James Bond in London

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James Bond’s London

The world’s most famous spy, 007, is a British classic anti-hero. Although his exploits take him all over the world, a lot of James Bond films rely heavily on filming in London. For the true Bond-fans among you, here is a list of some James Bond locations you can visit while in town!

The National Gallery
Film: Skyfall – It is here in Room 34 that James Bond first meets Q, who supplies him with a pistol.
Nearest Station: Charing Cross or Leicester Square

Somerset House
Film: Tomorrow Never Dies and Goldeneye – Somerset House doubles as the War Office in TND and sees James Bond pulling up outside in his Aston Martin DB5. In Goldeneye the giant centre courtyard nestled in the middle of Somerset House was played off as a courtyard in St. Petersburg!
Nearest Station: Charing Cross or Temple

The Reform Club
Film: Die Another Day and Quantam of Solace – James Bond’s fictional club, Blades, first appeared on our screens in DAD where Pierce Brosnan fenced and had a brief conversation with Madonna! In  QoS the Reform Club stands in for the Foreign Office.
Nearest Station: Charing Cross, Green Park or Piccadilly Circus

Vauxhall Cross – The SIS Headquarters
Film: Goldeneye, The World is Not Enough, Die Another Day, Skyfall – The real home of Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service, the building at Vauxhall Cross is famous the world over as the home of MI6 in the Bond films. Although destroyed in Skyfall, visitors will still find it standing safely in one piece on the riverbanks of the Thames.
Nearest Station: Vauxhall

Whitehall
Film: Octopussy, A View of Kill, License to Kill, Skyfall – Whitehall is the real-life home to British government and has featured in a few Bond films. James Bond has been briefed ‘inside’ these buildings, and the major thoroughfare here was shutdown for the filming of Skyfall, where Bond not only runs down the road past the government buildings, but also stands on the top near the end of the film, overlooking the Whitehall district where he meets Mrs. Moneypenny.
Nearest Station: Charing Cross or Westminster

And a couple locations that weren’t in films, but still have a place in James Bond history!
Duke’s Hotel
Bond Connection: Duke’s Hotel was a popular haunt of Bond creator Ian Fleming. It was at the bar here that Ian first thought of the infamous “shaken, not stirred” line. It’s also said that both Pierce Brosnan and Sean Connery celebrated their casting as James Bond with, of course, a martini. The bar is still open, still pouring martinis, and can be visited by Bond…or civilians just like us.
Nearest Station: Green Park or Piccadilly Circus

Buckingham Palace
Bond Connection: In case you missed the widely-celebrated Opening Ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics, Daniel Craig as James Bond travelled to Buckingham Palace. Once inside (followed by a pair of Welsh corgis), he met with the Queen – who then travelled with him to the Olympic Park and then parachuted out of a helicopter into the Olympic Stadium! If you haven’t seen it yet, treat yourself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1AS-dCdYZbo
Nearest Station: Green Park or Victoria

27 Green Street
Bond Connection: This fabulous townhouse was the birthplace of Ian Fleming on the 28th of May 1908.
Nearest Station: Marble Arch

16 Victoria Square
Bond Connection: Fleming moved into this property in March of 1953 and it was here that he wroted 12 of his James Bond novels, before dying here in 1964.
Nearest Station: Victoria

Haunted London Underground Stations

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Haunted London Underground Stations

The London Undergroundtransports millions of visitors every year, and the trains travel enough miles to circumnavigate the globe over and over…and over again! It’s only at the very early hours of the mornings and the late hours of night that you may find yourself alone in a tube carriage or on the platform. But are you really alone? Legend has it that the London Underground network plays host to a number of ghosts – spirits doomed to haunt the tube lines for all eternity… For a bit of a spook, or just for a laugh, check out our list of haunted London Underground Stations!

Bethnal Green [Central Line] – Bethnal Green Station was the site of a terrible WWII tragedy. During the air raids and bombings of London in the ‘Blitz’ it was common for Londoners to hide in London Underground stations and tunnels for protection. However, at Bethnal Green Station 173 people died in a crush when panicked Londoners tried to force their way into the station, trampling and suffocating one another during their efforts to reach safety. – It is said that today the sounds of women and children can be heard when the station is particularly quiet and the haunting echoes of their cries and screams continue to this very day.

Liverpool Street [Central, Hammersmith & City, Circle and Metropolitan Lines] – Liverpool Street Station is where all the CCTV footage of every station on the Underground network is collected and reviewed. In the year 2000, a Line Controller who was watching the footage noticed a man dressed in white overalls standing on the East-Bound Central Line platform…despite the fact that it was 2:00am and the station was closed! The Station Supervisor went to the platform to investigate and once there, found no trace of the man whatsoever. He had simply vanished into thin air, never to be seen again.

Holborn [Central and Piccadilly Lines] – One of the most enduring hauntings on the London Underground takes place at Holborn Station. It is said that the ghost of mummified Egyptian on display in the nearby British Museum haunts the tunnels of Holborn Station (as well as the now disused former British Museum Tube Station), unsettled and seeking revenge for the display of their earthly remains to the public.

Covent Garden [Piccadilly Line] – Covent Garden is home to one of the few identifiable ghosts on the Network. The ghost of actor William Terriss, who trod the boards of Covent Garden’s numerous theatres and was murdered at the nearby Adelphi Theatre, has routinely been spotted at the station and identified by those who were later shown pictures of the actor after reporting their encounter with a ghostly figure.

Kings Cross [Piccadilly, Northern, Victoria, Circle, Metropolitan, Hammersmith & City Lines] – In 1987, Kings Cross Station was the site of a devastating fire which killed 31 people. But it was decades later in the 1990’s when the ghost of a crying young woman was reported wandering the tunnels of the station. The figure is heard screaming and crying as she runs past surprised commuters – even passing through them – before she disappears.

Aldgate [Metropolitan Line] – It is said that Aldgate Station was built on top of a plague pit which was in use during the devastating plague of 1665. Strange sounds and mysterious moving objects have often been reported here. The most engaging example of the haunting took place when an electrician at the station was electrocuted – but did not die, despite the fatal voltage passing through his body. Colleagues who had been watching claimed that shortly before his electrocution, the ghostly transparent image of a woman was seen stroking his hair…

Bank/Monument [Central, Northern, Circle, District Lines] – Bank and Monument Stations are connected to one another through pedestrian tunnels, but it is the Bank side of the Station that plays host to one tragic historical tale, and one ghostly legend. At the height of the Blitz, a tragedy took place at Bank Station when, on the 11th of January 1941, a bomb fell from German aircraft into the station before exploding, killing 50 and injuring over 50 more. It is said that the cries and moans of those killed can still be heard by those using the station at quiet times. – The second haunting is said to be the ghost of a woman named Sarah Whitehead. In the 19th century, Sarah’s brother – a worker at the Bank of England – was arrested for fraud and forgery and, once found guilty, executed. The death of her brother sent Sarah mad and for decades she would come to the Bank of England dressed entirely in black, asking after her brother. Although Sarah died over a century ago, a wandering woman dressed in black has been reported weeping through the station by commuters and workers alike.

Embankment [Northern, Bakerloo, District, Circle Lines] – The hauntings reported at Embankment Underground Station actually takes place in a tunnel that is not accessible to the public. Underground employees have, for decades, reported strange experiences in a tunnel known as Pages Walk. This tunnel is now disused by the public but Underground workers still have access to it. Numerous employees have complained of feeling watched, encountering cold spots, as well as seeing doors open and shut when nobody else was present.

Farringdon [Circle, Metropolitan, Hammersmith & City Lines] – Farringdon Station’s ghost has been identified by witnesses as a young girl. Historians believe that the apparition here is that of a 13-year-old named Annie who was murdered nearby in 1758, in a building that was later demolished to make way for the Station. Spotted by employees and visitors alike, the girl is often heard and not seen – her screams reportedly echoing out through the Station tunnels.

Elephant & Castle [Bakerloo Line] – Elephant & Castle is another station with two hauntings. The first has never been seen; only heard. Known as ‘The Runner’ station staff working after closing hours have reported the sounds of running coming…and going, but the owner of the feet has never been seen. – The second is that of a young woman who has been spotted by commuters as well as station staff. She is seen boarding a Northern-bound train but disappears as soon as the doors close.

Guide Spotlight: Boston’s Beth

Posted by & filed under A Blog on Visiting New York City, Berlin, Boston, Charleston, Chicago, London, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Washington DC.

Free Tours by Foot thought you should know more about who we are! Our tours would not be so highly rated if it weren’t for our guides – the passion, knowledge and fun they bring to our tours. We’ll be featuring more information about our great guides in each city over the coming months.


Boston Tour guide BethBeth has loved to hear and tell the great stories from American history for as long as she can remember.  Beth has taught Middle and High School History and English, started a food co-op, and helped to start a storytelling festival in her hometown’s public schools.  She has been a tour guide at Westpoint Academy as well as with Historic Hudson Valley where the Rockefeller Estate was her specialty.  Beth has jumped whole- heartedly into her adopted home of Boston:  what town could be better for heroic and inspiring stories from history?  She’s got a husband and three grown kids, two cats, and one adorable grandbaby: story-listener in training!  When not strolling the streets of her Boston neighborhood Jamaica Plain, she’s likely to enjoy the beauty and rich historic vibes around Cape Cod, the North Shore, the North End, and Cambridge.  Beth likes reading, museum diving, and traveling far afield.

  • Why did you decide to become a tour guide?

Some of the best times I had teaching was during field trips:  179 days in the classroom and one in the field.  Why not reverse that?  What could be better than teaching right where history took place:  more fun and more meaningful for them and for me.  Then there’s meeting people from all around the country, from all over the world, having all my stereotypes blown to bits…PLUS, walking, being out in the sunshine hopefully, but even when the weather is harsh or disappointing being outdoors and moving feels good.

  • What is the best tour you’ve ever taken – anywhere in the world?

Nazareth, Israel.  The tour guide was passionate.  She LOVED that town, and the town is unique because it’s made mostly Arab with a large Christian minority yet surrounded and part of the Jewish state.  The Christian holy sites were good, and we did them on our own. This tour showed us a side of the town we could never have known:  the shopkeepers, alleyways packed with the people’s real lives, the food, the tiny carpentry shops and gigantic spice shops.

  • When you have friends/family visit, what’s the one place you make sure they see/thing to do?

The North End:  the combination of historic sites from the Revolution with authentic Italian culture and wonderful food everywhere you turn.

  • Do you have a favorite tour group memory?

After the wintry tours I’d invite the visitors to go for a hot drink with me. Sitting in a cafe with interesting, happy people who’ve enjoyed the tour, enjoyed meeting each other, and want to extend the experience.

  • If you weren’t a tour guide, what would you be doing?

Underwater archaeology!

 

London Princess Diana

Princess Diana

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Princess Diana is known all around the world, and many visitors to London have a particular interest in the late princess. From her wedding to Prince Charles in 1981 to her untimely death in a Paris car crash in 1997, Princess Diana captured the public’s imagination like no royal had before. Remembered fondly both here in the United Kingdom and abroad, Diana’s memory is still very much alive. But how much do you know about Lady Diana Spencer? Read on for some interesting facts about the life of this remarkable woman.

- Diana wasn’t the first Spencer girl Prince Charles dated. – Diana’s elder sister, Sara Spencer, had a short relationship with Prince Charles before he fell in love with Diana herself.

- She had links to the Throne before she was married. – Diana’s ancestry can be traced back to the 17th century and she is actually a direct descendant of King Charles II.

- Diana’s wedding to Prince Charles was the largest for a Royal yet. – Prince Charles and Diana were wed in St. Pauls’ Cathedral, because it had more space than Westminster Abbey. The wedding had a global televised audience of 750million and it is estimated that 600,000 people lined the streets to watch her process through London to the church.

- She is one of only a few ‘Princesses of Wales.’ – The title is customarily an honorific one, given to the wife of a Prince of Wales. There have been only 10 Princesses of Wales since the title was created in 1301.

- She worked. – Before her engagement to Prince Charles, Diana was working as an assistant in a children’s playgroup.

- Her divorce made her wealthy, but took her title. – After her divorce from Princes Charles, she lost the title ‘Her Royal Highness’ but also gained a $22.5million lump sum and around $600,000 a year to maintain her ‘private office.’

- She is credited with removing the stigma around AIDS patients. – Diana, always involved in charity, was the first public figure in the UK to be picture holding the hand of a person with AIDS. This small moment changed the way thousands of people understood the disease, and helped clear a stigma attached to those suffering from AIDS themselves.

- Her gravesite is not open to the public. – Diana was buried on an island in the middle of a lake at her ancestral home of Althorp House in Northamptonshire. On private land, her grave cannot be visited by the public.

- At the time of her death, she was dating Dodi Fayed, heir to the Harrods owner, Mohamed Al Fayed. – Speculation surrounds whether Diana and Dodi were going to become engaged, or even married, but the two were in a romantic relationship at the time of their death. Dodi’s father, Mohamed, has been very outspoken about the death of his son and Diana, blaming a conspiracy to murder them both to prevent their marriage.

- Elton John rewrote a classic song as a tribute to her. – Elton John and Diana were good friends and Elton was invited to play piano/sing at her funeral. John chose to rewrite his song “Candle in the Wind” to dedicate it specifically to Diana, removing all references to Marilyn Monroe, the original subject of the song. He has since stated he will never perform the 1997 reworded Diana version without express permission from either of her children. He continues to perform the Marilyn Monroe original at concerts.

+++To learn more about the royal family, come and join our Westminster walking tour or read our other blogs on William and Kate, Prince Charles or Prince Harry or learn more about Royal Palaces in London! You might also like our self-guided Royal London Walk to explore on your own!+++

London Royal family Will and Kate

Prince William and Kate’s Wedding

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Prince William and Kate’s Wedding was a once in a lifetime event for many Londoners and visitors. The most watched and most remembered wedding of this generation is, without a doubt, that of Kate Middleton and Prince William. Tying the knot in April 2011, the wedding was watched by millions all over the globe. Such a huge, historical event, there are a lot of facts and figures surrounding the wedding, so read on for 10 things you probably didn’t know about the wedding of Wills and Kate.

- The couple received a unique gift from the Mayor of London – It was reported that Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, gifted the couple with a tandem bike.

- Kate and William broke tradition on their wedding night. – Traditionally, royal couples have left London on their wedding night to begin their honeymoon. Wills and Kate, however, spent their first married night at Buckingham Palace.

- The couple did have some privacy. – The cutting of the cake was not performed in front of professional cameras and no photos have been published of this event.

- Virgin Airlines helped passengers celebrate. – Flights on Virgin Airlines running the day of the wedding held ‘street parties’ for passengers. Tea and wedding cake was served and some airline staff dressed as wedding guests.

- Wedding bells DEFINITELY rang. – The bells of Westminster Abbey went into “full peal” after the ceremony which lasts more than 3 hours with no sequence being repeated.

- Kate had something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue. – Old: A traditional carrickmacross lace sewn onto her dress. New: Custome-made diamond oak leaf earrings (in reference to her new Cambridge family crest). Borrowed: The Queen’s Cartier tiara. Blue: A ribbon sewn into the interior of her dress.

- Kate was the oldest “spinster” to ever marry an heir to the throne. – At age 29 on her wedding day, Kate became the oldest woman to never be previously married to wed an heir to the throne.

- Only Kate wears a wedding ring. – Made from a piece of Welsh gold presented to Queen Elizabeth II in 1992, Kate Middleton’s wedding ring was custom made. William, on the other hand, chose not to receive a wedding ring at all.

- William’s wedding gift from Queen Elizabeth II was given BEFORE the wedding. – That morning the Queen created William the Duke of Cambridge, Earl of Strathearn and Baron Carrickfergus.

- Kate didn’t know where she was going on her Honeymoon. – In order to throw off the press and paparazzi, the honeymoon location for the new couple was kept top secret. So secret, in fact, that Kate had no idea where she was going, other than that it was “somewhere warm.” Eventually they spent 10 days in the Seychelles.

+++To learn more about the royal family, join our Westminster walking tour or read our other blogs on Queen Elizabeth, or William and Kate, Prince Charles or Prince Harry or learn more about Royal Palaces in London! We also have a self-guided Royal London Walk to explore on your own!+++

Famous people born in London

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London is home to celebrities who are famous the world over. However, there are some recognisable names you may not realise were born in our capital city! So for visitors or locals alike, here is an overview of famous people born in London.

Charlie Chaplin – Born 16th April 1889. Actor and filmmaker of the silent era. Became a ‘household name’ with his character the Tramp, based on his impoverished upbringing and life in a workhouse in London.

Alfred Hitchcock – Born 13th August 1899. Film director and producer, known for his work in the horror/thriller genre, including his legendary work Psycho.

Bob Hope – Born  29th May 1903. Actor and comedian best known for his legendarily long career and service performing for the USO – entertainment for active service American military personnel, having made 57 tours throughout his career.

Angela Lansbury – Born 16th October 1926. Although a Broadway and film star, many younger generations know her as Jessica Fletcher in the long-running series Murder, She Wrote.

Elizabeth Taylor – Born 27th February 1932. Made her acting debut in National Velvet and went on to star in dozens of films, amassing numerous Golen Globe and Academy Awards. Was later well known for her love of expensive jewellery and her turbulent personal life, including 7 marriages to 8 different men.

Joan Collins – Born 23rd May 1933. Actress best known for her role as Alexis Carrington Colby in Dynasty for which she won a golden globe and got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Anna Wintour – Born 3rd November 1949. Editor-In-Chief of American Vogue, Anna is best known as the basis for Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada.

Daniel Day-Lewis – Born 9th April 1957. Actor best known for My Left Foot for which he won one of three Academy Awards. The only male actor in history to have three wins in the lead actor category at the Oscars, the third of which he won for Lincoln in 2012.

E. L. James – Born 7th March 1963. The pen name of Erika Mitchell, E. L. James burst onto the international literary stage with the publication of her Fifty Shades trilogy.

Slash – Born July 23rd 1965. Stage name of Saul Hudson, a musician and songwriter best known as former lead guitarist of Guns N’ Roses. Considered one of the greatest guitarists of all time, his most notable work is likely his introductory riff in Sweet Child o’ Mine.

Kiefer Sutherland – Born 21st December 1966. An actor best known as Jack Bauer on the television series 24.

Damian Lewis – Born 11th February 1971. Actor best known for his portrayal of Marine Sergeant Nicholas Brody in Homeland for which he won both an Emmy and Golden Globe. He is also known for his portrayal of Major Richard Winters in Band of Brothers.

Steve-O – Born 13th June 1974. A stunt performer and TV personality, Steve-O is best known for his work on the Jackass television series and films of the same name.

Paloma Faith – Born 21st July 1981. Singer-songwriter known for her top twenty hits Stone Cold Sober, New York, and Only Love Can Hurt Like This.

Mischa Barton – Born 24th January 1986. Made her acting debut in All My Children but is now best known for her role as Marissa Cooper in The O.C.

London St. Pauls

Things To Do In London on a Rainy Day

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Are you looking for things to do in London on a rainy day? It’s no secret that the weather in London can be rather unpredictable, but it wouldn’t be London without a little bit of rain! Although we get our fair share of glorious sunny days, there are also those that are wet, wet, wet. So what to do when the weather turns bad during your time in London? Read on for our list of things to do in London when it rains!

Visit a Museum or Gallery – London is full of museums that are fun for the whole family! Educational, entertaining, and dry, you’ve got a plethora to choose from. To decide which museum is best for you check out our blog posts on Free London Museums, or Museums in the City Centre of London, or maybe even London’s Medical Museums. For art fans here are our suggestions on Free Art Galleries in London or why not visit the National Gallery of Art.

Go to Platform 9 ¾ – For Harry Potter fans from all over the world, Kings Cross Station is a must-visit destination. Platform 9 ¾ is available for witches and wizards to visit, as well as a great photo opportunity and fabulous gift shop perfect for true Potterheads. Read our blog on more Harry Potter locations in London.

Visit the Tower of London – The Tower of London is a mix of indoor and outdoors exhibitions but the doom and gloom of a rainy London day sets the perfect atmosphere for the historic, gruesome and fascinating Tower experience. Check out our guide to visiting The Tower of London.

Lock Yourself In…Then Try to Get Out! – One of the biggest activities to take London by storm over the last year has been locked-room escape games. Fun for visitors and Londoners alike, these companies will lock you and your friends into a room filled with clues, red herrings, puzzles and games and leave you to try to figure how to get out! Check out the two best ones around: Clue Quest & Hint Hunt.

See a Film – At the Prince Charles Cinema, guests can watch classics such as The Sound of Music or the Lion King while the entire audience sings along. At the IMAX, some of the largest cinema screens in the world display current hit films as well as 3D experiences aimed at both adults and children. Check out what’s on at: Prince Charles Cinema / IMAX.

Go Shopping  – If you want to hit the major shopping district of Oxford Street, or you want to stroll through the glamourous halls of Harrod’s, London has plenty of shopping options for when the weather turns bad! Check out our list of the best places to shop in town.

Take Tea – A great way to while away a rainy afternoon is the classic British afternoon tea. Treat yourself to some silver service at places like Fortnum & Mason and take afternoon tea the traditional way – hours of luxurious eating, drinking, and chatting all while the rain pours down outside. See our post about afternoon tea in London or why not check out the Twinings Tea Shop in the City of London.

Rub Some Brass – Hidden away below St. Martin-in-the-Fields Church by Trafalgar Square sits the London Brass Rubbing Centre. With nearly 100 different brasses available to choose from, both kids and adults can rub images of medieval knights and ladies, fanciful creatures, religious figures, and even Shakespearian characters. Prices for brass rubbings depend on the size of your chosen piece but in general runs between £4.50 to £15.00 which means it’s a relatively inexpensive London experience. Get more info at their website: St. Martin-In-The-Fields

Do What You Were Going to Do, Anyway!  – Bad weather means visitors will be following advice like the list we have set out above which means rainy days can be crowded museums, shops and pubs and empty attractions like The Tower, St. Paul’s Cathedral, the London Eye, River Thames boat tours, or walking tours. So if you’ve got your waterproof jacket and some warm shoes, just stick with your original plan! Chances are you may enjoy the benefit of fewer people and shorter queues wherever you go.

Go on a Tour!Our tours run rain or shine, so open up your umbrellas and come along! It’s really rare to have a day of non-stop constant rain…and even when we do, we’ll have a great time exploring the town together!

London Pie

Where can I eat the Best Pie in London

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When it comes to British cuisine, fish & chips is at the top of the list, but coming in a very strong second-place is a traditional British Pie! It’s not a pizza or a sweet pastry or cake, it’s a baked dish filled with savoury meat or vegetables covered in dough or mashed potatoes. So where to go in London when you want a great pie? Read on to find out our recommendations!

Pieminister – Beginning life in Bristol, Pieminister burst onto the London cuisine scene with their award-winning pies around 2006. Their pies are so good they were sold at Harrods and Harvey Nichols…and were even served at the Queen’s Christmas Party! Now dotted all over town, Pieminister is the top dog in a list of tought pie-contenders. (A, B)

The Princess of Wales – This relatively unassuming pub serves up some of the best pies in town. Located in easy distance of the West End and the River Thames, the Princess of Wales dishes up some of the largest plates of pie and mash you’ll find in town. A perfect stop for lunch on our All In One Tour! (C)

Manze’s – More than a pie shop, Manze’s is a London institution. The Manze family has been dishing up pies since 1902 and now has three branches in the capital. The same recipes, handed down generation to generation mean that the pies here are some of the best, and most authentic, in London. (D)

The Guinea Grill – Posh pies are what The Guinea is all about. Located in the exclusive and expensive Mayfair area, the Guinea sits on a site that has been occupied by a pub since the 15th century! Award winning pies are served up containing, or alongside some of the best British beef located in town. (E)

Maureen’s – Although Maureen may no longer work here, here son Jason is keeping his mum’s delicious legacy well and truly alive. The pies made here are so good that they are shipped out daily throughout the United Kingdom and even internationally to Spain, Italy and South Africa! Luckily for Londoners, we need only head to the East End (the traditional home of pie & mash) to enjoy these delicious little delights. (F)

The Old Bank of England – Picking up on the legend of Sweeny Todd – “The Demon Barber of Fleet Street” – this Fleet Street locale offers up classic British pies…with no surprise ingredients! A great location before/after our City Tour, The Old Bank of England is a beautiful Victorian pub that is worth visiting even when not on the hunt for a pie. (G)

G. Kelly – Dishing up pies since 1937, G. Kelly’s pies are all hand made using a decades old recipe. Everything here is baked in house and the surroundings are charmingly art deco. In addition to traditional pies, eels are also on the menu here. And for the vegans among you – there are pies here for you, too! (H)

The Windmill – This Mayfair hot spot is so good at pies, it actually has a pie club boasting thousands of members! Award winning steak pies, standard favourites like fish pies, vegetarian options and constantly changing seasonal pies means that The Windmill has something for everyone. (I)

Goddard’s at Greenwich – Tradition is the name of the game at Goddard’s. Dishing up pie and mash based on original recipes from the 18th century. In addition to the impressive list of pies on offer, Goddard’s also serves traditional east London cuisine such as jellied and stewed eels for those who are up for something a bit different! (J)

Piebury Corner – Holloway Road, a northern primarily-residential area of London, is not normally regarded as a foodie’s destination. But Piebury Corner is changing all of that! Beginning by serving home-made pies to hungry football fans heading to the nearby Emirates Stadium to see the Arsenal football matches, today guests can still buy pies from their stall on match days, but can also enjoy their pies at their new premises. Their menu is vast with traditional and vegetarian pies, delicious side options and a choice of gravies. This is definitely one that caters for the picky eaters you may know! (K)

+++Work up an appetite on one of our many walking tours of London!+++

London Little Venice

Visit London’s Little Venice

Posted by & filed under London.

Have you heard of London’s Little Venice? Little Venice is tucked away in the residential neighbourhood of Maida Vale. Both the Regent’s Canal and the Grand Union Canal meet together here, creating a small oasis in this northern part of town, and giving the area the name of Little Venice.

Filled with narrow boats and alongside charming pubs and tree-lined streets, Little Venice was relatively unscathed during the bombings in World War Two, which means the area retains its original Georgian buildings. Quite an upscale area, the houses here are big and beautiful and lend a charming feeling to this quiet pocket of London.

What is there to do in Little Venice?
For something cheap and cheerful, treat yourself to a walk along the canal! It is possible to begin your journey in Little Venice and walk along the water all the way into Camden. The walk is beautiful and will take you through Regent’s Park, as well as through London Zoo – actually giving you glimpses into some of the animal habitats inside.
Or spend a few pounds and take a boat. The London Waterbus Company has regular services of longboats traveling up and down the canal. Away from the tourists and crowds of the centre of town, this can be a unique and special activity to partake in. Check out the London Waterbus Company website for more details.

If you want to catch a show – you can do that here, too! The Canal Café Theatre has performances, comedy and plays regularly and is far cheaper than other theatres in the West End. Also, there is the Puppet Theatre Barge which is pretty self-explanatory! Puppet theatre performed…on a barge!.

It’s also possible to eat and drink well in this neighbourhood. The Bridge House Pub here serves amazing meals and great drinks to match. There is also the Warwick Castle, a popular haunt for locals, it’s tucked down a small side street in Little Venice and is a great place to while away the hours.

How do I get to Little Venice?

Don’t worry, it is not that far, in fact you can easily get there by tube or bus.
Nearest Underground Stations: Warwick Avenue.
Buses: 6, 16, 18, 46, 98, 187, 332, 414

 

Guide Spotlight: New Orleans’ Natalie

Posted by & filed under A Blog on Visiting New York City, Berlin, Boston, Charleston, Chicago, London, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Washington DC.

Free Tours by Foot thought you should know more about who we are! Our tours would not be so highly rated if it weren’t for our guides – the passion, knowledge and fun they bring to our tours. We’ll be featuring more information about our great guides in each city over the coming months.


No, you aren’t seeing double – Natalie and her twin sister, Joanne, are both tour guides in New Orleans!

Natalie is originally from Australia, but first came to New Orleans during Mardi Gras in 2005. Her sister, Jo, had visited to city before, and had told Natalie how much she’d love it and was right! Natalie immediately fell in love with NOLA, returning many times to visit. She eventually met her (now) husband, who is a New Orleans native and moved here permanently.

  • Why did you decide to become a tour guide?

I decided to become a guide as I like to share what I love about New Orleans with all of our visitors! (plus the hours are better than bar tending!)

  • What is the best tour you’ve ever taken – anywhere in the world?

When I was 17, I took a 3 week bus tour through Europe. While I’m not sure it the best tour I’ve ever taken, it certainly gave me a passion for travel and history and opened my eyes to the possibility of taking on tour guiding as a career.

  • When you have friends/family visit, what’s the one place you make sure they see/thing to do?

Dinner a Adolpho’s on Frenchman St. in Marigny, and then music next door at the Spotted Cat.

  • If you weren’t a tour guide, what would you be doing?

I already work in the fitness industry part time, so I’d probably be a full time personal trainer or something similar. But I definitely like meeting lots of new and interesting people from all over the world, so I see myself always working in tourism in some capacity.