DAY 1 - ARRIVE LONDON (2 NIGHTS)
Embrace the pomp and pageantry of a global capital with multicultural verve. Today is yours to explore the vibrant mix of old and new around every turn. Spend the day exploring the royal heritage of London, stroll along the tree-lined Thames or admire treasures from across the globe before enjoying the night-time buzz of this fascinating city.
Hotel: Hilton Kensington
DAY 2 - LONDON SIGHTSEEING AND AT LEISURE OR LONDON OPTIONAL EXPERIENCE
Your London Travel Agency Local Guide takes you on an included morning sightseeing tour showcasing Big Ben beside the River Thames, the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey and Buckingham Palace. See the Changing of the Guard (if held), Whitehall's mounted Royal Horse Guards, the Prime Minister's Downing Street, Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus. Your sightseeing trip concludes in central London, with time to explore on your own during the afternoon. Shopping in some of the most famous department stores, take a leisurely walk through London spacious Hyde Park or join an Optional Experience inside the Tower of London to see the dazzling Crown Jewels and meet the Yeoman Warders of Her Majesty's Royal Palace and Fortress popularly known as Beefeaters.
DAY 3 - LONDON - STRATFORD-UPON-AVON - YORK
This morning travel to Stratford-upon-Avon to see Shakespeare’s Birthplace. The Visitor Centre clarifies Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s important role in preserving the iconic Stratford attractions associated with England’s greatest, and the world’s favourite, playwright. Then view Anne Hathaway's thatched cottage where the young Shakespeare courted his love. Devote your free time to the charming cobbled streets of the town or walk along the banks of the River Avon. In York, view the ancient city walls, picturesque Shambles and the magnificent Minster during your orientation walk through the Roman town. This evening get to know your companions and Travel Director at a Welcome Pub Reception, which includes a typical British pub meal and drink.
Full Breakfast Hotel: Hilton 53
DAY 4 - YORK - DURHAM - EDINBURGH (2 NIGHTS),
DAY 5 - EDINBURGH SIGHTSEEING AND FREE TIME,
Set in rugged landscape, Edinburgh - the “Athens of the North” - contains a vast of both medieval and Georgian architecture. . This morning your Local Host takes you on a sightseeing tour incorporating the Royal Mile, views of the Palace of Holyroodhouse, Arthur's Seat, Princes Street and the Scottish Parliament. Your sightseeing options include a visit to Edinburgh Castle or the Camera Obscura. This afternoon, enjoy free time to explore at your own pace or join your Travel Director on an Optional Experience to Rosslyn Chapel, featured in the bestselling Da Vinci Code because of its associations with the Knights Templar. During the Edinburgh Festival your visit includes tickets to the spectacular and much-loved Edinburgh Tattoo on the Castle grounds.
DAY 6 - EDINBURGH - ST. ANDREWS - PITLOCHRY - SCOTTISH HIGHLANDS,
Cross the Forth Bridge to the ancient Kingdom of Fife and on to the famous golf course at St. Andrews. Pause to take photographs at the familiar 18th green. Drive over the River Tay into the Scottish Highlands. Enjoy an included Cultural Insight at a whisky distillery to sample a 'wee dram'. Arrive at Pitlochry, a charming village on the edge of the Cairngorms National Park. A picturesque drive brings you to your hotel, where you will dine before retiring content.
Full Breakfast/ Dinner Hotel: Highlander
DAY 7 - SCOTTISH HIGHLANDS - SPEAN BRIDGE - GLENCOE - LOCH LOMOND - GLASGOW,
View the Commando Memorial at Spean Bridge and marvel at the prospect of Britain's highest mountain - Ben Nevis. Drive to Glencoe, site of a bloody and cruel massacre in 1692. Travel south through picturesque landscapes to the “bonnie banks” of Loch Lomond. Later you arrive in Glasgow where your orientation includes George Square and St. Mungo's Cathedral.
Full Breakfast Hotel: MacDonald House
DAY 8 - GLASGOW - GRETNA GREEN - LAKE DISTRICT - LIVERPOOL,
See Gretna Green where eloping couples would make their vows over the blacksmith’s anvil. Return to England and enjoy a light Be My Guest lunch in the beautiful Cumbrian countryside. Later visit the Lake District where the great Romantic poet William Wordsworth lived in the early 19th century. Visit Grasmere where he wrote his most famous poem 'Daffodils' and see his final resting place in the churchyard of St. Oswald's Church. Before arriving in Liverpool we will take in Lake Windermere, which dominates the landscape, being England’s largest natural lake.
Full Breakfast Hotel: Mercure Atlantic Tower
DAY 9 - LIVERPOOL - WYE VALLEY - BRISTOL,
Travel through beautiful Welsh countryside this morning and stop in one of England’s designated “AONB’s” - an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty: the Wye Valley. At the village of Tintern, view the spectacular ruins of a world-famous Cistercian abbey immortalised in Wordsworth’s poetic “Lines”. Later arrive in Bristol and see the Clifton Suspension Bridge and the SS Great Britain during your orientation. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow companions for a Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant.
Full Breakfast/ Farewell Dinner Hotel: Mercure Holland House
DAY 10 - BRISTOL - BATH - STONEHENGE - LONDON,
Visit the UNESCO World Heritage City of Bath. See the splendid Georgian architecture and enjoy an included visit to the Roman Baths. Visit the mysterious prehistoric monoliths at Stonehenge. A scenic drive through Wiltshire and Hampshire brings you back to London.
Full Breakfast Hotel: Hilton Kensington
DAY 11- DEPART LONDON
Say farewell to your travelling companions as you prepare to return home after a memorable holiday.
# WHAT'S ALWAYS INCLUDED
- Orientation of York, Durham, Glasgow, Grasmere, Bristol and Bath
- See the 18th green on the Old Course at St. Andrews, Blair Castle and the Lake District
- View Anne Hathaway's thatched cottage, York Minster, Hadrians' Wall, Jedburgh Abbey and Tintern Abbey
- Visit Shakespeare's Birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon, Edinburgh Castle, Whisky Distillery, Gretna Green, Wye Valley, the Roman Baths in Bath and the ancient stone circle at Stonehenge
- Luxury air-conditioned coach with WiFi
- Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing
- Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted
- Daily breakfast and an average of 50% of evening meals
- Hand-picked Insider Experiences
- Optional Experiences and free time
- Porterage and local charges included
- Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras
- An expert Travel Director and separate Driver
- All hotel tips, charges and local taxes
- All porterage and restaurant gratuities
- Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing
- The services of a London Travel Agency Local Host
- Pick-up and drop-off if you stay at the London Travel Agency recommended Hotels
- FREE Airport transfers. Conditions apply.
Explore Britain's cultural heritage, landscapes and poetic legends on our stellar Best of Britain Tours with VIP entry to many sights. Take in England, Wales and Scotland on this Country Explorer trip, from the beautiful cathedral towns of York, Salisbury and Chester to the mystic monuments of Stonehenge, Shakespeare’s Stratford-Upon-Avon, Wordsworth’s Lake District and historic Edinburgh.