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The best of England tour vs the Southern England tour

I have been looking at these two RS England tours and both these tours sound appealing. Has anyone taken both and care to comment on your preference if you have one?

Posted by
8491 posts

I only took best of South England, but there was a couple in our group that solved the problem by doing both! They started with Best of South England which ends in Bath. Had two days between tours, and then began Best of England which starts in Bath.

I can highly recommend Best of South England, but I can’t compare from experience. Looking at itineraries, I don’t think you will go wrong whatever you choose.

Posted by
222 posts

We have done both and found both to be very good. Best of England will cover more regions of England and Wales and South England will focus on the area mainly along the southern coast. The idea of doing both back to back is a good suggestion if the schedules match up. We have done that with other RS tours and really enjoyed the opportunity to immerse in a country or region. Saves on airfare also!

Posted by
4974 posts

They are both great, but totally different. Best of England will give you a variety of "once over lightly" of many areas, while the Southern England is more in depth in one partidular area. If the schedules are such that you can do them back to back, that would be ideal. If not, you can't go wrong with either, but perhaps the Best of England would be better.

Posted by
14151 posts

I’ve also done both. I vote for Best of England for a taster of different areas!!

Posted by
1155 posts

We did both a few years apart and liked them both, but if I could only pick one it would be Best of England. You see a few different regions of England; cities, castles, rural. We only stayed one day in London after the tour and if I was going to change anything about our trip it would be to stay 3-5 days there.

Posted by
157 posts

Thank you for all your replies.
I would love to do both but can’t afford that option hence trying to choose between.
I’m drawn by the Lake District and the Cotswold so the best of itinerary , but then the Jurassic coast and dartmoor especially if you get to see the wild ponies sounds so inviting as well.

Posted by
4974 posts

Perhaps the thing to do is make a list of the most appealing things about each tour and compare them. Then take the one that sounds better, and start saving up for the other.

Posted by
103 posts

I've done both. I liked the South England one best, but both were very good. I think there were more activities that appealed to me on the South England one. I had the same guide for the two. I took the England tour in October and the South one was from late May into early June - so weather might have been a factor in my choice.

Posted by
157 posts

Thank you for your reply
I decided to take the South England tour because the coastal locations really appealed to me and I decided that I would see gardens and countryside as well which sound so prominent on the best of England tour. I will go in the spring. I have been to Scotland and Ireland in the spring and had nice weather and the longer days which was nice.

Posted by
198 posts

Carol,
I just returned from the Best of South England tour. While I can’t compare it to the England Tour, I have to say I don’t think you’ll be disappointed with the South England Tour. We had fabulous weather and everything was in bloom. I know there is no guarantee with the weather, but I think spring time is a great time to go. This tour checked off many of my bucket list items. Stonehenge was amazing and the white cliffs were great. The moors with the ponies and sheep roaming free was wonderful. Our hotel in Chagford was right across from the church and cemetery. I’m our last morning there, about 10 ponies were wandering between the headstones eating the fresh grass. I spoke with one of the locals who told me that they have freedom to wander all over, and frequently graze in the church yard. It was amazing to see them up close.
I don’t think you can go wrong with either of the tours.
Vanessa

Posted by
157 posts

Thank you for sharing your experience especially about the ponies! I would absolutely love to see the wild ponies. This tour did win out for my choice and the chance to see the ponies is part of the reason. I also am not that interested in seeing numerous manor houses as I believe are on the Best of tour.

Posted by
848 posts

Hmmmm, we took the BOE tour in 2017. I remember one manor house, one palace and a lot of castles, churches and ruins. Of course I love all that.

Posted by
157 posts

Margie you are absolutely right it’s a combo of house, palace, castles and sounds like a wonderful tour.

Posted by
2 posts

Hi Carol:

My wife and I did Southern England and Best of England together in May 2018. Did we prefer Southern England or Best of England? Yes!! They are quite different from each other so every day is new. We stayed an extra couple days in Bath (lots to do there), then just walked across town with our RS rolling bags and started the next tour.

If you have the time and are going to eventually do both anyway, this is a really good way to go. Only a few of them line up this way, so good to decide early. They said April that year had rough weather, but May was glorious for us (always subject to change on a yearly (daily) basis, of course!). Note that George Harrison's "Here Comes the Sun" was inspired by a similar year...

The folks in England treated us so well and were amazingly friendly. In Salisbury, we had dinner at a pub on the main square, and the 5 Brits sitting next to us "adopted" us. We talked with them for hours, us with our ale, them with their gin. When we told them we had to go because we were leaving early the next day, they all wanted a hug! I still regret that we did not get their email addresses. Smile, say "Hi" and you will have made new friends, and you will likely know which County they are from within a minute or two!

Dave

Posted by
10 posts

We just completed the Best of England tour and it was my favorite of the five RS tours we’ve taken so far. We went early and stayed in Cardiff, in Southern Wales for three nights before our trip and everywhere we went we met friendly people who we could have talked to for hours. I didn’t have enough vacation to be gone for 2 tours back-to-back, and three weeks is about the longest I can stay away from my dog and garden.