Ruins of St Andrews Castle
Ruins of St Andrews Castle

13 Holidays In 2019 Under £600 (5 Are Under £500!)

Here, at Brightwater, we know that taking an affordable holiday is often as important as taking a memorable one, which is why we have a range of trips that come in at under £600 per person.

From steam train breaks to flower shows, and from historic homes with royal connections to themed excursions that focus on subjects such as war or art, we have a variety of holidays on offer that won't break the bank. What's more, all of the following departures are for 2019, which means that you can still enjoy a great escape this year without forking out too much! Oh, and did we mention that the first five are all under £500pp?

Autumn Tints of Perthshire | £365pp

Departing on October 11th, this three-day mini-break offers you the chance to revel in the natural beauty of the season while taking in glorious Scottish scenery. Home to Europe's oldest tree, the world's highest hedge, Britain's tallest tree (and its widest conifer!), this part of the world is one for lovers of the great outdoors. On this trip, you'll get to admire the Meikleour Beech Hedge, see the ancient Birnam Oak and visit The Hermitage – a wild 'tree garden' created by the Dukes of Atholl in the 18th century. Accommodation is at a 900-acre Victorian estate and spa, the Crieff Hydro Hotel.

11th October: to book, click here.

Autumn Tints of Arran | £475pp

What are you doing this October? If you want to enjoy the autumnal beauty of Scotland, join us in Arran on a magical four-day holiday. Often described as "Scotland in miniature", Arran boasts a blend of Highland and Island scenery with granite peaks and deep glens to the north of the island, contrasting with its rolling and lush farmlands to the south. Sail across the Firth of Clyde and watch the mountains draw closer, visit Brodick Castle and soak up the views with a circular tour of the island. You'll stay at the comfortable Kinloch Hotel, located on the 'sunset side' of the island.

21st October: to book, click here.

Autumn Colours of the Cotswolds | £495pp

What finer place could there be to visit in this season of “mists and mellow fruitfulness” than the timeless English landscape of the Cotswolds? Marvel at the dazzling leaves at Westonbirt and Batsford arboreta, discover the secret gardens at Hidcote and wander around the tranquil gardens of Misarden Park on this four-day break. Elsewhere, you'll explore Snowshill Manor with its Arts & Crafts Garden and the unique Rococo gardens at Painswick. Your hotel will be the DeVere Cotswold Water Park, which has a spa and boasts stylish rooms - as well as a view that overlooks a lake. 

18th October: to book, click here. 

Battlefields of the First World War | £495pp

With two departures – one on the 11th and another on the 18th October – this historical tour is sure to linger in the memory long after you return home. After a free afternoon to discover Lille at leisure, the next three days will be filled with visits and tours. Explore the Flanders regions in Belgium, the museum at Talbot House, Tyne Cot and the Somme region of France. You'll take tours of museums, where stories of the war will be brought to life through exhibitions, there will be contemplative visits to monuments and sites of significance, and your guide for the four-day trip will be WW1 expert David MacLennan.

11th or 18th October: to book, click here. 

The V&A - Museum and Arts Tour | £499pp

If you're something of a culture lover, this is the trip for you. Our four-day tour begins with a visit to Kellie Castle with its Arts & Crafts garden. From here, we discover the newly opened V&A Museum in Dundee, the McManus Gallery & Museum and Glamis Castle, which was the childhood home of the Queen Mother. You'll also visit the RRS Discovery, one of the last three-masted wooden ships built in Britain, and take time to wander around the Perth Museum and Art Gallery. Your accommodation on this trip is the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel in Dundee.

6th October: to book, click here. (6th June is also available, but for £545pp)

In the Footsteps of the Picts | £545pp

Living beyond the northern frontier of the Roman Empire, the people of northern Scotland in the Dark Ages were known as the Picts – a name given by the Romans meaning the ‘painted - tattooed ones'. This four-day tour will see you follow in their footsteps. From a curator-led tour of Pictish jewellery and sculpture in the National Museum of Scotland to the magnificent Pictish stones at Aberlemno, there is much to discover. You'll take a boat trip to the Isle of May and visit Forteviot, a palace of the Pictish kings. This is one for the archaeologists among us. 

2nd August: to book, click here. (7th June and 30th August also available, but for £575pp) 

Gardens of Dumfries & Galloway | £575pp

In the south-western corner of Scotland, Dumfries and Galloway are home to some of the country’s most attractive gardens and artists. The artistic highlight of our tour is undoubtedly Dumfries House in Ayrshire, whose future has been secured with the support of Prince Charles. Admire plants from around the globe at the Logan Botanic Gardens, see the tranquil pond at the heart of Glenwhan Gardens, and explore the treasure trove of fine art that is Drumlanrig Castle. You'll stay at a grade B-listed Georgian mansion on the edge of Dumfries for this tour. 

11th September: to book, click here. (Other dates and 2020 available at different prices)

Gardens of North Wales | £595pp

Set amongst glorious scenery that includes the mountains of Snowdonia, dramatic seascapes and ancient castles, North Wales is home to some outstanding gardens. One of the best is Plas Cadnant, which 20 years ago was an overgrown, abandoned wilderness of ivy and decrepit fruit trees. Its new owner has brought it back to life and, rather like Heligan in Cornwall, Plas Cadnant has emerged as a gem of a garden, full of interest. Elsewhere, admire the film-set surroundings of Portmeirion, Bodnant's exotic plants and the stately gardens at Powis Castle. The hotel throughout the tour will be the Celtic Royal Hotel in Caernarfon, which has an indoor heated pool and steam room. 

7th June: to book, click here. (Dates in 2020 available for different prices)

Highgrove & the Cotswolds | £595pp

Enjoy a memorable visit to Highgrove House, the country home of HRH the Prince of Wales. This is a privileged opportunity to see these charming gardens, which are cultivated using wholly organic methods. Some of the finest gardens in England are to be found nestled among the green and rolling hills of Gloucestershire, and you'll also get to discover the secret gardens at Hidcote, wander around the tranquil gardens of Misarden Park and tour the world renowned Kiftsgate Court gardens. You'll stay at the comfortable DeVere Cotswold Water Park throughout this four-day tour, also taking in the house and gardens of Rodmarton Manor – an Arts & Crafts house with an eight-acre garden – and the stunning National Arboretum at Westonbirt.

9th May, 28th June or 9th August: to book, click here. (Other dates available for different prices)

Gardens & Architecture of the Firth of Clyde | £595pp

“Art is the flower. Life is the green leaf.” It’s almost as if Charles Rennie Mackintosh were describing our tour himself. Join us as we visit some of his greatest works as well as other architectural marvels and fine gardens in and around the Firth of Clyde. From the views over the River Clyde that are admired from Hill House to the Gothic splendour of Mount Stuart, this is a stunning four-day tour. There will also be an indulgent afternoon tea at the world-famous Mackintosh at the Willow Tearooms, a tour of Ascog Hall Fernery and a visit to the Scotland Street School, designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh for the School Board of Glasgow. Accommodation is at the charming Gleddoch House Hotel.

16th September: to book, click here.

Historic Houses of Scottish Borders | £595pp

Often overlooked in comparison with the Highlands and Islands, the Scottish Borders' grandeur and drama are impressive. However, they have a quiet, understated beauty of their own, with softly rolling hills draped in early morning mist, peaceful valleys dotted with sheep farms and the salmon-filled River Tweed, which runs like a silver thread from the Lowther Hills to the sea at Berwick. Discover the opulence of Floors Castle, visit Traquair House and see Sir Walter Scott's personal collections at Abbotsford.

7th July or 26th September: To book, click here. 

Gardens of Cheshire & RHS Flower Show Tatton Park | £595pp

The Royal Horticultural Society will once again bring a spectacular celebration of flowers and gardening to the north-west of England with the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park. Set against the splendour of Tatton Park’s 1000-acre deer park, the show will be full of attractions, imaginative and colourful displays, original back-to-back small gardens and exciting show gardens. Elsewhere, you'll see one of the first herbaceous borders ever planted in England at Arley Hall and you'll wander around the glorious wetland gardens of Stonyford Cottage. Accommodation is at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Chester.

17th July: to book, click here. 

Classic English Steam Break | £595pp

The haunting, evocative sound of steam whistles still echo round the hills and dales of the English Lake District. Whether it’s the full size steam engines on the Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway, the small but powerful narrow-gauge locomotives of the Ravenglass and Eskdale or the elegant steam yacht Gondola slipping across the calm waters of Coniston, there is steam aplenty in this most beautiful corner of England. Enjoy boat trips on Windermere, Coniston and the River Weaver, along with two steam-hauled train journeys. During this four-day tour, you'll stay at Crooklands Hotel near Kendal.

16th September: to book, click here. 

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13 Holidays In 2019 Under £600 (5 Are Under £500!) was published on 25 April 2019