The Handbook
The Handbook

From a sing-a-long David Bowie tour of Brixton (far less cringe than it sounds) to the scariest retelling of the Jack the Ripper tale you can find, a historical journey through Dickens’ favourite drinking dens to street art excursions that will point out the city’s Banksy, these are the best London walking tours to book this summer.

Three-Hour Old City of London Walking Tour

Centuries of history crammed into three hours with views of some of the world’s most iconic landmarks and the promise of surpassing your daily step count? The Three-Hour Old City of London Walking Tour guarantees bang for your buck. 

Uncover some of London’s key stories, from the Great Fire to the Knights Templar, and take in sights from the Thames to St Paul’s and the Tower of London, plus learn about some of the capital’s hidden gems and quintessential curiosities. 

A surefire way to fall in love with the city all over again. 

 

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Tour For Muggles

If Harry is your heartthrob and you don’t give a muggins who knows it, this Potter-inspired tour is for you.

Fun for all ages, the tour will take you from London Bridge to Leicester Square to learn all about the world of wizardry and soak in some of the film’s most spellbinding locations, from Diagon Alley to the Leaky Cauldron, and the Ministry of Magic.

If the reviews are anything to go by (it’s pretty much earned a sold five stars from most review sites and is listed as the number one tour in London), booking is a no brainer.

Plus, at £16 a ticket and £14 for the under 12s, it’s much cheaper than a trip to the Warner Bros Studios, leaving you with change for a round of butterbeers at the end.

Jack the Ripper Tour with ‘Ripper-Vision’ in London

‘Ripper-Vision’ sounds pretty ghastly but if you’re keen, you can purchase it for less than 15 quid on one of the capital’s most chilling tours.

The one-of-a-kind Jack the Ripper experience uses handheld projectors to accompany spine-chilling tales of the murders committed by London’s most mysterious Victorian criminal, as you make your way through the dimly lit back streets of Whitechapel – we’re pretty sure Tower Hamlets Council keep these streets looking as creepy as possible for these tours alone

Taking place at night, the tour’s not one for the faint of heart, or little ones, and you might need to settle your nerves with a stiff drink afterwards – we recommend Spitalfield’s Ten Bells pub where Jack supposedly took his first victim.

Shoreditch Street Art Tour

While we love the busby-clad guards of Buckingham Palace, the ubiquitous London phone boxes and the awe-inspiring architecture of St. Paul’s, it pays to wonder off the tourist  track once in a while. Head to Shoreditch for a walking tour with a difference – the Street Art Tour which tracks the colourful street’s of one of the city’s coolest neighbourhoods.

Take in the art, the murals, the cafes, bars, markets and galleries that play host to some of  London’s ever changing kaleidoscope of work, as you tick off some of the UK’s most famous street artists’ work, from Banksy to Shepard Fairey, Eine to Roa.

Don’t forget your camera (or your phone), there will be Instagram opportunities aplenty.

Magic of Film Tour with Quizzes

If you’re into your film and have a competitive streak but don’t fancy joining a tour with complete strangers, get a group of friends together and book one of the virtual Magic of Film Tour with Quizzes events. 

Totally virtual, it’s unlike traditional guided tours but you will be able to interact with your ‘host’ throughout.

The tour reveals filming locations and London sights that are significant to popular movies and uses quizzes and games to ensure you stay engaged and healthily competitive throughout. Starting in Soho and ending at Southwark Cathedral, the tour gives you the chance to scale some of London’s most iconic streets too. 

Gangster Tour of London’s East End

Fascinated by London’s seedy underworld or always been curious about the Krays? This is the tour for you.

Guided by actor Vas Blackwood, you will journey through two-hours of the sinister world of organised crime in London’s East End.

Vas will expose unbelievable real life stories and put his acting skills to good use by recreating moments from London’s gangster underworld.

Film buffs will love the film locations sliced in and anyone fascinated by the notorious Kray Twins will leave with plenty of sordid tales.

 

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Walk Eat Talk Eat

Walk, eat, talk, eat, repeat is the only rule on this tour as you step off the tourist trail and discover the city the best way possible, through its exciting cuisine.

You’ll get to try modern and traditional dishes, British treats and food from far-flung places, all served with a dollop of London history.

There are multiple tours on offer, from discovering the hidden gems between Tower Bridge and Borough to the local foodie stars of East London.

London’s Original David Bowie Musical Walking Tour

A must for any bonafide Bowie fans out there, this unique tour takes a look at the London life of the iconic musician, with stories and anecdotes from his life, as well as live music.

Thread the streets of the Starman’s hometown of Brixton, for an all-encompassing journey from birth to death, brought to life with live renditions of some of David Bowie’s most famous songs, from Space Oddity to Rebel Rebel and Let’s Dance, performed by the charming and hugely talented tour guide Nick.

See the house where he grew up in and find out how he came to have two uniquely different eye colours, and end up in front of the iconic mural dedicated to the late, great artist.

Historical Pub Walking Tour of London

Pair your walking tour with a chilled pint from one of London’s charming, historic pubs as this one blurs the lines between history lesson and drinks.

Try local brews (you do have to pay yourself), see city sights, and hear stories of the legendary figures who were known to enjoy a few pints in the very same spots – think iSr Arthur Conan Doyle, Charles Dickens, and Alfred Tennyson, to name just a few.

No one knows the decent pubs better than a local so book on to discover some of the city’s most historic alehouses.

 

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Black History Walks

Spread over two hours, book onto one of the Black History Walks for a lesson in the African history of London. The walks take place in 10 different areas, delving into stories from the last 2,000 years of London’s Black History.

From the Roman ruins to the British Empire and blue plaques celebrating some of the most inspiring Londoners, you’ll probably learn more on this two-hour tour than you did in all your history lessons put together.