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CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW & THE GARDENS OF ENGLAND

12 – 26 May 2023

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ITINERARY
Come with us to an England up to its knees in spring blossom, carpets of bluebells and meadows of wildflowers. Our England tour includes the beautiful Cornish Coast, Oxford, Cotswolds, Bath and London. It’s a mix of heavenly gardens with special tickets to Opening Day at the Chelsea Flower Show.

DAY 1
Friday 12 May 2023
Home to London

Check-in at Sydney International Airport, Terminal 1, for our Qantas flight to London. (Or meet in Bath on Day 2)

DAY 2
Saturday 13 May 2023
Iford Manor (D)

Arrive into London Heathrow and meet your Ross Tour Leader, Colin Barlow and our local guide. Head directly to Bath for the next two nights. Check into our hotel, a ten-minute walk from the city centre. Bath was built by the Romans for pleasure and relaxation, and it’s been a well-being destination ever since. Afternoon visit to Iford Manor, built on a terraced slope above the River Frome by Harold Peto. It’s a gem, highly structured and well planted; Italianate in style with stone loggia, statues and architectural fragments giving its nod to antiquity. Welcome dinner included this evening.

Accommodation: MacDonald Bath Spa Hotel, Bath

DAY 3
Sunday 14 May 2023
Bishop’s Palace, Wells (B)

Drive through the Mendip Hills of Somerset to Englands smallest cathedral city, Wells. These hills extend almost to the Bristol Channel. It’s an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The grand Bishop’s Palace has been home to the Bishops of Bath and Wells for over 800 years. We will see the medieval palace and its gardens which are hidden within the ancient ramparts and protected by the moat. Wells Cathedral is one of the most beautiful gothic Cathedrals in England. Don’t miss Vicars’ Close, built over 650 years ago to house the Vicars Choral and continuously inhabited by their successors. It’s unique, physically connected to Wells Cathedral and the most complete example of a medieval Close in Europe.

Accommodation: MacDonald Bath Spa Hotel, Bath

DAY 4
Monday 15 May 2023
Bath to Cornwall (B/D)

Head south today through Somerset and Devon to Cornwall, stopping in North Devon to visit RHS Garden Rosemoor in Torrington. This garden was handed to the RHS in 1990 and has been developed as a sophisticated series of garden spaces. There’s lots to see; formal gardens, herbaceous borders, fruit and vegetable potager, arboretum, stream and bog garden and Alpine house. But the oldest part, Lady Palmer’s house and garden are the most charming. Rosemoor hosts the National Collection of dogwoods, which should be in peak flower.
This afternoon we’ll travel onto Cornwall and check into our hotel on the Cornish Coast for the next 3 nights, overlooking Carlyon Bay. Dinner included this evening.

Accommodation: Carlyon Bay Hotel, Cornwall

DAY 5
Tuesday 16 May 2023
Eden Project (B)

The revolutionary Eden Project is first this morning with an area under glass the size of 30 football fields, growing the plants of each climatic zone in each environmentally controlled space. These biomes are the massive backdrop for exciting contemporary gardens.
The great house at Lanhydrock stands in its magnificent estate above the River Fowey with a splendid suite of gardens: formal parterres of intense colour bedding, circular perennial garden, herbaceous borders, woodland plantings of magnolias, rhododendrons and carpets of bluebells. Take time to explore the winding woodland and you will see some impressive flowering trees. We’ll visit the beautiful seaside town of Fowey on the way back to our hotel.

Accommodation: Carlyon Bay Hotel, Cornwall

DAY 6
Wednesday 17 May 2023
Cornwall Gardens (B/D)

To Caerhays, a castle by the sea! This treasure trove of plants gathered in 19th century expeditions through China includes camellias, magnolias, rhododendrons, azaleas and viburnum. Picturesque in its sublime location on the Cornish Coast. A treat this afternoon as we discover The Lost Gardens of Heligan, asleep for 70 years under a blanket of ivy, bramble and rampant laurel. It’s the largest garden restoration project in Europe. Heligan, the seat of the Tremayne family for more than 400 years, became neglected during the First World War. The chance discovery of a door in the ruins led to the triumphant restoration by Sir Tim Smit (of the Eden Project). We’ll see enormous tree-like rhododendrons that were part of the original Victorian pleasure garden, grown from seed collected by Sir Joseph Hooker himself (one of the great plant hunters). The Lost Gardens have been put back where they belong, in pride of place among the finest gardens in Cornwall. Dinner included tonight.

Accommodation: Carlyon Bay Hotel, Cornwall

DAY 7
Thursday 18 May 2023
Cornwall to Oxford (B/L/D)

Travel through Devon and into Somerset to Hestercombe Garden for lunch. It’s a remarkable example of the collaboration between Sir Edwin Lutyens and Gertrude Jekyll. Lutyens was probably the most famous British architect since Sir Christopher Wren. His hallmarks are everywhere: iris choked rills, semi-circular steps, pergolas and his sympathetic use of local materials.

Afternoon arrival into the University town of Oxford and check into our hotel for the next four nights. Dinner included tonight.

Accommodation: Randolf Hotel, Oxford

DAY 8
Friday 19 May 2023
Pettifers Garden (B/L)

Visit Gina Price’s stylish garden Pettifers, outside of Oxford. With impeccable attention to colour, texture and form, Gina and head gardener Polly, have made a contemporary garden within a classic structure. Lots of take-home ideas here.
This afternoon we’ll discover the Cotswolds Village of Bibury, described by William Morris as “the most beautiful village in England”. Our hosts open the gates to their unique private gardens, with afternoon tea included.

Accommodation: Randolf Hotel, Oxford

DAY 9
Saturday 20 May 2023
Hidcote & Blenheim Palace (B/L)

Hidcote Manor is our destination this morning, as we travel back through the rolling landscapes of the Cotswolds. We’ll discover why this Arts and Crafts garden of Lawrence Johnston, made between the two World Wars, has been so influential. We’ll lose ourselves in the ‘scratch and sniff’ series of garden rooms and learn how evergreen hedges define these garden rooms. Lunch included today. Blenheim Palace is grand, influential and a showpiece for landscape architect Capability Brown and architect Sir John Vanbrugh. And it’s the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill; Churchill’s grandfather was the 7th Duke of Marlborough, and his extravagant palace at Blenheim was England’s answer to Versailles. We’ll take a guided tour through the palace and gardens to help us fully appreciate their significance.

Accommodation: Randolf Hotel, Oxford

DAY 10
Sunday 21 May 2023
Waterperry Gardens (B/L)

At Waterperry Gardens we visit an exciting complex of Formal Garden, Waterlily Canal, herbaceous borders, long colour border, and rose garden that was once a horticultural college for women. Visitors love it; plants are well labelled. Afternoon walking tour through historic Oxford.

Accommodation: Randolf Hotel, Oxford

DAY 11
Monday 22 May 2023
Oxford to London (B/L)

We are heading to Hampshire today with lunch included at West Green House, the home and garden of famous Aussie expat Marylyn Abbott. While the garden pays homage to its 18th-century origins, Marylyn’s sense of fun is given plenty of room to play. And her energy is unstoppable; the latest ‘Garden of the Five Bridges’ solves the problem of water draining from fields beyond with a 190m serpentine windrush draining water into the lake; all with exquisite planting scheme. The potager is beautiful and productive with two soft fruit cages at its heart and roses, clematis and honeysuckle smothering the walls. It is a special treat. Lunch included today. Travel on to London and check into the Royal Garden Hotel in Kensington for the next 2 nights.

Accommodation: Royal Garden Hotel, Kensington

DAY 12
Tuesday 23 May 2023
Oxford to London (B/D)

‘Opening Day’ at the Chelsea Flower Show is reserved for VIPs and members of the Royal Horticultural Society. We have arranged tickets so that you can enjoy it without the crowds that flock on public days. Meet our favourite designers and exhibitors, enjoy the multi million-dollar show gardens. You might like to sip a Pimm’s in the shade and gasp at the flower displays in the Great Pavilion. Share the day’s highlights tonight at our farewell dinner in the hotel.

Accommodation: Royal Garden Hotel, Kensington

DAY 13
Wednesday 24 May 2023
London to Home (B)

Today is free for you to explore London and soak up the British vibe of this dynamic capital. Late afternoon transfer to London Heathrow Airport.

DAY 14
Thursday 25 May 2023
Inflight
DAY 15
Friday 26 May 2023
Arrive home


HOW TO BOOK

To secure your booking and make your deposit, please complete our online booking form. You will be contacted by a Ross Tours Travel Manager to confirm your details and preferred method of payment.

CANCELLATIONS

Cancellations received 180-120 days prior to departure will incur loss of deposit.

Cancellations received between 119-60 days prior to departure will incur a 50% cancellation fee.
Cancellations received between 59-30 days prior to departure will incur a 75% cancellation fee plus any non-recoverable costs incurred.
Cancellations received within 30 days prior to departure will incur 100% cancellation fee.
Cancellations must be sent in writing.
Cancellation fee is based upon the total amounts paid including tours, airfares and all other travel arrangements.

Please refer to the Ross Garden Tours standard terms and conditions.

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TOUR INCLUSIONS
TOUR ESCORTED BY
COLIN BARLOW
  • Qantas return economy group airfare & taxes Sydney – London – Sydney
  • Air-conditioned motorcoach throughout tour
  • Deluxe accommodation for 11 nights
  • Breakfast daily, 4 lunches and 5 dinners
  • Entrance fees to all gardens and sightseeing including Iford Manor, Bishop’s Palace, RHS Rosemoor, Eden Project, Lanhydrock, Lost Gardens of Heligan, Caerhays Estate, Hestercombe, Waterperry Gardens, Bibury Village Gardens, Hidcote Manor, Blenheim Palace Gardens, Oxford tour, West Green Gardens, Members Day at The RHS Chelsea Flower Show
TOUR PRICE

Twin Share land only $10,995 per person
Twin Share inclduing air $12,895 per person
Single Supplement $2,595

All prices in Australian Dollars. Prices based on minimum 15 passengers.
Price is based on departure Sydney.

DISCOUNTS

Early Bird $300.00 (Book & pay in full by 15/12/2022)
Previous Traveller $100.00
Garden Clinic Member $50.00

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