London bus tours have long been a popular and worthwhile way of experiencing the sights and sounds of one of the world’s most famous capital cities. Many companies operate within the city itself, usually basing themselves around well-known tourist traps such as Trafalgar Square. Whatever your interest, there is likely a London bus tour to suit you.
The type of tour and how it operates is solely down to the company you choose to travel with. Some tours will be guided, others will have audio descriptions. You may also be able to travel with a company that offers children-specific guidance, providing the same facts but in a way that is understandable to children. Most tours will offer audio guidance in a variety of languages, and some operators offer means of guiding for those with hearing or sight problems.
Essentially, most places in the city will be covered by a London bus tour of some kind. Below are some examples of tours offered by the top tour companies, and the sights they visit.
“The Original Tour: Yellow Route” Operated by The Original Tour company, the route encompasses:
- Statue of Eros
- The National Gallery
- Nelson’s Column
- Trafalgar Square
- St. James’ Palace
- The Ritz hotel
- Hype Park
- Wellington Museum
- Speaker’s Corner
- Buckingham Palace (and the Changing of the Guard)
- St. James’ Park
and many more.
Alternative Interest Tours
If you have a specific interest – such as museums – you should be able to find a tour that will cater to your chosen genre. Examples of interest-specific tours include:
- The Museum Tour
- Sightseeing Tour (all the famous landmarks)
- Historical London Tour
- Military History Tour
- Sherlock Holmes Tour (sites mentioned and featured in the famous novels)
- Dracula Tour (the areas mentioned in Bram Stoker’s famous novel)
- The Krays Tour (see the sites made infamous by London’s most famous gangsters)
- Harry Potter Tour (the areas mentioned in JK Rowling’s fantastic series, including guest appearances from a local magician to make the tour extra magical!)
Check with local operators both online and in the city itself to see if your interest can be catered to.
London Ghost Tours
London is a city with a rich and diverse history, and as a result has its fair share of ghostly phenomena. Specialist tours offering visits to London’s most infamous paranormal sites are a big hit in the capital, and usually take in sites such as Whitechapel (the hunting ground of Jack the Ripper) and the Grenandier Pub (said to be the most haunted pub in London).
If you are visiting London in October, it is worth checking out one of the Hallowe’en specific ghost tours. The operators go all-out on the spookiest night of the year to share London’s history and show off some of its paranormal interest sites, complete with themes and audio guidance.
Prices vary wildly between operators and the type of tour you are taking. Specific-interest tours are generally cheaper than the usual sightseeing tours, as they are shorter and more specialist. Discount rates for children, OAPs and students are usually available.
Expect to pay between £8 and £20 per adult person, depending on the type of tour you are taking.