Bored of wandering around museums and traipsing through the same tourist spots? Seen plenty of quaint pubs and shopped until you dropped? Here are five of the more unusual things to do in London:
1. Watch a play at the Globe Theatre
The Globe in Southwark is a chance to experience an authentic Shakespearean production in an open-air theatre. The Globe also offers educational events and tours to offer an insight into the world of Shakespeare and the city as it would have been in his time, as well as information on the theatre’s reconstruction and continuing development.
2. Go mudlarking down the Thames
Mudlarking was popular during the 18th and 19th centuries amongst the poor of the city looking for small treasures to sell. They would wander along the riverbank sifting through the muds and sands for any trinkets that may have fallen off boats, with iron, coal and rope considered excellent finds. Because Thames mud is anaerobic it preserves objects well. Today mudlarking is no longer the recognised profession it was but more of an amateur hobby. That doesn’t stop many people taking it very seriously, and indeed if you want to go digging for items to keep you will need a licence. The Museum of London should be informed of any items of archaeological interest. Take sensible precautions and go in a group.
3. Take a tour at the Royal Opera House
The Royal Opera House offer a range of tours to help you gain an appreciation and understanding of this iconic Covent Garden institution. You may have the chance to watch ballet dancers in rehearsal, get to grips with backstage technology or view authentic costumes worn by famous performers.
4. Learn circus skills
Ever wanted to fly on the trapeze or throw knives? At Circus Space in Shoreditch it is possible to learn traditional circus skills including trapeze, tightwire walking, juggling and acrobatic balancing, or Western skills such as lassoing and knife throwing.
5. Go bird spotting
It may not be the first thing you think of doing when you think of London, but the WWT London Wetland Centre in Barnes is a wonderful and unique oasis for bird spotting. It has several different habitats offering the chance to see wading birds, including the rare bittern, and a variety of other wildlife.