Flags and royal emblems are already adorning the streets of London as it prepares to celebrate Britain’s first coronation in 70 years with great pomp and spectacle. This is the highest record of visitors ever seen in the United Kingdom in a long time even as its economy tries to recover from recession.
After the coronation dates were announced, searches for Airbnb rentals in London during the coronation weekend surged, according to the company, which reported U.S. travelers among the top guests in London around the coronation dates, along with travelers from Britain, France, Australia and Germany.
According to Expedia, searches for London hotels rocketed by 4,285% after the coronation date was announced. Flight bookings from the United States to Britain are about 10 per cent higher in May compared with May 2019, before the pandemic, according to VisitBritain.
The coronation ceremony itself is set to take place on May 6, with a host of activities set to happen before and after the main event. The three-day affair will include a royal procession through central London, a celebrity-studded concert at Windsor Castle, and a national holiday on May 8, as well as street parties across the country.
The weekend-long affair starts with the coronation ceremony which will take place on the morning of Saturday, May 6 at Westminster Abbey. The service itself is for VIPs only, but the public can watch the procession along a 1.3-mile route from Buckingham Palace to the Abbey.
The procession will then travel to the Abbey in the Diamond Jubilee State Coach. They’ll go down the long, straight Mall leading from the palace, through Admiralty Arch, turn right to travel down Whitehall and around Parliament Square to finish at the Abbey at 11 a.m.
A host of activities will continue on Sunday with local communities being encouraged to have “Coronation Big Lunches” across the UK, from street parties to sit-down meals or even a cup of tea with neighbors in commemoration of this historic event.
Later that evening, on May 7, Katy Perry, Lionel Richie and Andrea Bocelli will be among the performers at a concert on the grounds of Windsor Castle. There will also be a performance from the Coronation Choir, a mega choir of amateur singers and community choirs, including refugee and LGBTQ+ groups, from across the country.
Visitors can then tour Hampton Court Palace, Westminster Abbey, and the Tower of London, among other historical features on May 8, which will be a public holiday in the UK. They can also make day trips to Oxford and the Cotswolds and explore the United Kingdom at large.