The River Thames weaves through an elaborate patchwork of English history. Eclectically turning through the centuries, it connects royal palaces with 11th-century villages and World War II history with lush country gardens. Serene and sublime, this unique 9-day Thames River cruise tour traverses the paradigms, connecting Hurley-on-Thames with Hampton Court. Split your time between tranquilly cruising through rural England and exploring the mysterious charms of the country's past.
Hampton Court – English Cream Tea and a Welcome to the Thames
Leisurely English introductions can only come in one form: traditional afternoon tea. A tiered silver platter adorns the table, embellished with a menagerie of scones, finger sandwiches, and sensational pastries. Tea leaves brew in fine china teapots while the separate milk and sugar jars reveal the English dedication to detail. An atmosphere of elegance pervades through the ballroom as you slowly sample the variety of cakes that line up on the table. This English tradition is running strong after countless centuries and provides a fitting introduction to the style of your itinerary. Afternoon tea can't be rushed. It's something to savor, an experience that runs on for two or three hours as you lounge in the luxury of the setting. Teapots are refilled, another platter of treats come out, and the crumbs pile up on your china plate.
After landing in England, you'll be transferred to a five-star hotel in London. Day access to a hotel room enables you to shower and freshen up before the relaxed afternoon of tea and treats in the hotel's ballroom. Once you're fully settled into the salubrious style, you're transferred out to the luxury barge, moored amidst a canopy of green at Hampton Court. The River Thames is gentle. Unlike an ocean cruise, there's no rocking from side to side or sporadic crashing waves. Over the centuries, most of the river has been controlled by locks, meaning the water moves at an almost imperceptible speed. Enjoy a welcome reception that befits the regal backdrop and sit down to a lavish gourmet dinner on board. The salon enjoys panoramic windows, enabling you to continue the immersion in rural life at all times. So sit back and watch the sultry summer evening spill into an elongated sunset. Consider reading some of our England traveler reviews, and gain some inspiration to further perfect your own England itinerary.
Runnymede – Cruising Through the Early 16th Century
Runnymede to Windsor – The World's Oldest Inhabited Castle
Boveney Lock to Cliveden Reach – Ornate Country Estates in Rural England
Cookham to Hurley-on-Thames – Tranquil Cruising on the Historic River
Hurley-on-Thames – Traditional Crafts and a Day Trip to Oxford
Day 7 - 8
Mayfair – Luxurious Relaxation in the Heart of London