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Liverpool, Cheshire & Northern Ireland

A Titanic Legacy

Prices From $6,640p/p

The port of Liverpool has strong links to Northern Ireland, from the flood of immigrants who came to Liverpool in the 19th century, they also share an industrial heritage in shipping, with the Titanic being built in Belfast but registered in Liverpool. We explore further links as we travel to the north of England, taking in grand houses such as Tatton Park and Arley Hall, before flying into Northern Ireland to discover equally stunning Mount Stewart House alongside natural wonder the Giant’s Causeway and the industrial giant of Titanic Belfast.

Special extras included in your itinerary
• Lunch at Kenilworth Castle
• Guided tour of Arley Hall
• Guided tour of Liverpool
• Guided tour of Belfast
• Lunch at Benvarden House
• Guided tour of Castle Ward
• Guided walking tour of Oxford
• Themed evening talk by a guest speaker

Day 1
Sunday: Arrival

On arrival at Heathrow airport, a private transfer will take you to our overnight hotel the Macdonald Windsor Hotel. In the evening you are invited to join the group for a welcome drink, followed by dinner.

Day 2
Monday: Warwick and Kenilworth Castle

This morning we begin our day in the historic town of Warwick, famous for its castle. Situated on the River Avon, we’ll have some free time here to explore this picturesque town.

We then continue on to Kenilworth Castle, one of England’s largest medieval fortresses and most impressive castle ruins. It was here that Robert Dudley, the great love of Elizabeth I, created an ornate palace in 1575. Walk in the footsteps of royalty and enjoy panoramas over the surrounding countryside, unseen for centuries from new viewing platforms. We also have an included lunch at the castle.

Later we check in to our hotel for the night, the New Hall Hotel & Spa, and enjoy dinner together.

Day 3
Tuesday: Weston Park and Arley Hall

Today we venture to Weston Park, a magnificent 17th-century stately home set amidst 1,000 acres of Capability Brown parkland and beautiful gardens. The dining room houses one of the country’s most impressive collections of paintings including works by renowned artists such as Sir Anthony van Dyck.

Next we head to Arley Hall, the much-loved home of Viscount Ashbrook and his forbears for over 500 years. We enjoy a guided tour of the Hall which provides a warm and intimate atmosphere with elaborate ceilings, oak-panelling and beautiful furniture. The formal gardens are home to a huge variety of plants, including a magnificent double herbaceous border.

We then check in to our hotel in the Liverpool area where we stay for the next three nights. After dinner, we are treated to a fascinating themed talk by a guest speaker.

Day 4
Wednesday: Tatton Park and Liverpool

Built by Samuel Wyatt, Tatton Park is one of Britain’s most complete estates, with a landscaped deer park and exquisite formal gardens. The opulent interior is crammed with collections of silver, china, glass and fine furniture made by Gillows. This grandeur also extends outside to the garden, where year-round colour is provided by the Rose, Italian and Japanese gardens.

In the afternoon, we enjoy a guided tour of Liverpool learning all there is to know about its history as an industrial force and, of course, its most famous sons. From the Liver Building to the renovated Albert Dock we’ll discover some of the city’s impressive landmarks. We’ll also go inside one of Liverpool’s iconic cathedrals, the Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral, a place of worship which is affectionately known as ‘Paddy’s Wigwam’.

This evening we enjoy dinner at a local restaurant. 

Day 5
Thursday: Knowsley Hall and Speke Hall

Today we begin by visiting splendid Knowsley Hall, home to the Earl of Derby. Set in a 2,500 acre estate, the Hall dates back over 500 years and is a fascinating structure boasting a Georgian facade and some extremely fine Jacobean, Baroque and Victorian interiors.

This afternoon we visit Speke Hall, a little piece of Tudor tranquillity with later Victorian additions to boot as well as some fine Jacobean plasterwork and a spectacular Great Hall. The fully equipped Victorian kitchen recreates the existence of the hall’s servants in the past. Outside, admire the eye-catching black and white timber exterior and the beautiful restored gardens.

Tonight is at leisure for you to make your own arrangements for dinner. 

Day 6
Friday: Fly to Belfast

Today we fly to Belfast, where upon arrival we transfer to the Merchant Hotel to check in for our four night stay. We enjoy dinner together at the hotel tonight.

Day 7
Saturday: Titanic Experience, Belfast and The Crown Bar

Belfast is still home to Harland & Wolff, the shipbuilders that built the Titanic, so it’s fitting that we visit the fantastic Titanic Experience that opened in 2012 to mark the centenary of the liner’s doomed maiden voyage.

We then take a guided tour of Northern Ireland’s capital. Belfast is now a thriving, modern city with a fascinating and sometimes turbulent history. It was also a key player in the Industrial Revolution, being the centre for the Irish linen and tobacco industries.

Afterwards there is the chance to enjoy a drink at the National Trust pub, The Crown Bar, arguably the most famous pub in Belfast. This iconic bar was originally the Railway Tavern, but was renamed in 1885 and still features period gas lighting and cosy snugs today. The rest of the afternoon is free to explore Belfast at leisure before we later enjoy dinner together at a restaurant in Belfast. 

Day 8
Sunday: Benvarden House, Giant’s Causeway and Glenarm Castle

Our day begins at Benvarden House, a historic estate set in beautiful grounds. The House has been home to the Montgomery family since 1798. We enjoy lunch together at the House.

Afterwards we join our coach for a glorious scenic coastal drive, time to sit back, relax and enjoy the passing views of the lush green countryside, unspoilt beaches and rolling Atlantic waves as we head to the Giant’s Causeway. These world-famous, enormous basalt columns were produced by volcanic eruptions some sixty million years ago, and are now a designated World Heritage Site. Interactive displays, exhibitions and audio guides in the state-of-the-art visitor centre unveil the stories and science that surround this natural phenomenon.

Our final stop for the day is at Glenarm Castle. Currently home to Viscount and Viscountess Dunluce and their family, the present castle has been in the McDonnell family since it was built in 1636. The house showcases examples of Irish furniture as well as portraits of the family throughout the years, starting from the 17th century right through to present day.

This evening is at leisure for you to explore the city and find somewhere for dinner.

Day 9
Monday: Castle Ward and Mount Stewart

Castle Ward, our first point of call today, is an eccentric 18th-century house that features a curious mixture of architectural styles and here we enjoy a guided tour. Set in 820 picturesque acres of demesne with superb views over Strangford Lough, the estate also has a stable yard that houses a tea room and second-hand bookshop.

The magnificent Mount Stewart House and Garden is our next stop. The recently restored family home offers a wealth of treasures while the wonderfully atmospheric garden has a distinct Mediterranean feel thanks to the exceptionally mild climate of nearby Strangford Lough.

Tonight we again enjoy dinner at a local restaurant. 

Day 10
Tuesday: Fly to Liverpool and Shugborough Estate

After breakfast we transfer to the airport for our flight back to Liverpool. Upon arrival we meet our coach and head to the Shugborough Estate, a rare survival of a complete estate that was returned to the care of the National Trust in 2017. With an operational Victorian servants’ quarter, dairy and Georgian Park Farm complete with watermill, this imposing 17th-century house is also a sensory treat, while the parkland is scattered with mysterious monuments.

Later we check back in to the New Hall Hotel & Spa ready for dinner.

Day 11
Wednesday: Oxford

Historic Oxford is known as the city of dreaming spires and is famed for its world-renowned university colleges. We enjoy a guided walking tour to learn more about this unique city, its history, university and famous people.

We then return to the Macdonald Windsor Hotel where we enjoy a farewell dinner together.

Day 12
Thursday: Departure

A private transfer will take you back to Heathrow airport for your return flight home.

Please note: the itinerary order is subject to change.

What’s Included
• Airport transfers from London Heathrow*
• Return flight from Liverpool to Belfast with airport transfers
• 2 nights at the Macdonald Windsor Hotel
• 2 nights at the New Hall Hotel
• 3 nights at a selected hotel in the Liverpool area
• 4 nights at the Merchant Hotel
• Welcome drink
• Full English breakfast each day
• 3-course table d’hôte dinner on 6 nights at the hotels (with after dinner tea      and coffee)
• 1 dinner at a restaurant in Liverpool
• 2 dinners at restaurants in Belfast
• Services of a tour director throughout your stay
• Travel to and from all excursions
• All excursion costs
• Porterage

*supplement applies for transfers from all other airports

Special extras included in your itinerary
• Lunch at Kenilworth Castle
• Guided tour of Arley Hall
• Guided tour of Liverpool
• Guided tour of Belfast
• Lunch at Benvarden House
• Guided tour of Castle Ward
• Guided walking tour of Oxford
• Themed evening talk by a guest speaker

Nights One and Eleven – Macdonald Windsor Hotel
The Macdonald Windsor Hotel is situated in the heart of the historic town of Windsor, opposite the famous Windsor Castle. The classic interiors, with a contemporary edge, fit perfectly with the Georgian elegance of this townhouse hotel. The luxury bedrooms are individually-designed and the hotel also offers a stylish bar and restaurant.

Nights Two and Ten – New Hall Hotel & Spa
A beautiful example of late medieval architecture, the New Hall Hotel & Spa is set in 26 acres of picturesque private grounds near Sutton Coldfield in the Midlands area. Facilities include a Health Club open to residents, a spa, a quality restaurant and a Terrace Lounge and Bar.

Nights Three to Five – A selected hotel, Liverpool area

Nights Six to Nine – The Merchant Hotel
The Merchant Hotel is located in the heart of Belfast’s city centre historic Cathedral Quarter. This grand, original, Grade A listed building is complemented by the Art Deco inspired wing within. The hotel offers a range of facilities including a luxury spa, rooftop gymnasium with panoramic views and a fabulous jazz bar.