An antiques and book hunting trip for professional and amateur alike. Poking around fairs, shops and auction rooms in search of hidden treasure. As with all Homemade Holidays tours this trip is adaptable to suit your needs. This is an idea of what you could get up to, as we visit some of the main antiques centres and some of the lesser known places around England, and over the border into Wales, to browse around “book lovers’ heaven”; Hay on Wye.
Day 1: Arrive in England, probably in London, but alternatives are possible. This first day is set aside for recovery and acclimatisation in London, so no plans for today.
Day 2: Visiting one of the famous London Antiques markets such as Campden Passage, Portobello Road, or Grays of Mayfair. If your interest is not just the buying of art and antiques, you could also spend some time in the Victoria and Albert Museum and gaze at the wonderful exhibits of your own particular specialist field.
Day 3: Out of London and along the old Bristol road to the market town of Hungerford. This little town has a fine array of antiques shops and markets dealing in everything branch of antiques imaginable. We then head onto our first base a cosy B and B, in a house dating back to the 13th century, in one of the best preserved historic villages in England, which seems to be the location for every period drama ever made, from Pride and Prejudice to Harry Potter.
Day 4: Off to Bath. In addition to some rather good antiques and book shops Bath is a magnificent example of Georgian extravagance and some of the best classical architecture in Europe. Plus the fascinating spectacle of the Roman Baths, and a delightful web of alleyways and streets with a wonderful and tempting range of shops, restaurants and tea-rooms.
Day 5: Poking around the little towns and villages of the Cotswolds, with a visit to Stow on the Wold and Chipping Campden. Both excellent places to pick up the occasional bargain as well as some outrageously expensive pieces!
Day 6: Heading west to Gloucester. With its magnificent limestone cathedral, dating back to the 11th Century. Gloucester is at the head of the Severn Estuary and the old dock warehouses are now a maze of shops, restaurants and a rather good antiques market.
Day 7: This is an unplanned day. This is not because we cannot think of anything for you to do today. We always like to keep some days free, so that you can fit in some unforeseen delight, which may only become apparent as time progresses. It also gives us flexibility to be able to schedule in antiques fairs as the dates on which they are held is published.
Day 8: A full day to revel in the delights of the book lovers paradise of Hay on Wye, or Y Gelli as it is know in Welsh. A unique Welsh border town which claims to have the largest concentration of new, second-hand and antique books in the world in its many bookshops, 34 at the last count. These range from tiny shops specializing in single subjects, such as horticulture and “Who Done It” novels, to vast emporia with thousands of books on every subject imaginable.
Day 9: Back towards the airport to be in place for your return flight on the following day. The route we take can be decided on what there is still left which you would like to see and do on the way.
Day 10: Back home to see exactly what is was that you picked up along the way.
- This is a suggested itinerary, which can be adjusted, adapted and altered to suit your requirements
- This tour can be also taken as a “self-drive” tour. Please contact us for details.
- All accommodation with private facilities, on a bed and breakfast basis
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