THE COTSWOLDS GARDENS
& CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW
THE COTSWOLDS GARDENS
& CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW
8 Days / 7 Nights
May 20 - 27, 2017
Hidcote Manor Gardens
A not-to-miss trip of a lifetime for garden enthusiasts and for all people who love nature's beauty!
We'll spend a week in The Cotswolds touring renowned award-winning gardens -- Hidcote, Highgrove, Barnsley House, Kiftsgate and many more... seeing Cotswold old market villages... and capping off the week visiting the world-famous Chelsea Flower Show in London.
Great trip for solo travelers and friends. Limited to 15 persons.
The Cotswold Garden & Chelsea Flower Show Trip Is Designed To Provide:
A fabulous vacation experience in the beautiful English countryside when The Cotswolds' landscape is in glorious full bloom!
A comprehensive week visiting renowned Cotswold gardens and historic market villages with our Cotswold local English guide.. capped spending a day at the world-famous Chelsea Flower Show.
A friendly and fun small group environment limited to 15 persons. Enjoy the camaraderie and begin friendships with like-minded travelers.
Optional before breakfast morning pleasure walks.
Recommended restaurants should you want to explore on your own, yet everyone is invited to join local-cuisine group meals.
Connoisseur service – fully escorted tour with personal & customized service.
May 20, Saturday – Windsor - Welcome Reception High-Tea & Dinner
May 21, Sunday – Travel to The Cotswolds - National Garden Scheme Private Garden
May 22, Monday – Hidcote Manor - Kiftsgate Court
May 23, Tuesday – Royal Gardens at Highgrove - Abbey House - Barnsley House
May 24, Wednesday – Bourton House - Sezincote - Sudeley Castle
May 25, Thursday – Blenheim Palace - Chenies Manor
May 26, Friday – RHS Chelsea Flower Show - Farewell Dinner
May 27, Saturday – London I Departure for Home or Continued Travels
Detailed Trip Itinerary:
Saturday, May 20
Tour participants will arrive independently to London. At Heathrow Airport (LHR) you will be met by a private transfer who will drive you to your hotel in the Royal Borough of Windsor. We’ll be staying in the heart of historic Windsor at the Macdonald Windsor Hotel, a charming 4-star hotel located on High Street two minutes from Windsor Castle. Once checked in, the balance of the day is at leisure. We can either arrange a tour of Windsor Castle or a stroll around the beautiful, world-renowned ornamental Savill Gardens which are almost on your doorstep. The week-long tour begins at 5.30PM with a Welcome Reception English Afternoon High-Tea & Light Dinner… an opportunity to relax, meet everyone and review the week’s itinerary.
Sunday, May 21
For early risers, an optional before breakfast group pleasure walk through Windsor is offered. Full English breakfast is served at the hotel. For those who are regular church goers back home, you might like to attend the 10.45AM service of Choral Matins. We’ll be on our way at 1:00PM for a 90 minute drive into The Cotswolds where we will stop and tour a private garden that is part of the National Garden Scheme. Afternoon tea and cakes will be part of the garden visit.
We’ll stay the next four nights in The Cotswolds at The Close Hotel located in Tetbury, Gloucestershire. The Close Hotel is a member of the Cotswold Inns & Hotels luxury boutique collection. The hotel is set in a former 16th century townhouse, designed to match the English splendor of The Cotswolds. Tetbury is an ancient market town located in the heart of The Cotswolds… full of friendly locals and a few rural royals… with fabulous antique shops and boutiques.
Monday, May 22
Optional before breakfast morning pleasure walk through Tetbury is offered, followed with an English breakfast at the hotel. After breakfast we’ll board our private mini-bus with our Cotswold local guide for an enjoyable day visiting Hidcote Manor Garden and Kiftsgate Court Gardens. We’ll stop mid-day to have a homely English country lunch in Kiftsgate’s tearoom.
Hidcote Manor Garden is considered to be one of the masterpiece gardens in England. It was started in 1907 by Lawrence Johnston. Johnston’s garden design with themed “outdoor rooms” revolutionized garden design throughout England,.. and still influences garden designers today. Throughout Johnston’s extensive world travels to Continental Europe, China and Africa, he would bring back plants for Hidcote… and he would have plants imported from Australia and Japan. Over the years many plants have been named after Johnston or Hidcote in recognition of his extraordinary talent and plantsmanship. Within Hidcote’s gardens are hedges, topiaries, flowers in bedding schemes, stone walls, ponds & fountains, and grand vistas. The garden feels secluded and private as if Johnston was still there today.
Kiftsgate Court Gardens is where three generations of women in one family created and shaped a garden to be one of the Cotswold’s most treasured. Kiftsgate gardens began in the 1920s by Heather Muir who had an organic approach, with a feminine feel, to gardening. In the 1930s she developed the property’s steep banks to take advantage of the spectacular views to the west. In the1950s Muir’s daughter, Diany Binny, opened up the garden for public viewing. She added manyfeatures including a pool in the lower garden, two major sculptures, and she redesigned the sunk garden to incorporate a small pool and a wellhead fountain. Anne Chambers, daughter of Binny and granddaughter of Muir, continues the family tradition of seeking out new and interesting plants for Kiftsgate to complement the color schemes which were established when the garden was originally laid out. The new water garden is a contemporary oasis and evidence of her desire to bring the garden into the 21st century.
Tuesday, May 23
Morning optional pleasure walk followed by an English breakfast… then we are off to visit three renowned Cotswold gardens… Abbey House Gardens, Barnsley House Gardens and The Royal Gardens at Highgrove where have a two hour guided tour and afterwards enjoy an afternoon champagne tea.
The Royal Gardens at Highgrove are the private gardens owned by The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall. The estate is located just outside Tetbury. The Prince, an avid gardener, bought the estate in 1980. He is adamant that it should be an entirely organic garden and farm. Abbey House Gardens is a lovely country house garden located in Malmesbury. The garden is set on five acre with over 10,000 different plants, including over 2,000 rose varieties. Barnsley House, built in 1697 of Cotswold stone, is a perfect example of the English country house and garden. The internationally acclaimed garden, with remarkable beauty, was designed by Rosemary Verey, recognized as the “Grand Dame” of Cotswold garden designers.
Wednesday, May 24
Today is an exciting full day of touring… we’ll visit three noted Cotswold gardens – Bourton House Gardens, Sezincote and Sudeley Castle… and take a circular tour of northern historic Cotswold market villages – i.e.: Stow on the Wold, Bourton on the Water, Broadway and Chipping Campden.
Bourton House Gardens is an award-winning three acre jewel… winner of the prestigious Historic Houses Association / Christie’s “Garden of the Year” Award. The garden is surrounded by a stately 18th century manor house. Sezincote is a unique family owned garden covering over 200 acres set inside a thriving agriculture estate. The landscape has remained unchanged since the mid-19th century. The garden has a series of spring-fed pools that connect downward to an island pool in the valley bottom before joining the River Evenlode. Sudeley Castle is the former home and the burial place of Queen Catherine Parr, the sixth wife of King Henry VIII. Sudeley Castle has nine individual gardens… all unique and beautiful. Elizabeth, Lady Ashcomb, is the current owner and lives on the estate.
Thursday, May 25
After breakfast we’ll check out of our Tetbury hotel and we’ll be off on our final day of touring beautiful country gardens before traveling to London. We’ll first tour magnificent Blenheim Palace and stroll through its expansive gardens. The palace is a grandiose country house built in the early 1700s. It is one of England’s largest houses. Blenheim is the birthplace and ancestral home of Sir Winston Churchill. It is a not-to-miss UNSECO World Heritage Site.
In the afternoon we’ll tour Chenies Manor House and Gardens, a historic and distinguished tudor manor house building with award winning gardens which are considered one of England’s most beautiful gardens. Chenies is a past winner of the Historic Houses Association / Christie’s “Garden of the Year” Award.
We’ll then head to London where we’ll stay two nights at The Chesterfield Mayfair, a 2016 Conde Nast Traveler Top 25 London Hotel Award recipient. The Regency style hotel is located in the exclusive Mayfair district of central London, near designer shopping and many of the city's most iconic attractions. The hotel feels comparable to a traditional London private club.
Friday, May 26
After an optional before breakfast pleasure walk through London’s Hyde Park, followed with breakfast at the hotel… we’ll take a private transfer to arrive early for a memorable day visiting Royal Horticulture Society’s world-famous Chelsea Flower Show. The Chelsea Flower Show is the world’s most prestigious flower show attracting gardening enthusiasts and designers from all corners of the world. The show is held in the middle of London at the Royal Hospital Chelsea. We’ll see the show’s highlights, including Best in Show, Best Fresh Garden and Best Artisan Garden… and tour the Great Pavilion that has more than 100 colorful exhibits from the world’s best nurseries, growers and florists. It will be a treasured day to remember for all flower lovers!
The afternoon will be open to tour the flower show at your leisure. Or you can take the afternoon to visit London landmarks or take in some fabulous London shopping. In the evening we’ll gather for a traditional English cuisine farewell dinner.
Saturday, May 27
After an optional morning pleasure walk we’ll gather for a full English breakfast… we’ll share our inspirations from the trip… and say our goodbyes.
Please Note: WalkEurope strives to operate according to our published itinerary. However, in the event of unforeseen circumstances beyond our control or opportunities that would enhance the itinerary, adjustments may be necessary.
Small group tour, limited to 15 persons
Seven nights premium accommodations in personally selected elegant and charming 4-star hotels.
The Royal Gardens at Highgrove Afternoon Champagne Tea Lunch
Farewell Dinner with Traditional English Cuisine
Tea & Cakes at National Garden Scheme Private Garden
Tea & Cakes at Barnsley House Garden
Visit to private garden associated with the National Garden Scheme.
Day trip to The Royal Gardens at Highgrove, Abbey House Gardens and Barnsley House Gardens.
Day trip to Hidcote Manor Garden and Kitsgate.
Day trip to Bourton House, Sezincote, and Sudeley Castle
Day trip to Blenheim Palace and Chenies Manor.
Full day at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.
Cotswold local English guide.
Admission to all gardens, palaces, castles, and villas.
Admission to the Chelsea Flower Show.
Morning pleasure walks - optional before breakfast group walks.
Transport from London's LHR airport to Windsor
Ground transportation for all group activities and day trips.
Connoisseur service – fully escorted tour with personal & customized service.
Arrival & Departure City:
$4,750 – 8 days / 7 nights per person in double occupancy shared hotel room. For solo travelers, we will try to find you a roommate. Tour cost does not include airfare.
Added cost for private single room hotel accommodation option - $1,275
Tour cost includes private transfer from London Heathrow Airport to Windsor
Tour cost includes group transfer from The Cotswolds to London
Space Is Limited -- Available on 1st Reserve Basis -- Recommended to Reserve Early!
Limited to 15 persons.
Note: Trip is subject to meeting 8-10 person participation; itinerary subject to changes.