4 Day Hampton Court Flower Show

Back-Roads Small Group Tour starting in London and finishing in London

Countries Visited: England 
2015 Back-Roads UK & Europe Summer Tours
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Operator: Back-Roads Reviews: Not Yet Reviewed
Style: Small Group    Email a Friend
Duration: 4 Days    Compare Tour
From: London to London    Save to Shortlist
Tour Code: BRSHC

Tour Description

The magnificent setting of Hampton Court Palace is a fantastic backdrop for the world’s largest flower show. Packed with ideas on how to grow specific types of plants and flowers, how to nurture the environment and make the most of your garden, the show combines quality, innovation and creativity, featuring spectacular show gardens and stunning horticultural exhibitions. And to make your visit special, we have built a delightful tour around this iconic event, taking you to some of the best homes and gardens in London and Kent.

Tour Inclusions:

  • 3 nights in charming accommodation
  • Driver/guide companion
  • Mini-coach transportation throughout
  • Full English breakfast daily
  • 2 x evening meals
  • All entrance fees to gardens and stately homes included in the itinerary

Please Note: Every year we put on several mini-coaches for this event. In order to keep with the Back Road ethos of small group touring, each mini-coach will follow a different itinerary. Whilst all of the gardens and stately homes listed below will be visited, the days in which they are visited and the order of the visits will vary from what has been published.

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Hever CastleKew GardensChartwellHampton Court Flower Show
RHS Garden Wisley and Hever Castle
See the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Garden Wisley, which was gifted to the RHS in 1903 and since then it has evolved into a world class garden. Explore the beautiful Bowes-Lyon Rose Garden, the picturesque orchard and the huge cathedral-like glass house with its world class tropical plant collection. This afternoon visit Hever Castle, set in the Kent countryside and once home to Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII’s second wife. This historic castle with its double moat and 125 acres of spectacular gardens offers visitors plenty to discover. Stay: The Royal Wells Hotel (or similar) (D)
Sissinghurst & Chartwell
Today we travel to Sissinghurst Castle Gardens, created by novelist Vita Sackville-West and her husband Harold Nicolson in the 1930's. This outstanding garden showcases strict geometry and an intimate atmosphere. Visit the rose garden, the white garden, the cottage garden and parts of the house open to the public. This afternoon we visit Chartwell, once the family home to Winston Churchill. Stroll through the beautiful tranquil garden and discover rooms which remain much as they were when he lived here. Stay: Alexander Pope Hotel (or similar) (B)
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Ham House and Garden
Today we spend much of the morning exploring the world’s most famous garden, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. With over 300 acres of beautiful landscape and an outstanding collection of plants this UNESCO World Heritage Site is an absolute must see. Highlights include the Treetop walkway, the Water Lily House and The Princess of Wales Conservatory. This afternoon we visit Ham House, one of Europe’s greatest 17th century houses. Discover its outstanding collection of furniture and textiles and explore the famous cherry garden and orangery. Stay: Alexander Pope Hotel (or similar) (B/D)
Hampton Court Flower Show
Our last day is devoted to the Show; Hampton Court Palace providing a spectacular backdrop for what is the world’s largest flower show. There is something for everyone to enjoy, and you can spend the day amidst the fine show gardens and horticultural exhibitions. Show tickets do not automatically include entry to the Palace itself, but it would be a pity not to explore this great and historic building while you are in situ, so we are happy to include entry to this also to make your day complete. After a wonderful day our tour finishes back in London. (B)

Pick-up and Drop off
This tour commences from the Grange Wellington Hotel, 71-72 Vincent Square, London, SW1P 2PA at 8:30am. Please ensure you are at the meeting point at least 15 minutes prior to departure. Drop-off 5:30pm at Grange Wellington Hotel, 71-72 Vincent Square, London, SW1P 2PA. Please bear in mind that drop-off time is an estimate only – traffic can be unpredictable!

Back-Roads Touring have hand-picked an extensive portfolio of quality properties across Europe and to ensure the very best experience on each of our tours, hotels may vary to those listed in this itinerary.

In the event we are unable to visit a garden due to unforeseen changes in opening hours or bad weather, we will substitute an alternative garden of equal interest.

All of our tours involve walking and require our guests to board and disembark our vehicles several times a day making this tour unsuitable for those with reduced mobility.
Back-Roads Touring has over 25 years experience in small group tours of the UK and Europe. With a maximum of 16 people per tour, you can be assured of a more intimate and relaxing travel experience.
Region: UK & Ireland Guided: Driver Guide Average Age: 40-60
Style: Small Group Coach: 4 Star Flights: Not Included
Accommodation: Various Max Group Size: 18 (Avg. 10) Airport Transfers: Available
Hotels: Central - Mostly Free Coach WiFi: No Tips: Optional on Tour
* Source: Back-Roads for tours in UK & Ireland . Some variances may occur on this tour and information is provided as a guide only.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who goes on a Back-Roads tour?

They are mainly English-speaking and in the main come from Canada, the USA, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Singapore and Hong Kong. We do have other nationalities join occasionally but all tour commentaries are in English. We believe that our tours appeal to individuals who enjoy culture, good food, meeting like-minded people, exploring local regions and want a more relaxing style of travel. We welcome first time travellers, however, also find that many of our passengers have travelled with us before and continue to do so.

Are Back-Roads tours guaranteed?

Unlike most other tour operators, once we've accepted your booking, you've paid your deposit, we promise that we won't cancel your tour unless forced to do so by circumstances beyond our control. If you've invested your dreams in us, we'll make them a reality. On rare occasions when there are less than 4 people booked on a tour, we'll give you the opportunity of cancelling without cost or transferring to another Back-Roads Touring tour with more participants.

What is the typical age of a Back-Roads client?

There tends to be a fairly wide range of ages, but broadly our clients are in the 40-65 age group. Our tours are designed principally for adults, but we will consider accepting children aged 12 or over on request. Please note that triple and family rooms are not always available.

What grade of hotel does Back-Roads use?

We generally use 3 star / 4 star standard accommodations ranging from guest houses, country inns, town centre hotels and the occasional castle! But rather than going by the official grading (which is based solely on the facilities available rather than the standard), we base our choices on quality. So on occasions we might use what is officially a 2-star hotel, but one which we know to be much better than a lot of higher-graded hotels! In all properties the rooms have ensuite bathrooms.

What kind of room should I book?

A very important point to note when you are booking is that we need to know whether you want a twin room (two single-sized beds in a room) or a double room (one standard-sized bed for two people). You need to tell Global Journeys at the time of enquiry what your choice is as the room types are not interchangeable.

Do we dine at the hotels?

All breakfasts are taken in the accommodations. We have a minimum of a two-course cooked evening meal at many of them but on occasion, to add variety to your tour experience, we also dine out at local pubs and restaurants. When we dine out it is understandably to a budget but in the rare circumstance of a client wanting something special you are able to contribute to, and supplement, the budget. Wines and other alcoholic drinks are not included but tea/coffee is included.

I am a single traveller. Is it possible to share a room? Why must I pay a single supplement?

We do not “match up” single travellers, because we find that in a small group scenario this does not work. And it is very unlikely that another single traveller on the same tour will have a similar request. All hotels will charge extra for a single room, even though this might be smaller than a double room, sometimes with a smaller bed, though in some hotels the single traveller will have a double room for their own use.

What sort of vehicle do we travel in?

You'll be travelling in our comfortable 16-seat Mercedes Sprinter mini-coaches, or 7 or 9-seater Mercedes Vitos, depending on the numbers on a tour. All seats have seatbelts and all seats are forward facing. Luggage is stored in a rear compartment. All vehicles are air-conditioned or with forced air vents and PA systems. The coaches may vary in Europe when we have to hire in the coach, however, they will always be comfortable mini-coaches.

How many people will be on my tour?

The maximum number we carry is 16 and the minimum 4. Your guide will usually implement a daily seat rotation exercise on the vehicle so you can get to know your fellow travellers better and see from a different perspective each day.

What meals are included?

Delicious breakfasts are included daily – English, Welsh, Scottish or Irish breakfasts in the UK and Ireland and European breakfast in mainland Europe. We also include some dinners, either in the hotel or in a local restaurant. We ensure that you have some free evenings for you to explore the local cuisine. One thing to remember, dinner times in Europe are likely to be later than you might be used to, 7.30 at the earliest and often later in France, Italy and Spain. In Europe dinner is a leisurely experience!

How much walking on a tour?

In cities, walking tours are offered by your guide. On European mainland tours there is considerable walking as many historic cities prohibit motorised transport and we have to park some distance out of the centre. On most tours there are opportunities for some extended walking, often from the accommodations we use.

Am I expected to leave gratuities?

It is common in the UK & Europe to leave a small gratuity in restaurants and cafes if you have received good service (typically 10% on top of the bill). It would also be usual to give your tour guide a tip at the end of the tour if he/she has done a good job. The amount is entirely at your discretion, and is not mandatory, but it is always much appreciated.

Can you explain what a driver/guide companion is?

Our well-educated and knowledgeable guides, from all backgrounds and walks of life, have all in addition passed a stringent government test allowing them to drive our vehicles and conduct tours. The small nature of our groups means that he/she becomes your travelling companion rather than just a tour guide, which makes for a much more rewarding experience. On some tours in mainland Europe (e.g. Italy and Spain) we will often use a driver in addition to a guide as this makes for better operation of the tour in these particular areas.

Where can I find out more information on Back-Roads?

We have a dedicated section on our website providing more detailed information on Back-Roads Tours including FAQ's on what you need to know before, during and after your travel; as well as information on their touring style, and a comprehensive search facility to enable you to easily find more of their tours. Read more> (NB: This link will take you away from this tour itinerary page).

Arrival & Departure Information

Please note most tours start at 08:30am on Day 1 of your tour or at 6pm. If departing in the morning, we advise you stay in the hotel the previous night so you are ready to meet your guide in the morning. If your tour commences in the evening, you may not require pre-tour accommodation and instead arrive during the day at your leisure. Please check your itinerary. Most tours complete early evening. We cannot usually drop you off at the airport, so we suggest you book your flights departing the following day of the tour to ensure you do not miss your flights due to unforeseen circumstances.

Terms & Conditions:

Yep, all the boring small print! We still recommend you read it though, as no one likes surprises!

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There are currently no tour departures available for this tour - either it's the end of the season, or this tour itinerary has been changed and will no longer continue. Feel free to contact us for information about when next seasons dates will be released or click to view general brochure release dates for all destinations.