April 7th 2016

Downton Abbey is no more and we have reluctantly said our goodbyes to the Crawley family. But there is a final farewell to say – on The Wayfarers’ very last Downton Abbey Walk in the heart of the English countryside. There are just two rooms still available on our Walk in July, so don’t miss the chance to join in and visit see the real Downton – Highclere Castle. The castle, with its towers, turrets and some 300 rooms, had a starring role as the Crawleys’ family seat, but in real life the 8th Earl of Carnarvon and his family live here. Only open to the public for between 60 and 70 days a year, the majestic Edwardian mansion, designed by Sir Charles Barry, the architect of the Houses of Parliament in London, is quite as imposing as its fictional alter-ego. The castle itself is just one highlight of a tour that explores some of the UK’s most impossibly pretty villages, including Bampton, which featured as a backdrop for many of Downton Abbey’s exterior scenes. Bowood House on the Downton Abbey Walk with The Wayfarers And this is a special year to visit Bowood House, home of the Marquis and Marchioness of Lansdowne. The gardens there, with a flowing mix of plantations and sweeping lawns leading down to a winding mile-long lake, are said to be one of the finest examples of the work of Lancelot 'Capability' Brown. 2016 is the tercentenary of his birth, with special events and an exhibition planned.

Explore timeless villages

After lunch at Bowood, we visit Lacock, a village so timeless it has featured in many movies and as Cranford on television. And in this lush, rolling landscape there is not only history, but pre-history too. Downton Abbey Walk with The Wayfarers Avebury stone circle is the largest in Europe and we explore this ring of mysterious monoliths as well as hiking past one of the famous, dramatic white horses of Wiltshire, carved in to the pale chalk of the hillside. Contact us now to reserve your place on our final Downton Abbey Walk, for a quintessentially English experience.

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