London is a city you can visit hundreds of times, but actually know very little about its history. So, when we were invited by Fat Tire Bike Tours to take part in a London Bike Tour Experience, we jumped at the chance to learn a little more about the stories behind our Capital.
Evie and I arrived at the Fat Tire Offices on the edge of Kensington Gardens, where we met our friendly instructor Reese and the rest of our group. We were then kitted up with bikes, which both Evie and I had not ridden for quite a few years. Hoping that the old saying ‘it’s just like riding a bike’ was true, we made a start and headed towards Kensington gardens. (In case you are wondering, it really is true; you never forget how to ride a bike).
The Royal Bike Tour is great for anyone who is a bit nervous to ride on the London roads, as most of the tour involves cycling through London’s beautiful parks in designated cycle lanes, making the experience perfect for families with younger children or less-confident cyclists.
The tour route took us through the heart of London, passing Buckingham Palace, The Houses of Parliament, 10 Downing Street, Kensington Palace and more, with a royal theme running throughout. One of the biggest benefits of touring on a bike is that you get to cover a lot more ground than on a walking tour, allowing us to see a lot of London in a short space of time.
We stopped frequently at central points, where Reese told us a bit about our surroundings. It seems every inch of London has a story behind it, so having a tour guide who is both enthusiastic and knowledgeable enhances any London visit. We learnt a lot at each spot and came home with some pretty fun facts; did you know that the back halves of the Lions at Trafalgar Square are actually designed after a Labrador dog? Nope, neither did we.
Our tour included a stop at Trafalgar square, where we were able to take a seat and have some refreshments. But, with plenty more of London to see, 30 minutes later we were ready to set-off again. The second half of the tour was just as entertaining and informative as the first; our stops included the Royal Albert Hall, Hyde Park, The Princess Diana Memorial and more.
The pace of cycling is really relaxed throughout the entire tour, so you don’t need to be an avid cycler to take part. Over the course of 4 hours, we saw London’s finest sights, learnt a lot and had fun in the process. Many thanks to Reese and all the staff at Fat Tire Bike Tours for making our afternoon so enjoyable!