During my last visit to the UK’s capital, I went on the afternoon tea bus tour in London and loved it! It combines two unique London traditions: riding on a London double-decker red bus and enjoying afternoon tea. And it does that in such a fun and entertaining way! Keep reading for my review of the Afternoon Tea Bus Tour in London.
Afternoon Tea Bus Tour in London
London traditions and symbols are among the most recognisable ones in the world, from the Union Jack, architectural sites such as Big Ben, the Palace of Westminster, or the Tower Bridge to the red double-decker busses and red phone booths. However, one of the first things coming to anyone’s mind when thinking of Great Britain is its afternoon tea tradition.
Afternoon Tea Tradition
Afternoon tea is a relatively new British tradition, fully developing in the 19th century. Mainly made famous by Queen Victoria, she adopted the new trend from Anna, the Duchess of Bedford. Afternoon tea has become popular during the last few decades, with numerous hotels, cafes, and restaurants in London offering their own versions.
Afternoon Tea Bus Tour in London
A few years ago, I went to my first afternoon tea at a lovely restaurant in London called Brigit’s Bakery. Immediately, I fell in love with the concept of having small bites, followed by delicious and beautifully decorated pastries, all accompanied by some lovely tea. I wanted to try some of their other afternoon tea concepts, so when I went to London at the beginning of November this year, I booked myself a spot on their afternoon tea bus tour in London.
Although I was initially sceptical about having afternoon tea on a bus driving around London, it ended up being one of my favourite experiences from the recent trip to that great city.
The afternoon tea tour is conducted in a vintage red London bus from the 1960s. It feels like you traveled back in time, which makes this afternoon tea in London experience even more special. You can choose between different kinds of themed afternoon tea bus tours in London, from the classic ones to the Halloween one, the gin afternoon tea, different types of Christmas tours (I especially like the Grinchmas tour), and other seasonal tours.
I joined the classic afternoon tea bus tour in London, with a unique autumn-inspired bus decoration. The autumn highlights were also present in the food itself, especially in pastries made of seasonal products. The whole experience lasted around two hours, during which we drove next to some of the most famous London landmarks.
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Afternoon Tea Food
The food was served on a wide and heavy food tray, so it couldn’t slip during our ride through the city. Tea was served in disposable cups, which could be placed in the holes in a table.
Since I already had an afternoon tea at the Brigit’s Bakery location at Covent Garden, I expected quite a lot from the food served during our afternoon tea bus tour in London. And it didn’t disappoint.
We started with some small sandwiches, savory pies, and quiches. I especially liked the one with smoked salmon and cucumbers.
That was followed by delicious cupcakes and beautifully decorated small pies, cakes, and cookies. The last time I was at their afternoon tea, everything was Halloween-themed. So, I was fascinated by the cakes’ autumn decoration this time. We were also served some yummy scones with clotted creme and jam during our tour.
The food during this tea bus tour in London was everything you would expect, consisting of delicious and visually appealing small bites.
The portions were quite large, making it impossible for us to finish our food. Luckily, our hosts were ready for that, so they had small cupboard bags prepared for us to pack all our leftovers. We even got to keep our tea cups and finish our drinks on our way home.
The Bus Tour Route
We had lots of fun during our afternoon tea bus tour by chatting with our companions, listening to music, and savouring delicious food. However, the bus tour is also an essential part of this experience.
It was already dark when I boarded the bus, so I enjoyed seeing London at night. They just put up Christmas lights, too, so we soaked up the Christmas atmosphere of the city. We drove next to some of the most famous London landmarks like Big Ben, the Palace of Westminster, Westminster Abbey, St. James’s Park, Hyde Park, the Royal Albert Hall, Marble Arch, Downing Street and many more. My favourite was driving over Westminster Bridge and enjoying the view of the River Thames, its lit-up banks, and the London Eye illuminated with thousands of bulbs.
During the bus ride, you also hear stories about these places and enjoy immersing in British cultural heritage that way.
This was such a great experience that it exceeded my expectations. Riding on a vintage iconic red London bus while listening to music and riding next to some of the most beautiful sites in London is an experience worth travelling to the UK’s capital. However, doing all that while enjoying a delicious afternoon tea makes it even more enjoyable. When in London the next time, be sure to check Brigit’s Bakery’s afternoon tea bus tour and book your spot on it.
Afternoon Tea Bus Tour in London at Brigit’s Bakery was complimentary for me. However, as always, all opinions are my own.
Cover photo by Sebastian Coman Photography on Unsplash