Our Black Cab tour starts in Central London and takes us through the western suburbs of the capital. Even here our tour is packed with history, for nearby is where Julius Caesar crossed with his armies over 2,000 years ago and where the Vikings clashed with the English. We pass Heathrow airport, once a vast heath over which the coaches hurried on to Bristol or down to the ancient Roman city of Exeter. We can hear about a gallant highwayman who once danced with a lady on the heath.
Coaching Road to Bath: Avebury, Lacock & Bath
Our Coaching Road to Bath Tour is the perfect complement to our Stonehenge tour, visiting the World Heritage Site at Avebury, the largest prehistoric stone circle in the world. Travelling in a tradional London Black Cab, we'll take the old coaching road from Hungerford and drive through picturesque thatched villages and ancient market towns. We'll see a white horse carved in the hillside, ancient monuments and hear some fascinating stories. The tour includes a walking tour of ancient Avebury and 13th-century Lacock Village, plus a driving tour of the Roman city of Bath.
Passing Windsor Castle (the largest occupied castle in the world) we turn off the motorway and join the historic coaching road to Bath at the town of Hungerford—the last town in Britain to celebrate the Hocktide Ceremony, a time of great celebrations and revelry. Along with Stow-on-the-Wold iHungerford claims to be the antiques capital of England, and in the nearby 'Bear at Hungerford' pub a pivotal event took place during England's Glorious Revolution of 1688.
We drop down into the town of Marlborough, its charter granted by King John in 1206. The town boasts the widest street in England to accommodate the markets. The splendid Georgian houses on either side of the road show a remarkable variation of style and on this street you'll find a tea shop where the Princess of Wales bought her cakes during breaks at school whilst attending nearby Marlborough College.
We'll stop briefly on a ridge a few miles out of town to view 'The Sanctuary', an ancient enclosure from where two lines of stones wound their way in towards the ancient stone circle of Avebury, 1½ miles (2½ kilometres) away. In the distance we'll see one of the longest long barrows in the country, 'West Kennet Long Barrow' the origins of which go back over 5,000 years.
A short drive in the London Black Cab will take us to a fantastic view of Silbury Hill, the largest pre-historic man made earth work in Europe. We will hear how this remarkable structure was made and why it was built.
From here it's a short drive to Avebury Stone Circle—the largest prehistoric stone circle in the world. Unlike Stonehenge there will be an opportunity to go right up to the stones where your guide will give you a talk on how the site was built and what purpose it served. We will also try to experience the power of the stones using some dowsing rods, and you can have a go yourself! Avebury also has a medieval church and the Henge Shop is an ideal place to browse for things such as books on crop circles, magic and dowsing.
Our Black Cab tour continues by the Marlborough Downs, a group of hills that separate Avebury from Stonehenge. We'll see a horse carved in the hillside beneath an ancient Iron Age fortress, on top of which there is a huge obelisk. Further down the road we'll pass through Cherhill, a place of notoriety in the 1700s for its highway robbers, one of whom robbed his own attorney of the fee he had given him. Nearby is Bowood House, where the element of oxygen, and photosynthesis were discovered.
Next we shall pass through the delightful thatched village of Sandy Lane before descending into the medieval village of Lacock. The village is almost entirely owned by the National Trust and has a remarkable collection of buildings dating from the 1200s onwards. The abbey at Lacock is where the negative photography was invented and where we will hear a romantic story that had a happy ending. Lacock is used extensively in films such as Thomas Hardy adaptations, Charles Dickens, Jane Austen and Harry Potter. Again we will have a walking tour through the town before lunch.
Next stop is the Georgian city of Bath and because we're in a taxi we have access to roads that are otherwise closed to other tour groups. Here we will take in all the sites for which Bath is famous including the Paragon, the Circus, The Assembly Rooms, The Royal Crescent, Queen's Square, Pulteney Bridge and Sally Lunn's.
After escorting you into the Roman Baths we will drive up Lansdowne Hill, past Beckford's Tower and along the edge of the Cotswolds. On a clear day we may just be able to see the the principality of Wales.
Add Coaching Road to Bath: Avebury, Lacock & Bath to your itinerary
Itinerary so far...
Type: Black Cab Tour
Exclusives: Transportation in an iconic London Black Cab
Price: From GBP 870
Languages: English, French, German, Dutch, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese: other languages available on request
Pick up: Free pick up and drop-off anywhere in Central London
Booking: Pre-booking for all dates
Cancellations: 50% refund up to 5 days before reservation from the time of written confirmation. No refunds thereafter
- The Sanctuary at Avebury
- See Silbury Hill & West Kennet Long Barrow
- Avebury Stone Circle walking tour includes: Lunar & Solar Temples, Obelisk Stone, Portal Stones, the Henge, the Barber Surgeon Stone, St James's church, Lansdowne Monument, Cherhill White Horse and Sandy Lane
- Lacock Village walking tour includes: the Tithe Barn, the Chamberlain's House, weaver's cottages, Lacock Tannery, The Sign of the Angel and Box Tunnel.
- The driveround tour of Bath includes: Bath Abbey, Sally Lunn's, Royal Crescent, The Circus, Queen's Square, Roman Baths' Museum, The Paragon, The Assembly Rooms, Beckford's Tower and Sir Bevil Grenville's Monument