Portsmouth also known as Pompey, is home to three hugely important historic ships, HMS Victory, Nelson's famous flagship at the battle of Trafalgar, HMS Warrior the first ironclad warship and the Mary Rose, Henry VIII's warship that sank in the Solent just off of Southsea Castle. These are all housed at the Historic Dockyard, home of the Royal Navy and also home to the world’s first dry dock. The Historic Dockyard is one of the top ten visitor attractions in the UK. View more
The romance of the seas, small ship sizes and intimate atmosphere, Silversea has long been a leader in the ultra-luxury market. Travelling to both iconic and secluded ports, Silversea’s award-winning itineraries inspire wanderlust and exploration. With over 900 destinations, longer port stays and more late-night departures than ever before, even the savviest traveler will find something new. A butler for every suite, a complimentary in-suite bar stocked with your preferences, all-inclusive exquisite dining, award-winning onboard entertainment and an unparalleled space to guest ratio all contribute to the Silversea experience. Not forgetting our famed Italian hospitality, where new faces become old friends. Bienvenuti a bordo.
Enjoy a tour inside Arundle Castle and around the peaceful grounds.
Board the coach for an hour journey that takes you across the countryside to an area of the South Downs, characterised by rolling chalk landscapes which has been inhabited by man since earliest times. The Sussex Downs is an area of outstanding natural beauty and large areas are owned and managed by the National Trust. Travel to the picturesque market town of Arundel which spans the River Arun. Its charming town centre streets, lined with Georgian and Victorian buildings are overlooked by the majestic 11th century Arundel Castle which dominates the skyline. The palatial castle at Arundel has grown from its modest origins as a motte and bailey castle built by Roger de Montgomery, Earl of Arundel, around 1068. A shell keep was added to the top of the motte in about 1140, and curtain walls, a chapel and a garden, possibly the first Royal garden in England, were added by King Henry 11.
There are nearly 1,000 years of history at the great castle, situated in magnificent grounds which sweep down to the river. It has been the seat of the Dukes of Norfolk and their ancestors for over 850 years. The Duke of Norfolk is the Premier Duke, the title having been conferred on Sir John Howard in 1483 by his friend King Richard 111. The Dukedom has carried with it the hereditary office of Earl Marshall of England. This means the Duke is in charge of state ceremonial such as the coronation and funeral of the sovereign and such occasions as the sovereign declares shall be a state occasions.
The castle is approached through a 19th century lower lodge, across a wooden drawbridge and through the Barbican. Original Sussex flint-work on the walls of the south front can still be seen. The inner gateway built during the 11th century, is one of the earliest parts to survive. Have the chance to tour the earlier medieval parts of the castle including the keep and the barbican gate. Next view the rich interiors of a stately home. The castle conceals a very fine collection of furniture, paintings, clocks, tapestries, armour and much, much more, including personal possessions of Mary, Queen of Scots. See the library, which is now seen as one of the finest examples of Gothic rooms in the country today. Also view the splendid dining room, originally the private chapel, created by the 11th Duke, and the Baron's Hall a superb example of late Victorian architecture.
After wander through the tranquil grounds to see the Fitzalan Chapel founded in 1390 by the 4th Earl of Arundel which is till the burial place of the Dukes of Norfolk. It is a fine example of Gothic architecture with a carved timber roof and choir stalls. The carved stone tombs are of major artistic interest. Stroll through the newly restored Victorian kitchen and flower gardens.
Next board the coach for the one hour scenic drive back to Portsmouth.
Please note: This tour involves moderate amount of walking, with some uneven ground and gravel paths at the Garden. Guests must be able to embark and disembark the coach via steps without assistance. This tour is not suitable for guests who utlise a wheelchair as much of the castles interior are accessible. Warm clothing and comfortable footwear are suggested.
Embark on a panoramic sightseeing tour of the City of London, including the Tower of London, Tower Bridge and St. Paul's Cathedral. with photo stops at the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey and Buckingham Palace.
From the hustle and bustle of Leicester Square, at the heart of London's theatre district; to the quiet parks with their tress and lakes, and the grandeur of Buckingham Palace - London's fascination is its variety. Old and new stand side by side. History, pageantry and tradition mix with the modern, eccentric and avant-garde, offering something for everyone.
This full day tour enables you to obtain an overall impression of one of the most lively and interesting cities in the world. A city that welcomes you to its red buses and friendly 'Bobbies'; great churches, imposing statues and elegant pubs.
Arrive at the 'West End', the part of central London west of the City's limits. Three famous shopping streets - Oxford Street, Regent Street and Piccadilly, can be found in this part of London. From Trafalgar Square, in which stands imposing Nelson's Column, and flanked by the National Art Gallery, you will pass through Admiralty Arch and into The Mall, where at the far end stands Buckingham Palace, London residence of the Queen. On one side of The Mall is delightful St. James's Park, a quiet and relaxed oasis with its flowerbeds and its ducks and pelicans on the lake.
Next you will see Whitehall with its poignant War Memorial - the Cenotaph, Horseguards Parade and Downing Street, official London residence of the Prime Minister. Onto Westminster - Parliament Square and the Houses of Parliament, surely the focal point of English history. Nearby is the architectural masterpiece of the 13th to 16th centuries - Westminster Abbey. It represents a unique pageant of British history as the setting for every Coronation since 1066, and for numerous other Royal occasions. Your Guide will point out the main external features of the building and you will be able to take photographs.
Following lunch at a local traditional London pub, you will next see the `City`. London would not be London without its captivating `square mile` of old City - the historic and intriguing area around which modern London as we know it has grown. The medieval and Georgian atmosphere still survives, and in this area you will see, and photograph, the mighty buildings of The Tower of London, and St. Paul's Cathedral.
Note: Parts of the itinerary may be reversed depending on local traffic conditions. Guide normally leaves the tour prior to return journey to Portsmouth.
Please note: This tour involves moderate amount of walking. Guests must be able to embark and disembark the coach via steps without assistance. This tour is not suitable for guests who utlise a wheelchair. Warm clothing and comfortable footwear are suggested. The tour sequence may vary.
Embark a ferry for this full day tour to Fishbourne to visit Osborne House. The Isle of Wight, where Queen Victoria built her much loved summer residence at Osborne House, is separated from the south coast of England by the stretch of waterway known as the Solent.
Sandy bays, high cliffs and sheltered creeks fringe England`s second smallest county. Inland, the River Medina flows through a gently sloping downland, dotted with farms, woods and attractive little villages. The Victorians built forts along the coast to guard against invasion from the Continent, and Queen Victoria and Prince Albert made the island their summer home.
After a pleasant 40 minute ferry-ride to the Island and boarding our motorcoach we visit Osborne House. Victoria and Albert bought the Osborne House with their own money in 1845, and the Prince supervised the building, landscaping and all alterations very closely during the next six years. It was to be a country retreat where the family could be free from state ceremonial. Its situation, though relatively convenient to London, was yet secluded. Nearby was the sea, with a private beach for bathing and boating. The house and its 350 acre estate allow a rare glimpse into Queen Victoria's family life.
The internal visit starts with the Grand Corridor where you will see a fine statue of Queen Victoria in classical costume, set in a gilded niche. The highly decorated walls and ceilings of the corridor reflects Prince Albert's liking for the Italian Renaissance, acquired during his Italian tour of 1838. Continue along the corridor and into the Main Wing which housed principal guests and the Queen's children when they left the nursery. Passing through the Billiard Room and into the Drawing Room, which Queen Victoria described as `extremely handsome`. Next go upstairs, we see the Royal Nursery Suite, and in the centre of the Pavilion, the Queen's sitting room where Victoria worked on her dispatch-boxes, assisted by Albert in his capacity as her private and personal secretary. Queen Victoria became Empress of India in 1876, see that most of the objects in the Durbar Corridor relate to that country including the Durbar Room, a state banqueting hall. Following the visit to the principal rooms, wander outside to the extensive terraces overlooking the formal flower beds, statutory, and sweeping lawns leading to delightful views to the coast beyond.
The landscape of the island is remarkably diverse, leading to its oft-quoted description of 'England in Miniature'. Some free time in made available the small town of Cowes. Next begin the picturesque drive by heading inland towards the town of Newport, the island capital. Located at the head of the River Medina, this charming town has attractive array of 17th-century houses, a typically Georgian quayside and beautiful Guildhall. Continue south passing the charming village of Godshill. In the village stands the garden of the local vicarage - before arriving at the south end of the island and the village of Shanklin, and then onto Fishbourne to board the Ferry back to Portsmouth.
Please note: This tour involves moderate amount of walking. Guests must be able to embark and disembark the coach and ferry via steps without assistance. This tour is not suitable for guests who utlise a wheelchair. Warm clothing and comfortable footwear are suggested. Guests must be at least 21 years old to be served alcoholic beverages.
From Portsmouth to Windsor enjoy this full day tour of Windsor Castle. The area around Windsor is steeped in history, dominated by its famous Castle, originally built as a fortress by William the Conqueror. Across the river, which flows on past Runnymede, scene of King John's signing of Magna Carta, many distinguished and eminent men have been educated at Eton College.
Board a coach and travel directly on the motor-way route from Portsmouth towards Windsor for one hour and a half. From many miles distance the Castle can be seen rising above the River Thames and the charming town which surrounds it.
Windsor Castle is probably the largest fortress of its kind in the world, and has belonged continuously to the sovereigns for over 900 years. The Castle dominates the town, standing on a chalk outcrop overlooking the river, and from whichever direction approached, it rises magical in outline above the surrounding countryside. Seen from a distance it is beautiful beyond imagination, for it is all perfectly in proportion and the delicate flying buttresses of St. George's Chapel give a graceful relief from the rugged solidity of the Round Tower and the Royal Apartments. Excellent views of Eton, Runnymede and the countryside can be obtained from the castle walls. It is still the setting for great ceremonies of state, and houses many of the priceless treasures in the Royal Collection.
Visit the State Apartments and St. George's Chapel. Entering England's largest castle through the Henry VIII Gateway, it is bearing Henry's coast of arms and that of his first wife, Catherine of Aragon. Beyond is the immense courtyard of Lower ward, flanked by St. George's Chapel, leading to the mound and the Round Tower. The State Apartments have painted ceilings, paneled walls, Adam fireplaces, classic furniture and priceless paintings and drawings. This magnificent suite of ceremonial rooms is used by the Queen to entertain visiting Heads of State. One of the most beautiful religious buildings in England, St. George's Chapel was begun in 1475 by King Edward IV. Built in the Perpendicular style of Gothic architecture, the chapel took 51 years to complete. Ten monarchs have been buried here.
Following the castle visit and after the delightful lunch there will be a short time for independent sightseeing in the main part of Windsor town, which grew up around the Castle in the Middle Ages. There are quaint Georgian shops, houses and inns whilst the most prominent building on the High Street is the Guildhall completed by Sir Christopher Wren in 1689.
Board the coach and travel back to Portsmouth.
Please note: This tour involves moderate amount of walking. This tour is suitable for guests with limited mobility and those who utlise a wheelchair. Guests must be able to embark and disembark the coach and ferry via steps without assistance. Warm clothing and comfortable footwear are suggested. Guests must be at least 21 years old to be served alcoholic beverages. Parts of Windsor Castle may be closed at short notice due to Ceremonial or State occasions.
Visit to one of Britain's most famous attractions, Stonehenge as well as a panoramic sightseeing tour of Salisbury.
Board the coach and travel an hour and a half from Portsmouth through the suburbs with their variety of houses and neat gardens, heading towards the open countryside. The fresh green and blossoms of a new spring heighten the hedgerows and stretches of rural landscapes and enjoy the pastoral and agricultural views. The itinerary now takes us into the lovely Woodford valley, containing some of the loveliest and most peaceful villages in the County, and through which the River Avon lazily flows. The narrow road winds along the valley following almost every twist and turn of the west bank of the river and passing through straggling picturesque villages whose thatched and chequered stonework cottages shelter in the lee of protecting slopes. Water-meadows with their waving lines of elegant willow trees complement the peaceful picture-postcard English countryside scenes before we leave the valley and continue to Stonehenge.
One piece of magic that never fails to cast a spell over visitors is the awe inspiring sight of Stonehenge. This mighty symbol of pre-history is a wonder of the world drawing thousands of visitors each year to witness its awesome majesty. Simplicity, solitude and a powerful air of mystery surround this enigmatic and ancient circle of stones set in isolation.
From the bus park, you walk through the short tunnel and onto the field site. The actual stones are fenced off to protect their fabric, but your Guide will accompany you along the encircling pathway for close up views, and will describe what has been concluded from observations and archaeological evidence about the builders, their beliefs, tools and methods. Alternatively, you may care to walk around the area on your own obtaining fine photographic opportunities of the entire stone circle.
Leave the unsolved mysteries of silent Stonehenge to the mists of time and continue the short distance to Salisbury whose lofty cathedral spire can be seen from many miles distance. By the end of the 15th century Salisbury had already achieved a maturity which compels us, despite the fact that it has never ceased to grow since, to think of it essentially as a medieval city. For most of its life the city has been dominated by the power of the church and we walk with our Guide through the centre to view the charming 13th century cathedral enshrining 700 years of English history. See the fine buildings within Cathedral Close which itself provides a perfect setting for the beauty of the cathedral, and the nearby grid streets containing black-and-white half-timbered houses.
Board the coach for a scenic drive back to Portsmouth.
Please note: This tour involves minimal amount of walking. Guests must be able to embark and disembark the coach and ferry via steps without assistance. This tour is not suitable for guests who utlise a wheelchair. Warm clothing and comfortable footwear are suggested. Guests must be at least 21 years old to be served alcoholic beverages.