Multi-Day Tour | Private

An English Exploration (15 days)

Dream Escape - United Kingdom

Manchester, United Kingdom To London, United Kingdom

Valid for Departures Now Through: 02 Mar 2019

Itinerary

DAY LOCATION(S) HOTEL MEALS DESCRIPTION
Day 1
Manchester, United Kingdom
Gilpin Lodge Breakfast

Day One: Arrival in England

On arrival at Manchester Airport, you will be met and welcomed by your qualified driver-guide who will provide a safe and comfortable journey to your first accommodation.

The hotel is intimate in size with no more than 20 individually designed rooms, offering an idyllic setting with a relaxed and unhurried atmosphere. Enjoy a garden suite complete with a private garden and cedarwood hot tub.

Spend the remainder of the day at leisure, resting and relaxing following your international flight.

Day 2
Windermere, United Kingdom
Gilpin Lodge Breakfast

Days two and Three: The Lakes

Accompanied by your driver-guide spend 2 days exploring the Lake District. It is considered by many to be amongst the most picturesque area in all of England. Renowned English poet William Wordsworth said of the Lake District that there is 'nowhere in so narrow a compass with such a variety of the sublime and beautiful'

Home to both England's highest mountain and its largest lake, the Lake District shows no shortage of serene countryside to be explored. Perhaps take a wander by the water or climb to the peaks of towering mountains and craggy hilltops to be rewarded with breath-taking panoramas.

Follow in the footsteps of literary greats with visits to charming towns and historic homes, all of which boast impressive literary connections. Visit Hill Top Cottage to see where Beatrix Potter penned many of her famous works, or visit Dove cottage which is now a quaint museum packed full of memorabilia linked to William Wordsworth, its former resident.

Day 3
Windermere, United Kingdom
Gilpin Lodge Breakfast

Days two and Three: The Lakes

Accompanied by your driver-guide spend 2 days exploring the Lake District. It is considered by many to be amongst the most picturesque area in all of England. Renowned English poet William Wordsworth said of the Lake District that there is 'nowhere in so narrow a compass with such a variety of the sublime and beautiful'

Home to both England's highest mountain and its largest lake, the Lake District shows no shortage of serene countryside to be explored. Perhaps take a wander by the water or climb to the peaks of towering mountains and craggy hilltops to be rewarded with breath-taking panoramas.

Follow in the footsteps of literary greats with visits to charming towns and historic homes, all of which boast impressive literary connections. Visit Hill Top Cottage to see where Beatrix Potter penned many of her famous works, or visit Dove cottage which is now a quaint museum packed full of memorabilia linked to William Wordsworth, its former resident.

Day 4
Upper Slaughter, United Kingdom
The Slaughters Manor House Breakfast

Day Four: Travel to The Cotswolds

Relax in first class seats as you travel south to Birmingham. A Local driver-guide will be awaiting your arrival and will take you to your second accommodation.

The property is located in the village of Lower Slaughter, regarded by many as the most beautiful village in England. the pretty River Eye, crossed by two small stone foot bridges and a small road bridge, bisects the village and flows gently by the imposing entrance.

Known as 'Queen of the Cotswolds' and a member of the renowned Relais and chateaux collection, your accommodation is without a doubt one of the finest 17th century manor houses in the country. It is designed to enhance the original features of the Manor with part of the original chapel retaining a large open stone fireplace.

Day 5
Oxford, United Kingdom
The Slaughters Manor House Breakfast

Day Five: Men and Mystery of World War

The Day begins with a private guided tour of Blenheim Palace, one of Britain's finest stately homes. The House itself is a masterpiece of English baroque architecture. The superb gardens were landscaped by Capability Brown, perhaps Britain's greatest landscape gardener. It's a small wonder the UNESCO declared it a World Heritage Site in 1987.

The Palace was the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill and his final resting place can be found at St Martin's, Bladon, just outside Blenheim Palace grounds.

This afternoon travel to the unassuming town of Bletchley. Until recently Bletchley Park was Britain's best kept secret but during World War II was of vital importance to national security and the Allies' ultimate victory.

Bletchley Park heralded the birth of the information age with the industrialisation of the codebreaking processes enabled by machines such as the Turing/Welchman Bombe, and the world's first electronic computer, Colossus. Today, Bletchley Park is a treasured heritage site designed to preserve the important story of the Codebreakers during World War II, and a truly fascinating visit.

Day 6
Oxford, United Kingdom
The Slaughters Manor House Breakfast

Day Six: The Cotswolds

Spend the day exploring the Cotswolds with your driver-guide. Glorious all year round, the Cotswolds are the largest of all the 38 Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty in England and Wales. It is best known for representing quintessential England: rolling hillsides, country lanes and stone villages.

Perhaps the key to the Cotswolds’ irresistible and characteristic pull lies in the limestone bedrock from which so many of its towns and villages are built. It is this golden stone attributed from medieval wealth from wool merchants that makes the area equally as beautiful on an overcast afternoon or a sunny morning.

Chipping Campden was described by English historian, G.M. Trevelyan as ‘the most beautiful village street now left on the island’. The main street, leading past the historic market place, curves in a shallow arc, lined with a succession of ancient houses each grafted to the next but each with its own distinctive embellishments.

Referred to as the ‘Jewel of the Cotswolds’, the nearby village of Broadway derives its name from its wide main street lined with chestnut trees and typical Cotswold houses. You may stop in Burford where the High Street sweeps down the hill to the River Windrush; Bourton-on-the-Water that boasts a series of charming little bridges over the water; and Stow-on-the-Wold that has quaint stores and antiques shops.

The village of Bibury, described as the loveliest in England by William Morris, was originally two villages on either side of the Rack Isle in the River Coln. It has some charming vernacular architecture including the iconic Arlington Row. Just a short drive from your accommodation is the village of Bourton-on-the-Water. It is affectionately called ‘Little Venice’ due to the series of graceful low bridges that straddle the river.

Day 7
Oxford, United Kingdom
The Slaughters Manor House Breakfast

Day Seven: Oxford

Oxford has been a home to royalty and scholars for over 800 years, and is famous for its prestigious university. The grouping of towers and spires, have provided the city the moniker ‘the city of dreaming spires’ and provide a beautiful sight from a distance.

On closer view, the 38 colleges of Oxford University are a wonderful example of British architecture of every period, ranging from medieval times to the present. One can find most of the university’s handsome buildings in the centre which is easily explored on foot.

Oxford’s libraries have gained worldwide recognition not only for their buildings but also for the large collection of books and manuscripts that are housed within them. The Bodleian Library dates back to 1320. To this day, it is entitled to receive a copy of every book published in Britain.

The reading room, the Radcliffe Camera with its neo-classical rotunda is perhaps one of the city’s most distinctive buildings, while the Medieval Divinity School is this is the oldest teaching and examination room at the University. Its unique vaulted ceiling show is considered to be one of the country’s finest displays of Gothic architecture.

Close by is Broad Street; known locally as ‘The Broad’ it is a must-see cluster of architectural highlights and a site of significant moments in British history, which your driver-guide will regale you with tales of.

Day 8
Tetbury, United Kingdom
The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa Breakfast

Day Eight: Highgrove Gardens

Explore the private gardens of their Royal Highnesses the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall with a very special visit.

A keen gardener himself, His Royal Highness has devoted much energy to transforming the gardens around the house since his arrival in 1980 from a somewhat bleak landscape to one of the most creatively inspired gardens of its time.

Your guided tour, led by one of the gardeners, will explore over two miles of organic and sustainable land including the Meadow and the Walled Kitchen Garden, showcasing HRH, The Prince of Wales’s environmental philosophy: ‘it is better to work with nature than against it’.

Enlighten and delight in the gardens before concluding in the Orchard Room for a Champagne afternoon tea.

Continue to the city of Bath, where you will check into a magnificent property situated on the famous Royal Crescent. The Grade I buildings were first occupied in 1775 and today the public rooms and 45 bedrooms have a wonderful 18th century-style décor, complete with paintings from period artists such as Gainsborough.

Day 9
Bath, United Kingdom
The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa Breakfast

Day Nine: Beautiful Bath

Considered one of Britain’s most beautiful cities, Bath is home to some of nation’s grandest and most graceful architecture. Sweeping crescents of gorgeous Georgian architecture co-exist harmoniously with ancient cobbled alleys and grand Roman Bathhouses, ensuring that almost every corner of the city boasts classical beauty that will stop you in your tracks.

Rich with history ranging from the Romans to Jane Austen, UNESCO added Bath as a cultural site to its World Heritage List in 1987. The city’s long and distinguished history stems almost entirely from the natural hot springs which gush to the surface here.

After their conquest of Britain, the Romans established Aquae Sulis in the green hills of Somerset which today continues under the name of Bath. In the 18th century the Georgians rediscovered the mineral springs, and turned Bath into a fashionable resort where the wealthy would come to seek treatments and relaxation on their vacations.

A private local guide will accompany you as you discover the Roman Baths, renowned as one of the finest historic sites in Northern Europe. Situated alongside a temple dedicated to the healing goddess Sulis-Minerva, inside walk through the baths and explore the museum full of carefully and complete with a filled with ancient artefacts.

Perhaps take a walk along the beautiful Pulteney Bridge to enjoy the scenic view, or climb the 212 steps to the top of the tower of Bath Abbey. Here, you can stand on top of the Abbey’s vaulted ceiling, and even sit behind the clock face. Magnificent stained glass windows and columns of honey-gold create an extraordinary experience of light and space. Once at the top you can take in a spectacular panoramic view of the city.

Day 10
Bath, United Kingdom
Cliveden House Hotel Breakfast

Day Ten: Stonehenge to Berkshire

Meet your qualified local driver-guide in the hotel foyer and travel into Wiltshire. Almost half the county is designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It is made up of young rivers, medieval towns and villages, high plains and extensive rolling downs, all peppered with white horse carvings on the chalk hillsides and topped with old drovers’ roads.

Surrounded by mystery, Stonehenge never fails to impress. The breathtaking prehistoric monument stands as strong today as it did 3,500 years ago. In 1986 Stonehenge was amongst the first seven sites in the UK to be inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Built in several stages from around 3000BC, it is speculated that it took over 30 million hours of labour to construct. To this day its purpose remains a mystery; however the alignment of the awe-inspiring stones suggests that the circle is connected with the sun and the passing of the seasons.

Continue to your penultimate accommodation; it has been a place of politics, power and parties for 300 years. The house has played host to virtually every British monarch since George I and has been home to three Dukes, an Earl and Frederick Prince of Wales, who created a happy family home here until his death in 1751.

Queen Victoria, a frequent guest, was not amused when the house was bought by William Waldorf Astor, America's richest citizen.

When in 1906 he gave it to his son and daughter-in-law Nancy Astor, it became the hub of a hectic social whirl where notable guests included everyone from Charlie Chaplin to Winston Churchill and President Roosevelt. It has been at the heart of British society for centuries.

Day 11
Windsor, United Kingdom
Cliveden House Hotel Breakfast

Day Eleven: Wonderful Windsor

Explore Windsor Castle, a glorious 13-acre complex of medieval, Restoration and Georgian buildings. Highlights to discover during your visit include the spectacular art collection gracing the walls in the State Apartments and St. George’s Chapel, one of the most beautiful ecclesiastical buildings in England and the burial place of 10 monarchs including Henry VIII and King Charles I.

Today, the private apartments are still HM, The Queen’s preferred weekend retreat from the capital and her presence is signified by the Royal Standard flying from the Round Tower.

It’s a pleasant stroll from here across the rover to Eton High Street. Noted for its art and antique shops, this charming thoroughfare also leads to Eton College, the country’s most famous school. Former pupils have includes numerous Prime Ministers, and many members of British Royalty.

To follow, explore Windsor Great Park which is the only Royal Park managed by The Crown Estate. Its official ranger is Prince Philip who is charged with maintaining the park and continuing to increase access for the area’s visitors.

Overlooking the magnificence of Windsor Castle itself, it’s easy to feel the royal history sparking to life around you. This is a landscape that speaks of great kings, hunting parties and an English heritage of jousting, banquets and tournaments. It was once part of a vast Norman hunting forest which was enclosed in the late 13th century. Some remains of these boundary ditches and living fences can still be spotted today by sharp-eyed enthusiasts.

There can be no better way to explore the graceful tree-lined avenues, ancient woodlands and 18th century lakes than with a private horse-drawn carriage ride. Travel at a leisurely pace and enjoy hearing tales of the park’s history from your knowledgeable carriage driver.

Day 12
London, United Kingdom
The Goring Breakfast

Day Twelve: An Introduction to London

With its unique blend of history and culture, the bustling metropolis of London has long been considered a must-see destination. The city is constantly changing, offering a wealth of historic buildings and monuments, as well as an eclectic mix of museums and world famous attractions.

Embark on a fast and fun two-hour orientation tour of the city in two restored Classic Mini Coopers. On this tour, you will see the capital through the eyes of a Londoner. See world famous landmarks such as the Houses of Parliament, St Paul’s Cathedral and The Shard, but also the hidden gems that are so often missed – Street Art in the Leake Street Tunnel, quirky back streets of Covent Garden and local markets.

Check into London’s most quintessentially English hotel. Located in exclusive Belgravia, it was the very last grand hotel of the Edwardian era to be built. Completed in 1910, it is now the oldest privately-owned luxury hotel in London. Each of the 69 individually-designed bedrooms and suites exude English style.

In 2013, it was awarded a Royal Warrant for hospitality services, an incredibly exclusive mark of recognition for those who supply goods of services to the highest ranking member of the British Royal Family.

Day 13
London, United Kingdom
The Goring Breakfast

Day Thirteen: London Highlights – Part 1

The buzz and excitement of London can be enough to overwhelm even the most seasoned traveller! Much like many other capital cities, busy traffic, lengthy queues and bag searches at popular sites can slow down the day, and with so many places to explore, time is truly of the essence. To ensure the most action-packed day possible, it will be pre-planned and pre-purchased.

A local chauffeur will provide two city journeys: one for morning drop off and a second at the end of the day collection. The majority and middle part of the day will be spent on foot and on the river. A local guide will accompany you for the duration ensuring you get the best of the famed city.

The day commences at what is perhaps London’s most famous sight, the Tower of London. This illustrious UNESCO World Heritage Site dates to the early 1080s and has borne witness to many defining events in British history. Many bold characters have been imprisoned here including the explosives expert Guy Fawkes, and the infamous second wife of Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn.

Sit back and relax with a cruise on the River Thames, passing under mighty bridges, and seeing iconic landmarks at each and every bend in the river. Modern glass and steel skyscrapers dazzle from The City, while the recreation of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre offers a glimpse of the area’s rich heritage.

Another of London’s most iconic buildings is Westminster Abbey, a stunning Gothic church which intertwines with the very fabric of English history and has done for more than 1000 years. It has become famous as a burial place of enormous prestige, with 17 monarchs buried here, alongside prime ministers, scientists, writers and other important figures through British history. In 2011, the spectacular wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton was held here.

Day 14
London, United Kingdom
The Goring Breakfast

Day Fourteen: London Highlights – Part II

Once again, to ensure the most action-packed day possible it will be pre-planned and pre-purchased. A local chauffeur will provide two city transfers: one for morning drop off and a second at the end of the day collection. The majority and middle part of the day will be spent on foot and on the river.

A local guide will accompany you for the duration ensuring you get the best of the famed city.

Discover secrets of the Second World War at The Churchill War Rooms. This is where Churchill and his inner circle not only took shelter during the Blitz, but also where master strategies were hatched and top-secret conversations were whispered late into the night, changing the course of history.

It was there, in the underground Cabinet Room, that Churchill announced 'This is the room from which I will direct the war'.

View the city from a new perspective as you board a capsule on the London Eye. It stands a towering 135 metres high and offers a spectacular way to take in many of the city’s most famous landmarks in just 30 minutes providing the perfect farewell to the capital.

Day 15
London, United Kingdom
None Breakfast

Day Fifteen: Homeward Bound

Your Chauffeur guide will accompany you to London Heathrow Airport where you will board your flight for onward travel

End of Services

Tour Features

Experience(s)

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Description

This chauffeur-driven tour provides the opportunity to experience the best England has to offerfrom the breath-taking beauty of the Lake District and the charm of the Cotswolds, to the culture and history of London.

Impeccable accommodation, world-class dining, knowledgeable guides and exclusive experiences including private tours of royal residences combine to create an unforgettable showcase of England

About Us

Dream Escape is your Virtuoso on-site providing the ultimate luxury tailor-made travel service in England, Scotland & Ireland, specializing in the following experiences: Private boxes at events including the Edinburgh Royal Military Tattoo; Country pursuits and golf with access to private clubs and estates; Equestrian - Stud visits, polo and racing; Whisky Experiences. Private distillery visits and tastings; Exclusive Villa Collection; Incentive and board meetings; Private Castle stays; Celebrations and Events; Bespoke City breaks in London, Edinburgh & Dublin, ; Shorex; Chauffeur guided touring; 'Set Jetting.'

Insider Tip

Our in-house Head of Guiding, Rosie Peattie, is the Mary Poppins of guiding. She knows everything and everyone and adds extraordinary vibrancy to each programme she accompanies!

Terms & Conditions

Click here to view our terms and conditions.



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Reviews and Recommendations for Dream Escape - United Kingdom

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Perfect Itinerary

By: Jordan D


Reviewed on: 12 Sep 2016

Dream Escape put together a wonderful array of activities, lodgings, and restaurants for us to enjoy on our first trip to Scotland. Not being familiar with the lay of the land, it was nice to have expert help in ensuring we experienced a great deal of the pleasures the country has to offer. We would highly recommend using them for your next trip.
Travel Advisor:  Susan Sparks
Not Recommended

Edinburgh

By: Struie


Reviewed on: 23 Sep 2017

We had a very poor experience with Dream Escapes - numerous issues continued to plague our trip - one thing going wrong can be overlooked but their were many issues that greatly affected our ability to enjoy our trip.

Scotland Ireland

By: lola


Reviewed on: 01 Oct 2017

We had a terrific experience but our van in Scotland could have been better..
Travel Advisor:  Michael Distler

Excellent Escape

By: Lisa


Reviewed on: 28 May 2018

We really appreciated the detailed plan they gave us, the attention to the details of what we wished to do and see, and their choices for accommodations that were outstanding, a driver for our 12 days that was wonderful, and well informed guides along the way. It was truly a dream escape in all ways.
Travel Advisor:  Dottie DeSisto