9 Day Best of Britain Tour Itinerary
Day 1 : Heathrow Airport &
Start your tour at Heathrow Airport with a transfer
to your hotel in Windsor. At 2:30 pm depart your hotel to visit Windsor Castle,
residence of The Queen and the largest inhabited castle in the world. See the
lavishly decorated State Apartments and courtyards. In the evening meet your
tour director and trip participants over a welcome drink to discuss your
itinerary before dining in your hotel.
Day 2 : Cotswolds &
Head out into the English countryside today
and travel through the delightful Cotswolds. This region was important in the
Middle Ages when the wool produced was vital to the economy. Most of the
villages date back centuries and are built in the local warm-toned stone. Stop
in one of the villages to take photos before driving to Stratford-upon-Avon.
Here visit Shakespeare's Birthplace to see an exhibition about his life and
work. Then enter the house where he was born to see rooms furnished as they
would have been in his day. Drive north to Yorkshire and check in to your
charming traditional hotel in central Harrogate.
Day 3 : York Minster & Scottish
Drive to nearby York for a walking tour through medieval
streets to see black and white half-timbered houses, which contain centuries of
history. Stroll along the Shambles, one of narrowest alleyways where the
overhanging upper floors almost form an arch across the street. Tour the stately
York Minster, which towers over the old city and is renowned for its magnificent
stained glass windows. Travel north through the Northumberland National Park and
pause in Jedburgh, a marketing town with picturesque abbey ruins. Continue
through the pleasant, hilly countryside of the Scottish Borders to Edinburgh
where your historic hotel is set in spacious grounds a few miles outside the
city. In the evening enjoy a Scottish dinner with musical entertainment.
Day 4 : Edinburgh Castle &
Guided City Tour
Explore central Edinburgh this morning, starting in
the 200-year-old “New Town” with its planned streets and elegant Georgian houses
where many famous writers and inventors lived. See the Royal Mile where the
medieval houses are clustered closely together with some as high as 11 floors.
Tour the massive Edinburgh Castle to see the Crown Jewels of Scotland and the
Stone of Destiny and enjoy great views right across the city. The afternoon is
free for independent activities. You may like to visit some of the many museums
or browse in the little shops along the Royal Mile. On August 04 to 18
departures watch the spectacular Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo which takes
place on the Castle Esplanade.
Day 5 : Lake District & Beatles'
Stop in Gretna Green, the first village across the border
from England where since 1754 young couples have crossed into Scotland to be
married at the Old Blacksmith's Shop. It is still a popular wedding place to
this day. Drive through the Lake District, a region associated with Beatrix
Potter. See stunning views of lakes, gentle hills and valleys. Stop in Grasmere
where William Wordsworth penned some of his popular lines and you can see his
grave in the village churchyard. Continue to Liverpool to visit The Beatles
Story where you can hear their music and learn about their lives and work in a
lively exhibit. Check in to your centrally-located hotel and after dinner you
may head to the world-famous Cavern Club.
Day 6 : Tintern Abbey & Cardiff
Drive south through Shropshire, one of the most
unspoiled parts of rural England and close to the Welsh border. Stop in Ludlow,
a town that can trace its origins back 900 years, to see the huge castle and old
black-and-white houses. Continue south through the lovely Welsh countryside to
visit the picturesque ruins of Tintern Abbey, founded in 1131, in the River Wye
Valley. It was a prosperous Cistercian abbey which grew and thrived until it was
dissolved by order of King Henry VIII in 1536. In the 18th century it became a
popular haunt of the poet, William Wordsworth. Continue to Cardiff, the youngest
and fastest-growing capital city in Europe. In the heart of the city visit
Cardiff Castle, which dates back nearly 2,000 years. See the 19th century
fairy-tale apartments with ornate decorations and then enjoy a great Welsh
banquet right in the Castle.
Day 7 : Roman Baths &
Take a panoramic tour around the highlights of Cardiff
including the older buildings as well as the iconic Wales Millennium Centre. A
short drive will bring you to the spa city of Bath, popular for its natural hot
springs with the Romans 2,000 years ago and again in the 18th century Regency
period. View the stately town houses, the Pulteney Bridge and many other fine
Regency buildings. Visit the Roman Baths and Pump Room, wonderfully preserved
after two millennia, with hot springs still sending out healing waters. At
Salisbury Plain marvel at the prehistoric circle of vast monoliths of Stonehenge
and learn about the primitive builders who managed to create such an enduring
monument. Continue into London and check in to your hotel.
Day 8 : Tower of London &
Today explore London on an independent open-top sightseeing bus
tour - you have a choice of routes around London's famous landmarks so you may
get on and off wherever you wish. There is also a walking tour and a River
Thames cruise. Be sure to use your included voucher to visit the Tower of London
to view the magnificent Crown Jewels, guarded by Beefeaters in distinctive Tudor
uniforms or Kensington Palace, birthplace of Queen Victoria and home to Princess
Diana. There is no shortage of great things to see and do and the bus routes go
through many popular shopping districts, if you wish to buy souvenirs. In the
evening you are free for dinner.
Day 9 : Tour Ends Heathrow Airport
Heathrow Airport by independent transfer in time to check in for your flight
B: Breakfast; D: Dinner