The Hop On Hop Off red open-topped double decker bus around Stratford Upon Avon could be summarised as “good route, poor commentary”. The buses left from the information centre every half hour with 11 stops around the town. Most of the buses had the front third of the top deck under cover which was good on a cold day such as the one on which we travelled.
The route stopped at all the main Shakespeare sights, including going out into the countryside to Mary Arden’s Farm. My socket for the commentary did not work but my husband said I missed nothing. The somewhat childish commentary started and stopped randomly and was regularly interrupted by music in the middle of a spoken piece and was not co-ordinated to the sights – for example it welcomed everyone on board whilst travelling through the countryside when there had been no stop for some time. However, the actual route was interesting and well thought out – taking about one hour if you don’t get off.
The price was £10 for a Senior 24 hour pass but for £15 you could have a 48 hour pass including the Warwickshire tour bus – this takes you out further into the countryside stopping at places such as Warwick Castle (voucher for 2 for 1 entry) and the Heritage Motor centre. There are also various other 24 hour packages available such as £20.50 including entry to 3 Shakespeare houses.
I consider this was a good way to see all the sights but do have your own guide book/notes with you and follow the map provided as the commentary is poor.