2022 Springtime Gardens of Europe & UK
Commences: 7 May 2022 Amsterdam and includes a full day at Floriade 2022, and a full day at the Chelsea Flower Show
‘Book with Confidence’ Guarantee (see below) Also available as a 7 day or 14 day tour 2023 Tour Details ›
Now with the post-tour option of 4 days in the Austrian Alps and a performance of the once a decade Oberammergau Passion Play ›

Tour dates highlighted - Click on a date to view details.

May 2022

Book with Confidence Guarantee:

Our European inbound operators have guaranteed that, should there be travel restrictions imposed by our government, the deposits paid will be rolled over to the same tour the following year, with guaranteed seats.

In light of the Australian Treasurer’s advice on May 11th 2021, that overseas travel will continue to be restricted for Australians until mid-2022, we invite you to book with confidence on the The dates for the 2023 Gardens are not yet finalised, but will be as soon as the date of the Chelsea Flower Show is advised. This is usually 18 months prior.

The ‘Add-on’ tour is still uncertain for 2023 as there are no plans at this stage to defer the Oberammergau Passion Play beyond 2022. Thank you for your understanding and support during these very trying times.

Tour highlights: Chelsea Flower Show, Floriade 2022, Keukenhof Gardens, Monet’s Garden, Villandry, Castle Howard, Harewood Holehird, Chatsworth, Stowe, Hidcote and Wisley.

Sights: ‘Heartbeat Country’, Heriot’s Yorkshire Dales, Lake District, Cotswold Villages


Day 1, Saturday, May 7th  

The tour commences at check-in to our city centre hotel, our home for four nights. We rest from the flight, or take an afternoon canal cruise to get our bearings, before meeting our fellow travellers for a Welcome Drink and Dinner. [D]


Day 2, Sunday, May 8th  

Every day on a Great Trains of Europe Tour begins with a full buffet breakfast [B]. We spend a full day in one of the world’s finest bulbfields, the Keukenhof Garden, with 80 acres of tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and other flowering bulbs, shrubs, ancient trees, exhibitions, gurgling streams, flower parades, and seven themed gardens. Little wonder we need all day to visit the Keukenhof! There are restaurants and tea shops. [B]


Day 3, Monday, May 9th  

An early start to visit the world’s largest flower market at Aarlsmeer, where 19 million stems are auctioned everyday. In the afternoon we visit the historic and beautiful Dutch city of Delft, home of Vermeer, and imagine what Amsterdam might have looked like centuries ago. [B]


Day 4, Tuesday, May 10th  

2022 is the year of the world-famous once-a-decade Floriade Expo. The town of Almere, less than 30 minutes from our Amsterdam hotel, hosts the event this decade. We enjoy a full day at Floriade. [B]


Day 5, Wednesday, May 11th  ^ Top ^

A great rail journey today. Our luggage is taken on ahead as we take our reserved First Class seats in the sleek Thalys train, for Paris at 300kph. On arrival we settle in to our 4 star hotel on the Left Bank. On our city sightseeing tour we begin our acquaintance with the City of Lights. [B] [D]


Day 6, Thursday, May 12th  

A quiet morning to stroll in the nearby Luxembourg Gardens or to visit a museum. Monet’s waterlilies are finally on view in their original context at l’Orangerie. See them in real life this afternoon on our visit to Giverney and Monet’s Garden. We enjoy the flower garden called Clos Normand and the water garden with its famous Japanese Bridge covered with wisteria, which should be at its best this week. Then the weeping willows, and the famous nympheas (water lilies). [B]


Day 7, Friday, May 13th  

A high speed French TGV train today into the Loire Valley and the Garden of Villandry, created by Dr Joachim Carvallo, from 1906, in complete harmony with the Renaissance architecture of the chateau. Great horticultural skill was deployed, especially in the use of vegetables. An arbour of grape vines leads to a great parterre, conceived as a Garden of Music. On the other side of the canal is a Garden of Love. [B]

To North York Moors

Day 8, Saturday, May 14th  

Another of the great rail journeys of the world as we farewell Paris and join the 300 kph Eurostar through the Chunnel. Customs requires that we travel with our luggage today. In London we join British Rail in the tracks of the Flying Scotsman to the mediaeval city of York. We see the Minster and the Shambles, then transfer to our inn in the North York Moors village of Pickering. A pub dinner tonight. [B] [D]

North York Moors

Day 9, Sunday, May 15th  

This morning we visit the gardens of Castle Howard, laid out by Sir John Vanburgh in the early 18th century. Castle Howard is the palace of the Flyte family in “Brideshead Revisited”. We lunch (with Claude Jeremiah Greengrass?) in the village of Goathland, “Aidens field” in the TV series ‘Heartbeat’. Here we join the historic North York Steam Railway home to Pickering. [B]

North York Moors

Day 10, Monday, May 16th  ^ Top ^

This morning we visit historic Harewood House. Its garden is classic Capability Brown - forming an idyllic rural setting. We move on to the spa and garden town of Harrogate for a cream tea or a stroll around Harrogate’s famous public gardens. Can you spot Agatha Christie? She ‘disappeared’ here in 1926. [B]

Lake District

Day 11, Tuesday, May 17th  

We journey this morning through the Yorkshire Dales, immortalized in James Herriot’s “All Creatures Great and Small” novels and television series. A village pub lunch stop, then on to the Lake District where we settle into our Lakeside hotel. [B] [D]

Lake District

Day 12, Wednesday, May 18th  

This morning we visit a very special Lakeland garden, Holehird, which specialises in Lakeland flora and offers sweeping views of Lake Windermere. A bit of whimsy on the way home: we drop in on Beatrix Potter’s garden, Hill Top - watch out for the fierce bad rabbit. [B]

Lake District

Day 13, Thursday, May 19th  

We take a magical rail journey today through some of the Dales’ and England’s finest scenery on the historic Settle to Carlisle Railway. A pub lunch, an afternoon cream tea and visits to some more of the Yorkshire Dales’ picturesque villages. [B]

To the Cotswolds

Day 14, Friday, May 20th  

Our British Rail journey south today brings us to the Peak District of Derbyshire, to visit the gardens of historic Chatsworth House, dating from 1687. Another Capability Brown garden, Chatsworth has been famous for its beauty since Jane Austen’s Day. We move on in the late afternoon to the Cotswolds where we stay in a village inn in the pretty riverside village of Bourton-on-the-Water. [B] [D]


Day 15, Saturday, May 21st  ^ Top ^

This morning’s sightseeing takes us to picturesque Cotswold villages of honey-golden stone: Lower Slaughter, Stow-on-the-Wold, Chipping Campden. After a village pub lunch we visit one of England’s favourite gardens - Hidcote Manor, designed and developed by Maj. Lawrence Johnston, who scoured the world to secure rare and exotic species for this extremely pretty garden, a series of “outdoor rooms”. [B]


Day 16, Sunday, May 22nd  

Today we visit Stowe Landscape Gardens, covering 750 acres and including 40 listed historic monuments and temples. It is considered one of England’s most important landscape gardens and the greatest names in English garden design were involved in its creation from Bridgeman in the 1710s to Vanbrugh, Kent, Gibbs and “Capability ” Brown. Afternoon tea in the Cotswold village of Burford, serious about antiques. [B]

To London

Day 17, Monday, May 23rd  

Back on British Rail today we journey through more of the Cotswolds’ rolling hills, as our luggage is taken on ahead to await our arrival in our London hotel. We enjoy London’s sights from a double-decker bus. The Oxford Street shops are only a bus ride away from the hotel. A West End Show tonight? [B]


Day 18, Tuesday, May 24th  

The Oxford Street shops or Harrods this morning before an afternoon excursion to the Royal Horticultural Society’s Wisley Garden, where keen English gardeners have gone to be inspired for over 100 years. Spread out over 240 acres, Wisley is a lovely, peaceful place for a stroll as well as a demonstration garden full of practical garden design ideas and cultivation techniques. [B]


Day 19, Wednesday, May 25th  

When a man (person) is tired of London, s/he is tired of life,” spake Dr Johnson. Today we have a full day to do the London of the tourists commencing with the Changing of the Guard. Perhaps you would like to join your Tour Director in a visit to the famous Kew Gardens in London this afternoon. [B][D]


Day 20, Thursday, May 26th  ^ Top ^

A full day today at the renown Chelsea Flower Show, arguably the world’s greatest and best known. Our Farewell Dinner tonight. [B][D]

Heading Home

Day 21, Friday, May 27th  

Our tour ends this morning after breakfast. Thank you for your company on the Great Trains of Europe Tours. [B]

Tour costs:  

$AUD 12,950 ($NZ 13,600) per person Twin Share. Land Content only join in Amsterdam, leave in London

Single Room supplement - none applies.

Book with Confidence Guarantee:

Our European inbound operators have guaranteed that, should there be travel restrictions imposed by our government, the deposits paid will be rolled over to the same tour the following year, with guaranteed seats.

What’s included?^ Top ^  

  • First Class rail travel in reserved seats
  • 4 star boutique city centre hotels
  • 3 or 4 star historic village inns
  • 6 dinners
  • Full luggage handling [not on Eurostar]
  • All garden entrances with local expert guide [where permitted]
  • Full time Tour Leader who is the Tour Company Principal

The TOUR COST does NOT include:^ Top ^

  • Hotel incidentals (eg. Mini-bars, telephone calls, laundry), airport and departure taxes, local transport in any city,
  • Meals other than breakfast and the one restaurant dinner in each city - the first night in each new city, except London where it takes the form of a farewell dinner. On other nights, the Tour Leaders are available to accompany group members to local, authentic restaurants.

Commences 27 May 2022

Post-tour add-on Oberammergau Passion Play  

Now with the post-tour option of 4 days in the Austrian Alps and a performance of the once a decade Oberammergau Passion Play.

To Igls, Austria [B]

Day 1, Friday, May 27th  

Farewell London this morning as we make our way to the airport for our flight back to the European Continent and our Austrian Alpine chalet, in the village of Igls overlooking Innsbruck. [B]

The Passion Play - Igls, Austria [B]

Day 2, Saturday, May 28th  

We ride a tram down the mountain today for our exploration of the city of Innsbruck, the Winter Capital of the Hapsburg dynasty, and a ride to the top of the Alps for a breathtaking view from 7,000 feet. [B]

Igls, Austria [B]

Day 3, Sunday, May 29th  

This morning we cross the German border to the village of Oberammergau where we take our 1st category seats for the first half of the Passion Play performance this afternoon. Prepare for an inspirational experience as we re-live the last week of the earthly life of Jesus. There is a break across dinner time and then we return for the climax of the performance. We are transferred back to our Alpine chalet tonight, emotionally drained, but inspired. [B]

Igls, Austria [B]

Day 4, Monday, May 30th  

After the big day at the Passion Play yesterday and last night, a quiet day today to wind down in the chalet pool and spa, or do that last minute shopping. The Swarovski factory is nearby. [B]

Homeward Bound

Day 5, Tuesday, May 31st  ^ Top ^

The tour ends after breakfast. There is a transfer to Munich Airport for those flying home today. [B]

Oberammergau Passion Play Add-On Cost:
$AUD$1,950 per person twin share or $2,450 single, including the flight from London to Germany, the Passion Play performance and the 4 nights in the Austrian Alps hotel with breakfasts, and a transfer to Munich Airport on the last morning.

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Resource: Printed: 2021-06-20
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