Delve into the historic and engaging city of London during our one-week stay. You’ll feel like a Londoner in no time as you explore the city in depth and get around by the Tube and London bus system. Enjoy your stay at the elegant Radisson Blu Edwardian Vanderbilt Hotel, located in posh Kensington.

Starting at: $4,290 * Price includes special offer Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 London and the River Thames. Credit: Julian Lovel, London and Partners  Flags along Oxford Street in London  Houses of Parliament overlooking the Thames River  Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, London. Credit: London On View  St. Paul's Cathedral. Credit: Pawel Libera / London and Partners  The iconic British Museum. Credit: Pawel Libera / London and Partners  The courtyard of the British Museum. Credit: London On View  London's Tower Bridge  London's historic Westminster Abbey. Credit: London On View  London's Houses of Parliament and Big Ben Tower. Credit: London On View  Pub located in Bankside, London. Credit: Mickey Lee Photography / London Tourism  Traditional high tea  Historic Hampton Court, outside London  Entrance to Henry VIII's palace at Hampton Court  Tudor ceiling of Henry VIII's Great Hall, Hampton Court  All Souls College, Oxford  The Radcliffe Camera, Oxford  Skyline of the medieval town of Oxford  A typical village in the Cotswolds  Lobby of the historic Radisson Blu Vanderbilt Hotel, Kensington, London

London

A One-Week Stay in England

9 days from $4,290

Delve into the historic and engaging city of London during our one-week stay. You’ll feel like a Londoner in no time as you explore the city in depth and get around by the Tube and London bus system. Enjoy your stay at the elegant Radisson Blu Edwardian Vanderbilt Hotel, located in posh Kensington.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

We were excited about the trip going in and it more than lived up to our expectations. We would travel with the Smithsonian again because of the quality of this tour.

- Diane F.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

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Overview

FlexAir is designed to provide you with the flexibility and choice you need to personalize your air travel experience. Explore a wide range of flight options in consultation with our experienced travel professionals to select the flights, routing, class of service, and dates of travel that most fit your needs. Our partner tour operator has negotiated contracts with a wide variety of carriers that allow them to hold flight reservations and then issue your ticket close to departure without additional fees. This protects you from the need to purchase published-fare tickets, which must be ticketed within 24 hours of purchase. FlexAir reservations provide the flexibility to adjust reservations without penalty and to accommodate extensions and upgrades right up until ticketing time, usually around 45 days before departure. We look forward to providing you with more choice and the best possible itinerary for your air travel plans.

Program Includes:

  • Guaranteed transfers between the airport and your overseas accommodations upon arrival and departure (in most cases). We will provide you with all of the details you need to guarantee your transfer.
  • Air schedule change and delay assistance. Book FlexAir to ensure assistance should schedule changes or delays impact your air travel plans.
  • Flight insurance worth up to $250,000, subject to policy terms, is automatically included.
  • Confirmed airline seat assignments at the time of booking (in most cases).

We were excited about the trip going in and it more than lived up to our expectations. We would travel with the Smithsonian again because of the quality of this tour.

- Diane F.

2019 Itinerary

Days 1 & 2 — Depart the U.S., Arrive London

After your arrival, clear brief formalities, and transfer to the beautifully situated Radisson Blu Edwardian Vanderbilt Hotel, located within walking distance of many of London’s famous highlights.

Once at the hotel, each guest will receive an informative welcome kit containing general information about London as well as a map of the city. You will also receive a transportation card for London's "Tube" and the iconic double-decker buses. You'll learn how to use local transportation by traveling as a group to London sites and of course, your travel director will be available throughout the program for suggestions regarding theater, restaurants, and independent activities.

This afternoon, explore the South Kensington neighborhood around your hotel on a walking tour. Tonight, join fellow travelers for a Smithsonian Journeys welcome reception and dinner at the hotel. (R,D)

Day 3 — London

Explore the Royal Borough of Westminster on a fascinating walking tour. Visit iconic Westminster Abbey, a World Heritage Site where the kings and queens of England are crowned.

Take a break for a light lunch, then continue to the Palace of Westminster, more commonly known as the Houses of Parliament, for a tour of the historic halls and chambers with an expert guide. See New Dawn, a stunning, modern light sculpture dedicated to the memory of those who struggled for women’s voting rights in Britain.

Engage in an English tradition with a stop for afternoon teaThe balance of the day is free, so let your interests be your guide and explore on your own. Later, get together in the Smithsonian Travelers Corner at a local pub for an informal discussion with the Smithsonian Journeys Expert. (B)

Day 4 — Day trip to the Cotswolds

Take a full-day excursion into Oxfordshire today. In the Cotswolds, step into a storybook scene as you make your way through verdant hills and visit the charming village of Minster Lovell. Continue to the village of Burford for a walk along the High Street, lined with pubs and shops built with the Cotswolds’ famous honey-colored stone. Next, head to Oxford and the Oxford University and visit one of the storied colleges to admire the architecture and manicured lawns. Stop for lunch at a cozy restaurant in the Cotswolds. (B,L)

Day 5 — London

Cross the Thames River for Bankside, located on the southern side of the river, for a behind-the-scenes guided visit of Shakespeare’s Globe. After lunch at a local pub, walk back across the Thames via Millennium Bridge with your destination of “The City.” Enjoy a guided walking tour to the oldest part of London, a perfect place to explore hidden alleyways and fascinating “nooks and crannies.” Continue with a guided visit inside the famed St. Paul’s Cathedral, designed by Sir Christopher Wren, where you'll see the Whispering Gallery and the famed Dome.

The balance of the day is free of planned activities so that you can explore on your own. Prior to dinner at the hotel, a local speaker will give a talk that centers on how England’s literary greats were inspired by the city of London. (B,L,D)

Day 6 — Excursion to Richmond and Hampton Court

This morning, travel to the London Borough of Richmond for a guided walking tour of this charming historic town that straddles the River Thames. Continue by paddle boat on the Thames to King Henry VIII’s famed Hampton Court Palace to see the highlights of this remarkable Tudor landmark. Lunch will be served on board the paddle boat.

Enjoy dinner at a popular London restaurant. (B,L,D)

Day 7 — London

After breakfast, attend another engaging presentation by your Smithsonian Journeys Expert. Then, set out with an expert guide for a fascinating architectural tour that includes the Inns of Court, London’s legal center that brims with tradition. Learn about centuries of history, as well as some legends, that took place behind these walls. Admire the eclectic architecture as you walk amid leafy courtyards in the heart of London’s legal community. Some of the city’s finest gardens can also be found here. Enjoy lunch on your own.

Next, travel to the British Museum for an escorted highlights tour of the Museum’s extensive collections of artifacts from the world’s great civilizations, including Assyrian and Greek sculpture, Egyptian wall paintings, ancient mummies, and the iconic Book of the Dead. This evening, gather in the Smithsonian Journeys Travelers Corner for an informal discussion about the day’s discoveries. (B)

Day 8 — London

Spend the morning exploring the Victoria and Albert Museum, one of the great museums of the world and a London landmark. The museum is renowned for the breadth and depth of its collections, including paintings, silver, jewelry, decorative arts, large halls of statuary, and more, plus many special exhibitions. Just a few of the highlights are the Great Bed of Ware, built in 1590; the Raphael Cartoons, commissioned in 1515; and the famous 16th-century Ardabil carpet.

The afternoon is at leisure to follow your own path and explore on your own. This evening, gather for a Smithsonian Journeys reception followed by a farewell dinner at a popular London restaurant. (B,D)

Day 9 — Depart for the U.S.

Transfer to London’s Heathrow Airport for your transatlantic flight to your gateway city. (B)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)

2020 Itinerary

Days 1 & 2 — Depart the U.S. and Arrive London

Depart the U.S. on your transatlantic flight to London.

After arrival at London’s Heathrow Airport, transfer to the Radisson Blu Edwardian Vanderbilt Hotel, located within walking distance of many of London’s famous highlights.

Upon arrival at the hotel, you will receive a Welcome Package with information about London as well as a map of the city. You will also receive a London Transport Oyster pass, good for travel on London’s Underground, its iconic double-decker buses and so much more. You'll learn how to use local transportation by traveling as a group to London sites. Your Smithsonian Journeys Travel Director will be available throughout the program for suggestions regarding theater, restaurants, and independent activities.

This afternoon, gather for a walking tour of the neighborhood around your hotel.  This evening join fellow travelers for a welcome reception and dinner at the hotel. (R,D)

Day 3 — London

Explore the Royal Borough of Westminster on a fascinating walking tour. Visit iconic Westminster Abbey, a World Heritage site where the kings and queens of England are crowned.

Take a break for lunch at leisure, then continue to the Palace of Westminster, more commonly known as the Houses of Parliament, for a tour of the historic halls and chambers. Engage in an English tradition with a stop for afternoon tea. The balance of the day is free to explore the city independently. Later, get together in the Smithsonian Journeys Travelers Corner at a local pub for an informal discussion about your London experiences. (B)

Day 4 — Cotswolds / Oxford

Take a full-day excursion into Oxfordshire. In the Cotswolds, step into a storybook scene as you make your way through verdant hills and visit the charming village of Minster Lovell.

Continue to the village of Burford for a walk along the High Street, lined with pubs and shops built with the Cotswolds’ famous honey-colored stone. We’ll make a stop for lunch at a cozy pub then head to Oxford and  Oxford University. Visit one of the storied colleges to admire the architecture and manicured lawns. Return to London and the hotel late in the day. (B,L)

Day 5 — London

Cross the Thames River for Bankside, located on the southern side of the river, for a behind-the-scenes guided visit of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. After lunch at a local pub, walk back across the Thames via Millennium Bridge with  “The City” your destination. Enjoy a guided walking tour to the oldest part of London, a perfect place to explore hidden alleyways and fascinating “nooks and crannies.” Continue with a guided visit inside the famed St. Paul’s Cathedral, designed by Sir Christopher Wren, where you'll see the Whispering Gallery and the famed Dome.

The balance of the day is free of planned activities so that you can explore on your own. In the early evening gather for a talk by a local expert on Literary London. Dinner will be served in the hotel following the presentation. (B,L,D)

Day 6 — Richmond / Hampton Court

This morning, travel to the London Borough of Richmond for a guided walking tour of this charming historic town that straddles the River Thames. Continue by paddle boat on the Thames to King Henry VIII’s famed Hampton Court Palace to see the highlights of this remarkable Tudor landmark. Lunch will be served on board the paddle boat.

Return to London late in the day. Enjoy dinner this evening at a popular London restaurant. (B,L,D)

Day 7 — London

Today enjoy a fascinating architectural tour that includes the Inns of Court, London’s legal center, that brims with tradition. Learn about centuries of history, as well as some legends that took place within these walls. Admire the eclectic architecture as you walk amid leafy courtyards in the heart of London’s legal community. Some of the city’s finest gardens can also be found here. Enjoy lunch on your own.

Continue on to the British Museum for an escorted tour of the museum’s extensive collections of artifacts from the world’s great civilizations, including Assyrian and Greek sculptureEgyptian wall paintings, ancient mummies, and the iconic Book of the Dead. This evening, gather in the Smithsonian Journeys Travelers Corner for an informal discussion about the day’s discoveries. (B)

Day 8 — London

Spend the morning exploring the Victoria and Albert Museum, one of the great museums of the world and a London landmark. The museum is renowned for the breadth and depth of its collections, including paintings, silver, jewelry, decorative arts, large halls of statuary, and more, plus many special exhibitions. Just a few of the highlights are the Great Bed of Ware, built in 1590; the Raphael Cartoons, commissioned in 1515; and the famous 16th-century Ardabil carpet.

The afternoon is at leisure to explore on your own. This evening, gather for a  farewell reception followed by dinner at a popular London restaurant. (B,D)

Day 9 — Depart for the U.S.

After breakfast transfer to London’s Heathrow Airport for your return flight to the U.S. (B)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)