Tour Shakespeare's London:
Experience an authentic slice of Elizabethan London and learn about the life and works of William Shakespeare by joining a guided tour of Shakespeare's Globe. Located at Bankside, Southwark, the building is a faithful reconstruction of the original which was destroyed by fire in 1613. Its main exhibition explores the life and works of Shakespeare, entertainment during the Elizabethan era, and the story of the building itself.
Get hands on and discover how the Elizabethans did special effects such as flying on stage and gory wounds. Professional demonstrations of sword-fighting and acrobatics also take place regularly.
Those visiting with children can follow the Family Trail, a fun and engaging exhibition route designed specifically for kids. Your exhibition audio guide (included in the ticket price) contains all the relevant information.
Thames Hop-On Hop-Off River Cruise:
This ticket for Shakespeare's Globe also includes 24 hour access to the Thames hop-on hop-off tour boats. See here for more information on the cruise route for and details of onboard services. A timetable for the Summer 2016 season is available to download below.
PLEASE NOTE: You do not need to visit the Globe on the same day as your River Thames sightseeing cruise. Both tickets are provided separately upon collection and those for the Globe can be used 72 hours from the date of issue.
About Shakespeare's Globe:
The Shakespeare's Globe we see today owes its existence to the passion and determination of American film director/actor Sam Wanamaker. His vision was for an authentic Elizabethan venue in which modern audiences could experience the bard's works in as close an approximation to the world that conceived them. He set to work in 1970 by founding the Shakespeare Globe Trust, then instigated the long process of securing financial backing, purchasing the building site, and conducting all important historical research.
Despite a range of setbacks Shakespeare's Globe was eventually completed in the mid 1990s and officially opened in 1997 with an inaugural production of Henry V. The building's design was based on that of the original 1599-1613 structure (a replacement having existed between 1613-44). This reflected Wanamaker's desire that the contemporary venue remain as faithful to the atmosphere of Shakespeare's London as possible. Details extended to the materials used in the Globe's construction (genuine English Oak and thatched roofing), its dimensions, and the location of the reconstruction itself.
Wanamaker wanted his theatre erected as close to the location of the Elizabethan Globe as possible, a spot which turned out to be Southwark, 230 meters from the original site. The reason for this disparity is that the Thames is currently much narrower than it was during Shakespeare's time, and the designers of the contemporary Globe felt it the best compromise between riverside authenticity and historicity.
Today Shakespeare's Globe hosts regular public performances from around May to mid October, with winter productions taking place inside the adjoining Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. By excluding spotlights and electric sound systems, you'll notice that the summer performances retain the essence of the original 16th-17th century stagings. Tours of both theatres take place all year round (see above for the Globe Theatre Tour included with this ticket).