West England & the Jurassic Coast
8 DAYS, 7 NIGHTS | Bath, Glastonbury, Lyme Regis, Salisbury, Stonehenge & Highclere
PRIVATE TOUR ITINERARY
Enjoy this private tour of the West of England and the spectacular Jurassic Coast with your very own driver-guide, all the while staying in luxury country house hotels. You’ll visit the elegant Georgian Bath, made famous by the Romans and Jane Austen, visit Glastonbury. See the Cheddar Gorge caves, where Britain's oldest complete human skeleton, Cheddar Man, estimated to be 9,000 years old, was found in 1903. Visit Glastonbury, Salisbury, and pre-historic Stonehenge and the pretty seaside village of Lyme Regis. Visit majestic Highclere, also known as Downton Abbey. Enjoy this 8-day private tour with your own driver!
Day 1) Depart London
Depart London Heathrow Airport, or central London, with your driver-guide for the immaculately preserved village of Lacock, favorite of film producers and settings of Downton Abbey and Pride and Prejudice. Explore the picturesque streets and historic cottages untouched by modern times, including the fine Romanesque Cloisters, film site for Harry Potter, and Chapter House of Lacock Abbey. Continue your journey to Bath for a three-night stay in the heart of the city, a short stroll from the Royal Crescent.
Day 2) Bath & Castle Combe
Today, enjoy a private-guided tour of Bath taking in all the main sights including the many places associated with Jane Austen’s time and life in this fine city. You will see Bath from the best viewpoint, tour the Georgian town and visit the well-preserved thermae of the Roma Baths, constructed in 70 AD. Afterwards, enjoy afternoon tea in the elegant interiors of the Pump Room, built between 1789-1799 and setting of Jane Austen’s Persuasion and Northanger Abbey. This evening, visit the picturesque village of Castle Combe, setting of the movie War Horse. Arrive in time to explore the village. Dinner is included this evening at a local inn.
Day 3) Glastonbury & Cheddar Gorge
This morning, meet your local guide and depart for Glastonbury, rich in myth and folklore. Visit Glastonbury Abbey and explore some of the myths and folklore which Glastonbury has become known for. Climb the hill to the Glastonbury Tor where you will be rewarded with panoramic views. Continue to Cheddar where you will visit a small Cheddar Cheese factory. Cheddar Cheese was originally created in Cheddar and was a popular cheese for our Kings and Queens and now one of the most popular cheeses in the world. Visit the factory’s small Visitor Centre where you can see how the world’s most popular cheese is made. During your visit, you will sample different varieties of authentic Cheddar Cheese, including one which is matured in local caves.You will drive through the spectacular Cheddar Gorge, England’s largest gorge. The drive through the gorge has been named as the most scenic drives in Britain. Return to Bath.
Day 4) Stourhead & Montacute House
Depart Bath for Stourhead, one of the first grand Palladian-style villas to be built in England, and Montacute House, a fine Elizabethan manor with landscaped gardens. The world-famous landscape garden of Stourhead, with a lake set among lawns and classical temples, featured in the drama of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, where one of the garden’s temples was used for Mr. Darcy’s first proposal to Elizabeth Bennet. This afternoon, arrive in Lyme Regis, sometimes dubbed the “Pearl of Dorset”, for a two-night stay. Lyme Regis is a historic seaside village nested along the stunning Jurassic Coast.
Day 5) Lyme Regis & Jurassic Coast
Explore Lyme Regis and the Jurassic Coast today, famous for its geology and fossils. The local clay contains the remarkable fossil remains of marine creatures from the Jurassic seas of 180 million years ago. It was on these beaches that one of Lyme’s most famous citizens, Mary Anning (1799-1847), discovered the first complete ichthyosaur, a large extinct reptile, to be found in England; she was just 12 years old at the time. With your own private guide, enjoy your own Fossil Hunting Walk. You will also have an opportunity to choose from numerous walks along the sea cliffs with views to Chesil Beach and the Jurassic Coast, and for visits to the Lyme Regis Museum and Dinosaur Fossil Museum. Enjoy some free time in Lyme Regis.
Day 6) Salisbury & Old Sarum
Depart Lyme Regis for the Cathedral City of Salisbury. You will visit the Cathedral Close and the Cathedral itself. The Cathedral is famous for its rich lore and towering Gothic spire and includes one of four original copies of the Magna Carta, the 1215 document that first established that everyone was subject to the law. At Old Sarum, discover an awe-inspiring Iron Age hill fort, and unearth over 2,000 years of history, leaning all about how the Romans, Normans and Saxons all left their mark on this impressive landscape. Continue to your accommodation, a beautiful historic manor house located two miles from Stonehenge, for a two-night stay. Tonight, dinner is included at the manor.
Day 7) Stonehenge & Highclere
This morning, depart for nearby Stonehenge—a World Heritage Site and the best-known prehistoric monument in Europe—where you will walk in the footsteps of your Neolithic ancestors. If you want something extra special, please ask about our sunset/sunrise experiences where you walk between the stones on a private tour. This afternoon, visit Highclere, better known as Downton Abbey. Explore the many state rooms, bedrooms as seen in the famous drama series and follow the stairs down to the cellars and old staff quarters. Tonight, dinner is included.
Day 8) London
Depart with your driver for London Heathrow Airport for your return flight or continue to central London.
Included with this private tour:
7 nights accommodation
7 luxury afternoon tea
Your very own professional driver-guide
and luxury vehicle
3 gourmet dinners
All entrance fees
All tolls and taxes
CHOOSE YOUR ACCOMMODATION:
In this category, we have hand-picked five-star guest houses or smaller luxury hotels. These lodgings are often family owned and offer a truly unique, authentic and welcome atmosphere where you are more likely to engage with local people than in a higher-end hotel. Some tours involve a mixture of both Superior and Luxury Boutique.
Through our 35 years of experience, we have hand-picked luxury boutique hotels which are not only very comfortable in the traditional sense, but just as importantly offer gourmet food, and an ambience giving you a truly authentic local experience. All our hotel choices are of unique character, range from 4-star to 5-star, and are either situated downtown, or enjoy a spectacular rural or village setting. Our detailed offer to you will specify the hotels recommended.
2024 Prices & Dates
Choose any dates. Price is determined by your choice of dates (season), accommodation type, and the number of people in your group. Prices below are based on the hotels described in the itinerary, and may change in accordance with your individual preferences.
Prices are in USD, per person, based on double occupancy.
From $4390 per person (group of 6 people)
From $4890 per person (group of 4 people)
From $6290 per person (group of 2 people)
Just a few tour highlights:
Stourhead & Montacute House
Highclere (Downton Abbey)
Want a luxury private tour? This tour can be customized to your wishes with 5-star luxury accommodation. Simply call, or email us with your specifics and we'll plan a program that's right for you.
Trisha and I wanted to drop you a line to formally thank you for making our recent 50th Wedding Anniversary Trip to England and Wales so special. Every aspect of our trip's planning and execution demonstrated your dedication to superior customer service. While the itinerary, accommodations and restaurant selections exceeded our expectations, it was your attention to every detail that stands out. It was a pleasure to just sit back and enjoy the experience without worrying about a thing.
Hugh, your interpersonal skills are exceptional. You demonstrated the ability to balance our often conflicting needs. Whether it was helping Trisha with her shopping or finding that interesting pub for a late afternoon pint for me, we both came away happy. In closing, this trip certainly convinced us of the merits of your full service private touring service and we hope to use your services on a future European trip. We have also told our friends of our great experience with Wanderlust Private Tours, so you might be getting some new business from the Philadelphia area.
Peter & Trisha Palmer, Philadelphia