THE 'REAL' DOWNTON ABBEY
The 'real' Downton Abbey is Highclere Castle - family seat of the Earls of Carnarvon which has not surprisingly become something of a 'pilgrimage' for fans of the smash hit TV show 'Downton Abbey'.
Easily accessible from London, a visit to Highclere can be combined with a trip to the village of Bampton (around 1 hour away) - location of the home of Mrs Crawley in the series and many of the the village scenes. Add an excellent pub lunch between the two and you get a full 'Downton day'.
An alternative is to see Highclere Castle and combine it with a visit to Oxford.
Highclere Castle & Basildon Park or Bampton
1 - 3 Persons: £610.00
4 - 6 Persons: £650.00
THE CHURCHILL FACTOR - CHARTWELL
Voted by a BBC poll as the "greatest Brit", wartime leader Winston Churchill holds a deep fascination for many visitors.
Not surprisingly, Churchill needed a ‘bolt hole’ and purchased and evolved Chartwell - a house and estate in the Kent countryside to the south of London.
Here you can see the place where he dictated many of his world renowned speeches and books as well as the studio at the heart of his love affair with art plus the superb gardens he was instrumental in developing.
Chartwell offers a unique insight into Churchill’s public and private life.
A day trip to Chartwell combines well with:
• Penshurst Place & Gardens: A fine ‘fortified manor house’ whose 15th century baronial hall is among the greatest in the country. The house itself is set among lovely gardens.
• Sissinghurst Gardens: A distinguished couple bought a derelict manor house in the 1930s where they developed its gardens which are generally regarded as among the finest in Britain.
Chartwell and Penshurst Place or Sissinghurst
1 -3 Persons: £575.00
4 -6 Persons: £630.00
Oxford & London are two cities where we can follow a 'trail' of locations known to Harry Potter fans the world over.
In the case of Oxford, 'Hogwarts Hall' and 'The Infirmary' and for the true Potter aficionado, a half day in Oxford can also be combined with the a visit to the Warner Brothers Harry Potter Studio Tour which lies on the outskirts of London.
For those with the time, rather than a day trip from London you might like to consider some 'extended touring' which could involve some overnight stays. This clearly provides a chance to experience a slice of life in rural England.
For some it offers the opportunity to follow a genealogical 'trail' which can sometimes also be done as a day tour depending on the geography.