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Meander from Oxfordshire, through Somerset and as far south as the mainland will allow.
Some of England’s most magical locations are brought together here on an unhurried 11-day road trip, taking in the honey-coloured Cotswolds, historic Bath and Stonehenge, and the very best parts of North and South Cornwall. With some of our favourite guided experiences helping bring each location vividly to life, we tend to think this won’t be your last visit.
After the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales National Parks, the Cotswolds is the UK’s largest Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and home to golden villages, rolling rural landscape and fascinating history. Wherever you’re travelling from, we’ll provide tailormade directions to get you to your base in Chipping Campden with a minimum of fuss.
Your Accommodation in Chipping Campden
Hidden down an ancient passageway just off the village high street, your accommodation in Chipping Campden is a very special six-room guest house. Owned and run by a friendly and welcoming family, you’ll quickly understand why the place has been bestowed with many awards for the quality of its service and accommodation. While evidence of the townhouse’s 17th-century roots is everywhere, each of the rooms is luxuriously appointed, featuring the highest-quality beds and linens, and top-spec en-suite bathrooms. Breakfast here is quite an event, focusing on fresh, local and home-made, while the owners’ Mediterranean restaurant, housed in the same building, has an enviable reputation for the quality of its evening dining.
Enjoy the excellent breakfast, before setting off on the 15-minute drive to Moreton-In-Marsh railway station to meet your guide for the day. Travelling as part of a small group, you’ll spend the day discovering Cotswold highlights in the company of a friendly local, visiting evocative riverside villages, taking in glorious countryside views and more thatch than you ever thought possible. You’ll be back at Moreton by 4 pm, giving you the late afternoon and evening to explore at leisure.
A good day for taking your time on the road today, perhaps wending the long way via some more Cotswold beauty spots or calling in to Blenheim Palace, as you make your way south into Somerset and the historic city of Bath.
Your Accommodation in Bath
In a quiet corner of the city, just across the way from a peaceful park and only a moments’ walk from the city centre, your accommodation is an impressive guest house formed from a pair of substantial Victorian residences. With a distinct luxury-hotel feel throughout, each of the en-suite rooms has been treated to a recent refurb to ensure guests’ complete comfort. Breakfast is perfectly prepared to set you up for the day, while afternoon tea in the licensed bar is quite a treat.
After breakfast, you’ll be met by a terrific local guide and whisked away as part of a small group to one of the world’s most famous landmarks. Just under an hour south-east of Bath, you’ll enjoy an unhurried half-day tour with a local expert, giving you the opportunity to experience the stones and their story in a unique and immersive way.
You’ll be dropped back near your accommodation giving the afternoon to explore Bath at leisure.
A relaxing day of discovery today spent in one of our favourite cities. We’ll provide all the information you need to make the most of your time as you stroll the elegant Georgian terraces, explore the Abbey and Roman Baths, or head up the hill to Holloway for its independent shopping and galleries and breath-taking panoramic views.
A great road-trip today as you spear south-west through Somerset and onwards to Cornwall. Our favourite route takes you through Shepton Mallet, across the Blackdown Hills, rounding Exeter and eerie Dartmoor on the way to your base near the village of Camelford.
Your Accommodation in North Cornwall
In the most peaceful rural location away from the crowds, your accommodation near Camelford is a warm and welcoming family-owned guest house. Despite its rural location, you’re just 15 minutes’ drive from the coast and some of its most famous locations, including Port Isaac, Boscastle, Tintagel, Rock and Padstow.
Take the short drive to Port Isaac after breakfast, where you’ll meet a friendly and characterful local guide for an hour or so’s walking tour as part of a small group. There’s much more to this lively and historic fishing village than TV’s Doc Martin. You’ll have the rest of the day to yourself, perhaps meandering to Rock and taking the foot ferry for the short crossing to Padstow, or clambering the cliffs of Tintagel castle and taking the newly installed bridge across the 58-meter drop.
On the road again today to the south-western corner of England. It’s only 90 minutes direct, so you’ll have plenty of time to saunter, maybe along the north coast to take in Perranporth, St Agnes and Portreath on the way to the historic port of Penzance.
Your Accommodation in Penzance
Set on the hill overlooking the harbour, your accommodation in Penzance is a historic Georgian house in which the owners have created a quite wonderful place to stay. Everywhere you look there’s something to see, from the carefully chosen art to quirky architectural features both original and modern, and a richly appealing selection of mid-century modern furniture. Each of the rooms is individually styled, with feature bathrooms making your routine something of an event. A drink from the bar in one of the elegant drawing rooms or on the sea-facing terrace is a relaxing way to unwind after a day out.
Enjoy breakfast in the kitchen, prepared just the way you like it, before heading out to meet a friendly local guide for a private walk taking in highlights of fascinating Penzance. Hear stories across the centuries of pirates, smuggling and seafaring derring-do, while taking in the unique architecture of the ancient centre and harbourside.
Later, perhaps stroll out across the causeway – or take a small boat if the tide is in – to magnificent St Michael’s Mount.
One of our favourite things to do is take the 15-minute drive to Carbis Bay and board the train for the one-minute, one-stop train ride to St Ives. Here, you won’t want to miss the Tate Gallery, its golden beaches and narrow cobbled streets, or the chance to have a pint of scrumpy in a 16th-century smugglers inn.
Alternatively, meander along the coast to Mousehole, or to the cliffside Minack Theatre and Lands End itself. We’ll make sure you have all the information you need to make the most of your time.
Wherever you’re making your way to, we’ll create a tailor-made route to get you home with the minimum of fuss. And if you wish to take in the impressive biomes of the Eden Project en route, do let us know as we can assist with advance tickets.
This multi-centre English holiday includes stays in the Cotswolds and Somerset – Chipping Campden and Bath, respectively – before venturing to Cornwall, with stays in the north in Camelford, and the very south in Penzance.
£1585 per person in March, £1625 per person in April & October, £1695 per person for May to September.
This price is based on two adults sharing a double or twin room en-suite for 10 nights on a bed and breakfast basis in our selection of small hotel and guest houses. A guided tour of the Cotswolds, a guided tour to Stonehenge and a walking tour of Port Isaac are all included as part of small group, as well as a private walking tour of Penzance.
Car rental is not included, but we would be delighted to help with this any other travel arrangements; please do ask for more information.
Before your departure, you will receive personalised holiday information including full directions, recommended routes, and suggestions on places to visit depending on your interests and our local knowledge to help you get the most from your holiday.
All itineraries and room types are presented subject to availability at specific hotels.
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This holiday can be arranged from April to October.
Availability is individually checked for a hand-picked selection of smaller hotels, guest houses and other independent businesses, so please bear with us and we will respond in 1-2 working days.
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All our holiday prices include a service charge of £9 per person per night towards the costs we incur in researching, planning and designing your holiday.
We guarantee to refund this service charge if you believe that arranging your holiday through McKinlay Kidd has not met your expectations for value. All we ask is that you write to us within 7 days of your return and explain your reason for claiming the refund. This will ensure that we can improve the experience for all our future guests.
Although I was born and raised in Northern Scotland, my mum is from the south of England and this has always been a very important part of my family h...