Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Potted Panto

The Panto is one of the best loved traditions of the British Christmas. It has entertained many generations of children down the years with its mixture of comedy and song in its retelling of popular fairy stories.

Pantomime can trace its roots all the way back to ancient Greece and Rome, and has elements of theatre from the Middle Ages. The first pantomime to grace an English theatre was recorded as Tavern Bilkers by John Weaver; not his most successful work as it turned out. It was performed in gestures and dance as spoken drama was not allowed in all but a few “patent theatres”. This continued until the law was changed in 1843.

It wasn’t until the 19th century that panto began to gain real popularity as its format developed into what we would recognise today. These shows are very formulaic with parts played by either gender: typically featured in the panto you would see the principal, co-principal, the panto dame, the comic lead and of course the evil villain. It should also be noted that the major productions stick to a small group of European fairy tales, mainly those written by Charles Perrault, Joseph Jacobs, Hans Christian Andersen, and the Brothers Grimm, whereas variations can be found among smaller drama groups who are prepared to use the tried and tested formula on other stories.

If you are undecided as to which pantomime to take your family to see this Christmas, why not see them all at once? Potted Panto is a madcap race through seven pantos in eighty minutes by double Olivier nominees Dan and Jeff. This crazy comic duo takes the audience on a hilarious ride through the world of pantomime as they quick-change their way through some of the best loved panto characters; touching upon classics such as Aladdin, Dick Whittington, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, Jack and the Beanstalk and more. Potted Panto has something for everyone and will be enjoyed by the entire family.

To securely buy your tickets for Potted Panto, or any of the other amazing shows in theatres in London’s West End, visit   

Friday, 13 December 2013

Christmas Eve with

As the song goes: “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…” Like towns and cities all over the world, London is preparing for the visit of Santa Claus so you’d better not pout! Christmas Eve is a magical time meant for families to be together, listening out for the sound of sleigh bells and last minute preparations getting everything ready for Christmas Day. has some wonderful ideas for the whole family to enjoy their Christmas Eve, with a selection of sightseeing tours that will make this Christmas Eve one to remember.

See the hustle and bustle of busy London streets as people busily go about getting those last minute gifts for the ones they love. Enjoy the sights and sounds of this great city at this special time of the year.

Take a ride around the city in the evening when it is all lit up with the Illumination of London on Christmas Eve tour. See the festive Christmas lights and many of the iconic landmarks of London in their grandeur as you tour the streets in a luxury coach with the services of a professional guide.

Check out the London Panorama on Christmas Eve with Dinner and Midnight Mass. A coach tour to take in the Christmas lights around London, followed by a sumptuous three course meal with wine and then end the evening with a traditional Christmas Eve Midnight Mass at St Martin-in-the-Fields. A truly wonderful night out in London.

However you would like to spend your Christmas Eve, has a sightseeing tour to suit you. Visit and treat yourself and your family to the most wonderful Christmas Eve ever.

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Christmas Day Tours with

So what are your plans for Christmas Day? The usual? Open the presents with the kids, maybe walk the dog. Watch the Queen’s speech either before or after stuffing yourself silly, and then fall asleep in front of the television wearing a paper hat? Or maybe this year you could do something different – maybe this year you could make it an extra special…

Christmas Day with

There are lots of fantastic offers on to make this Christmas Day one the whole family will treasure. For instance, how would you like to tuck into a traditional Christmas lunch cruising on the Thames, surrounded by some of the iconic landmarks of London? Or perhaps take in the sights and sounds of London on Christmas Day from an open-topped bus with an interesting and informative commentary from a professional guide showing you all of the points of interest around you as you go along.

There are wonderful winter tours out of London that you could try. You could spend your Christmas Day with a trip through the Cotswolds to Oxford which includes a walking tour around the famous old colleges and a chance to see where scenes from Harry Potter were filmed. Following that you’ll carry on to Stratford-upon-Avon; see the birthplace of the Bard and Anne Hathaway’s Cottage and enjoy a traditional Christmas lunch.

Maybe you’d prefer a luxury coach tour around Windsor, Bath, Stonehenge and Salisbury with the services of a professional guide and traditional Christmas lunch? Or a magical Dickensian Christmas, where your luxury coach takes you to Canterbury Cathedral where you could find yourself joining the Archbishop of Canterbury for the yearly Christmas “Sung Eucharist” service, which the Archbishop often attends. Then it’s on for to the famous White Cliffs of Dover for a great photo opportunity before visiting Dover Castle, used for the filming of The Other Boleyn Girl. From there you will go to Greenwich with its Old Royal Naval College designed by Sir Christopher Wren. In Greenwich you will sit down to savour your traditional Christmas lunch. A day out for the whole family that you will never forget.

Whichever trip you choose, make Christmas Day special with

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

The Phantom of the Opera

Taken from the novel by French writer Gaston Leroux, The Phantom of the Opera tells the story of the hideously scarred ghoul who, it is rumoured, haunts the Paris opera house and causes the occasional accidents and mishaps that befall both cast and crew.

He develops an unhealthy obsession with a young Swedish chorus girl called Christine, whom he wishes to replace the resident soprano prima donna when he hears her sing. He tricks her into believing he is the angel of music, a figure her violinist father told her had taught her how to sing, and lures her to his underground lair beneath the opera house.

A love triangle develops including Christine’s childhood friend Raoul, the Compte de Chagny. Will the brave Raoul save his love from the hands of the jealous phantom? Or will the monster have his dreadful revenge?

With music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics penned by Charles Hart with additions by Richard Stilgoe, The Phantom of the Opera has enjoyed phenomenal success since its first night in London’s West End way back in 1986. Two years later it proved to be a smash hit on Broadway too; in fact it can boast to be, by some distance, the longest running show on Broadway. Similarly it is the second longest running musical and the third longest running overall in the West End.

Now you can enjoy this musical extravaganza, or any of the other wide range of shows in West End theatres, with tickets bought securely from

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

How would you like to get your hands on a golden ticket to visit the magical chocolate factory? Visit and you can. Don’t miss your chance to see the spectacular stage version of this classic children’s favourite Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at The Drury Lane Theatre Royal.

Written by Roald Dahl Charlie and the Chocolate Factory tells the story of little Charlie Bucket, a poor boy who lives in a broken down house with his bed-ridden grandparents.

In the town where Charlie lives is the world’s greatest, yet most secretive, chocolate factory. Once left abandoned it is now thriving under the ownership of the mysterious Willy Wonka, yet no workers are ever seen entering or leaving the closed factory gates.

Fascinated by the strange place, Charlie is excited when it is announced that five golden tickets would be put inside chocolate wrappers and sent around the world. The lucky winners would get to tour the chocolate factory and win a lifetime supply of chocolate. Charlie finds the last ticket and sets off with Grandpa Joe to visit the strange factory.

Get your tickets to see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory from and you can go with Charlie and Grandpa Joe, visit the amazing chocolate factory with its workforce of Oompa Loompas, and be drawn into the wonderful world of Willy Wonka. has been the gateway to London and the rest of the UK since 2003. It is the place to be if you want tickets to any of the shows in theatres across London’s West End.

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Out of London Coach Tours

As if there isn’t enough to see and do in London with its huge amount of attractions, sightseeing tours and evenings at the theatre, can also provide tickets to take you out of the capital to explore England’s green and pleasant land with out of London coach tours.

Enjoy a drive out into the countryside and visit fabulous landmarks such as the most famous stone circle of them all: Stonehenge. This ancient marvel has stood there for over 5000 years. What was its purpose: A temple, a meeting place, a calendar? Visit Stonehenge and unlock its mysteries. Why not combine it with a tour of Salisbury with its stunning cathedral, where you can see the Magna Carta, and a visit to Bath and the lovingly preserved Roman Spa that gave the city its name?

Tour the beautiful Cotswolds and visit Oxford, a town brimming with history and one of the most renowned universities in the world.

You could visit the Bard’s home town of Stratford upon Avon, see the house where the great man was born. While you’re in that neck of the woods maybe you could drop in at Warwick Castle, the medieval stronghold of The Kingmaker: Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick. The finest example of a medieval castle in Britain, with shows, tours displays and special events, Warwick Castle offers so much for the entire family, making it a day to always remember.

To see the great array of tours available from London, visit and securely buy your tickets online.

Friday, 6 December 2013

Hop On Hop Off Bus Tours of London

London: one of the greatest cities on Earth. It is a city of majesty and mystery; the beating heart of an empire and the centre of world trade for over a thousand years. It is a city that can tell so many stories. There is no better way to taste the delights that London has to offer than from the mobile viewing platform that is an open-topped hop on hop off bus tour.

Departing every approximately every 15-20 minutes, you can embark and disembark at your leisure at any one of over 44 stops at different points around the capital. The ticket is valid for two to three days (depending on which you would like to opt for) so you can take your time as you enjoy your sightseeing tour of London. As a bonus there is a free walking tour and a free point to point boat tour on the Thames. Outstanding value!

As you wind through the streets of London you will see truly awe-inspiring sights that are famous the world over: Tower Bridge, The London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square, Buckingham Palace, The Globe Theatre, The Houses of Parliament and Big Ben’s famous bell tower and so much more.

To accompany you on your tour there will be either a live professional guide to describe the sights you are passing, or an audio guide in the following languages: English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese (Brazilian) & Russian.

For a totally different experience, along the same route, you might want to try the visually spectacular London by Night open top bus tour when the city comes alive.

To buy your tickets securely for the Hop on Hop off Open Top Bus Tour, or any other of the many fantastic London sightseeing tours, visit

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

James Bond Walking Tour of London

“Bond…James Bond”: one of the most famous lines from the movies ever. James Bond, Agent 007 of the British Secret Service, is certainly one of the most iconic movie heroes ever invented. His exploits have thrilled cinema-goers since Sean Connery first battled Dr No in 1962. The popularity of this film franchise is still growing as a new generation of fans flocked to see Bond’s 23rd outing in Skyfall, this time played by Daniel Craig. Will there be a 24th? Of course, like it always says at the end of the films: Bond will be back!

Created in 1953 by Ian Fleming, the character James Bond is one of the most recognisable in cinema history. It brought popularity to the spy film genre and has spawned a host of imitators: Harry Palmer, Matt Helm, Flint, The Man from UNCLE and more recently Austin Powers and Johnny English.

The appeal of this character is immense and it is easy to understand why. Who hasn’t dreamed of travelling the world to exotic places? Who wouldn’t wish to save the day and defeat the arch villain? Who doesn’t see themselves as charming and debonair, loved by all the women he meets? Drive the Aston Martin DB5, carry the Walther PPK and play with all the fabulous gadgets that Q Branch supply. This has to be nearly every schoolboy’s dream.

You have the chance to visit the places in London made famous by 007 on the James Bond Walking Tour. Visit more than 10 locations featured in the James Bond films, including the secret offices of Universal Exports. Learn more about the secret world of MI6 and find out where fantasy meets reality.

To buy tickets securely for the James Bond Walking Tour, or any of the other fantastic sightseeing tours on offer around London and beyond, visit

Ghost Bus Tours of London

When a city is as old and as heavily populated as London, you might expect the odd ghost or two to be lurking in the shadows. In fact, it is reckoned that the capital has more ghosts per square mile than any other city in the world. What better way to see to visit their haunts than on an old London Routemaster bus that was originally tasked with carrying the dead?

The Ghost Bus Tour is a comedy theatrical sightseeing tour that will have you laughing and shaking in equal measures as it winds through the streets of London at night. It passes some of the most haunted spots in the city: The Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey where John Broadshaw, who passed judgement on Charles I, wanders around. Also Father Benedictus, a monk who appears so solid that people have spoken with him and not known they have been conversing with a ghost! On to St Paul’s Cathedral and the most haunted of them all – The Tower of London. In the Bloody Tower you can hardly move there are that many famous ghosts: Anne Boleyn and Lady Jane Grey, both married to and the victim of that most caring of husbands, Henry VIII. The two princes, allegedly murdered by their uncle who became Richard III. Maybe you’ll catch a glimpse of other spectral figures from the past, like Sir Walter Raleigh or Guy Fawkes.

The Necropolis Bus Service began life in the 19th century as a carriage to carry coffins, pallbearers and up to 50 mourners to the graveyard. The conductor served a dual role as the chief mourner and the bus had a special siren called the mourning whistle which announced its approach to pedestrians who would be expected to take off their hat and bow their heads as a sign of respect.

This continued until 1967 when a fire destroyed the original depot. The only vehicle to ‘survive’ was this fine old bus. Restored to its original midnight black and fitted out in a railway style for your comfort, the professional actors on this terrifying tour will tell you stories to make your hair stand on end.

To securely buy tickets online for this or any other London sightseeing tour, visit

Monday, 2 December 2013

Sherlock Holmes Walking Tour

Sherlock Holmes, the greatest literary detective of them all and a Great British icon known the world over. Get your tickets from to visit the places made famous by the great man.

Written by the Scottish author and physician Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Sherlock Holmes first appeared in A Study in Scarlet, way back in 1887. Since then he has appeared in four novels and fifty six short stories, as well as TV series and numerous films. The Guinness Book of Records lists Sherlock Holmes as the most portrayed movie character of them all, with more than 70 actors playing the part.

A highly popular and much loved character despite his cold and efficient image, he lived at 221B Baker Street with his friend, assistant and the narrator of many of the stories Dr John Watson, and housekeeper Mrs Hudson.

Throughout his career as a consulting detective, Holmes displays his astounding skills as a master of disguise, forensic genius and his powers of deduction wherein he can come to highly accurate conclusions from the smallest observation or clue. It is said that many of the techniques suggested by these works of fiction were actually adopted and are still used in modern policing.

Of course a hero can’t be a hero without a villain. This role was fulfilled by Holmes’ perfect foil: his arch nemesis, the evil genius Professor James Moriarty. The two poetically dying together locked in mortal combat at the end of The Final Problem when they plunge from the top of the Reichenbach Falls. Only for Holmes to return in The Adventure of the Empty House claiming he faked his own death to fool his enemies.

The Sherlock Holmes Walking Tour takes you to places made famous in the stories and subsequent movie adaptations, including the most recent appearances in the films starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law. Buying tickets for this and many other sightseeing tours in London is easy and secure on

Jack the Ripper Walking Tour

There are several walking tours that you get tickets for on, but none could possibly match the fascination and intrigue of the Jack the Ripper Walking Tour.

One of the most infamous serial killers in the history of not only London but the whole world, Jack the Ripper has gripped the imagination of generations of writers, detectives and amateur sleuths; yet to this day nobody has uncovered the truth of the killers identity.

At around 3.40am on 31st August 1888, in Bucks Row Whitechapel, the body of a woman was discovered brutally murdered. So began a spate of killings that lasted the rest of that year and had the police baffled. The first victim was called Mary Anne Nichols and she was quickly followed to her grave by Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride, Catherine Eddowes and finally Mary Jane Kelly who was discovered horribly mutilated on her bed; her heart was missing.

Although there were other similar murders around that time, some say the victims numbered eleven, the police insisted that only these five were the work of the same man. Who knows the real death toll?

So why did he stop? It has been speculated that the killer may have died himself, or possibly emigrated. It could be that he was convicted of a separate crime and imprisoned or institutionalised. Or perhaps he was on a mission, deliberately targeting these particular women because of some dangerous information they were privy to, and stopped when the job was done!

The biggest question of all is whodunit? The Jack the Ripper Walking Tour takes you to the sites around the Whitechapel area where the Ripper struck, with the services of a professional guide and “Ripperologist”. They will tell you all the facts of the case, and then it is up to you who you believe the Ripper was!

Buy your tickets to the Jack the Ripper Walking Tour, or any of the other fabulous London sightseeing tours, from

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