Shakespeare Tour

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Total Trip:

7 Days
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Countries Visited:

England
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Places Visited:

London, Oxford, Rollright Stones, Stratford-upon-Avon, Cotswolds
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Departure Dates:

Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.
There is only one Shakespeare, only one man who could create King Lear and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, only man who could so skillfully blend theatre and poetry, only one man who could mix high drama and popular comedy. Yes, there is truly only one Shakespeare, and like the Bard himself, this unforgettable tour is undeniably one-of-a-kind.

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Customizable Itinerary

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Day 1

London – Touching Down in Mighty London

This morning you land on the outskirts of London, the largest city in Europe and one of the leading cities in the world for more centuries, ready to discover the land where William Shakespeare lived, learned, loved and wrote and the places that were his home throughout his life. You’ll be picked up at the airport and escorted to your ideally situated and comfortably luxurious hotel where you can drop off your luggage, freshen up, and hit the London streets: do some shopping at Savile Row, Bond Street or Charing Cross Road or visit one of the city’s excellent museums before visiting Westminster Abbey, one of the most important religious buildings in the United Kingdom and the site of the famous Poet’s Corner, where the greatest names in English letters are lauded for eternity. No author’s presence quite so dominates the space as Shakespeare’s, for the monument to his life is placed in the transept in such a way as to put him, almost literally, center stage, the object of the envious glances of the great writers of the past and the reverential awe of those visitors in the present. After this amazing encounter, you can start out for some dinner in Westminster or neighboring Chelsea, where you might grab some great French cuisine at Circus 1 or the modern gastropub offerings at the Chelsea Brasserie and Bar.

What's Included:

included

Transfer

included

Accommodation

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Day 2

London – Discovering Shakespeare’s Capital

Set out on a day of adventure throughout London as you’ll spend today learning all about Shakespeare’s haunts and homes in the puissant capital. Make your way along the south bank of the Thames to encounter some of the many relics of London under the first Elizabeth, like the stolid towers and stately interior of Southwark Cathedral, a place of worship for more than a millennia and a church steeped in the legacy of the Bard: it is the resting place of his brother Edmund, and monuments to the writer dot the church, like the stained-glass window depicting scenes from his plays and the alabaster sculpture of Shakespeare in a pose of gentle relaxation with a quill in hand.

You’ll also pass the remnants of the famous Rose Theatre, the home of the Lord Chamberlain’s Men until the Globe was built in 1599 and one of the unique theatres in its day, before reaching the welcoming doors of The George Inn, a public house that has been around since the Medieval period and which likely supplied a bed and a meal for a young William Shakespeare from time to time. Your tour of the Bankside concludes at the renowned Shakespeare’s Globe, a stunning recreation undertaken by American director and actor Sam Wanamaker that lies less than half a mile from the site of the original Globe Theatre and which presents period-accurate performances of Shakespeare’s plays every summer. You’ll receive a private tour of this historical structure, from the history of the Old Globe and theatre in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries to the construction techniques of the Globe’s current incarnation.

A delicious lunch replenishes your energy from a long day of touring and prepares you for an incredible matinee performance of one of Shakespeare’s best at the Globe, a thrilling experience that is surely not to be missed.

What's Included:

included

Transfer

included

Accommodation

included

Breakfast, Lunch

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Day 3

South England – A Day of Elegance in Oxford and Blenheim

Today you leave the puissant capital of England and head out to one of the most famous college towns on the planet, ready to take in the beautiful South English countryside and the cultural and historical attractions of Oxford. The city was a major resting place for Shakespeare when entering London or returning to his home at Stratford-upon-Avon, and there are many sites here that were almost certainly visited by the Bard himself, like the remnants of what was once a public house known as the Crown Tavern where Shakespeare would meet with Bishop John Davenant, a good friend of his. Wind your way through the streets and past the edifices of this elegant and glorious city, known as the “city of dreaming spires,” while learning more about Shakespeare’s friends and acquaintances in Oxford and the nearby places that served as inspiration for his plays.

After a delicious lunch in one of the many fine restaurants in Oxford, you’ll turn to the countryside to visit the sprawling estate of Blenheim Palace, the ancestral seat of the Duke of Marlborough and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which was the main setting for Kenneth Brannagh’s ambitious film version of Hamlet. While on your tour of Blenheim, you’ll learn all about the house’s history and the political intrigue that has surrounded it since its completion, as well as about the peculiarities which turned Brannagh’s Hamlet into one of the finest adaptations of Shakespeare of all time. You’ll spend tonight in a charming hotel in the heart of Oxford, ready to experience the nightlife of this up-and-coming metropolis.

What's Included:

included

Transfer

included

Tour

included

Accommodation

included

Breakfast, Lunch

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Day 4

Stratford-upon-Avon – Unforgettable Experiences in Shakespeare’s Birthplace

Make your way out of Oxford and through the surrounding countryside of Oxfordshire, moving steadily to the soil of Warwickshire and the birthplace of the Bard, but not before passing a complex of megalithic monuments that have stumped scholars and inspired artists for centuries: the Rollright Stones. Three separate monuments – known respectively as The King’s Men, The King Stone and The Whispering Nights – have lain in these plains for millennia and have boggled locals and visitors with their enigmatic purpose for centuries. The most popular legend, that the stones represent a king, his loyal men and four traitors that were tricked by a particularly powerful witch, seems to have served for at least part of the inspiration of the Weird Sisters in Macbeth, three of the most famous characters in all of Shakespeare’s works.

After this brush with the supernatural, you’ll cross the bridge over the River Avon that Billy himself took on his way back home, taking in the incredible Old World scene of Stratford-upon-Avon in authentic fashion as you walk the final mile into the town center, taking in all of the sights and sounds and sensations Shakespeare himself experienced centuries ago. Upon arriving in Avon, you’ll get the special opportunity to go behind the scenes at the incomparable Royal Shakespeare Theatre, where you’ll meet members of its eponymous company, learn about the theatre itself, and prepare for an evening of a lifetime, featuring an incredible evening performance and an exclusive Q&A session with a member of the Company following the show. From your first steps in Stratford to the standing ovation following an inspiring play from the great master, this is sure to be a day that every Shakespeare fan will always remember.

What's Included:

included

Transfer

included

Tour

included

Accommodation

included

Breakfast

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Day 5

South England – The Serenity of the Cotswolds and the Grandeur of Broughton Castle

This morning, enjoy a leisurely stroll through Stratford-upon-Avon, taking in some of the many milestones that marked Shakespeare’s life while here, from the restored sixteenth-century home that was where the author was born and spent his earliest days to the church where his remains lie buried next to his wife. After this final tour of Stratford-upon-Avon, you’ll return to Oxford, passing through peaceful, verdant English countryside before reaching the stately façade of Broughton Castle, the setting for some of the most important scenes of the Oscar-winning film Shakespeare in Love. You’ll be guided on a tour around the house and its grounds, taking in the imperial elegance of the Great Hall, the stirring stretch of the ramparts, and the graceful and delicate hedges and flora of the formal garden.

You spend your night back in Oxford for another exciting evening in this vibrant city: enjoy a gorgeous bistro dinner at Brasserie Blanc or a boisterous pub dinner at The Mitre, one of the oldest pubs in the city center.

What's Included:

included

Transfer

included

Tour

included

Accommodation

included

Breakfast

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Day 6

London – One Final Evening in England

You turn back to London after a filling lunch in Oxford, ready to experience one more day of the big city and all of the myriad offerings this monumental metropolis has to offer. Visit the stirring National Portrait Gallery for a glimpse of the iconic Chandos Portrait of Shakespeare or the newly-installed portrait of the Duchess of Cambridge, marvel at the many artifacts that fill the incomparable British Museum, or simply stroll the Thames along the tours, wings and courtyards of the Gothic Palace of Westminster, better known as the Houses of Parliament.

This afternoon features a tour led by one of the actors at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane of the theatre district and its environs, and the evening sees you enjoying dinner at one of London’s most fashionable restaurants before taking in one final play at a theatre in London’s celebrated West End, the foremost purveyor of fine theater this side of Broadway.

What's Included:

included

Transfer

included

Tour

included

Accommodation

included

Breakfast

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Day 7

London – Parting is Such Sweet Sorrow

After a hearty and delicious breakfast at your luxurious London hotel, you’ll be transferred by private car to Heathrow, ready to return home after a vacation filled with magic and memories, drama and history, performances and tours and experiences that you could never forget in two lifetimes of living. And by the time you find yourself aboard the flight home, you might just be planning your return to enchanting England.

What's Included:

included

Transfer

included

Breakfast

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Trip Highlights

  • Hit the highlights of Shakespearean London, from the recreated Globe Theatre to Chandos portrait in the National Gallery, and from the towers of Southwark Cathedral to the monument to the Bard and other illustrious Britons in Westminster Abbey
  • Stop in Oxford, where you’ll witness the peaceful beauty of this renowned university town before experiencing the inimitable splendor of Blenheim Palace, one of the largest houses in the entire country
  • Arrive in Stratford-upon-Avon as Shakespeare would, where you’ll visit the place of his birth and get an insider’s look at the theatre and company that now bear his name
  • Return to London by way of the Cotswalds, getting a sense of the true serenity of the English countryside, before stopping at Broughton Castle, the backdrop for much of the film Shakespeare in Love
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Detailed Description

From his dramas to his comedies and his sonnets to his histories, there is simply no writer in the English language that exerts quite the hold on our literary subconscious as the Bard of Avon, William Shakespeare. This eight-day tour will give you the chance to walk in the great writer’s shoes, learn about life in Elizabethan England and discover the continuing efforts to promote the works of this singular genius. And with a backstage look at the famous Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon and no fewer than three world class performances, this is sure to be a trip that you’ll want to write home about.

Walk the south shores of the Thames in the heart of London’s Bankside to discover the memorials to Shakespeare and English drama from the sixteenth century, from public houses to cathedrals and from theatres to taverns. Explore the English countryside around Shakespeare’s birth as you tour the university town of Oxford and the stunning homes of Blenheim Palace and Broughton Castle. And experience Shakespeare’s birthplace in true style as you get a behind-the-scenes look into the Royal Shakespeare Theatre and prime seats to a performance by the Royal Shakespeare Company, the most accomplished troupe of Shakespearean actors on the planet.

You’ve memorized Hamlet’s soliloquies and you’ve delighted at Puck’s monologues, seen the movies and read the plays, know the legends and yearn for the facts of this truly unique individual: now all that’s left is to meet the world he lived in. Be you college professor or high school freshman, a Shakespeare novitiate or a Bard aficionado, a bibliophile or drama fanatic, this is the only tour that will truly introduce you to the world of Shakespeare.

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Starting Price

$2445 per person (excluding international flights)

This trip is customizable for your private travel.
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What's Included

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all guided tours and activities (dependent on season)
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip
The starting price is based on travel during the low season for a minimum of two travelers staying in shared 3-star accommodations. Please inquire for a custom trip quote based on your travel preferences and travel dates.

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