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

Duration: 8 hours 30 minutes
Destination: United Kingdom, England, London
from
10947

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  • 8 hours 30 minutes
  • London
  • E-Voucher
  • Lowest Price
  • Cancellable

Overview

Immerse yourself in the quintessential sights of London on this comprehensive, fully-guided tour of the city’s most popular attractions. Includes Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, Changing of the Guard, Trafalgar Square, Thames Boat Cruise, Tower Bridge and the Tower of London.

Itinerary
This is a typical itinerary for this product

Stop At: Tower of London, St Katharine's & Wapping 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, Marlborough Rd, St. James's, London SW1A 1BS 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, Constitution Hill 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, Westminster, London SW1P 3BD 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: Walks, London England

Take Walks

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
  • 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
Departure Point

Sir Winston Churchill Statue, Parliament Square, Westminster, London SW1P 3JX, UK


Departure Time

9:00 AM


Return Details

35 Tower Hill, St Katharine's & Wapping, London EC3N 4DR, UK

Voucher info

You can present either a paper or an electronic voucher for this activity.

Duration

8 hours 30 minutes

For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.

User's Reviews

Image - 06 Nov 2019 -

janphillips29

Richard 01....was fantastic. Extremely knowledgeable and a great communicator. His comments observations, and historical perspective gave us great insight into the history of England. I would definitely recommend his guided tour to anyone. When in England....book Richard The First!

Image - 21 Oct 2019 -

Maykato

So glad I took this tour. It was so worth it. This was my 2nd time in London and I was dismayed at how much I missed the first time. Watching the guards in action was one of them. The guide know when and where to position ourselves. Our guide was excellent. So sorry I did not catch his name, but he was very knowledgable and had an excellent sense of humor. We actually sat and listened while he enthralled us with history and stories. Some people even stopped and listened in. He went above and beyond and you can tell he clearly love his job. I saw and learned so many things. Thank you so much. Job well done.

Image - 17 Oct 2019 -

Korbin R

It was extraordinary. It was Parliament Day and we got to see the Queen. Our walking guide, Vivien, made it fun, knows all the history, answered all our questions, and just made the whole day Amazing! We’re very thankful for her for making our trip so memorable.

Image - 14 Oct 2019 -

Brent W

Nick was our host and he was great. Very knowledgeable and was more than happy to answer every single question the group had. The nicest part of the tour was the size of the group. There were only 13 of us and it made for a much more pleasant experience than if there were more people. Westminster Abbey was really nice and the Tower of London was not only historically interesting but deceptively impressive (especially for being so old). The changing of the guard was something that people should experience but if you have seen it once, you have seen it plenty of times. One of the coolest parts was getting to see Tower Bridge open for a boat to pass under. It is about 17K steps so if you are not up for the walking, I would look for a different tour. If you are cool with walking and creepy spiral staircases... book it!

Image - 02 Sep 2019 -

SCOTT C

Vivian was fantastic!! Such a depth and breadth of knowledge both past and present of London and all its history. She knew the long history of battles, buildings and bridges. We were filled with interesting trivia the whole time were where walking around London between sites. Not a wasted moment. Vivian took us to back places where we saw what all the other tourists wanted to see, but with less crowds and closer views. She was very keen on the groups need for "comfort breaks" and the overall health and ability of the her guests. She is a professional in the truest sense. She was funny, kind and personable on top of it all. Great experience. I highly recommend!

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