Best of Britain

Britain & Ireland

Regional Journey

Best of Britain (Summer 2019)

Duration: 11 days Visiting: England, Scotland, Wales

Prices from {{lowPrice}}

Menu
  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Highlights
  • Optional experiences
  • Accommodation
  • Reviews
  • Dates & prices

From the home of Shakespeare, to the moors of Scotland and the beautiful Cornish Countryside, this really is the best of all that Britain offers.

  1. Day 1

    Welcome to London

    Welcome to London. After checking into your hotel, the afternoon is free to enjoy a city that is famous for its pomp and pageantry. Perhaps relax with a walk along the Serpentine in Hyde Park or window shop in the elegant boutiques of Knightsbridge? Alternatively, you may want to stroll along the Thames to the iconic Tower Bridge and Tower of London.

  2. Day 2

    London and Medieval York.

    At 07:30, meet your Travel Director to begin your journey north to Stratford-upon-Avon with its wealth of black and white timber-framed buildings. Discover how William Shakespeare and his incredible works continue to shape society today when you visit his birthplace, full of interesting memorabilia and artefacts relating to his life. Continue to historic York to stroll the narrow lanes including the Shambles and view York Minster, England's largest medieval cathedral. Later, join your Travel Director for a warm and friendly Welcome Dinner with the opportunity to mingle other over a pleasant evening.

  3. Day 3

    Hadrian's Wall to Edinburgh

    See a part of Hadrian's Wall, once spanning 80 miles from coast to coast, marking the northern frontier of the mighty Roman Empire. Continue past Jedburgh Abbey en route to the Scottish capital, Edinburgh for your two-night stay in this stunning city.

  4. Day 4

    Edinburgh Sightseeing.

    In the morning, see the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the official Scottish residence of Her Majesty, the Queen, at the end of the Royal Mile. Continue past the Sir Walter Scott Monument to the 18th century New Town with its neoclassical Adam facades. Join a Local Expert at Edinburgh Castle, home of the Honours of Scotland, to view the Stone of Destiny and Mons Meg. The afternoon is at leisure. In the evening, select departures will attend the spectacular Military Tattoo - a colourful mix of pipes and drums, dance and display, set against the floodlit backdrop of Edinburgh Castle.

  5. Day 5

    Loch Lomond to Glasgow.

    Drive via historic Bannockburn and Stirling and enjoy the scenery of the Trossachs. Continue along the Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond, before arriving in Glasgow for an orientation of the city with your Travel Director. See the grand public buildings, including George Square and St. Mungo's Cathedral.

  6. Day 6

    The Glorious Lake District.

    Travel via Gretna Green to the English Lake District, with scenery so beautiful it inspired a host of writers. Learn about the life of William Wordsworth and visit his grave in the picturesque, stone-built village of Grasmere.

  7. Day 7

    The Welsh Marches and Cardiff.

    Stop in ancient Ludlow, one of England’s most attractive towns, dominated by its castle, rich in tragic royal history. Why not spend time exploring the traditional open-air market, admiring the local crafts and perhaps sampling the produce? Afterwards, cross into southern Wales and head for the capital city of Cardiff for an orientation of the port city, upon the River Taff. See Cardiff Castle and the impressive Principality Stadium.

  8. Day 8

    Georgian Bath and Cornwall.

    Cross the Severn Bridge back into England and drive to the Georgian City of Bath, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built amphitheatre-style on the surrounding hills and above Britain's only thermal, mineral springs, its curative waters have been famous since Roman times. See the 15th century Abbey Church with angels climbing Jacob's Ladder. Visit the Roman Baths to see the incredibly well-preserved remains of one of the greatest spas of the ancient world, still flowing with the natural hot water from the springs below. Continue on to Glastonbury, steeped in legend and reputed to be the final resting place of King Arthur and the Holy Grail. Then head to your fabulous resort in the Cornish countryside.

  9. Day 9 - Relaxed Start

    The Cornish Coast Experience.

    In the morning, visit a quaint Cornish fishing village and continue to Plymouth on the Cornish Coast. Numerous famous voyagers have set off from this ancient port and you will see the Barbican, Citadel, Plymouth Hoe and the Mayflower Steps, from where the Pilgrim Fathers set sail for America. Return via the hilly countryside of Dartmoor, home to wild ponies. For your Celebration Dinner, join your Travel Director and newfound friends for a Farm-to-Table dining experience on the edge of Dartmoor National Park.

  10. Day 10

    Stonehenge and London.

    Travel across Salisbury Plain to visit the pre-historic and mysterious Stonehenge, where the strange and awe-inspiring monoliths are reputed to be up to 5,000 years old. Your journey concludes upon arrival at The Grosvenor Hotel in London.

  11. Day 11

    Homeward Bound.

    Your journey comes to an end after breakfast.

Highlights

 

TOP RATED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Edinburgh: A hush descends and eyes turn to the castle. The skirl of the pipes rises and drums crack the night air as a tide of tunics and tartan flood from the drawbridge. For a limited time in August, witness the incredible spectacle of the Edinburgh Military Tattoo.
  • Stratford: To see or not to see? Visit the timber-framed building where Shakespeare was born and grew up. Then enjoy some time to explore this pretty town.
  • York: Walk with your Travel Director within the city walls to see the York Minster and crocked Shambles.
  • Hadrian's Wall: Stop to see part of the ancient wall that once marked the border of the Roman Empire.
  • Jedburgh: See the Abbey, now in ruins.
  • Edinburgh: Walk with a Local Expert within the walls of the majestic castle perched on its rock, to view the Scottish Crown Jewels, Stone of Destiny and Mons Meg.
  • Edinburgh: Your Local Expert reveals why this is Scotland's City of Culture. Explore the city as you travel along Princes Street to see the Scott Memorial, the neoclassical Adam facades of New Town and the official Scottish residence of the Queen, Palace of Holyroodhouse.
  • Glasgow: See the grand public buildings, including George Square and St. Mungo's Cathedral.
  • Stirling: Travel via the historic site of Bannockburn and view Stirling Castle.
  • Grasmere: Learn about the life of the poet William Wordsworth and visit his grave.
  • Ludlow: See the walls of the castle and Jacobean buildings.
  • Cardiff: During an orientation with your Travel Director, see the castle and Principality Stadium.
  • Bath: Visit the ancient Roman Baths with its colonnaded pool filled by natural thermal springs. Explore the city with your Travel Director and witness the town's fine Georgian architecture.
  • Bath: During an orientation you will see the Royal Crescent, Pulteney Bridge and Bath Abbey.
  • Glastonbury: Pass the ruined Abbey where King Arthur is allegedly buried when you visit this town, famous for its yearly music festival.
  • Plymouth: During your orientation tour with your Travel Director see Plymouth Hoe and the Citadel then continue to the Barbican and Mayflower Steps. Then head out to explore a quaint Cornish fishing village.
  • Stonehenge: Visit the mysterious circle of upright stones, which stands as strong today as it did 3,500 years ago.
  • Scenic Drives: Enjoy the beautiful Scottish countryside and scenery of the Trossachs and Loch Lomond before continuing through the English Lake District, over Severn Bridge and past Dartmoor and the Welsh Marshes.

AUTHENTIC DINING

  • Devon: Savour an unforgettable Celebration Dinner at Heskyn Mill. Join your Travel Director and newfound friends for the ultimate Farm-to-Table dining experience with mouthwatering meals prepared from organic seasonal produce, freshly-picked from the surrounding fields, and of course served with a glass of wine.
  • Dining Summary: 8 Breakfasts (B), 1 Dinner (D) and 2 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.

STAY IN STYLE

  • York: The Hilton York is situated within the city walls, close to the York Minster and the best this city has to offer.
  • Edinburgh: Macdonald Holyrood Hotel is situated in Edinburgh’s beautiful old town, within walking distance of the Scottish Parliament building.
  • Glasgow: The Radisson Blu Hotel, Glasgow features award-winning architecture, boasting a stunning atrium and rooms with wall-to-ceiling windows.
  • Bowness-on-Windermere: The Macdonald Old England Hotel & Spa is contained in a 17th century building and rests on the shores of Windermere, England’s largest lake.
  • Cardiff: Clayton Hotel Cardiff is located in the heart of the city on St. Mary Street, just a short walk from Cardiff's premium sporting facility, Millennium Stadium.
  • Cornish Countryside: Enjoy the best of Cornish hospitality at the plush St. Mellion International Resort, featuring a unique blend of contemporary style and unique facilities sprawled across 450 acres of peaceful countryside.

INCLUDED INSIGHT SERVICES

  • Our highly-skilled Travel Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom and onboard washroom.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.
  • We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
  • From time to time, your Travel Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.
  • You may purchase transfers from/to London Heathrow and Gatwick airports on arrival and departure days, or when additional night accommodation has been booked through Insight Vacations. Alternatively, please make your own way from/to the airport.

Optional experiences

Most Insight trips already include a host of bonus highlights and comprehensive sightseeing. There may also be an exciting array of Optional Experiences which will turn an already amazing experience into the trip of a lifetime! These are entirely optional and can be booked through your Travel Director/Local Representative at the commencement of your trip. Please note, many Optional Experiences are operated by independent third party suppliers, not Insight Vacations.

Prices and availability of Optional Experiences are subject to change.

Dinner In Edinburgh

Edinburgh has more eateries per head than any other city in the UK and your Tour Director knows which ones shine and which ones to shun! Join your fellow companions for a fun evening out in this vibrant city. Visit a prized local restaurant for a delicious three course dinner with a glass of wine, beer or soft drink included.

Adult Price: GBP 38.00

Code: EDI0001

Scottish Dinner & Cabaret

Join us for a lively and memorable evening of traditional Scottish song, dance, tartan and bagpipes. In addition to wine and dinner, your kilted hosts will lead you through some of the best-loved Scottish music and songs. You'll learn a Highland dance or two and sample Scotland’s national dish - haggis. An exceptional Scottish experience!

Adult Price: GBP 60.00

Code: EDI0002

Royal Yacht Britannia

This magnificent ship has hosted some of the most famous people in the world. But, above all, Britannia was home to Her Majesty The Queen and the Royal Family. For four royal couples, Britannia was to provide a honeymoon sanctuary before the onset of married life in the world's most photographed family. Now berthed in Leith, you are welcomed on board to discover the heart and soul of this most special of Royal residences.

Adult Price: GBP 23.00

Code: EDI0003

Edinburgh's Most Haunted

Join our Ghouls and Ghosts to embark upon a scary and mirth-filled tour of Edinburgh's old town as never seen before! We'll enjoy a drink afterwards to calm our nerves before returning to the land of the living.

Adult Price: GBP 27.00

Code: EDI0005

Glasgow Dinner

In recent years, Glasgow has developed a fearsome culinary reputation. With its elegant and chic atmosphere, this restaurant is very much at the forefront. In the hub of Glasgow's vibrant cosmopolitan capital, enjoy an evening of Scottish fayre and experience the unique atmosphere of the city at night. This meal may be offered as a lunch.

Adult Price: GBP 37.00

Code: GLA0001

Lake Cruise

Enjoy a relaxing cruise around picturesque Loch Lomond - the largest stretch of inland water to be found in the British Isles. Settle with a complimentary cup of tea or coffee and enjoy the flawless natural beauty, while all the history and legend is brought to life by on-board commentary.

Adult Price: GBP 15.00

Code: LOC0001

Visit To Medieval Doune Castle

We enjoy a visit of Doune Castle, overlooking the beautiful village of Doune. Famous for its association with Monty Python and now used as a film location for Game of Thrones, Doune is also the main Castle in the hit show, Outlander.

Adult Price: GBP 15.00

Code: LOC0004

Windermere Cruise & Steam Train Ride

There is no better way to appreciate the scenic beauty of the English Lake District than a relaxing cruise and steam train ride. First take to the limpid waters of Windermere for a spectacular voyage, offering magnificent views of rugged mountains, secluded bays and wooded islands. At the southern end of the lake, your cruise connects with a steam locomotive for a nostalgic ride along the banks of the beautiful River Leven to Haverthwaite Station.

Adult Price: GBP 19.00

Code: LAK0001

Arts and Crafts House and Gardens

A rare opportunity to visit an Arts & Crafts house designed by the famous architect MH Baillie Scott, set in stunning lakeside gardens. Refreshments will be included.

Adult Price: GBP 20.00

Code: LAK0005

Pub Dinner

Visit a traditional country pub with its stone floors, real ale, and cosy atmosphere where you can relax and enjoy a mouth-watering meal  featuring freshly cooked traditional British food.

Adult Price: GBP 36.00

Code: CAR0002

Cardiff Castle Tour

Take an ‘insider’ look at this unique Castle started by the Romans 2,000 years ago where we have our own private tour. The refurbishments done in the 1800s have been described as outrageous to opulent, bogus to brilliant and some even say the architect, William Burgess, smoked his opium pipe too much!  His influences include Arab and Islamic art, Hans Christian Anderson's fairy tales and even Aesop's fables. In addition, we can walk on the battlements and climb the 1,000-year-old Norman keep for superb views over Cardiff.

Adult Price: GBP 21.00

Code: CAR0003

Welsh Evening At Millennium Centre

Join us for a lively night celebrating Welsh food and culture at the stunning Welsh Millennium Centre in Cardiff. Enjoy a traditional and locally-sourced three-course meal whilst being entertained by Welsh stories, enchanting music and renowned Welsh singers.

Adult Price: GBP 54.00

Code: CAR0005

Cornwall Dinner

There can be nothing better on a long summer's evening, then a delightful meal in a quintessential English country pub. Enjoy a three-course dinner of superb local food with wine. Cheers!

Adult Price: GBP 40.00

Code: COR0007

Plymouth Harbour Cruise

Join us for a pleasant cruise around the harbour of this most famous seaport. Your skipper provides all the informative commentary as you enjoy panoramic vistas of Plymouth Hoe, site of Drake’s legendary game of bowls.  View the Mayflower steps, where the Pilgrim Fathers set sail for America, and ships weighed anchor for Australia, New Zealand and Newfoundland. Continue into the Royal Navy Dockyard for a chance to see some of the more modern vessels of the Royal Navy

Adult Price: GBP 15.00

Code: PLY0001

Accommodation

 

Hilton York

York (Traditional) - England

The Hilton York is situated within the city walls, close to the York Minster and the best this city has to offer.

Macdonald Holyrood Hotel, Edinburgh.

Edinburgh (Traditional) - Scotland

Macdonald Holyrood Hotel is situated in Edinburgh’s beautiful old town, within walking distance of the Scottish Parliament building.

Radisson Blu Hotel, Glasgow

Glasgow (Contemporary) - Scotland

The Radisson Blu Glasgow features award-winning architecture, boasting a stunning atrium and rooms with wall-to-ceiling windows

Macdonald Old England Hotel & Spa, Windermere.

Windermere (Traditional) - England

The Macdonald Old England Hotel & Spa is contained in a 17th century building and rests on the shores of Windermere, England’s largest lake.

Clayton Hotel Cardiff

Cardiff (Traditional) - Wales

Clayton Hotel Cardiff is located in the heart of the city on St. Mary Street, just a short walk from Cardiff's premium sporting facility, Millennium Stadium.

St. Mellion International Resort, Saltash, Cornish Coast.

Saltash (Resort) - England

Enjoy the best of Cornish hospitality at the plush St. Mellion International Resort, featuring a unique blend of contemporary style and unique facilities sprawled across 450 acres of peaceful countryside.

Guest Reviews & Experiences

Our guests rate us 4.5 out of 5 based on
11450 independent user reviews received during the past year.

  • 26 October, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Insight covered all the places that we had hoped to see and many other sites, towns, villages, lakes , castles and cathedrals that added to our experience. Everyday was enjoyable. Would have liked another day to spend more time in Edinburgh and another hour or two at Bath and Stonehenge. Had great weather and fellow travelers. Thank you Insight!

    Service: Trip was excellent. Laurent took great care of us and driver Steve with him made a great team. Luggage, hotels, many interesting stops all handled well with lots of breaks from the bus ride. Many extras and surprises ( flourishes). Overall this exceeded what we expected. We traveled in comfort and had background historical information from Laurent and other local guides.

  • 25 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: I enjoyed each stop that we visited.

    Service: the whole trip went smoothly and effeciently thanks to our guide.

  • 21 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: More time should be allotted for Stonehenge. We should not have been dropped off on a busy London street with our luggage and no one to ensure things went well the next day.

    Service: This is the second Insight tour we have taken this year. We also took a Trafalgar tour last spring. For the first time we were disappointed with the tour. It occurred on the last day and after the paper survey, something happened. We were at Stonehenge and only allotted 1 1/2 hours. It was the last day of the tour. We were headed to London after Stonehenge to our hotel for the night which ended the tour with flights out the next morning. Others in the tour wondered why the rush to London. We were supposed to get to London around 4:30. We arrived in London about that time, and we were deposited on the sidewalk with our luggage on a busy London street. The guide and the bus driver said goodbye, drove off, and that was it. We were left alone to get our bags up the stairs into the hotel and to ensure we caught our flights the next day. This is a first for us. On the previous Trafalgar and Insight tours, the guide was there the next day to ensure we left for the airport. Other groups we have taken (Roads Scholar, Hurtigruten, Viking, and cruise ships) ensured we got off safely.

  • 18 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Goos selections of places to visit without rushing or being to tired at the end of the day

    Service: Excelente service and organization

  • 16 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Felt I would have liked a bit more time in a few places. A lot of time on the bus

    Service: Everything except exit email. The last item did not happen. yet?

  • 16 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: I would remove stop in Stratford and stop somewhere closer to York so there is more time in York

    Service: I would recommend Insight and will use again

  • 15 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: The two cities that we had very little time in were Glasgow and Cardiff. Yes, there were optional dinners and/or castle tours, but with those, there was little, if any time for exploring on one's own. Realizing that the drive time between these cities is very time consuming, I would suggest extending the time of this tour to two nights at each location for this reason....

    Service: Tour director was very friendly, helpful, courteous.

  • 12 October, 2018

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    Trip: Needs more 2 night stops. There wasn't time to find lunch and explore the towns. Glasgow was just a night stop and we didn't see much of the city.

    Service: Both the tour director and driver did a fabulous job. My only complaint was the room in the Governor Hotel at the start of the tour. It was extremely cramped for two people and the bathroom plumbing needs updating. Laurent knew his stuff. His historical knowledge was first class.The evening meals were varied and met most peoples taste buds.

  • 12 October, 2018

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    Trip: I had another great trip with Insight. The reason I gave 4 not 5 stars was that there were a couple of stops en route that in hindsight, I could have skipped. I’m sure Cardiff would have been nice but only having one night there was a bit of a waste. I also would rather have had an extra night in York or Edinburgh instead of the night in Glasgow. Other than these couple of things, the trip was very good

    Service: our driver and tour director were very good. The driver was meticulous about the cleanliness of the bus and I felt very safe. Laurent, our TD, was very knowledgeable and did his best to make sure everyone had what they needed during the trip.

  • 12 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: The tour guide was great, the driver was outstanding. Had time to see many interesting and historical sites as well as have individual time to ourselves.

    Service: Stacey was very nice, professional as well as very responsive to all my questions. Yes, I will probably use your company again.

  • 11 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Itinerary was good other than the below: Overall lunch break was a little to short. Allocated time to do Royal Britannia optional tour was far too short. Have to skip lunch to finish the tour. Meeting at Grosvenor Hotel was not a ideal. The hotel does not have a proper drop off area. It was quite a mess when we have to say goodbye and collect our own luggage along the main road pathway.

    Service: Customer service at the NATAS was friendly and warm.

  • 08 October, 2018

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    Trip: I would have excluded Glasgow.

    Service: The trip was outstanding in itinerary and our travel guide was marvelous. The only disapointment was the very end. Dropped off on the side walk in London in front of the hotel. Do not understand why Insight could not have had check in and luggage handled like we did every other day. Bad last impression.

*Trip prices and dates are correct at the time of the website going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. Prices displayed reflect available discounted rates such Early Payment Discount or Last Minute Deals (discounts are not combinable). Discounts may be withdrawn at anytime, book early to confirm space. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however is subject to change, please confirm all details at time of booking. For full terms and conditions, please refer to our Booking Conditions page.