Duration: 23 Days
From the lively cities to the breathtaking scenery, you’ll discover the best of England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, and Northern Ireland on this in-depth Britain and Ireland tour. Britain and Ireland are known for their breathtaking scenery, and this tour will not disappoint. You’ll see the 100-mile Ring of Kerry, with its rugged and magnificent landscapes; stunning scenery on Ireland’s Dingle Peninsula; the spectacular 668-foot Cliffs of Moher; Northern Ireland’s awe-inspiring Giant’s Causeway, formed millions of years ago; and Brecon Beacons National Park, with its dramatic landscapes. Enjoy time in the Scottish Highlands, filled with dramatic landscapes, rolling farmland, picturesque seaside towns, and beautiful lochs (lakes).
Britain and Ireland are also known for their picturesque and historic towns and cities. On this Britain and Ireland tour, you’ll visit many of these towns, including Oxford, home to some of England’s most famous colleges; Stratford-upon-Avon, where you’ll get a glimpse into life in 16th-century England in Shakespeare’s hometown; York, England’s most complete medieval city with its cobbled streets and the magnificent York Minster, England’s largest Gothic cathedral; Berwick-upon-Tweed, a peaceful coastal town with a turbulent past; Strathpeffer, known in its Victorian heyday as a spa resort; Looe, a pretty fishing village; the seaside town of Tramore; Bath, known for the excavations of Roman baths used for bathing and socialising 2,000 years ago; and many more. You’ll also visit the capitals—London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Dublin, and Belfast. These are just some of the many highlights of this tour through the British Isles. For value-minded holidayers, this is the perfect way to see England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, and Northern Ireland!
Adventure is knocking with everything you need for perfectly affordable touring. Cosmos includes hand-selected accommodations, guided sightseeing, and seamless transportation between destinations—with value-minded travel lovers in mind. Explore with expert Cosmos Tour Directors and Local Guides, complimentary headsets, private, first-class, air-conditioned motorcoach with free Wi-Fi, a return Irish Sea ferry crossing, and a boat across the Shannon estuary. Enhance your free time to explore like a local with your CosmosGO mobile app!
Departures August 03 & 17 include the Edinburgh Military Tattoo.
Please note: Itinerary is based on 2024, and is subject to change. Full details will be confirmed in 2024.
Check into your hotel. In the afternoon, there's time to rest or to start exploring the lively British capital; uniformed hosts are available to help you make the most of your stay.
What's your pleasure? Today is devoted to exploring on your own or enjoying our exciting program of optional activities. You may choose to join a Local Guide for an optional morning sightseeing tour of the city's famous landmarks: the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Whitehall's mounted horseguards and the Prime Minister's Downing Street residence, Piccadilly Circus, and Buckingham Palace. The highlight is a visit to St. Paul's Cathedral, Sir Christopher Wren's masterpiece built between 1675 and 1708. Later, maybe visit Windsor Castle or the Tower of London with its spectacular Crown Jewels. Tonight, we recommend our optional Taste of London excursion with dinner, followed by a guided illumination cruise on the River Thames. (B)
Meet your Tour Director and travelling companions and depart at 8 am for a memorable day of sightseeing, including a walking tour of Oxford, one of the country's oldest seats of learning; then, skirt the Cotswold Hills to Shakespeare's Stratford-upon-Avon. Take photos of Anne Hathaway's Cottage and explore the town at your own pace. Overnight in Leeds. (B,D) Today's Distance: 249 mi/ 400 km
This morning, head north to York, England's most complete medieval city. Stand in awe in front of the great structure of York Minster, then follow your Tour Director through a maze of quaint streets, including the narrow Shambles. Stop for the night in Newcastle, once an important hub for the wool trade and coal mining and now a vibrant, modern city. (B) Today's Distance: 108 mi/ 174 km
See a section of Hadrian's Wall, then motor through wild Northumberland National Park to the Scottish border. Stop for photos at Jedburgh before arriving in Edinburgh. Here, sightseeing with a Local Guide introduces you to the 200-year-old "New Town". In the "Old Town," visit Edinburgh Castle to admire Scotland's Crown Jewels. A suggestion for this evening: a traditional Scottish night out with Highland dancers, bagpipers, and, of course, the Ceremony of the Haggis. (B) Today's Distance: 121 mi/ 195 km
Your choice today: an optional morning excursion to Rosslyn Chapel, made world-famous by Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code, and also one of Scotland's most remarkable buildings. You will have ample time to visit the 15th-century medieval chapel and the visitor centre, and to take photographs of the ruins of Rosslyn Castle. Later, an optional tour of the Royal Yacht Britannia with dinner. For departures 27 July, August 3, August 10 and August 17, tickets are included for tonight's performance of the world-renowned Military Tattoo. (B)
A day of memorable sightseeing. Take the elegant Forth Road Bridge to St. Andrews, whose Royal and Ancient Golf Club has given us the rules of golfing, then cross the Firth of Tay and, via Dundee and Perth, head into the Highlands, with a stop in the Victorian mountain resort of Pitlochry. Cross the battlefield of Culloden Moor with its memories of Bonnie Prince Charlie, then via Inverness, head for your Highland destination. (B,D) Today's Distance: 221 mi/ 355 km
More spectacular Scottish scenery: Dornoch Firth, the Kyle of Sutherland, the Falls of Shin, the Mountains of Assynt, and Knockan Crag. Then, follow Strath Oykel for a visit to Ullapool, a remote fishing harbour on Loch Broom, before returning along Loch Glascarnoch. Our recommendation for this afternoon: join the optional Loch Ness Experience, which includes a cruise on the loch, followed by supper. (B) Today's Distance: 123 mi/ 198 km
More heather-clad moors as you drive through the western Highlands, all the way to Fort William beneath Ben Nevis. Glen Coe, where the MacDonald Clan was massacred in 1692, and a drive along the "Bonnie Banks" of Loch Lomond are scenic highlights on the way to Glasgow, Scotland's great cultural city. (B,D) Today's Distance: 183 mi/ 295km
On this morning's orientation drive through Scotland's largest city, see the fine 12th-century cathedral, imposing university buildings, and elegant Georgian squares, built by wealthy tobacco barons. Later, stop at Alloway, the birthplace of Robert Burns, before boarding the ferry for the Irish Sea, crossing to Belfast. (B) Today's Distance: 100 mi/ 160 km
Take the scenic route along the Antrim Coast to awe-inspiring Giant's Causeway, then let the province's story unfold as you head for the city of Derry. Arrive in Sligo, tonight's destination. (B,D) Today's Distance: 214 mi/ 344 km
Travel south to Galway, a popular seaside destination and a buzzing cosmopolitan district with vibrant shops and a busy cafe and bar culture. Then, cross the limestone plateau of The Burren to visit the spectacular 668-foot Cliffs of Moher. Tonight, a chance to attend an optional medieval banquet at a historic castle. (B) Today's Distance: 161mi/ 260km
Via Adare and Tralee into County Kerry. Breathtaking scenery this afternoon on the Dingle Peninsula, where the 32-mile Slea Head drive affords magnificent vistas of the Atlantic Ocean. Afternoon arrival in Killarney, your destination for the next two nights. (B,D) Today's Distance: 154 mi/ 249 km
At Killorglin, join the road known as the Ring of Kerry for a 100-mile coastal panoramic drive featuring sparkling seascapes, mountains dotted with brightly painted farmhouses, winding lanes bordered with subtropical vegetation, and spectacular views of the Lakes of Killarney. Then, a special optional adventure: take a horse-drawn jaunting car along the national park lakeshore for pictures of Ross Castle. Later, enjoy the optional outing to Tralee for dinner and a performance at Siamsa Tire, Ireland's National Folk Theatre. (B) Today's Distance: 100 mi/ 160 km
More scenic beauty as you head into County Cork. Stop in Blarney, famous for its Stone of Eloquence, with time at your leisure to see the castle, and shop for Irish crafts and handmade crystal. After lunch, drive past Cork, the country's second-largest city. Finally, pass Dungarvan and travel alongthe Copper Coast to the seaside resort of Tramore. Tonight, maybe join an optional pub tour before dinner at your hotel. (B,D) Today's Distance: 131 mi/ 211 km
On your northbound journey pause in Waterford, famous for its exquisite crystal, and visit Kilkenny, one of Ireland's prettiest towns with medieval cobblestone streets and Old-World charm. Afternoon arrival in Dublin-top off the day with an optional Irish cabaret evening including dinner, dance, song, and laughter. (B) Today's Distance: 128 mi/ 205 km
A day in the "Fair City" starts off with an orientation drive through Ireland's capital and includes statue-lined O'Connell Street, elegant Georgian squares, and St. Patrick's Cathedral. The rest of the day is free to enjoy Dublin at leisure. This evening's optional dinner excursion is to the famous Guinness Storehouse. (B)
Take the ferry across the Irish Sea to Holyhead on the Welsh Isle of Anglesey with its tongue-twisting names. Explore North Wales on the way to Caernarfon where the castle saw the investiture of Charles as Prince of Wales, before arriving in Liverpool. (B) Today's Distance: 180 mi/ 290 km
A day dedicated to Wales as you head south through the ancient market town of Builth Wells and Brecon Beacons National Park, land of salmon rivers and the Welsh mountain pony. In Cardiff, an orientation drive takes in Cathays Park with its splendid civic buildings and Cardiff [Travellers Notes] Headsets throughout the tour except London Departures August 7 06 and 210 include the Edinburgh Military Tattoo. [Transportation] Touring by private, first-class, air-conditioned motorcoach with free Wi-Fi; round-trip Irish Sea crossings by day ferry; ferry across the Shannon estuary Castle. Tonight's optional excursion is an evening of Welsh entertainment and dinner. (B) Today's Distance: 174 mi/ 281 km
Across the Severn Bridge to the elegant Georgian city of Bath, famed for its Roman relics. Into the West Country via Glastonbury and its legends of King Arthur, and wild and romantic Dartmoor with a visit to the picture-book village of Widecombe-in-the-Moor. Upon arrival in Plymouth, hear about Sir Francis Drake and see the Mayflower Steps, where the Pilgrim Fathers embarked in 1620. (B,D) Today's Distance: 198 mi/ 319 km
Today's excursion takes you to the pretty fishing village and former smuggler's port of Looe. Then, follow in the footsteps of Drake, Raleigh, and the Pilgrim Fathers on an optional cruise on Plymouth Sound, one of the world's greatest natural harbours. (B) Today's Distance: 45 mi/ 65 km
An interesting day heading into Thomas Hardy's Wessex and a visit to intriguing, prehistoric Stonehenge. Explore the visitor centre with its imaginative exhibitions, then admire the magnificence of the monument up close. Return to London in the early evening. How about celebrating the success of your tour with a night out on the town? (B) Today's Distance: 215 mi/ 346 km
Your holiday ends with breakfast this morning. (B)