England is a wondrous dichotomy. In one sense, it is a country determined to keep its traditions and revere its own millennial history. In another, it is a nation on the cutting edge of art, fashion and all things culturally significant.
From soaring medieval cathedrals to the latest postmodern structures, from prehistoric Stonehenge to Regency Bath, from one-pub Cotswold villages to London's buzzing eateries, your time in Southern England will have you experiencing both sides of this captivating land. In the evenings you’ll relax in well-appointed accommodations that offer all the comforts of home.
Tour dynamic London and visit its most famous attractions such as Big Ben, The Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, and Shakespeare’s Globe Theater. Set out for the gloriously pretty English countryside and stroll the cobbled streets. You may have a spiritual experience touring mysterious Stonehenge, and a literary experience touring The Waggon and Horses Inn frequented by Charles Dickens. This trip will have you so immersed in all things English, you may start craving bangers and mash and afternoon tea!
Enjoy a personalized vacation that best suits your needs, developed by one of our experienced destination experts. Relax during your trip with our 24/7 support and expert local guidance.
For your added comfort, we will have a Meet & Greet assistant for you upon your arrival. A representative will be waiting for you in the arrivals hall after you pass through customs to assist. If a private airport transfer has been arranged, this representative will help to co-ordinate meeting up with your private chauffeur at the airport. You will then be escorted to the vehicle and onto the hotel to assist with check in.
Meet your driver at Heathrow airport, and take a private transfer to your hotel.
A welcome package with a city map, train tickets (if relevant), and any other touristic information that we deem you may find useful will be waiting for you upon your arrival at your first hotel on your trip.
Depart for your Magic of London tour, where aboard a coach, you'll drive past some of London's most famous landmarks including Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, arrive at the Tower of London where you will be met on the middle drawbridge by a Yeoman Warder. You will be led into this world heritage site before it opens to the public and taken on a guided tour explaining the history behind this fortress of imprisonment. You will be the first group to see the Crown Jewels before enjoying some free time to explore on your own. Why not visit Traitors Gate, the armouries or the Bloody Tower and keep an eye out for the famous Ravens. Departing from the Tower, head to The Mall to watch the Changing of the Guard ceremony as one of the Queen's Household Regiments march from St. James Palace to Buckingham Palace, dressed in their world famous tunics and busbies. (Please note, the Changing of the Guard does not occur every day - enjoy a photo stop at Buckingham Palace when not running). Next, take a short ferry ride on the River Thames, enjoying excellent views of St. Paul's Cathedral and Shakespeare's Globe. You'll then have free time for independent lunch. Also, there is an opportunity for a photo stop at Westminster Abbey. The afternoon part of the tour begins with a visit to St. Paul's Cathedral. Explore the masterpiece designed by Wren in 1673 with a professional guide, taking time to listen to the 1695 organ that Mendelssohn once played and visit the tombs of Nelson and Wellington. There will also be a chance to test the unique acoustics of the Whispering Gallery (not normally visited by other tour groups). On Sundays when there is restricted viewing at the Cathedral, there will be an opportunity to enter and enjoy one of the services. Then end the day with a drive across the river to the South Bank. Enjoy magnificent views of Big Ben and The Houses of Parliament while enjoying Champagne Afternoon Tea in the luxurious surroundings of The Executive Lounge at The Park Plaza Westminster Pier.
2nd August 2015 – due to Prudential Ride London taking place, most of the streets will be closed and tours will not operate.
There are some great restaurants in the West End of London.Here are a few suggestions: J Sheekey, an incredibly smart seafood restaurant, Mildred's, London's best veggie restaurant, Sketch, the trendiest place in London, specializing in some of the best French food you'll ever taste, or for those looking for something simple and cheerful, enjoy a nice meal out at Zipangu. Or try the amazingly stylish Corrigan’s Mayfair.
Enjoy time at leisure to explore at your own pace, or relax at your hotel.
Transfer using a local taxi. Please note that this is not included in trip price and is payable locally.
Enjoy a relaxing train ride from London Paddington Station to Bath.
Enjoy a private walking tour of Bath - visit the Royal Crescent, the Circus and the Georgian streets of Bath. Stroll along the river, visit the Abbey and learn the history of the Roman Baths. The Royal Crescent is a residential road of 30 houses, laid out in a crescent and was built starting 1767 and completed 1774. With its half Colosseum shape, it has been compared to the beautiful Versailles just outside of Paris. The Circus is an example of Georgian architecture in the city of Bath, completed in 1768. The name comes from the Latin 'circus', which means a ring, oval or circle. Divided into three segments of equal length, the Circus is a circular space surrounded by large townhouses. Each of the curved segments faces one of the three entrances, ensuring that whichever way a visitor enters there is a classical facade straight ahead.
Meet your mini coach at the Best Western Abbey Hotel at 8:30am, 1 minute walk from Bath Abbey. We drive through the beautiful countryside to Stonehenge. This monument has aroused awe and curiosity since the Norman Conquest We stop at the Stonehenge for one hour so you can explore this ancient monument. We travel further along to the Avebury Stone Circles which is a lesser known megalithic monument, and nearly 1000 years older. This monument is a bit more untouched by other tourists, and you are free to take in the magical charm of these stones as you wish. We continue on through Silbury Hill (the largest manmade object in prehistoric Europe); the Cherhill White Horse (nearly 300 years old and among the landscape in this area outside of Bath); Waggon and Horses (traditional thatched inn, frequently visited by Charles Dickens); and finishing up at the Lacock National Trust Village. This wonderful village consists of properties which date from the 13th and 18th centuries. It was once a prosperous woolen town, but now seems like a village trapped in time. We usually make a stop here as there is a wonderful country pub offering good home cooked food and real ale! Harry Potter and Pride and Prejudice have filmed scenes here. We return back to Central Bath by 4:30PM.
Just a short walk away from your Central Bath Hotel, the Roman Baths Museum awaits. Enjoy a self-guided tour of the ancient Roman Baths from the period when Rome controlled much of England. They are below the modern street level and have four main features, the Sacred Spring, the Roman Temple, the Roman bath house and finds from Roman Bath; the Georgian Pump Room is on the ground level.
Entrance is approximately 12GBP per adult and 7.50GBP per child (6-16yrs). Children 5 years and under are free of charge.
Open daily, the museum is one of England's most popular attractions. Spend an hour here to fully appreciate the museum.
Back outside, at the end of Bath Street, stands the Cross Bath where Mary of Modena, wife of James II, erected a cross in gratitude for her pregnancy in 1688. Opposite is the hot bath, the third bath built over Bath's Hot Springs. These two historic sites have been restored, and together with the Hetling Pump room, are now part of the Thermae Bath Spa, a privately run and superbly designed complex where you can relax in the thermal waters of the roof-top spa pool (17GBP pp).
Enjoy a relaxing train ride from Bath to London Paddington Station (approximately 2 hours).
The charming boutique hotel The Caesar is an ideal option for stays in the heart of London, only a few minutes from Hyde Park and within walking distance of Oxford Street and Notting Hill shopping areas. Located in a typical and recently remodeled Victorian building, enjoy this peaceful setting in a residential area with privileged views of Queens Gardens. A tranquil oasis to unwind from the city’s frantic rhythm. Its classic English-style front is in contrast with the modern and minimalist interior, decorated with fascinating Roman mosaics. The hotel features 140 stylish fully refurbished guest bedrooms, with warm comfortable atmospheres and modern amenities. With a gymnasium, sauna, business room and two unique gastronomic areas, enabling you to savor creative Spanish cuisine in the heart of England’s capital.
Situated in a classic Georgian building dating back to 1742, the 3-star Abbey Hotel (formerly Best Western Abbey Hotel), enjoys the perfect city center location, with Bath’s historic attractions and famous shopping streets only a short stroll away. Independently owned, this unique hotel boasts an intriguing blend of stylish, contemporary comfort and historic character. Recently upgraded throughout, the hotel boasts just about the most comfortable beds in the business, a true testament to a great night's sleep.
Enjoy luxury surroundings and dedicated service at the Crowne Plaza London Heathrow hotel, a 6-minute drive from your flight at London Heathrow Airport. Walk into the gleaming, minimalist Lobby at Crowne Plaza London Heathrow, where Front Desk staffs are waiting to welcome you. Unpack in your spacious room or Suite, or relax in the large indoor pool and sauna at Spirit Health Club. The ambiance in Orwell's Brasserie makes for a sophisticated dining experience and you can unwind over a pint at O'Driscolls Irish pub.
Vanessa Oquendo ,
April 21, 2014
"Melissa Field was extremely helpful! She was courteous, professional, knowledgeable, and friendly! She kept me updated on the status of everything and provided timely correspondence. She took ownership for any problems I had and remedied them. I had the most amazing time of my life in Iceland and Paris! I would not have experienced everything without the help of Kensington Tours."
Marilynn Weaver ,
April 21, 2014
"All of our guides were beyond fabulous! Our time in Dublin was much too short, would have loved to stay there at least one more full day. Would recommend extending this package to 15 days for any future visits. The train to Edinburgh was super! Beautiful scenery and great steak pies!"
Ann Saxon ,
November 06, 2013
"Our trip was fantastic!!! I cannot say enough good things. Lianne worked with our exact dates and time frame beautifully.Our drivers were prompt and friendly. The private guides were so knowledgeable. We left with an appreciation of the history, the culture, and the beauty of Andulasia. We were very pleased and will certainly recommend your company to friends and family."
Coby Scherr ,
November 05, 2013
"Everyone involved in our Portugal trip made it terrific. Exactly as advertised. Every event on time and most pleasant. Guides were well-informed, courteous and friendly. Really made for a great journey every time. Each hotel was clean, upgraded and staffed with knowledgeable and friendly folks. Breakfasts were complete -- almost too much to eat. It will always be a wonderful memory thanks to Kensington Tours."
Couples Dellinger & Hubbell ,
November 06, 2013
"We've been raving to everyone about the food, the friendliness of the people and the amazing history and sites in Turkey. Yes, we want to go back."
John Edstrom ,
October 22, 2013
"Overall, our tour in Spain was very enjoyable, and well planned and executed. Our private tour of the Alhambra was excellent. Virginia, tour guide for royal palace ruins outside of Cordoba, was also excellent. In Seville, we went to the Flamenco Show/dinner, and the Flamenco was outstanding!"
Kevin Wilshere ,
October 19, 2013
"Great trip to Spain! Thanks again for all your help, Lianne. The destinations, hotels, guides and everything were all top notch."
Chery Westlund ,
November 07, 2013
"My husband and I took a 3 week vacation to southern Europe and North Africa and had a great time. All the guides were very knowledgeable and bent over backwards to accommodate us. The arrangements made by Kensington went off without a hitch. This is our second trip with Kensington (we went to Peru in 2009) and we will certainly book with them again."
Randy Gramlich ,
October 07, 2013
"Thank you for your follow up, we both loved our time in Croatia. It’s really a beautiful place, especially the coast. Your choice of hotels was great. It was an incredible view from the Bellevue hotel in Dubrovnik and the Vestibule in Split was in the best possible location. We were able to relax in our room listening to the wonderful singers in the courtyard and its central location made it so easy to walk anywhere we wanted to see with ease. "
Jay Steffan ,
September 24, 2013
"We just returned from a 10 day trip to Paris and Normandy. We spent three nights in Paris and then enjoyed a seven night cruise on the Seine to Normandy with AMA Waterways. The time in Paris was well spent and has piqued our interest to return for a more thorough visit. Guide Wafaa Lankey was superb in our visit to Versailles. The Seine cruise was relaxing and beautiful. So many wonderful little towns and we wished we had more time in each one to explore and enjoy.
We traveled to Croatia and Slovenia using Kensington earlier this year which was a fantastic trip."
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