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Home > United Kingdom > United Kingdom Itineraries > British Isles Grand Tour By Red Carnation

British Isles Grand Tour by Red Carnation

Departures

All year

Duration

13 Days

Locations

London, Dorset, Edinburgh, and County Mayo

Overview

Take in the most beautiful sights in the United Kingdom on this British Isles Grand Tour by Red Carnation Hotels. This bespoke tour offers an unparalleled experience into the heart of Scotland, carefully curated to showcase its most enchanting aspects. Indulge in exclusive stays at Red Carnation properties, from the vibrant heart of London to the serene landscapes of Dorset, the historic cobbled alleys of Edinburgh, and the rugged beauty of County Mayo, while enjoying the finest whiskies along the way.

Itinerary in Detail

    Day 1 – London

    Upon arrival into London Heathrow today, meet your private driver in the arrival’s hall for your private transfer to the Milestone Hotel. Enjoy the remainder of your day at leisure.

    Hotel: Milestone Hotel

    Day 2 – London

    Following an early breakfast, meet with your local host and official Royal Curator, and enjoy a short walk to Kensington Palace. Enjoy a tour of Kensington Palace before it opens to the public. Following your visit, a Royal Daimler, formerly owned by the Queen Mother awaits for a discovery of some of the highlights of London on route to your next destination. Here you will meet a London Expert who will reveal some of the most intriguing insights into Royal Life in the city. Your first stop will be at the Royal Heritage Jeweller where you will discover some of the most amazing collections the Royals have forged for generations. Champagne, soft drinks and nibbles will be served as you sit in the Royal Salon and enjoy a chance to see and try items such as Royal Tiaras. This evening, meet your private driver in the lobby for your departure to the Tower of London after hours. Upon arrival, the doors will be opened for you to meet with your Yeoman Warder for an overview of this 100-year-old World Heritage Site, and discover the infamous history of the Tower and those who lived and died here. Refreshments will be served in the Jewel House and following the visit, you will be chauffeured back to the Milestone Hotel.

    Hotel: Milestone Hotel

    Day 3 – London

    This morning you will be transferred to Victoria Station in time for your British Pullman experience. Restored to their former glory, British Pullman's carriages are as famous today as in the heyday of train travel. Whether you prefer afternoon tea or the sparkle of a festive lunch in the most splendid company — there's a journey for everyone. Following disembarkation, you will be transferred back to your hotel.

    Hotel: Milestone Hotel

    Day 4 – London - Dorset

    This morning, following check-out, meet with your private driver in the hotel lobby for transfer to Summer Lodge Hotel in Dorset. Upon arrival at Summer Lodge, the remainder of the day is spent at your leisure.

    Hotel: Summer Lodge

    Day 5 – Dorset

    This morning, following a leisurely breakfast, meet with your driver-guide for a full day of discovery. Begin the day with a visit to Sculpture by the Lakes in Pallington. Described as one of the most beautiful and unique sculpture parks in the United Kingdom. Sculpture by the Lakes marries the soft beauty of nature’s wild river landscape with the more formal presentation of monumental outdoor sculpture. Lunch today is suggested in the town of Sherborne, 1 hour from the Sculpture Garden. The town of Sherborne is a charming little English hamlet of historical significance. Enjoy a local pub lunch and then explore this UNESCO village with your guide. Return to Summer Lodge in the late afternoon for the remainder of the evening at leisure.

    Hotel: Summer Lodge

    Day 6 – Dorset

    This morning, following a leisurely breakfast, meet with your driver-guide for a visit to Abbotsbury Gardens on the South Coast. Journey through towns like Maiden Newton on route to the coast. These subtropical gardens are home to some of the most interesting variety of plants and flora in the area. The climate permits the growth of some quite surprising species. Following your visit, we suggest returning to Summer Lodge for a private picnic lunch, set up in the grounds of summer lodge for you. Relax and unwind as you dine in the gardens, by a table and with a comfortable seating area. A game of croquet will also be set up for you in the grounds of the gardens today and instruction can be offered by the lodge staff.

    Hotel: Summer Lodge

    Day 7 – Dorset - Exeter - Edinburgh

    This morning, following breakfast, meet your private driver in time for your transfer to Exter Airport where you will board your flight to Edinburgh. Upon arrival in Ednburgh airport, meet your private driver in the arrival’s hall for your transfer to 100 Princes Street.

    Hotel: 100 Princes Street

    Day 8 – Edinburgh

    This morning, meet with your private Harry Potter guide in the hotel lobby for a discovery of many of the locations which inspired JK Rowling in her creation of the world of Harry Potter. Your guide will discuss your interests and ensure the day is tailored to your levels of captivation. Begin with a journey to the Old Town, and onward to Greyfriars Kirkyard, to visit the tombstones which inspired JK Rowling with the naming of some of her favorite characters, including Tom Riddle and Professor McGonagall. From here, continue to the University of Edinburgh, and learn of the influence these ancient buildings had upon many of her tales. The tour will end with a visit to the pub which inspired the Three Broomsticks and if you like, a pause for a refreshment. The journey will end with a transfer back to your hotel. This afternoon is at leisure.

    Hotel: 100 Princes Street

    Day 9 – Edinburgh - St Andrews - Edinburgh

    Today, you travel to St. Andrews, the undisputed home of golf and a mecca for golfers from all over the world. Additionally, it is Scotland’s oldest university town, one-time ecclesiastical capital and the place where the Prince and Princess of Wales first met. The town’s main streets and numerous cobblestone alleys, dignified university buildings and medieval churches converge on the venerable ruins of the 12th-century cathedral. It is a charming place to explore.

    Hotel: 100 Princes Street

    Day 10 – Edinburgh - Shannon - County Mayo

    This morning, following breakfast, you will be transferred to Edinburgh Airport in time for your flight to Shannon, Ireland. Upon arrival in Shannon, you will be transferred to Ashford Castle where you will stay for the next 3 nights. Enjoy the remainder of your day at leisure.

    Hotel: Ashford Castle

    Day 11 – County Mayo

    This morning, you have an option to experience a morning of local fishing. Your guide will tailor your experience to suit your ability and interests. Depart from the castle by hand-crafted 19ft clinker traditional wooden boat on Lough Corrib for a half-day fishing experience. Others may wish to use the morning to explore the grounds, or simply relax or attend the spa. After one has fished to his heart’s content, it will be time to refresh before setting sail to a private picnic lunch on Chief’s Island. Depart by small boat with Frank for a 2.5-hour guided adventure. Frank will escort you on an exploration of Lough Corrib with a picnic pitstop at one of the more unique islands on the lake. Experience Lough Corrib at its finest where history, folklore and beautiful scenery create an experience like no other, before returning to the castle for the afternoon at leisure.

    Hotel: Ashford Castle

    Day 12: County Mayo

    This morning, following breakfast, depart from the hotel for the small village of Cong, a short distance away by hotel house car. In Cong, your driver will introduce you to Vincent Campbell, a Cong native with a deep-rooted passion for the history and natural wonders. From here, journey back to Ashford by car and enjoy a guided discovery of the grounds as you learn of its historical and natural treasures. Following the walk, you will be guided back to the hotel for some relaxation time. Early this afternoon, or following your walk, sit down to afternoon Tea at Ashford Castle, a tradition since 1868. Afternoon Tea menu offers guests a wide selection of specialty teas, delicate finger sandwiches, freshly baked scones, and delectable pastries. With spectacular views take your time to savour every delicious moment.

    Hotel: Ashford Castle

    Day 13: County Mayo - Shannon

    Today, after breakfast, meet your driver in the hotel lobby in time for your airport transfer.

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