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Highlights
  • Explore Henry VIII’s favorite palace, Hampton Court, and see Christopher Wren’s magnificent state apartments and gardens.
  • Gain an understanding of Irish shipbuilding heritage, political transformations, and achievements in literature and the arts at Dublin’s venerable Trinity College.
  • Experience the evocative cultural and historical landscapes of Scotland and Wales in Edinburgh’s Old Town and Caernarfon Castle where Princes of Wales are crowned.

This trip has been discontinued. Instead see

 

Best of England in 14 Days Tour

The British Isles by Sea: Ireland, Scotland and England

Barging Ireland

 



From Romans and Vikings to seaports and seascapes, castles and kings — immerse yourself in the vibrant sagas, dramatic history, and colorful contemporary life of England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales on this exceptional shipboard voyage.

Travel Theme
Flights & Transport
  • Only ground transport

29
Road Scholar Travel Reviews & Ratings
90% Recommend

4.6 out of 5
Excellent 23 Great 3 Average 1 Disappointing 1 Terrible 1
Value
4.6 Guide
4.7 Activities
4.6 Lodging
4.4 Transportation
4.5 Meals
4.4
British Isles Medley

WE

Recommends

A peaceful and green country with lots of history revealed by motor coach travel. January 2017

4.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 4.0
  • Activities 4.0
  • Lodging 3.0
  • Transportation 3.0
  • Meals 3.0
The trip was a good overview of the country. The Road Scholar guide was very knowledgeable. The motorcoach was very comfortable. The accommodations and meals were fine. Couldn't ask for a better overview of the place.
Read more

Operator Road Scholar

S

Does Not Recommend

They take advantage of the elderly May 2018

1.0
  • Value 1.0
  • Guide 4.0
  • Activities 1.0
  • Lodging 1.0
  • Transportation 1.0
  • Meals 1.0
I had high hopes for Road scholar. However, when I was diagnosed with cancer I got no sympathy from Road Scholar. The agents and management kept saying you should have purchased insurance. But the insurance was extremely expensive and would not have covered the cancellation fee either. I ended up attending anyways because I didn't want to lose my money. I felt sick the entire time and could barely complete the activities. The group leader was wonderful. But the program was very strict and I felt that they over charged for everything. They demonstrated shocking behavior for a non profit that is supposed to be all about education and supporting the elderly. Yet they constantly are sending catalogs and pushing expensive programs. I highly recommend taking your money elsewhere. They do not respect their customers and only care about money. They took advantage of a cancer patient and according to the others on my trip this is common.
Read more

Operator Road Scholar

S

Does Not Recommend

A BIG DISAPPOINTMENT August 2017

3.0
  • Value 3.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 3.0
  • Lodging 4.0
  • Transportation 2.0
  • Meals 3.0
I would have enjoyed this trip much more if I felt I was being treated as an adult, the educated, enthusiastic traveler that I am.
Unfortunately, I took a fall and broke my arm near the end of the trip. I was shocked at the very insolent, uncaring attitude of Road Scholar. I received two calls from the insurance program my husband was encouraged to pay for for the trip (we usually use Travel Guard who is great). Both calls were very negative. Neither expressed concern about my condition and both apparently had called to state that ROAD SCHOLAR
WOULD NOT PAY FOR ANYTHING! WOW! A WAKEUP CALL FROM HELL. I WILL BE SHOUTING THIS FROM THE ROOFTOPS SO NO ONE ELSE
HAS THIS EXPERIENCE. DO NOT PURCHASE ROAD SCHOLAR INSURANCE -- IT IS A BOONDOGGLE!
Read more

Operator Road Scholar

LG

Does Not Recommend

Don't go! March 2017

2.0
  • Guide 1.0
  • Activities 4.0
  • Lodging 1.0
  • Meals 1.0
  • Value 2.0
  • Transportation 2.0
I took a four day bridge class at Jekyll Island Club Hotel. The class was mediocre. And I came home with over 50 BED BUG BITES! Please beware.

Operator Road Scholar

TCtssvawmc

Recommends

Excellent coverage of major cities and Guizhou Province January 2017

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Road Scholar (also known as Elderhostel) offers hundreds of tours worldwide, using local tour companies, sometimes universities. I have taken RS tours to Africa, China, and France and look forward to more. This was my first "tour" of China, but my 20th visit, with the rest on business. Our guide, Mei Mei, was one of the finest I've seen on tours. We started with Beijing and continued to Xian and then to Guizhou Province for a week in this fascinating area, which was new to me. We were able to meet the people in the villages, thanks to our guide, and enjoyed the chance to see and photograph such a variety of places in China. Hotels were excellent and appropriate to this type of tour (usually centrally located and very fine). Meals were family style and always good. Road Scholar makes its tours educational and doesn't push shopping as so many commercial ones do. Touring in China is very safe. You do have a lot of walking and RS tells you this in the tour, but it seems that a great deal of the walking is in those huge airports! I recommend Road Scholar and always turn to their catalogs to choose my next trip.
Read more

Operator Road Scholar

Itinerary

Day One: Overnight Flight from USA

In Transit: Overnight flight from USA.

Day Two: Arrivals London

Meals: Dinner

Accommodation: Club Quarters Trafalgar Square Hotel

Morning: Arrivals and airport transfers.

Lunch: On own.

Afternoon: Welcome orientation at 4:00 pm at the Club Quarters Trafalgar Square Hotel.

Dinner: Welcome dinner at the hotel.

Day Three: London/transfer to Southampton/Embarkation

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Note: Most evenings aboard the ship there will be a brief post dinner briefing about the following day's schedule. Each night aboard the ship you will be free to enjoy one of the many activities including: live performances, movies, live music, ship library and spa.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: Field trip to Hampton Court Palace built for Cardinal Wolsey but handed over to Henry VIII who extended it as did William and Mary through Sir Christopher Wren. Tudor turrets and the Great Hall sit alongside Wren's Classical State Apartments surrounded by Wren's formal baroque landscape.

Lunch: In a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Transfer to Southampton for embarkation.

Dinner: Enjoy a wide array of culinary choices during tonight's Welcome Dinner aboard the ship.

Day Four: Cruising the North Sea

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: Enjoy a morning at leisure to explore the ship and its many amenities. Visit the library, listen to music in a lounge or relax on a sun deck.

Lunch: Aboard the ship.

Afternoon: Afternoon lecture from your Group Leader about the upcoming ports of call in England and Scotland. This is followed by an exclusive Road Scholar cocktail party.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Day Five: Newcastle, United Kingdom  

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: A delightful blend of ancient and modern, Newcastle is one of the liveliest cities in northern England. Originally built in the 11th century, the Castle Keep was the “new castle” for which the city is named. Stroll along the River Tyne and marvel at the different bridges that have transformed the face of the city. Learn about the history of Newcastle at the Great North Museum.

Lunch: Sample English regional cuisine in a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Free afternoon to explore Newcastle on your own. Your group leader will provide you with some possible sites to explore.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Day Six: Edinburgh (South Queensferry), United Kingdom          

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Note: Please note that this port uses tenders. Staff will be available for assistance to get on and off the tender.

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: Take a panoramic city exploration of Edinburgh including: Old Town area (the Royal Mile, Greyfriar’s Bobby and Grassmarket); New Town area (Princes Street, Charlotte Square, St. Andrew’s Square and Heriott Row); Holyrood Palace and Edinburgh Castle.

Lunch: Sample Scottish regional cuisine in a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Your group exploration of Edinburgh continues in the afternoon. Enjoy seeing marvelous Georgian and Victorian architecture and impressive Edinburgh Castle, high on its volcanic crag with a fabulous view.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Day Seven: Cruising the North Sea.        

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: Enjoy a morning at leisure to explore the ship and its many amenities. Visit the library, listen to music in a lounge or relax on a sun deck.

Lunch: Lunch aboard the ship.

Afternoon: Afternoon lecture from your Group Leader about the upcoming ports of call in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Learn about how history has shaped the contemporary relations between these two countries and cultures.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Day Eight: Belfast

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: This morning, we transfer to the city center. En route, learn about the rich legacy of the Harland and Wolff shipbuilders where the "Titanic" was built. You will stop at Belfast's Jurys Inn for an illustrated lecture on "The Mural Tradition and Political Transformation in Northern Ireland". This will serve as an introduction to Belfast and a basis for understanding the expertly guided field trip of Belfast City later in the morning. Depart by Belfast's taxi cabs to the colorful and evocative murals of East and West Belfast. It has been said that a city can be defined by its taxi drivers and nowhere is this more true than in Belfast.

Lunch: During lunch, meet with a member of the Sinn Fein political party and former Lord Mayor of Belfast Tom Hartley. During this Q&A session, learn about life as a politician during The Troubles.

Afternoon: Free time to explore Belfast. Your group leader will provide you with some possible sites to explore.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Evening: The ship will remain in Belfast until the late evening. Enjoy the late summer sun of the British Isles with a stroll in the city or a relaxing view from the ship.

Day Nine: Glasgow

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: Offering some of the finest Victorian architecture in the UK, Glasgow is a major center of commerce and culture. Glasgow Cathedral is one of the only cathedrals in Scotland to have survived the Reformation in tact and houses a celebrated collection of stained glass windows.

Lunch: Sample some regional cuisine and Scotland's famous single malt whiskeys during lunch on your own. Or return to the ship for lunch.

Afternoon: Free time to explore Glasgow. Your group leader will provide you with some possible sites to explore.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Day Ten: Liverpool

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: A wealthy port city since the 19th century, Liverpool is noted for its rich architectural heritage, diverse communities and innovative infrastructure, as well as being the birthplace of The Beatles. Learn about the history of the city as one of the world’s greatest seaports at The Merseyside Maritime Museum.

Lunch: Aboard the ship.

Afternoon: Free time to explore Liverpool. Your group leader will provide you with some possible sites to explore.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Day Eleven: Dublin, Ireland

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: Disembark for a guided field trip of the city of Dublin, which includes a visit to St. Patrick's Cathedral.

Lunch: Enjoy lunch in a real Irish Pub. You will be joined by a duo of young Dublin traditional musicians who will share their knowledge of Irish music with you and play a few jigs, reels & airs!

Afternoon: Visit Historic Trinity College in the company of current undergraduates - Trinity College builds on its four-hundred-year-old tradition of scholarship to confirm its position as one of the great universities of the world. It has been the educator of many of Ireland's great writers from Swift to Wilde. Part of the tour will include the Trinity College Library which houses 200,000 antique texts, marble busts of scholars and the oldest surviving harp in Ireland as well as the Book of Kells. This illuminated manuscript of the Gospels was created by Irish monks around the year 800.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Evening: The ship will remain in Dublin until the late evening. Enjoy the late summer sun with a stroll in the city or a relaxing view from the ship.

Day Twelve: Holyhead, United Kingdom

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: One of the busier ports on the Irish Sea, Holyhead has long been a hub for transit between Great Britain and Ireland. Enjoy the beautiful Welsh countryside with its charming towns and farms and visit the imposing Caernarfon Castle begun by Edward I in 1283. This mighty fortress was a residence and seat of government as well as a military stronghold. The current Prince of Wales received his title here in 1969.

Lunch: Aboard the ship.

Afternoon: Free time to explore Holyhead. Your group leader will provide you with some possible sites to explore.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Day Thirteen: Waterford, Ireland

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Note: Please note that this port uses tenders. Staff will be available for assistance to get on and off the tender.

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: Take a guided walk through this 1,100-year-old Viking town and admire Rodney's Tower, still in use, and see the exquisite treasures in the museum. Visit the Waterford Crystal Centre, where you can see how the artisans cut their famous designs.

Lunch: Aboard the ship.

Afternoon: Free time to explore Waterford. Your group leader will provide you with some possible sites to explore.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Day Fourteen: Portland, United Kingdom

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Oceania Marina

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: After disembarktion, we leave Portland and head to the village of Wool. We proceed to the town of Dorchester, a Roman town, where we will visit The Dorset County Museum, which offers more of the Thomas Hardy connections, Roman connections and Jurassic Coast information.

Lunch: In a local restaurant.

Afternoon: After lunch we head west along the Jurassic Coast to Lyme Regis with its wonderful harbour, Jurassic Coast and literary connections. We will walk along the seaside to the Cobb which Jane Austin used in her novel "Persuasion," where we will admire the wonderful view. We return to Portland along the Jurassic Coast, via Abbotsbury, with its thatched cottages, and back on the Isle of Portland. Drive around Portland looking into quarries where the famous Portland Stone has been quarried for 2,000 years. Visit Portland Bill and its lighthouse for views of the infamous Prisons on the Island.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Evening: A brief recap of the program will follow dinner. Prepare for your journey home tomorrow.

Day Fifteen: Southampton/London/Departures

Meals: Breakfast

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: The ship arrives in Southampton at 6:00AM and disembarkation will begin later this morning. Disembark/transfer to the airport for flights to the US.

Dates & Pricing

Price From

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Price Per Day:

NA per person
 
Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.
Details
Trip Includes
  • 13 nights of accommodations
  • 37 meals: 13 breakfasts, 11 lunches, 13 dinners
  • 3 Expert-led lectures
  • 13 Field trips
  • Free round-trip airfare from many US cities
  • Learning led by expert instructors who are authorities in the field of study.
  • An experienced Group Leader attuned to the needs of Road Scholar participants.
  • Customary gratuities throughout the program that you would normally pay yourself.
  • The Road Scholar Travel Assistance Plan, which is purchased on behalf of every participant and provides 24-hour-a-day emergency assistance services coverage.
  • Taxes
  • State-of-the-art QUIETVOX listening devices
Trip Excludes
  • Passport and visa charges
  • Any kind of insurance
  • Personal Expenses
Flights & Transport
Only ground transport
Group Size:
Standard Group
Start City
London
End City
Southampton

Trip ID#: BriIslRoa

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