Taking a tour is a great way to spend a day, a week, or just a couple of hours and learn in depth about things that are of interest to you or things that you have never thought about but would be keen to see and/or do. When you take a tour you have an expert guide or guides who will teach you much more about your interest in their subject and show you people, things, and places of importance.
For example, you can take an afternoon tour of Beatrix Potter sites in the Lake District, beginning with a cruise on Lake Windermere – the largest lake in the country. Then you visit Hill Top Farm where the author wrote many of her books, and you can go into the house, explore the garden, and visit the shop.
Then you are taken into the medieval village of Hawkshead and see William Wordsworth’s old grammar school. There are plenty of chances to get off the bus and explore the local delights. Then it is back on the bus to go to Tarn Hows, a well-known beauty spot with fabulous views of the Langdale Pikes. Finally, you are taken back into Windermere.
You can step back in time to a bygone era and visit some of the fragments of London that Charles Dickens not only knew, but which he featured in some of his stories. Guided by a world expert on the life and works of Charles Dickens you will learn lots of surprising facts about this time in the 19th century. Visit the sites that are mentioned in stories such as Pickwick Papers, Our Mutual Friend, Oliver Twist and many other books.
William Shakespeare is widely considered as the greatest English language author who ever lived. Now you can take a Shakespeare London walking tour into the history and London life of the world’s most famous playwright. It starts from The Old Vic and you will be guided through areas frequented by the Bard of Avon. Along the way experiencing readings and learning about the 16th and 17th century London.
Much of Shakespearean London has been swept away during the Great Fire of London and The Blitz, however your expert guide and actor will guide you alongside the great artery of Elizabethan London – the River Thames, leading you past theatres and other historic sites Shakespeare would have been familiar with in his literature.
Football fans may take delight in exploring the stadium of their favourite football team. For instance, Liverpool Football Club at its’ Anfield Stadium offers The Anfield Experience and The Ultimate Anfield Experience. These begin with a drink with one of your LFC “Legends” in one of the Executive Boxes where the Legend will share personal experiences and memories of playing for the club, and includes a Q & A session. This is followed by morning refreshments in the Café and a Preview Tour of the Stadium where you will see some of the new features of the Main Stand and the manager’s new dugout.
A three-course lunch is served in one of the Executive Boxes and includes a visit from your Legend. There is also a visit to the Liverpool FC Story which is the club’s interactive museum, there are opportunities for autographs and photos, and you get an exclusive limited edition gift to take home. Football fans will love this tour.
How about a visit to Leeds Castle near Maidstone in Kent? Here you can take a tour of the restricted areas “below stairs” where the servants took care of all the chores, prepared meals, kept the wine, and more, in order to see how they made the running of the Castle seem effortless. In fact, they had to operate with military precision. You can see falconry displays every day in the area in front of the Maze: displays include falcons, hawks, vultures, and owls.
Every Wednesday you can join one of the Castle gardeners for a tour of the gardens. Learn about the Culpeper Cottage Garden with its neat box hedges and displays of irises, hollyhocks, and roses. Then explore the wonderful Lady Baillie Mediterranean Terraces featuring exotic plants including palm trees and bananas. Leeds Castle also offers the History Set in Stone Tour where you will discover what happened in 1660 to cause half of the Castle to fall into the moat, and what a medieval toilet in the time of Henry VIII looked like!
You can take a day trip to Stonehenge which begins with a visit to Windsor Castle. You will be one of the first people to enter the Castle on that day and see Queen Mary’s Doll’s house and tour the State Apartments.
Then it’s onwards to Stonehenge. This impressive rock formation has been there for 5,000 years and its’ purpose is still hotly disputed to this day. You can explore the stones and learn about the history in the visitor centre.
A packed lunch is provided on this trip, avoiding wasting time queueing in a restaurant. After Stonehenge you visit Lacock which is a magical medieval village. You will see Lacock Abbey which is not an abbey at all, but a quirky country home that was built on the foundations of a former nunnery.
Then it’s onwards again to Bath which is the first UK city to be designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take a walking tour of the city sights and learn about its’ rich history before finally getting back on the coach for the return journey to London.
Those are just four of a huge range of different tours that you can take in the UK which include people, things, and places which you may never have dreamed existed.