When you arrive in London, you find a mixture of wide-open spaces and chic urban style, antique galleries with millennia of history, and riverside walkways leading to hidden palaces. In the winter, a light dusting of snow carpets the cobblestone streets and creates a majestic wonderland. The trees around Hyde Park look as though they blossom snowflakes. Pubs have roaring fires in charming fireplaces. The Tower of London stands against the backdrop of the River Thames with the White Tower at the center of the grounds. The London Eye offers views of the city from a vantage point alongside the river, across from where Big Ben chimes on the quarter hour over the House of Parliament. The Old Bailey, the Central Criminal Court of England and Wales, crowns the judiciary complex and dates back to the 16th century. A gilded justice adorns the cupola with scales in one hand and a sword in the other.
Your private transfer meets you at the airport escorting you to a luxurious hotel near the heart of the London. The splendor of the city stands before you with a cool breeze of winter rippling the river, showcasing the comforts of new and classic restaurants, and the beauty of a modern, yet antique city.
London glows in the winter with ferry lights and a seasonal charm glinting off of the dusted snow. In the morning, you wrap your hands around a hot mug of coffee and watch the locals outside ready for the day with long, soft scarfs and comfortable, cushioned coats. Your guide meets you in the lobby of your hotel ready to show you the iconic beauty of London no matter the time of year. An ice skating rink decorates Hyde Park, brandished with more than 100,000 lights dangling above the ice and glittering in refractive brightness.
Westminster Abbey stands behind the House of Parliament and has stood as the house of coronation for British kings and queens since the 11th century. The grassy forecourt has an elegant layer of snow dusting the otherwise grassy area. The two façade towers were erected in the 18th century using Portland stone and are connected by an entrance hall. The rose window decorates the north entrance and is both imposing and graceful alongside the castle-like spires. A beautifully tiled sanctuary illuminates the heart of the abbey and was used for coronations and royal weddings. The large, vaulted ceilings create wide-open space. In Poet’s Corner, you can find the likes of Chaucer and Kipling and even James Austen. A large quill is etched into the stonework alongside Chaucer’s ossuary. An inscription on the back of the elegantly decorated wooden memorial commemorates the writer as “The Father of English Poetry.”
The beauty of the morning emerges from the streaks of white lining the river-walk, over the cobblestones, and gracing the ancient Egyptian obelisk looking over the River Thames. After breakfast, the day is yours to revel in the beauty of London at your whim and pleasure, taking in the boutique charm around Oxford Street or the antique bookstores near Covent Gardens.
The V&A Museum, which stands for the Victoria and Albert Museum, was established in the mid 19th century and covers more than 12 acres of land and has a collection spanning 5,000 years of art history. The architecture is as interesting as the artwork, containing a mixture of Victorian and Edwardian design. The Ceramic Staircase has detailed embellishments painted on the arches, the domes, and even in the triangular crevices that connect the two. Underneath the dropped ceiling, you find Bernini’s Neptune and Triton, a breathtaking sculpture filled with immense detail dating back to the 17th century. The statue shows Neptune in a commanding position with his son, Triton, between Neptune’s leg announcing the arrival of the King of Earth and Oceans. Neptune casts an imposing figure standing almost six-feet tall and cut completely from marble.
The day is once again yours to venture out into the beauty of London and enjoy the city at your leisure. Stroll alongside the River Thames for a perfect view of the Tower Bridge or take the day to indulge in the artifacts at the British Museum. You could even journey outside the city to the enchanting Georgian city of Bath, where the cream colored stone buildings stand out against the brightness of the lightly fallen snow.
Bath has a history dating back more than 2,000 years. The current of the Avon River brushes against the quiet banks. The semicircular Georgian architecture of the Royal Crescent showcases the splendor of historic townhouses with charming terraces overlooking the tranquil grounds of Royal Victoria Park. The Roman Bathhouses were erected over the natural hot springs, which emit water naturally heated to approximately 115 degrees Fahrenheit. The baths were erected next to a temple dedicated to the heading goddess Sulis Minerva. The city of Bath was constructed around the bathhouse, preserving the ancient architecture and adding 18th and 19th century architectural gems of its own. At the heart of the complex, you find the Great Bath, heated by what the Romans referred to as the “Sacred Spring,” and has a depth of more than five feet. In the open ceiling, you can see the steam rising from the pool creating a comfortable heat in the winter cool.
In the morning, you wrap your fingers around a hot cup of tea and let the refreshing taste linger on your tongue. London has shown you how captivating history and fashionable modernity can coexist effortlessly. After breakfast, your private transfer meets you at the hotel and escorts you to St. Pancras Station. You board your train for Paris and find your cabin comfortable. Outside of London, the countryside hills roll into the horizon, decorated with sporadic trees and a fresh blanket of pristine snow. The train ventures into the Chunnel, the 31-mile long tunnel underneath the English Channel linking Folkestone, England to Coquelles, France.
Your tour of France begins with your arrival in Paris. Your private transfer greets you at Gare du Nord Station, escorting you to a lavish hotel near the heart of the elegant city. The Eiffel Tower lights up the open park of the Champ de Mars. A large ice-skating rink decorates the forecourt of the L’Hôtel de Ville, where the 19th century building adds architectural grandeur to the jovial atmosphere. Paris is a city of romance and flair, filled with a classic style emulated by people and cities around the world. In the evening, you can sit in the café Angelina, and sip a creamy, decadent hot chocolate, warming your hands on the mug, nibbling at a perfectly sweet vanilla macaroon, and watching the winter fantasyland outside.
Paris is known for its elegant café culture. Even in the winter, cafes line the sidewalks with tables and chairs. Parisians sit and enjoy a steaming cup of espresso, wrapped warmly in their scarf and coat, watching other Parisians pass by on their way to anywhere. You wrap your hands around a hot, frothy cappuccino and settle into the Parisian lifestyle. Your guide meets you at the hotel ready to lead you through the remarkable treasures of the enchanting City of Lights.
The Champs Elysees is one of the city’s best-known boulevards. Trees line sidewalks, bordering the wide lanes. The street stretches for over one-mile, connecting the Place de la Concorde with the Place de Charles de Gaulle. In winter, the splendor of the boulevard seems to grow. A winter market springs to life with lights strung along the shops and wrapped around the trees. The lavish window displays offer a show to everyone passing through. Small stands clad in red and white showcase decorations, along with specialty cheeses and liqueurs, and provide samples. The Arc de Triomphe stands at the edge of the boulevard like a crown, creating a dramatic end to the opulent walkway.
When a light snow drifts over the city, the pearl coloration of Sacre Coeur blends into the pure white snowfall. The church stands atop the Bohemian neighborhood of Montmartre overlooking the rooftops of the city with a view out to the Eiffel Tower across the River Seine. After breakfast, the day is yours to enjoy the city at your leisure. Consider venturing out to the extravagant Palace of Versailles or ducking into the famous Louvre Museum to spend time with the art and artifacts.
The Latin Quarter is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Paris, situated in the 5th arrondissement, and was once the heart of the Roman occupation of the city from the 1st century BC to the 5th century AD. The aroma of rosemary and thyme filter out of a collection of restaurants. The Rue du Chat-qui-Peche is often touted as the narrowest street in the city and dates back to the Middle Ages.
It is easy to find yourself at the Sorbonne, one of the most prestigious academic institutions in the world dating back to the 13th century. A fountain trickles in the square in front of the entrance where a line of buoyant water lines the walkway to the portico. Standing in front of the academy, your interest is piqued from having educated the likes of Thomas Aquinas and Longfellow.
The draw of Paris only grows stronger with every morning. The light glances off of the ice rinks around the city. Houseboats offer cozy respite from the winter, filled with charming cafes wading in the current, and looking out to the River Seine. The Shakespeare and Company Bookstore opens its doors with a view out to the dramatic gargoyles of the Cathedrale de Notre Dame de Paris.
At breakfast, you savor the foamy layer and creamy texture of your fresh cappuccino. Soon, your private transfer will meet you at the hotel and escort you to the Charles de Gaulle International Airport for your flight home, but if you aren’t ready to leave, then you could always stay little while longer.
You may want to browse the European vacations section on Zicasso for more itinerary options.
The tale of London and Paris is no longer between two cities but encapsulated in the layers of the cities themselves. The winter brings enchantment to both cities beyond the historic streets, lavish architecture, and chic contemporary cultures. Winter markets light up open squares. Ice skating rinks roll around parks. The aroma of cinnamon and nutmeg drift out of every bakery. Your custom tailored London and Paris tour in winter, provides you with a combination of guided tours and leisure time, enabling you to witness the icons and explore the cities in a way that only you can experience.
Step into the winter wonderland with your arrival in London. The city glows against the banks of the River Thames, filled with holiday cheer sweeping across the cobbled streets. Your private transfer meets you at Heathrow International Airport and escorts you to a luxurious hotel near London’s city center. The following day, your guide meets you in the lobby ready to lead you on a half-day tour through the brilliant history of London that has informed the city and its culture for over a millennium. The next two days are yours to relish the stylish city as you please, whether indulging in the more than eight million artifacts inside the British Museum or strolling along Oxford Street in search of holiday sales at the local shops. Every moment will be a memorable and merry experience.
Your private transfer escorts you from the hotel to St. Pancras Station for your easy train ride to the Gare du Nord Station in Paris. You are escorted to your lavish hotel in the heart of Paris with a view out to the Eiffel Tower. Your guide meets you at the hotel and takes you along the celebrated majesty of the city, from the Arc de Triomphe to the winter market along the Champs Elysees. Spend another day entirely at your leisure. Relax in a café, wander the galleries of the Musee d’Orsay, or roam the opulent halls of Versailles. On your final morning, your private transfer meets you in the hotel lobby and escorts you to the Charles de Gaulle International Airport for your flight home.
You may want to read the travel reviews of France for traveler experiences on their customized trips.
$2491 per person (excluding international flights)
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