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London In a Day: Tower of London, Westminster Abbey & Changing of the Guard

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    What to Expect
    Itinerary
    This is a typical itinerary for this product

    Stop At: Tower of London, Tower Hill, London EC3N 4AB England

    Your last stop, the Tower of London, is also the most impressive. With pre-reserved tickets at the quietest time of day, you won’t have to battle crowds to enjoy nearly 1,000 years of bloody royal feuds, improbable jailbreaks, jewel heists, menacing ravens, and even a ghost or two. Your guide, who has an expert grasp of British history, will regale you with the often hair-raising stories of this royal stronghold, jail, zoo, and sometimes execution block, including the mystery of two lost royal boys that still raises the hairs of everyone who hears it.

    Duration: 1 hour

    Pass By: Buckingham Palace, Spur Road, London SW1A 1AA England

    Leaving the spiritual heart of England, you’ll avoid the large crowds gathered in front of Buckingham Palace to watch the Changing of the Guard and head to Wellington Barracks instead. This is where most of the ceremony actually takes place, including the band’s performance and the highly-formal uniform checks. It’s even more surprising then that so few visitors come here to watch the Changing of the Guard, meaning you can get right within arm’s reach of the guards as they pass.


    Stop At: Tower Bridge Road, London SE1 2UP England

    After a break for lunch (your guide will recommend a range of great places to eat) you’ll reconvene for a short walk down to the Thames for a scenic river cruise that will take you past a number of London landmarks like the Shard, the Gherkin, St. Paul’s Cathedral, the London Eye and more. Disembark at the foot of Tower Bridge and cross the iconic attraction as you learn its unexpected history.

    Duration: 20 minutes

    Pass By: Tate Modern, 53 Bankside, London SE1 9TG England

    Tate Modern

    Pass By: Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, 21 New Globe Walk, London SE1 9DT England

    Shakespeare's Globe Theatre

    Pass By: St. James's Park, Horse Guards Road The Storeyard, London SW1A 2BJ England

    Now it’s time for little surprise. On the other side of the St. James’s Park you’ll step into the Horse Guards Parade to witness a much less famous, but perhaps even more impressive ceremony: The changing of of the Queen’s Life Guard, an elite cavalry regiment, mounted on exquisitely-bred, and specially-trained horses. As you watch the guards go through the ceremony, your guide will explain the significance of everything from the armor they wear to the colors on their uniforms.

    Pass By: St. James's Palace, London England

    St. Jame's Palace

    Pass By: St. Paul's Cathedral, St Paul's Churchyard, London EC4M 8AD England

    After a break for lunch (your guide will recommend a range of great places to eat) you’ll reconvene for a short walk down to the Thames for a scenic river cruise that will take you past a number of London landmarks like the Shard, the Gherkin, St. Paul’s Cathedral, the London Eye and more. Disembark at the foot of Tower Bridge and cross the iconic attraction as you learn its unexpected history.


    Pass By: Trafalgar Square, Centre of the City, London SW1A England

    Your next stop is Trafalgar Square, the geographic center of London and one of the city’s most iconic public spaces. While you marvel at the size of the bronze lions and enormous triumphal column, your guide will tell you about the naval history that gives the square its name as well as the dashing Admiral Nelson whose fame during his short life makes modern celebrities seem like total amateurs. You’ll also come across some unexpected curios, like the smallest police box in the world and a statue of George Washington that sits on a micro-plot of American soil.


    Stop At: Westminster Abbey, 20 Dean's Yard Broad Sanctuary, London SW1P 3PA England

    Your day begins in Westminster Abbey, where you’ll take advantage of pre-reserved tickets to visit England’s most hallowed church, before most of the crowds arrive. As you stroll across the beautiful Cosmati pavements and peer up into the elaborate vaulted ceiling, your guide will introduce you to the church’s tumultuous history, which mirrors that of England.

    Duration: 1 hour

    Stop At: Horse Guards Parade at Whitehall, Horse Guards Whitehall, London SW1A 2AX England

    On the other side of the St. James’s Park you’ll step into the Horse Guards Parade to witness a much less famous, but perhaps even more impressive ceremony: The changing of of the Queen’s Life Guard, an elite cavalry regiment, mounted on exquisitely-bred, and specially-trained horses.

    Duration: 15 minutes

    Pass By: Houses of Parliament, Parliament Square, London SW1A 0AA England

    House of Parliament

    Stop At: Changing of the Guard, Buckingham Palace, London SW1A 1AA England

    Leaving the spiritual heart of England, you’ll avoid the large crowds gathered in front of Buckingham Palace to watch the Changing of the Guard and head to Wellington Barracks instead. This is where most of the ceremony actually takes place, including the band’s performance and the highly-formal uniform checks. It’s even more surprising then that so few visitors come here to watch the Changing of the Guard, meaning you can get right within arm’s reach of the guards as they pass.

    Kindly note that 'Changing of the Guard' can be canceled last minute due to bad weather, and does not take place every day. On days this ceremony does not take place, guests will see the Queen's Life Guard Change, Horse Guards Parade.



    Duration: 20 minutes

    Pass By: Parliament Square, London England

    Parliament Square

    Pass By: Coca-Cola London Eye, Westminster Bridge Road Riverside Building, County Hall, London SE1 7PB England

    After a break for lunch (your guide will recommend a range of great places to eat) you’ll reconvene for a short walk down to the Thames for a scenic river cruise that will take you past a number of London landmarks like the Shard, the Gherkin, St. Paul’s Cathedral, the London Eye and more. Disembark at the foot of Tower Bridge and cross the iconic attraction as you learn its unexpected history.

    Stop At: Thames Cruises, Lambeth Palace Rd Lambeth Pier, Albert Embankment, London SE1 7SG England

    After a break for lunch (your guide will recommend a range of great places to eat) you’ll reconvene for a short walk down to the Thames for a scenic river cruise that will take you past a number of London landmarks like the Shard, the Gherkin, St. Paul’s Cathedral, the London Eye and more. Disembark at the foot of Tower Bridge and cross the iconic attraction as you learn its unexpected history.

    Duration: 15 minutes

    Pass By: Take Walks, London England

    Take Walks
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    Important Information
    Departure Point
    Sir Winston Churchill Statue, Parliament Square, Westminster, London SW1P 3JX, UK
    Departure Time
    9:00 AM
    Duration
    8h 30m
    Return Details
    35 Tower Hill, St Katharine's & Wapping, London EC3N 4DR, UK
    Inclusions
    • Changing of the Guard
    • Horseguards Parade
    • River cruise along the Thames
    • Free time for lunch at own expense
    • Headsets
    • Small Groups of 20 people
    • English only speaking guide
    • Entrance to Westminster Abbey
    • Entrance to Tower of London
    • Entry/Admission - Tower of London
    • Entry/Admission - Westminster Abbey
    • Entry/Admission - Thames Cruises
    Exclusions
    • Food & Beverages
    • Gratuities
    • Hotel Pick-Up/Drop-Off
    Show More
    Additional Info
    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
    • Not wheelchair accessible
    • Unfortunately we are unable to accommodate guests with mobility impairments, wheelchairs or strollers on this tour.
    • Comfortable walking shoes recommended.
    • Please note that for security reasons bag searches will take place at Westminster Abbey and at the Tower of London.
    • Near public transportation
    • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
    • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 15 travelers
    Cancellation Policy
    For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
    Reviews (55)
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    All reviews london highlights london visit tour company an excellent guide day tour small group walking tour katie guard stories knowledge information sights
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    1 - 5 of 24 reviews
    Reviewed 3 days ago via mobile

    Sal was awesome. Very knowledgeable. Very funny I feel like a had taste of London life on this tour. Definitely must do to get th stories behind Westminster Abby and the Tower of London

    Date of experience: October 2019
    Thank N1734RUleor
    TakeWalksSF, Guest Relations Manager at Take Walks, responded to this reviewResponded yesterday

    We're so excited to have gotten to share our city with you! Thank you for your recommendation!

    Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

    We were so incredibly impressed with this tour - our guide Charlotte was amazing. Her knowledge, insights and storytelling were exceptional. Would highly recommend.

    Date of experience: September 2019
    Thank Sue H
    TakeWalksSF, Guest Relations Manager at Take Walks, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

    We're so glad to hear that you enjoyed your walking tour with Charlotte! Thank you for taking the time to share with us.

    Reviewed 28 August 2019

    It was a very warm day for a long walk about London, but our guide Rosy was excellent. She took care to keep us in the shade as much as possible and timed all of the sites perfectly: Westminster Abbey, Changing of the Guard, Trafalgar...More

    Date of experience: August 2019
    Thank WaterJudge
    TakeWalksSF, Guest Relations Manager at Take Walks, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

    We know how important guest care is in the summer heat, and we're glad to hear that you were kept safe and cool in Rosie's capable hands!

    Reviewed 18 August 2019

    Exceeded expectations. Alex is very knowledgeable and extremely passionate. He made the whole experience fantastic and is an asset to the organisation.More

    Date of experience: August 2019
    Thank mariannemaluta
    TakeWalks, Public Relations Manager at Take Walks, responded to this reviewResponded 20 August 2019

    Dear mariannemaluta, We greatly appreciate your review of this experience! Thank you for taking the time to let us know your thoughts. We are so pleased to hear that Alex made your whole experience fantastic and that this tour exceeded your expectations! We hope you...More

    Reviewed 16 August 2019

    This tour was one of the most memorable tours we did whilst holidaying in the UK. Our guide Alice, was so informative on the history of all our locations, filling us with so many fascinating insight into the histories gone by. No question went unanswered....More

    Date of experience: August 2019
    Thank Cazzahad
    TakeWalks, Public Relations Manager at Take Walks, responded to this reviewResponded 20 August 2019

    Dear Cazzahad, Thank you for writing such a kind review! We are so happy to hear that this tour was one of the most memorable on your holiday in the UK! Your description of Alice walking you through history is very accurate - she's passionate...More

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    Questions & Answers
    Ask a question
    stephanielF4092QL
    23 August 2019|
    AnswerShow all 5 answers
    Response from Cazzahad | Reviewed this property |
    The tour finished at Tower of London.
    1
    Vote
    mishuah
    24 June 2018|
    Answer
    Response from John H | Reviewed this property |
    Believe it was around 4:00pm...the tour guide left us slightly prior to this as they are not permitted into the area with the Crown Jewels...
    0
    Votes
    Key Details
    • Duration: 8h 30m
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    • Languages Offered: English
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