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Horseguards on parade, London

Things to do in the UK

A rich and complex history, hundreds of miles of coast and countryside, and a wealth of cultural treasures make the UK a fascinating destination. Our carefully chosen things to do will help you get a deeper insight into the people and the culture by exploring well-known destinations in unusual ways and uncovering some lesser-known facets of the United Kingdom.

You can walk in the footsteps of Shakespeare or Wordsworth as you discover medieval villages and glorious lakelands, zip through London in a Mini Cooper or learn about whisky production before hiking through the Scottish Highlands. Whether you go fly fishing with a local guide or explore oyster farms and political history in Northern Ireland, our guides and activities bring the UK to life.

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Audley Travel specialist Andea

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Ideas for experiencing the UK

Experiences you have as you travel often hold the longest memories. As part of their research trips, our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the UK, and the best local guides. These activities reflect some of their best-loved experiences.

  • Islay wildlife cruise
    Islay coastline

    Islay wildlife cruise

    Isle of Islay

    Islay wildlife cruise

    Spot a wild variety of birdlife, seals, goats and possibly dolphins and basking sharks on this two-hour tour off the coast of Islay. Join a small group for a great introduction to the region, with expert commentary by one of the islanders.

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  • Kilmartin Glen Neolithic site
    Kilmartin Glen

    Kilmartin Glen Neolithic site

    Oban

    Kilmartin Glen Neolithic site

    Explore the prehistoric burial cairns, stone circles and standing stones in Kilmartin Glen south of Oban. The region was inhabited for more than 5,000 years and with 350 sites of interest has the richest concentration of Neolithic and Bronze Age remains in Scotland.

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  • Corryvreckan wildlife boat trip
    Corryvreckan wildlife tour

    Corryvreckan wildlife boat trip

    Oban

    Corryvreckan wildlife boat trip

    Explore the coastline of western Scotland where narrow channels of water produce rushing tidal races and the Corryvreckan whirlpool, the world’s third largest, which is a magnet for marine life including whales, sharks and porpoises.

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  • Glasgow musical heritage walking tour
    Glasgow

    Glasgow musical heritage walking tour

    Glasgow

    Glasgow musical heritage walking tour

    Discover musical Glasgow on this two-hour walking tour. It explores the city’s legendary musical heritage, throws light on the bands, venues and artistic collaborations that were pivotal to its success, and looks at the current state of the city’s music scene.

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  • Steam train to the Isles
    Glenfinnan Viaduct

    Steam train to the Isles

    The Highlands

    Steam train to the Isles

    Hop on board a classic steam train for a two-hour journey from Fort William to Mallaig. Pass many scenes associated with the Jacobite Rebellion, traverse the viaduct made famous by the Harry Potter films and soak up the scenery.

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  • Eat Walk Edinburgh tasting trail
    Glass of whisky

    Eat Walk Edinburgh tasting trail

    Edinburgh

    Eat Walk Edinburgh tasting trail

    Discover Edinburgh's thriving food scene on a half-day walk around the city streets, stopping off to sample local, national and international food and drink along the way in the company of a passionate guide and a host of engaging restaurateurs.

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  • Wildlife photography walk through Rothiemurchus Estate
    Reindeer in the Cairngorms

    Wildlife photography walk through Rothiemurchus Estate

    The Cairngorms

    Wildlife photography walk through Rothiemurchus Estate

    Improve your photographic skills on a three-hour guided walk through the ancient forests of the Rothiemurchus Estate, a regular filming location for wildlife documentaries. With the help of a professional photographer you'll get up close to many of its rare species.

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  • Dunvegan Castle after-hours tour
    Dunvegan Castle

    Dunvegan Castle after-hours tour

    Isle of Skye

    Dunvegan Castle after-hours tour

    Enjoy exclusive access to lakeside Dunvegan Castle, the oldest continually inhabited castle in Scotland. This guided tour takes in a short cruise to see the impressive structure from the water as well as a private meeting with the estate manager.

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  • Old and New Towns walking tour
    Edinburgh's Old Town

    Old and New Towns walking tour

    Edinburgh

    Old and New Towns walking tour

    Your expert guide leads a walking tour through Edinburgh’s historical districts. Stroll up the Royal Mile and down the narrow side streets, called closes or wynds. Then discover the stylish shopping and elegant architecture located on New Town’s Georgian boulevards.

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  • Ghosts and ghouls of Edinburgh's Old Town tour
    Edinburgh Castle

    Ghosts and ghouls of Edinburgh's Old Town tour

    Edinburgh

    Ghosts and ghouls of Edinburgh's Old Town tour

    Brave Edinburgh's darkest corners on a two-hour walking tour that leads you down narrow laneways and into underground vaults to hear stories of murder, mystery and intrigue and get an insight into the illicit goings on in the medieval city.

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  • Dalwhinnie Distillery tour with whisky and chocolate tasting
    Glass of whisky

    Dalwhinnie Distillery tour with whisky and chocolate tasting

    The Cairngorms

    Dalwhinnie Distillery tour with whisky and chocolate tasting

    Learn how Scotland's smooth but complex single malts are produced on a tour of a historic whisky distillery set high in the Cairngorms National Park, and discover what gives each whisky its distinctive characteristics as you linger over several samples.

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  • Castles and palaces of Edinburgh's surrounds
    Linlithgow Palace

    Castles and palaces of Edinburgh's surrounds

    Edinburgh

    Castles and palaces of Edinburgh's surrounds

    Explore some of the numerous historic monuments that litter the countryside around Edinburgh on a full-day tour of the region's most interesting castles, stately homes and palaces. Visit elaborate chapels, country manors and strategic defense positions as you learn about the region's history.

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  • Walking tour of St Andrews
    St Andrews

    Walking tour of St Andrews

    St Andrews

    Walking tour of St Andrews

    Explore historic St Andrews on the Scottish coast in the company of an expert local guide who can lead you down the cobbled streets to ancient university buildings, a medieval castle and cathedral, and a world-famous golf course.

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  • Private Loch Ness cruise with a piper
    Loch Ness

    Private Loch Ness cruise with a piper

    Loch Ness

    Private Loch Ness cruise with a piper

    Explore the legendary Loch Ness aboard a modern cruiser and allow your captain to regale you with stories of its mysterious monster as you glide past romantic castles and learn about its history to the tunes of a traditional piper.

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  • Fly fishing with a local ghillie
    Salmon

    Fly fishing with a local ghillie

    Isle of Skye

    Fly fishing with a local ghillie

    Try your hand at fly fishing in the renowned River Snizort on the Isle of Skye. A local ghillie (hunting and fishing guide) will help you perfect your casting technique and bag a catch of Atlantic salmon.

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  • Northern Skye explorer
    Kilt Rock, Isle of Skye

    Northern Skye explorer

    Isle of Skye

    Northern Skye explorer

    Explore the wilds of northern Skye on this flexible full-day tour that takes you to the most dramatic of the island's landscapes. You'll see towering rock pinnacles, powerful waterfalls and windswept beaches alongside verdant hillsides and fast-flowing rivers.

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  • Champagne seaplane tour over the Trossachs
    Seaplane

    Champagne seaplane tour over the Trossachs

    Loch Lomond

    Champagne seaplane tour over the Trossachs

    Get an aerial view of the Highland scenery around Loch Lomond on a 40-minute seaplane tour of the region. Take in the Trossachs National Park, Loch Lomond and parts of the west Highlands.

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  • Scotland's Jacobite past: Culloden Battlefield and Cawdor Castle
    Jacobite gravestone at Culloden

    Scotland's Jacobite past: Culloden Battlefield and Cawdor Castle

    The Highlands

    Scotland's Jacobite past: Culloden Battlefield and Cawdor Castle

    Explore Scotland's Jacobite history on a full-day tour of some of the country's most significant historical monuments. Visit the Culloden Battlefield, scene of the rebellion's final, bloody battle, the ancient Clava Cairns and stately Cawdor Castle.

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  • Loch Lomond cycle and cruise
    Loch Lomond

    Loch Lomond cycle and cruise

    The Highlands

    Loch Lomond cycle and cruise

    Cycle along the west coast of Loch Lomond on a lakeshore cycle path enjoying the spectacular scenery and small, attractive villages along the way before returning to your start point by boat and getting a different perspective from the water.

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  • Explore Rothiemurchus Estate by Land Rover
    Land Rover

    Explore Rothiemurchus Estate by Land Rover

    The Cairngorms

    Explore Rothiemurchus Estate by Land Rover

    Explore the vast Rothiemurchus Estate on a guided tour around ancient Caledonian forest well-known for its wide variety of wildlife. You'll also learn about the history of the estate and the Grant family who have lived here for 450 years.

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  • West Highlands explorer day
    Glencoe

    West Highlands explorer day

    The Highlands

    West Highlands explorer day

    Explore the rugged scenery of the West Highlands on this full-day tour of Glen Etive, Glencoe and the Nevis range which offers a chance to discover film locations, folk museums and hidden lookouts offering sweeping panoramas.

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  • Islay's whisky & history
    Laphroaig Distillery

    Islay's whisky & history

    Isle of Islay

    Islay's whisky & history

    Explore the Isle of Islay in southwest Scotland on a full-day tour that looks into its early-Christian settlements, traditional way of life and long history of whisky making with visits to local sights, museums and distilleries.

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  • Street art walking tour
    Glasgow street art

    Street art walking tour

    Glasgow

    Street art walking tour

    Discover Glasgow’s thriving creative scene on this half-day walking tour of the city’s street-art sites. With numerous murals created by a variety of international artists, the works offer social commentary as well as an insight into the city’s history and development.

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  • Jura island tour
    Jura

    Jura island tour

    Isle of Jura

    Jura island tour

    Explore the Isle of Jura off Scotland’s southwest coast, learn about its traditional way of life and crofting history, enjoy the sweeping views, and observe a range of wildlife on this full-day guided tour of the wild and scenic island.

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  • Argyll Safari castles tour
    Kilchurn Castle

    Argyll Safari castles tour

    Loch Awe

    Argyll Safari castles tour

    Explore the castles and fortifications of Scotland’s west coast on this full-day, private guided tour which takes in an Iron Age fortification, a ruined medieval castle and an extravagant 18th-century mansion set on the shore of the country’s longest sea loch.

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  • Castle Howard and Rievaulx Abbey
    Castle Howard

    Castle Howard and Rievaulx Abbey

    York

    Castle Howard and Rievaulx Abbey

    Take a private guided driving tour of the windswept North York Moors. Visit the house and gardens of the stately Castle Howard, continue on to the pretty market town of Helmsley, and end at the haunting ruins of nearby Rievaulx Abbey.

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  • Blenheim Palace half-day tour
    Blenheim Palace

    Blenheim Palace half-day tour

    Oxford

    Blenheim Palace half-day tour

    Uncover the fascinating history, frayed relationships and royal connections of Blenheim Palace on a private half-day tour of this monumental country mansion. A Baroque masterpiece home to the Duke of Marlborough, its lavish rooms and elaborate gardens are fabulously impressive.

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  • Chauffeured punting
    Oxford punting

    Chauffeured punting

    Oxford

    Chauffeured punting

    Discover Oxford's tranquil meandering waterways, glorious architecture and beautiful gardens on a chauffeured punt ride along the River Cherwell. Without the hassle of steering these temperamental vessels you can sit back and soak up the scenery.

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  • Georgian and Roman Bath walking tour
    Roman Baths, Bath

    Georgian and Roman Bath walking tour

    Bath

    Georgian and Roman Bath walking tour

    The Roman Baths and the Royal Crescent are among the sights on this full-day guided walking tour of Bath. You tour the baths first built by the Romans to tap into the local hot springs before visiting some of the meeting places for Georgian high society.

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  • Westminster Abbey and the Tower by boat
    Tower of London

    Westminster Abbey and the Tower by boat

    London

    Westminster Abbey and the Tower by boat

    Avoid the crowds as you discover London’s most important sites with a private guide. This intimate tour visits Westminster Abbey and the Tower of London, where you can see the Crown Jewels, with a connecting boat ride along the Thames.

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  • Stonehenge, Lacock and Avebury tour
    Stonehenge

    Stonehenge, Lacock and Avebury tour

    Bath

    Stonehenge, Lacock and Avebury tour

    Explore England’s long history, written in stone. Your private guide takes you to the ancient stone circles at Stonehenge and Avebury, with a stop at Lacock Abbey, a former nunnery turned stately Tudor home.

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  • Tea at Beatrix Potter's cottage
    Hawkshead

    Tea at Beatrix Potter's cottage

    The Lake District

    Tea at Beatrix Potter's cottage

    Discover the land that Beatrix Potter loved and helped to preserve on this tour of her Lake District home. Cross Lake Windermere before having a tour and tea with a Potter expert at the author’s marital house, Castle Cottage.

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  • Greenwich walking tour
    Royal Naval College

    Greenwich walking tour

    London

    Greenwich walking tour

    Explore delightful Greenwich, a leafy borough renowned for its magnificent architecture and strong connections to the maritime and scientific world. Stroll through the Royal Observatory, strand straddling two hemisphere's are learn about the race to reach China aboard the Cutty Sark.

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  • Photographic tour of the Cotswolds
    The Cotswolds

    Photographic tour of the Cotswolds

    The Cotswolds

    Photographic tour of the Cotswolds

    Explore the stunning Cotswolds and improve your photographic skills on a full-day, private tour of the region. You'll be led to some of the most scenic locations by a professional photographer who will help you get impressive shots of the region.

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  • Literary tour of London
    Vintage Books

    Literary tour of London

    London

    Literary tour of London

    Discover some of the secrets behind London's most famous literary figures on this fascinating half-day walking tour around Bloomsbury, one of the city's most creative corners. Wander through historic streets with an expert guide and finish up at the British Library.

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  • Brighton walking tour
    Brighton Royal Pavilion

    Brighton walking tour

    Brighton

    Brighton walking tour

    Uncover the history behind the vibrant and dynamic city of Brighton on a half-day privately guided walking tour, which takes you along its streets and lanes and reveals its humble origins, regal endorsement, Regency heyday and modern pride.

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  • North Lakes explorer
    Buttermere

    North Lakes explorer

    The Lake District

    North Lakes explorer

    Your driver-guide will create a tour of the North Lakes area based around your interests. You can take your time exploring the unspoiled lakes, sheep-dotted mountains, and tiny towns at an unhurried pace, with pauses for walks in the countryside or taking photographs.

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  • White Cliffs of Dover & Dover Castle
    White Cliffs of Dover

    White Cliffs of Dover & Dover Castle

    Canterbury

    White Cliffs of Dover & Dover Castle

    In this strategically important part of England, you’ll visit Dover Castle, a key military position since medieval times and pivotal to the evacuation of Dunkirk in World War II, and the White Cliffs of Dover on a half-day guided tour.

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  • Behind-the-scenes tour at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre
    Shakespeare's books

    Behind-the-scenes tour at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre

    Stratford-upon-Avon

    Behind-the-scenes tour at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre

    Explore behind the scenes on a backstage tour of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-upon Avon, the home of the famous playwright. Learn about the history and inner workings of the theater on a trip though areas generally inaccessible to the public.

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  • Hardknott Roman Fort, Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway and Muncaster Castle
    Hardknott Roman Fort

    Hardknott Roman Fort, Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway and Muncaster Castle

    The Lake District

    Hardknott Roman Fort, Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway and Muncaster Castle

    Your driver-guide can navigate Cumbria’s steep and winding roads while you admire the looming mountains and sweeping sea views. The tour also stops at Muncaster Castle, the Roman-era Hardknott Fort and the Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway, a Victorian steam train line.

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  • Lake District farm experience
    Lake District farm experience , The Lake District

    Lake District farm experience

    The Lake District

    Lake District farm experience

    Experience life on a traditional Lake District fell farm where you'll get a chance to meet the hardy Herdwick sheep, learn about farm practices and local lifestyles and get to try your hand at dry stone walling.

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  • Theater performance at Shakespeare's Globe
    Globe Theatre, London

    Theater performance at Shakespeare's Globe

    London

    Theater performance at Shakespeare's Globe

    Immerse yourself into the world of William Shakespeare with a trip to the Globe Theatre. This replica faithfully reproduces the original's thatched roof, open-air performance area and actors who encourage the audience to get involved in the production.

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  • Oxford walking tour
    Oxford

    Oxford walking tour

    Oxford

    Oxford walking tour

    Walk through the medieval streets of Oxford guided by a university graduate to seek out some of the city's more interesting colleges, chapels and laneways as you follow in the footsteps of famous writers, politicians or philosophers.

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  • Explore the northern Cotswolds
    The Cotswolds

    Explore the northern Cotswolds

    The Cotswolds

    Explore the northern Cotswolds

    Explore the undulating hills, exquisite medieval villages and rich history of the northern Cotswolds on this private, full-day tour. With the help of a local expert, discover the region's timeless charm and handsome architecture before you finish up in a quintessential village pub.

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  • St Paul’s Cathedral
    St Paul's Cathedral

    St Paul’s Cathedral

    London

    St Paul’s Cathedral

    Discover the history behind St Paul's Cathedral on a private guided tour with a local expert. Learn about its design and construction, the craftsmen who worked on it and climb to the top of the dome for panoramic views over central London.

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  • Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle
    Buckingham Palace

    Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle

    London

    Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle

    Get a glimpse into the lives of the British monarchy on this full-day tour that takes in the austere Buckingham Palace in London and then tours the fascinating State Apartments of imposing Windsor Castle, the preferred royal home.

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  • Battle, Winchelsea & Rye
    Battle Abbey gatehouse

    Battle, Winchelsea & Rye

    Rye

    Battle, Winchelsea & Rye

    Explore the history and growth of England’s southeast on this half-day guided tour of Battle, Winchelsea and Rye. It spends time at handsome towns, historic seaside resorts, ruined abbeys and the site of the Battle of Hastings.

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  • Mini Cooper tour
    Mini Cooper

    Mini Cooper tour

    London

    Mini Cooper tour

    Buckle up and sit back for the ride of a lifetime as you whizz around London's backstreets in a classic Mini Cooper, ticking off the sights as you go and discovering some of the city's hidden charms with a local expert.

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  • Liverpool heritage tour
    Liverpool

    Liverpool heritage tour

    Liverpool

    Liverpool heritage tour

    This private tour takes you through the long history of the city of Liverpool. Your guide will offer an insight into its imposing public buildings, galleries and cathedrals, and shed light on some of its many famous citizens.

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  • Canterbury walking tour & cathedral
    Canterbury riverside

    Canterbury walking tour & cathedral

    Canterbury

    Canterbury walking tour & cathedral

    Discover the medieval lanes, half-timbered houses and grand cathedral in Canterbury on this private half-day walking tour led by a local expert guide. They’ll offer you a deeper insight into this historic city, its important figures and its architecture.

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  • Borough Market with a food writer
    Vegetable produce, Borough market

    Borough Market with a food writer

    London

    Borough Market with a food writer

    Explore vibrant and cosmopolitan Borough Market in the company of an acclaimed chef and food writer who can take you through the historic, stall-lined lanes, introduce you to traders and fill you in on the market's history.

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  • Cambridge foodie walking tour
    Traditional scones in Cambridge

    Cambridge foodie walking tour

    Cambridge

    Cambridge foodie walking tour

    This walking tour of Cambridge is designed to help you learn the layout of the city and introduce you to some of the best food Cambridge has to offer.

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  • Rickenbacker taxi tour
    Rickenbacker taxi

    Rickenbacker taxi tour

    Liverpool

    Rickenbacker taxi tour

    Driving about Liverpool in a psychedelic taxi, you can follow in the footsteps of the Beatles on a private guided tour. You’ll see their childhood homes and schools, their teenage haunts, and the sites that inspired some of their classic hits.

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  • Cycling tour of Cambridge
    Cambridge

    Cycling tour of Cambridge

    Cambridge

    Cycling tour of Cambridge

    This two-hour guided cycling tour around Cambridge is a fun and informative way to explore the city and see more than you could on foot. You’ll cycle through meadows along the river and past the university for which the city is known.

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  • Wordsworth's Lake District
    Rydal dining room

    Wordsworth's Lake District

    The Lake District

    Wordsworth's Lake District

    Explore the landscape that inspired one of Britain’s most renowned poets. Your guide will bring you to two of Wordsworth’s homes, Rydal Mount and Dove Cottage, to learn about his life and family. You can also explore nearby Grasmere village.

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  • Ancient York walking tour
    York Minster

    Ancient York walking tour

    York

    Ancient York walking tour

    Discover the pivotal role that York has played in English history over the past 2,000 years. Your private guide will lead a walking tour to visit the city’s gates, walls and medieval churches, as well as the tiny, crooked alleys called snickleways.

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  • Shakespeare's Stratford walking tour
    Shakespeare's birthplace

    Shakespeare's Stratford walking tour

    Stratford-upon-Avon

    Shakespeare's Stratford walking tour

    Explore the medieval market town of Stratford-upon-Avon in the company of an expert guide who will walk you through the streets of William Shakespeare's hometown, taking you to his birthplace, school and burial place as the Bard's story unfolds.

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