PRIVATE CRUISE STOPOVER TOURS – PRICES & PRACTICAL INFORMATION

  • Description: day-tours from Dover or Southampton by private vehicle conducted by accredited driver-guide.
  • Number of persons: Up to 7.
  • Typical timings: 8-hour tours – can be tailored to suit arrivals/departures.
  • Pick-up/drop-off: Dover or Southampton cruise terminals or nearby hotels.
  • Price: 1-2 passengers = £675.00*;  3-4 passengers = £720.00*; 5-7 passengers = £765.00*.
    *Not including entry fees. For some attractions it may be necessary for us to book standard tickets in advance.

CANTERBURY & DOVER TOUR (FROM DOVER CRUISE TERMINAL)
Your driver-guide will pick-you up from the Dover cruise terminal or nearby hotel at the specified time. Then, in Kent, the garden of England, we visit both the religious heart and the military key to the country.

CANTERBURY & CHAUCER
Almost 850 years ago, the Christian world was rocked by a shocking assassination. On the King’s authority, the Archbishop was murdered in Canterbury Cathedral. We take a personally guided tour of this awe-inspiring medieval masterpiece and visit the site of Beckett’s murder. In the late 14th century, Geoffrey Chaucer wrote the story of a group of pilgrims who set out from London to visit the shrine of Thomas Beckett. What follows is a rip-roaring and frankly rude collection of tales. We discuss this classic as we walk through this ancient town.

LUNCH
Your driver-guide will suggest appropriate lunch options on the day. Perhaps a village tea-room, riverside restaurant or traditional pub. Alternatively, you may want to bring a pre-packed lunch or just grab a sandwich. It’s your tour, it’s your choice. (Note: the tour price does not include food or refreshments).

DOVER
Dover is England’s right foot and has been the country’s front line since time immemorial. Julius Caesar was thwarted here and it became the main fortification in the Saxon shore defences. We will, of course, visit the famed White Cliffs of Dover made legendary in song.

DOVER CASTLE
A personally guided tour of the original castle built by the Normans. King Henry II had it rebuilt as a ‘hospitality suite’ for foreign dignitaries visiting Thomas Beckett’s shrine. In later centuries, it was used as a defence against Napoleon and Hitler with a warren of tunnels underneath.

CHARTWELL & HEVER CASTLE TOUR (FROM DOVER CRUISE TERMINAL)
Your driver-guide will pick-you up from the Dover cruise terminal or nearby hotel at the specified time. Then, in Kent, the garden of England, we visit the residences of two absolute giants of British history: Winston Churchill & Anne Boleyn.

CHURCHILL & CHARTWELL
Winston Spencer Churchill was recently voted greatest Briton of all time. He had a great historical impact, not just with his leadership during World War II, but right across the 20th century. As he battled to save civilization from the clutches of evil, how did he relax? Here’s how: the gardening, plants, trees, buildings, waters and the complete landscape here are the vision of the great man. The house interior is also fascinating, and a guided tour uncovers his prolific work-rate.  No mean artist, either, and we will view his famous paintings.

LUNCH
Your driver-guide will suggest appropriate lunch options on the day. Perhaps a village tea-room, riverside restaurant or traditional pub. Alternatively, you may want to bring a pre-packed lunch or just grab a sandwich. It’s your tour, it’s your choice. (Note: the tour price does not include food or refreshments).

HEVER CASTLE & THE BOLEYN GIRL
Anne Boleyn, daughter of the scheming diplomat Thomas Boleyn, became the apple of Henry VIII’s roving eye. Her story and her fate, at the chopping block, changed English history forever. We will visit the Boleyn family tomb in the ancient church of St Peter’s, close to the family home. A guided tour of Anne’s childhood home which later became the home of Henry’s estranged fourth wife Anne of Cleves. It contains many Tudor artefacts and is set in magnificent grounds. In the 20th century, it was bought and partly refurbished by the American millionaire William Waldorf Astor.

LEEDS CASTLE & SISSINGHURST GARDENS TOUR (FROM DOVER CRUISE TERMINAL)
Your driver-guide will pick-you up from the Dover cruise terminal or nearby hotel at the specified time. Then, in Kent, the garden of England, we visit Leeds Castle, an idyllic Arthurian Camelot dating back to the 11th century and often cited as the most beautiful castle in England.

LEEDS CASTLE
A number of queens have used Leeds Castle as a private retreat. Henry VIII commissioned many building works for his first wife Katherine of Aragon and then used it to ‘entertain’ his new love Anne Boleyn. In the early 20th century it was bought by an heiress who hosted a number of celebrity parties here in the 1930s. The grounds alone are breathtaking.

LUNCH
Your driver-guide will suggest appropriate lunch options on the day. Perhaps a village tea-room, riverside restaurant or traditional pub. Alternatively, you may want to bring a pre-packed lunch or just grab a sandwich. It’s your tour, it’s your choice. (Note: the tour price does not include food or refreshments).

SISSINGHURST GARDENS
Next, after a pleasant drive through the Kent countryside, we make the short hop to Sissinghurst, a six-acre site described by some as the epitome of the English country garden, and according to many the most inspirational garden in the land. Brought in the 1930s by the controversial aristocratic writer Vita Sackville-West and her politician husband Harold Nicholson, it was turned into a designer playground, with ten garden rooms and an architectural layout. Also contains the largest herb garden in England. Timed entry tickets demonstrate its popularity with passionate gardeners.

STONEHENGE & SALISBURY TOUR (FROM SOUTHAMPTON CRUISE TERMINAL)
Your driver-guide will pick-you up from the Southampton cruise terminal or nearby hotel at the specified time. Then, after a pleasant drive through the picturesque Wessex countryside, we embark on a personally guided tour of the mysterious World Heritage site of Stonehenge.

STONEHENGE
An ancient megalithic structure older than the pyramids of Egypt, and a rare surviving monument of the pre-historic world. Some have a deep fascination with this place, and wonder about its meaning. We reflect on the biggest mysteries surrounding Stonehenge. Those not so swayed by the stones’ magical charms are left pondering the biggest mystery of all – how on Earth did they get there?

LUNCH
Your driver-guide will suggest appropriate lunch options on the day. Perhaps a village tea-room, riverside restaurant or traditional pub. Alternatively, you may want to bring a pre-packed lunch or just grab a sandwich. It’s your tour, it’s your choice. (Note: the tour price does not include food or refreshments).

SALISBURY
Once a Roman garrison, Salisbury is now a thriving market town. In its centre is the stunning Salisbury Cathedral, the tallest medieval building in the world. It contains an original copy of the Magna Carta, the world’s earliest surviving written constitution. The cathedral’s environs were described by the writer Bill Bryson as the most beautiful place in England. Certainly, both Turner and Constable found it an inspiration for their paintings. The town was the setting for Thomas Hardy’s Melchester and Anthony Trollope’s Barchester. Close-by is the former site of Salisbury: the deserted iron-age hill-fort of Old Sarum.  Well worth a visit with spectacular views of the ‘new’ town that replaced it.

JANE AUSTEN’S HAMPSHIRE (FROM SOUTHAMPTON CRUISE TERMINAL)
Your driver-guide will pick-you up from the Southampton cruise terminal or nearby hotel at the specified time. Then, we embark on a pleasant drive through Austen’s beloved county of Hampshire countryside, We cannot promise a chance meeting with a modern-day Darcy, but we can promise an enjoyable day out. Active from 1800-1816, Jane Austen only completed 6 novels before being cruelly stuck down by illness in her early 40s. However, the romantic and humorous nature of her works ensured she became one of the most widely-read female authors in English literature.

STEVENTON & WINCHESTER
The Hampshire village of Steventon is the birth-place of Austen, and where she spent her first 25 years. Here she drafted Pride & Prejudice, Northanger Abbey and Sense & Sensibility. The 12th cent parish church has changed little since Jane attended and contains memorials to the Austen family. The historic city of Winchester appeared as a movie location for the film version of Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.  We will see the house where Austen lived during the last months of her terminal illness, and take a private tour of Winchester Cathedral, her final resting place.

LUNCH
Your driver-guide will suggest appropriate lunch options on the day. Perhaps a village tea-room, riverside restaurant or traditional pub. Alternatively, you may want to bring a pre-packed lunch or just grab a sandwich. It’s your tour, it’s your choice. (Note: the tour price does not include food or refreshments).

CHAWTON
Finally, we take a guided tour of the 17th century house where Austen spent the productive part of her writing career. Chawton Cottage is now a small private museum and has been welcoming visiting Austen fans since as far back as 1947. We will also view the manor house once owned by her brother.

A DAY IN PORTSMOUTH (FROM SOUTHAMPTON CRUISE TERMINAL)
Your driver-guide will pick-you up from the Southampton cruise terminal or nearby hotel at the specified time. Then we move onto explore Portsmouth, located on Portsea Island on the south coast. It is the most densely populated city in the UK and surrounded by water. Not surprisingly, it has been a significant naval port for centuries.

HISTORIC DOCKS
Portsmouth is home to the world’s oldest dry dock where many of the Royal Navy’s most famous fighting ships can be visited. Your ticket into the dockyard entitles you entry to all museums and displays within the precincts, as well as a boat trip round the historic harbour, which features the very latest high-tech additions to the British Navy. This really is an amazing experience and the tour is especially recommended for ‘the chaps’. It was Henry VIII who began the work to build the most powerful navy in world. Here we can see his flagship, the Mary Rose, which sank in neighbouring waters during a battle in 1545 and was not seen again until it was famously raised from the seabed in 1982. For the first time since, it is on exhibition without the need for the continuous preservation spray required to wash out the wood. Also on display is the 19,000 objects found with her, the best collection of everyday objects from Tudor England.

LUNCH
Your driver-guide will suggest appropriate lunch options on the day. Perhaps a restaurant or traditional pub. Alternatively, you may want to bring a pre-packed lunch or just grab a sandwich. It’s your tour, it’s your choice. (Note: the tour price does not include food or refreshments).

VICTORY & WARRIOR
Moving onto a couple of centuries, we can visit Admiral Nelson’s remarkably preserved flagship HMS Victory. Get below-deck to see how this elegant wooden dame morphed into a fearsome she-devil when the order came to ‘Beat to Quarters.’ This is the ship on which the Nelson was shot during the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805, and you can visit the scene of this drama on board.  The famous sea-warrior’s life, actions, and the Battle of Trafalgar itself are discussed as we visit the museum nearby which features the actual sail from the Victory and a number of other objects related to this time. We can also hop on board the awesome HMS Warrior, which, when completed in 1861, was the largest, fastest, most heavily-armoured warship the world had ever seen. A natural deterrent to all-comers which ensured Britain’s mastery of the ocean waves for the rest of the 19th century.