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My Tentative 10 day Itinerary...Please Critique!!!

My Tentative 10 day Itinerary...Please Critique!!!

Nov 20th, 2002, 08:03 PM
  #1  
Len
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My Tentative 10 day Itinerary...Please Critique!!!

I know this is long but all of your suggetsions and opinions are so valuable to my trip planning. I am taking my 55 year Dad on this trip (Huge English History fans)...here goes...

March 28th
Friday--Arrive (Heathrow) 8:05 AM --Take a bus tour of London (Double decker… which is best?), Tower of London (Beefeater Tour), St. Paul’s Cathedral, Lunch at Ye Olde Chesire Cheese, British Museum or walk around The City, Dinner at a good pub or restaurant near hotel. (recommendations please?)

Saturday-- Buckingham place (Changing of Guards), the Mall, Trafalgar square, walk down Whitehall to Parliament (Big Ben), Westminster Abbey, 10 Downing Street, The Cabinet War Rooms, Lunch at The Red Lion or Sheperds’ Pub, National Portrait Gallery (We’re big history fans), Tea? Walk on one of the Thames Bridges for sunset or London eye? Dinner at Rules (Will make reservations), Wander around Convent Garden after dinner before returning to hotel.

Sunday--Explore St.James-Mayfair area starting from Picadilly Circus, St. James Palace, Spencer House, Bond Street, Harrods, Hyde Park (speakers corner), Kensington Palace etc. Lunch at Pub? (Lamb and Flag or Grenadier), Tea at Fortnum & Mason’s or The Fountain, Dinner at (suggestions please???) See a play or Jack The Ripper Tour.

Monday--Take train to York for the day, See York Minster, the town walls, and just wander through the city, Lunch at the Black Swan Pub in York, Train back to London

Tuesday--Early breakfast at hotel/check out, car service or taxi to Heathrow to pick up rental car, Drive from Heathrow to Salisbury, Tour Salisbury Cathedral and walk around town, Lunch at Haunch of Venison Pub, Stop at Old Sarum & Stonehenge on the way to Castle Combe Manor House, Dinner at Hotel or drive to nearby Lacock for dinner at little pub (???).

Wednesday--Quick stop to see village of Castle Combe before heading to Bath, Tour of Bath (Bath Abbey, The Roman Baths, The Crescent etc), Lunch at The Pump Room in Bath? Either drive to Wells/Glastonbury to explore medieval towns and eat dinner there or back to Castle Combe Manor House for dinner and relaxation.

Thursday--Early Breakfast at Hotel/ Check Out, Drive north through Cotswolds to Chipping Campden, Check in to Noel Arms in Chipping Camden, Genny from Tour Gems will pick us up and takes us on a private afternoon tour of Stratford-on-Avon and Warwick Castle, Eat lunch at the Black Swan in Stratford, Either eat dinner at Kings Feast at Warwick Castle or back to Chipping Campden for dinner at Noel Arms or The Eight Bells Inn. (recommendations???)

Friday--Genny from Tour Gems picks us up for a private tour of Cotswolds villages and sites. (Broadway, Upper and Lower Slaughter, Stow on Wold, Stanton, Sudely Castle etc.), Lunch at pub in one of these small towns (Genny’s recommendation), Dinner in Chipping Campden or nearby village, maybe Lygon Arms in Broadway.

Saturday—Morning--Wander around Chipping Campden, see St James Church, Market Hall, Silk Mill, Check out of hotel, Drive south to Windsor, maybe stopping in Woodstock to see Blenheim Palace, Either lunch in Woodstock or country pub on the way? (Suggestions???) Arrive in Windsor, check in to Sir Christopher Wren House, Walk around Windsor, see castle, Dinner at Hotel restaurant overlooking Thames or over the bridge in Eton (suggestions???)

Sunday--Drive to Heathrow, drop off rental car, Fly back to New York.


 
Nov 20th, 2002, 08:06 PM
  #2  
Len
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Oh yeah, sorry, we are staying at the Rubens-at-the-Palace in London...

 
Nov 20th, 2002, 08:18 PM
  #3  
Belinda
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Sounds really busy. Harrods is closed on Sunday.
 
Nov 20th, 2002, 09:08 PM
  #4  
forlen
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TTT
 
Nov 20th, 2002, 11:16 PM
  #5  
janis
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Len - with all the help you have gotten you seem to have over done it by at least half. Much too much almost every day. And too regimented. As already mentioned, Harrods is closed on Sunday.

There is no way you can arrive in London in the morning and get through a bus tour, the Tower, and St Pauls before lunch and the British Museum after lunch. That is more like two+ full days of sightseeing.

You can't "do" Bath in just a morning. it takes a full day or most of one.

I don't know what Genny has told you - but you really cannot see Warwick Castle AND Stratford in an afternoon.
 
Nov 20th, 2002, 11:42 PM
  #6  
OverTheHill
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Well, I'm 5 years younger than your dad, but am EXHAUSTED by your schedule. I don't know if this is your first trip to London, but you've only given yourself 3 days there, including your arrival day. It takes time to go through passport control and then get to London proper and your hotel (and maybe unpack? shower? sometime that day?) If it is your first trip to London, I would say you have too much time planned outside of the city. London is a BIG city - it takes time to get from one place to another. Slow down and enjoy a bit.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 06:46 AM
  #7  
Len
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Thanks guys! Yeah, I guess I just packed it all in to get opinions, but will pare back. Maybe I will forget the day trip to York and just spend all four days in London. I actually planned on spending most of the day in Bath and only going to the other places maybe for dinner. I really appreciate the comments. Maybe if I stay all four days in London then I can spread all I have here over 4 days in stead of 3. Thanks again...I am so pysched for this trip that I think I am overdoing everything!
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 06:58 AM
  #8  
are you serious
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Have you ever seen National Lampoon's European Vacation? There are only 24 hours in a day. Overplanning will only result in disappointment. Slow down, you can always go back to England to see what you missed the first time.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 07:03 AM
  #9  
are you serious
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Sorry if I sound mean or discouraging. Planning is half the fun of any trip but as an experienced visitor to Britain, your plans are almost unrealistic given the time constraints. Have fun planning your trip but when you arrive don't feel confined to a scheduled itinerary and don't feel bad if you missed some sights that were planned. Again, you can always return to Britain to pick up where you left off.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 07:09 AM
  #10  
Dan
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I echo the sentiment listed before about overdoing it. Remember that a lot of places don't open til 9:30 or 10. Also, consider skipping Bath, other than the Baths, it seemed to me to be more of a shopping destination.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 07:12 AM
  #11  
Sue
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Hi Len.

It never hurts to have a wish list of things one would like to do each day. However, my suggestion is that you pick just two things out of each of your daily wish lists to do each day, except the days that you arrive, pick up a car, or commute to York. On those days most of the morning will be spent just 'taking care of business' - clearing customs and settling in at your hotel; signing out the car and driving to Salibury; commuting to York and orienting yourself in the city. Just aim to do one major thing on those days.

Remember, it takes longer than you think just to find these places, buy the tickets, and just negotiate the crowds (London is splendid but there's a LOT of traffic.)Have a good trip.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 07:27 AM
  #12  
Len
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Thank you so much Sue. I need more advice like yours. Like I said I really put down everything I wanted to do, so it is in front of me when I go, knowing that I will probably only do a couple of them each day. Is the day trip to York crazy? We would love to see York but it may be too much.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 07:52 AM
  #13  
Sue
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Len

You sound so full of enthusiasm and energy, I wish I were going along with you and your Dad!

I think you will know some of the answers to these questions after you get there. I would find a daytrip to York a bit much but somehow I don't think you will. Have fun.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 09:39 AM
  #14  
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 09:40 AM
  #15  
Ric
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Changing of the guard is only on certain days in March. In November and December it is on odd days. Keep track of the schedule at the site below. You may have to change your itinerary to accomodate.

http://www.royal.gov.uk/output/page378.asp
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 09:46 AM
  #16  
David
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When I travel I have a wish list like Sue mentioned. I break it down further into what to do when the weather is good or bad. If I wake up and it's raining I look at my rainy day list.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 09:55 AM
  #17  
Gayle
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Wow! I was 55 when we went to London a couple years ago. You've absolutely worn me out! We spent 3 days there and did a boat ride on the Thames, walked through a couple large parks, lunch in a pub, dinner in a couple of different pubs, British Museum, walked through Harrolds and St. Paul's Cathedral, walked by the War Room Cabinet (but didn't go in as it was sunny out), dinner one night at a friend's, walked around Notting Hill one day, and that was pretty much it. Leave time to shower, recover from jetlag, etc. I have not seen either Warwick Castle or Salisbury Cathedral as when we drove to both towns my husband drove around each for about an hour looking for a place to park anywhere even remotely near the attraction and finally gave up. This was late September so don't tell me it was high summer tourist crowds! Stratford die take most of a day. Bath was somewhat disappointing. Your father better be in good shape! Actually, I don't mean to sound down on it all, it's great your taking him--just leave some time for spontaneity and goofing off.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 10:05 AM
  #18  
John
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Let me suggest another modification to your basic plan. Reverse the order.

Cramming all the the London sightseeing into the first three days of a week's holiday is a recipe for exhaustion. Land at Heathrow, get your car, head west on the M4 to Castle Combe (an easy drive), do your countryside thing, then end the trip in London. You'll be over your jet lag, you can edit your London itinerary to meet your energy levels or after you've been "in country" long enough to know what's going on (museum exhibits, plays, etc.) so you can plan your London days strategically, and so on.

The English countryside is a wonderful place to adapt to Britain, while a city of 8 million or so is a little on the intense side. By starting in the country you can nap or hang in a pub, walk down a path, whatever, without worrying about missing the next steps on the forced march. Relax.

 
Nov 21st, 2002, 10:06 AM
  #19  
Please
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Len, after all your earlier threads and all the good information you received, I don't see how you could have got it so wrong. I am not being mean, you did ask for constructive criticism. Your first day is totally absurd. By the time you get to your hotel you and get your bearings after flying overnight, you will be lucky to do ONE of those things. Most likely the bus tour since it is outdoors and helps with the jet lag. That means the Tower, St Pauls and the British Museum must slide to the other days. And SKIP the Changing of the Guard. Even if it does perform on the day you have it scheduled, it takes almost three hours out of your limited time. If you want to see anything you must be there more than an 90 minutes early and just stand there doing nothing. As mentioned previously, Warwick Castle by itself takes several hours for just a cursory overview. Everything in Stratford and Warwick closes at 5:30 or 6PM so there is absolutely no way you can see both (or even one) after lunch. York is amazing, but you have simply not given yourself enough days to squeeze it in.
 
Nov 21st, 2002, 10:07 AM
  #20  
Susan
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We love London and have visited the city 3 times in the last 3 years. (Always in the winter). And I am known to really pack an itinerary, but yours id definitely too full! I also note that some of our favorite places are missing - The the Victoria & Albert Museum, Greenwich, to name a few. I think that you should sit down with a good guidebook and a map and sit down to plan it out. Also, we loved Kensington Palace, but you should know that the tour through the palace takes a couple of hours and the Tower takes a couple of hours as well. I would also skip the bus tour, takes too much time and you can wander on your own. We never worried about places for lunch, we just stopped inot pubs and always had a fine meal. That way you can change your plans and not worry about having to be in a certain area at a certain time. Flexibilty is good on a trip like this! Have fun,
Susan
 

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