If you're in London this June and looking for some British culture and sporting excitement, what could fit the bill more quintessentially than Wimbledon?
Held this year from 23rd June – 6th July, Wimbledon is the world's oldest tennis tournament, and of the four Grand Slam tournaments, the only one which is held on grass. Whether you're a tennis fanatic or not, the atmosphere at Wimbledon is something special, and is sure to be charged this year as the crowds wonder whether Andy Murray can hold onto his 2013 champion title.
Although tickets from the online ballot are long sold out, you can still nab tickets on the day by joining The Queue at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on Church Road, where the tournament is held.
Each day of play, 500 tickets for Centre Court (until the semi-finals, when every ticket is pre-sold), 500 tickets for No.1 Court, 500 tickets for No.2 Court and several thousand tickets for the Grounds are made available to the queuing public. Grounds open at 09.30, but it's advisable to get there as early as possible for the best possible tickets – if you want really great tickets, consider camping overnight, an experience in itself! Prices vary depending on which court you secure tickets for and what stage the tournament is at – prices for 2014 range from £38 to £112 for the courts, with Grounds admission averaging at around £15. Payment is by cash only, so come prepared!
Once inside the All England Club, you can indulge in some Wimbledon traditions. Enjoy one of the 8,615 punnets of strawberries and cream consumed daily, or savour a glass of Pimm's, 200,000 of which are sold at every tournament. You don't have to fork out a fortune to have a ball at Wimbledon, however. Every spectator is entitled to bring into the grounds one bottle of wine or two cans of beer, as well as a small picnic box.
It's easy to link up a trip to Wimbledon with your Big Bus Tour of
London. Simply hop off at Kensington Palace (stop 37 on the Big Blue Tour), and jump on the tube. The closest stops to Wimbledon are Southfields and Wimbledon, both on the westbound District Line. From Kensington Palace, it'll take you 45 minutes. Alternatively, hop off at Victoria Station (stop 29 on the red and blue tours), for a 40 minute tube ride to Wimbledon. From there, you can get a shuttle bus to the grounds, hop in a taxi or take a short stroll.