English Countryside Retreat - 9 Days
- Enjoy a scenic boat ride in England's northern Lake District
- Experience the majesty of Blenheim Palace
- Go wine tasting in the beautiful Cornwall region
|Day 1||Arrival in the Lake District||Windermere|
|Day 2||Explore the Lakes||Windermere|
|Day 3||Boat Ride on Ullswater Lake||Windermere|
|Day 4||Travel to the Cotswolds||Chipping Campden|
|Day 5||Tour Blenheim Palace||Chipping Campden|
|Day 6||Travel to Cornwall||Cornwall|
|Day 7||Visit a Rainforest... in England?||Cornwall|
|Day 8||Wine Tasting in Cornwall||Cornwall|
|Day 9||Farewell to England!|
Day 1: Arrival in the Lake District
Welcome to the U.K.!
Your countryside retreat begins in the romantic Lake District National Park, located in the county of Cumbria, in Northwest England. This protected area encompasses 912 square miles (2,362 square km) of unspoiled forests, mountains, lakes, coastline, and estuaries. These incomparable landscapes can aptly be described as poetic, as they've inspired the verse and prose works of such famous British writers as William Wordsworth and Beatrix Potter.
This is a luxurious excursion, too, as the moment you arrive at the airport you'll be met by a private car ready to transfer you to your hotel nestled in the countryside.
Day 2: Explore the Lakes
Today, you will dive headfirst into the breathtaking grandeur and tranquil beauty of Lake District National Park on a guided tour. As part of this experience, you will travel in an air-conditioned minivan to the 10 most iconic lakes in the region. These include the vast reservoir of Thirlmere, as well as Buttermere, which is often voted as having one of the most beautiful views in all of England.
During the tour, your expert guide will take you to the most remote and scenic spots while describing the history of the charming lakeside villages you'll pass along the way. You'll also do a bit of hiking on mountain trails and even visit a scenic waterfall.
Day 3: Boat Ride on Ullswater Lake
After breakfast, you'll embark on a boat tour of Ullswater Lake. This is not only one of the most beautiful bodies of water in England's Lake District, but at nine miles long and 0.75 miles wide, it's also the second largest.
The boat will depart from Glenridding Pier, traveling over glassy, tranquil waters as you recline on deck and enjoy the passing scenery. The postcard views include rugged peaks and green hills that form the lake’s stunning backdrop. There will be plenty of time to relax on the boat and snap photos, and you'll even make time to disembark and visit the gorgeous lakeside villages of Howtown and Pooley Bridge.
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
Day 4: Travel to the Cotswolds
In the morning, you will travel to the Cotswolds, a region located in the southeast of England. Any anglophile should fall instantly in love with the Cotswolds, as it's an area seemingly lost in time, featuring throwback villages, market towns, country cottages, ancient chapels, old stone almshouses, and stately manor homes. Equally impressive is that all of these are nestled amid the hedgerows and rolling green hills that define the English countryside.
In the afternoon you will enjoy a scenic tour of the most charming villages of this region, including Broadway, Chipping Campden, Blockley, and Dover's Hill. As you tour the area, your guide will educate you about the history of these towns and the region where they're located. This history is a rich one, as it goes all the way back to Ancient Rome, and there are still Roman ruins in the Cotswolds today.
Day 5: Tour Blenheim Palace
Today we will take you to Oxfordshire, in southeast England, where you'll enjoy a guided tour of Blenheim Palace, a magnificent country residence with over 300 years of history. It was built in 1704 and gifted by Queen Anne to the great British general, the Ist Duke of Marlborough. As well as being the current home of the 12th Duke of Marlborough, it is also the birthplace of England's most famous prime minister, Winston Churchill (1874-1955). It's a UNESCO World Heritage Site featuring 187 rooms in a property sitting on 2,000 expansive acres, and it's the only non-royal palace in England.
On a guided tour of the palace, you'll learn its fascinating history as you visit the gilded state-rooms and view the historic tapestries, portraits, and antique furniture that fill its halls and chambers. Beyond the main house are well-manicured formal gardens you can stroll and which feature everything from water terraces, rose bushes, fountains, elaborate topiaries, and even a secret garden boasting hidden treasures. Blenheim Palace truly is one of the great properties of England.
Day 6: Travel to Cornwall
In the morning, you will travel by private car service from London to the southwestern tip of the country and the region of Cornwall. This ruggedly beautiful area of England is famous for its charming coastal towns, sandy beaches, rocky seaside cliffs, medieval castles, and tranquil green countryside.
The car journey will take a few hours, so you'll likely be tired by the time you arrive at your hotel and check-in. Still, as a welcoming introduction to this wonderful region, we'll arrange a gourmet dinner for you in a top restaurant in one of Cornwall's famous fishing villages.
Day 7: Visit a Rainforest... in England?
After enjoying breakfast, you'll leave your hotel and not just explore more of Cornwall's stunning landscapes, but tour exotic gardens, too. That's because today you're going to visit the Eden Project. This is a massive greenhouse complex that sits in an excavated clay pit near the Cornwall coast.
Eden is comprised of two biomes that house the largest indoor rainforest in the world. One thousand different plant species exist here cultivated from four of the world's rainforest environments: Southeast Asia, West Africa, South America, and various tropical islands. Therefore by visiting Eden, you'll effectively be traveling around the entire world in a single afternoon.
Day 8: Wine Tasting in Cornwall
Believe it or not, in recent years England has come into its own as a wine-producing nation. It's even picked up a few Gold Star Awards for its still and sparkling varietals. Today you'll have the chance to enjoy a wine-tasting experience in Cornwall at the famous Camel Valley Vineyards. As part of this tasting, you will take a vineyard tour led by a knowledgeable guide who will explain its history and the unique methods of English viticulture.
You'll then sample world-class English sparkling wines on a veranda complete with stunning views of the vineyards and beyond to the rolling green hills of the Cornish countryside. It's the perfect compliment to your English country getaway!
Day 9: Farewell to England!
And so your luxury English countryside vacation comes to an end. Today you'll enjoy one final private transfer from your hotel to the airport, where you'll catch your flight home. Until next time!