This Interactive ‘Doctor Who’ Map of London Reveals All the Places the Time Lord Has Traveled

As the Tenth Doctor might say: “Allons-y!”
The Fifteenth Doctor (Ncuti Gatwa) and his companion Ruby Sunday (Millie Gibson) are ready for their close-up.
The Fifteenth Doctor (Ncuti Gatwa) and his companion Ruby Sunday (Millie Gibson) are ready for their close-up. / James Pardon/Bad Wolf/BBC Studios

A lot has happened in London over the past few centuries. Fires, blitzes, plagues, Jack the Ripper, political scandals, and endless royal goings-on. So it makes sense that Doctor Who, Britain’s foremost time-travel franchise (and the longest-running science fiction TV show ever), would feature it a lot.

Various incarnations of The Doctor—the two-hearted, century-straddling Time Lord—have made umpteen visits to the city from the very beginning, with the East London neighborhood of Shoreditch featuring heavily in the first episode, 1963’s “An Unearthly Child.”

While Doctor Who has been filmed in Cardiff since its 2005 relaunch, the Welsh capital is often called upon to double for the English one. Throughout the show’s run, a startling number of iconic London landmarks have been destroyed, revealed to be secret bases, or revealed to be secret bases and subsequently destroyed.

In 2013, the Londonist painstakingly compiled a map of every time the Doctor visited London, which it recently updated to account for Peter Capaldi and Jodie Whittaker’s time as the Time Lord, as well as Ncuti Gatwa’s introduction as the Fifteenth Doctor. The website has promised to keep the map updated once Gatwa officially takes over the TARDIS in May.

Jonn Elledge, who created the original map, knows more about maps than most of us, as evidenced by his upcoming book, A History Of The World In 47 Borders

Mapping six decades of time travel onto a particular city provides any curious Whovian with answers to questions they didn’t know they wanted to ask. If you’ve ever laid awake at night pondering how many times we’ve seen the Doctor visit Heathrow Airport, for instance, the answer—surprisingly—is just once. In 1982, the Fifth Doctor (Peter Davison) went looking for a missing Concorde (which he found, 140 million years away—that’s time travel for you).

Only two of the Doctors’ adventures don’t appear at all. Paul McGann’s Eighth Doctor was mainly seen in San Francisco, while Peter Cushing’s Dr. (not Doctor) Who—the only time the character’s name has actually been Dr. Who—has long been deemed non-canon. 

When that first episode was broadcast back in 1963, nobody involved likely ever dreamed that, generations later, their goofy story of a grumpy time-traveler would still be inspiring people—but here we are.

The new season of Doctor Who, featuring Gatwa as the newest Doctor, will premiere on the BBC in the UK and on Disney+ in the U.S. on May 10, 2024.

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