Elegance of Great Britain - Insight Vacations

Elegance of Great Britain (Summer 2017)

Duration: 15 days Visiting: England

Prices from US${{lowPrice | number:0}}

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  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Highlights
  • Optional experiences
  • Accommodation
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A must for those who have a love of literature and Britain. Stately homes, historic castles and beautiful gardens shape a delightful itinerary, evoking a bygone age.

Insight Inclusive tours now include all evening meals and sightseeing experiences.

  1. Day 1

    Your Journey Begins

    Board your overnight flight to Europe (please ask about our great deals).

  2. Day 2

    Welcome to London

    Check in to your hotel, then there is time to relax.

  3. Day 3

    Discovering London

    An included half day sightseeing tour of London's West End shows you all the major sights - Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Trafalgar Square and Buckingham Palace. Your Insight Vacations Representative is also on hand today for help and advice.

  4. Day 4

    From London to Chartwell, and Hampshire

    Leave London and make your way into the Kent countryside. At the pretty village of Westerham, Winston Churchill watches over the neat village green and you visit his nearby residence of Chartwell. Later, join your Tour Director in your country style hotel for a warm and friendly Welcome Reception, with drinks and the opportunity to mingle and get to know each other over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine.

  5. Day 5 - Relaxed Start

    New Forest, Beaulieu and Salisbury Excursion

    (Relaxed Start) Take a scenic drive through the woods and glades of the New Forest to Beaulieu Abbey (once a Cistercian Abbey), the stately home of Lord Montagu. Tour the Palace House, Abbey ruins, and visit his lordship's collection of cars in the National Motor Museum. Travel on to Salisbury to see the tallest spire in the land atop the 13th century cathedral. Discover over 750 years of history during your cathedral visit, and see the world's best preserved original copy of the Magna Carta. In the evening, join the locals over a hearty dinner in a countryside pub.

  6. Day 6

    Winchester, Avebury and Shakespeare’s Stratford

    Visit the cathedral town of Winchester, where King Alfred stands guard in the High Street. The country roads of Wiltshire lead you past pretty villages to Avebury, which is partially situated in a huge prehistoric henge monument of several stone circles. Wander among the stones of the inner circles and the great outer circle and witness the immense bank and ditch. Next, continue on to pretty Stratford, beautifully situated on the River Avon. Your hotel is set in its own grounds, just a short walk from the Royal Shakespeare Theatre and the town's wealth of black and white timber framed buildings. In the evening, you are offered a fine selection of restaurants for your Dine Around Evening.

  7. Day 7 - Relaxed Start

    Blenheim and the Villages of the Cotswolds Experience

    An enchanting day awaits in the morning. Cross the beautiful Cotswold hills, a chocolate box scene of golden stone villages with roses round the doors. Tour the magnificent house and gardens of Blenheim Palace, the greatest building of the English Baroque. Return to Stratford for a look through the birthplace of William Shakespeare, full of interesting memorabilia and artefacts relating to his life. Later, join your Tour Director for a traditional English Roast Dinner, with all the trimmings.

  8. Day 8

    Llangollen then across the Welsh Marches to the Lake District

    Cross the border to the small Welsh town of Llangollen. Situated on the River Dee and seeped in myth and legend, spend time exploring the Victoria Promenade and its delightful shops and cafés. Cross back into England and continue north to the English Lake District, where your traditional country style hotel is set in the pretty village of Bowness-on-Windermere, right on England's largest lake.

  9. Day 9 - Relaxed Start

    English Poets and the Lake District Experience

    (Relaxed Start) Devote the day to a scenic wonderland of rugged mountains and tranquil waters - an inspiration to a host of English poets. Visit Wordsworth's grave in the small churchyard at Grasmere. Appreciate the scenic beauty of the English Lake District on a relaxing cruise admiring the magnificent views of rugged mountains, secluded bays and wooded islands. Then, embark on a nostalgic steam train ride along the banks of the beautiful River Leven.

  10. Day 10

    Over the Border to Edinburgh

    Cross the Scottish border at Gretna – for years the destination of eloping English lovers - before continuing through the Southern Uplands to Edinburgh. In the afternoon, a Local Expert guides you through Edinburgh Castle containing the Honours of Scotland, the oldest Royal regalia in the British Isles. Follow the Royal Mile to Holyrood Palace where Mary Queen of Scots lived. Drive along Princes Street, past the ornate Scott Memorial, to the 18th century ‘New Town’ with its classical Adam facades. In the evening enjoy a fresh and tasty dinner, “like a Highland breeze wafting up your kilt”.

  11. Day 11 - Relaxed Start

    Edinburgh, Scotland’s Capital of Culture

    (Relaxed Start) A day of free time. Why not discover the Botanical Gardens, visit the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art or just spend the day browsing the shops and getting a feel for this vibrant city? In the evening, selected departures attend the spectacular Edinburgh Military Tattoo. Tonight, whether you prefer a gourmet restaurant or an authentic meal of Scots specialities, your Freestyle Evening offers you the ultimate in dining choices!

  12. Day 12

    Alnwick Castle and Yorkshire

    In the morning, cross into England and journey through Northumberland to visit Alnwick Castle, steeped in history and used as the location for many films and TV productions, most famously Hogwarts in Harry Potter. Continue onto Hadrian’s wall, once the boundary of the civalised world in Roman times. Stay for the next two nights in a grand Victorian hotel, set among a landscape that fuelled the imagination of the Brontë sisters in writing their classic novels.

  13. Day 13 - Relaxed Start

    Excursion to York

    (Relaxed Start) Journey to York, one of Britain's most historic cities. Walk within the town walls with a Local Expert to see the huge Minster, Britain's largest medieval cathedral, and explore the maze of narrow streets, including the Shambles. In the afternoon, why not visit Harewood House, one of Britain's finest stately homes, magnificently set in the Yorkshire countryside. Later in the evening, raise your glass with friends at your finalé Celebration Dinner.

  14. Day 14

    Past Robin Hood Country to Cambridge and on to London

    Hear legendary tales as you journey towards ‘Robin Hood Country’ even though little remains of his beloved Sherwood Forest. Get a glimpse of Britain's ancient tradition of learning as you visit Cambridge. Enjoy free time to explore the tranquil quadrangles of the colleges, stroll beside the River Cam for superb views of King's College Chapel or spend time in the colourful and historic open-air market. In the afternoon, return to London’s Amba Marble Arch.

  15. Day 15

    Homeward Bound

    Your journey draws to a close after breakfast this morning

Highlights

 

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCES

  • Chartwell: It's still 1939 inside the home of Sir Winston Churchill, laid out with his many possessions.
  • Beaulieu: Visit the 14th century Palace House and gardens, and tour the incredible collection of cars at the National Motor Museum.
  • Salisbury: Visit the historic 13th century cathedral and witness the world's best preserved original copy of the Magna Carta.
  • Blenheim Palace: Witness a masterpiece of the English Baroque, brimming with priceless art and tapestries.
  • Stratford: Venture inside the timber-framed building where William Shakespeare was born and grew up.
  • Windermere: Relax aboard a scenic cruise and steam train ride through the stunning Lake District.
  • Edinburgh: Walk with an expert within the walls of the Castle to view the Scottish Crown Jewels.
  • Edinburgh: For a limited time in August, witness the breathtaking spectacle of the Military Tattoo.
  • Alwnick Castle: Visit the castle, steeped in history.

ADDITIONAL INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Westerham: See Winston Churchill's statue on the village green.
  • Winchester: Visit the cathedral town.
  • Salisbury: See the highest spire in England.
  • Avebury: Visit the famous stone circle.
  • Ludlow: See the ruined castle and Jacobean timbered buildings .
  • Lake District: Learn about the life of the poet William Wordsworth and visit his grave in Grasmere.
  • Edinburgh: See Holyroodhouse Palace and the 18th century ‘New Town'.
  • Borders: See Jedburgh Abbey and stop at Hadrian's Wall.
  • York: See York Minster, city walls and medieval “Shambles”.
  • Cambridge:  Walk among the historic colleges.
  • Scenic drives: Cotswolds, New Forest, Lake District.

AUTHENTIC REGIONAL FLAVOURS

  • Stratford: Choose from a selection of restaurants for a Dine-Around evening.
  • Stratford: Enjoy a traditional Roast Dinner with all the trimmings.
  • Edinburgh: The choice is yours on your Freestyle Evening where you can indulge in whatever you fancy.
  • Yorkshire: For the real taste of Yorkshire, enjoy your Celebration Dinner with an included pint of bitter or local beer.
  • 10 Full Breakfasts (FB), 2 three-course Dinners (D); plus 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 4 Restaurant Dinners (RD), 1 Dine-Around (DA), 1 Freestyle Evening (FSD) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) all with wine, plus tea or coffee.

STAY AT THE BEST ADDRESSES

  • Bowness-on-Windermere: Nestled on the shore of England's largest lake, experience traditional country house charm at The Old England Hotel.
  • Shipley: The grand and historic Victorian Hollins Hall Marriott Hotel offers superb leisure facilities, including an indoor heated swimming pool and an 18-hole championship golf course.

ADDITIONAL FIVE STAR SERVICES

  • Our highly-skilled Insight Tour Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend in a foreign land.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat touring coach, with extended Business Class legroom and on-board restroom.
  • 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. Plus, we 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 Tour Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish - a local tidbit representing authentic food or beverages unique to the destination.
  • London Airport transfer service available.

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.

Accommodation

 

Botley Park

Southampton (Scenic) - England

The Stratford

STRATFORD UPON AVON (Traditional) - England

The Stratford is an award-winning boutique hotel in the centre of this historic town.

Holyrood Hotel

Edinburgh (Central) - Scotland

Holyrood Hotel, Edinburgh

Marriott Hollins Hall

Shipley (Scenic) - England

Marriott Hollins Hall, Shipley

Guest Reviews & Experiences

Our guests rate us 4.6 out of 5 based on 11318 independent user reviews received during the past year.

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*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.
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