The Mayor Thames Festival 2013 returns to London

London's River Thames at duskIf you’re stopping by London this September, why not take a trip to the iconic Mayor Thames Festival, a free celebration of the history of the famous river and the city that sits on its banks? With a whole host of activities taking place across the 10-day spectacular, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Displays of river-related art, music and educational activities make it a gala of cultural diversity. What’s more, 2013 marks the first year the festival has been extended to 10 days, so you don’t want to miss out on the jam-packed line up of festivities and fun.

The highly anticipated annual Great River Race is due to take place on the 7th of September. 300 crews from across the globe gather to compete in this river-based marathon of speed and endurance, spanning a 21 mile distance that passes many of London’s most popular tourist attractions. Stand by the finish line at Ham House and cheer in the winning competitors.

As night descends upon the river on the 15th, stand witness to a maritime opera performance like no other. The main performers of the symposium are described as “an armada of historic vessels from the age of sail, steam and diesel”, gathering and exploding in a collective concerto of booming ship horns and blasting cannons. The river becomes the stage with the stunning O2 Academy lighting the performance against the darkness. The heady musical elements and outstanding display of historic vessels of long ago will culminate in a truly unique performance.

After all this cultural enrichment you’re going to need a place to relax, ready for what the rest of the festival has in store. Therefore, take time to enjoy delicate finger sandwiches, freshly baked scones and a choice of patisserie – all served with a choice of tea – here at DUKES.

Image courtesy of Elliott Brown