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The cosmopolitan capital of London rolls out its red carpet with all the pomp and pageantry you're unlikely to encounter anywhere else in the world. Spend the day ambling along its grand boulevards and past iconic sights as you familiarise yourself with the city's bustling atmosphere.
HotelPark Plaza County Hall/Park Plaza Riverbank
Join a Local Specialist today to explore the city's favourite landmarks. See Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Buckingham Palace before spending the rest of the day at leisure to delve into the city's history, culture, art and architecture.
Meet your Travel Director this morning and stop to ponder the mysteries of the ancient monoliths of Stonehenge, before driving west to Bath. Cross the Severn Estuary to Cardiff, then view the Millennium Centre and the National Assembly in Cardiff Bay. Later, enjoy warm hospitality and traditional Welsh pub fare and drinks at a rousing Welcome Reception.
MealsBreakfast, Welcome Reception
This morning, we view the Principality Stadium during our orientation of Cardiff. Enjoy some leisure time in this modern capital. Perhaps visit the Victorian Gothic fantasy of Cardiff Castle at the heart of the city. We cross the Irish Sea by ferry to the 'Emerald Isle' and travel to historic Waterford, where we'll dine in our hotel tonight.
HighlightsWaterford, Pembroke, Rosslare
Dive Into Culture and watch the master craftsmen of the renowned House of Waterford Crystal. Then, kiss the Blarney Stone to acquire the 'gift of the gab', before travelling to the picturesque town of Killarney.
HighlightsBlarney, Waterford, Killarney
Today we experience the enduring beauty of Ireland's most scenic coastal drive around the Iveragh Peninsula - the emerald green hills, centuries-old stone villages and vivid blue seascapes provide an exquisite backdrop for our leisurely drive around what has become known as the Ring of Kerry. See Daniel O'Connell's Cahirsiveen, the fishing village of Waterville, the Black Valley and Moll's Gap with its panoramic views. This evening, we Connect With Locals at Molly Gallivan's 200-year-old cottage, sharing a memorable Be My Guest experience with the O'Sullivan family and their Kerry cows.
MealsBreakfast, Be My Guest
Celtic art and history take centre stage this morning as we visit the Rock of Cashel in County Tipperary, the seat of Irish kings for centuries. Perched atop a limestone outcrop in the Golden Vale, the historic ruins house one of the most remarkable collections of Celtic art and medieval architecture in Europe. We arrive this afternoon in Dublin, where we will join our Local Specialist for a sightseeing tour to see Trinity College, St. Patrick's Cathedral and the stately Georgian Squares. This evening, consider joining an Optional Experience to enjoy the rousing sounds of an Irish cabaret.
Dive Into Culture and beat the crowds and explore the Guinness Brewery for a tour of the Storehouse including a tasting technique demonstration. The rest of the day is yours to soak up the cosy atmosphere of the Irish capital. Ramble through the buzzing streets of Temple Bar or visit Grafton Street, famous for its colourful street performers.
Admire the spectacular landscape of Snowdonia National Park as you travel to the ancient city of Chester, with its characteristic Tudor Rows and medieval walls. We arrive later in Liverpool, the haunt of the 'Fab Four', joining our companions for a tasty Regional Dinner at a local restaurant.
MealsBreakfast, Regional Dinner
HighlightsLiverpool, Dublin, Holyhead
The beautiful landscape, which for centuries inspired the Romantic poets, provides a mesmerising backdrop for our scenic drive from the lush green hills of Lancashire to the Lake District. Skirt the shores of England's largest lake, Windermere, as we travel through countryside made famous by poet William Wordsworth. We cross the Scottish border and visit the runaway wedding capital that is Gretna Green. This evening, we arrive in beguiling Edinburgh, where we'll spend the next two nights.
Join a Local Specialist this morning for a memorable sightseeing tour of this captivating capital, including a visit to Edinburgh Castle, perched high above the city on Castle Rock. See 'Auld Reekie's' Royal Mile and the elegant Palace of Holyroodhouse in the shadow of Arthur's Seat, and admire the Georgian façades in Edinburgh's New Town. Tickets to see the spectacular Edinburgh Tattoo are included on departures that coincide with performance dates.
We journey south to the medieval market town of Alnwick with its impressive castle and Tenantry Column, upon which the Percy Lion sits imposingly overlooking the town's beautiful gardens. Marvel at the magnificent scenery as you cross Northumberland and the River Tyne at Newcastle en route to York where you'll walk through the charming Shambles, see the medieval walls and York Minster, one of the greatest cathedrals in the world.
We visit Shakespeare's Birthplace and Visitor Centre in Stratford-upon-Avon to see where the 'Avon Bard' was born and raised. View Anne Hathaway's thatched cottage, then enjoy some free time to explore. This evening we join our fellow travellers and Travel Director for a Farewell Dinner.
MealsBreakfast, Farewell Dinner
HighlightsStratford Upon Avon
Journey to the Cotswolds this morning and the little churchyard at Bladon where Sir Winston Churchill is buried. Arriving in Oxford, the oldest university city in the British Isles, we'll enjoy an orientation tour of the city to view the Radcliffe Camera and the Bodleian Library and visit one of the university's famous colleges (when open). We return to London this afternoon.
HotelPark Plaza County Hall/Park Plaza Riverbank
For now, it's time to say farewell to our travel companions at the end of a memorable holiday as we prepare to return home with treasured memories.
- 14 breakfasts
- 5 dinners (including Be My Guest)
- Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing
- Daily breakfast and up to half your evening meals
- Luxury air-conditioned coach with Wi-Fi in most countries or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)
- The services of a Brendan Vacations Local Host at your London hotel
- The services of a Brendan Vacations Local Host if you stay at Brendan Vacations's recommended London hotel
- Return ferry across the Irish Sea between Wales and Ireland
- Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted
- Optional Experiences and free time
- All porterage and restaurant gratuities
- Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras
- An expert Travel Director and professional Driver
- All hotel tips, charges and local taxes
- London airport transfer service is available to purchase. Conditions apply. See airport transfer page for details.
- Handcrafted Highlights
- Explore Dublin and Edinburgh with a Local Specialist
- Discover Bath, Cardiff, Chester, York and Oxford
- See St. Patrick's Cathedral, the Georgian Squares in Dublin and the Lake District's magnificent scenery
- View the Principality Stadium in Cardiff, the home to Harry Potter amp; Hogwarts' Alnwick Castle, York Minster, Anne Hathaway's thatched cottage and Sir Winston Churchill's grave at Bladon
- Visit the ancient stone circle at Stonehenge, the Roman Baths in Bath, the Waterford Crystal Showroom, Blarney Castle to kiss the stone, the Rock of Cashel, Gretna Green, Edinburgh Castle, Alnwick, Shakespeare's Birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon and one of the famous colleges of Oxford (when open)
- Scenic Drive of the Ring of Kerry
- Explore London, Dublin and Edinburgh with a Local Specialist
- Connect with Locals Tales of potent poitin and rural Ireland are shared over a delicious Be My Guest dinner of Irish Stew at Molly Gallivan's 200-year old cottage with the O'Sullivan family and their Kerry cows. (Day 6)
- Dive into Culture Learn how delicate Irish crystal is crafted at the House of Waterford Crystal on a workshop tour. (Day 5) Visit the Guinness Storehouse to see how the world’s most famous stout is created then enjoy the distinctive taste of a perfectly chilled pint of Guinness. (Day 8)
Brendan Vacations's Airport Transfers 2021-22
Park Plaza County Hall/Park Plaza Riverbank
*Price is per person, land only and based on double occupancy. Subject to availability; varies by inclusions and travel dates. CST#2084503-20