Private best of English countryside & pubs tours from London

Design your own day tour, go where you want, stay as long as you want. Cars to large coaches

Castle Combe Village
Castle Combe village

Private, personalised high quality tours from a car tour to a full size touring coach

At the London Toolkit we are very close to a lot of private tour providers from one man bands specialising in a niche subject to the large day tour operators featured elsewhere on this web site aimed at the generalist tourist.

We do not directly provide a custom tour, our role is to listen to your needs, discuss a realistic itinerary and then put you in touch with an appropriate provider for your need.

About tour   Example private itinerary   About Avebury   About Lacock   About Castle Combe   Add on Stonehenge or Bath   Map of popular tourist sights south England   Driver/guide options   Private car prices   Coaches   Enquiry form

Vehicles, driver/guides + scope of private tours

Private car hire with driver English countryside and pubs
Choose your vehicle for your private countryside tours

A range of touring vehicles with capacities ranging from 1 to 60 seats are available. We charge a flat fee per vehicle (not person) for the day.

This includes the vehicle and services of the driver guide or guide. You have the option of just having a driver with no professional guiding provided which will save you some money.

Admissions to attractions are not included in the core fee, but can be arranged.

You can design your own day and just present us with an itinerary specification if you wish.

Just enter your requirement on our our private tour request form.

On this page we outline one of the most popular tour itineraries people request.

On the menu to the right are links to some other very popular private tour ideas.

Example private tour template: Best of English Countryside & Pubs

This is a great day out enjoying some of the best of the English countryside and villages outside of London.

As with all our example custom tours, this is just an idea to build upon. The great thing about a custom tour is that you choose when you want to go and how long you spend at each destination.

This particular tour has great scope for flexibility in terms of departure time, especially in the summer months.

You'll want to see the countryside in daylight, so it makes logistical sense to leave your hotel around 8am for this tour. (We'll assume this departure time in this example.)

It is also possible to work in a very late morning departure, returning to London in the evening, (at the height of the summer dusk is around 21:30).


Avebury henge
Avebury henge

After leaving London behind we take the old coach road to Bath, through Hungerford, Marlborough, along the Kennet valley and through the Savernake Forest.

Evidence of this once important route lies all around us, historic coaching inns, chalk hill figures cut into the downland, obscure monuments to long forgotten characters and a subtle change in the landscape as we head into the golden stone villages of the Cotswold and Mendip hills.

We arrive at Avebury about 2 hours after leaving London. Avebury vied with Stonehenge at the time of the Neolithic in terms of importance. We pass Silbury Hill, Europe's largest man made mound and Neolithic burial mounds before travelling down the 'Avenue of Stones' to Avebury itself.

The Marlborough Downs here are the source of the largest stones at Stonehenge, about 20 miles south. Avebury is a larger henge than Stonehenge. Relatively unvisited, you can walk among and touch the stones here, unlike Stonehenge.

Avebury also has a worthwhile Saxon village within it, complete with Dovecote, thatched cottages and pubs, Manor House, historic church and much else besides including entry into a neolithic burial mound. Our driver/guide again will offer a walking tour.

We leave Avebury late morning for the very scenic 30 minute drive to Lacock. Unlike the scheduled coach tours, you will have an hour in Windsor before the castle opens, there are several options, including having an extra hour in bed for a later departure time.

Avebury - more details

Lacock via Devizes

Lacock Abbey
Lacock Abbey

We take a scenic route to Lacock, our lunch stop. At Devizes, the first town along the way is the impressive sight of Caen Hill Locks. Built in the early 19th century, before the railways, the Kennet and Avon canal links the Thames and Avon rivers, enabling coast to coast river travel from London to Bristol.

Perhaps we'll see a narrowboat using the locks that climb Caen Hill on the 3 hour ascent/descent. Many will want to take a closer look.

Then on towards Lacock we may make photo stops at a photogenic thatched cottage complete with gardens lovingly sculptured by the resident gardener, and a great viewpoint over the Avon valley with Lacock in the valley below.

Lacock is an old wool town where all the buildings in the village are more than 200 years old, much of it much older. It is not a museum piece, but a living working village with school, post office, church, tithe barn, bakery and several pubs.

Lacock village is owned by the National Trust, all the occupants including the pubs rent from the National Trust. The National Trust controls strictly the village environment, apart from vehicles it could be back a few hundred years ago, no streetlights, no aerials, only approved 'authentic' colour schemes.

With this olde worlde feel, Jane Austen and some Harry Potter films are just examples of films shot here.

We heartily recommend you take lunch in The George Inn, a 13th century pub, the oldest licensed pub in England. It's refreshingly free of the tourist trail, many of the customers will be locals. Apart from the excellent home cooked food chalked up on the boards at reasonable prices, the pub itself has much of interest.

Lacock - more details

Castle Combe

Castle Combe
Castle Combe

Castle Combe is an idyllic South Cotswold village just 20 minutes from Lacock.

There is no longer a castle at Castle Combe, but down in the combe (steep river valley) is the lovely Cotswold village, Castle Combe.

The single track road we use to access the village means the big bus tours can't come here, as a result it's a relatively unspoilt gem - much quieter and authentic than the more famous Cotswold villages further north.

Castle Combe - more details

Optional Stonehenge or Bath

If you would like to combine some English countryside with a major sightseeing location then Stonehenge or Bath are easily integrated into an itinerary, (see below).

Pure countryside tour

castle combe

08:00 - Leave London hotel

10:00 - 11:15 Avebury

12:45 - 14:30 Lacock

15:00 - 15:45 Castle Combe     

18:00 Arrive back London     

Countryside & Bath


08:00 - Leave London hotel

10:00 - 11:00 Avebury

11:30 - 13:00 Lacock (direct)

13:30 - 15:45 Bath     

18:00 Arrive back London

Countryside & Stonehenge


08:00 - Leave London hotel

10:00 - 11:15 Avebury

11:45 - 13:15 Lacock (direct)

14:15 - 16:00 Stonehenge     

18:00 Arrive back London   

Map of tour options from London

Driver & guiding options

Everybody's requirements are different! - You may just need a professional driver to transport your group to where you want to go or you may need a level of guiding and commentary.

  • Driver only - If you prefer an experienced driver who is familiar with our touring routes but does not offer tour guiding, please select “Driver only” as your tariff.

  • Driver/guide - If you would like an experienced driver who can also guide from the vehicle, please select “Driver/guide” as your tariff.

  • Driver with additional guide - For larger groups a separate guide may be appropriate. Particularly at some of the large cities and towns where parking is a problem in the centre.

  • Touring coaches for large groups - Full size coaches that can accommodate the largest groups in comfort are also available with guides. By their nature these tours are very different from each other so just outline your requirements on the enquiry form at the bottom of the page to start a dialogue.

A day tour is a tour of around 9-10 hours at a time of your choosing. Drivers have very strict legal limits on the time they are allowed to drive each day and there are rules also on the frequency of driver breaks too. These are not normally an issue, but if they are the matter will be raised at the quotation stage.

Prices includes all fees except for food/drink and admissions to attractions which can be quoted for separately.


(Rates do not include attraction admissions or food)

1-3 passengers + 8x luggage
Standard car

Driver only from £699

Driver / guide from £899

Driver & guide from £999

1-6 passengers + 8x luggage
7 seater executive car

Driver only from £799

Driver / guide from £999

Driver & guide from £1099

7-16 passengers + 16x luggage
7 seater executive car

Driver onlyfrom £999

Driver / guide from £1199

Driver & guide from £1299

Up to 53 passengers + 65x luggage
7 seater executive car

Driver only from £1199

Driver & guide from £1499

Full size touring coaches for large groups

Premium Tours coach
Premium Tours coach

If you have a large group then that is not a problem either.

The largest coaches are 50-72 seat coaches but we also have access to vehicles half that size.

With large groups on cruise tour transfers the capacity issue is not normally passenger numbers but luggage.

UK coaches are built to European traveller requirements, where one large case is perfectly adequate. A typical 50 seat coach will be able to accommodate around 60 large cases in the luggage hold.

For a group travelling with North American flight allowances a 50 seat coach will typically only be able to accommodate the luggage of 35 such passengers maximum.

With large groups just as small groups, multi- drop and pick-ups from hotels is routine and if required we can arrange a guide.

Tour planning & formal quotations

Some people have a tight specification of exactly what they want, others just have a broad idea of what they like and want to see and let us plan something that meets that need. We are comfortable with either type of request.

Tours are customised for each individual group. Go where you want to go at a pace you decide. Use the form below to outline your requirements and start a dialogue.

Every effort is made to keep all our information correct and the advertised prices up to date. We endeavour to be as accurate a source of information as possible but Travellers Toolkits cannot be held responsible for any price differential between our stated prices and those of the companies supplying the product or accuracy of information provided on our sites.