What makes this tour special
· See the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey
· Go on a short cruise down the river past the London Eye, Somerset House and the edgy South Bank
· Gaze up at the dome in St Paul’s Cathedral
· Appreciate the splendour of Guildhall above the arena where gladiators fought
The English, and British, capital has a great deal to offer travellers seeking its past. Stretching back nearly two millennia, the city has come far from its roots as a Roman provincial outpost. Going with an expert, and private, guide through its historic heart, you will experience the this journey to global city in the company of its most important buildings.
The World of Westminster
While it can be hard to believe, the area now known as Westminster was once apart from the Saxon City. This changed over time, helped greatly by the construction of Westminster Abbey and the growth of the area into the political centre of first England, then the United Kingdom. Going through the area with your guide, you will see the Houses of Parliament as well as other sights which – though perhaps less well-known – have still played their part in British history. Go past Downing Street, where people could walk up to the front door only 30 years ago, and St Margaret’s Church where Sir Winston Churchill led parliamentarians to give thanks after the defeat of Germany in 1945.
The Old City
East of Westminster is where the Romans and Saxons built their respective cities: Londinium and Ludenwic. Approaching it by boat, where you will go past sights including the London Eye, the bohemian South Bank and Somerset House. This past helped the area become a global financial centre, and your guide will be happy to talk about how this happened as you take a trip up the historic Fleet Street to St Paul’s Cathedral. Built over the site of a predecessor that burnt down during the Great Fire of London in 1666, Wren’s domed masterpiece is an architectural masterpiece which has become a symbol of the city. Although the legacy of the London blitz means many of the buildings are modern, there remain some beautiful reminders of how the city looked before it was bombed; not least of which is Guildhall. With a past going back more than 800 years, the building is now home to the City of London Corporation. Even older are the ruins below the building, and your guide will take you into its depths to see the remains of the Roman amphitheatre.