Mighty Castle, Magnificent Palace: Windsor & Hampton Court 9 hours
The River Thames connects Hampton Court, a sprawling masterpiece of turrets and gardens, once home to the infamous King Henry VIII, with Windsor Castle, 15 miles upstream, a working royal palace for the past 1,000 years and much loved ‘out of town’ home to the Queen.
Windsor Castle: Changing of the Guard (mornings) – St George’s Chapel – Royal tombs, including that of King Henry VIII and Jane Seymour – State Apartments – Queen Mary’s Dolls’ House.
Hampton Court Palace: Tudor Kitchens – Great Hall – Haunted Gallery and Chapel Royal – Baroque palace – Great Vine and Maze.
Windsor Castle has been a royal palace for centuries. Your private tour of Windsor and Hampton Court includes the secrets of St George’s Chapel, home to the Knights of the Garter and burial place of kings; Queen Mary’s Dolls’ House and the sumptuous State Apartments still used for state occasions today.
Enjoy the Changing of the Guard and the views high above the river before exploring the Great Park with its deer and Long Walk, or visiting Eton to see the tailors’ shops and College, founded in 1440. Feel like a typical pub lunch or a treat in town? Consider it booked and the menu explained. Then enjoy the drive to Hampton Court.
Your Driver-Guide will bring the great Palace to life, with its brick courtyards, cavernous kitchens and working 16th-century clock. Admire Henry VIII’s Great Hall and Chapel Royal but spare a thought for young Catherine Howard, whose ghost haunts the gallery outside, begging for her life, and for Cardinal Wolsey, whose dream palace was annexed by the King. As part of our guided tours of Windsor and Hampton Court, you’ll also get the opportunity to see the oldest vine in England, the royal tennis court and the maze before exploring the Baroque apartments with their fine staircases, and priceless paintings.