15 Day - Highlights of Britain - Escorted Tour
Windsor (1) - Plymouth (3) - Cardiff (1) - Chester Area (2) - Edinburgh (3) - York (2) - London (2)
- Scottish & Welsh Dinner/Shows
- Windsor Castle
- Explore Devon & Cornwall
- St Andrews - Home of Golf
- Edinburgh Castle
- Sheepdog Trials
- Sightseeing by luxury coach
- Professional tour director
- 14 or 15 nights in hotels listed
- Full breakfast daily (B) except on day 1
- 10 dinners (D) including
- Welcome dinner in Windsor
- Cardiff Castle Welsh Banquet
- Scottish Evening in Edinburgh
- Historic Pub in York
- 6 table d'hote dinners
- Welcome get-together drink
- Tours of Cardiff, Edinburgh and London
- Walking tours of Windsor, Shrewsbury, Conwy, Chester, St Andrews, York and Whitby
- Sheepdog trials in North Wales
- Reserved seats for Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo on July 31 to August 14 departures
- North Yorkshire Moors Railway vintage train ride
- London open-top bus tour (16-day tour only)
- Visits and admissions to Windsor Castle, Stonehenge, Lanhydrock House, Land’s End, Minack Theatre, Roman Baths and Pump Room, Cardiff Castle, Old Blacksmith’s Shop at Gretna Green, Edinburgh Castle, St Andrews Cathedral, St Andrews Castle, York Minster, Castle Howard, Shakespeare’s Birthplace and Tower of London
- Headsets for walking tours
- Deluxe carry-on backpack, ticket wallet, luggage tags & strap
- All local taxes, hotel service charges & porterage for one suitcase per person
- Free Wi-Fi on coaches and in hotel lobbies
Superior First Class
- Macdonald Windsor Hotel, Windsor (1 night)
- Duke of Cornwall Hotel, Plymouth (3 nights)
- Clayton Hotel, Cardiff (1 night)
- Cranage Hall Hotel, Holmes Chapel, near Chester (2 nights)
- Village Hotel Edinburgh, Edinburgh (3 nights)
- York Marriott, York (2 nights)
- Doubletree by Hilton - West End, London (2 nights)
15 Day - Highlights of Britain - Itinerary
Day 1: London Arrival & Windsor Castle
Your vacation starts at your Windsor hotel at 2:30 pm when you meet your tour director. Close to your hotel, 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. After dinner take a brief walk around this compact and historic town with a local guide.
Day 2: Stonehenge & Salisbury
Drive to Salisbury Plain to marvel at the prehistoric circle of vast monoliths of Stonehenge and learn about the primitive builders who managed to create such an enduring monument. The Visitor Centre will give you background information on its creation. Stop in Salisbury, a charming old city that is dominated by the cathedral with the tallest spire in England. Arrive in Plymouth and check in to your hotel, close to the harbor where the Pilgrim Fathers sailed from in 1620.
Day 3: Bodmin Moor & Lanhydrock House
Today drive through Bodmin Moor, an area of unspoiled natural beauty. Stop for photos at Jamaica Inn, made famous by Daphne du Maurier's tale of smugglers. Visit Lanhydrock House to explore this late-Victorian country house with grand rooms as well as servants’ quarters. Back in Plymouth see the Mayflower Steps and cruise to Royal William Yard, former Royal Navy buildings which now host restaurants for independent dining.
Day 4: St Michael's Mount, Lands End & Minack Theater
Drive to the coastal village of Marazion for photos of the majestic outline of St Michael’s Mount, an important pilgrimage destination. Drive to Land’s End, the most westerly point of Britain. Visit the Minack Theatre, an open-air arena that was first opened in the 1930s. Enjoy lovely views and gardens with exotic and native plants. Return to Plymouth in time for dinner.
Day 5: Roman Baths & Cardiff Castle
Travel north to explore Bath, popular for its natural hot springs with the Romans 2,000 years ago. Tour the wonderfully-preserved Roman Baths and Pump Room, renowned for mineral-rich hot springs. Drive to Cardiff and for a sightseeing tour followed by a brief walking tour around the bay. Tour Cardiff Castle before sitting down for a Welsh evening with dinner and some lively Welsh music and entertainment.
Day 6: Hay-on-Wye & Shrewsbury
Drive through the Brecon Beacons National Park to view some majestic Welsh scenery. Stop in Hay-on-Wye, a town that specializes in second-hand books. You will see bookstores everywhere, making a browse around the town center great fun. Continue your drive north through the Shropshire Hills to Shrewsbury, a picturesque town that is close to the Welsh border with England. Take a walking tour with the town crier to see black-and-white buildings that line the narrow streets and learn about the history of the area. Travel through Cheshire to your hotel, located near Holmes Chapel to the east of Chester.
Day 7: North Wales & Chester
Today drive through Llangollen and the Horseshoe Pass for wonderful vistas. Visit a farm to see trained dogs herding sheep and travel to Conwy, a medieval town dominated by a huge castle. Take a walking tour around the picturesque streets and see the smallest house in Britain. Drive to Chester where another walking tour will reveal medieval black-and-white buildings and Roman walls. Return to Holmes Chapel for dinner.
Day 8: Lake District & Scottish Evening
Travel through the glorious Lake District, associated with the children’s author, Beatrix Potter, and the poet, William Wordsworth. Stop in the charming village of Grasmere, where Wordsworth lived and is buried. Stop at the Famous Blacksmith’s Shop in Gretna Green, a popular shopping venue for quality Scottish goods. Continue north to your next hotel, set in spacious grounds a few miles outside Edinburgh, for a lively Scottish Evening with dinner and entertainment.
Day 9: Edinburgh Castle & 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 narrow medieval houses are clustered and tour Edinburgh Castle to see the Crown Jewels of Scotland and the Stone of Destiny. The afternoon is free for independent activities. On Jul 31 to Aug 14 departures, experience the world-famous Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.
Day 10: Excursion to St Andrews
Travel north to St Andrews, famously known as the “Home of Golf” and location of Scotland’s oldest university. Take a panoramic drive around the town and take a walking tour to visit the picturesque ruins of St Andrews Castle and Cathedral. Spend some free time to have a browse around the town. Return to Edinburgh for an evening at leisure.
Day 11: Scottish Borders & York
Drive south to Jedburgh for a look around and see the ruined Jedburgh Abbey. Continue to York for a walking tour to appreciate narrow medieval streets, especially the Shambles and visit the mighty York Minster, which is famous for its stained glass windows. In the evening dine in a centuries-old pub with plenty of atmosphere and take a lighthearted ghost walking tour afterwards.
Day 12: Historic Train Ride & Castle Howard
Travel on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway by vintage locomotive. Stroll around the picturesque harbor, winding streets and quaint buildings of Whitby. Tour the elaborate chambers of Castle Howard, an imposing 18th century mansion where “Brideshead Revisited” was filmed and sit down to a cream tea.
Day 13: Shakespeare's Birthplace & London
Travel to Stratford-upon-Avon to visit Shakespeare’s Birthplace to see an exhibition about his life and work. 2016 marks the 400th anniversary of his death. Walk through the furnished house where he was born. Drive through the Cotswolds and onwards to your hotel in London.
Day 14: Tower of London & City Sightseeing
Take a panoramic tour of central London to see famous landmarks including Piccadilly Circus, Nelson’s Column flanked by huge lions in Trafalgar Square, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. Visit the mighty Tower of London to see the many fortresses, Beefeaters, ravens and the priceless Crown Jewels. The afternoon and evening are free.
Day 15: Depart for Home
Your program ends after breakfast.