European Gardens and Chelsea Flower Show Tour- CFE
Number of Days: 14
On this exclusive tour we tour The Netherlands, France and England and visit unique and special places, not just those on the standard tourist route, and as the fun of touring includes meeting new people, our small tour groups are ideal. Our itinerary, proven by us over 27 years, combines the very best of the European spring shows and gardens - you are in for the treat of a lifetime.
The Keukenhof Tulip Gardens will astound you with 8 million bulbs planted over 32 hectares. See inspirational gardens and dazzling pavilions which feature superb flower displays along with new varieties and other attractions. There is simply colour galore!
2019 is the 106th Chelsea Flower Show and this famous event promises to be even bigger and better. But it’s not just Chelsea and the stunning Keukenhof tulip gardens that make this such a sought after tour,as we have also included Amsterdam, Paris, Monet’s beautiful garden at Giverny, Loire chateaux and Versailles Palace and gardens, plus the picturesque Cotswolds and the spectacular English gardens of Sudeley, Hidcote and Sissinghurst.
Unlike many other tours there are no hidden extras with FloraTours – if it’s in the itinerary we visit it - there's a big difference between itineraries that state “see” and our itinerary where you actually “visit” attractions, making our tours very competitively priced. Our tour itinerary has also been refined to eliminate many of the tiring aspects of travel - NO moving on every morning to a new hotel and we minimise long coach travelling, wherever possible.
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14 DAY ITINERARY
Day 1 - Sat Amsterdam
- 2019 tour: commences in Amsterdam Saturday 11 May 2019.
- 2020 tour commences in Amsterdam Saturday 09 May 2020.
After breakfast this morning we have a short orientation tour and a canal cruise before we transfer to the hotel - our base for the next 3 nights. Please be sure to wear your name badge. This evening we enjoy a Welcome Dinner where you will be able to meet and get to know your fellow travellers in our group.DDay 2 - Sun Keukenhof
We spend the morning absorbing the majestic beauty of one of the world's finest bulb fields, the Keukenhof Garden. Its 80 acres of winding paths, streams and placid ponds offer an exuberant feast for the eyes. There are tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and other flowering bulbs, flowering shrubs, ancient trees, indoor exhibitions, flower parades, and no fewer than seven themed gardens. BDay 3 - Mon AmsterdamThis morning we venture into the countryside to the pretty village of Limmen. This is the home of Hortus Bulborum, established in 1928 with tulips dating from 1595 as a gene pool for the Dutch bulb industry. There are 3,500 different tulip, hyacinth and daffodil species. The preservation of heirloom bulbs is a major focus. Many of them have no commercial value for modern mass production; the aim, rather, is to keep these cultivars for future generations. We return to our hotel and the balanceof the day is free. BDay 4 - Tues Amsterdam - ParisAfter breakfast we travel to Paris. Upon arrival in Paris there is a city sightseeing tour so we can get our bearings and highlights of the City of Lights. We then transfer and check in to our hotel, our base for four nights..BDay 5 - Wed ParisToday we visit Monet’s Garden of Giverny, Monet's home for more than 40 years. There are two parts to Monet's garden: a flower garden called Clos Normand in front of the house and a Japanese inspired water garden. Both parts contrast and complement one another. Claude Monet did not like organized or constrained gardens. In the Clos Normand he left them to grow rather freely. In the water garden see the famous wisteria covered Japanese bridge, weeping willows and memorable water lilies. This afternoon we visit Louis XIV's magnificent Versailles Palace with its sweeping gardens and water features.BDay 6 – Thur ParisToday is free for your own sightseeing. In your free time in Paris options abound, including the Louvre, strolling the Seine, or sitting at a street-side café on the cobbled streets of Le Marais district in central Paris enjoying a coffee and warm croissant with butter and jam, watching the Parisians going about their daily lives.BDay 7 - Fri Chateaux and gardensToday we visit two of France's grand gardens - Chateau Vaux-le-Vicomte and Fontainebleau. “The forerunner of Versailles”, the Chateau Vaux-le-Vicomte was laid out in 1661, and includes a parterre, immaculately clipped topiary yew, water features, reflective pools, and a grand canal with grottoes on one side and a cascade on the other. Once the noblest garden in all France, Fontainebleau was built for king, Francois I, to rival the great courts of Italy. BDay 8 - Sat Paris – LondonToday we transfer to Paris' Gare du Nord Railway Station to join the Eurostar train to London, then transfer to our hotel for overnight accommodation.BDay 9 - Sun Cotswold VillagesThis morning we board our coach for our excursion to the Cotswolds. Our sightseeing includes picturesque Cotswolds villages of honey-golden stone, Stow-on-the-Wold, Moreton-in-Marsh and Burford. Then transfer to our hotel for two night’s accommodation.BDay 10 - Fri Cotswold GardensTwo of the Cotswolds' best-known gardens are Sudeley Castle and the Hidcote Manor Gardens - we enjoy both these stunning gardens today. Whether you love the simple beauty of an English country garden, the Cotswold countryside, or places rich in history, Sudeley exhibits all in fabulous fashion. One of the most inventive and influential gardens of the 20th century is the National Trust's Hidcote Manor Garden. Its structure of 'outdoor rooms', linked by vistas and furnished with topiary, this reflects both the English garden style and the European connections of its 1930s creator Major Lawrence Johnston.BDay 11 – Tues Cotswolds – LondonWe depart the Cotswolds for Sissinghurst, one of the world's most celebrated gardens, the creation of Vita Sackville-West. It is located in an intimate setting in the grounds of an Elizabethan mansion, with romantic little compartments filled with its displays. Later we continue onto London for three night’s accommodation.BDay 12 - Wed LondonA free day to do as you have a chat to your tour host for sightseeing options.BDay 13 - Thur London - Chelsea Flower ShowToday we enjoy a full day at the stunning Chelsea Flower Show, the world's most popular flower show. Farewell dinner (included) tonight. B,DDay 14 - Fri LondonThe tour concludes this morning after breakfast. If you are staying on in London you will need to check out of the hotel. There is a transfer to London Heathrow (LHR) International Airport for those who are booked on the group flight. B
Meals include as above: B = Continental breakfast, D= Dinner
- 4 star centrally located hotel accommodation,
- All breakfasts,
- Special welcome and farewell dinners,
- Tour host,
- Entrance fees to all gardens and events as per the final itinerary including entry to the best garden show on earth – The Chelsea Flower Show.
- 4 star centrally located hotel accommodation,
- from $8,495 per person