Door 2 Tour

Coach Holidays, Escorted Tours & Events

0330 440 3999

Monday - Friday 9am to 5pm

Grand Houses Of London

UK & Ireland
  • Duration: 5 days
  • Board Basis: Half Board
  • Tour Ref: D2TJUS8638

Holiday Summary

  • Travel Type: Coach

5 days

English Heritage 2019

PRICE FROM ? £825 per person
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Itinerary

Description

London’s grand houses offer intriguing insights into England’s history. We will visit Apsley House, dazzling London home of the Duke of Wellington, as well as glamorous Eltham Palace, neoclassical Kenwood, and Ranger’s House, with its recently re-presented collections of fine art and jewellery.

Self Drive Itinerary

Excursion One – Spencer House & Kenwood

We start our day with a guided tour of Spencer House. Built between 1756-1766 for an ancestor of Diana, Princess of Wales, this is London’s most magnificent 18th-century aristocratic house. Designed by John Vardy and James ‘Athenian’ Stuart, the State Rooms were among the first neoclassical interiors in Europe.

Next stop is Kenwood, set on the edge of Hampstead Heath and surrounded by tranquil landscaped gardens. This house was transformed by the famous architect Robert Adam between 1764 and 1779, and the breathtaking interiors include some of Adam’s finest surviving schemes. Kenwood is now also home to the 1st Earl of Iveagh’s world-class art collection with masterpieces by Rembrandt, Turner, Gainsborough and Vermeer. We are introduced to the house and its collections on our guided tour.

Excursion Two – Wellington Arch, Apsley House & St James’s

Wellington Arch is one of London’s most iconic monuments. Originally built as an entrance to Buckingham Palace, it later became a victory arch celebrating Wellington's defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo. It is crowned by the largest bronze sculpture in Europe, which depicts the Angel of Peace descending on the Quadriga of War. We learn more about the arch’s fascinating and sometimes surprising history on our guided tour with the Keeper of the Wellington Collection. Don’t miss the spectacular views over London’s Royal Parks from the balconies.

Apsley House, also known as Number 1, London, stands opposite Wellington Arch. This beautiful Georgian building was the London home of the first Duke of Wellington, and it has changed very little since his great victory at Waterloo in 1815. The house has stunning gilded interiors and one of the finest art collections in London, with paintings by Velázquez and Rubens, as well as a wonderful collection of silver and porcelain. The house will be opened exclusively for our group and we’ll enjoy a guided tour to learn more about the ‘Iron Duke’ and his magnificent collections.


After lunch at leisure, we enjoy a Blue Plaque guided walking tour of St James’s, an exclusive area of London that was once the home of the very wealthiest members of the British aristocracy. Along the way we discover the links between famous people and the places in which they lived and worked.

The evening is left free for you to make your own dinner arrangements.

Excursion Three – Ranger’s House & Eltham Palace and Gardens

We travel to Ranger’s House, located on the edge of Greenwich Park. This elegant Georgian villa houses the Wernher Collection, a remarkable collection of works of art amassed by diamond magnate Sir Julius Wernher. Nearly 700 pieces are on display, from ivories and jewellery to paintings and porcelain. We enjoy a guided tour of this fascinating collection followed by tea and biscuits.

Our final visit is to Eltham Palace where we will have lunch. This stunning 1930s Art Deco mansion was built by the wealthy Courtauld family within the remains of the medieval Eltham Palace, the childhood home of Henry VIII. The result is a fascinating blend of 20th century interiors and ancient surroundings. Highlights include the stunning entrance hall, the magnificent Great Hall, and 19 acres of outstanding gardens in and around the medieval moat. After lunch we enjoy a guided tour of the palace and an exclusive tour of the gardens led by the Head Gardener.

The evening is left free for you to make your own dinner arrangements.

Self Drive Bullets

  • 4 nights bed and breakfast plus 2 dinners at the Tower Hotel, London
  • Porterage
  • Welcome drink
  • After dinner tea and coffee at the hotel
  • Coach transfers to and from your excursions
  • Visits to Spencer House, Kenwood, Wellington Arch, Apsley House, St James’s, Ranger’s House & Eltham Palace and Gardens
  • Guided tour of Spencer House
  • Guided tour of Kenwood
  • Guided tour by the Keeper of the Wellington Collection at Wellington Arch
  • Exclusive private guided tour of Apsley House
  • Blue Plaque guided walking tour of St James’s
  • Guided tour of the Wernher Collection and refreshments at Ranger’s House
  • Lunch* and guided tour of Eltham Palace and Gardens
  • Guidebooks for selected properties
  • Services of a Tour Manager

    *Please inform us at the time of booking of any special dietary requirements

    Please note: This tour does not have the option to add return coach travel

Are you an English Heritage Member?

If you are a member of English Heritage you can save a further £40pp on the price shown. To redeem this all you need to do is tick the "EH Member Discount" box on the "Passenger Options" page during the booking process.

Search Bullets

  • 4 nights bed and breakfast plus 2 dinners at the Tower Hotel, London
  • Visits to Spencer House, Kenwood, Wellington Arch, Apsley House, St James’s, Ranger’s House & Eltham Palace and Gardens
  • Services of a Tour Manager

Helpful Information

Please note: You will need a reasonable degree of mobility to keep up with the pace of the tour; you may encounter steep or rough terrain and have stairs to climb. As a general guideline, we recommend that you are comfortable to stroll for 20-30 minutes at a time.

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