Friday, 29 April 2011

London - A City that is Ready to Welcome You

Last week I was lucky enough to take several tourist groups on a panoramic tour around London. They couldn’t have picked a better week to visit this amazing city. London is really buzzing at the moment. We have the royal wedding to look forward to on 29th April, the Queen’s jubilee will be celebrated with a grand river-pageant along the River Thames on Sunday 3rd June, 2012 and then the Olympics, London 2012 begin in July.

It’s amazing how thousands of people have come to London just to see the preparation for the events. I took the opportunity to walk my tourists, some from Singapore and Malaysia, through St James’ Park to see Buckingham Palace. The park was popular and especially pretty during the most perfect spring weather that we have enjoyed for many years. Children played and fed the variety of water birds that are kept in the park and families generally enjoyed the quiet away from the busy chaos of London streets. It’s hard to believe but true that 40% of London is green space and no-matter where you are in London, you’re not far from a peaceful square or grand park, all free and full of fascinating distractions from the busy backdrop of London. For example; Kensington Gardens is home to the ‘Peter Pan’ playground with a replica of Captain Hook’s ship and Indian village, all for the delight of children of all ages. Regent’s Park is home to its very own open-air theatre and boating lake; also home to London Zoo (for which there is an entry charge). Hyde Park is home to the Serpentine Art Gallery and borders on to ‘Speaker’s Corner’ at Marble Arch where every Sunday morning you can witness true freedom of speech as members of the public literally stand on soap boxes to remonstrate about something they feel strongly about.

Try not to miss this opportunity to visit a city that is ready to welcome you, all these great events are rare occasions and will probably not happen again in our great city for at least another generation. There’s nothing like being able to say, ‘I was there, I saw that’, so book your trip and enjoy the celebrations with us.

Linda King is a professional blue badge tour guide who loves visual arts and architecture and relishes the idea of escorting groups around galleries and Museums. With literature as her forte she is a qualified London tour guide and Windsor National Curriculum Specialist.