Are We There Yet?
Sunday 31 August 2008
I've just taken my bored nearly-teen on a guided tour – and he actually enjoyed it. A shock, considering his refusal to do anything organised or educational on the grounds that it's "totally uncool".
Guided tours no longer involve being herded around by umbrella-toting boffins: these days, if you've got an MP3 player, you're laughing. And the kids love it: you just plug your little darlings in and off they go.
Leaders in this digital revolution include WalkTalk Tours ( walktalktour.com) and Soundmap ( soundmap.co.uk). The latter specialises in anecdotal guides to London: child-friendly downloadable routes narrated by local experts and featuring music, history and chats. Look out for its special walking tour of Brixton for the next Black History Month.
Visit Bristol ( visitbristol.co.uk) is down with the kids, too: it has just commissioned a brand new walking tour which describes the impact of the Atlantic slave trade on the city, geared for children and adults alike. But the age of the human tour guide is far from over. Real people are giving the chip a run for its money, with new tours for kids springing up all over the place.
Visit Eastbourne before the autumn, for example, and they can tour the streets with The Jester ( thetourjester.co.uk), a quirky character who'll tell them everything they ever needed to know about the city. And he dresses in bright pink, so you can't miss him. How's that for street cred?
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
- 2 The man who filmed the Freddie Gray video has been arrested at gunpoint
- 3 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
- 4 The top 50 cities for young people to live in
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: SNP and its activists 'openly racist' towards the English, Farage says
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
£24800 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As one of London's leading Muse...
£14000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£28 - 45k (DOE): Guru Careers: An Accountant is needed to take control of the ...
£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This hotel in Chadderton is a p...