South West England in Style
This is a high end tour staying at some of the very best hotels with superb dining experiences each night.
Explore the historical Roman town of Bath by river and bus before moving on by rail using various different steam lines and private charter trains to take you down into deepest Cornwall. Enjoy the beautiful breathtaking flourishing high summer scenery and revel in the historical sites and museums we will visit along the way.
Tour Manager: Stephen
Day 1 Monday 26 June (D) To start the tour we will assemble at the Bailbrook Hotel on the outskirts of Bath for 3 PM. For those arriving by train it’s 10 minutes by taxi from the city centre for those who joined by car there will be secure parking at the hotel for the length of the tour and we will return to the hotel at the conclusion of the tour in Cornwall for you to collect your car. It will be possible, if you are travelling a distance, to stay at the hotel the night prior to the tour or after the tour to make it more relaxed. We will start with a River cruise down to the centre of Bath to enjoy our opening function, tea in the exclusive Bath Pump Room to the accompaniment of the classical quartet. Returning to the hotel by taxi we enjoy our welcome meal together in a private dining room.
Day 2 Tuesday 27 June (B, D) There is much to explore in the environs of Bath. Starting with an open top city tour in a private bus to get the layout of the city before free time to explore your chosen options within the city which could include the Abbey, the costume Museum, the Holbein art Gallery or a tour of the Georgian areas. After free time for lunch we will head off for a private opening of Beckford’s Tower on the outskirts of the city before continuing to the National Trust Dyrham Park for a private tour and dinner within the main house.
Day 3 Wednesday 28 June (B, D) Today we explore further afield with a visit to Brunel’s historic HMS Great Britain in the centre of Bristol for a private tour before continuing to the National Trust property at Tyntesfield for a private tour of both the house and gardens. Following on from afternoon tea in the restaurant there we will return to our hotel in Bath for a final night and a meal together in the restaurant.
Day 4 Thursday 29 June (B,L,D) A morning departure to enable us to get to the North Somerset Railway in Taunton for a lunchtime train to Minehead with private dining. Our coach will meet us there to take is on for a private tour of the National Trust Dunster Castle with pre-dinner drinks on the roof – subject to weather. We will then continue on to our unique hotel Bovey Castle in Dartmoor. Steeped in rail history it was originally built as the country residence for WH Smith, who made his fortune with his stationery shops on railway platforms and subsequently owned by the Great Western Railway, there is much in the residence to remind one of its previous ownerships. Pre-dinner drinks will be served in the Mortonhampsted Car Museum before we dined together in a private dining room at the hotel.
Day 5 Friday 30 June (B,D) The day full of contrasts starting with a paddle steamer journey from Dartmouth up to Totnes where there will be time to familiarise yourself with this town dominated by its hilltop castle before continuing by bus to Paignton and catching a steam hauled train down to Kingswear. From there we will continue to a private opening of Coleton Fishacre the holiday home of the D’Oyly carte family now in the care of the National Trust for a tour of the house and gardens, followed by a dinner together before returning to the hotel.
Day 6 Saturday 1 July (B,D) Today we will have a private tour of the Lynton and Barnstaple Railway and a charter train on the short stretch of line which has been restored. Returning close to our hotel we will have a visit to Castle Drugo for a private tour and tea in the restaurant before returning to our hotel to dine together.
Day 7 Sunday 2 July (B,D) Today we head into the far South West crossing into Cornwall; we will stop at the Launceston railway for a private charter train and then join a regular service on the Bodmin Railway before continuing to our hotel on the seafront in Falmouth. We will dine in a seafood restaurant close to the hotel.
Day 8 Monday 3 July (B,D) The Gulf Stream has a dramatic effect on the climate in this part of Cornwall; enabling semitropical plants to flourish, today we will visit a number of gardens close to Falmouth with private tours with the gardening staff. By way of contrast we will then go on to the Lizard Peninsula and the National Trust owned area at Mullen Cove, where a warden will give us a talk on of the unique wildlife to be found there. We will return to the hotel for an evening meal together.
Day 9 Tuesday 4 July (B) Today you have the option of staying in Falmouth to visit the attractions there including Pendennis Castle or coming with us by branch line train to St Ives a unique artist orientated town on Cornwall’s northern coast. We will arrive and depart in St Ives by train with to explore its many sites including the Tate Art gallery (subject to opening). We return to Falmouth for our final evening meal together.
Day 10 Wednesday 5 July (B, L) An morning departure for out return to Bath stopping on route for our concluding meal together at Rick Stein’s famous seafood restaurant in Padstow. We will then continue on to Bath whilst you enjoy an afternoon siesta on the coach to enable you to pick up your cars or train connection or stay over at the hotel prior to departure the following day.