Your 8-Day Round-Trip Itinerary from London
Day 1 – Journey to Stratford-upon-Avon and on to York
Indulge your love of theatre and poetry this morning as we travel to romantic Stratford-upon-Avon, made famous by its favorite son, William Shakespeare, whose extraordinary works have been admired by audiences for over 500 years. View Anne Hathaway’s thatched cottage and visit Shakespeare’s Birthplace and Visitor Centre for insights into the life of the ‘Bard of Avon’, before exploring the charming cobblestone streets of his hometown. Continue to the ancient cathedral city of York where we will enjoy an orientation walk to view its ancient city walls, picturesque Shambles and magnificent 800-year-old Minster. Join your Travel Director and fellow travel companions this evening for a memorable Welcome Reception and delicious local pub fare. Spend the night in the Holiday Inn
Day 2 – Cross Hadrian’s Wall and onwards to Edinburgh
After breakfast, we will venture north to the medieval riverside town of Durham, whose exquisite 11th-century Durham Cathedral sits imposingly alongside Durham Castle watching over the medieval streets below. We cross what was once the northern frontier of the Roman Empire, Hadrian’s Wall, before enjoying a scenic drive through the soul-stirring landscapes of Northumberland National Park. Admire spectacular views of the windswept Cheviot Hills as you cross the Scottish border, stopping to admire the 12th-century ruins of Jedburgh Abbey en route to Edinburgh. Your hotel tonight is the Jurys Inn
**Optional available on Day 2: Edinburgh by Night and Dinner – We’ll drive into the old city of Edinburgh to see the city at night with photo opportunities of the Castle and the Grassmarket, famous for historic executions and when possible visit one of the most haunted graveyards and see the grave of Greyfriars Bobby, the famous Skye Terrier. Then, we’ll make our way to a local restaurant for a delicious dinner and drink. Adult Price: £42.00*
Day 3 – Discover Enchanting Edinburgh
Enjoy breakfast with your fellow travelers before you fall in love with the enchanting city of Edinburgh. You’ll join a Local Specialist to discover what lies behind its medieval façades. Ramble up the Royal Mile and enjoy astounding views of the Palace of Holyroodhouse and the Scottish Parliament. Visit Edinburgh Castle perched atop Castle Rock overlooking the city. Spend some free time this afternoon strolling through Edinburgh and admiring medieval relics.
**Optional available on Day 3: Dinner and Drive to Historic Torphichen – Enjoy a scenic drive to the ancient village, associated with Scottish kings and Knights Templar. At the Torphichen Inn, your arrival will be toasted by our gracious host before enjoying an excellent dinner of local specialties and entertainment. Adult Price: £48.00*
**Optional available on Day 3: Scottish Show with Dinner – Tonight is your chance to put on that tartan and join us for an evening of singing, dancing and bagpipe playing at a famous venue. You’ll enjoy delicious food and wine, join in the singing and watch a Highland dance or two. There’s even a chance to sample a Scottish national dish. Adult Price: £62.00*
Day 4 – Venture into the Scottish Highlands
After breakfast, cross the Firth of Forth to the ancient Kingdom of Fife and St. Andrews. This famous golf course is renowned for its 18th hole and 700-year-old Swilcan Bridge. We continue our journey into the dramatic Scottish Highlands, where we’ll Dive Into Culture at a whisky distillery and sample a wee dram. Visit picture-perfect Pitlochry, on the edge of the Ben-Y-Vrackie and Cairngorms National Park, before arriving at your hotel in the Scottish Highlands where you’ll dine tonight. Overnight stay at the Highlander Hotel.
**Optional available on Day 4: Pitlochry. Visit Of Blair Castle – Set in its own grounds against a backdrop of glorious scenery, we’ll discover the ancient home of the Dukes of Atholl, home to Europe’s last remaining private army. Unique amongst Scottish castles, Blair has hosted royalty from Mary Queen of Scots to Queen Victoria. Adult Price: £20.00*
**Optional available on Day 4: Highland Farm Experience – Visit a real Highland sheep farm and meet Neil the Shepherd and his border collies. He’ll show you how he uses different whistles to command each dog to carry out different tasks. You’ll also try your hand at feeding the lambs and discover his training techniques. Weather permitting. Adult Price: £15.00*
Day 5 – Onwards to Loch Lomond and Glasgow’s Rich Legacy
Enjoy breakfast then travel to the Scottish Highlands which provides a stunning backdrop for today’s leisurely drive to Glasgow. View the World War II Commando Memorial at Spean Bridge and admire views of Britain’s highest mountain – Ben Nevis. See Glencoe, the site of a massacre in 1692 following the Jacobite Uprising, and travel to the ‘bonnie’ banks of Scotland’s prettiest loch, Loch Lomond. We arrive in Glasgow this afternoon visiting St. Mungo’s Cathedral and George Square, lined with statues and monuments dedicated to famous British subjects, including Robert Burns and Sir Robert Peel. Stay the night in the Hotel Novotel
** Optional available on Day 5: A Stirling Evening – See Stirling Castle and the Wallace Memorial by night. A truly local experience, you’ll be piped in to your evening meal in the historic Scottish city and enjoy an evening of Scottish delights. Adult Price: £44.00*
**Optional available on Day 5: Loch Lomond Boat Trip – Discover the wild beauty of the ‘Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond’. As we cruise across the loch, the skipper will share stories of the area and point out Rob Roy’s cave as you relax and savor the stunning scenery. Adult Price: £15.00*
Day 6 – Explore the Lake District and Journey to Liverpool
Following breakfast, your first stop is the runaway wedding capital, Gretna Green where eloping couples make their vows over the Marriage Anvil. Returning to England, we connect with locals, joining farmer John and his wife Christine for lunch at a “Be My Guest” experience in the company of Highland cows. See beautiful Lake District landscapes and skirt the romantic shores of Lake Windermere, the largest lake, arriving in edgy Liverpool of ‘Fab Four’ fame for an evening at leisure. Stay the night at the Mercure Atlantic Tower Hotel
**Optional available on Day 6: Famous Sights and the Fab Four – Come along with our Local Specialist for a guided tour of Liverpool. From its glorious maritime past to its famous cultural present, you’ll discover the two magnificently different cathedrals, see Mathew Street, birthplace of The Beatles, and admire the Mersey Sound. Adult Price: £19.00*
Day 7 – Through the Beautiful Welsh Countryside to Discover Bristol
Breakfast will be enjoyed with your fellow travelers then you all will traverse the pretty Welsh countryside this morning and stop in an area of outstanding natural beauty – the Wye Valley, with its characteristic limestone gorge scenery and dense woodlands. Visit the Shropshire market town of Ludlow with some time to explore on your own before arriving in Bristol to see the Clifton Suspension Bridge and SS Great Britain, the world’s first ocean-going luxury liner. As the curtain comes down on a memorable journey through England and Scotland, we enjoy a Farewell Dinner in a local restaurant with our Travel Director and newfound friends. Spend the night in the Mercure Holland House.
**Optional available on Day 7: Guided Tour of Bristol – The center of the British aeronautics industry since WWII, Bristol was also a great seafaring port and England’s second city. There’s a wealth of history to be discovered and John Cabot, Brunel, the Plimsoll Line, John and Charles Wesley, Wills Tobacco, Archibald Leach (who’s he?), Banksy, and Robinson Crusoe are all names that have unique links with Bristol. Find out how they all fit together on a rip-roaring tour of the town with Bristol’s number-one Local Specialist. Adult Price: £15.00*
Day 8 – Soak up Bath and Stonehenge then off to London
After breakfast you will return to London, where we’ll visit the UNESCO-listed city of Bath to admire its elegant Georgian façades and the Roman Baths from which the city takes its name. Emerging from the Salisbury Plain, the imposing monoliths of Stonehenge are our final stop before continuing through the lush Wiltshire and Hampshire landscapes to London, where our amazing holiday comes to an end. After enjoying the day, you’ll fly out of London back to your home state.
Let TravelKatz know if this is a vacation you have in mind. We can customize this vacation to fit your schedule. Please call 352-277-7300 for more information.