London’s awash with history. We’re so lucky that at every turn our capital city has ancient landmarks, palaces, cathedrals and buildings. What better way to see them than on a fun urban treasure trail?

Foxtrail is a new addition to the wide variety of London tourist attractions, with teams working together to find clues, solve riddles and crack puzzles to follow a walking route around the city in the quickest time (you don’t have to race!).

Here are some cool historical facts about our Lancelot route

Southwark Cathedral

There’s been a church on this site for more than 1,000 years. Before that it was a Roman villa. Its pavement was incorporated into the floor. Excavations discovered a well and a pagan statue below the choir! London sightseeing around London Bridge and the South Bank should always include this beautiful cathedral.

Winchester Palace

Dating back from the early Middle Ages, this 13th-century palace is now in ruins. But it makes for one of the fascinating things to see in London on the Foxtrail route. It was once one of London’s most important buildings, home to the Bishops of Winchester. Today, you can still see the remaining Great Hall walls and rose window. There’s also a medieval style garden in the ruins.

Isaac Newton’s House

Sir Isaac Newton famously worked out that, thanks to gravity, what goes up must come down. Unfortunately, his former home at 35 St Martin’s Street came down some time after his death in 1727.

While he didn’t come up with the law of gravity here, he did build himself a nice little observatory on the roof. It’s reckoned a lucky American snapped up the famous observatory for £100 in the 1860s.

Ships on the Thames

Ships have been synonymous with the River Thames since the first settlements. From the old, a replica of the Golden Hind is docked at Southwark. Sir Francis Drake sailed the Golden Hind on his jaunt around the globe, sponsored by Queen Elizabeth I.

Nearby, the “modern” HMS Belfast is still moored up proudly in the shadow of Tower Bridge. Now a museum and one of the popular places to visit in London, she saw service at the D-Day Landings as well as the Korean War.

Somerset House

First built in 1547, it’s current incarnation dates back to 1776. Behind exhibitions, film sets and its now-famous winter ice rink there’s some interesting history.

For instance, the North Wing’s four statues from 1778 represent the then-know four continents. The America statue bears a spear – because at the time we were at war with America!

St Katharine Docks

Once a hub of trade with goods coming up the River Thames from all over the world, St Katharine’s, just to the east of Tower Bridge is now an oasis of calm, away from the traffic offering shops and eateries. A pleasant stop-off on any London attractions walk, the current dock was constructed by Sir Thomas Telford and opened officially in 1828.

To see fascinating historical sites like these, join Foxtrail for a treasure trail across the city.

Foxtrail was the brainchild of Fredy Wiederkehr, who set up his first test trails around Lake Thun in Switzerland back in 2001. Within years he was working full time on the adventure trails, which featured cunning clues and puzzles to solve along the way.

Now Foxtrail is a foremost tourist attraction in Switzerland with exciting yet challenging trails crisscrossing cities throughout the country, including Zurich, Lausanne, Basel, Bern and Luzern.

Success led the company to believe Foxtrail was a concept that could work in any city in any country. Here at Foxtrail UK we’re testament to that. London is the focus of our early work, with our Lancelot trail to be followed by two more in the capital. We also intend to spread out to other major cities across the UK.

But we’re not the first pups to join the international Foxtrail family. Foxtrail Helsinki in Finland is up and running, so too Foxtrail Berlin in Germany.

And we’re delighted to say more are on the way!

We can reveal that coming soon are additions from Rome and Paris, both of which provide excellent bases for urban treasure trails, suitable for friends, family and corporate team building events.

Both cities are bursting with so many fabulous landmarks and historical features, it’s a wonder how the local teams will pick a route. In Rome, will participants fight it out as they try to solve clues quickest at the Colosseum. Or, they may be puzzled by a riddle by the Basilica of St Peter, the extraordinary church reaching 400 feet into the sky.

The Pantheon, home to the Roman gods, Sistine Chapel or world-famous Trevi Fountain might also be on the agenda? Even if we knew, we wouldn’t let on, after all it’s up to you to follow the cunning fox and complete the Foxtrail.

Paris, too, is hardly short of fascinating attractions and landmarks. Like Rome, many key focal points are close together, making for brilliant route-planning logistics!

When launched, we fully expect the Parisian Foxtrail to feature at least several of the best-known features in France’s capital city. There’s the Louvre Museum, home of da Vinci’s Mona Lisa painting, and the Notre-Dame de Paris, the imposing 13th-century cathedral with flying buttresses and gargoyles.

No trip to Paris would be complete without viewing the Eiffel Tower or the iconic Arc de Triomphe, which was built to celebrate Napoleon’s victories (before Waterloo!).

There’s also the Place de la Concorde, the square that used to be the scene of public executions. But we don’t want any Foxtrail fans to lose their head!

If you’ve tried the Foxtrail experience in London, we know you’ll want to give the up-and-coming Rome and Paris trails a go if you’re looking for fun activities in France or Italy. We’ll keep you in touch with their development.

Who knows where Foxtrail will crop up next. They’ve been so successful so far that we can see a time when all the world’s major cities have their own Foxtrail.

We’ve made it easy for you to get hold of your Foxtrail tickets, teaming up with one of London’s premier ticket outlets. You can now use Encore Tickets to pre-order and collect or buy your tickets on the spot.

Encore Tickets acts on behalf of some of the biggest London attractions, and we’re delighted they have joined forces with Foxtrail to promote our brilliant urban treasure trails around the capital city.

You can buy direct from the website, or from the outlets in Leicester Square, at the Cranbourne Street entrance, or at the Charing Cross Island, opposite the Garrick Theatre.

It means if you’re looking for fun in London and fancy trying out Lancelot, our first Foxtrail route, then you can simply walk up to Encore Tickets and grab your tickets.

Remember, Lancelot will get you sightseeing London in an exciting way that you’d  never thought of before. Starting around St Paul’s Cathedral, you need to find and solve clues before moving on to the next destination. In all, you’ll cover around four miles, taking up to four hours.

It’s perfect entertainment for friends and family, with teams of two to seven people taking part.

So, if you’re looking for fun in London, get in touch with Encore Tickets and ask about Foxtrail. It’s an urban treasure hunt or scavenger hunt with a twist!

Why not speak with Encore Tickets to arrange a whole day of London tourism at its best? The site has tickets for popular musicals in London, plays, dance and opera, nights out and more.

For example, in the morning you could arrange to explore London with Foxtrail. Without giving too much away, the Lancelot route takes in Borough Market, a perfect stop off for a snack and drink from the high quality cosmopolitan independent stalls.

Once you’ve perfected your detective skills and solved all the clues to finish Foxtrail successfully, treat yourself to a spot of lunch before taking in an afternoon show like Kinky Boots at the Adelphi Theatre, Mamma Mia at the Novello, or Disney’s The Lion King at the Lyceum Theatre.

And your busy day of London attractions doesn’t have to end there. Encore Tickets will help you find something different for the evening – perhaps a comedy show or a dinner and cruise along the River Thames.

Whatever you fancy doing, make sure Foxtrail heads your list of top tourist attractions in London. Completing our exciting urban treasure hunt will get you out and about in the fresh air seeing the capital from a different perspective. It will certainly work up your appetite! And don’t worry about getting stuck on one of the clues, you can always contact us for help at any time.

Get started with your planning today. Contact Encore Tickets via their website, where you can read lots of information about all the London attractions on offer. Or contact them by phone on 0207 400 1255 (or +44 207 400 1255 from abroad).

We’re thrilled that our urban treasure trail experience is supported by London and Partners, the Mayor of London’s official promotional agency.

London and Partners is a not-for-profit organisation geared towards promoting and driving jobs and visitors to the city. The Mayor understands employment rises and tourism increases if more exciting events and creative attractions get off the ground.

When Foxtrail UK was a mere cub, London and Partners offered guidance and support. This is vital for any organisation looking to start up in what could otherwise be a bureaucratic and regulatory swamp.

The Mayor’s team guided us over many hurdles, and once we were ready to open our first urban treasure trail across the city, it offered launch and practical help. Support doesn’t stop there, with the London and Partners website linking through to showcase some of the best attractions the capital has to offer. Including Foxtrail!

Visitors to our great capital city are left in no doubt about just what a huge variety of attractions and tours there are to try out.

Explore London

London and Partners sums itself up by saying its purpose is to “tell London’s story”, promoting the city across the world as a key place to work, invest, study and visit.

It operates in seven key areas, and at Foxtrail we’re interested in two of them: leisure tourism and then meetings and events.

The first one is our bread and butter, since we offer tourists, school parties and families a healthy and fun day out, with teams of two to seven people setting off on our urban treasure trails, attempting to find and solve clues leading them to the next destination. It’s a great way to explore London and get some healthy exercise!

However, we’re also a great novelty when it comes to corporate team days out in London. Corporate team building in London has become a big thing and having the Mayor’s promotional agency attracting business meetings and events to the city gives us a great platform.

Businesses recognise that while teamwork is essential for innovation and getting things done, you must work at it. Getting the team out of the office environment and into the fresh air to experience something like Foxtrail is perfect for team building.

As well as having great fun, staff will test their teamwork, observational and problem-solving skills, all while enjoying some fresh air and exploring some of London’s most iconic landmarks. Lancelot, our first trail, starts at St Paul’s Cathedral, covers around four miles, and will take up to four hours to complete. Our corporate events can even start and end with refreshments at a local hotel. Perfect for recovery!

We’re so sure everyone will love taking part that we’d be happy to have the Mayor of London himself, Mr Sadiq Khan come along to try and complete our premier Lancelot Trail.

He’d certainly enjoy seeing how his official promotional agency, London and Partners, has done so much to help Foxtrail put its mark across the city.