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We'll only be in London 2 full days prior to cruise. Anyone use Premium, Evans or Grayline tours for an all day tour? What are your thoughts. Any suggestions what to see on our 2nd day in London not on the all day  tour? We are leaning towards using Evans tours. They are go to the same places are about the same price. We are taking International Friends to Southampton with a stop at Stonehenge. TIA 

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Since we don’t know what you’ll be doing on your first day, it’s hard to make suggestions for the second.  But more important, only you know what interests you. Some people love museums, some don’t. Some would be fascinated by the Churchill War Rooms, some would have no interest.  My suggestion would be to do some research and come up with some possibilities that would interest you.  And certainly come back here to ask a bit more specifically. 

 

 

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As Turtles said, it depends on your interests. Some of the things we enjoyed on our two trips were the Churchill War Rooms, Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace, Westminster Abbey, Globe Theatre, National Gallery, Victoria and Albert, British Museum, and Tate Modern. Also try to see a show, preferably something British and not something that's playing on Broadway and all over the U.S.

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I would NOT take a bus tour.  Ugh.  London traffic is terrible and you'll spend hours seeing nothing.  To put the size of greater London into perspective, it is about the size of Orange County, FL with about six times the population.

 

Instead make a list of the things you REALLY want to see and then narrow it down to 6-8.  Let us know what they are and we can route them and give you advice on when to go and how to get there.

 

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1 hour ago, ducklite said:

I would NOT take a bus tour.  Ugh.  London traffic is terrible and you'll spend hours seeing nothing.  To put the size of greater London into perspective, it is about the size of Orange County, FL with about six times the population.

 

Instead make a list of the things you REALLY want to see and then narrow it down to 6-8.  Let us know what they are and we can route them and give you advice on when to go and how to get there.

 

 

Yes!! We were there for 4 days and we did use the London Pass, which worked well for us and the things we wanted to see. I had priced it out and it did save us money. Plus it had the early access for ToL. But it did include a 24 hour HoHo bus pass. So on the day we went to the British Museum is was drizzling a little bit so we decided to use our bus pass that day. We walked to a restaurant not too far from the museum and then hopped on the bus to go to St. Paul's cathedral. We could have walked there faster than the bus ride. It was so busy and lots of traffic. And we didn't really see much on the bus trip either. It's a lot easier to walk places, or take the tube to get to and from far distances.

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2 hours ago, geoherb said:

 Also try to see a show, preferably something British and not something that's playing on Broadway and all over the U.S.

 

Well, I would make an exception for "Hamilton," which we saw in London last fall.  It's a fabulous production of an extraordinary show, on par with NY, and far cheaper than in the U.S. and easier to get tickets.  (The London producers have set it up so with "paperless tickets" so that the "tickets" can't be resold.)

 

1 hour ago, ducklite said:

I would NOT take a bus tour.  Ugh. 

 

That was my thought, too.  London is very DIY-able.   I just wasn't sure whether to disagree with the OP on their plans.

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Yes, how could I forget Hamilton? We saw it in September in London and loved it. I was thinking more along the lines of The Book of Mormon, Wicked, The Lion King, etc.

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3 hours ago, geoherb said:

Yes, how could I forget Hamilton? We saw it in September in London and loved it. I was thinking more along the lines of The Book of Mormon, Wicked, The Lion King, etc.

 

I get what you guys are saying, but I HAD to see Les Miz when we were there!! LOL! I saw it when it made it's debut in Chicago back in the 80s, and then saw it when it came back a year or so ago. But I love it and it was just so awesome to see it in London!

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1 hour ago, kctwinmommy said:

 

I get what you guys are saying, but I HAD to see Les Miz when we were there!! LOL! I saw it when it made it's debut in Chicago back in the 80s, and then saw it when it came back a year or so ago. But I love it and it was just so awesome to see it in London!

I saw it in London as well. It blew away the US version. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, kctwinmommy said:

 

I get what you guys are saying, but I HAD to see Les Miz when we were there!! LOL! I saw it when it made it's debut in Chicago back in the 80s, and then saw it when it came back a year or so ago. But I love it and it was just so awesome to see it in London!

 

The English-language version of Les Miz  is in fact a British show (with its genesis in a French concept album and production).  It premiered in London in 1985.  It had a pre-Broadway run in Washington, D.C. in late 1986, and opened on Broadway in 1987.  It would be a great show to see in London.   

 

   

Edited by Turtles06

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7 hours ago, Turtles06 said:

The English-language version of Les Miz  is in fact a British show (with its genesis in a French concept album and production).  It premiered in London in 1985.  It had a pre-Broadway run in Washington, D.C. in late 1986, and opened on Broadway in 1987.  It would be a great show to see in London.   

 

In London, you only have until 13 July 2019 to see this.

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3 hours ago, Globaliser said:

 

In London, you only have until 13 July 2019 to see this.

 

Well, not exactly.  :classic_smile:    The "original production" ends on July 13, but look what's coming:

 

https://www.lesmis.com/london

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9 minutes ago, Turtles06 said:

 

Well, not exactly.  :classic_smile:    The "original production" ends on July 13, but look what's coming:

 

https://www.lesmis.com/london

 

Sorry, the "original production" was what I was referring to.

 

Nobody seems particularly enthusiastic about the new one. As for the stopgap concert performances ...

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2 minutes ago, Globaliser said:

 

Sorry, the "original production" was what I was referring to.

 

Nobody seems particularly enthusiastic about the new one. As for the stopgap concert performances ...

 

Thanks for clarifying.  :classic_smile:

 

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22 hours ago, Turtles06 said:

 

The English-language version of Les Miz  is in fact a British show (with its genesis in a French concept album and production).  It premiered in London in 1985.  It had a pre-Broadway run in Washington, D.C. in late 1986, and opened on Broadway in 1987.  It would be a great show to see in London.   

 

   

 

Oh yes, I knew that. I just meant that sometime people think it's somewhat cliche because it's so old. People want to see the new and edgy shows that are out. But it's been my favorite since I was a teenager! I even declined a Prom offer as a freshman to go see Les Miz in Chicago! LOL! And you know back then, you had to go to the box office to buy tickets, or by phone, and my dad got lucky enough to get us front row, center balcony!! It was amazing! So seeing it in London was just as awesome!

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26 minutes ago, kctwinmommy said:

 

Oh yes, I knew that. I just meant that sometime people think it's somewhat cliche because it's so old. People want to see the new and edgy shows that are out. But it's been my favorite since I was a teenager! I even declined a Prom offer as a freshman to go see Les Miz in Chicago! LOL! And you know back then, you had to go to the box office to buy tickets, or by phone, and my dad got lucky enough to get us front row, center balcony!! It was amazing! So seeing it in London was just as awesome!

 

OK, adding to the geek/nerd factor of this part of the thread...

 

In 1995, my wife and I were stationed in Germany, and on our last spring break (she's a teacher) we went to London with minimal plans. We walked up to the Palace Theater, and secured two tickets to Les Miserables, I think in the mezzanine (could have been balcony if there's no mezz) and were blown away...

 

I've tried Google and every site I can think of to find the cast for that April 1995 show, but it's been harder than you'd think. We've seen it twice more, at the Kennedy Center and I believe 2016 back on Broadway not long before it closed out. That performance featured John Owen-Jones as Jean Valjean. As my wife would tell you (to her chagrin), I could watch Les Miserables, with a good Valjean and Fantine, pretty much any time. In fact, Maryland Public Television had the 25th anniversary concert on as a fundraiser last night, and I watched the entire thing. Again. And I own the blueray...

 

(However, we're also planning to get Hamilton tickets for the West End over New Year's...)

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I am also interested in the OP's original question about specific tour companies.  We only have one day in London so for us the tour is the best option.  I know allowing more days would be ideal but we simply can't make it work on this trip.  So we are also leaning toward the all day Evan Evans tour which includes St Paul's tour, ToL tour, river cruise, changing of the guard, and city tour.

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On 6/6/2019 at 10:13 PM, markeb said:

As my wife would tell you (to her chagrin), I could watch Les Miserables, with a good Valjean and Fantine, pretty much any time. In fact, Maryland Public Television had the 25th anniversary concert on as a fundraiser last night, and I watched the entire thing. Again. And I own the blueray...

 

(However, we're also planning to get Hamilton tickets for the West End over New Year's...)

 

Put me on that Les Miz list as well.   I can't even recall now how many times I've seen it, starting with the OBC back in the mid-80s.   There have been some great Valjeans since then, but Colm Wilkinson was our first, and...  you know...you always remember your first.   :classic_smile:

 

Have you seen "Hamilton?"  The London production is fabulous.

 

Just in case any Les Miz fans have not seen the four Valjeans singing Bring Him Home at the end of the 25th Anniversary Concert:

 

 

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Getting back to the question asked, I would heartily recommend getting a one-day travelcard, a good guidebook, and do-it-yourself... Getting out and about in London yourself is so much more fun than looking at it from a bus 🙂

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2 minutes ago, Cotswold Eagle said:

Getting back to the question asked, I would heartily recommend getting a one-day travelcard, a good guidebook, and do-it-yourself... Getting out and about in London yourself is so much more fun than looking at it from a bus 🙂

 

And having been part of the diversion from the original question, I wholeheartedly agree! You can't see London in two days, and you can't experience it on a tour bus! It's one of the greatest places on earth to just "get lost" (figuratively, obviously).

 

A true story: The first time we were in London was 1995. I was stationed in Germany at the time, would be returning to the states that summer, we and took spring break (DW teaches) to go to London. We did the research you could do in those pre-internet days, selected our hotel from the DER Tours (German tour company) brochure, and flew to London. Our hotel was the Charing Cross Hotel. We set out with our Fodors or Frommers, toward the Thames, and ran straight into the London Marathon. That's when we discovered we were 10 minutes from Westminster Palace, Elizabeth Tower (and it's large hidden melodic occupant), Westminster Abbey, and were practically in Trafalgar Square. It was a great trip...

 

There's a lot to be said for just wandering sort of lost in London!

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On 6/17/2019 at 10:24 PM, wendyp247 said:

Yes, no,problem 

 

On 6/5/2019 at 10:24 AM, ducklite said:

I would NOT take a bus tour.  Ugh.  London traffic is terrible and you'll spend hours seeing nothing.  To put the size of greater London into perspective, it is about the size of Orange County, FL with about six times the population.

 

Instead make a list of the things you REALLY want to see and then narrow it down to 6-8.  Let us know what they are and we can route them and give you advice on when to go and how to get there.

 

Our top things to visit are Tower of London,Buckingham Palace, Parliament, Big Ben Thames boat ride, Harrods,Westminster Abbey, museums if we get a chance. Hotel is in Kensington. We will have two full days arriving 9:30 am the day before, just planning to get to hotel from Gatwick.  The next 2 days we'll be ready for sight seeing. The following day we are taking International Friends from London to Southampton with a stop at Stonehenge.  Thanks for your help. 

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5 minutes ago, wendyp247 said:

 

Our top things to visit are Tower of London,Buckingham Palace, Parliament, Big Ben Thames boat ride, Harrods,Westminster Abbey, museums if we get a chance. Hotel is in Kensington. We will have two full days arriving 9:30 am the day before, just planning to get to hotel from Gatwick.  The next 2 days we'll be ready for sight seeing. The following day we are taking International Friends from London to Southampton with a stop at Stonehenge.  Thanks for your help. 


As an FYI, your hotel will not likely be ready when you arrive--if you are on the non-stop MCO to LGW, taking mass transit you'll arrive at your hotel about noon or so, perhaps a bit earlier depending on the lines for immigration.

 

Are you staying in Kensington or South Kensington?

 

Do you actually want to tour Westminster, Buckingham Palace, Tower of London, and Parliment or just see them from the outside outside?  What days of the week and month will you be in London?  

 

I wouldn't just blow off your arrival day.  Drop your bags, have some lunch, and then take a walk to the Natural History Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum.  There's a pub that we like called the Greyhound around the corner from Whole Foods on Young St.  We also enjoy the Hereford Arms Pub on Gloucester St. a couple of blocks south of Cromwell Road.

 

Let me know if you actually want to tour all of those other places (I don't think time will permit, and depending on when you are visiting, there might no be tours on offer for Buckingham Palace and Parliment.)

 

 

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Thanks for your quick reply. We are staying at Holiday Inn London - Kensington Wrights Lane Kensington London GB W8 5SP, which I believe is South Kensington. The only thing that is a must is  to tour is Tower of London and I want skip the line tickets for that. We'll be in London August  arriving on Thursday to Gatwick and leaving Sunday. Since we aren't in a hurry to get to hotel, we are thinking of taking the National Express to Victoria Station and then cab to hotel. The train is only 30 minutes faster and more money.  WE were going to explore around our hotel that afternoon. I think the Victoria and Albert Museum isn't too far from our hotel. We were thinking of Victoria and Albert Museum also. We have been to Natural History Museums elsewhere and would like to see more thing pertinent to England. 

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Just now, wendyp247 said:

Thanks for your quick reply. We are staying at Holiday Inn London - Kensington Wrights Lane Kensington London GB W8 5SP, which I believe is South Kensington. The only thing that is a must is  to tour is Tower of London and I want skip the line tickets for that. We'll be in London August  arriving on Thursday to Gatwick and leaving Sunday. Since we aren't in a hurry to get to hotel, we are thinking of taking the National Express to Victoria Station and then cab to hotel. The train is only 30 minutes faster and more money.  WE were going to explore around our hotel that afternoon. I think the Victoria and Albert Museum isn't too far from our hotel. We were thinking of Victoria and Albert Museum also. We have been to Natural History Museums elsewhere and would like to see more thing pertinent to England. 

 

Just now, wendyp247 said:

 

 

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27 minutes ago, ducklite said:


As an FYI, your hotel will not likely be ready when you arrive--if you are on the non-stop MCO to LGW, taking mass transit you'll arrive at your hotel about noon or so, perhaps a bit earlier depending on the lines for immigration.

 

Are you staying in Kensington or South Kensington?

 

Do you actually want to tour Westminster, Buckingham Palace, Tower of London, and Parliment or just see them from the outside outside?  What days of the week and month will you be in London?  

 

I wouldn't just blow off your arrival day.  Drop your bags, have some lunch, and then take a walk to the Natural History Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum.  There's a pub that we like called the Greyhound around the corner from Whole Foods on Young St.  We also enjoy the Hereford Arms Pub on Gloucester St. a couple of blocks south of Cromwell Road.

 

Let me know if you actually want to tour all of those other places (I don't think time will permit, and depending on when you are visiting, there might no be tours on offer for Buckingham Palace and Parliment.)

 

 

 

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