British Royale

British Royale (Summer 2019)

Duration: 9 days Visiting: England, Scotland

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Uncover the very essence of Britain, as we introduce you to knowledgeable experts and passionate locals who will bring stories from the past and present to life. Meet iconic personalities, such as a Royal Horse Guard in London and a bagpiper in Edinburgh, and go to significant destinations that were once frequented by the likes of Shakespeare and notorious kings. As you travel in elegant style, stay at the most sought-after addresses in Britain, dine at a Michelin-starred restaurant and savour local specialities, such as English cream scones served in a dramatic Scottish dining hall. Enjoy a selection of exclusive VIP Experiences, including a private visit to RHS Garden Harlow Carr and the Tower of London for a viewing of the Ceremony of the Keys. From the beautiful Georgian city of Bath to the mesmerising Lake District, this is a journey of a lifetime.

  1. Day 1

    Welcome to London.

    Your complimentary, private transfer takes you to your local departure airport.

    Meet your personal chauffeur on arrival at London Heathrow Airport and enjoy an escorted drive in a chic Mercedes Benz to the award-winning Milestone Hotel, an exquisite five-star hotel overlooking Kensington Palace and Gardens. A member of The Leading Hotels of the World, the Milestone Hotel is yours to explore, as you spend the day at leisure. Perhaps enjoy the most quintessential of English rituals, afternoon tea, hosted at the Milestone Hotel? At 18:00 meet your Travelling Concierge and travel companions for a grand Welcome Dinner hosted at Cheneston's Restaurant in your hotel. Savour classic British cuisine and take in the old-world ambience of your Victorian-styled surroundings.

  2. Day 2 - Relaxed Start

    Traditions and Treasures of London.

    A modern-day hub of culture and commerce, and once the centre of an empire, London is no doubt one of the world’s greatest cities, teeming with millions of stories. Your Travelling Concierge will introduce you to a Local Expert – a passionate resident who will share fascinating stories about the city, as you explore the city to see Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey. You will then continue past Downing Street, Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus. At the Household Cavalry Museum, uncover the secret messages hidden within a cavalryman's uniform and try on the royal uniform for yourself. Meet a serving Royal Horse Guard at the Horse Guards Parade and discover what it takes to be part of HM The Queen's Mounted Bodyguard. Stop at Buckingham Palace to witness the colourful Changing of the Guard ceremony, when available. Spend the afternoon shopping at Harrods, listening to the soapbox orators of Speaker’s Corner or viewing the masterpieces in the National Gallery. Enjoy dinner as you please. Should you want to venture beyond your hotel, ask your knowledgeable Travelling Concierge for restaurant recommendations. In the evening, once the crowds have gone home, experience a private tour with a serving Yeoman Warder. After being greeted you will be lead through the grounds, with stops made through the quarters, including at the chapel, place of beheading and prison towers where the Yeoman Warder explains the history and importance of each place. You will then learn about the Ceremony of the Keys, carried out every night by the Beefeaters, without fail, for the past 700 years. The Yeoman Warder provides a history of the tradition and explains the etiquette of handling the keys before you are privy to witnessing this ancient gate-closing ritual.

  3. Day 3

    Windsor Castle, Stonehenge and Georgian Bath.

    Windsor Castle, famous for its long-standing association with the British Royal family, dates back to the 11th century and is a spectacle of period architecture, manicured gardens and rich history. Visit the grounds with a Local Expert before you are then at leisure to explore the castle at your own pace, discovering the secrets that this royal residence has been keeping for over 900 years. Perhaps wander through the enfilade of suites in the State Apartments and marvel at the phenomenal Queen Mary’s Doll’s House or admire the endless armour collection in the Grand Vestibule. Your journey then continues to visit mysterious Stonehenge, a prehistoric UNESCO World Heritage burial site. You'll then move on to the Georgian city of Bath where people have been indulging in the healing waters for millennia. Enjoy a spectacular Highlight Dinner at a Michelin-star rated restaurant. With each Michelin-starred restaurant around the world meticulously selected based on outstanding food quality, you are in for an unrivalled indulgence.

  4. Day 4

    Cotswolds, Stratford-upon-Avon and York.

    Visit the original Roman Baths and Georgian Pump Room, one of the greatest religious spas of the ancient world, and imagine how Romans once gathered to relish the good life. Continue your journey through the Cotswolds which is among the most unspoiled regions of England, famous for gentle rolling hillsides known as ‘wolds’, green river valleys and historic market towns, where time has stood still for over 300 years. Stop in picture-perfect Bibury, described by the esteemed William Morris as the ‘prettiest village in the Cotswolds.’ Head to Burford nestled on the meandering River Windrush. Its high street is an eye-pleasing mix of honey-coloured stone, chocolate-box cottages and Tudor buildings. After browsing the tea houses and quaint shops, a leisurely drive brings you to the sleepy limestone villages of Bourton-on-the-Water and Stow-on-the-Wold, two of the most picturesque towns of the northern Cotswolds. Arrive in Stratford-upon-Avon, the birthplace of Shakespeare, and continue on to York.

  5. Day 5 - Relaxed Start

    Medieval Wonders of York.

    Step back in time as you meet the lively characters and explore the medieval streets of York. Once an important centre of Roman occupation in England, this is a storybook city surrounded by a large stone wall dating back to the 13th century. Experience York Your Way with a choice of two outstanding experiences today. Either join a Local Expert for a pulse-raising walk on the famous city walls - the longest medieval walls in England - and appreciate spectacular views of the river and the Old Town. Alternatively, embark on a leisurely guided tour to the York Minster, the largest medieval cathedral in northern Europe and one of the most outstanding Gothic buildings in the world. Spend free time this afternoon exploring York’s many hidden gems. At sunset, join a senior gardener for a VIP, after-hours visit to the RHS Garden Harlow Carr, a prestigious member of the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS). In the same league as the iconic RHS Chelsea Flower Show, RHS Garden Harlow Carr boasts a wide variety of indigenous plants. Uncover the many hidden gems of the garden, before picking up a picnic bag to enjoy at your leisure on one of the garden's secluded benches. After a wander through the 57-acre garden, enjoy strawberries and cream and a refreshing, traditional Pimm’s cocktail.

  6. Day 6 - Relaxed Start

    The Wild and Poetic Lake District.

    The rugged and dramatic beauty of the English Lake District famously inspired 19th century writers such as Beatrix Potter and William Wordsworth. Experience the charms of a bygone era, as you step onboard a historic steam train at the Lakeside & Haverthwaite Railway Station for a short ride along the southern banks of the lake. Wonder at views of soaring mountain ranges, mystical forests and emerald-green waters, as you journey past vast Windermere to reach your hotel. Disembark to explore the lakeside town of Bowness-on-Windermere. In the evening dinner is served at a charming restaurant, Bistro at The Lakes Distillery, located on the picturesque Bassenthwaite Lake.

  7. Day 7 - Relaxed Start

    Alnwick Castle.

    Journey to majestic Alnwick Castle and explore its magnificent interiors. Join a Local Expert for an in-depth exploration of the 11th Castle, with its striking medieval architecture and see why it was featured in the Harry Potter films. Travel up to the beautiful Scottish capital of Edinburgh where you have an evening to enjoy at your leisure. Your Travelling Concierge is a treasure-trove of knowledge and will happily guide you to the best local restaurants and attractions.

    Chairman's Collection

    If you are travelling on a Chairman's Collection departure, you will meet Her Grace The Duchess of Northumberland as she personally welcomes you for a private tour of her beloved garden. You are also introduced to the Head Gardener, Trevor Jones, who will lead you past a labyrinth, the serpent garden and ornate fountains, as you listen to the fascinating story of how The Duchess restored this exquisite garden to its former 18th century glory over the last twenty years. Admire this masterpiece of passion and dedication, which remains a work in progress, before indulging in a seasonal lunch. Join a Local Expert for an in-depth exploration of the 11th Castle, with its striking medieval architecture and see why it was featured in the Harry Potter films. Your travels continue to the beautiful Scottish capital of Edinburgh where you have an evening to enjoy at your leisure. Your Travelling Concierge is a treasure-trove of knowledge and will happily guide you to the best local restaurants and attractions. During August, you’re invited to witness The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, one of the most spectacular military events on earth and a celebration of the history, heritage and colours of Scotland’s regiments both near and far. Hosted every August, this renowned international showcase of military pageantry boasts performers from forty-eight countries. Enjoy the sounds and sights of bagpipes rising, drums cracking through the night air and performers dressed in tunics, kilts and tartans with Edinburgh Castle, lit up in colour, providing a dramatic backdrop.

  8. Day 8 - Relaxed Start

    Highlights of Beautiful Edinburgh.

    Enjoy a visit to magnificent Edinburgh Castle, the country’s most visited landmark. Skip the queue and join a Local Expert for a guided exploration of the castle grounds. Learn about the castle’s tumultuous history, see its Crown Jewels and Stone of Destiny, and appreciate panoramic views of the city below. Travel along Princes Street, past the Gothic Sir Walter Scott Monument, and continue down the Royal Mile to the gates of the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the principal residence of Scottish royalty since the 16th century. In true Gaelic style, meet a professional bagpiper, who is said to have been the Queen Mother’s favourite, and be enchanted as you listen to iconic music and fascinating tales about Scottish culture, whilst enjoying tea and scones. Raise a glass this evening to new friendships and a memorable journey, as we celebrate our finale dinner at one of the city’s very best restaurants, Galvin Brasserie de Luxe.

  9. Day 9

    Farewell Edinburgh.

    Bid farewell to your travel companions and continue your onward journey with transfers timed to meet your flight. On arrival at your home airport, your driver will greet and escort you to your waiting car for your private transfer home.

Highlights

 

VIP EXPERIENCES

  • London: You’re invited to the Tower of London to experience the exclusive Ceremony of the Keys. This ancient gate-closing ritual has been carried out every night by the Beefeaters, without fail, for the last 700 years.
  • London: Visit the Horse Guards Parade and learn about the importance of a cavalryman's uniform as you wander through the Household Cavalry Museum. You will also meet a serving Royal Horse Guard and hear what is required of HM The Queen's Mounted Bodyguard.
  • York: Gain after-hours, VIP entry to the majestic RHS Garden Harlow Carr, a member of the Royal Horticultural Society. Join a senior gardener to learn about indigenous plant species, before enjoying an exclusive twilight picnic.

JOURNEY HIGHLIGHTS

  • London: Meet a passionate resident, your Local Expert, who will share the city’s fascinating history, as you see Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey.
  • London: See British pageantry at its best, as you witness the Changing of the Guard ceremony at Buckingham Palace, when available. It’s a great privilege guarding the Sovereign and a quintessential British tradition that dates back to 1660.
  • London: Experience the Tower of London with a private tour led by a serving Yeoman Warder. See the quarters, chapel, place of beheading and prison towers where the Yeoman Warder explains the history and importance of each place.
  • Windsor Castle: Broadcast to the world to celebrate Prince Harry and the Duchess of Sussex's wedding, Windsor Castle is where your Local Expert shows you the castle precincts and introduces you to 1,000 years of history and its role today as an official residence of The Queen.
  • Windsor Castle: Make the most of your visit and search for the treasures and secrets that this royal residence has been keeping for over 900 years as you explore the grounds at your own pace. Perhaps wander through the enfilade of suites in the State Apartments, marvel at the phenomenal Queen Mary’s Doll’s House or admire the endless armour collection in the Grand Vestibule.
  • Stonehenge: Visit the mysterious circle of upright stones, which stand as strong today as they did 3,500 years ago.
  • Bath: The City of Bath is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, built atop of Britain's only natural mineral springs. Visit the Roman Baths and Pump Room, built by the Romans over 2,000-years-ago as a place to wash and socialise.
  • Bath: During an orientation you will see the Royal Crescent, Pulteney Bridge and Bath Abbey.
  • Cotswolds: Journey through the Cotswolds which is among the most quintessential and unspoiled regions of England, famous for gentle, rolling hillsides known as ‘wolds’, green river valleys and historic market towns, where time has stood still for over 300 years. Admire the quaint towns of Bibury, Burford, Bourton-on-the-Water and Stow-on-the-Wold.
  • Stratford-upon-Avon: Venture inside the timber-framed building where the Bard of Avon, William Shakespeare, was born and grew up.
  • York: Appreciate the beauty of York Your Way, as you either join a Local Expert for an exploration of the city walls, or embark on a leisurely guided tour of York Minster.
  • Windermere: Enjoy a nostalgic ride on a historic steam train along the banks of Windermere.
  • Bowness-on-Windermere: Led by your Travelling Concierge, enjoy the chance to explore this lakeside town.
  • Alnwick: Explore majestic Alnwick Castle, steeped in history.
  • Edinburgh: Visit magnificent Edinburgh Castle, Scotland’s most-visited tourist attraction. Join a Local Expert, who will share tales about the castle’s tumultuous past and show you the Crown Jewels and Stone of Destiny.
  • Edinburgh: In true Gaelic style, meet a fabulously entertaining bagpiper and be enchanted as you listen to iconic music and fascinating tales about Scottish culture.
  • Edinburgh: With a Local Expert, wander along Princes Street, past the Gothic Sir Walter Scott Monument, and continue down the Royal Mile to the gates of Holyrood Palace, the principal residence of Scottish royalty since the 16th century.

EXCEPTIONAL DINING

  • London: Enjoy a glamorous Welcome Dinner at one of London’s finest addresses, The Milestone Hotel. Surrounded by rich mahogany furniture and traditional decor, you’ll savour delicious seasonal flavours and wines recommended by a dedicated sommelier as you dine in the Victorian-styled Cheneston's Restaurant.
  • Bath: Experience an exquisite Highlight Dinner at a Michelin-starred restaurant in the heart of the British countryside.
  • York: Pick up a picnic bag and find a secluded bench to enjoy your meal complete with strawberries and cream and a traditional Pimm's cocktail.
  • English Lake District: Located on the picturesque Bassenthwaite Lake, enjoy a drink with dinner at the Bistro at The Lakes Distillery.
  • Edinburgh: Regale in Scottish tea and scones in one of Edinburgh's traditional ceilidh ballroom.
  • Edinburgh: Be treated to a delightful meal, accompanied with drinks, as you toast to fond memories and new friends during your finale dinner hosted at Galvin Brasserie de Luxe, one of the city's best restaurants.
  • Dining Summary: 8 Breakfasts (B), 1 Morning Tea (MT) and 5 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.

    Chairman's Collection Departures: 8 Breakfasts (B), 1 Morning Tea (MT), 1 Lunch with Wine (LW) and 5 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.

LUXURY HOTELS

  • London: Located opposite Kensington Palace and Gardens, the award-winning Milestone Hotel embodies old-world charm with its rich mahogany furnishings and timeless British style. Voted the number one hotel in London at the Best Loved Hotel Awards 2016 and number one for customer service at the Best Loved Hotel Awards 2017, the five-star Milestone Hotel offers traditional dining, 24-hour butler service, with two staff members to every guest, and sumptuous comforts.
  • Bath: Located in the historic heart of Bath, the elegant Francis Hotel is set in an 18th century townhouse overlooking leafy Queen Square. It houses an impressive art collection and offers luxurious accommodation complete with a tea room, lounges and bars.
  • York: Housed in the iconic former headquarters of the prestigious North Eastern Railway Company, the five-star Grand Hotel & Spa places you minutes away from museums, shops and the River Ouse. It boasts elegant guest bedrooms, a restaurant and bar, and a luxury spa uniquely situated in underground vaults.
  • English Lake District: Set in the heart of the spectacular English Lake District, Leeming House is a short walk away from the shores of Ullswater. Its lounges and elegant guest bedrooms offer superb views of the lake.
  • Edinburgh: Considered one of the best places to stay in Edinburgh, The Glasshouse is a five-star boutique hotel situated in the historic heart of the city. With beautifully appointed guest suites and fine seasonal dining, the hotel’s expansive roof garden is what sets it apart.

INCLUSIVE LUXURY GOLD SERVICES

  • You will be escorted by one of our fine Travelling Concierges, handpicked to serve as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Luxury Gold's air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom, onboard restroom and and complimentary bottled water for you to enjoy while travelling.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary, available on departures with 15 or more guests.
  • At every hotel, you'll be treated to seamless baggage handling, with prompt delivery inside your room.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available, does not apply to Halong Bay Cruise).
  • From time to time, your Travelling Concierge will enchant you with a Luxury Gold Flourish, which is a local speciality representing the destination.
  • Complimentary, private airport transfers are included on start and end dates and when additional accommodation has been booked through Luxury Gold. Complimentary, private train station transfers are included when train travel is included within the itinerary. Transfers to train stations or alternate hotels, in the same start or end city of the itinerary, may be requested but are not guaranteed.

Accommodation

 

Milestone Hotel, London.

London (Historic) - England

Located opposite Kensington Palace and Gardens, the award-winning Milestone Hotel embodies old-world charm with its rich mahogany furnishings and timeless British style. Voted the number one hotel in London at the Best Loved Hotel Awards 2016, the five-star Milestone offers traditional dining, 24-hour butler service with two staff members to every guest and sumptuous comforts.

Francis Hotel Bath

Bath (Heritage) - England

Located in the historic heart of Bath, the elegant Francis Hotel is set in an 18th century townhouse overlooking leafy Queen Square. It houses an impressive art collection and offers luxurious accommodation complete with a tea room, lounges and bars.

The Grand Hotel & Spa

York (Historic) - England

Housed in the iconic former headquarters of the prestigious North Eastern Railway Company, the five-star Grand Hotel & Spa places you minutes away from museums, shops and the River Ouse. It boasts elegant guest bedrooms, a restaurant and bar, and a luxury spa uniquely situated in underground vaults.

Leeming House, Ullswater, English Lake District.

English Lake Distrct (Traditional) - England

Set in the heart of the spectacular English Lake District, Leeming House is a short walk away from the shores of Ullswater. Its lounges and elegant guest bedrooms offer superb views of the lake.

The Glasshouse Hotel

Edinburgh (Historic) - Scotland

Considered one of the best places to stay in Edinburgh, The Glasshouse is a five-star boutique hotel situated in the historic heart of the city. With beautifully- appointed guest suites and fine seasonal dining, the hotel’s expansive roof garden is what sets it apart.

Guest Reviews & Experiences

Our guests rate us 4.4 out of 5 based on
1026 independent user reviews received during the past year.

  • 15 October, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: VIP tour events were excellent. A bit too much time on the bus.

    Service: Our traveling concierge was very good. The Milestone Hotel was a wonderful choice. The VIP activities were great.

  • 13 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Fabulous experiences throughout the tour facilitated brilliantly by John our tour guide

    Service: Execellent experiences

  • 29 September, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Good overview of England.

    Service: Transportation from the airport was first rate, to the airport not so much. Milestone and Grand Hotel were excellent, Francis Hotel in Bath only a 2 star. Macdonald Leeming and Glasshouse would rate 4 stars. Excellent tour of Alnwick Garden and Castle. Meeting the Duchess of Northumberland was a highlight of the tour since she spent a hour with us sharing information about the garden.The local expert at the Tower of London was excellent. All other local experts were just okay. The bus driver, Albert, was skillful, and outstanding as a driver. I believe the pace of the tour could be adjusted to be more balanced between late nights and early mornings. Several days we has a very late night and a very early morning. Also, for popular tours like the Windsor Castle, tickets should be purchased early to avoid standing in long lines. We stood in line for over an hour, too long for some seniors on the tour. Scheduling a little more free shopping time would also be a positive. All in all, I enjoyed the trip greatly, but was exhausted when it ended. Yes, I would recommend this tour to others.

  • 29 September, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Late dinners, early departures. Maybe plan late lunches to allow more free time at dinner since we had many early departures.

    Service: Great customer service. John and Arthur were so much fun to travel with.

  • 27 August, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Good pace - lots to see and do daily.

    Service: It was a fantastic trip, we saw lots everyday at the right pace. British Royale covered the best that Britain has to offer! Loved the Lakes District and Edinburgh as highlights and meeting the Duchess of Northumberland on the Chairman's Collection departure.

  • 26 August, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Pace was a bit too fast leaving out a chance to savior a few locations.

    Service: Overall, our host, Michelle Worthington did a fantastic job for our tour so I have nothing but complements for her. Our hotels were a bit problematic - each one, except the Millstone in London, had some negative issue so I was not impressed with any of them. As with other Luxury Gold tours, the pace is a bit fast which does not leave much time for a traveler to enjoy or savor the character of a location. I appreciate wanting to include all sights but, there are places that deserve a leisurely visit. I think that it is misleading to include the required travel day as day 1. This day is NOT part of the tour and yet it is counted as a included day. Our tour was NOT 10 days long, it was 9 days long.

  • 26 August, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: All tours and "extras" met our expectations and in some cases way above.

    Service: Personalized service and close attention to detail made our trip an excellent experience.

  • 26 August, 2018

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    Trip: Day after day brought new experiences which would have been nearly impossible to duplicate on our own. Loved the steam train ride, the boat ride, the return train trip from Edinburgh to London, the guided tour of the Alnswick gardens with the duchess and her head gardener, etc., etc.

    Service: Michelle was the best concierge/director we've had in our nine Insight tours. I've never seen anybody work as hard to make things run smoothly in spite of this tour being a first time undertaking. The staff at all the hotels were outstanding - helpful, personable, and truly interested in making our stays memorable. There were many highlights on the trip that I wouldn't have wanted to miss, including the Duchess guiding us on a tour of her gardens (which were spectacular in themselves) and the Scottish tattoo which was an evening of unexcelled entertainment.

  • 25 August, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Fast paced, but got what we wanted out of the trip.

    Service: Yes, I would buy again. Tour guide was excellent. Most hotels lived up to the ratings. Food was great. Was a face-paced trip, but was needed to see everything we did in 10 days.

  • 25 August, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: We covered a tremendous amount of the country. Each of the sites were magnificent and were well worth the visit. Itinerary was “tight” and rushed though to reach our next destination. It needed more time in the Lake District and time to actually stop in charming towns in the Cotswolds rather than drive through. Perhaps consideration should be given to adding teo more days to the itinerary!

    Service: Our travel host was extremely informative, very helpful, proactive and concerned about the comfort and experience of everyone in the group.

  • 03 June, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Everything great except it took too long to get to Michelin restaurant

    Service: Every thing about the tour was great except: 1. Michilen dinner took to long to get too and most of us did not appreciate the menu. 2. The york minster guide was terrible, kept texting and talking on her phone. Did not talk loud enough. 3. I expected a Luxury tour to provide porters to and from the train. Did not plan on lugging my own suit case.

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