A Very English Christmas - December 9 - 18, 2023 - $3235.00 per person
A Very English Christmas
Reveling in British Yuletide Festivities
December 9 – 18, 2023 – 8 Nights
Come along with Your Man in Europe on the perfect Christmastime journey. Our traveling party will begin in fabulous York, England, a city that has kept its old-world charm through the centuries. The ancient streets will make you feel as if you’ve stepped right into “A Christmas Carol” or “Oliver Twist”. Then we return to jolly old London to see the enchanting , extravagant Christmas decorations, take in West End plays and special holiday events, and do a little Christmas shopping. Our travelers will be steeped in holiday cheer and unequalled yuletide atmosphere. Don’t miss this unique Christmastime experience!
Note that the following itinerary does not detail all our day-by-day activities. Most of England’s annual holiday special events have not yet announced their schedules, and tickets were not available at the time this itinerary was planned (January, 2023). As more information is made available and events are added tickets will be purchased, and our included activities will be booked. Updated itinerary information will be provided as event dates are confirmed.
December 9, Saturday – Depart the USA on flights to London Heathrow Airport. Guests are asked to plan flights to arrive at Heathrow by 11:00 AM on Sunday, December 10. For those flying into Gatwick Airport, please check with Your Man in Europe to arrange a meeting point.
December 10, Sunday – Guests should arrive before 11:00 AM at London’s Heathrow Airport. We will rendezvous at the airport and travel together into the city center, where we’ll board our fast train to fabulous York. During our wonderfully scenic ride we’ll enjoy a nice “train picnic”
Our First-Class train ride takes us into the heart of the fabled city, only a short taxi ride to our cozy hotel in the shadow of the great York Minster. No movie set or fanciful preconceived notion could exceed the ambiance of our historic boutique hotel right in the old town. The hotel itself is a memorable experience! After settling in we’ll take a casual walk around the local area to learn about our nearby surroundings and how to navigate to old city center, followed by a little free time before meeting at our cozy hotel for a hearty dinner together before snuggling into our beds for a good night’s sleep.
December 11, Monday - After breakfast in the atmospheric dining room of the hotel we’ll take a short walk to visit the St. Nicholas Fair for some real Christmas fun. Traditional chalets shine out from their positions along Parliament Street where we’ll find plenty of stalls selling locally-made handcrafted gifts. We’ll also explore Davygate and Coppergate for inspired gift and stocking filler ideas for the folks back home; and we’ll find local flavor at York’s famous Shambles Market. We’ll have a fun lunch together in the heart of the old city.
In the late afternoon we’ll make our way to the York Minster for a wonderful choral Evensong service sung by the famous York Minster School’s choir.
Ticketed events for afternoons and evenings are to be determined. Updates will be provided as soon as special events are confirmed and tickets become available. Dinner will be on your own.
December 12, Tuesday - Enjoy breakfast at our cozy hotel, and then venture out for a day of free time in York. Along the way everyone will have seen things to include on a wish list. Spend the day shopping, exploring, or just kicking back at the hotel. It’s a great day to catch up on Christmas shopping for gifts you won’t find anywhere but York!
Lunch and dinner will be on your own today. If you want to be steeped in Christmas festivities, there is no better place than York!
Once again, ticketed events for afternoons and evenings are to be determined. Updates will be provided as soon as special events are confirmed and tickets become available, and key events will be included in the tour cost. The itinerary daily schedules are likely to be rearranged to accommodate the many delightful Christmas events York has to offer.
December 13, Wednesday - MMMM, another great breakfast at our hotel. Today we’ll make our way to the fantastic York Castle Museum. We’ll experience hundreds of years of York’s history in one place – from recreated Jacobean dining rooms to a whole Victorian era street all decked out for Christmas. Lunch and Dinner together will be included today.
Again, ticketed events for afternoons and evenings are to be determined. Updates will be provided as soon as special events are confirmed and tickets become available. The itinerary daily schedules are likely to be rearranged to accommodate the many delightful Christmas events York has to offer.
December 14, Thursday – After another delicious breakfast at our hotel we’ll board our fast train to London. Once there we will already catch glimpses of the festive holiday decorations as we make our way to our fantastic London hotel. The elegant, high-end boutique hotel is housed in a lovely home built in 1718. Each room is decorated in a unique way, and guests feel as if they are visiting a fine London home rather than a hotel. It’s the perfect place to set the tone for an Olde English Christmas!
After checking in we’ll have a little orientation walk around the neighborhood so everyone can get their bearings; and then we’ll stop in at a popular pub for a nice lunch. Guests may order at the bar on their own, and the food will be delivered to our tables. From then take some free afternoon time to further explore or shop – or just relax at our hotel.
In the early evening we’ll gather at the hotel to go out two unique London experiences. First, we’ll enjoy a private tour to view the incredible Christmas decorations all around the city. These incomparable dazzling lights make for an unforgettable experience – and a photographer’s dream! After the tour we’ll go to dinner at a truly unique London restaurant – a London institution - for a fun evening with delicious food and rollicking entertainment. But not to worry, it won’t be a late night! We will be more than ready to catch up on sleep and be rested for the next full day in London.
During our stay guests may want to use the famous London Underground - the “Tube”. There is a Tube station just a couple of blocks from our centrally-located hotel. As most of our destinations are relatively nearby, the Tube is a good option; but using it can mean walking a fair way (even inside the station once you’ve reached it) Taxis are another option for those who would like to limit walking, and of course, in inclement weather. London taxis carry 5 passengers, and when shared the fare is quite reasonable. In most cases we will get a group consensus on the best way to reach the destinations we will be visiting as a group. All guests are invited to participate in our planned activities, but there is always the option to opt out to pursue other activities.
December 15, Friday – After a relaxing breakfast served in-room we’ll gather downstairs to decide if we even want to leave the hotel or not … If we DO go out, we’ll head for Liberty, arguably the world’s most atmospheric department store. Feel free to gawk, window shop, or actually buy some nice things for the friends and family members back home. A little later we’ll stop in at Arthur’s for a delightful brunch together before leaving Liberty. After all that shopping and oogling we’ll have time to pop back by our hotel to freshen up and leave any purchases in the rooms. For the afternoon everyone may choose how to spend their free time before gathering in the early evening back at the hotel to have a fun dinner together at one of London’s truly unique restaurants. Right after dinner we’ll enjoy a live theatre performance of the beloved English Christmas play The Snowman.
December 16, Saturday – This morning we’ll go out together for an opportunity to have “a full English breakfast” near our hotel.
As will be the case on all our days in London, the tour schedule is flexible, and there will be a good bit of free time. You may wish to plan your own adventure today. Plan to visit the wonderful British Museum, National Gallery or National Portrait Gallery just off Trafalgar Square, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the famous Globe Theatre for a Shakespeare experience, or the iconic Tower of London. Lunch will be on your own today. For those who would like it (weather permitting) we can offer a walking tour along the Thames from Westminster to The Shard, passing some of London’s most notable sights along the way.
Then enjoy a free evening in Jolly Olde London! Guests can grab an early dinner, and take in a London play. There are so many great plays that it would be unfair to pick just one for everyone to see. As a preview here are some of the plays that will be on: 42nd Street, , The King and I, Wicked, Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables, Mama Mia, The Lion King, Frozen, Jersey Boys, The Mousetrap, Matilda, Mrs. Doubtfire, Hamilton, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, and many more. Advice: if you wish to see a play there are a couple of options. If you must see a particular play, go online and book your tickets as soon as they become available. If you are somewhat flexible, it’s possible to stop by the box office a day or so before the performance to buy available tickets. Note that some of the plays mentioned do not yet have tickets on sale.
For those who want something different, consider one of London’s most popular activities: A Ghost Walk. London boasts of countless ghosts, and there’s no better way to get in touch with some than a scary guided night walk.
December 17, Sunday – After another great English breakfast we’ll have a full day blending free time with some of the best Christmas events London has to offer. Most of the traditional annual festivities have not been scheduled; but as the dates and times are available, we’ll work them into our itinerary.
Special London Christmas events include: Covent Garden's Winter Warmer Mulled Wine Festival, Christmas at Kew, the Royal Botanical Gardens - a glittering wonderland with thousands of lights, Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park, and for Harry Potter fans – “Hogwarts in the Snow” at the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, and much, much more. Lunch will be on your own today.
Making arrangements around dazzling evening events, we’ll get back together for our “Farewell to England” dinner together at a very special restaurant. Get set for an unforgettable evening!
December 18, Monday – This morning we’ll share a van for transportation to all airport departure terminals. Flight times are likely to vary, so an early arrival will cover everyone’s schedule. There are many handy places where travelers can grab a quick breakfast or sit down for a full meal on your own.
So it’s goodbye to Jolly Olde England for now – but we’ll be back…
What’s in store for us?
This tour is custom-planned for a small group of no more than 12 guests. Even if you are a seasoned traveler, you have never experienced England like this. We’re sure the magic will captivate you. You’ll be part of a magical adventure - complete with music and surprises that will delight you at every turn.
This is not a “Big Bus Tour”. There will be no wake-up calls at 5 AM to herd onto the buses. Our travelers will have a friendly, extremely knowledgeable guide for the entire trip – not just a bus driver and hum-drum contracted tour guide. We do our best to set the mood, to weave a spell, and to make yours a total experience. Hotels and most restaurants on the entire tour have been selected for their very specific location or high level of “atmosphere”. The small group size allows us to personalize the experience in a way large groups simply cannot do. We make it easy, comfortable and stress-free. No guest has to worry about the details of where we are going next. You will feel as if you are not a tourist, but a guest of your British friends.
The Christmastime tour is somewhat different from other Your Man in Europe tours in that there will be several special events that may call for everyone to cover their own admissions. Otherwise, this is a complete tour; and the prices are not increased during the trip through unexpected charges. As far as possible everyone will be advised of expected costs well before signing the tour. Most meals are included, and those that are not included are detailed in the itinerary.
Your Tour Guide: Larry Ivy is the Tour Coordinator and guide for Your Man in Europe, and a long-time veteran of European travel and unique private tour-leading. Larry wants just one thing: for you to have “the best time of your life”!
Complete Prices $3235 Per Person
*All prices are based on Double Occupancy. Single supplement is an additional $785.
A $500 deposit holds your place on the tour. Reservations and deposits for this fantastic trip should be made as early as possible, but not later than August 1, 2023. Final balance is due by November 1, 2023. Make checks payable to “Your Man in Europe”. Guests are invited to use our no-interest flexible payment plan. Postal mailing address: 2608 S University Drive, Fort Worth TX 76109
Tour Includes: Eight (8) nights of overnight accommodation (based on double occupancy) in very special, carefully-selected hotels, seven (7) breakfasts, four (4) lunches, and five (5) dinners; all ground transportation; and First Class rail travel (where available), admissions to all attractions described in the tour itinerary, full time knowledgeable guide services, and standard gratuities. There will be no additional charges for the tours and events specifically included by Your Man in Europe. There may be extra charges for tours not included in the detailed in the itinerary. These are optional activities.
Not Included: Airfare to, and returning from England, optional travel insurance, extra beverages (meals will include one beverage and will be budgeted accordingly); a la cart or premium menu selections beyond the established meal allowances; between meal snacks; gratuities for extra services such as baggage porters, or for superior service (normal gratuities are included in the trip cost); souvenirs; and privately arranged activities.
Also: All overnight accommodations, as well as railroad travel will be NO-SMOKING.
This tour is strictly limited to a maximum of 12 guests traveling together