Saturday, July 05, 2008

Guided Tours

You may be extremely good with maps, have an excellent memory for detail, have worked out how to get fact you can arrange your own tour, except you will so busy with the detail, perhaps looking for free wireless connections for your laptop too for that extra information, you won't have a chance to take photos, let alone have a really good look around. But on a guided tour, someone else is looking after all that stuff.

We booked three tours in Singapore, a single day in Paris, another day in Amsterdam, the Hop On Hop Off bus in London, a cruise down the Thames and Seine and at the National Gallery in London, we hired head phone commentary machines. I could not say that any of them not great. In the case of the gallery, we may not have seen as much art, but we learnt a lot about what we did see.

I used to be dead against coach tours, but after visiting the Northern Territory and using tours, after Thailand and using some tours, after Vietnam being one long tour, and now using tours in Singapore, Europe and England, they are the only way to go. Ok, it cost us $400 for both of us for a day in Paris, but it was well worth it.

You can only spend so long observing street life. Then you want to see other stuffs.


  1. I'm glad to read this as I am about to take a guided Kimberley and Kakadu tour.

  2. Reuben2:04 pm

    Guided tours do not please me. I like to see the sites on my own accord...without some fat person telling me where to take photos. I don't like the imposed time constraints associated with guided tours either.

    Rondleidingen niet gelieve me. Ik graag zien dat de sites op mijn eigen overeenstemming ... zonder enige vet persoon me te vertellen waar te nemen foto's. Ik houd niet van de tijd beperkingen opgelegd in verband met rondleidingen.

  3. Andrew,

    Buy a guidebook next time. They're a lot cheaper, you're not bound by the same time restrictions and there's a good chance you'll meet Hugh Grant in the bookshop and end up marrying him. (Actually, scratch that last bit...not such a good idea after all really.)

  4. Oh Andrew... Coach tours are good things in some cases (like in the middle of Egypt or going through the Kinberleys and yeah, through Indonesia and the like) but for places like Europe and the UK, you're far better off with a guidebook and daily transport ticket. We set up our own itinery for both our Japan/China tour and our England/Scotland tour and it was surprisingly easy to get around everywhere. We didn't even use the Hop On/Off bus. Just takes a bit of planning. Hope you get to go on holiday again and do what we did. It was fantastic.

  5. Welcome home Andrew! I hope you had the most amazing time (it sounds like you did, and little Jo is nearly walking! How gorgeous!)

    I loved your pre-written posts. Too funny, and so very you. It was nice to have a touch of High Riser while you were away.

    I am a fan of guided tours myself as a way of establishing yourself and finding your feet. They are handy when you have limited time too.

    Hope the jet lag is not too awful!

  6. Only way to go there Victor.

    Time constraints can be a problem Reuben, I agree.

    The planning would all be down to me Ren.

    Not really had jet lag Rosanna. For sure when you have limited time, they are good.

  7. Not a movie I have seen Brian, but I can guess.

  8. Guided tours can sometimes be the only way to see the best bits ;)

  9. Especially for those of us who are over thirty Jayne.