MAY 17-26 2019
English Gardens are acknowledged to be the best in the world and we combine castles, manors and the Chelsea flower show to create this once in a lifetime trip! Our group provides a personal and intimate look at the magnificent formal and planned gardens known the world over. If you have promised yourself that "someday" you would visit the beautiful countryside and picturesque villages of England, that day has come!
After landing in London we'll drive to Wisley Gardens which has one of the largest garden collections in the world. We'll see alpine plant displays, herbaceous perennials and mixed borders. After lunch we'll drive to Windsor and Windsor Castle, the official residence of the Queen. Covering thirteen acres, it's the largest inhabited castle in the world. Inside are the Upper and Middle wards, Round Tower and St. George Chapel where Harry and Megan married! After a short drive to our hotel we'll enjoy dinner at the hotel restaurant.
Today we'll visit Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of Winston Churchill and Britian's largest private house. After lunch, Hidcote Manor and nearby Kiftsgate Courts Garden will have us in blooming heaven! Its design has influenced many gardens. Tonight we'll stay in the Cotswalds with its charming villages that you'll fall in love with! Cheltenham is our destination village where we'll stay and enjoy dinner.
Another garden day you'll never forget! After a wholesome English breakfast, our full day excursion includes Sudeley Castle with award winning gardens that compliment the tranquility of the castle and its ruins. Next, we'll stop to visit Painswick Rococo Gardens before returning to our hotel for a free evening.
Today we visit Pashley Manor driving into East Sussex followed by Great Dixter House & Gardens, home of gardener Christopher Lloyd. We'll continue our travels to visit Sissinghurst which are among the most famous gardens in England. You can climb to the top and enjoy the view beneath you in all its glorious color. Simply breathtaking!
On this day we'll mix a little history along with a castle visit. Just a short drive is Leeds castle where you can ride up in a tethered hot air balloon to enjoy the castle below. Beyond Leeds is England's largest and most historical castle~ "Dover Castle". Founded in the 12th century, it was here that World War II battle plans were devised. Before heading back to our hotel, we'll stop at the Secret Wartime Tunnels and learn about the military significance.
Everyone has heard of King Henry VIII and his many wives, most who met an untimely fate. Today's visit is the 16th century home of Anne Boleyn who was executed for adultery. The charming grounds and the small moated castle will enamour you! On our way to London, we will stop by Chartwell, Winston Churchills much loved home with free time to explore the house where many rooms are left exactly the same that the family left them. You'll notice the hillside gardens that reflect Churchill's love of nature. Following lunch we'll drive through the countryside before arriving into London! Dinner will be at our hotel.
It's here! The " Super Bowl of Gardening" has finally arrived~ the Chelsea Flower Show! You'll be amazed at the flower competition with entries from all over the world. There are contests on venues set up in the grounds and you'll never want to leave. This is what the Brits call simply smashing!! I'm sure you'll be "Gobsmacked"!!