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Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

Little Neck, New...
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Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

Going to London in June 2013. Would like to hire a personal guide to visit outside of London--Stonehenge (private access), Bath, Cotswold-- for one day. The standard tour companies dates/times don't fit into our schedule. Thanks!

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Watford
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1. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

http://www.windsordaytours.co.uk

Jill is a one woman band so you will have to check availability but she will tailor make your day and specialises in Stonehenge. I do though wonder if you are trying to pack too much in. At least daylight will be at it's maximum in June.

You can also contact a few Blue Badge driver guides and see what they suggest - http://www.driver-guides.org.uk/index.html

U.S. expats
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2. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

Set this up well in advance.

San Diego
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3. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

When I was researching our trip, I was in contact with two TA members who had hired private guides for day trips out of London. Below are the reviews they posted; I PMd them for more details. We ended up renting a car for the day, so I can't give a first-hand account.

One booked a guide through London Walks www.walks.com

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g186338-d187…

and the other used stoneseekers.net.

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g528762-d188…

Little Neck, New...
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4. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

Thank you all for your replies. I will look into the sites you have suggested. And Adamhornets, I think you are right about trying to see too much at once, Thanks.

UK
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5. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

The standard tour companies dates/times don't fit into our schedule. Thanks!

-----

They run tours every day of the week so how can the dates not fit into your schedule?

If it's times, if you think they take too long, then you can be assured they are trying to cram as much in as possible, trying to do it in less time will be even more rushed than a normal tour.

Or if you wanted to take longer, places close , Windsor castle closes for new tours after about 4pm for example.

London
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6. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

The standard tour companies dates/times don't fit into our schedule. Thanks!

=======================================================

Special Access takes place outside public opening hours early morning or in the evening. This means you either have to be leaving London about 5 to 6 a.m. or returning late evening.

Nobody will be able to give you a special access tour that operates during the day time as there is no special access between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. and Stonehenge is best part of 2 hours drive from London.

The other problem with Special Access with private guides is that you have to apply for tickets yourself well in advance direct from Stonehenge, also buying a ticket for the guide.In the summer special access is normally sold out several months in advance.

The sole exception is Pat Shelley the best Stonehenge guide, but he is based in Salisbury and won't come to London to pick you up.

Edited: 05 December 2012, 08:32
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7. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

Ah I see this is partly about "special access" which I missed.

FWIW, having done both, I think you get a better view of the stones when in normal access since when trying to take pictures of the stones, in special access there are people all round them, whereas in ordinary viewing, they are a little way back, so you actually get an uninterrupted view.

Little Neck, New...
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8. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

But, I understand that the closest you can get to the stones in normal access is 100-150 feet away. Is that correct?

Exmoor National...
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9. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

Yes, to the distance - but bear in mind that traffic from around Andover to beyond the stones will be horrendous! Us locals don't go anywhere near Stonehenge mornings/evenings or weekends from April to October, and definitely only via the back roads/shanks pony around June 21st.

The moving car park aka the A303 is not particularly edifying!

If you want a more personal visit, and are reasonably mobile, visit near sunset or sunrise and park a mile or so away and walk up towards the stone. On a good day, this can indeed be magical.

(There is a little track which runs from the A303 west of the stones to the A344 which you can usually park in and view the stones. This is blocked off for Solstice)

Little Neck, New...
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10. Re: Private guide to Stonehenge, etc.

Thank you all for taking the time to answer my questions. I'd like to ask a few more questions on this topic: If I hire a private guide, do I pay for his/her meals when we stop for lunch/dinner? Also, am I expected to give a tip at the end of a private tour? If so, how much? Thank you very much, again, for your advice.