Visit historic Canterbury and the breathtaking Leeds Castle
International Friends guarantee - If your ship is late, we will wait!
Drop off available to over 200 London and Heathrow hotels, Heathrow airport terminals and London mainline train stations.
Exclusive tour in a luxury touring coach with professional guide
A full day tour and hotel transfer with collection at your cruise terminal. This service is available when Princess, Disney and Regent Seven Seas cruise ships are visiting Dover. You will be driven in an air conditioned touring bus with a professional guide accompanying you throughout the day. In a memorable day you will see historic Canterbury, with its world famous Cathedral, and the truly stunning Leeds Castle (entry to Castle and Gardens included), before driving into London through Greenwich.
At the end of the day the coach will take you to the central London hotels followed by Heathrow hotels. See details of hotels served towards the bottom of the page.
Your Day trip itinerary
Step aboard our luxury coach with our friendly driver and knowledgeable guide for a tour of the Garden of England, visiting historic Canterbury and beautiful Leeds Castle and a tour of the orchards, hop fields and vineyards of the county of Kent. But first of all, would-be invaders and peacetime travellers came face to face with the white cliffs of Dover and the mighty Dover Castle, the key to England. This fortress
dates back to Roman times and boasts a 2,000 year old lighthouse or Pharos. Within the huge defensive walls is the 12th century church of St Mary-le-Castro and one of the largest, most impressive Castle keeps in Britain. Hidden underneath in the soft chalk are miles and miles of tunnels built during the Napoleonic Wars and extended through World War II and again during the Cold War. This great fortress stands guard over the English Channel and is the first line of defence from invasion by sea.
We depart Dover and drive up and above the famous white cliffs, continuing through this chalk landscape, our guide will illustrate a history of this country from Celtic settlers and Roman invaders to the Saxon migration and the Norman conquest. All of these visitors have weighed ashore in Kent before moving further afield, leaving their footprints on this land, through Iron Age hill forts, Roman towns, Saxon churches and Norman castles.
Our first stop is the magnificent city of Canterbury with it's world famous cathedral. Formerly the Roman town of Durovernum Canticorum there is an excellent museum in the city dedicated to the Roman occupation of the 1st to 4th centuries. As the Saxon capital of the Kingdom of Kent it was here on Whit Sunday in 597AD that the Pope Gregory's representative and envoy St Augustine baptised King Ethelbert thus creating the historic heart of England's Christian heritage. In the cathedral, largely rebuilt by the Normans in the 11th century, you can see the tomb of King Henry IV and resting place of the hero of Poitiers, The Black Prince. We also learn of the death in 1170 of Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury. This 'murder in the cathedral' is known around the globe and the true nature of the involvement of Henry II is still open to debate today. Join our guide as we present the discussions both for and against in this dark and brutal event.
In Canterbury we include a guided walk, entry to the Cathedral is extra. You will have time to walk the narrow historic streets before we meet up again to tour this unique part of the country. Known as the Garden of England, simply because it provided London and other regions with fresh fruit and vegetables, not forgetting hops to flavour traditional English ale. We pass Oast Houses and Hop fields, orchards and vineyards as we make our way to Leeds Castle, described by Lord Conway as 'the loveliest castle in the world'. Entry is included to Leeds Castle and Gardens.
Set on two islands and dating back to 880AD, Leeds has been the home to many English Queens from the end of the 12th century to Tudor times. Beautiful landscaped gardens are a main feature of the grounds as is the stunning lake. Explore the historic interior and admire the delightful rooms then get lost in the famous maze.
Our departure mid afternoon will takes us straight into London to drop at your chosen hotel before our final drops at Heathrow airport by early evening. We drive into London through Royal Greenwich and then continue towards Tower Bridge with a view of the Tower of London, before starting our central London hotel drop offs.
Joining Procedure At Dover
As you exit the ship you will be met by International Friends staff outside the cruise terminal and directed to your coach. Princess and Regent are scheduled to arrive between 05:00 and 06:00 in the morning with disembarkation starting around 07:00. Your guide will meet you at the terminal building exit from 08:00. We plan to leave Southampton by 08:30. Disney Magic arrival times can vary and tend to be between 05:00 to 08:00. We plan to leave Dover between 08:30 and 10:00 (depending on ship arrival time). All Disney Magic customers will be contacted prior to their cruise departing to confirm the exact time. In the unlikely event your ship is delayed into port we will delay our departure time accordingly. For all delayed ship arrivals we will aim to leave at the latest one hour after docking (earlier if possible).
Arrival in London & Heathrow
Arriving in Central London 16:00-16:30 for Princess and Regent & 17:30-18:00 for Disney; we cover the vast majority of hotels in London city centre. We also drop at Victoria Coach/train station, Kings Cross/St.Pancras station and Paddington station. Please click on the link to see a complete list of drop off points.
If your hotel is not on the list please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can advise of the nearest drop off point to your hotel. When enquiring about hotel drop offs please ensure you provide us with the name and full address of the hotel.
After completing central London drop offs we will transfer passengers to all the major Heathrow hotels and terminals at around 18:00-18:30 for Princess & Regent Seven Seas, and 19:30-20:00 for Disney.
Please note on arrival in London we may use other vehicles to ensure we complete the drop offs as quickly and efficiently as possible. If this does happen our drivers, guides or tour managers will manage this.
Flying From Gatwick, Stansted or Luton Airports?
If you are flying from Gatwick, Stansted or Luton Airports we can drop you at Victoria Rail or Coach Station around 17:00-17.30 for Princess and Regent Seven Seas and 18:30-19:00 for Disney, where there are frequent trains and airport buses to each airport.
Guaranteed Departures - Please note this is a guaranteed cruise day trip transfer, and wil operate on all of the dates listed.
These dates are listed in the drop-down at the top right corner of this page. We will support other dates if 10 people have registered interest with us six weeks prior to departure. We find that using the Roll Call facility of Cruise Critic is a great way of getting a group of 10 registered quickly.
Or, if you prefer the option of a private cruise transfer from Dover, available for 1 or more people, click here to request a quote.
Booking Conditions And Payment
In order that we can guarantee your booking, you will need to make payment in full. However, all cruise transfer/tours which are booked from this webpage, are not subject to cancellation charges up to 42 days (6 weeks) prior to the the transfer/tour travel date. Within 41 days of your travel date, our normal booking conditions shall apply.
The luggage allowance is 2 large cases per passenger (maximum 23kgs per case) plus 2 pieces of hand luggage (max 10kg per case). If you have more than this you must contact our office prior to travel. We do not carry outsize items (eg bicycles) and you MUST inform us in advance if you have a wheelchair, mobility vehicle etc.