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Our 5 Early Bird Favourite Trips for 2020

August 19, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

We recently released our range of tours for the first four months of 2020 and have been loving the response they have had! Seems like 2020 is off to a great start…

These early-season breaks and holidays are an ideal opportunity to pick some real bargains, particularly between the beginning of January and the end of March. During this period we have worked extra hard not only to bring you our usual fabulous low prices but also to include a huge number of added value extras in those prices!

From discounted bar deals through to fantastic entertainment, Sunday lunches and amazing included excursions this is a great time to travel.

But with so much great choice with new hotels, excursions and inclusions, some people might be finding it quite tough to pick out a favourite to start the year with. So we’ve picked out five of our favourite new tours for 2020 – so why not check them out below and grab yourself a bargain!

 

 

Eastbourne 60s & 70s Weekend with £2 Bar

3 Days at Hadleigh Hotel – 7th February - £125pp

Join us on this fun-packed themed mini-break to the south coast. You'll stay in the delightful family-run Hadleigh Hotel and enjoy a fabulous programme of 60s and 70s entertainment along with a £2 bar and delicious Sunday lunch. And if all that is not enough, we'll take you on a half-day trip to nearby Rye as well.

 

 

Liverpool Weekend - Cavern Bar & Guided Tour

3 Days at Ibis Styles Liverpool Dale St – 24th January - £149pp

Liverpool is a great city and famous for many things, but surely one of its most iconic exports has been 'The Fab 4', otherwise known as The Beatles! This great weekend break will take you to where it all started and includes a guided tour of this great city along with entrance to the famous Cavern Club itself. We've even booked you into a hotel just a short walk away from this iconic music venue and in the heart of the 'Cavern Quarter'.

But what about this city? Where do you start? There’s just so much to do in Liverpool and so the only problem might be deciding exactly what to do first. A cultural capital birthplace of The Beatles and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Liverpool has world-class attractions, no less than 2 cathedrals, a proud sporting history and beautiful outdoor spaces making it the perfect location for a UK city break.

 

 

London - Churchill, Camden Market & Royal Mail Rail

3 Days at the St Giles London – 10th January - £179pp

Join us on this great weekend break that is packed with fabulous inclusions, from the drama of Churchill's War Rooms in Whitehall through to a visit to eclectic Camden Market. And did you know about the Royal Mail's private railway line that runs underneath London? Well, this is your chance to find out all about it as we ride the Mail Rail under the bustling streets of this great city!

You'll stay in the heart of London's West End only a short walk from many of the city's greatest attractions including Oxford Street, Regent Street, Piccadilly Circus, Soho and so much more...

 

 

Wake Up to Spring - Live Entertainment & Bar Break

5 Days at the Ocean View Hotel Shanklin – 2nd March - £179pp

Join us on this delightful spring break to the ever-popular Isle of Wight. Set in a premier beach-front location adjoined by Shanklin's long sandy beach & scenic cliff top walks, the Ocean View Hotel certainly lives up to its name and offers everything guests will need to have a fantastic stay - including an indoor pool! Explore the best of the Isle of Wight with our included excursion to Ryde as well the famous 'Round the Island' Tour along with cracking evening entertainment and bingo too.

 

 

Leap Year in Ireland - Ireland's South East

4 Days at Treacys Hotel Waterford – 28th February - £239pp

On this delightful tour, we stay in the cracking Irish town of Waterford on the south coast of Ireland. This holiday offers you the opportunity to enjoy free time in Waterford whilst also exploring the beautiful Wicklow Mountains and gorgeous city of Kilkenny including a guided tour. Our hotel for this tour is the excellent Treacys Hotel in Waterford which not only offers a traditional Irish welcome and entertainment but also offers guests a fabulous leisure centre in which to relax and unwind after a 'hard' day's sightseeing!

 

And if none of these take your fancy, we have plenty more trips for 2020 that you can check out here. If you’d like to have a look at all of our early 2020 trips and holidays then just follow this link or give us a call…


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Explore the Victoria Exhibition at Buckingham Palace

July 19, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

Located in the heart of London, Buckingham Palace is one of the most iconic buildings in the UK, if not the world. The principle home of the Queen and the immediate Royal Family, the building is a state institution, home to many iconic moments throughout history and immortalised in some of the most famous ‘balcony’ scenes on earth. It is also a place of state business, host to regular meetings between Prime Ministers and their monarch quite apart from other important figures and statesmen from around the world.

Today it has also become a tourist hotspot, with the palace being open during the late summer for the public to explore and take in many of its impressive state rooms and history with guides and experts on hand.

 

 

This Summer, to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Queen Victoria’s birth, the centrepiece of the palace is an exhibition celebrating the reign of Queen Victoria, until recently the longest serving UK monarch. This fascinating look at her 63 years on the throne is a must see for all.

Queen Victoria’s Palace, tells the story of how the young queen transformed Buckingham Palace from a private house into a working royal residence. A family home for their nine children along with Prince albert, it quickly and permanently became a rallying point for the nation.

 

 

 

The ballroom is transformed to showcase the famous grand Victorian Ball of 1856, painted by Louis Haghe and brought to life using digital projections.

 

 

Also on display is the embroidered robe from here coronation in 1838, which she also wore for the Stuart Ball in 1851.

 

 

There are plenty of other items on display including a casket of her children’s teeth, marble sculptures of their hands and feet, portraits from across her reign, the Star and Collar of the Order of the Bath, Victoria’s throne and many more fascinating items from across her history.

 

 

There is also a fascinating display in the State Dining Room, that was finished under Victoria’s reign. The room is laid out with original Minton dessert service items and gives an idea of the elaborate dinners that Victoria hosted during her reign, allowing us to experience what it was like to eat some dessert fruit with Victoria – one of here favourite dishes.

 

 

The exhibition is a fascinating experience for anyone who loves royal history, and won’t be around for long. We have a great trip going on the London on the 17th August for 2 days which includes entrance to Buckingham Palace to see the exhibition and a visit to Windsor Castle – a real chance to explore Royal London at is best.

 

 

London is steeped in royal history and this great short break gives you the opportunity to discover two stunning royal residences. Immerse yourself in the story of our royal family and get a small glimpse of what life is like to live somewhere ‘fit for a Queen’!

 


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The Thrill of the British Theme Park

July 12, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

The concept of theme parks dates back to the 1893 World Exposition in Chicago and boy have they come a long way since then! With thrills and shows galore, these modern-day entertainment hubs go from strength to strength and are a great way to entertain kids of all ages during the holidays – particularly in the summer.

But where to go? There is just so much choice. So to help you choose, we’ve taken a long hard look around the country and come up with our top UK theme parks. See if you agree…





Legoland Windsor


This sprawling theme park is a unique experience and an absolute must for all Lego fans out there! Given the Lego theme, this park is particularly well suited to families with children aged 12 and under and there is also loads to keep even the smallest kids and toddlers happy too. So, if you're looking for stomach-in-the-mouth rollercoasters, Legoland is not for you, but it is a fabulous choice for everything else!

Set in lovely grounds (actually the site of the former Windsor Safari Park), it still has some of the charms of the original Danish parent park, with plenty of giraffes, crocodiles and pirates made out of Lego bricks scattered among the rides.

Prepare for a soaking on their wet and wild water rides, follow a pirate trail that’ll leave you wetter than walking the plank or join a Viking fleet where you’ll battle sea monsters and rough waters. Sign the whole family up for some high energy fun at the Fire Academy or take to the skies with the Chopper Squadron. Steer your own course on the Driving School or be captain of your vessel at the Boating School. You can be behind the wheel of a Lego car at Lego City Driving School or help the Lego City Coastguard HQ in your own Lego boat. Or you can ride a fearsome Dragon through a medieval castle or discover the lost metropolis of Atlantis in a Submarine.

If you’re looking to keep you younger children entertained (and exhausted!), then Legoland Windsor Resort is the place to go.

 

Alton Towers

Now if you are a true thrill-seeker, this one certainly IS for you.

Set in an amazing 800 acres of grounds, Alton Towers was once the Staffordshire seat of the Earl of Shrewsbury. Today, the ruined neo-Gothic mansion is at the centre of the Alton Towers Resort, with four hotels and a water park as well as the famous rollercoasters.

With adrenaline-pumping experiences on six of the UK's top roller coasters, Alton Towers is home to over 50 incredible rides and attractions along with fabulous live entertainment and lots of food and drink. Rides range from the incredible Galactica, the world’s first roller coaster fully dedicated to virtual reality for the older children amongst us and based on the Resort’s iconic flying roller coaster, through to Phoebe, Funella, Furgus, Elmo and Cookie Monster at The Furchester Hotel Live Show, or taking the controls in a Vroomster on the Go Jetters Vroomster Zoom ride.

In every sense, Alton Towers really is ‘all in’!

 

 

Paultons Family Theme Park

On the edge of New Forest National Park in Hampshire, Paultons Family Theme Park sits in 140 acres of attractive parkland and is best recognised as home to Peppa Pig World as well as 60 rides and attractions.

The Peppa Pig phenomena has grown hugely over the last few years and this theme park, largely dedicated to the animated adventures of Peppa and her friends has become increasingly popular for families with younger children. Meet Peppa and all her friends as the cartoons most popular characters appear every day that the Park is open for photo opportunities with their loving fans on the veranda in front of the schoolhouse.

Two brand new Peppa Pig World rides are now open: The Queen’s Flying Coach Ride will take families on a tour around the newly extended part of Peppa Pig World in individual coaches on a monorail that starts from the top of the Queen’s castle, a signature point of the attraction. Children and parents will also be able to hop aboard boats at Grampy Rabbit’s Sailing Club where they can cruise along the new water route around Peppa Pig World and discover Pirate Island.

 

 

Longleat Safari Park

In many ways, Longleat shouldn’t really qualify as it is not a theme park in the traditional sense. But there is just so much to do, particularly for the children, that we thought we had to bend the rules just a little bit…

Nestled within 900 acres of ‘Capability’ Brown landscaped grounds and set in the shadow of some of the best surviving examples of Elizabethan architecture, Longleat is the UK’s original Safari Park. It offers an abundance of exciting attractions including the Jungle Kingdom and Animal Adventure, both of which allow you to really get up-close and personal with some truly amazing animals. Alternatively, why not jump on board the Longleat Railway for an exciting ride around the park or take a trip on the Jungle Cruise boat, where you’ll experience the thrill of their sea lions as they swim alongside you plus an unmissable opportunity to see the magnificent gorillas?

Let the kids run riot in the incredible Adventure Castle, complete with rope bridges, zip wires, slides and a Medieval keep or the famous Longleat Hedge Maze and join in the mayhem on their Rockin’ Rhino ride. For those looking for something more sedate, the impressive Longleat House and Grounds has it all as one of the finest Elizabethan stately homes in the country.

Of course, there are many other theme parks around the country and one of the most spectacular rollercoasters in the country is at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, which although not a theme park in the traditional sense, offers a whole load of exciting rides and attractions in a unique seaside setting!

As you’d expect, there are lots of options for visiting all of these great theme parks but if you’re travelling by coach from South or West Wales, you won’t do much better for choice and value than Leisuretime. Check out our more Theme Park here on our website.

 


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Don’t Miss Out On Our Fabulous European Summer Tours

July 05, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

Fancy escaping to Europe for a last minute summer holiday, but not sure where to get the very best value for money? Then look no further than Leisuretime!

We all love going on holiday to relax, explore and get to know new people and places – but don’t you love it even more when you know you’ve got a great deal too? At Leisuretime we have worked hard over the last 24 years to make sure we offer great holiday experiences at unbeatable value for money prices.

But our pricing does not come at the expense of quality as you will see from this small selection of our European Summer holidays! They are packed with quality hotels and lots of inclusions ranging from brilliant sightseeing and excursions through to entrances to leading attractions and even a choice of inclusive bar packages!

By including so much, you really don’t need that much spending money which makes it easier to budget and enjoy whilst you’re away.

So kick back, get out your passport and have a look at just 4 of our great summer tours to Europe. We hope that you’ll find one to suit you – and your wallet!

 

 

Switzerland & The Swiss Chocolate Train

Up to £50 LESS PER PERSON than other operators!

FREE BAR included in Switzerland!

 

Wow! This is a great holiday option for those that thought a trip to Switzerland might be out of their budget. Packed full of amazing excursion inclusions and set in the dramatic alpine beauty of Leysin, not only do we KNOW that we offer the best value for money but we have also managed to include a FREE BAR in Switzerland in your price. Now that will certainly help your holiday pound go a whole lot further...

 

 

Croatia with Zagreb & the Istrian Riviera

Stay in a delightful 4* Hotel with dramatic views over the sea

Up to £300 LESS PER PERSON than other operators!

 

This is a delightful tour that takes in some of the best that Croatia has to offer... Travel down to Croatia through some of the most stunning scenery in Europe, enjoying convenient overnight stops en-route. Your destination is the Istrian Peninsula, an increasingly popular region often compared with Tuscany – and let us show you why!

Your base in Croatia is the beautiful 4* Remisens Hotel Giorgio II, which enjoys a dramatic setting with sweeping sea views. It is an ideal base for this holiday which is packed with fabulous excursions from Roman history through to jaw-dropping scenery and natural wonders. Don’t miss it!

 

 

Florence & Tuscany with Free Bar

Tuscan Super Deal with Free Bar

Up to £130 LESS PER PERSON than equivalent tours by other operators

 

Tuscany has long held a special place in the hearts of British visitors, who find its gentle landscapes of tree-clad hills and red-roofed, sun-baked buildings both uplifting and relaxing. This delightful tour aims to show you some of the best that this beautiful region has to offer on a relaxed and indulgent itinerary.

There is little doubt that the jewel in Tuscany’s crown is the peerless city of Florence, closely followed by ancient Pisa, with its incomparable clutch of spectacular buildings. You'll see both on this tour along with a visit to the nearby harbour town of La Spezia plus a trip to historic Lucca.

Our hotel in the beautiful seaside resort of Marina di Pietrasanta is a delight and the free bar in the evenings isn’t a bad deal either!

 

 

Secrets of France - Lille, Cassel & Boulogne-Sur-Mer

LEISURETIME EXCLUSIVE

Enjoy this new tour which explores some of Northern France's less well-known towns. A real treat!

 

Our base for this holiday is one of the loveliest places to go in France, Lille. This pretty city combines culture, gastronomy, great shopping and a unique atmosphere stemming from the city’s history as part of French Flanders. Our excursions to Cassel and Boulogne will give you a great flavour of thie authentic piece of northern France.

 

 

Psst…Just in case you didn’t know, we’re also offering an EXTRA 5% off all of our summer holidays if you book by the 14th of July! Now that’s a bargain…


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Our 5 favourite Christmas markets to get in the Festive Spirit.

June 17, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

We’re all suckers for a bit of festive cheer around the Christmas period and Christmas Markets have now become one of the most popular ways for people to get in the festive mood. Started in Germany and Austria, this tradition has now spread far and wide into the UK. You can still pop across to Europe for the ‘Real McCoy’ if you fancy it, but if you choose to stay within the UK there is now an amazing choice of markets to choose from right on your doorstep.

The traditional wooden chalets, the sparkling decorations, festive food and drink, shopping and – of course – that cheesy Christmas music, are all part of today’s Christmas Market offering. But with so much choice, where should you go? To try and help you decide, we’ve picked 5 of our favourite Christmas Markets below…but if you have others you love, then let us know!

 

 

Manchester Christmas Market

A long-standing favourite with Leisuretime customers, Manchester Christmas Market is a riot of festive colour and fun set in the heart of this buzzing metropolis. 2019 will see a departure from tradition, though, with the Market moving to a new and as yet undisclosed location elsewhere in the city. Soak up the atmosphere and follow the market trail as it winds through the city centre, tempting you with gifts, crafts, jewellery, clothes and toys. European and local producers offer everything from fine amber jewellery, handcrafted leather bags and top-quality bonsai trees, to handmade Belgian kitchenware, framed photo prints and French soaps.

 

 

Birmingham’s Frankfurt Christmas Market

Birmingham’s Frankfurt Christmas Market is the largest German-style Christmas Market outside Austria or Germany and is packed full of continental festive fayre and traditional goods that are guaranteed to put a smile on your face. From the traditional German sausage and gluehwein stands through to the intricate lacework and porcelain, this is a great choice.

 

 

Bath Christmas Market

The award-winning Bath Christmas Market is a firm favourite with Leisuretime customers, with over 180 twinkling chalets spread out across Bath’s picturesque Georgian streets, it’s the perfect place to do a spot of Christmas shopping. From unique homeware to personalised presents, Christmas decorations, handcrafted jewellery and more, you’re guaranteed to find something special for your loved ones. With so many local makers and designers showcasing their artisan gifts, you can tick off everything on your Christmas list all in one place!

 

 

Bonn Christmas Market

To really experience the festive spirit, there is nowhere better to go than Germany – the spiritual home of the modern Christmas Market. At Bonn Christmas Market there are concerts and a daily programme of events to enjoy along with great festive shopping options! Shop for festive bargains at Münsterplatz, Bottlerplatz Windeckstrasse, Friedensplatz and Vivatsgasse where you'll find everything from ingredients for special recipes to various art and craft items. You'll also find mulled wine, hot mead and chestnuts or you can purchase beeswax candles directly from the bee-keeper. While you shop in this illuminated environment, classical symphonies play in the background. What's more, there is a 280-square-meter ice rink at Friedensplatz—a huge hit amongst one and all.

 

 

Valkenburg

Whilst German Christmas Markets reign supreme, the small but extremely pretty Christmas Market in Valkenburg is unique in Holland and a lovely place to be in the run up to Christmas.
There is a local rumour that Santa actually comes from Valkenburg! You see, as days get shorter, Valkenburg transforms istelf into a cosy and delightful Christmas town, immersed in a magical atmosphere, with a paradise of twinkling lights and beautifully decorated Christmas trees. There is no doubt that you will see, smell, hear and taste Christmas in everything you do and see here!

But what makes Valkenburg's Christmas Markets truly unique is that it is not just held above ground! The network of caves upon which the town is built means that you can visit the unique Christmas markets in the Gemeentegrot (Municipal Cave) and Fluweelengrot (Velvet Cave). Be amazed at Mergelrijk, where dozens of informative stories about marlstone and caves are told, set against a Christmas backdrop, with beautiful marlstone sculptures, works of art, films and interactive tablets.

In the Winter Wonderland, at the Wilhelminagrot (Wilhelmina Cave), you can be amazed by beautifull sand sculptures by artist form all over the world. Be sure to be back above ground in time to watch the fascinating Christmas Parade with its illuminated floats and beautifully costumed dancers and enjoy a stroll through Santa’s Village. Feeling hungry? The culinary walking tour ‘Route d’Amuse’ takes you to the best restaurants of Valkenburg quite apart from the many stalls and other options for sampling some fabulous festive fayre..No wonder that Valkenburg is the number one Christmas town in Holland!

And if none of these brilliant trips takes your fancy, we have plenty of other options available on our Christmas Markets page, right here on our website.


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Find out what why Hampton Court Flower Show is such an amazing experience!

June 10, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

Find out what why Hampton Court Flower Show is such an amazing experience!
The Hampton Court Flower show is a truly special annual event, guaranteed to inspire and entertain green-fingered enthusiasts of all abilities. It is also a marvellous excuse for a fabulous weekend away!

 

 

 

2019’s event promises to be just as brilliant as ever with workshops, music, food and competitions – and there’s a whole lot more to the show than flowers. This year the event has been given a new name and will now be known as the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival.

It’s not all change, though, with plenty of old favourites making a welcome return including the famous Floral Marquee, fabulous Show Gardens and the usual range of opportunities to pick up bargains galore to take back home with you.

Of course, a garden festival wouldn’t be complete without a whole host of gardens and with four garden categories in 2019, there is plenty of choices. Each category offers ideas and inspiration aplenty, whether you’re looking to fill the tiniest pot, a new window box or border, or even an entire garden fit for relaxing, entertaining and just a little bit of showing off…

 


The Global Impact Gardens category is new for this year and explores topical themes using innovative planting and design ideas to convey their hard-hitting messages. Whether it’s a social, economic or environmental issue, the Global Impact Gardens will be a great platform for conversation and fascinating new addition.

There is also an extra splash of royalty this year courtesy of the Duchess of Cambridge, no less! She will be co-designing a garden for the festival with award-winning landscape architects, Andrée Davies and Adam White. This year, the festival will also be paying homage to legendary plantswoman, Beth Chatto who passed away last year. This year’s display will see Beth’s long and successful career celebrated with a gravel garden that takes inspiration from her own gardens.

 

 

With so much to see, you’ll need an occasional break and where better than to enjoy a picnic in front of the floating stage? This feature is brand new for 2019 and will feature a lively schedule of music and entertainment all day long. So kick back and relax in the sunshine to performances from the likes of Soul Brothers, Brass Funkies and the West End Musical Choir.
And if that all makes you a bit peckish, you won’t have far to go to find some delicious food. One of the most amazing options will be the all-new dining experience at the incredible Merlin’s Wild Garden Banquet.

This exclusive banquet consists of a bespoke five-course menu and an immersive foraging workshop where you'll be guided through a wild garden of sorrel, rowan berries, hen of the wood mushrooms, elderberries, flowers and wild garlic with a forager host. Here you’ll discover how Michelin-starred chef, Merlin Labron-Johnson, has incorporated these seasonal gems into his cooking – and how they can be used at home to make old favourites like jams, soups, cordials, liqueurs and dressings.

But don’t worry, if you’re not after a 5-course banquet there is a huge range of choice for lighter bites and snacks that means you won’t go hungry – nor will you have to break the bank!
Finally, if you want to improve your gardening skills and expertise then the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival is certainly the place to come!

 

 

There’ll be experts galore at the show, all on-hand to teach you new skills and crafts that you can use throughout your home, garden and beyond. Whether you’re keen to create a terrarium, want to don a flower crown or need a few ideas to spruce up your garden, head to one of the great talks and workshops to find out how.

So, what’s holding you back? Join us on our fantastic 2 day trip to this amazing event. We depart on the 4th July and in addition to entrance to the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival we include a fantastic excursion to Windsor, return coach travel and overnight accommodation with breakfast for just £139pp!!! Great value – and we guarantee you’ll have a 'blooming' good time!


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Our tips for a great Father's Day gift

June 09, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

Still not sorted out dad’s Father’s Day treat? Then why not spoil him and grab a fantastic Leisuretime break for him to enjoy? Whether he enjoys a relaxing jaunt to the seaside, exploring our great cities or the adrenalin rush of Formula 1 or a theme park for big kids, there’s bound to be something he’s going to love!

 

Our great value prices start at under £20 for our day trips and only £79 for our overnight tours, rising up to a few hundred pounds for our longer and more inclusive trips. So, whether you are looking for a present on your own or clubbing together with the whole family, there’s bound to be something for you. And if he’s a fussy dad who likes to choose for himself, there are always Leisuretime Gift Vouchers!

To find your perfect Father’s Day trip visit our website, but in the meantime here are just 3 picks from our holiday range that we think might be perfect.

 

 

Silverstone Formula 1 Grand Prix 2019

For petrol-head dad’s everywhere, how about a visit to the British Formula 1 Grand Prix? Nothing beats the glitz, glamour and adrenalin-fuelled drama of the British Grand Prix. Silverstone is renowned for its high-speed circuits and its action-packed racing schedule. With this is also some brilliant exhibitions, music, and attractions to amplify the thrilling experience. The Formula 1 circuit at Silverstone is a super sleek modern wonder.

The design of the circuit has been modified on several occasions over the last 12 years to improve the safety of drivers. At the end of the race, officials remove the barriers to allow fans to step onto the track and get a closer look at the pit lane. F1 drivers call the Formula 1 British Grand Prix at the iconic Silverstone Circuit ‘insanely fast’. We simply call it one of the world’s greatest sporting events. Throw in a great weekend-long party and the race is on.

This inclusive package sees us at the circuit on Friday, Saturday & Sunday to ensure that we get to see the very best of the action AND we have even a 2-4-1 bar INCLUDED every evening for you to enjoy back the hotel. This is a 3-day trip and departs on the 12th of July for just £379pp!

 

 

Cider, Cream Tea & Ludlow Food Festival

For the foodie loving dad’s out there, what's not to love on this jam-packed foodies delight weekend! Enjoy cider tasting at Henry Weston's Cider Mill, sample great local produce at Ludlow's Food Festival & delve right into an Afternoon Cream Tea on Sunday.

Ludlow’s annual Food Festival is already a firm favourite and is real foodie heaven. There are 3 main stages which will host a range of presentations, demonstrations and talks from a range of guests including celebrity chefs. There is also a choice of smaller stages and locations hosting more intimate events but whatever you choose to enjoy here, you’re going to have a great time.

We also take a trip to Weston’s Cider Mill, a 400-year-old farmhouse nestled amongst acres of apple and perry pear orchards. Offering a truly unique day out, we include a guided tour and tasting which allows you to experience the unique history of the Westons family.

Throw in a trip to the Old Dairy Tearoom in Longhope you can tuck into a traditional cream tea and maybe you’ll also be tempted to take some of the other delicious treats on offer? Delicious!

This fabulous trip will be departing on the 13th September for 3 days and includes all this for just £149pp!!!

 

 

Central London Weekender

Does your dad just like a good weekend away in the city? Then why not join us on this lovely short break to London with lots of time to explore and get the most out of this amazing city. Staying in the heart of London's West End, you are only a short walk from many of the city's greatest attractions including Oxford Street, Regent Street, Piccadilly Circus, Soho and so much more!

London is a fabulous city to visit. No matter what your interest, this buzzing metropolis will have something to fascinate and enchant you. From street markets to historic monuments, incredible museums & galleries through to dance, cinema and theatre London never disappoints. For those that love their food and drink, London offers unparalleled options with virtually every cuisine on earth available somewhere in this great city for budgets to suit every size of wallet.

With this trip on the 7th September for 2 days, at just £99pp it really is unbeatable value for money!

Still not sure? No problem, we have hundreds of departures available on our website that might be just the ticket along with our full range of day trips and vouchers! So why not come and see us in our Cardiff shop, call us or visit our website and let us help you create a Father’s Day to remember!


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Our 5 favourite heritage breaks in the UK

June 05, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

In the UK we are so fortunate to have such beautiful countryside and a rich and diverse national heritage. So, what better way to discover some of our most interesting and attractive destinations than by coach? Sat up high, you get a far better view through the wrap around windows of your comfortable, modern coach than you ever will from a car. Without the need to worry about parking, driving or getting lost, you really can just sit back, relax and watch our beautiful countryside roll past as you share stories with fellow travellers and look forward to the adventures ahead!

In this blog we will take you on a tour of some our favourite countryside and heritage destinations. We love them, see what you think…

 

 

Our first stop is in the Heart of England and the Cotswolds. An idyllic region where no two parts seem the same although they all share those defining Cotswold features: golden stone, lively market towns and rolling hills, otherwise known as ‘wolds’. Explore these English villages of honey-coloured stone and take in splendid, lively market towns like Bourton-on-the-Water, Stow on the Wold and the iconic Broadway. The Cotswolds also benefit from being surrounded by fascinating larger towns and cities such as Stratford-upon-Avon, made famous by our most popular bard William Shakespeare, and historic Warwick with its imposing castle and pretty old town centre.

 

 

We offer a wide range of tours to the Cotswolds ranging from day trips and short overnight hops to our newest addition for 2019, a 5 day Cotswolds Explorer that takes you through the very best that this gorgeous part of England has to offer. We include visits to Stratford-upon-Avon, Broadway, Warwick and Royal Leamington Spa. You’ll stay at a lovely hotel with leisure facilities and we’ve even thrown a 2-4-1 bar into the package to help you relax in the evenings!

 

 

For the history buffs and steam enthusiasts amongst you, then the North West of England and North Wales has lots to offer. Chester, Liverpool and Manchester form a fascinating triangle of cities rich in history, architecture and culture that are perfect to explore by coach. They are each distinct in so many ways that it certainly pays to see more than one at a time.

 

 

One of our most popular trips is a tour that stays in the heart of Chester at the luxury Hallmark Queens Hotel and includes a fabulous excursion to Liverpool along with a ride on the delightful Llangollen Steam Railway. Chester’s Roman heritage rivals that of Bath and the centre of the city has been beautifully preserved whilst the vibrancy and cultural pull of Liverpool just cannot be beaten. Again, a 5 day visit to this region is a real delight and great to share with friends.

 

 

If you fancy continuing further north up to the English border with Scotland then the scenery changes dramatically as you travel through the glorious Lake District right up to the Scottish Borders and Hadrian’s Wall. The Lake District itself is just packed full of delights for the eye including lakes, castles and gardens as far as you can see. The Scottish border itself is marked by the incredible Hadrian’s Wall, built in the 120’s to mark the end of the ‘civilised world’ and now surely one of our most fascinating historic monuments.

 

 

This year we have launched a new tour that, as in previous years takes in the Lake District including a lovely cruise on Lake Ullswater and some great sightseeing, but is now based on the Scottish border at Gretna. Gretna was made famous by young, eloping, mainly English couples sneaking away to get married away from the watchful eye of their parents. It is still the ‘marriage capital’ of the UK with hundreds of people tying the knot here every year! Our tour actually stays in the old Marriage House and is a great choice for romantics old and young. By basing ourselves in Gretna, we can combine this Lake District tour with a fascinating guided tour of Hadrian’s Wall AND an excursion over the border into Dumfries. Now that’s different!

 

 

Heading east from the Lake District, Yorkshire and Northumbria have always offered beautiful countryside and an incredibly rich heritage. From the vibrant city of Newcastle through to the historic cities of York and Durham and the rolling dales of the Yorkshire Moors, there is just so much to explore.

 

 

For those looking to really get under the skin of the local heritage, then there are lots of opportunities to get ‘behind the scenes’. This can be through one of a wide range of visitor attractions or a visit to one of the many businesses producing traditional goods and local fayre that have opened their facilities up to visitors.

 

 

Our Yorkshire Crafts tour explores some of the best that Yorkshire has to offer and goes behind the scenes of two great local institutions. We learn about how ceramic pottery is created and we'll go on a journey through the Wensleydale Creamery, set right in the heart of the glorious Yorkshire Dales.  Our base is a lovely family-run hotel and we also visit York with its exquisite architecture, quaint cobbled streets & iconic York Minster.

 

 

Alternatively, stretching from the unspoilt wilds of the Northumberland National Park, to the outstanding natural beauty of the Heritage Coast, Northumbria has some of Britain's most imposing natural scenery.  Lush rolling countryside, spectacular forests, glorious sandy beaches, quaint villages and historic market towns mingle with mighty castles and ancient monuments that bear testament to the bloody battles and warring clans of a bygone era.

 

 

Sparkling cities like Newcastle, Gateshead and Durham are thriving, with lots of shopping and plenty of nightlife. Bustling market towns and pretty villages are scattered around the region which can lay claim to being ‘The Cradle of English Christianity’, particularly mystic Lindisfarne. Durham is reputed to have ‘the finest Norman Cathedral in the world’. The area has been home to pioneers across the centuries; the world’s first public railway steamed into life here, and the award-winning Gateshead Millennium Bridge, which links Newcastle & Gateshead is one of the world’s most celebrated pieces of architecture.  

 

 

Our tour to this area stays in the heart of Newcastle at a lovely 4* hotel that is within easy walking distance of most of the city’s best attractions. We’ve included excursions to the cathedral city of Durham and mystical Lindisfarne too making this a really popular and varied tour.

 

 

And there is so much more to discover on our great British Isles! To get a full flavour of all the coach holiday options you have to explore them from South Wales, just check out the Country and Heritage page here on our website. Happy holidays!


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Our five favourite family holidays - that are just a bit different

May 31, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

It can be hard to think of what to do with the kids sometimes, especially if you are looking for something a bit different. So we thought we'd recommend five of our favourite UK attractions that are just a little bit different but perfect for a family getaway with Leisuretime.

 

 

Science Museum, London – New Medicine Galleries

Complimenting the incredible choice of existing displays at this iconic museum are the amazing new Medicine Galleries. Marvel, or shudder at more than 2,500 artefacts spanning 400 years in the Science Museum’s new medicine galleries – home to one of the largest medical collections in the world. Tracing the transformation of life through medical research and practice, this new permanent display is due to open in autumn 2019. Exhibits range from prehistoric surgical tools to modern medical equipment and include fascinating items such as the first 3D-printed models – designed to help with a kidney transplant from a father to his two-year-old daughter – and the embryo incubator used to create the world’s first test-tube babies. Great stuff, particularly for curious teens…

 

 

Bristol Zoo

A visit to Bristol Zoo Gardens is an adventure into an exciting animal kingdom, all set within 12 acres of beautiful gardens. Get up close to more than 400 species of exotic, endangered and adorable animals from the four corners of the globe, whilst enjoying 12 acres of award-winning gardens.

With nine undercover animal houses, Bristol Zoo is a wonderful, all-weather family attraction. You can see the amazing gorilla family in the unique 180-degree view gorilla house, venture into Twilight World to discover animal secrets after sunset and come face-to-face with their incredible reptiles in the Reptile House. Some other Zoo favourites include Seal & Penguin Coast, Monkey Jungle, Asiatic lions, Bug World, Meerkat Lookout and the Aquarium.

And don’t forget to visit Splash, a water-play area with streams, dams and the chance to get your toes wet. The more adventurous can have a go on the aerial ropes course, ZooRopia, and swing alongside some of the Zoo’s most popular animals – gibbons and gorillas – before flying down the zip wire.

 

 

Cotswold Water Park

The Cotswold Water Park is a great place to explore and again something particularly well suited to slightly older children!

 With more than 150 lakes spread over forty square miles, there is something for everyone – from angling to archery, watersports to walking, birdwatching to biking, to name just a few things you can do. The range of activities on offer in this one area is quite amazing, with something for everyone – the young, the not so young, and everyone in between. How about heading off on your bike to explore the secluded lakeside paths? Or try your hand at a new sport such as waterskiing, kayaking, sailing or paddle boarding?

 

 

Monkey World - Ape Rescue Centre

Enjoy a fun-filled, fascinating time out for all the family at Monkey World – Ape Rescue Centre in Wareham. The 65-acre park is home to the stars of TV’s ‘Monkey Life’ and ‘Monkey Business’, and provides sanctuary for rescued and endangered primates from around the world.

Daily keepers’ talks provide a captivating insight into life at the park and its inhabitants - staff are so enthusiastic about what they do, giving a real feel-good factor.

While away the hours watching the monkeys and apes interact, then let the kids use up all their energy in the huge Great Ape Adventure Play Area.

 

 

Ghostly Gaslight & Cadbury World Spooktacular

Fantastic Fireworks & Have a Scream at Halloween! Ideal for kids of all ages.

As dusk falls and the street lamps cast eerie shadows at every corner, strange apparitions replace the usually friendly Victorians seen in the town’s shops, cottages and work places! Vampires, blood thirsty butchers, the Grim Reaper and werewolves take over the Town and phantoms fill the streets. A highlight of the evening will be a firework and lights show. Blists Hill is one of the 10 museums attractions at Ironbridge and recreates life in the Victorian era.

Cadbury World is spooktacular this year and a right good place for fun, frights and chocolate delights! Join Dermort O’Scary and his cast of gruesome ghouls as The Scream Factor returns to Cadbury World for more frights than ever before! Frankie Frankenstein, Witchy Woo Woo and Wolfy the Wolfman have been rehearsing to win this year’s mystery prize, but who will win? With plenty of fun and frights and lots of opportunities to dance and scream along, you’d be ‘ghoulish’ to miss out!!

 


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Our favourite Northern Seaside Resorts

May 18, 2019 / 0 Comments / in Holiday Tips / by Leisuretime

We Brits really do love our seaside holidays and this time we’re focusing on the delights of some of our more popular seaside resorts “up north”! They’re all famous for a warm welcome and some amazing entertainment and attractions from enormous rollercoasters, to high towers and scenic railways but whatever you are looking for in your perfect seaside holiday, we’re sure one of them will fit the bill…

 

 

Blackpool

Blackpool claims to be Britain’s most loved holiday destination, which should come as no surprise when you think about the huge range of attractions available all year round, as well as the new seafront, world-class events and spectacular lighting shows. If you are feeling adventurous take a trip up the famous Blackpool Tower, which soars 158 metres above the town or get your adrenaline pumping at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, where you can ride the UK’s tallest rollercoaster, the Big One. Quieter adventurers can appreciate Blackpool’s calmer side by strolling down the newly renovated South Promenade or for the dancers amongst you there is always the world-famous Tower Ballroom! Oh yes, and it is also easy to get around because there are very few hills to climb and a plethora of transport options…

 

 

Llandudno

Llandudno is one of the most popular and pretty coastal towns in North Wales. It’s known for North Shore Beach and 19th-century Llandudno Pier, with its shops and games arcade. Northwest of town, the cliffs of Great Orme headland jut into the sea. Llandudno is, without doubt, the ‘Queen of Welsh Resorts’. The long, crescent-shaped promenade and sweeping sands make it a perfect holiday destination all year round and a real favourite for Leisuretimers.

 

 

Morecambe

The pretty seaside resort of Morecambe is often referred to as the gateway to the Lake District. The resort boasts an expansive five-mile promenade which looks out across the majestic sweep of Morecambe Bay, perfect for an evening stroll to take in stunning sunsets and star reflecting waters. During the day, enjoy the extensive use of public art along the seafront; view the bronzed statue of Eric Morecambe, the town’s best-loved export and the many bird sculptures created by the Tern Project. In town, enjoy excellent shopping and the traditional Lancashire welcome and hospitality extended to all visitors. But make sure you don’t forget to sample the local cuisine, including the area’s famous thirst quencher, Nettle Beer, as well as mouth-watering potted shrimps and some of the best fish and chips in the country!

 

 

Southport

Despite being one of the most attractive resorts in England and the ‘The Floral Capital of England’s North-West’, Southport is all too often a much overlooked seaside destination. For those that take the time, the rewards are many because Southport just has so much to offer. Set amongst 22 miles of coastline and boasting plenty of beaches, Southport is designed for beach life and is a perfect place to relax and unwind. This classic seaside resort has scenic parks and gardens, fabulous shopping, exciting nightlife and a mouth-watering array of bars and restaurants. Of course, traditional seaside amusements also await; stroll down the UK’s oldest iron pier and try the old penny slot machines in the Pavilion at the far end, or ride traditional carousels at Funland. Family attractions include Southport Pleasureland, Splash World waterpark, Martin Mere and Farmer Ted’s. Whatever your seaside pleasure, Southport will deliver!

 

 


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