In addition to going to Emirates Stadium and the nearby pubs on match day, there are a number of other Arsenal landmarks worth visiting in London. Some of these are in North London, and some of them are in southeast London where the club was originally founded before relocating north. The most notable landmark is what used to be the Arsenal Stadium at Highbury, the predecessor of Emirates.
It has been converted into apartments after the relocation in 2006, but still retains its original art deco facade, along with other recognizable features.
Highbury was the site of all of Arsenal’s greatest moments, and given its proximity to Emirates, it’s a no-brainer to visit either on match day or on another day. You can take pictures at the art deco facade, and you can enter the marble hall and see the bust of Herbert Chapman.
If you’re lucky, you might be able to gain entrance to the central courtyard of the apartments which is the area where the old field used to be.
After Highbury, the other notable landmark in North London is the Arsenal Museum, which is run by the club and located right next to the stadium. It has a lot of wonderful artifacts from the history of the club, and only consists of two large rooms so you can see everything in under an hour.
A more involved but worthwhile trip through Arsenal history will take you to the Woolwich area in southeast London. Arsenal was originally founded as as Dial Square FC by Woolwich munitions workers in 1886, and the club played at a variety of grounds in the Woolwich area before moving to North London in 1913. Many important landmarks from the history of the club’s South London years are still there, and are easy to see in a walking tour. If the weather is good, it’s a beautiful 1-2 mile walk through parks, pubs, and streets in a non-touristy area of the city. Here are some highlights, in the order I’d recommend seeing them if you’re walking:
158 Plumstead Common Road
London, United Kingdom SE182
This is the current incarnation of a pub which served as Arsenal’s original dressing room when the club was first formed and played at a nearby Cricket ground.
It’s now a public park, but the Plumbstead Common Cricket and Football Pitch, where Arsenal once played their first match.
Prince of Wales Public House
111 Plumstead Common Road
SE18 3 London, United Kingdom
This former pub is now a hostel, so you can’t easily visit the interior, but you can see the exterior as well as the sign explaining its Arsenal history. Right next to the Plumstead Common, this is where the articles of incorporation for Arsenal were signed.
The Lord Raglan
158 Burrage Road
SE18 7LA London, United Kingdom
This pub was where the original first year records and minutes were destroyed by the club’s first center back Richard Price while engaged in drunken revelry.
Who’d A Thought It Pub
7 Timbercroft Lane
SE18 2SB London, United Kingdom
This pub was owned by 1910 Arsenal Chairman Jock Craib, a tall whisky drinking well known landlord during the Woolwich Arsenal FC period.
Plumstead Rugby Club
SE18 1 London, United Kingdom
The Plumstead Rugby Fields, formerly the Plumstead Common Football Pitch, were where Arsenal played several matches in 1887 after relocating from the Plumstead Common. This is more recognizable as a pitch, since it’s still used to this day for rugby.
There are other pieces of Arsenal history in this area, including remnants of some of the concrete/stone stands from Arsenal’s home immediately prior to moving to North London, but those are all on private property and require either trespassing, or knocking on individual homeowner’s doors, so I won’t publicize that information on this site.