs Hudson visit Sherlock’s grave; they were filmed at this cemetery in Newport, Wales
If we have missed any of your favourite Sherlock filming locations, let us know in the comments below!