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  • Improve your photographic skills in workshops and the field with Jan Chipps, professional photographer.
  • Explore the UNESCO World Heritage-designated Jurassic Coast and two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the coastline of the Penwith Peninsula and Dartmoor National Park.
  • Enjoy traditions of the South West including Morris Dancing, a Cornish cream tea and three dinners in spectacular locations.

This trip has been discontinued. Instead see

Trails of New England

England, Scotland & Wales 2017

New England in the Fall


Creating memorable digital photographs of natural and manmade landscapes is a true test of a photographer’s skill. Join noted photographer Jan Chipps amid the varied landscapes of Somerset and Cornwall to learn how to use your digital camera to make enduring, personal images. The tiny hamlets and picturesque villages, soaring cliffs and rugged coastlines, towering castles and ancient churches of Somerset and Cornwall provide your dramatic inspiration. For photographers of all levels, there is much to be learned to enhance your final images. Workshops on landscape photography help you make the most of two beautiful but contrasting areas of England’s idyllic South West.

Travel Theme
  • N/A
  • N/A
Cities & Attractions
Flights & Transport
  • Only ground transport

Road Scholar Travel Reviews & Ratings
93% Recommend

4.7 out of 5
Excellent 23 Great 3 Average 1 Disappointing 1 Terrible 0
4.7 Guide
4.7 Activities
4.8 Lodging
4.5 Transportation
4.6 Meals
Digital Photography in the South West: Somerset and Cornwall

No reviews yet for this trip. Browse other reviews below for Road Scholar .


Does Not Recommend


  • 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
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Operator Road Scholar


Does Not Recommend

Don't go! March 2017

  • 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



Excellent coverage of major cities and Guizhou Province January 2017

  • 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.
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Operator Road Scholar



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

  • 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.
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Operator Road Scholar



Old Cuba is fantastic and should be seen before it's spoiled by capitalism. January 2017

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 4.0
  • Lodging 4.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 3.0
This was my wife's and my first trip with Road Scholar. At the time (April, 2012), it was not possible for Americans to directly visit Cuba. You had to do it with a cultural/educational group, often associated with a university. Or, you could fly to Canada, Mexico, or Europe first and then get a flight to Cuba from there (while risking a ~$10,000 fine from the US Government). We opted for the legal route with Road Scholar.

It was a fantastic trip! We had a small-ish group of about 20 people and a wonderful guide, José Luis (who, like most Cubans, had never been off the island).
The trip began in Miami where we had an orientation and spent the night. Then we flew to Havana and stayed in the Hotel Nacional for four nights. It doesn't get more historic -- or fun -- than the Nacional:

While in Havana, we enjoyed great history/culture lectures from experts, toured various parts of Havana (including Hemmingway's home in the hills nearby), and, on our own, had the opportunity to have dinner at a paladar -- a restaurant inside someone's home.

The Cuban people are friendly but the infrastructure of their country is in shambles. It's been a long time since Russia's deep pockets left the island (1991), and you see poverty everywhere. But not the begging-in-the-street kind. Cuba provides universal health care, education (including room and board all the way through grad/med school!), food staples, and a very modest income (~$30/month) to everyone. Most people add to that income by working on the side.

After Havana, we traveled to Cienfuegos. From there we saw the infamous Bay Of Pigs, but also the wonderful Benny Moré Art School where we learned of the fantastic support for the arts by the Cuban government. Children are identified in grade school as having artistic talent and then funneled into magnet schools like Benny Moré to study art for their entire scholastic career!

Don't go to Cuba for the food. It's edible (and won't make you sick) but rather boring. You mainly get the "three amigos": fish, pork, or chicken, along with rice and/or black beans. But the aged rum is superb and so are the cigars!

Probably my favorite thing on the island, though, was the music -- whether on the street or in a more formal setting:

Cuba is fantastic. Go enjoy it!
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Operator Road Scholar


Day One:

Depart From: Depart the US on an overnight flight.

Day Two: Arrival day.    

Meals: Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Dillington House

Arrive To: London Heathrow.

Lunch: A light lunch is served in the Radisson Blu Heathrow hotel.

Afternoon: 1:30pm the coach departs for Ilminster in Somerset. Enjoy your first views of historic Dillington House-formerly the Somerset home of George III's Prime Minister, Lord North, in stunning countryside. Simon Jenkins, architectural historian, has named it as one of the 1000 best houses in Britain. Welcome meeting at Dillington House with Jan Chipps and your group leader at 5:30pm.

Dinner: In Dillington House.

Evening: At leisure.

Day Three: Photographic techniques workshop. Medieval villag...         

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Dillington House

Breakfast: Full English breakfast served in the dining room of Dillington House

Morning: Morning interactive workshop in one of Dillington's state of the art, award winning meeting rooms. Landscape Photography Techniques and Camera Workshop. "Controlling the light" Core techniques for successful landscape photography : Exposure / Shutter speeds / Focus / Lenses / File types / H.D.R. High Dynamic Range / Filters. Maximise your camera knowledge and take it to the next level.

Lunch: Three course buffet lunch in Dillington House, featuring mostly local seasonal produce.

Afternoon: In the field practice shooting interiors: The importance of shutter speed and angle of view. Field trip for these local photo opportunities in the ancient and picturesque village of Lopen, pre-dating the 11th century Domesday Book. Visit the 12th century thatched church with an introduction from a local guide. Continue to Stoke sub-hamden Medieval Priory and neighbouring medieval villages en route to Ham Hill for stunning views of the Somerset "Levels", a sparsely populated coastal plain and wetland area of central Somerset, South West England, running south from the Mendip Hills to the Blackdown Hills.

Dinner: Table service dinner in Dillington House

Evening: Welcome the traditional Crewkerne "Morris Men" folk dancers.

Day Four: UNESCO World Heritage Site Jurassic Coast and sea...              

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Dillington House

Breakfast: Full English breakfast served in the dining room of Dillington House

Morning: Today we review photographs. Today's exercise- Coastal Landscape and Seascapes: Composition and capturing movement in the landscape. Depart Dillington to the village of Crewkerne en route to the Jurassic coast and the towns of Charmouth and Lyme Regis. The Dorset and East Devon Coast World Heritage Site is England's first natural World Heritage Site - known as The Jurassic Coast. It covers 95 miles of truly stunning coastline from East Devon to Dorset, with rocks recording 185 million years of the Earth's history. It clearly depicts a geological ‘walk through time’ spanning the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. At the Heritage Coast Centre at Charmouth see amazing fossil collections and find out how to discover your own fossils on the beach.

Lunch: Packed lunch taken en route.

Afternoon: Lyme Regis boasts breathtaking scenery and a special mystique, making it a unique seaside resort. Its historic Cobb and harbour are iconic features, set against moody blue cliffs yielding fossilised evidence of life on earth millions of years ago. The Cobb and harbour are famously depicted in the film version of John Fowles' The French Lieutenant's Woman and Jane Austen's Persuasion. An ancient town featured in the Domesday Book, Lyme Regis is home to a number of historical landmarks and educational attractions. From the watermill, which dates all the way back to the 14th century, to the beautiful St Michael’s Church and the fascinating Lepers Well, the picturesque and tranquil Lyme Regis is the backdrop for a fascinating field trip.

Dinner: Taken in the Harbour Inn, Lyme Regis, situated on the beach front, overlooking the Cobb and Lyme Bay. Evening photographic opportunities of the harbour and Cobb to contrast with your day's work.

Evening: Return to Dillington.

Day Five: Dartmoor National Park.          

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Queens Hotel

Breakfast: Full English breakfast in Dillngton.

Morning: Transfer to Cornwall crossing Southern England's greatest expanse of wilderness, the Dartmoor National Park-an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, with its’ echoes of stone- age man in hut circles and scattered settlements. Use your len's choice creatively for emphasis and drama, capture the atmosphere of this magical place.

Lunch: Taken in The Rugglestone Inn- a unique, unspoilt Dartmoor inn delightfully located in the picturesque village of Widecombe in the Moor. Originally a cottage the grade II listed building was converted to an inn back in 1832 and named after a local logan stone. It is surrounded by peaceful moorland, adjacent to a pretty stream and just a few minutes walk from the centre of the village Widemombe-in-the-Moor.

Afternoon: The transfer continues. Arrival and check in at the hotel in Penzance.

Dinner: In the hotel.

Evening: After dinner guest talk "An Introduction to Celtic Cornwall".

Day Six: Artistic St Ives, tin-mining Penwith heritage coa...        

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Accommodation: Queens Hotel

Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: Today focus is on shooting vistas and panoramas. Depart for the town of St. Ives, set on its own bay, long popular with artists for the astounding quality of its light. St Ives provides inspiration in its galleries and craft shops and is an international arts centre. Explore the cobbled streets, full of history, legend and tradition winding between pretty fisherman's cottages or the golden beaches and recognise beauty in all its simplicity. Here we have free time to explore and perhaps visit the Tate Gallery, the Cornish arm of this world famous London Gallery.

Lunch: Excluded so that you can discover and make the most of the special qualities of St Ives.

Afternoon: Continue to the 18th and 19th century tin-mining landscape around the Penwith Heritage coast and marvel at the impossible location of the mines which extended out, deep under the sea.

Dinner: Taken out in the award winning restaurant, The Beach overlooking the beach at Sennen Cove. This west facing restaurant with its exceptional architectural design boasts a large terrace on which you can photograph and enjoy stunning sunsets over this rugged and unspoilt bay.

Evening: Looking west we hope to capture a beautiful sunset. Perfect your sunset shots.

Day Seven: Penwith Peninsula and fishing villages. Megalithi...              

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Queens Hotel

Penwith Peninsula and fishing villages. Megalithic tombs. Performance at the World famous Minack Theatre.

Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: Review of photographs. Exercise: Looking for subjects and details that characterise "place". Close ups/details/patterns/High Dynamic Range (H.D.R.) Depart for the Penwith peninsula and fishing villages of Newlyn and Mousehole with its narrow winding streets and pretty harbour. Mousehole (pronounced Mowzel) is a stunningly attractive hamlet of lichened stonework cottages and houses huddled around the edges of the harbour. Dylan Thomas described it as the "prettiest village in England" (1930) and has changed little over the years.

Lunch: Taken out in Mousehole.

Afternoon: Continue on to the standing stone circle and Megalithic tomb of the peninsula to Porthcurno, a designated costal Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Porthcurno Beach is located some three miles east-southeast of Land`s End, as the crow flies. A beautiful southeast facing beach in the western corner of lovely Porthcurno Bay; bordered by the Minack Theatre to the west; and Green Bay, Pednvounder Beach and the famous Logan Rock to the east.

Dinner: Taken in the 400 year old Logan Rock Inn. Situated in the small picturesque village of Treen, the inn is named after the remarkable Logan Rock which stands on the cliffs within a short walk of the village. This huge granite boulder was famous for its ability to rock back and forth without falling, balanced as it was by nature on the surrounding rocks, a touch from a hand could set it rocking

Evening: Enjoy a performance at the world famous Minack Theatre, dramatically carved out of the cliffs overlooking the sea. (Wrap up warm it is open air!).

Day Eight: King Arthur's Kingdom, Tintagel Castle and smuggl...               

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Queens Hotel

Note: Tintagel Castle-Wheelchair access is quite limited due to the geography of the site. Wheelchair access is available to viewing points and the visitors centre. Surfaces in the castle include grass, gravel, cobbles and flagstones. Many of the surfaces are uneven and include changes of level. No elevator.

Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: Depart for a full day's field trip to King Arthur's Kingdom’ in North Cornwall with a visit to the ruins of Tintagel Castle, home of the legendary Arthur and still shrouded in mystery and legend. Photograph the setting of the dramatic headland overlooking the sea. Exercise: Find unusual and striking angles to tell the "story" and "legend" of this mysterious place and its impossible setting. Use of focal point and sense of scale. This is a magical day out in Cornwall, with Tintagel Castle's wonderful location, set high on the rugged North Cornwall coast, dramatic views, and fascinating ruins. Tintagel Castle is steeped in legend and mystery; said to be the birthplace of King Arthur, you can still visit the nearby Merlin's Cave. The castle also features in the tale of Tristan and Isolde. Capture a history stretching as far back as the Romans.

Lunch: Packed lunch.

Afternoon: Continue to the Smugglers village of Boscastle where we have a famous Cornish cream tea before returning to Penzance. Boscastle nestles in a scenic rocky inlet on the dramatic north coast of Cornwall. Boscastle is a conservation area set amongst some of the most beautiful countryside within the British Isles, and is one of the few remaining unspoilt harbour villages in Cornwall. Photograph the Area of Outstanding Beauty, which the National Trust own and care for. Practice your shots of the beautiful medieval harbour and surrounding coastline.

Dinner: In the hotel.

Evening: Venture out to a local pub to hear some music (optional).

Day Nine: Penzance and St Michael's Mount.   

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Queens Hotel

Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: Free morning to explore the town and harbour of Penzance. The ancient market town of Penzance is the Capital of the far west of Cornwall and is set in beautiful Mounts Bay - a body of water dominated by the grandeur of St. Michael's Mount. Located just 10 miles from Land's End, an area of Celtic culture and outstanding natural beauty surrounds the town. Named "Pen Sans" in the ancient Cornish language, meaning "Holy Headland", referring to the headland to the western side of the harbour on which a chapel was established by early Christians well over 1000 years ago, the town received Royal Charters for its harbour in 1512, for markets and fairs in 1592 and was formally incorporated by Royal Charter in 1614. This market town is home to several Georgian and Regency historic houses and eleven museums. Notable amongst these is the Penlee House Gallery & Museum in the centre of Penzance which has extensive displays of local archaeological artifacts and a range of exhibits illustrating the life and social history of West Cornwall. In the gallery are examples of the work of the Newlyn School of Painting as represented by Stanhope Forbes, Walter Langley, Elizabeth Armstrong, Edwin Harris and Norman Garstin. Later works of the 20th century include paintings by Lamorna Birch, Charles Simpson, Harold Harvey and Dod and Ernest Procter. In its strictest sense, the term 'Newlyn School' describes the group of artists, based in this small Cornish fishing village in the late 19th century, who had a united ethos, similar painting style and shared subjects. They were primarily concerned with capturing the real lives of the fishing and farming communities in this remote part of Britain. Late morning will be a final review of photographs with Jan Chipps - an opportunity to look back at the scenes and moments you have captured during your time in the South West.

Lunch: In the hotel.

Afternoon: Depart for St Michael's Mount, the medieval castle situated on a tidal island with over a thousand years of history, the Cornish counterpart of Mont St. Michel in France. Today's exercises: Shooting for reflection, creative exposure and use of filters. Explore the amazing island world of St Michael’s Mount and discover legend, myth and over a thousand years of incredible history. Stroll across the causeway where a legendary giant once walked. Follow the footsteps of pilgrims. Boat hop to an island where modern life meets layers of history. Discover a medieval castle, a sub-tropical paradise and a close-knit island community. Delve into the history of a fortress, a priory, a harbour and a home.

Dinner: In the hotel.

Evening: At leisure.

Day Ten: Transfer to London.    

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Radisson Blu Heathrow Hotel.

Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel.

Morning: Transfer by coach to London Heathrow Radisson Blu (previously Radisson Edwardian).

Lunch: Packed lunch.

Afternoon: The transfer continues.

Dinner: In the hotel.

Evening: At leisure.

Day Eleven: Departure day.       

Meals: Breakfast

Breakfast: Full English breakfast in the hotel (served from 7-10am.) Transfer by Hoppa bus--the group leader will give you the GBP6 for the bus which will take you to all Heathrow terminals.

Dates & Pricing

Price From


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.
Trip Includes
  • 9 nights of accommodations
  • 26 meals: 9 breakfasts, 8 lunches, 9 dinners
  • 4 Expert-led lectures
  • 11 Field trips
  • 3 Hands-on experiences
  • 2 Performances
  • 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
  • International Flights
  • Passport charges
  • Any kind of insurance
  • Personal Expenses
Meals Included:

9 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches and 9 Dinners

Flights & Transport
Only ground transport
Group Size:
Standard Group
Maximum Number of People in Group: 24
Limited to 24 participants

Dillington House

3 nights


A stately home now a residential conference centre for professional development, adult education and the arts founded in 1949. The Main House, set in beautiful parkland and gardens, dates back from the 16th Century. Formerly the Somerset home of George III's Prime Minister, Lord North, the countryside setting is glorious and the award winning Hyde Buidling with views over the Somerset Levels mixes contemporary with historic. In the early nineteenth century, the Main House was remodelled in the so-called Jacobethan style. The Mews building was constructed in 1875, while 2009 saw the opening of The Hyde - a spectacular example of contemporary architecture, overlooking the surrounding countryside. Dillington House has been awarded Five Stars by VisitBritain.

Queens Hotel

5 nights

Penzance, Cornwall

The Queens Hotel has been welcoming visitors to the far west of Cornwall since 1862

Radisson Blu Heathrow Hotel.

1 night

 Hayes, Middlesex.

Close to Heathrow Airport.

Start City
End City

Trip ID#: DigPhoRoa


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