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Susan Worner Tours

Welcome to Susan Worner Tours

Welcome to Susan Worner Tours. We are delighted to present our programme for 2020, featuring garden tours in France, Italy, Portugal and Morocco. An exciting new destination is added this year with enchanting gardens, famed for their roses, in the Beaujolais region of France. Plus there are some innovations and surprises in our established itineraries, including the much-loved classic garden tours.

We discovered the superb gardens of Morocco several years ago and we continue to be inspired by the ever-increasing choice of well-designed private properties to which we have access. Among them, Le Jardin Secret is tucked away in a quiet corner of the otherwise bustling medina of Marrakech. Recently restored and developed by Italian owners, it features two courtyard gardens. One, an Exotic Garden, has been skillfully planted by Tom Stuart-Smith, while the second is inspired by Persian tradition and features olive and citrus trees under-planted with rippling grasses and scented herbs. Water channels, coloured tiles and ceramic pots are integral to the design, as is so often the case in Morocco. Our nine-day tour encompasses Marrakech and environs, as well as Taroudant to the south, and much more. 30 March – 07 April

In May we visit Venice and its hinterland, the Veneto. Our hotel is in a quiet area, the Dorsoduro, yet offers views over the Grand Canal. We use private water taxis to travel between gardens, and add a day exploring the mysterious and peaceful Lagoon. 04 – 09 May

Early June in Provence is a perfect time to discover private gardens, many created by exceptional designers. Notable among them is the iconic La Louve by the late Nicole de Vésian – truly a source of inspiration for our own gardens at home! Our base is the acclaimed Hotel La Mirande, situated close to the Papal Palace in Avignon. Sensitively restored, this family-run hotel has a Michelin-starred restaurant. 01 – 06 June

Our September tour to Tuscany features properties in the area of Florence, Pienza and Lucca. Among the outstanding gardens we visit is La Pietra, created by Harold Acton in the first part of the Twentieth Century and now beautifully restored; we are given an in-depth guided tour by curator Nick Dakin-Elliot. Our journey through Tuscany is against a backdrop of landscapes of great beauty, with the additional attraction of wine tasting and delicious meals. 01 – 08 September

Later in the month we gain an insight into the gardens of Portugal with our tour to Lisbon and Sintra where we discover different styles of design and landscaping. In Sintra we are joined by Gerald Luckhurst, who has worked for many years on the restoration of historical gardens in the country. We then head north to the Douro Valley with its superb gardens surrounded by vines planted on steep hillsides. Autumn is the season for the grape harvest – and for enjoying the changing colours of nature in the surrounding countryside. 20 – 26 September

We are now pleased to announce the dates for our tours to southern Africa:

03 – 16 November 2020: South Africa – Gardens of the Western Cape
16 – 28 November 2020: Namibia – Skeleton Coast


© Alastair Marsh Photography

 
Our tailor-made programmes are increasingly in demand. We offer itineraries for groups of about eight participants for gardens in Europe and a minimum of four participants for southern Africa. We also receive many requests for our special garden tours from horticultural groups around the world.

We have further developed our private tours to Namibia, Botswana and South Africa, and can offer some very special destinations to experience the flora and wildlife, often unique to the region.

Susan Worner Tours takes great care to uphold and even improve on standards. We pay meticulous attention to detail, and seek constantly to incorporate special extras in our itineraries. It is a particular delight to welcome back many participants who have travelled with us before. An important principle is to keep groups small, with a maximum 16 participants for garden tours and just eight for South Africa and Namibia – in our experience, these smaller groups tend to work very well.

For further information or enquiries, please contact us by telephone or email.

We look forward to welcoming you on one of our 2020 tours.

Susan Worner