London readies for Diamond Jubilee celebrations

Patriotic travellers and interested overseas tourists will soon be looking for luxury London hotels to book ahead of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

The capital will be decked out in Union Jacks as the Queen celebrates her 60th year as Britain's monarch from June 2nd to 5th 2012.

Visitors have been invited to join in the festivities, which includes the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant, which will feature a flotilla of 1,000 boats that will travel along the Thames led by the Queen in the Royal Barge.

Each craft taking part will be decorated with streamers and Union Jack flags, with the passenger boats carrying up to 30,000 members of the public.

The pageant includes music barges, boats spouting geysers, pyrotechnic barges, a floating belfry, a gun salute and a funfair for families.

A special BBC Concert at Buckingham Palace will provide free music, with tickets available to UK residents via a ballot.

Additionally, there will be a service of thanksgiving at St Paul's Cathedral followed by a formal carriage procession by the Queen.

The Queen's Diamond Jubilee Beacons are a highlight of the celebrations, with a network of 2,012 beacons to be lit thought the UK, with the Monarch personally lighting the National Beacon.

Street parties and local neighbourhood celebrations are encouraged for the Big Jubilee lunch.

"To mark the Diamond Jubilee, the UK government is planning a four-day Jubilee weekend," commented Visit London.
"This will include moving the last May bank holiday to June 4th and adding an additional bank holiday on June 5th. So you've got even more time to celebrate!"

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