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Best of England in 14 days Hotels

Hello everyone! My family and I are looking at the Best of England tour for 2025. You can consider us newbies to traveling with a tour company (last time for me was 25 years ago), and we will have 2 adults and 1 teen. I was wondering if anyone can give us information on which specific hotels this tour uses for each stop? Perhaps someone traveling this year or last year. I know they may not use the same hotels in 2025, but it will give us an idea of what to expect. Thank you in advance! Any information is appreciated.

Posted by
93 posts

I can help.
My mother and I were on the Best of England tour in mid August 2023. I kept very detailed notes about the tour day by day, and I really maximized all our free times and pre/post tour stays by doing a lot of research in advance. Feel free to reach out if you have specific questions.

I also posted day by day tour timing notes in the following thread
https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/tours/best-of-england-rest-of-your-day-question

Tour Hotels:

Bath: Brooks Guesthouse. We ended up staying 3 nights pre-tour here as well, so we got to stay in the same room for 6 nights total. Small but quant grandma decor rooms, and the beds were super comfy. We had only a shower. Small breakfast buffet and nice table order selection including daily specials.

Stow: the Sheep hotel. Modern Boutique style hotel. We had a very large room and large bathroom with tub and shower. Ok Breakfast buffet selection and very delicious table order menu that included pancakes and waffles.

Conwy: Castle Hotel. Grand old world large rooms, definitely the fanciest of the trip. We had two double beds instead of two twin beds, but they were on the firm side. Small bathroom with tub and shower. We had a delicious group dinner in the hotel restaurant on our first night there. Get the lamb. Very nice breakfast buffet and table order selections.

Keswick: crow park hotel. We ended up with a large ground floor room with the Victorian bay windows right at the front of the building. Simple style, no frills. Shower only. There was not a breakfast buffet, only table order with limited choices.

York: minster hotel. This was prob our least favorite of the bunch. our room had multiple gashes in the wall, broken accessories in the restroom, and very basic. I think we just had a shower. They had a letter in the room indicating they were short on staff and were family run, so they encouraged you to not write a negative review on social media but rather speak to their front desk to see if any concerns could be remedied. The breakfast buffet selection was ok, but I remember not liking the taste of the table order selections for some reason.

London: Radisson Blu Edwardian Vanderbilt. We stayed 1 night post tour as well. More business style than any of the others. I think this was the only hotel that had a mini fridge and AC in the room. On the smaller side, zero decorations on the wall, but everything was comfortable and functional. We had a tub with shower. Very nice location just a couple minutes walk to the Tube station. We had our farewell dinner in the hotel restaurant downstairs. The breakfast buffet was probably the largest and most delicious of the trip (many hot options as well which was a first for the trip), and in addition they still had table order available.

Posted by
7 posts

Helloo! I am scheduled to take this tour this September. (I am the OP in the thread that galliegirlie posted above.)

For my tour, they have us in Henrietta House in Bath, instead of the Brooks Guesthouse. (And I have seen some negative reviews about the HH but am keeping an open mind, knowing you've gotta just go with the flow sometimes :-) The last hotel is the same (Radisson Blu Edwardian.) I won't know the other hotels until about a month out (I think) and I can update you then, if they're different from the info listed above.

galliegirlie, thank you again for all your excellent info and I have a feeling that I will be reaching out soon to ask you some more weirdly specific details about something or other!

Posted by
4 posts

Thank you so much galliegirlie! This is perfect! I appreciate your thoughts on each hotel as well. These all look very nice. I also saw your post with tour timings, which was equally very helpful. You have inspired me to keep my own travel journal with this type of information when we go! Again, thank you, I really appreciate it! :)

And thank you omrocks for responding and giving me your upcoming trip info! I hope the Henrietta House works out :). I'd love to know the other hotels when you find out, if you remember, but no worries if you don't. You'll probably be getting very excited for your trip at that time. :) I hope you have a wonderful time!

Posted by
1 posts

Hi there.
We just flew home from doing this tour Monday. We stayed in the same hotels galliegirlie listed. They were all very comfortable. The wifi in Keswick and York was pretty meh, but whatever. Not that big a deal. Totally agree on the breakfast spread at the Radisson in London. That was also the only hotel with a lift, so be prepared for stairs. We had a nice stay in all the hotels. Comfortable rooms (some larger than others), comfortable beds, clean and the locations were centrally located and within easy walking distance to, well, everything.
We flew in two days before the tour (we were able to book a tour out to Stonehenge because we had all of Saturday to ourselves) and stayed for two extra nights in London. Both Brooks Guesthouse and the Radisson were very accommodating when we requested extra nights. I strongly recommend staying a longer in London so you can see more of it. And the early arrival meant we weren't rushed getting to Bath and we had time to acclimate and shake off the jet lag. Oh, and get your tickets in advance whenever possible. The British Museum is free, but get tickets online for a specific window of time to arrive. It'll save time standing in line.
I hope you have a blast!

Posted by
4 posts

Thank you dmletak! I appreciate all the information and am glad to hear you had a good trip and all the hotels were comfortable! We are considering adding extra days in London as well, so thanks for the tips regarding that. I also appreciate the information about lifts: how many flights of stairs would you say was the most you had to deal with?

Posted by
763 posts

We also stayed in the same hotels galliegirlie listed except for London where the Bailey's Hotel (140 Gloucester Road) was used. Bailey's was a rather nice choice and was conveniently located.

The only real disappointment for us was The Sheep in Stow-on-the-Wold. It was just disastrous - we first encountered a toilet seat hanging by one loose bolt. They didn't repair it after our initial contact and of course it fell off overnight. Next we couldn't get any hot water in the shower, not even lukewarm. Of course no one was available early in the morning to help us. Fortunately for me I searched around the room and discovered a little switch hidden in a baseboard outside the bathroom on the opposite wall. Apparently they had a booster system which did enable hot water. For some reason it was switched off with no instructions for guests about it. We missed breakfast but were able to meet the group in time. We described our problems to the tour guide who was really irritated with the hotel. He somehow got us the best room in our next hotel in Convy - the large room with the bay window over the entrance. That had fantastic seats with views in both directions.

Posted by
4 posts

Thank you for the response Silas! I'm sorry to hear about your stay at The Sheep. Although I'm glad to hear it sounds like the tour guide listened to your complaints and tried to make your next stop a little better. I appreciate the information and hope the rest of the trip was enjoyable!

Posted by
855 posts

Not quite sure what info you are looking for as everyone has different opinions when it comes to hotels. We did the RS England tour before Covid and it was the same hotels mentioned above. I did not particularly care for the Brooks hotel in Bath while other people on here rave about how charming it is. I do agree that the hotel in York was horrible and wonder why RS continues to use it. I liked the Sheep on Sheep, we had a wonderful room. After 11 RS tours we found that some of our hotels have been great, some good and some not so good. And since he mainly uses the smaller family run hotels, people’s rooms vary within the hotel and are not identical which may contribute to the different opinions. I’m sure you will have a great trip, it’s a wonderful tour and you actually spend very little time in any of the hotel rooms.