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  New tour for 2021  

  1. Day 1 Arrival and Rail to Cardiff

    After arriving into Heathrow or Gatwick Airports, validate your BritRail Passes and travel by rail to the vibrant Welsh capital city of Cardiff, your base for the next three nights. Drop your bags at your hotel begin by wandering the Edwardian baroque architecture of Cathays Park, home to the national museum and gallery of Wales. Then explore the Victorian market and shopping arcades or tour the famous Millennium Stadium home of the Welsh national rugby team. Not to be missed is the city's magnificent centrepiece at Cardiff Castle which combines Roman walls and Norman tower with a gloriously lavish Victorian mansion.

    Overnight: Cardiff

    Journey details: 20 minutes to London (via Gatwick/ Heathrow Express) and London Underground, followed by 2 hours to Cardiff (approx.)*

  2. Day 2 Cardiff Bay and Caerphilly Castle

    A short train ride from the centre is the cosmopolitan Cardiff Bay; once the largest coal port in the world the rejuvenated “bay” is now home to a host of sites including the seat of Welsh government, the Millennium Centre, the Victorian Pierhead building and Norwegian Church. By afternoon you may choose to take a local bus or taxi to the open-air museum at St Fagan’s which showcases Welsh life through the ages, or take a short train ride to nearby Caerphilly to see the magnificent ruins of the 13th century fortress at Caerphilly Castle complete with concentric moat and leaning tower.

    Overnight: Cardiff

    Meals: Breakfast included

  3. Day 3 Rail to Fishing Town of Tenby

    Today board the train and head West passing firstly through industrial South Wales then into the rolling hills of Carmarthenshire. Make your way in to one of the nation's most scenic corners, Pembrokeshire, a peninsula home to almost two hundred miles of protected coastline. Head for Tenby, your base for the next two nights; Tenby is one of Wales’ best kept secrets, home to a bustling natural harbour, Norman Castle and city walls, a labyrinth of cobbled streets and flanked by far reaching, sparkling sandy bays.

    Overnight: Tenby

    Meals: Breakfast included

    Journey details: 3 hours (approx.)*

  4. Day 4 Pembrokeshire Towns and Villages

    With Tenby as your base today you can make some short rail journeys to visit nearby towns and villages of Pembrokeshire. You may like to head along the coastline to the harbour village of Saundersfoot to sample a traditional fish ‘n’ chips on the seafront or inland to the tiny village of Lamphey; home to an historic Bishop's Palace. Alternatively, make your way inland to the town of Pembroke to visit the imposing medieval fortress at Pembroke Castle.

    Overnight: Tenby

    Meals: Breakfast included

  5. Day 5 Rail to Historic Shrewsbury

    Today embark on a rail journey to the historic town of Shrewsbury – on route you’ll either pass through central Wales and the Brecon Beacons National Park on the Heart of Wales line or through the rolling hills of the Welsh Border Marches. Arriving in the English border town of Shrewsbury you can explore this traditional market town of Tudor timberwork buildings. Climb to the unique red sandstone castle, home to a local museum, gallery and gardens, spot the Charles Darwin Monument or visit Shrewsbury Abbey which inspired the stories and television series of medieval monk Brother Cadfael.

    Overnight: Shrewsbury

    Meals: Breakfast included

    Journey details: 5 hours 15 minutes (approx.)*

  6. Day 6 Rail to the Coast of West Wales

    Take the train from Shrewsbury all the way to the coast of Wales, – Cardigan Bay – to the Victorian resort town of Aberystwyth. Here you can stroll along the elegant mile long promenade and where you’ll also find the intriguing National Library of Wales. The seafront also boasts the oldest pier in Wales (it was built in 1864), which offers the second-best vantage point of Aberystwyth. For the best views, take Britain’s longest cliffside railway up to the world’s largest obscura camera, which provides a bird’s eye view of more than 1000 square miles, in a 360 degree sweep around Aberystwyth.

    Overnight: Aberystwyth

    Meals: Breakfast included

    Journey details: 2 hours (approx.)*

  7. Day 7 Vale of Rheidol Railway and Devil’s Bridge

    Board the Edwardian restored steam change take in the changing dramatic countryside scenery from wide open fields and meadows to woodlands and rugged mountains. Listen to the sound of a powerful narrow-gauge steam locomotive working hard to climb 700ft to Devils Bridge; home of the famous waterfalls, nestled in the magnificent Cambrian Mountains. With nature trails, waterfalls and 3 bridges it is easy to see what inspired poets such as William Wordsworth.

    Overnight: Aberystwyth

    Meals: Breakfast included

  8. Day 8 Rail to the Italian Portmeirion

    Today you’ll embark on an incredibly scenic rail journey hugging the coast of West Wales from Aberystwyth to Portmeirion. Designed by Sir Clough Williams-Ellis in the early 20th century, Portmeirion's Riviera inspired houses, ornamental garden and campanile are a beautiful pocket of madness like no other. Be sure to explore its variety of shops, cafes, colourful buildings, picturesque piazza, exhibitions and audio-visual displays. Get lost in the 70 acres of exotic woodlands with 19 miles of pathways which cut through forests, secret spaces and coastal coves. No visit to Portmeirion Village would be complete without making it down to see the Amis Reunis, or "Friends Reunited", the famous "Stone Boat" of Portmeirion.

    Overnight: Portmeirion

    Meals: Breakfast included

    Journey details: 3 hours (approx.)*

  9. Day 9 Harlech Beach and Castle

    A short rail journey to Harlech will transport you to stretching beaches and dunes, artisan ice cream shops and the steepest street in the world; Ffordd Pen Llech. From Harlech you will find some of Wales’ best walks and hikes with outstanding views of the soaring Snowdonia National Park to one side of you and the wild, untameable crashing waves of the Irish sea to the other. The highlight of this town, however, is undoubtedly the UNESCO World Heritage Site; Harlech Castle. Perhaps one of Edward I’s mightiest fortress, standing atop the craggy cliffside surrounded by fortress walls and crashing waves, for the first time in over 600 years you can now cross the ‘floating’ bridge to take you inside its defences.

    Overnight: Portmeirion

    Meals: Breakfast included

  10. Day 10 Welsh Highland Railway and Caernarfon Castle

    Today you will experience the UK’s longest heritage steam railway, sit back a relax whilst you take in the 25 miles of breath-taking views from the stunning Aberglaslyn Pass to the picture postcard village of Beddgelert and around the foot of Wales’ highest peak, Mt Snowdon. Arriving in Caernarfon you will notice the towns narrow streets and the stylish redeveloped waterfront but what will catch your attention most is one of the worlds greatest buildings from the middle ages, seemingly rising out of the banks, protecting its ancient inhabitants from the dangers of the elements as well as the human threats of their time. Caernarfon Castle, another of Edward I’s fortress palaces but this one stands apart from the others from the sheer scale and dramatic architecture, echoing the imperial romans.

    Overnight: Caernarfon

    Meals: Breakfast included

    Journey details: 2 hours 20 minutes (approx.)*

  11. Day 11 Ffestiniog Railway and Llandudno

    Back onto the Welsh Highland Railway skirting around the base of Snowdon, change onto the Ffestiniog Railway - the world’s oldest narrow gauge railway - this time climbing the mountainside over 700 feet from sea level exposing unique views as you pass through tranquil pastures, magnificent forests, past lakes and waterfalls. Reaching Blaenau Ffestiniog, change onto the mainline and head south along the Conwy Valley line to the beautiful Victorian resort town of Llandudno, home to elegant architecture, a Victorian pier and the oldest working cable tramway in Britain which offers trips to the summit of the Great Orme.

    Overnight: Llandudno

    Meals: Breakfast included.

    Journey details: 5 hours 30 minutes (approx.)*

  12. Day 12 Conwy and Conwy Castle

    Take the short rail journey to Conwy; a true hidden gem that has been granted UNESCO World Heritage Site status, Conwy is a town seemingly frozen in time with its traditional market square encased in stunningly preserved medieval town walls and an imposing 13th century fortress. Thanks to restored spiral staircases in its great towers you can walk a complete circuit around the battlements of Conwy Castle. We highly recommend it. This is one of the most magnificent medieval fortresses in Europe.

    Overnight: Llandudno

    Meals: Breakfast included.

  13. Day 13 Rail to London and Icons of London

    Today return over the border and through the heart of England to London to explore the stunning English Capital. London is a thriving metropolis with a vibrant modern culture and rich history and heritage. Explore world renowned sights including Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, Buckingham Palace and Trafalgar Square. In the East of the city you’ll find the Tower of London and St Paul’s Cathedral. By evening why not take a flight on the London Eye for spectacular views of the city skyline.

    Overnight: London

    Meals: Breakfast included.

    Journey details: 3 hours and 40 minutes (approx.)*

  14. Day 14 Day Trips from London

    Today is free to continue exploring the history of the English capital. Perhaps visit one of the world-famous art galleries or museums such as the Victoria & Alebert Museum, the Natural History Museum or the British Museum. Your rail pass and the convenient rail connections of London offer opportunities to visit dozens of towns and cities on day trips out of the city; these would include the medieval university cities of Oxford and Cambridge, the cathedral cities of Salisbury and Canterbury or the coastal towns of Brighton and Portsmouth.

    Overnight: London

    Meals: Breakfast included.

  15. Day 15 Return Home

    Today bid farewell to the UK as you board the Heathrow or Gatwick Express rail links to take you back to your departure airport.

    Meals: Breakfast included.

*Journey times and distances are estimates and are based on the direct route between the start location and end location for each day of the itinerary, where applicable. They do not include detours or stops for sightseeing.

What's included

  • 14 nights’ accommodation (suggested accommodations listed below).
  • Full cooked regional breakfast each morning.
  • Britrail Consecutive (15 day) – Passes offer 15 days days of travel on the British National Rail Network. Travel is fully flexible and completely unlimited on each day of use and will cover all outlined rail journeys including transit on the Heathrow or Gatwick Express rail links.
  • Vale of Rheidol Heritage Steam Train.
  • Welsh Highland Railway Steam Train.
  • Ffestiniog Railway Steam Train.
  • Admission to the following attractions on your itinerary:
    • CADW Wales Explorer Pass (7 in 14 days) Passes offer admission to dozens of historic sites, castles and attractions across Wales including Caerphilly Castle, Caernarfon Castle and Conwy Castle.
    • Cardiff Castle in Cardiff.
  • Adeo travel documents pack and suggested rail schedule information for each of your point-to-point journeys including journey durations and departure stations and travel departure times etc.
  • Toll-free calls (from USA and Canada) to your Britain vacation specialist whilst planning your trip.
  • Expert assistance during the planning of your trip and local out-of-hours number for use during travel.

Suggested accommodations

  • Lincoln House Hotel, Cardiff x 2 nights
  • Park Hotel, Tenby x 2 nights
  • Prince Rupert Hotel, Shrewsbury x 1 night
  • Gwesty Cymru, Aberystwyth x 2 nights
  • Castell Deudraeth or Portmeirion Hotel, Portmeirion x 2 nights
  • Celtic Royal Hotel, Caernarfon x 1 night
  • Dunoon Hotel or St George’s Hotel, Llandudno x 2 nights
  • Mornington Hotel, London x 2 nights

As our rail tours are fully customizable we can tailor the suggested accommodations for your particular quotation based on your preferences, budget etc.

 

Unless otherwise requested all suggested accommodations for our rail tours will be within walking distance or a short taxi journey from the local railway station.

Optional extras

  • Upgrade your rail passes for First Class Travel – first class carriages are available on many inter-regional services across Britain.
  • Purchase London Oyster travel cards for flexible travel around London on its underground rail network.
  • Upgrade your heritage Rail journeys to First Class

Customize this tour!

  • Add additional nights in Cardiff to take additional day-tours in to the South Wales countryside including the Brecon Beacons or Gower Peninsula.
  • Combine this tour with one of our other Britain rail tours.

Exclusions

  • Travel on the London Underground rail network – these are separate to the national rail network and your Britail Passes will not be valid.
  • Taxis / transfers from train stations to your hotels – taxis are readily available at all major train stations in the UK and hotel receptions / concierges will be happy to call local taxi firms for collection on days of departure.
  • Trip Insurance – we ask that our guests purchase suitable cover in case planned travel is affected or disrupted due to unforeseen circumstances. More information on the benefits of trip insurance can be found here.
  • Flights – adeo Travel do not book air travel but are happy to offer advice on where to seek competitive airfare.
  • Meals and/or sightseeing other than that outlined above.

Departure Dates 2020/21

This self-guided tour is customizable and can be taken at any time throughout the year and starting and ending on any day of the week - simply let us know your preferred dates of travel!

Pricing 2020/21

Twin/Double - from GBP £1750 per person.

Single supplements apply for solo travellers – please contact us for details.

Pricing Notes

  • Above pricing is an estimated "from" price based on mid-season travel (March/April). As this tour can be taken at any time pricing will vary dependent on departure day, date of travel, selected accommodations etc.
  • Above pricing is based on suggested accommodations listed however please note that we can tailor your specific quote to accommodate your budget and preferences.
  • Prices are per person based on two people sharing a twin/double room with one adult Britrail pass per person as specified. (Please enquire for single supplement)
  • Prices are for land only travel and do not include flights.
  • Prices are in GBP£ currency, for approximate amounts in other currencies please contact us.
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