10 days in England

Jul 23rd, 2014, 12:28 PM
  #1  
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10 days in England

We are planning a longish trip to Europe with about 10 days in England next spring We would like to spend a few days in London. Other random places on our wish list to see are Stonehenge, Oxford, Stratford Upon Avon and Liverpool (DH is a Beatles fan). If you had 10 days, how would you organize it? Stay in 1 place and day trip to places like Oxford? I read over and over here that people are trying to do too much in a short amount of time so hopefully we are not falling into that trap.
Nosy is offline  
Jul 23rd, 2014, 01:34 PM
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Based on your wish list, London.

Day trips.

That easy.

Even Liverpool is a (longish but doable) day trip because it's 2h15 each way by train.

Entirely certain there is Beatle-alia in and around London . . . and I was right: http://www.beatlesinlondon.com/

And Abbey Road studios are . . . in London.
BigRuss is offline  
Jul 23rd, 2014, 01:42 PM
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Hi NOSY,

If you check VIATOR, you will find many day trips from London that combine 2 or more stops at those popular outlying places. Many folks on this board will insist that you can do them independently by train for less money. Probably true, but I like the convenience of an organized group.

The problem is deciding which ones!
latedaytraveler is offline  
Jul 23rd, 2014, 02:30 PM
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If you check out some companies that offer tours you can see how they group the sights. Example-our first trip to London I wanted to see Stonehenge. Lots will pooh pooh that idea as so many will say negative things about it. I found a tour that had our small group at Stonehenge before it officially opened for visitors. We had the place to ourselves and were allowed to actually get up close to the stones. Back then-2008-there were ropes/barriers around so you could only get so close. That didn't apply to our group. We also had time in Bath and had breakfast at a charming little village-Lacock. This was the private view tour with Viator. www.viator.com/stonehenge

You could probably do some on your own too.

www.thetrainline.com
www.virgintrains.co.uk
www.nationalrail.co.uk

http://gouk.about.com

www.evanevanstours.co.uk
http://www.grayline.com/things-to-do...kingdom/london
chris45ny is offline  
Jul 23rd, 2014, 02:41 PM
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Thanks, I will check out those links. Where in London would be most convenient to train departures if we go the train route vs. private tours? I will look into the private tours, too. I'm looking for least hassle with 3 kids, so private tours might be a good option, depending on how pricey they are.
Nosy is offline  
Jul 23rd, 2014, 02:50 PM
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>>Where in London would be most convenient to train departures if we go the train route vs. private tours?<<

There are many trains stations in central London -- and each serves specific areas of the UK. So for instance trains to Liverpool leave from a different station than trains to Salisbury/Stonehenge, and yet other stations serve Stratford-upon-Avon. So no one neighborhood is close to all the stations you will use. Same w/ coach tours -- many leave from Victoria Coach station, but others pick up at various hotels. Private tours generally pick you up.

The public transport is so good you can get anywhere in central London from anywhere in central London quite easily.

More important would be - what is your budget>
janisj is online now  
Jul 23rd, 2014, 03:03 PM
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Yes as janis explains London has no central train station but several main stations for different areas. But trains are very frequent and IME easy to use (though there may be a bit of a lanugage problem in the Liverpuddle area!)

For lots of good info on English trains check out www.seat61.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com. www.nationalrail.co.uk has all the schedules and possible discounts on longer trips (but often with severe restrictions on changing, no departures before say 9:30 am and changes and refunds. If going to all those day trip destinations the Days Out of London Pass could be as cheap as a series of discounted tickets and let you hop any train anytime. It also includes two trains transfers from Gatwick, Heathrow or Stansted airports on the airport express trains serving those airports.

Trains of course don't go to Stonehenge but to Salisbury from whose train station there are shuttle buses to the famous ring of stones.
PalenQ is online now  
Jul 23rd, 2014, 05:19 PM
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London has multiple train stations and the trains to each part of the country usually depart from only 1 or 2 of them.

Don't play that near train station game - pick a hotel in a central location for London sights and be sure you are no more than a couple of blocks from a tube station.
nytraveler is offline  
Jul 24th, 2014, 05:55 AM
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Stratford Upon Avon and Liverpool>

You could also stay in the Stratford area -like at Leamington Spa or some other place and also see famous Warwick Castle, one of the finest and most interesting in England and use it as a base for Stratford and Liverpool, eliminating a few hours on the train each day if commuting from London.

Bath is not on your list but to me it is the prettiest large city in England and just 90 minutes or so by train from London (Days Out of London pass valid - or maybe that pass is called The London Plus Pass - they keep changing the name?)
PalenQ is online now  
Jul 24th, 2014, 06:44 AM
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My husband and I took a small group tour (16 people max) to Stonehenge, Bath, and Windsor from London via International Friends (http://www.internationalfriends.co.uk/) and we really enjoyed it. My understanding is that Stonehenge is not on the train line, and I didn't want to deal with bus timing - and our tour guide was great.
margotheangel is offline  
Jul 24th, 2014, 07:53 AM
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PalenQ, I'd love to see Bath as well, but thought I would be doing too much. Will definitely add it in if there's time.
Nosy is offline  
Jul 24th, 2014, 08:10 AM
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Getting about on UK public transport is very easy, you use http://www.transportdirect.info/Web2...epeatingloop=Y and work on the basis that buses nearly always leave on time or late.
bilboburgler is offline  
Jul 24th, 2014, 08:43 AM
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>>My understanding is that Stonehenge is not on the train line, and I didn't want to deal with bus timing<<

No 'dealing with' required. Stonehenge is very near Salisbury and the buses to the stones leave from the train station every half hour.
janisj is online now  
Jul 24th, 2014, 09:16 AM
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Nosy,
I have travelled thru Britain 14 times from 1986-2009. The ONLY time I took a tour or required assistance was a 3 day trip/tour of Paris. Many sights have easy rail travel to get you where you want to go. Oh I did once take a half day tour to Hever Castle only because I do not enjoy driving, especially on a different side of the road. All this was before the advent of the invaluable internet. I would consider a day tour only if it was a time/convenience/cost issue such as Stratford. I have visited all the locations mentioned in these posts using public transport. You may want to split you stay partly centered in London and part in the center of other sights more than 4 hrs travel from London. Such as Liverpool for mid=England sight seeing. Oh look into 'London Pass', 'Heritage Pass’, ‘British Rail' and the underground 'Visitor travel Card' for savings on sights and travel. Feel free to contact me with and questions you might have at [email protected]
johnlarocknyc is offline  
Jul 24th, 2014, 09:35 AM
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The London Pass is a rip off - and if you maybe mean the Great British Heritage Pass, it no longer exists, was discontinued several years ago.

On the other hand IF you mean a pass sold by English Heritage . . . it is called the Overseas Visitor Pass and is really only useful for those spending a week or more outside of London (the shortest pas they sell is 9 days).
janisj is online now  
Jul 24th, 2014, 09:40 AM
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Do the 2 for 1 offers ever extend beyond London?
PalenQ is online now  
Jul 24th, 2014, 11:35 AM
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>>Do the 2 for 1 offers ever extend beyond London?<<

Yes of course they do, all over the country in fact. Just look at the range of places on http://www.daysoutguide.co.uk/
Gordon_R is offline  
Jul 24th, 2014, 11:53 AM
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No to the London Pass.

But since you're a "we" hit Gordon's link for the 2for1 passes. Hit my name and there are posts (many) where I've detailed how to get the 2for1 discounts.
BigRuss is offline  
Jul 24th, 2014, 12:26 PM
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John LA welcome to Fodors
bilboburgler is offline  
Jul 25th, 2014, 09:19 AM
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For the OP 2 for 1 is valid I believe only with a rail ticket to that destination - please correct me if wrong.
PalenQ is online now  

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