Cotswolds Festive Discovery Tour

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Duration: 4 nights
Interests: Discovery tours
Type: Festive breaks

Spend the Christmas period enjoying daily excursions that explore all the winter delights of the Cotswolds with our Festive Discovery Tour. 

What you’ll love

  • Admiring the festive lights of Blenheim Palace
  • Taking a wander through Shakespeare's life in Stratford-upon-Avon
  • Exploring the historic city of Oxford
  • Staying in Grade II-listed Harrington House
  • A celebration dinner with all the trimmings on Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve

What’s included

  • Comfortable en-suite accommodation in our country house 
  • Cream tea on arrival day 
  • Cooked or continental breakfast every morning 
  • Daily packed lunches 
  • Three-course evening meals, plus tea & coffee 
  • Guided sightseeing with an experienced HF Holidays Leader 
  • All transport to and from sites of interest  
  • Easy-to-follow routes, maps, and information in our Discovery Point if you want to explore independently 

    Please note - Entrance fees are not included

Trip Notes

Easy to download as a PDF, our trip notes provide detailed information for every holiday. Please click below to find the trip notes for your departure date.

All our carefully-curated itineraries are designed by our experts. While we make every effort to adhere to the described itinerary, we may take alternative routes or adapt the running order for weather and/or operational reasons.

Enjoy a warm welcome over afternoon tea from 4pm.


At Stratford-upon-Avon, we can visit the houses associated with William Shakespeare and his family. Enjoy a gentle stroll along the river or enjoy the Christmas atmosphere in this picturesque town. You can also join our optional walking tour around the town.


In the morning, why not take a gentle countryside walk to a local village using one of our easy-to-follow self-guided walking routes.  Alternatively, you may wish to attend a service at one of several churches in Bourton-on-the-Water. For those who prefer a more relaxed start to the day, there will be games and puzzles for you to enjoy with your fellow guests, before a light lunch. In the afternoon, you can watch our Christmas film played in the lounge or bar area, take time to stroll around the village, or simply relax. In the evening, there’ll be a tasty Christmas dinner served with all the trimmings. 


We visit impressive Blenheim Palace, where there are themed displays and decorations throughout the rooms to get us into the Christmas spirit!  Enjoy some of the extensive grounds before lunch, then head to Oxford for an optional walking tour of the city or take free time to just wander around this architectural and historical delight.


Depart after a leisurely breakfast and a fabulous holiday.


Harrington House

You get the best of all worlds at this Grade II-listed retreat just a skip away from the heart of Bourton-on-the-Water – the impossibly pretty Cotswolds town with chocolate-box cottages, old-fashioned tearooms, and low-arched stone bridges that span the River Windrush. Not only will you be within walking distance of the Cotswold Motoring Museum, the Model Village, and Birdland Wildlife Park & Gardens, but it’s an easy drive from village beauties Broadway and Bibury. For walkers and hikers, there’s no shortage of thrills, especially for those keen to explore the well-trodden trails and paths around the Windrush Valley, Lower and Upper Slaughter, Gloucestershire Way, Cotswold Way, and Monarch Way.

 

Rooms

Designed with your comfort in mind, Harrington House has 27 well-appointed guest rooms available in three categories: Classic, Premium, and Superior. 

Classic Rooms are comfortable en-suite guest rooms, ideal for a peaceful night's sleep. Amenities include free Wi-Fi, tea and coffee-making facilities, toiletries (hand wash, shampoo, and shower gel), and a TV. 

Premium Rooms are more spacious en-suite guest rooms. Amenities include free Wi-Fi, tea and coffee-making facilities, toiletries (hand wash, shampoo, body lotion, shower gel), and a 32-inch TV. Extras include bathrobes, slippers, and comfortable mattresses.

Superior Rooms are even more spacious en-suite guest rooms offering upgraded views of the surrounds. Amenities include free Wi-Fi, tea and coffee-making facilities, toiletries (hand wash, shampoo, body lotion, shower gel), and a 32-inch TV. Extras include bathrobes, slippers, and comfortable mattresses.

We love: Rooms 1 and 2 on the first floor for their master bedrooms, original Palladian design, and lovely views. Room 24 in the Windrush Cottage is a large twin room with its own private garden.  

The Choose Your Room service is available at our UK country houses, allowing you the option of choosing and confirming a specific room for an extra charge of £30 per room. This is subject to availability. Upgrade supplements apply. 

Check in & check out 
You are welcome to check in from 4:00pm at the earliest. On arrival, you’ll enjoy a complimentary cream tea and get to meet your fellow guests, our HF Holidays Leaders, and the rest of the friendly team.  

On the day of departure, we kindly ask all guests to check out by 10:00am. You’ll be asked to settle your bill prior to leaving. You may, of course, make a charitable donation to our HF Holidays Pathways Fund if you wish. Please note that we only accept card payments.  

Room supplements

Superior Premium single Premium double/twin Choose your room
£25 pppn £20 pppn £20 pppn £30 per room

About your stay

A warm welcome
We want you to feel comfortable from the moment you arrive. You’ll find a welcome pack in your room with guest registration forms, menus, order forms for dinners and picnic lunches, the Wi-Fi password, and the front door code. Our houses are locked at night, so we recommend noting the Duty Manager’s number on arrival in case of an emergency (or getting locked out). 

Evening entertainment
While evening entertainment varies from house to house, the HF Holidays Big Pub Quiz held after dinner on Wednesdays is a weekly staple. Your HF Holidays Leader may be around for tips on guided and self-guided walking routes as well as visit-worthy local attractions. 

Walks talks 
Our HF Holidays Leaders host guided walking information briefings before dinner on arrival days. This is followed by a group Walks Talk for information on the following day’s walking delights (held before dinner every evening). Self-guided walking guests are, of course, welcome.  

The walking day
Prior to setting off on walks, your HF Holidays Leader will run you through a short safety briefing. There’s also an up-to-date weather forecast on display at the house to ensure you have appropriate clothing and footwear. If you choose to do your own walks or are on a self-guided walking holiday, we ask that you please complete an Independent Walker Card each day. These can be found near the Discovery Point in the house. 

Food & drink

Led by experienced chefs, we serve a wide range of dishes made with fresh and seasonal ingredients. We always aim to source the best produce available and use home-grown herbs and vegetables from our own gardens whenever possible. Additionally, we have a licensed bar with beers, soft drinks, and a superb selection of spirits. Full-board comes as standard and includes a cream tea on arrival and a hearty breakfast on departure day.

HF Holidays understands the importance of managing allergens effectively to ensure food is safe for guests with food allergies. Whilst we are always able to confidently inform guests which allergens are present in our ingredients and dishes, we are unable to guarantee absolute freedom from the 14 main allergens in our kitchens. Vegetarian and vegan menu choices are available. If you have allergies, food intolerances, or any special dietary requirements, please inform our reservation team at the time of booking.

Accessibility

For accessibility and assistance information, please contact our expert team on 020 3974 8865 or view the accessibility information online for Harrington House

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Getting to Harrington House

Find out more about this location including travel details and room types.

More Information

Address

Harrington House
Sherborne Street
Bourton-on-the-Water
Gloucestershire GL54 2BY

Tel: +44 (0)1451 821213

By train

The nearest station is Moreton-in-Marsh.  

However, the nearest mainline station is at Cheltenham Spa. 

Check National Rail for train times and routes. 

By taxi

From Moreton-in-Marsh, it’s a nine-mile journey taking 20 to 30 minutes.

From Cheltenham Spa, it’s an 18-mile journey taking 35 to 45 minutes.

For pricing, please contact Limozena taxis directly.

Limozena
You can pre-book a taxi from our recommended company, Limozena*. We recommend booking your taxi at least seven days in advance by contacting:

Tel: +44 (0)1451 820972
Email: denwalmsley@yahoo.co.uk

A return journey can be arranged on your behalf by the HF Holidays House Manager at Harrington House.

*Limozena is not owned or managed by HF Holidays.

By bus

The 801 bus goes from Moreton-in-Marsh to Bourton-on-the-Water and takes about 30 minutes. Alight next to the Edinburgh Woollen Mill Shop from where it’s a short walk to Harrington House.  

By car

There’s free car parking at Harrington House if you decide to drive. 

Directions 
From the A429 take the road into the centre of Bourton-on-the-Water. At the war memorial by the village green, turn into Sherborne Street. Cross the narrow bridge and continue to just before the road forks. You’ll find Harrington House on the left.  

By air

The nearest airport is London Heathrow Airport.

From the airport 
Take the train to London Paddington station from where there are direct trains to Moreton-in-Marsh, which takes just over two hours. Then you can get the bus or a taxi to Bourton-on-the-Water. 

The UK has a famously unpredictable climate so it's best to be prepared for weather that’s sunny one minute and raining the next.  To make it easier, here’s a list of items you should consider packing.  

Essentials 

  • Suitable, sturdy footwear with a good grip. You’ll be on your feet for much of the day
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Waterproof overtrousers 
  • Sunhat
  • Rucksack 
  • Water bottle (at least 1 litre capacity) 
  • Sunscreen 
  • Mobile phone
  • UV sunglasses 

Recommended 

  • First aid kit, including plasters
  • Sit mat  
  • Waterproof pouch for valuables 
  • Rubbish bag (remember to always leave no trace) 
  • Wallet/purse 

Optional extras

  • Walking poles,
  • Flask for hot drinks 
  • Durable lunch box 
  • Waterproof rucksack liner 

Harrington House Calendar

  • Guided Walking
  • Self-Guided Walking
  • Special Interests
  • Unavailable to Book

Guest reviews

Duration:
4 nights
Interests:
Discovery tours
Type:
Festive breaks

Call to Enquire

020 3974 8865

For group bookings of 10+ guests click here

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