Two Royal Palaces in one day's outing: Royal Windsor, home of the Queen, Hampton Court of Henry VIII' fame.
This almost 1, 000 year old Castle still remains Queen Elizabeth's favourite home and is where we will spend 1/2 of our day. Originally built in the 11th century by William the Conqueror upon the River Thames within a day's march from London, it was part of his protective strategy to maintain power after his conquest of England. Its now a site of great splendour where we will see the State Apartments, the St. George's Chapel with its English Perpendicular style, unique to England, Queen Mary's Doll's House, and even the Changing of the Guard.
Later we travel to Hampton Court, famous for Henry VIII's residence, with its Great Hall, grand Medieval kitchens, famous art works, such as the Triumphs of Caesar by Mantegna. Originally built by Cardinal Wolsey in a Renaissance style, then later Baroque additions of Christopher Wren.
Hear the stories of love, death and betrayal. Hear or see? the ghost of Henry VIII's 5th wife, Catherine Howard. We can walk through the magnificent 18c landscaped gardens.
Meet at Paddington station in time to board the 8:51 train to Windsor Castle (a thirty minute train ride). The tour can be introduced while travelling to Windsor.
At Windsor we will enter the Castle and visit the St. George's Chapel, the State Apartments and the Queen Mary's Dolls House. Normally we should be able to see the Changing of the Guards.
We then take public transport to Hampton Court Palace where we spend the rest of the afternoon exploring Henry VIII's famous kitchens, Great Hall (where plays by Shakespeare were performed and the King James' Bible was written), the Royal rooms later designed by Sir Christopher Wren for William III and Mary the second and later lived in by the Hanoverian Kings and their families.
We can stroll through the Capability Brown landscaped gardens and view the oldest grape vine in the world.
We will hear stories about these monarchs along the way--such as the ghost of Katherine Howard, the divisions between the Georges.
Return to London by train.
Meeting Point + Tour Duration
Meeting Point Options: Rail or Bus Station, Hotel, Suggested by Guide: We can meet at Paddington Station at 8:45 for an 8:51 departure. If wished, I can collect you at your hotel which entails a much earlier time, depending on the location of your hotel.
End Point Options: Rail or Bus Station, Hotel
Duration: 8 hours
Public transport. Trains and minibus
However, if you wish, I could supply a car and driver for the day. I would need to create a customozed tour then, which would be calculated at a higher rate to include the car and driver.
Estimated Local Cash Needed
70 pounds sterling - Entry into Hampton Court Palace and Windsor Castle.
Transport from London to Windsor and Hampton Court and return
food and drink
I guide using public transport and/or on foot. I can arrange private transport if required.
A Recent Review of this tour
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Dianne's knowledge on paintings, sculptures and other objects displayed at both venues was extensive as was her knowledge on the various occupants. When it came time to return to London we discovered the usual train was disrupted. Dianne calmly found alternative transport and accompanied us all the way back, meaning she had an extra long day. Since the tour, Dianne has gone the extra mile and been in touch with additional information in response to one of my many questions. Lovely caring guide.