Explore Yorkshire and Northumberland by rail
Scenic rail journeys bring to life the history and wild, natural beauty of Yorkshire and Northumbria on this wonderful eight day tour. Follow in Viking and Roman footsteps, visiting historic York, Chester's Roman Fort, Bamburgh Castle, Lindisfarne and the glorious Alnwick Gardens.
Our holiday begins as you arrive at your hotel in Harrogate, at the edge of the Yorkshire Dales. We spend four nights here at the Crown Hotel, the Holiday Inn or the Old Swan. One of England's most attractive towns, Harrogate retains many Georgian and Victorian features including its original spa buildings. After time to discover your new surroundings, and to perhaps visit the famous Betty's Tea Rooms, this evening we meet for dinner in the hotel.
This morning we travel by rail to York, a beautiful walled city steeped in centuries of history. We discover much of the city's long and fascinating story on a guided walking tour of its main attractions. These include the incomparable Minster, which is one of Europe's largest and most ornate gothic cathedrals, and the Shambles, a quaint street that has remained almost unchanged since the Middle Ages.
Following the tour, you have the chance to take in the sights of this marvellous city at your own pace. The network of medieval streets offers a unique charm and is one of York's major highlights, as is the National Railway Museum (free admission). The largest of its kind in the world, the museum boasts many steam locomotives and a selection of Royal carriages.Another popular option is the Jorvik Viking Centre, which faithfully recreates York when it was capital of the Viking Kingdom. Otherwise perhaps stroll along the city walls or take in the views from Clifford's Tower.
Today we take a nostalgic journey on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway to the popular seaside town of Whitby. We board our heritage steam-hauled* train in Pickering and make the wonderful journey through the stunning North York Moors National Park. Our route takes us through Goathland, a charming place perhaps best known as 'Aidensfield' in TV's Heartbeat. We pass over undulating moorland and through the winding Esk Valley as we make our way to the coast in restored carriages. Your time in Whitby is free for you to perhaps visit the brooding abbey, explore the town's Dracula connections or simply wander through the maze of narrow cobbled lanes in this authentic fishing port's old town before our return journey on the preserved railway.
*Wherever possible the rail excursion will be steam-hauled.
Today your entire day is at leisure in this alluring spa town. You could spend the day simply unwinding and enjoy the hotel's facilities, or explore this charming town further. Known for its verdant parks and gardens, you could take in the delightful Valley Gardens or the incredible landscaped gardens at RHS Harlow Carr. Alternatively you might like to indulge in relaxing treatments at the Turkish Baths, while admiring the Royal Pump Room. If you have not done so already, why not enjoy a sumptuous afternoon tea at Betty's Tea Rooms?
Leaving Harrogate behind, today we travel on the famous Settle & Carlisle Line. The 72-mile route is regularly voted one of the world's top railway journeys, and once we set off it is easy to see why.
Once in Carlisle we transfer onto the Hadrian's Wall Line to Hexham, where we continue by coach to our hotel - either the historic White Swan Hotel in Alnwick, or the 4-Star Linden Hall Hotel in Longhorsley.
This morning we enjoy a guided tour around the beautifully landscaped Alnwick Gardens. The gardens are a vibrant place; magnificent architecture and lovingly tended plants and flowers are brought to life with a variety of water features.
Today we cross the wild Northumberland countryside to Bamburgh, a scenic coastal town dominated by the magnificent Bamburgh Castle, before visiting the famous island of Lindisfarme**.
**Please note that due to tidal variance, the time of the visit to Lindisfarne is subject to change.
After breakfast in the hotel, we transfer to Alnmouth station where we join the East Coast Mainline route back to York (First Class), a fitting place to end our adventure.
Please note that while every departure of this tour will feature the same excursions, the order may differ from that shown above.
Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.
An escorted experience and all travel arrangements
Comfortable accommodation in your destination
Delicious meals included
Exciting excursions and free time to explore
of travellers would recommend this tour
based on 19 verified reviews
Because I did not give 4 or less. I would in fact give 4.5 because of some minor issues.
We had an excellent tour guide and a nice crowd of people with none of them who turned up 10 mins late for outings! ( I am a grumpy old woman) We visited so many places i knew from my childhood but my husband had never been to. The bad start to the holiday however was leaving it to Steve Kimber to inform us on our first night that there was a rail strike in the Tuesday and so the Settle Carlisle train journey would not happen. In spite of your letter explaining how and why you dealt with the situation I still feel you should have told us before the holiday started.
We will come again. Everything was top grade, that is hotel,s, food, courier and train and bus journeys. Again , first rate.
It lived up to expectations, except for the hotels, which, in my opinion, did not live up to expectations
From start to finish the tour was well thought out, and gave us the flexibility to 'do our own thing' if we wished. The places we visited were wonderful and the weather was good. What more could one ask for!!
It was a very good holiday/learning experience which we enjoyed very much.
Very pleased with tour, outings, hotels, tour manager....
Well-organised, friendly tour guide - good weather!
Lovely hotels. Lovely evening meals. Beautiful scenery. Lots of good variety. Kindhearted tour manager.
Really want to give 4.5 stars. Good itinerary, excellent tour manager. First hotel very convenient
Explore Yorkshire and Northumberland by rail