Day trips, private tours from Londo​n​

Hampton Court Palace

Why not take a day trip from London? Some tour companies try to combine three different places into a day and if you have limited time this may be necessary but if you prefer not to feel rushed Explore and Discover Tours offer you the chance to spend the whole day in just one or maybe two places and explore in more depth at your own pace. I will plan your itinerary with you.
Hire of a minibus or car is necessary for small groups. Many of the places mentioned below are also easily accessible by train, ask me for details. If you have a larger group and already have a coach booked I will work with your driver to conduct the tour. I can also recommend several coach companies that I work with if you have not already made a booking.

Below are some places I would recommend to visit on a day trip from London.

Windsor
Windsor Castle has been the home of our kings and queens for 900 years. It is the oldest and largest inhabited castle in the world. It is a palace within a castle and one of the Queen’s official residences. Enjoy a guided tour of the castle precincts and St George’s Chapel, which is the spiritual home of the Order of the Garter, our highest order of chivalry. Visit the State Apartments and Queen Mary’s Dolls’ House. Windsor is 50 minutes from London by train. Later in the day we can explore Windsor on a walking tour and perhaps even cross the bridge over the River Thames to go into Eton to see Eton College where 19 prime ministers have been educated and also Prince William and Prince Harry. Windsor can also be combined with Oxford or with Hampton court with hire of a vehicle.

Windsor Castle

Hampton Court Palace
First built as a manor house for Cardinal Wolsey, it was Henry VIII who turned Hampton Court into a palace. Later William III and Queen Mary employed Sir Christopher Wren to extend it so it is a fascinating mix of Tudor and Baroque architecture. The interiors are decorated with paintings and furniture from the Royal Collection. The Palace is situated in a beautiful riverside setting with lovely gardens.
Oxford
Oxford is one of Europe’s oldest University towns, the first students arrived here in the 12th century and university and town are inseparable both breathing life into each other. The Oxford colleges have educated world famous figures throughout the centuries. Our tour will include a visit to one or two colleges. The city has witnessed many of England’s great historical events. Enjoy its special atmosphere and fine architecture, the poet Matthew Arnold referred to its buildings as ‘Oxford’s dreaming spires’. Oxford can be combined with the Cotswolds.
Leeds Castle
Leeds Castle in Kent is special because of its romantic setting on two islands on a lake. The oldest parts of the castle date from the 1100s and other parts from the 19th C. The castle was granted to 6 Queen’s of England as part of their marriage agreement. In the 1920s it was purchased by the American Lady Bailie and got striking new interior design by Armand-Albert Rateau and Stephen Boudin.
Canterbury
Once an important Roman town Canterbury is where Christianity gained a firm foothold on English soil 1,400 years ago with the arrival of St Augustine. The fine cathedral was built over many centuries and embraces all the stages of Gothic architecture. The site of Thomas Becket’s martyrdom in 1170, Canterbury Cathedral holds a unique place in the history of the Church of England and it is still today the seat of its senior Archbishop and the mother church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. Canterbury can be visited by train or with a vehicle could be combined with a visit to Leeds Castle.

Leeds Castle

Roman Baths Museum in Bath

Bath
The magnificent Georgian city of Bath is a UNESCO World Heritage site. For 2000 years it has been a spa town built around Britain’s only naturally occurring hot mineral springs. We will visit the Roman Baths. In the 18th century Bath became a fashionable place to take the waters for their supposed health benefits and also a popular place for fashionable entertainments. This is Jane Austen’s Bath and it is also the period which gave the city some of Europe’s finest architecture, in the Georgian style. Bath could be combined with Stonehenge or Salisbury.

Stratford upon Avon
This lovely Warwickshire town is famous for its connections with Shakespeare. He was born here in 1564, educated at the local Grammar school and married a local girl Anne Hathaway. After his career in London he returned to Stratford for his retirement. See the house where he was born, Holy Trinity Church where he is buried, Anne Hathaway’s Cottage and many other places associated with him. His plays are performed by the Royal Shakespeare Company at their theatre on the banks of the River Avon. Stratford upon Avon can be combined with the Cotswolds or Oxford or Coventry Cathedral.
Salisbury
Visit the typically English town of Salisbury famous for its beautiful cathedral. This cathedral took just 38 years to build and it is a fine example of the Early English style of Gothic architecture. It is surrounded by the Close, a serene open space bordered by beautiful period houses with interesting historic and literary connections. The town retains much of its medieval character, narrow streets, fine churches, half timbered houses and coaching inns. Salisbury can be combined with Stonehenge or Winchester.

Salisbury Cathedral

St John’s College Cambridge

Cambridge
Visit this university city with it’s lovely setting on the River Cam. Discover the delights of the city on a walking tour, visit Kings College and or another college, enjoy the teashops, even punt on the River Cam. Cambridge can be combined with Ely Cathedral.
York by train
Enjoy a guided tour of York Minster famous for its medieval stained glass and considered one of the finest Gothic cathedrals in Europe. A guided tour of the historic city of York will also be included, learn about the influence that the Romans, the Vikings, chocolate and the railways have had on this wonderful city as well as its role in the development of Christianity.
Stonehenge
Stonehenge is a ancient prehistoric structure. Today it is an enigma. How was it built? How were the stones transported and what was it for? This atmospheric site has fascinated and inspired throughout its history. Stonehenge can be combined with Bath or Salisbury.

Stonehenge

Castle Combe Cotswolds

The Cotswolds
Designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Cotswolds is a stretch of rolling hills lying mostly in Gloucestershire. The picturesque towns and villages, full of charming limestone cottages, were built as the result of wealth created from the wool trade in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries and the area has kept its wonderful old world charm. I will help you to choose the best villages to visit.
Winchester
Winchester was a Roman town and later Alfred the Great made it the capital of his kingdom of Wessex so this place has lots of history. It also has a magnificent cathedral, a famous school Winchester College, a medieval Great Hall and a great natural setting in the chalk downs of Hampshire in the green valley of the River Itchen.