Colourful history, impressive architecture and a variety of scenery awaits you as we explore Great Britain and Ireland at a leisurely pace. With a number of two and three night stops you will truly experience the historical cities, quaint villages and bustling market towns. We’ve included some unique journeys such as a canal trip on the Grand Union Canal and a train across the Yorkshire Moors along with visits to Lord Nelson’s Ship at Portsmouth, the Royal Yacht Britannia, the Titanic Exhibition and the Giants Causeway. There simply isn’t a more comprehensive UK and Ireland experience to be found.
“We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open” - Jawaharial Nehru
1 JUNE - 1 JULY • 25 DAYS
NEW ZEALAND – SINGAPORE transit Singapore
Day 1 We depart New Zealand, leaving the cool of winter behind as we head for the warmth of Singapore for our overnight transit before arriving in the heart of England.
SINGAPORE – MANCHESTER – YORK three nights York
Day 2 On arrival we’ll be transferred by coach to picturesque York. York is totally unique offering examples of Roman, Dark Age, Viking, and Medieval times. The walls surrounding the city are over two miles in length and with a history stretching back nearly 2,000 years. We’ll take a wander and familiarise ourselves with the city of York before giving you the rest of the day to relax.
Day3 We spend the day exploring all the city has to offer. There is time to visit the Jorviik Centre, wander the quaint cobbled streets ‘the Shambles’ and pay a visit to the famed ‘Minster’. Train enthusiasts will enjoy a visit to the renowned National Railway Museum, with a collection of over 100 locomotives including The Royal Carriages.
Day 4 Today we take an excursion to the Yorkshire Moors and Captain Cook Country. Our coach takes us to the town of Pickering where we board a train to cross the Yorkshire Moors. Our journey takes us via Goathland Station (featured in the TV series Heartbeat and in the Harry Potter movies). We disembark at the old whaling town of Whitby with time to meander and descend the steps from the old Abbey. It was here that Captain Cook began his apprenticeship, learning about navigation and seamanship.
YORK – EDINBURGH three nights Edinburgh
Day 5 We drive through Northumberland stopping at Alnwick to view the spectacular gardens and castle which was a key filming site for Harry Potter and Downton Abbey. Scotland here we come!
Days 6-7 During our time in Edinburgh we will visit famous Edinburgh Castle, which houses the Scottish crown jewels. We walk the Royal Mile past bagpipe makers, whiskey and kilt sellers to the Palace of Holyrood House, the Queen’s of official Scottish residence. There is time to take tea and scones and a tour of her majesty’s former Royal Yacht Britannia which gives an insight into the Royal family’s life at sea. Enjoy some leisure time to explore, shop or perhaps research your family tartan at the Tartan Centre. A Scottish dinner and entertainment is included.
EDINBURGH – PITLOCHRY – INVERNESS one night Inverness
Day 8 Leaving Edinburgh we cross the Forth Road Bridge and head into the Highlands stopping at the quaint town of Pitlochry en route to Inverness, the capital of the Highlands. We end the day with a visit to Culloden – where Bonnie Prince Charlie's army was defeated by the English.
INVERNESS – LOCH NESS – THE TROSSACHS one night The Trossachs
Day 9 Our journey, steeped in history, takes us along the banks of Loch Ness, keep your eyes peeled for the monster! On to Fort William in the shadow of Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain and haunting Glen Coe, where in 1692 the Campbell Soldiers slaughtered the McDonalds. We spend the night in the Trossachs – a beautiful place once inhabited by rogues – the most well-known being Rob Roy McGregor! Exquisite scenery awaits you – lush lowlands, misty peaks and the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond.
THE TROSSACHS – LAKE DISTRICT two nights Lake District
Day 10 Leaving the wild landscapes of Scotland behind we drive to the tranquil Lake District. It was here that such writers as Beatrix Potter and William Wordsworth found their inspiration and the scenery continues to fuel the creative spirits of poets and artists to this day. En-route we'll stop at Gretna Green, renowned for runaway weddings and still a popular place for weddings today.
Day 11 A leisurely day is in store to cruise on Lake Windermere. Options include cruising around the islands, visiting Ambleside or cruising to Lakeside to visit the Motor Museum and ride a Steam Train.
LAKE DISTRICT – CHESTER – STRATFORD UPON AVON three nights Stratford upon Avon
Day 12 We journey south to Chester with its unique black and white shopping arcades and Roman history. Onwards to the home of Shakespeare. A beautiful part of England and we have three nights to experience it! Along with some fascinating day trips we’ll have time to meander through picturesque villages with thatched roof cottages oozing with charm.
Day 13 At the edge of town we visit Ann Hathaway’s lovely thatched cottage. The afternoon takes us to impressive Warwick Castle – the nest medieval castle in England. Experience a thousand lifetimes as you see the richly furnished staterooms, the Armoury, Watergate Tower, jousting knights and archery displays that recapture key moments of Britain’s History. We return to Stratford upon Avon to see the birthplace of Shakespeare and enjoy time strolling around this historic riverside town.
Day 14 In their heyday the canals transported tons of supplies all over the country. When trains and modern transport took over, canal traffic c dwindled and these days they are mostly used for leisurely journeys. Today we head for Stoke Bruerne where we learn all about life on the canal and take a ride on a canal boat on the Grand Union Canal which once bustled with traffic.
STRATFORD UPON AVON – BATH two nights Bath
Day 15 Today we visit the pretty village of Bourton on Water then head for the ancient spa city of Bath where novelist Jane Austen once lived. The Great Roman Temple and bathing complex built 2,000 years ago is one of the country’s nest monuments. Learn all about this with an audio guide when we visit the Roman Baths and Pump Rooms.
Day 16 An excursion to Wales today. At St Fagan’s just outside Cardiff, we experience Welsh life through the ages as we explore an open-air museum where over forty houses and original buildings from different historical periods have been erected in the 100-acre parkland.
BATH – PORTSMOUTH – BRIGHTON one night Brighton
Day 17 En- route to the coast we visit Stonehenge, then at the historic dock we visit Lord Nelson’s flagship the ‘Victory’, and see a museum housing artefacts from Henry III’s prized battleship the Mary Rose. We hear the fascinating tales of life on board the old sailing ships before we make our way along the coast to Brighton.
BRIGHTON – LONDON four nights London
Day 18 A morning at the seaside. Brighton became very fashionable in the 19th century when the Prince Regent built an exotic Pavilion Palace to entertain his entourage. Enjoy sh and chips on the famous pier before we head for London.
Day 19 A full day of highlights in London – the Tower of London, Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey and St Paul’s, and in the afternoon see it from a different perspective as we cruise along the Thames.
Days 20-21 Two leisure days to explore all that interests you. Perhaps, Shakespeares Globe Theatre, a ride on the London Eye, a visit to Madame Tussauds or Kensington Palace. Garden lovers could enjoy a trip to Kew Gardens and history buffs can enjoy the many wonderful museums close by. There is time for last minute shopping at Harrods or a wander in Hyde Park. On any evening you may wish to attend a show at the West End.
................ Opportunity to join our Scandinavia Cruise group
LONDON – BELFAST two nights Belfast
Days 22-23 This morning we fly to Northern Ireland. On arrival we have an orientation tour of the city and visit the Titanic Exhibition to learn about the ill-fated ship through state-of-the-art displays and see the docks where this famous liner was built just over a century ago. The following morning we take an excursion along the picturesque Antrim coastline to the amazing Giants Causeway – enormous columns formed by volcanic activity over 60 million years ago. Try a little Irish Whisky at the local village before our return to Belfast for the evening.
BELFAST – GALWAY one night Galway
Day 24 We travel to Southern Ireland today and explore the lively colourful streets of Galway.
GALWAY – CORK one night Cork
Day 25 The towering Cliffs of Moher plunging into the Atlantic Ocean will be a highlight today. We spend the night in Cork, Ireland’s second largest city located on the banks of the River Lee.
CORK – DUBLIN two nights Dublin
Days 26-27 We visit Blarney Castle for a chance to climb the steps and kiss the stone or treat yourself to some Irish garments at Blarney Woollen Mill. Travelling north we see the Rock of Cashel on our way to Dublin. A relaxing end to our journey as we wander statue lined O’Connell Street, and see the elegant Georgian houses and Trinity College. You’ll be sure to get the perfect pint if you pop into the Guinness Storehouse.
DUBLIN – LONDON – SINGAPORE one night Singapore
Days 28-29 Your last chance to buy some Irish souvenirs before we say farewell to Ireland. This afternoon we transfer to Dublin Airport to connect with our fight via Heathrow to Singapore.
SINGAPORE – NEW ZEALAND
Days 30-31 We spend a night and day in Singapore before we transfer to the airport for our evening fight home. We land in New Zealand filled with fond memories of an incredible journey together and experiences that we will treasure forever.