Venture to the heart of Northern England on this comprehensive tour of the North’s scenic and cultural splendour.
Alnwick Castle - Internationally renowned as a major shooting location for the Harry Potter franchise and Downton Abbey, this superb 1000 year old site offers the archetypal English castle experience.
York Minster - Majestic Gothic spires reach up into the York sky on one of Europe’s largest cathedrals, a focal point for dramatic events throughout English history.
Robin Hood’s Bay - This beautifully preserved fishing village offers a stunning contrast between its pretty cottages and rugged cliffside setting.
Yorkshire Dales - The fiercely rugged and verdant expanse is a haven for plant species and hosts some of the UK’s most diverse wildlife, with the beautiful Gothic-influenced city of York at its centre.
Wordsworth’s Cottage - Famed abode of the poet William Wordsworth and the refuge where he produced some of his greatest works, this cottage is full of the great man’s secrets and truths.
Lake Windermere - Spiritual home to Beatrix Potter’s fabulous stories, the largest natural lake in England provides historical and natural fascination.
Scottish Borders - Explore from the ancient boundary of Hadrian’s Wall to the great city of Edinburgh.
Explore the cultural highlights and scenic peaks of Northern England on this five day tour.
Roam from the dramatic Yorkshire Dales to the North’s powerful castles and halls. Ascend to the tip of a Gothic cathedral’s spires before delving into the nooks and crannies of valley villages. And relive the scenes of fierce conflicts as you wander Hadrian’s Wall.
Picturesque bays, broad lakes, and stunning buildings are guaranteed on this comprehensive tour of the English landscape.
Students, seniors over 60, and children between 5 and 15 (unfortunately, we don't carry children under 5 years old)
Our tour starts by hugging the magnificent East Lothian coastline as we travel towards the walled border town of Berwick Upon Tweed. After stopping to admire the fortifications we continue to Alnwick Castle, home of the Earls and Dukes of Northumberland since 1309. This magnificent Castle and its gardens have appeared in many films and television programmes. Leaving Alnwick behind we travel towards the City of York on the Great North Road, a route that has carried countless Roman Legions between the remote Northern outposts and the more populous settlements of Roman Brittania. In late afternoon we arrive in York, your base for the next two nights.
Day 2 is a leisurely day that gives you the flexibility to spend time exploring the medieval heart of York, a city whose rich history goes back to the time of the Romans, Vikings and the Normans. Then join our excursion to the North Sea coast of Yorkshire. Our journey begins in the late morning when we head for the magnificent North Yorkshire Moors National Park. Lunch will be in Whitby, a bustling fishing port and the inspiration for the fertile imagination of author Bram Stoker, who stayed in the Royal Hotel on the western side of Whitby while writing his famous novel Dracula. After lunch and free time in Whitby we travel to the fishing village of Robin Hood’s Bay*, a perfectly preserved conservation village of winding lanes and narrow alleys before returning towards York.
You will be collected from your accommodation and head west into the heart of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Established in 1954, the Yorkshire Dales National Park has outstanding scenery, a range of wildlife habitats and a rich cultural heritage. It’s a special place – a fantastic outdoor arena for recreation and peaceful relaxation and a haven for wildlife. Continuing West our route takes us through the Northern Dales an area of outstanding natural beauty that is the centre of the Dales cattle trade. Our final leg of today’s journey takes us high up into the remote hills of the Yorkshire Dales before descending into the lively market town of Keswick** where you will be dropped off at your accommodation and are then free to explore this charming town. (**During July/early August this tour may stay in Windermere instead).
After breakfast you head a short distance out of town to the mysterious Castlerigg standing stones, thought by many to have been built over 5,000 years ago and the scene of ancient rituals. You then travel on to the shores of Ullswater, described as England’s most beautiful lake, where you can take a forest walk to see the mighty Aira Force waterfall. Continuing south over the narrow and winding Kirkstone Pass you stop at Lake Windermere where you have the option to take a leisurely cruise on the Lake or simply eat lunch while enjoying views of the mountains and lakes. After lunch you travel around the southern tip of Windermere and on towards Coniston Water and shortly afterwards you arrive at the picturesque conservation village of Hawkshead, where the poet William Wordsworth attended Grammar School. After free time to explore the village you take the narrow country lanes north towards Grasmere, which Wordsworth described as “the loveliest spot that man hath found”. There is free time to visit Wordsworth’s Dove Cottage or enjoy the peace and tranquility of the Wordsworth Daffodil Garden by the River Rothy. In the late afternoon you return to Keswick.
Leaving the Lakes behind us we start our climb towards Hartside Pass, at over 1,900ft - on a clear day the hills and mountains of Scotland and the English Lake District are clearly visible. We follow the route of the old sheep drovers road between England and Scotland. Stopping at Hadrians Wall, built by Emperor Hadrian to keep the Scots out of the Roman Empire there’s an opportunity to explore some of the Roman remains and walk in the footsteps of the Roman Centurions who patrolled this desolate frontier of the Empire. Following the ancient Roman Dere Street we cross the border into Scotland and continue on to the Border town of Jedburgh for refreshments by the ruins of Jedburgh Abbey. Our final stop is at the world famous Scott’s view with stunning views over the River Tweed and the Cheviot hills that form the border between Scotland before continuing north to Edinburgh.
* Robin Hood's Bay - The minicoach cannot access the main village because of local restrictions. The coach will drop you at the top of the village and you must walk down (and back up!) a steep hill to reach the old village centre.
My first trip with Rabbies and I had a fantastic time. Thanks to our awesome guide, Nick for a great 5 day trip of Yorkshire, the Dales and the Lake District. I was amazed by the stunning views throughout and appreciated interesting history and fun tunes provided by Nick. Great weather was just an added bonus. The BBs Rabbies booked were good too. Highly recommend this tour especially if a Harry Potter or Beatrix Potter fan. Thanks Rabbies! I hope to be on one of your tours again.
Our tour of Yorkshire Lake District was exceptional. Rabbies should be proud to have a driver of such capabilities as Mav. His knowledge of the areas and ability to answer questions thrown at him were spot on. Thank you Rabbies for booking us excellent B Bs. All in all a great experience and we are looking forward to our tour of Mull Iowa Skye and Orkney. We will be recommending your tours to our friends in Australia.
I'm looking for tours 1d , departing from Edinburgh on 3august
Just returned from two Rabbies tours, the first of which was the Yorkshire and Lake District 5-day tour that leaves from Edinburgh. This was a 'new' tour in that it was done in reverse order to the previous versions so that we could pick up part of our group in York on Day 2 - those folks had come up from London on the 7-day tour from London to Edinburgh. Despite a few kinks (unusually foggy weather, very cold temperatures for May), I enjoyed the trip, particularly the beautiful Lake District, Hadrian's wall, Keswick, and the entry back into Scotland. Eric was an able guide, singing to us every day, and giving us much new knowledge regarding sheep farming! Thanks again, Rabbies, for a lovely experience!
We had an excellent trip with just 4 passengers and our guide. Pete was awesome! He enhanced our itinerary with great info, music, and stories (all true!) Our B&Bs were lovely, their hosts very gracious. Hope to return to hike around the beautiful lakes and hills. York was fantastic with the Minster and Shambles topping the list.
We just completed our second wonderful Rabbies tour and would like to thank Rabbies for being the best in the business. Eric Nicol was a fantastic tour guide who kept us all informed and laughing (even though he did not sing enough Elvis!) We do travl frequently and recommend the company every where we go. Already planning our next Rabbies!
Second tour with rabbies 5-9th June Another fantastic tour with Rabbies. Couldn't get enough of the medi-eveil walled city of YORK Eric our guide was fantastic and accomodating in every way. Many thanks Eric
What a fabulous time we had touring the Lake District and Yorkshire with Angela! Her detailed knowledge kept us informed, while her delightful sense of humour kept us laughing. Rabbie's tours are always excellent, but having that special kind of tour guide makes the trip extraordinary. My thanks to the company for such a wonderful tour and to Angela for her outstanding performance.
The most exiting trip I have ever been! Angela was great, and the beauty of natural impressed me.
Dear Angela, Thanks so much for making my birthday tour fantastic! Hayden and I had a wonderful time, we can't wait for a return trip. I'm looking forward to an 'Outlander' tour and getting lucky!!! Take care, Deb
You stay two nights in the historic city of York and two nights in Keswick in the heart of the Lake District. During July/early August this tour may stay in Windermere instead.
Your tour excludes accommodation; but when you book, you can ask us to reserve local accommodation for you, or you can choose to reserve your own accommodation in the overnight locations.
Once you've booked your tour, we'll reserve all your accommodation, and your driver will drop you off with your hosts. You’ll pay your accommodation directly. Most don’t accept credit cards, so be prepared to pay cash.
Changes to accommodation cannot be guaranteed and are subject to availability. An amendment charge will apply.
You’ll need to contact us with your accommodation details. Please only reserve accommodation within the overnight towns that your tour stops in. Your driver will drop you off at your chosen accommodation as long as it’s relatively central.
You may be liable for the cost of your first nights’ accommodation for each separate accommodation booked. If you cancel less than three days before departure, you may be liable for all your accommodation costs.
We try to reserve accommodation that’s no more than a 20-minute walk from the town centre. We regularly check our accommodation suppliers to ensure they reach a certain standard. The prices below are for guidance only.
B&B (Bed and Breakfast) Standard
The toilet and showering facilities are shared with at least one other room in the house, and the price includes breakfast. The cost is £35 - £40 per person per night. A single standard room is £40 - £60 per night.
B&B En suite
The showering and toilet facilities are private, and breakfast is included in the price. The cost is £45 - £55 per person per night. A single en suite is £60 - £80 per night.
Hotels have a bar or restaurant and provide evening meals. Breakfast is included in the price. The cost is £70 - £85 per person per night. A single is £85 - £130 per night.
A hostel consists of dormitory rooms with 4 to 16 bunk beds. The bathroom facilities are a short distance from the dorm room. Kitchen facilities are equipped so you can make your own meals. The cost based on dorm beds is £19 - £25 per person per night.
Please note that SYHA hostels only offer same gender dorms. Some independent hostels will offer mixed rooms (males and females together).
The UK and Ireland's historic city centres are full of narrow streets and winding roads. So, to speed up your departure, we only pick up from our central meeting points. What's more is leaving the city using the most direct route also reduces the carbon footprint of our tours.
We don't recommend bringing your car into the centre of our departure cities. It can be hard to find parking, and there are excellent public transportation services.
Arrive 15 minutes before your departure time. Due to waiting restrictions, we can't wait for you if you're late.
If you're late for your tour, our cancellation policy applies.
We have a cancellation period of three days for our one day tours, and 21 days for longer tours. If cancelled outside this period, we'll give you a full refund minus a 10% admin charge. If you cancel inside this period, refunds are at our discretion. Click here to view full terms and conditions.
It's simple: you book, you go. This means we'll never cancel your tour because of a minimum numbers policy.
Due to logistical reasons, we're unable to let you pre-book a seat on the bus. But our comfortable 16-seat mini-coaches have huge windows. So, you'll always get a good view.
Unfortunately, we have no on-board toilet facilities, but you'll have regular comfort breaks.
We regret we don't carry children under the age of five on our scheduled tours.
You can ask us about the tours we recommend for younger children. And if your child is less than 1.35m tall, you should let us know, so we can provide them with a suitable booster seat.
We want you to enjoy Britain and Ireland. And we believe the best way to do this is to get you off the mini-coach and out exploring. So, we give you plenty of time to take photos, go walking, and explore ancient ruins.
We exclude visitor attractions in your tour price because it lets you travel your way. It means you can pamper yourself with a luxury lunch or skip an attraction whenever you feel like it.
You don't need to. We stop in small towns, villages, and rural eateries where you can choose whatever meal pleases both your taste buds and your budget.
Let's be honest, our driver-guides would never refuse a cheeky bonus. But it's up to you, and the amount is entirely at your discretion.
We advise you take out travel insurance. You can click here for excellent rates.
Travel the local way on small group tours of 16 people or less
You'll have a guaranteed experience, or your money back
Guaranteed departures: you book, you go
Internationally recognised for our award winning experiences
Highlights: mountains, lochs, walks, castles, beaches, national parks
Highlights: lakes, walks, national parks, waterfalls, literature, mountains
Highlights: unesco heritage sites, ferry, walks, prehistoric sites, cathedrals, lochs, mountains