St James', otherwise known as 'London’s Royal Village', has entertained both Royalty and the gentry for hundreds of years and this private walking tour gives you the chance to explore this historic neighbourhood. From the Tudors to the Blitz, London's history is evident everywhere on this walk.
Let me introduce you to the idea of the 'Royal Warrants' - as we walk down St James' Street, you will see them above some of the most exclusive shops in town. We will walk past where the Queen buys her hats and the Duke of Edinburgh his shoes. We'll saunter by St James’ Palace, the splendid setting for some of the most important events in Royal history and wander through St James’ Park, perhaps the grandest of the eight Royal parks in and around the capital. Next, to St James' Square, the centrepiece of Henry Jermyn's housing estate which became one of the most fashionable residential addresses for over a century.
St James' is also famous for its gentlemen's clubs and the shops that have been supplying the gents for centuries! As we wander along Jermyn Street (yes, it was named after Henry!), we'll pop into shops that have been around for nearly 300 years!
The Changing of the Guard ceremony is Royal pageantry at its very best and it is magical to watch the soldiers marching, often accompanied by their band, in a ceremony that is over 350 years old! But how can you tell one regiment from another? Join me on a Hobnob tour to find out and see this extraordinary event from an angle the crowds rarely discover....
But this is not all! During our tour we will wander past Clarence House, home to Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall, Buckingham Palace and Horse Guards. We may also be able to enjoy a tasting session in the wonderful Paxton & Whitfield cheese emporium! With a display of over 150 artisan cheeses, this is a treat not to be missed!
The Changing of the Guard ceremony is not on every day - it is always a morning event so let me check the schedule before we finalise a date for your tour. If you like the sound of the cheese tasting, I will need to check availability for that too.
This two and a half to three hour tour costs £15 per person; the minimum charge is £95. Groups should not be larger than 16. For more information about tours and prices please click on the ‘Tour Prices’ tag. If you are interested in booking a tour, please e-mail me using the contact form below to check my availability. Payment can then be made either by bank transfer or by using the PayPal button in the 'Tour Prices' section of this website. The tour will not be confirmed until I have received payment in full.
The meeting place for St James' private walking tours is under the Colonnade at the Ritz Hotel Piccadilly opposite Green Park underground station on Piccadilly.