England's Dark Ages
(June 14 - 21  &  Oct 11 - 18, 2020)
From Cultural Climax to Conquest – Anglo-Saxon England up to 1066. Known to generations of historians as ‘The Dark Ages’, there are five centuries in England’s early medieval history that very few explore. Yet, from the 6th to the 11th century England was a creative hub, producing some of the best minds, art and literature.
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England's Dark Ages

From Cultural Climax to Conquest – Anglo-Saxon England up to 1066

Tour Cost June 13, 2020 - $2404 Double/$2950 Single Cdn

Tour Cost Oct 10, 2020 - $2444 Double/$3005 Single Cdn

Known to generations of historians as ‘The Dark Ages’, there are five centuries in England’s early medieval history that very few explore. Yet, from the 6th to the 11th century England was a creative hub, producing some of the best minds, art and literature in the Western World. With that most seminal of dates – 1066 – the Norman Conquest would not only transform the nation, but would rewrite the history books.

On this journey from the iconic white cliffs of England’s south coast to the wild landscapes of Lindisfarne Priory near the Scottish border, we will discover the vibrant world of the Anglo-Saxons. We will see for ourselves their exquisite craftsmanship and learning from Bede and Beowulf, the bloody fields of Hastings and Stamford Bridge. Our tour will retrace ancient Saxon kingdoms, and cross over the boundary of Viking controlled territory into the Danelaw of the north, discovering how these ancient boundaries still dictate the geography of English counties today.

You will see the first stained glass window, the earliest English epic, and the finest illuminated manuscript ever made and will discover an era of history that was anything but “Dark”.


Key Features

  • Discover the most exceptional cultural and physical treasures of the Saxon era with medieval expert Dr Janina Ramirez, including the Sutton Hoo Treasures, England’s Tutankhamen’s tomb.
  • Explore both Saxon and Viking capital cities, and the battle sites of Hastings and Stamford Bridge which led to the end of the Saxon era in England at the time of the Norman Conquest.
  • Discover early Christian treasures from the Lindisfarne Gospels to the earliest Saxon church in England and visit the Holy Island of Lindisfarne which was home to St Cuthbert.

  • Want to know more?

  • Download the full itinerary for England's Dark Ages
  • Discover more tours – take a look at our inspiring Telling the Stories of England brochure.
  • Get in touch with us using the Enquire Now button.
  • Telephone our team on (604) 899-9249.

  • Day 1: (Sunday June 14th/Oct 11, 2020) - Arrive Gatwick Airport

    Group collect at one location at Gatwick Airport at 09.00.

    Introduced to Tour Manager, Tour Guide and Motorcoach Operator

    Travel east for admission to Battle Abbey (Battle of Hastings)

    On for admission to St Augustine’s Abbey

    Overnight Kent – welcome dinner in the hotel with half bottle of wine per person included

    Day 2: (Monday June 15th/Oct 12, 2020) - London

    Breakfast included in the hotel
    Travel by motor coach in to London.
    Visit included to British Museum – with museum guide for highlights tour
    Visit included to British Library Overnight London – dinner on own

    Day 3: (Tuesday June 16th/Oct 13, 2020) - Sutton Hoo

    Breakfast included in the hotel
    Travel east for admission to the new visitor centre for Sutton Hoo
    Travel for admission to Neolithic Grimes Graves step ladder climb to go inside
    Overnight York area (dinner included in the hotel)

    Day 4: (Wednesday June 17th/Oct 14, 2020) - York

    Breakfast included in the hotel
    Admission to York Minster and Undercroft Museum with Cathedral guide
    Overnight York area (dinner on own)

    Day 5: (Thursday June 18th/Oct 15, 2020) - County Durham

    Breakfast included in the hotel
    Morning pause at Stamford Bridge Battle Site (no visitor centre just a location)
    Admission to Escombe Church with church guide
    Admission to Durham Cathedral and Open Treasure Exhibition with cathedral guide
    Overnight Newcastle upon Tyne – dinner included in the hotel

    Day 6: (Friday June 19th/Oct 16, 2020) - Bede

    Breakfast included in the hotel
    Visit ruins of St Paul’s Monastery (St Bede)
    Visit St Paul’s church in Jarrow with stained glass
    Admission to Jarrow Hall Farm and Bede Museum which holds the Vulgate Bible
    Overnight Newcastle upon Tyne – dinner on own

    Day 7: (Saturday June 20th/Oct 17, 2020) - Hexham and Lindisfarne

    Breakfast included in the hotel
    Admission included to Hexham Priory associated with St Wilfrid with Abbey guide Cross tidal causeway to Lindisfarne for admission to Lindisfarne Priory
    Overnight Leeds area as closer to MAN airport but still a 2 hour transfer – farewell dinner included in the hotel with half a bottle of wine per person

    Day 7: (Sunday June 21th/Oct 18, 2020) - Departure Day

    Breakfast included in the hotel
    Included transfer to MAN Airport for departure – note transfer time above

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Group collect at one location at London Gatwick Airport at 09.00.

    Meet UK based tour manager (Booked by Select Travel Service
    Meet UK based History guide (Booked by Greg)
    Meet 35 seat motor coach and driver

    Travel east for admission to Leeds Castle (note private guided tours are only possible outside normal opening hour unless you guide knows differently?
    Overnight Kent – welcome dinner in the hotel with half bottle of wine per person included

    Group collect at one location at London Gatwick Airport at 09.00.

    Meet UK based tour manager (Booked by Select Travel Service
    Meet UK based History guide (Booked by Greg)
    Meet 35 seat motor coach and driver

    Travel east for admission to Leeds Castle (note private guided tours are only possible outside normal opening hour unless you guide knows differently?
    Overnight Kent – welcome dinner in the hotel with half bottle of wine per person included

    Group collect at one location at London Gatwick Airport at 09.00.

    Meet UK based tour manager (Booked by Select Travel Service
    Meet UK based History guide (Booked by Greg)
    Meet 35 seat motor coach and driver

    Travel east for admission to Leeds Castle (note private guided tours are only possible outside normal opening hour unless you guide knows differently?
    Overnight Kent – welcome dinner in the hotel with half bottle of wine per person included

    Group collect at one location at London Gatwick Airport at 09.00.

    Meet UK based tour manager (Booked by Select Travel Service
    Meet UK based History guide (Booked by Greg)
    Meet 35 seat motor coach and driver

    Travel east for admission to Leeds Castle (note private guided tours are only possible outside normal opening hour unless you guide knows differently?
    Overnight Kent – welcome dinner in the hotel with half bottle of wine per person included

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Day 1: (Sunday May 24th, 2020) - Overnight Kent

    Group collect at one location at London Gatwick Airport at 09.00.

    Meet UK based tour manager (Booked by Select Travel Service
    Meet UK based History guide (Booked by Greg)
    Meet 35 seat motor coach and driver

    Travel east for admission to Leeds Castle (note private guided tours are only possible outside normal opening hour unless you guide knows differently?
    Overnight Kent – welcome dinner in the hotel with half bottle of wine per person included

    Group collect at one location at London Gatwick Airport at 09.00.

    Meet UK based tour manager (Booked by Select Travel Service
    Meet UK based History guide (Booked by Greg)
    Meet 35 seat motor coach and driver

    Travel east for admission to Leeds Castle (note private guided tours are only possible outside normal opening hour unless you guide knows differently?
    Overnight Kent – welcome dinner in the hotel with half bottle of wine per person included

    Group collect at one location at London Gatwick Airport at 09.00.

    Meet UK based tour manager (Booked by Select Travel Service
    Meet UK based History guide (Booked by Greg)
    Meet 35 seat motor coach and driver

    Travel east for admission to Leeds Castle (note private guided tours are only possible outside normal opening hour unless you guide knows differently?
    Overnight Kent – welcome dinner in the hotel with half bottle of wine per person included

    Group collect at one location at London Gatwick Airport at 09.00.

    Meet UK based tour manager (Booked by Select Travel Service
    Meet UK based History guide (Booked by Greg)
    Meet 35 seat motor coach and driver

    Travel east for admission to Leeds Castle (note private guided tours are only possible outside normal opening hour unless you guide knows differently?
    Overnight Kent – welcome dinner in the hotel with half bottle of wine per person included

    Please choose June 13th or October 10, 2020 as your departure date.

    If you wish to make a deposit rather then full payment at this point to secure your seat with this tour, please CLICK here and go to the deposit page.
    If you wish to make a deposit rather then full payment at this point to secure your seat with this tour, please CLICK here and go to the deposit page.
    You may make a deposit reservation until 35 days before departure at which point the full amount is rquired to secure your reservation. The $400 deposit per person reservation is 100% refundabe until 90 days before the tour departure and 50% refundable between 90 and 60 days before tour departure. If you make a deposit reservation, you will receive a final payment email request fro the outstanding amount of your tour approximately 35 days before travel. All payments will be required by 60 days before departure. If you have questions or would like to speak with one of our travel specialists, please conact us at (604) 708-2527 or Toll Free: 1 855 900-9249.

    Services to be provided:

    Hotels

    • Canterbury – 1 night at The Abbotts Barton Hotel
    • London – 1 night at The Hilton Doubletree Docklands
    • York area – 1 night at the off centre York Holiday Inn
    • Newcastle – 2 nights at the Maldron Newcastle
    • Leeds – 1 night at The Hilton Leeds City Centre

    Meals

    • Full Cooked Breakfast daily in the hotels
    • Day 1 – welcome dinner with half bottle of wine per person in the hotel or within walking distance
    • Day 3 – Dinner in the hotel
    • Day 5 – Dinner in the hotel
    • Day 7 – Farwell dinner in Leeds with half bottle of wine per person in the hotel or within walking distance

    Admissions and other services included

    • Porterage of 1 bag person in and out of hotels only
    • Whispa headsets daily
    • Room, meals and fees for our tour manager.
    • Battle Abbey (1066 Battle site)
    • St Augustine’s Abbey
    • British Museum with museum guided highlights tour
    • Sutton Hoo Visitor Centre
    • Grimes Graves
    • York Minster and Undercroft museum with Minster guide
    • Stamford Bridge Battle Site location only
    • Escombe Church with church guide
    • Durham Cathedral with Open Treasure Exhibition and cathedral guide
    • Ruins of St Paul’s Monastery near Jarrow
    • St Paul’s Church Jarrow
    • Jarrow Hall Farm and Bede Museum
    • Hexham Priory with Priory guide
    • Lindisfarne Priory

    Not Included

    • Health, trip cancellation/interruption or baggage insurance. All are strongly recommended.
    • Passport & visa costs.
    • Items of a personal nature (hotel extras, laundry, phone calls etc.).
    • Items not specifically mentioned above.
    The availability of single rooms is dependent upon individual hotel properties and in some cases, where a large number of singles is required, it may be necessary to restrict reservations of single rooms. A Single suppliment fee is applied to all single bookings for individual rooms.
    We do our best to avoid or mitigate cancellation charges. All participants are strongly encouraged to take out cancellation insurance. Participants who are replaced will normally just incur an fee for the reissue of any airline tickets, typically in the range of $150-250. Event tickets or special pre paid activities or specific hotel deposits, may incur charges in addition to those listed below. If a cancelled participant is not replaced, the following maximum charges may be levied. Final Payment for all tour programs is due 90 days before Travel. After this date, full payment is required for all bookings and is non-refundable.
    UK Countryside Tours is a small, specialist tour operator that will help you travel beyond the boundaries of our great capital city, exploring the deeper and more authentic British regions. We will work hard to ensure you have a memorable, fulfilling and enjoyable stay. Our programmes are designed by our friendly team of tour directors, who are as passionate as we are about Telling the Stories of England.
    Through a shared interest in special places, art, literature, science and endeavour, combined with great food and special places to stay, we hope you will have a rich experience of the quintessential Britain.
    We work with the best suppliers of executive travel to maximise your comfort and safety whilst travelling. We have selected our accommodation, itinerary and catering with great care to ensure that you have a quality, relaxed and exclusive experience that will enlighten and entertain you.
    If we do not feel that the tour can go ahead to the standard we would want for reasons outside our control we will cancel, giving you a full refund of any money already paid to us.

    All breakfasts are full and include juices, tea and coffee. Programmed lunches and dinners include table water but do not include sodas, branded mineral water, wine, beer or other alcoholic beverages unless where stated.

    Our tours do not include items of a personal nature such as laundry, room service, telephone charges. Internet access charges or other hotel extras. All passengers are responsible for settling any such costs incurred before checking out of each hotel.

    If airline tickets are included in the agreement, they include all US, Canadian and European government taxes, airline taxes and fuel surcharges as levied as of the date of this proposal. In the event that additional taxes are introduced by national or local governing bodies or existing taxes increased, Select Travel may have to pass these on at the time of ticketing. Land prices include all local, city and state taxes/VAT levied as of the date of this proposal. Any changes to, or additional, government taxes will be passed on to the agent with the final invoice.

    We start from a simple premise. When you travel with us, we take responsibility for your safety and wellbeing. In return, we expect you to work constructively with our tour leaders, partners and the people who run the places we visit. We also expect you to tell us about anything that we need to know, such as any medical or other special needs, that may affect your experience of travelling with us.
    All of our tours are fully insured and compliant with UK tour operator legislation, although we would ask you to take out appropriate travel insurance that ensures that in the event of an accident or illness that you will get access to the best medical treatment and that you will be able to get home safely.
    We strongly recommend that all passengers are adequately insured for medical expenses, baggage loss or damage and trip cancellation or interruption. This is the responsibility of the booking agent. Optional medical, trip interruption and cancellation coverage is available through us and pricing and coverage details are available upon request. UK Countryside Tours is covered both in Canada by General Liability Insurance and Errors and Omissions Coverage in the amount of $2 million. Our UK operation carries coverage of £10 million.

    As of the time of going to print, US and Canadian citizens require a full and valid passport to enter the European Community. Entry visas are currently not required. Non US or Canadian Citizens may require an entry visa and should check with the appropriate local consulate offices, allowing good time to complete the necessary paperwork prior to departure. All travelers may require entry visas for countries outside the European Union e.g. Russia or former Soviet Union States.

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    Mildly active: getting on and off the coach and walking a short distance on well surfaced paths.
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    Moderately active: walking in the countryside / parkland estate of a country estate – walking moderate distances on unsurfaced paths.
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    Active: walking up hills, or destinations involving lots of steps, uneven surfaces, sturdy shoes needed.

    If UK Countryside Tours is unable to carry out all services due to circumstances beyond our control, we will do all possible to secure services of comparable or better standard or refund all monies in full. UK Countryside Tours accepts no responsibility for loss or additional expenses incurred due to delays, changes, omissions or errors made by our suppliers including but not limited to air, sea, ground transportation, war, weather, quarantine and strikes of Acts of God. All persons working with us will be deemed to have accepted the conditions contained herein by submitting the initial deposit. We have read this agreement and understand and agree to adhere to the terms and conditions herein. We agree that this supersedes all previous agreements and understandings both written and verbal and this document constitutes the entire agreement. All amendments or modifications to this agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties.


    Specialists

    *Expert Blue Badge Guide*

    Itinerary

    UKCT Brochure

    England's Dark Ages Brochure

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    Call for General Inquires
    Toll Free 1 855 900-9249
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    Email for General Inquires
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    Call for General Inquires
    (604)708-2527
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