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Need suggestions for drive through England!

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Aug 17th, 2013, 05:47 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 53
Need suggestions for drive through England!

Hi all,
hoping someone can help get me on the right path
I'm going to spend a few days in Ireland driving Ring of Kerry and Dingle Peninsula (probably only about 4 days- hoping that's plenty!) then planning on taking a ferry over to England to do tour of English countryside. I think i will only have 6 or 7 days to drive in England, but there's so much we want to see. and I can't prioritize!
I wanted to do a bit of a 'literary tour' to see places Jane Austen lived and wrote about as well as Shakespeare's Stratford and Wordsworth's Lake District...want to work in charming old villages and castles along the way.
So far I've been considering the following places- but unsure what's the best to do and what I really have time to do:

Arundel Castle, Pentworth house
Guildford: Chawton and Clandon Park
Bodian Castle
Rye
Leeds Castle
Bath
Stourhead
The Cotswalds-
Warwick Castle
Stratford upon Avon
Peak District- Chatsworth House and Burghley House
Lake District

Can anyone give some advice on what's doable within 6-7 days and what on my list i can skip or what i should add?
thanks so much in advance! Always appreciate Fodorites help
best,
k
Wanderfilms is offline  
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Aug 17th, 2013, 06:05 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 8,065
You'll be getting lots of advice on this one. Generally, with just 6 or 7 days I think you'll need to focus on a part of your list, for instance, the Lakes and environs in the north or the Cotswolds & Bath in the south. Choose your favorite author and concentrate on that part of the country and do it well.
MmePerdu is offline  
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Aug 17th, 2013, 07:18 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
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Onlly time for a quick comment - you'll have to do some more refining before we can really help very much. You have listed 3 weeks worth of sites spread over most of England.

Most p,aces on your list are 'worthwhile' (with the exception of Leeds Castle IME).
janisj is online now  
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Aug 17th, 2013, 07:54 PM
  #4
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
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Madame Perdu has it right.

By the way it is Bodiam Castle (with an m). And a right good 'un it is!

Looking at your itinerary before England, I would think you might be better off to find a flight from Kerry airport, rather than driving all the way across Ireland, taking a ferry and driving to your chosen areas in England. If you take your rental car with you on the ferry, it will be expensive and there may be a huge drop off fee for leaving it in another country. Furthermore, it will be a very long day.

From what airport are you flying to return to US?

I think my choice might be:

Fly from Kerry to Bristol and pick up rental car. Drive to Bath

Spend the day in Bath.

Head to Winchester. Jane Austen is buried in the north aisle of the cathedral (Gothic with longest nave in England) Charming town to walk around.

Visit Chawton Cottage where Jane Austen did most of her writing.

Drive to Rye and explore. charming town.

Bodiam Castle and Canterbury. Hastings is in this area as well.

Six days. As I recall, you could probably fit Stourhead into this itinerary.

(Leeds Castle looks beautiful in pictures, but has been turned into a business conference center.)

Or again, fly into Bristol

Two days exploring the Cotswolds

Stratford and Warwick Castle 2 days

Oxford (Tolkien and CS Lewis) and the colleges 2 days

(In this area also Coventry--Lady Godiva legend, ruined (WWII) cathedral and next to it "new" cathedral built after the war. I found the walk around the ruin very moving and was surprised to find that I did not abhor the new one. Coventry itself is a city rebuilt after the war. The Nazi air force bombed the heck out of the place one night.

You will get lots of suggestions who know these areas better than I. I just tried to group your wants in some sort of order and make a few suggestions based on memories of my trips to England.

I hope that it will be a worthwhile and enjoyable trip for you.
irishface is offline  
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Aug 18th, 2013, 05:25 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 280
Flying from Kerry Airport you will be limited to the God-awful Ryanair. Aer Lingus has various routes from Cork to England, which would be preferable IMO, and no more expensive once you've added in all the Ryanair compulsory extras.
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Aug 19th, 2013, 02:52 PM
  #6
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
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We visited Oxford, Warwick, the Peak District, Bath, Stourhead, Winchester, and Chawton in 2007 for the same reasons you mention. Here's a link to my trip report: http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...b-may-2007.cfm

You may find it helpful.

Lee Ann
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Aug 19th, 2013, 03:04 PM
  #7
ira
 
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Hi W,

We will be spending 11 days in the Peaks, Lakes and Cotswalds.

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Aug 21st, 2013, 06:11 PM
  #8
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HI, just wanted to thank you all for your help. Yes, i'll be picking up a different car rental in England and will be flying from Ireland over there. Not sure yet where i'm flying into. I'm going to digest all this info and decide what to do! Sadly i think i will be taking out the Lake District for this trip and definitely cut out a bunch of castles. I'm hoping i can get in Bath, Rye, Chawton House and the Cotswolds...
thank you again!
best,
k
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