Day tour to Dover (without Leeds?)

Old May 24th, 2005, 11:17 AM
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Day tour to Dover (without Leeds?)

I have never understood why every day trip to Dover/Cantebury includes Leeds -- which is 4 hours in the opposite direction from London.

I am starting my vacation in Leeds, and ending it in London -- does anyone know of a reasonably priced Dover/Cantebury day tour that DOESN'T include Leeds?

Searching Fodor's and Google hasn't helped. London.Walks has one, but only one, in September

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Old May 24th, 2005, 12:05 PM
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Because Leeds Castle is near Maidstone in Kent, about 2/3 of the way from London to Dover.
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Old May 24th, 2005, 12:32 PM
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So Leeds castle isn't in Leeds? I'm so confused!!!!

That would explain it then!
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Old May 24th, 2005, 10:27 PM
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I work in Leeds. It's in West Yorkshire, a big industrial city, many attractions (best shopping outside London) but it doesn't have a Castle!
As the previous poster pointed out, Leeds Castle is near Maidstone and nowhere near the city of Leeds.
Don't worry about the confusion - I remember seeing any article on the local news a few years ago showing a commemorative plate for the city of Leeds, showing local landmarks. Yes - it showed Leeds Castle! There was a HUGE kerfuffle and the plates withdrawn very quickly!
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Old May 25th, 2005, 06:33 AM
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Green Dragon,
If it's castles you want to see, I think Leeds Castle will disappoint.
Leeds Castle is a vastly remodeled country house. The grounds are beautiful though and worth a visit if you have lots of time in England to spare.

Dover Castle IS a real castle. You can get there on your own by train from London . A recent thread
noted that one of the guided tours to Dover doesn't even take you up to the castle!

You don't need to sign up for a guided tour to Canterbury either, you can easily get there on your own from London by train.

My husband and I have taken an early-ish morning train to Canterbury, visited the cathedral, walked a bit in the town, had a light lunch, then have taken an early afternoon train to Dover. The train trip from Canterbury to Dover was about 30 minutes. We took a taxi from the Dover station up to the castle grounds and made arrangements for it to pick us up at an appointed time and take us back to the station. This was a few years ago, perhaps there is a taxi rank at the castle now.

You would need to check the September opening/closing times for the Cathedral and for Dover Castle and then check train schedules from/to London.

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Old May 25th, 2005, 06:36 AM
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Now that the others have cleared up the Leeds/Leeds Castle confusion for you . . . .

I still wouldn't include Leeds Castle in a day trip from London. It has lovely grounds for sure, and if you were staying in Kent for a few days it would be worth a look 'round.

But the interior is really nothing to write home about and in a day trip from London it would cut too much time from Dover and Canterbury. Dover Castle is massive and could easily take most of a day to explore. You need at least 1/2 a day to see just the basics. And Canterbury is a wonderful place.

I would just take an early morning train from London to Dover, explore the castle until after lunch. Then take the train to Canterbury for the late afternoon. Visit the Cathedral and the medieval precincts. Maybe attend evensong. Then train back to London.

This would be a very full but doable day and be a lot cheaper than paying a tour company to rush you through Leeds/Canterbury/Dover.
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Old May 25th, 2005, 07:34 AM
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To be quite honest, I don't even think the grounds are that nice, particularly when you have available to you all the amazing gardens and estates in Kent/East Sussex. Dover is great tho' and the underground war tunnels are now one of my favourite things in England. Have fun.
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Old May 26th, 2005, 08:16 AM
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Thanks for all the help clearing up the confusion! I will definitely pass on Leeds castle -- I prefer my castles to be partly ruined and picturesque -- like Uruquart. (did I spell that right?)

I may leave Dover to another trip, though. I think I have enough in Leeds and London to keep us busy.
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Old May 26th, 2005, 08:56 AM
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June-Sep Raileurope offers a "Leeds Castle, Canterbury, Dover and Greenwich day trip for $100, including traditional English cream tea and scones at Leeds Castle - don't miss the dog collar museum! RailEurope agents: 800-441-2387.
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Old May 26th, 2005, 09:28 PM
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One of the best ruined castles in Kent is Scotney Castle - very atmospheric. You can imagine stumbling across Sleeping Beauty in amongst all the ivy and vines.

You can have a look at the Castle on the National Trust site:

Did a quick google search to see if any company includes Scotney Castle on a tour and came across this site:

Never used this company's services, but they look interesting. Give you something to think about, anyway. Have a great time on your trip.
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