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SCOTLAND’S FAMOUS ROUTE 500, NORTHWEST PASSAGE AND ORKNEYS

SCOTLAND’S FAMOUS ROUTE 500, NORTHWEST PASSAGE AND ORKNEYS

Wednesday 2 to Thursday 10 June 2021

  • 9 Days £790
  • Single supplement £155
  • Holiday insurance £29

A most extraordinary holiday visiting Scotland’s North West coastline and islands. This trip of a lifetime skirts the very top of the United Kingdom on the famous Route 500 as it snakes along the coast passing fairy-tale castles, deserted beaches and ancient ruins. A region so sparsely populated the lifestyle and culture has little changed in generations. The highlight of the week is a marvellous guided tour of the Orkney Isles.


WEDNESDAY: Following our morning departure we travel north to our overnight hotel in the Glasgow area.

THURSDAY: Travel through the changing Scottish scenery, we travel along the shoreline of Loch Lomond ‘The Queen of Lochs’ to then drive through Glencoe over the mountain passes to Fort William. You will lose count of the number of lochs we travel past, enjoy a quick stop at Eilean Donan Castle, one of Scotland’s most photographed castles before arriving at Skye and the Dunollie Hotel for a two-night stay.

FRIDAY:  A full day on Skye, first to the capital of Portree, fringed by high ground and cliffs, where the harbour continues to be used by fishing boats. We cross the island to the 800-year-old Dunvegan Castle and Gardens – the stronghold of the Macleod Clan and Scotland’s longest inhabited castle. Returning along the coast road with views of the Cuillins, the most impressive mountain range in the UK.

SATURDAY: We depart Skye via the bridge to arrive at Kyle. Drive along Loch Carron to Gairloch, a pretty fishing village. Continue along the total length of Loch Maree, without doubt, one of Scotland’s bonniest of lochs before we snake our way along cliffs, beaches, inlets and a coastline dotted with islands before arriving into the picture-perfect harbour town of Ullapool and the Royal Hotel for our overnight stay.

SUNDAY: Travelling north, the extraordinary beauty unfolds before you. Mile upon mile of crumbling cliffs, sheer rocky headlands and sheltered bays with white deserted beaches. See/hear huge seabird colonies clustered in clefts on remote stacks, seals also bob around in the surf offshore. Arrive at Durness, the most north-westerly village on mainland Britain. Lunch included at the Smoo Cave Hotel.  Continue to travel east along the northern coastline, entering the least populated area in the UK, passing sea lochs and villages before reaching the picturesque fishing village of Caithness and the Castletown Hotel, for our two-night stay.

MONDAY: We travel past Scotland’s most northern mainland castle, Castle of Mey, which was owned and frequently visited by the late Queen Mother, we see the Orkney’s rise from the North Sea.  At John O’Groats we board the ferry as foot passengers for the 40-minute ferry crossing over the Pentland Firth to begin a magical guided tour of the Orkney Island. A private coach with driver/guide awaits to take you across the Churchill Barriers, visiting Scara Brae, Ring of Brodgar, standing stones, Italian Chapel and much more.  We return on the ferry back to John O’Groats.

TUESDAY: Another day which is sure not to disappoint you, travel by way of Wick and the coastal road to historic Helmsdale and then various vantage points such as the white sands at Brora, Dunrobin Castle to the Highland capital of Inverness for some free time. Continue south climbing the Drumochter Pass then by way of Glen Garry, Bridge of Tilt and Pitlochry to our overnight stay in the Perthshire area.

WEDNESDAY: We have a leisurely departure today and travel south through Scotland, crossing the border into England and our hotel in the Lancashire area.

THURSDAY: Travel south to arrive home late afternoon/early evening.


Please Note: Admissions and fares are not included in the price unless stated below.


DUNOLLIE HOTEL, BROADFORD, SKYE***

The Dunollie Hotel is set by the serene waterside of Broadford Bay, at the foot of the mountains that lead to the famous Cuillin Hills. With 84 en suite bedrooms, a bar and a restaurant, it is perfectly placed to explore an area rich in history. Many of the bedrooms offer spectacular views across Broadford Bay and the islands of Pabay and Scalpay, they are equipped with a television, telephone and tea/coffee making facilities. There is no lift.

ROYAL HOTEL, ULLAPOOL***

Located on the edge of the village with breath-taking views across Loch Broom and the surrounding Highlands. All 55 bedrooms are en-suite with a television and tea/coffee making facilities. No lift but ground floor rooms available.

CASTLETOWN HOTEL, CAITHNESS, THURSO**

Nestled in the curve of Dunnet Bay, within the picturesque fishing village of Castletown, this family-run hotel is perfect for exploring Caithness, offering quality, affordable accommodation with free Wi-Fi and parking. There are 24 en-suite bedrooms with television, hairdryer and tea/coffee making facilities. There is no lift.


INCLUDED IN THE PRICE

Executive coach travel, 8 night’s dinner, bed and breakfast, Orkney Isle ferry and guided tour, lunch at Smoo Cave Hotel, entry to Dunvegan Castle and gardens and excursion programme

 

KENT’S GARDENS, VINES AND RAILWAY LINES

KENT’S GARDENS, VINES AND RAILWAY LINES

Sunday 6 to Thursday 10 June 2021

  • 5 Days £420
  • Single supplement £96
  • Holiday insurance £23

Discover fine gardens, historical towns, imposing castles, a glorious coastline and rolling meadows on this Garden of England tour. A packed itinerary that includes a journey on a vintage steam train, a visit to what is reported to be the loveliest castle in the world’, all washed down with a tour and tastings of fine English wines.


SUNDAY: After a morning departure we travel through the English countryside to arrive at the Best Western Clifton Hotel, Folkestone for our four-night stay.

MONDAY: We travel to the cathedral city of Canterbury, dating back to 597AD, with its Roman walls encircling its medieval centre of cobbled streets and timber-framed houses. We next visit the 900-year-old Leeds Castle, described as the loveliest castle in the world. Explore the castle with its labyrinth of rooms and 500 acres of parkland and formal gardens.

TUESDAY: After breakfast, we take a gentle drive across the rolling Kent countryside to Bodiam Station where our steam train ‘The Jewel of the Weald’ will be waiting in the shadows of the Mighty Bodiam Castle. Enjoy a 50-minute journey through the Rother Valley to arrive at Tenterden. Here we take the small journey to Great Dixter, a historic Tudor house, complete with a Great Hall dating back to the 15th century. It’s surrounding gardens are a place for pilgrimage for horticulturalists from across the world.

WEDNESDAY: Our first visit is to Sissinghurst – one of the most famous and extensive English gardens arranged into ten areas. As you walk through each distinctly different ‘room’ another area of the garden is discovered. Main areas include the Rose Garden, Lime Walk, White Garden and the colourful south Cottage Garden. After lunch, we make our way to the award-winning Hush Heath Winery, with 400 acres of manicured vineyards and apple orchards. Enjoy a guided tour of the estate followed by wine tasting before heading back to our hotel.

THURSDAY: We depart after our breakfast and travel home for arrival late afternoon/early evening.


Please Note: Admissions and fares are not included in the price unless stated below. On all railway excursions, for operational reasons on the day of travel, steam trains may be replaced by a diesel locomotive


BEST WESTERN CLIFTON HOTEL, FOLKESTONE***

Discover the luxury of being at one of the most premium hotels in Folkestone, primarily known for its scenic views and grand style, you will find everything you need at the Clifton Hotel. Whether you wish to relax in utmost style and comfort in your room or enjoy an afternoon coffee in the Costa lounge, sip a cocktail in the Ocean Bleu Bar or indulge in some fabulous food at the new Marco Pierre White Steakhouse Bar & Grill they can take care of all your needs and desires. Some bedrooms offer a sea view or garden view all are en-suite with television, radio, telephone and tea/coffee making facilities. This hotel has free Wi-Fi and a lift.


INCLUDED IN THE PRICE

Executive coach travel, 4 night’s dinner, bed and breakfast, entry to Leeds Castle and Gardens, entry to Sissinghurst Gardens, entry to Great Dixter House and Gardens, single journey on Tenterden steam railway, vineyard tour with wine tasting and excursion programme.

 

BEAUTIFUL BOURNEMOUTH WITH MOTTISFONT ROSE GARDEN

BEAUTIFUL BOURNEMOUTH WITH MOTTISFONT ROSE GARDEN

Monday 14 to Friday 18 June 2021

  • 5 Days £350
  • No single supplement on allocated singles
  • Sea View £80 per person
  • Holiday insurance £23

Summer by the sea! Enjoy the golden sands accredited with numerous Green Flag Awards, Gold Accreditation from Britain in Bloom and European Entente Floral Awards – Bournemouth can be classed as a slice of floral paradise with 2,000 acres of Victorian Gardens and parkland to explore. Walk along the golden sands or take a stroll along the Pier with ice cream or simply watch the sunset. Bournemouth has an abundance of activities for you to enjoy from land trains to galleries, tea rooms and cafes, amusements, arcades and shops, or perhaps you simply prefer to relax in a deck chair with your toes in the sand. Mottisfont Rose Garden are walled gardens, filled with heavenly fragrance and colour from thousands of roses in early summer. Home to the National Collection of pre-1900 old-fashioned roses, which reach their peak in June. Over five hundred varieties put on an annual display which draws visitors from all over the world.


MONDAY: This morning we depart the West Country and travel to the South Coast and Bournemouth for our four-night stay at the Ocean Beach Hotel and Spa.

EXCURSION PROGRAMME:

  • We start with a morning stop in Christchurch followed by a drive through the New Forest National Park taking in quaint villages Brockenhurst with its olde-worlde charm and Lyndhurst.
  • This morning we head to Wimborne Minster, an attractive market town with a wonderful mix of high-quality modern stores and charming independent boutiques sat side by side in hidden courtyards and pedestrianised squares. Continue to the Isle of Purbeck and to Swanage. Why not take a trip on the Swanage Railway, which operates a steam train service to the picturesque village of Corfe. Perhaps visit the castle ruins a National Trust attraction, which has played through over 1000 years of turbulent history and dominates the Corfe skyline.
  • A visit to National Trust’s Mottisfont Gardens to see the amazing Roses – ‘A Gardeners Dream’ return to Bournemouth for some free time.

FRIDAY: We depart after breakfast and travel to Dorchester. Depart after lunch arriving back to our home towns for late afternoon/early evening.

Please Note: Admissions and fares are not included in the price unless stated below.


OCEAN BEACH HOTEL AND SPA, BOURNEMOUTH ***

Formerly known as the Cliffeside, located directly on the seafront, atop the prestigious East Cliff of Bournemouth this contemporary hotel offers some of the best views in town. The Ocean Beach Hotel & Spa is only a minutes’ walk from seven miles of award-winning sandy beaches and close to the town centre, gardens and vibrant café society of Bournemouth. The 64 en-suite bedrooms feature a telephone, television, hairdryer and tea/coffee making facilities. The Spa is one of the best in Bournemouth and all Oceana Guests have access to Sister hotels amenities such as indoor and outdoor swimming pools. There is a lift.

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE

Executive coach travel, 4 night’s dinner, bed and breakfast, entertainment during your stay and excursion programme.

 

HARROGATE AND YORKSHIRE DALES BY MOUNTAIN GOAT

HARROGATE AND YORKSHIRE DALES BY MOUNTAIN GOAT

Monday 21 to Friday 25 June 2021

  • 5 Days £395
  • Single supplement £64
  • Holiday insurance £23

Harrogate is an English spa town that exudes a genteel calm and elegance. The town is adorned by fine Victorian and Edwardian architecture including an ornate Royal Pump room. It boasts a number of sophisticated cafés and restaurants, as well as a tasteful range of shops. Dignified buildings and hotels are complemented by the modern International Centre in the middle of town with its exhibition halls and theatre. Harrogate’s refined air is enhanced by beautiful floral displays found amongst its botanical gardens and spacious parks. The town is situated in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales, renowned for its outstanding natural beauty


MONDAY: We depart the South West and travel north to arrive in Harrogate and the Cairn Hotel for our four-night stay.

EXCURSION PROGRAMME:

  • Our day will start in Thirsk, famous for the World of James Herriot and the famous vet’s surgery. Onto Ripon with its magnificent Cathedral before returning via Pateley Bridge to Harrogate.
  • A day with a difference, you will be collected by a Mountain Goat mini-bus to enjoy a scenic day over the Yorkshire Dales, you will travel over some roads that our big coach cannot access. Your day will take in Leyburn, Richmond, Hawes, Wensleydale Creamery, Aysgarth Falls and Bolton Abbey with some spectacular viewpoints.
  • Today we travel first to Skipton. with immense history, a rich culture, independent shops, food & drink places galore, a famous market, an iconic castle, stunning countryside and, perhaps most of all, friendly, fiercely proud and passionate Yorkshire people. Onto the Bronte town of Haworth, if you are fans of the Brontë sisters and want to learn more then a visit to the Brontë Parsonage is a must. If the timings permit, why not take a trip on the railway to Keighley.

FRIDAY: We depart our hotel and travel south back home for arrival late afternoon/early evening.


Please Note: Admissions and fares are not included in the price unless stated below.


CAIRN HOTEL, HARROGATE ***

The Cairn Hotel was built during Harrogate’s period as a Spa Town when people came from far and wide to take in the waters. Carefully modernised, grand original features still welcome you to this charming Victorian hotel. The Cairn Hotel is located only a short five-minute walk from the town and stands on four acres of grounds. The bedrooms are all en-suite and are equipped with tea/coffee making facilities, television and telephone. There is a lift.


INCLUDED IN THE PRICE

Executive coach travel, 4 night’s dinner, bed and breakfast, Mountain Goat day trip and excursion programme.