Hampton Court Garden Festival
Sissinghurst Castle Garden
Hampton Court Garden Festival
English Summer Gardens with Hampton Court Garden Festival – Sorry – this tour is now fully booked. If you would like to be added to the waiting list, please email us: email@example.com
Sunday 3rd July – Friday 8th July 2022 (5 nights)
This spectacular high-season tour explores some of our very best English gardens and houses. Our base is the historic and luxurious Hever Castle and we will enjoy extraordinary gardens in their full profusion, private tours, fascinating historic houses, attractive scenery and experience members-only day at the RHS Hampton Court Garden Festival – the largest of its kind in the world.
- Members only day at RHS Hampton Court Garden Festival
- Pre-opening guided tours of Sissinghurst Castle garden and Great Dixter
- Visit to a fascinating private garden in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
- 5 night stay at the medieval, moated Hever Castle with exclusive after-hours access to the gardens
- Exclusive lunch and garden tour at Gravetye Manor
- Visit to Great Comp, curated by the salvia specialist, William Dyson
- Tour of the RHS Gardens at Wisley
Photo credits: Great Dixter and Gravetye Manor copyright of Claire Takacs; Great Comp copyright Peter Davin;
Our tour departs Heathrow Airport mid-morning, or join us at Penshurst Place, a wonderful 13th century fortified manor house with an 11-acre, formal, Grade I listed garden. We have a tour of the gardens followed by lunch (independent).
Later we check into the very special Hever Castle, the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, second wife of King Henry VIII. Marvel at this double-moated castle and its garden, with a 35-acre lake, fountains and magnificent original Roman and Italian Renaissance statuary. We have a private tour of the castle after it closes to the public, followed by dinner in the Tudor Dining Suite (included). Guests are able to explore parts of the grounds at Hever Castle after the castle closes.
Monday 4th July
This morning we enjoy a visit to Nymans Garden, one of the most fashionable and romantic gardens of the Edwardian and interwar years, and the creation of the Messel family. The house was devastated by fire, leaving just a romantic ruin to dominate the garden. There is time to explore the gardens and the part of the house that escaped the fire.
We then head to Gravetye Manor, the home of William Robinson, author, botanist and gardener. Gravetye is considered to be amongst the most influential in English gardening history, as Robinson’s ideas about naturalised planting were ground breaking. The house is now an independently owned hotel. We are treated to lunch in the hotel restaurant (included), followed by a guided tour of the gardens. We return to Hever Castle for a traditional English Afternoon Tea (included).
Tuesday 5th July
Tuesday is the prestigious, members-only day of the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival, the largest flower show in the world. It is a highlight every time this world-class show is in our itinerary. Set in the immense grounds of Hampton Court Palace, you can explore magnificent floral displays, extraordinary show gardens, or listen to entertaining live music and gardening talks. If you need a quiet moment, step into the beautiful Palace gardens adjacent. Lunch is at leisure at the show (independent). We return to Hever Castle for dinner (included).
Wednesday 6th July
We start the day with a pre-opening guided tour of Great Dixter House and Garden, a cottage garden on a grand scale. The well-known gardening writer and lecturer Christopher Lloyd, who developed the garden until his death in 2006, liked to tease the followers of garden fashion with bold experimentation. The gardens are now superbly managed by internationally renowned gardener, Fergus Garrett. There is free time at Great Dixter for lunch (independent).
In the afternoon we visit a nearby private home with an impressive award-winning hillside garden. Set within an 80-acre estate, this compact and richly planted garden includes distinct areas including a water garden, a Japanese garden, a woodland garden and a walled vegetable garden. The numerous grasses provide glorious texture and colour. This evening, we stroll up to the local pub at Hever for dinner (included).
Thursday 7th July
Today we begin with a ‘pre-opening’ tour of Sissinghurst Castle, a romantic garden created around a slender brick-built castle tower – this is always one of our most enjoyed visits. Its designer Vita Sackville-West’s own words describe the garden: “Profusion, even extravagance and exuberance within the confines of the utmost linear severity”. There will be free time for lunch (independent) and exploration of the gardens.
In the afternoon we have time to explore Great Comp Garden, an enormous achievement by two people who retired in 1957 from a busy London life. This is an informal garden set against a background of deciduous woodland. The gardens are now cared for by curator, William Dyson, the UK’s leading Salvia expert so you’ll see wonderful herbaceous borders and unusual plants. We return to Hever Castle for our final night dinner in the Castle Dining Room (included).
Friday 8th July
For our final visit of the tour, we go to RHS Wisley, the home of the Royal Horticultural Society. Full of ideas and information, the garden delights and inspires in any season of the year. We enjoy a guided tour so you’ll be sure to see the very best of these impressive gardens. We stay for lunch (independent) at Wisley.
Note: This tour includes one year’s individual membership of the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS).
Have you ever dreamed of staying at an English Castle? Well, here is your chance. Our luxury accommodation for this five-night tour will be the Astor Wing, an Edwardian wing designed in the Tudor style attached to Hever Castle by an enclosed bridge over the moat. The comfortably appointed accommodation offers antique furnishings and original features along with all the modern comforts required – ensuite bathrooms, wifi and luxury textiles. We will have exclusive use of the Astor wing during our stay. There is an outdoor heated pool, tennis court and billiards room for your exclusive use. Guests can access parts of the garden when the castle and grounds are closed to the public.
|Tour cost per person (sharing twin or double room)||Single supplement (for single occupancy of a double room)|
|£3,800 (GBP)||£350 (GBP)|
- 5 nights’ accommodation at Hever Castle’s Astor Wing with en-suite facilities.
- Breakfast daily, 1 lunch and 5 dinners.
- All garden visits including tours with garden owners and head gardeners.
- All tour gratuities (driver, tour director and hotels).
- One year’s individual membership of the RHS
- Deluxe coach travel with professional driver.
- Transfers to and from Hever Castle to Heathrow Airport at the start and end of the tour.
- Gift information pack with detailed information about the gardens we will be visiting.
- Services of your Sisley tour director throughout
- Passport and/or visa fees if applicable.
- Meals not included in the tour, drinks, laundry, and telephone calls.
TOUR PAYMENT: A 10% deposit is requested at the time of booking to secure your place on the tour. Your tour balance payment is due 90 days prior to tour departure.
EXCHANGE RATE INFORMATION: You can get an idea of the cost of the tour in your local currency by using a currency converter. Conversion rates are based on institutional or inter-bank daily rates. Retail conversion rates include fees and will generally differ from these rates.
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