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NEW Maritime Jewels of the British Isles 2015

Pre-trip: London, England

The bustling capital of England offers discoveries both historic and cosmopolitan, from Trafalgar Square to some of the world’s most pre-eminent museums. Your included two-day London Transport Pass will give you easy access to the city’s “Tube” (subway) and buses, bringing you to all corners of the city, where you can further enhance your discoveries independently after discovering historic Hampton Court with a local guide.

It's Included:
Accommodations: for 3 nights in London at the First-Class Millennium Gloucester Hotel Kensington or similar
4 meals: 3 breakfasts and 1 dinner
Included tour: Hampton Court tour
2-day London Transport Pass
Exclusive services of a Program Director
All transfers
Now included for 2015:
Gratuities for local guides and motorcoach drivers on your extension and all optional tours
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    Depart the U.S. today on your flight to London. Please refer to your individual air itinerary for exact departure and arrival times.

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    Arrive throughout the day in London, England. You'll be met at the airport and accompanied to our hotel, where you are invited to join your Program Director for an orientation walk of the area around your hotel.

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    Enjoy an included tour to Hampton Court Palace and Gardens this morning, exploring at your own pace while using their audio equipment. Hampton Court was leased by Cardinal Wolsey in 1514, and he began rebuilding and converting it into a lavish palace. Hampton Court became a royal residence when it was turned over to Henry VIII in 1529. A pair of magnificent public rooms remains from Henry’s reign: the Great Hall and the Chapel Royal, still a place of worship today. The practical side of royal life is represented by the enormous Tudor Kitchens, the most extensive surviving 16th-century kitchens in Europe, where meals for 1,000 people were once prepared daily. The palace is home to one of the greatest collections of Renaissance paintings in England, housed in the Wolsey Rooms and the Renaissance Picture Gallery. The buildings cover six acres, and there are also more than 60 acres of gardens.

    After lunch on your own, take advantage of your included two-day London Transport Pass to make your own discoveries. Dinner is on your own this evening.

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    Enjoy a day at leisure to discover London on your own. Or join our optional tour to Windsor Castle. While visiting the home of some of the most famous English monarchs, including Henry VIII and Elizabeth I, you'll visit some of the castle's most impressive features, including ornate state apartments, St. George's Chapel, and the iconic Round Tower.

    This evening, choose from some of the most acclaimed restaurants in the world, or seek out neighborhood fare in a local pub, during dinner on your own.

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    • Meals included:

    This morning, after breakfast at your hotel, you'll enjoy a morning at leisure in London before joining your fellow travelers arriving for your Maritime Jewels of the British Isles Small Ship Cruise Tour.