England and Scotland

England and Scotland

England and Scotland

11 Days

England, Scotland

London (4), Leeds (3), Edinburgh (2), Glasgow (1)

Overview

Embark on an unforgettable journey through the heart of the United Kingdom, exploring the vibrant cities, historic landmarks, and breathtaking landscapes of England and Scotland. From the bustling streets of London to the serene beauty of the Scottish Highlands, this journey offers a perfect blend of sightseeing, cultural experiences, and historical exploration. As you travel from the iconic sights of London to the ancient wonders of Stonehenge, the medieval charm of York, and the majestic castles of Edinburgh, you’ll uncover the rich tapestry of British history and culture. Join us on this captivating adventure and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Highlights

  • Discover the rich history of the United Kingdom, and even visit the place where the Magna Carta was signed.
  • See the iconic stops in London such as Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, Big Ben, and more.
  • Explore the King’s favorite royal residence, Windsor Castle, including the State Apartments and St. George’s Chapel.
  • Visit the iconic Neolithic stone circle of Stonehenge and uncover its astronomical significance.
  • Tour Bath the ancient Roman spa complex and learn about its history.
  • Visit the historic Stirling Castle, explore Trossachs National Park, and enjoy a serene cruise on Loch Lomond.

Itinerary

Welcome to London! Upon arrival at the airport, your tour director will be waiting to help you board the coach for the transfer to central London to begin our sightseeing tour. As you make your way, your guide will impart exciting stories and interesting facts about London’s long history. You will see London’s most iconic landmarks, including the Houses of Parliament and ‘Big Ben,’ Westminster Abbey, Trafalgar Square and more.

After lunch, visit the Tower of London, famous for its Beefeater guards, ravens and the Crown Jewels. Afterwards, the coach will take us to our hotel where we will be staying for 4 nights. Enjoy dinner and an early night to beat the jetlag.

Overnight: London

After breakfast, travel to Windsor to visit the stunning Windsor Castle. Dating back to Norman times, with sweeping landscaped gardens and turreted Round Tower, it’s easy to see why this impressive castle is the King’s favorite weekend royal residence. Enjoy a fascinating peek at the lavish State Apartments, home to priceless artworks by Rembrandt and Leonardo da Vinci, and visit St. George’s Chapel, the atmospheric final resting place of former monarchs including Henry VIII. You can visit Queen Mary’s Dolls’ House, a truly incredible structure complete with
working lifts, running water, electricity—all in miniature!

We will drive to Runnymede for lunch (payable locally) at the Magna Carta Tea Room before visiting the Magna Carta Memorial. Seen by many as the birthplace of modern democracy, this open landscape beside the River Thames was witness to King John’s historic sealing of the Magna Carta over 800 years ago, on June 15, 1215. As well as a monument to the legacy of the Magna Carta, you’ll find further memorials to John F. Kennedy and the Commonwealth Air Forces, and a series of art installations, including unique works by Hew Locke and Mark Wallinger.

When you return to London, take the opportunity to explore more of the city at your own pace before dinner.

Overnight: London

After breakfast, explore the heart of London during a walking tour with your tour
guide, including a photo stop at Horse Guards Parade to see the mounted soldiers of
the Household Cavalry. Then stroll through St James’ Park to Buckingham Palace,
the official London residence of His Majesty King Charles III, to watch the Changing of the Guard Ceremony.

After lunch (payable locally), you’ll have more time to explore London. Later, take a ride on the iconic London eye for epics views of the city from above. Return by coach to London for dinner in a traditional pub before enjoying an evening of ten-pin bowling!

Overnight: London

After breakfast, depart for a day trip to Oxford. With numerous museums including the Ashmolean, Britain’s first botanic garden and historic university colleges, the walking tour of Oxford will include visits to the Bodleian Library and Christ Church, featured in Harry Potter films. We will also see the city from the water, during a punt along the scenic River Cherwell. Enjoy lunch in Oxford (payable locally). At the end of the day, return to London for dinner and a good night’s rest.

Overnight: London

After breakfast, say goodbye to London and travel north through the scenic English countryside to Lincoln, where you will have lunch (payable locally). Afterwards, enjoy a guided walking tour with a stop at Lincoln Cathedral, a towering masterpiece of medieval architecture that has stood as a symbol of faith for centuries. Then, you will visit Lincoln Castle, a formidable fortress steeped in history, with its ancient walls, Victorian prison, and an original 1215 Magna Carta manuscript. Late afternoon, the journey continues to the vibrant city of Leeds, where you will be staying for 3 nights. Enjoy dinner and settle into your hotel for the night.
Overnight: Leeds

After breakfast, start the day with a tour of Leeds, exploring the eclectic mix of historic and modern landmarks, from the majestic Town Hall, the Corn Exchange and city market, to the innovative architecture of the Leeds Dock area. Here, we will visit the Royal Armories Museum, displaying thousands of incredible objects from the world’s finest collection of arms and armor, spread over five floors. After lunch (payable locally), head to the charming village of Howarth to visit the parsonage which was home to the Brontë sisters, Anne, Charlotte and Emily, who were well-known poets and novelists. During the return journey to Leeds, we pass through Ilkley, stopping for a short walk on Ilkley Moor to the Cow and Calf Rocks, a famous landmark with panoramic views from the rocky outcrop over the distant Yorkshire Dales. Rest on the busride back to Leeds and enjoy dinner before returning to your hotel.
Overnight: Leeds

After breakfast, the group will embark by coach on an unforgettable day excursion to the city of York, where centuries of history and culture await to be explored. On arrival, visit the National Railway Museum, where you will step back in time as you wander through the collection of historic locomotives, carriages and railway memorabilia. From majestic steam engines to sleek modern trains, the museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the evolution of rail travel in Britain. Then venture into the heart of York, with a walk along the ancient city walls, to visit the awe-inspiring York Minster, a majestic masterpiece of Gothic architecture and one of the largest cathedrals in Northern Europe. After lunch (payable locally), you will discover the city’s Viking heritage at the Jorvik Viking Centre. Immerse yourself in the sights, sounds, and smells of Viking-era York as you journey through reconstructed streets, immersive exhibits and uncover archaeological treasures that shed light on York’s Viking past. As the day unfolds, indulge your sweet tooth with a visit to York’s Choco Story, a museum dedicated to the history and art of chocolate. Discover the fascinating story of chocolate from its ancient origins to the present day, learning about its cultural significance and production process. Savor delicious samples along the way and even try your hand at crafting your own chocolate creations. During your visit to York you’ll also enjoy a walk through the narrow, winding streets of ‘The Shambles’ and stop at ‘Whip-Ma-Whop-Ma-Gate’, the shortest street in the city, but with the longest name! Return by coach to your hotel for dinner and a good night’s rest.
Overnight: Leeds

After breakfast, check out of the hotel and board your coach to travel towards Newcastle to visit the Beamish Living Museum of the North. Here you can take a tram ride back in time and become immersed in real, living history as you walk down an Edwardian cobbled street and meet the costumed folk who will tell you about life in the north of England in the olden days. You’ll also experience the dark, wet and cramped working conditions of a miner during a guided tour down the coal mine. After lunch at Beamish, we continue to Edinburgh, arriving late afternoon. This is Scotland’s capital city and one of the most active cities in Northern Europe. Its monumental center has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its castle overlooks the city’s steep streets and parks. After dinner, return to your hotel to rest up for the days ahead.

Overnight: Edinburgh

After breakfast, meet your local guide and discover Scotland’s capital city. Explore Edinburgh to compare and contrast the wide streets and elegant mansions of the Georgian 200-year-old “New Town” with the narrow lanes and medieval townhouses along the Royal Mile, the oldest part of the city. You will visit Real Mary King’s Close to experience over 400 years of history. From myths and legends, to the deadly plague and a famous royal visitor, there’s a myriad of tales just waiting to be told on this one hour guided tour. The morning ends with a visit of the imposing Edinburgh Castle with its splendid views over the city. Highlights of the visit include the Royal Palace and Honors of Scotland, the oldest Crown Jewels in Britain, and the Scottish National War Memorial. After lunch (payable locally), the rest of the day is free for you to explore Edinburgh at your own pace, perhaps visit the National Museum of Scotland. At the end of the day, return to your hotel and enjoy dinner before bed.

Overnight: Edinburgh

After breakfast, depart Edinburgh and head through the Bannockburn battlefield to visit Stirling Castle, one of the largest and most important castles in Scotland, built on a volcanic crag and surrounded on three sides by sheer cliffs, which made it easy to defend. Afterwards, you’ll continue the journey to explore the Trossachs National Park and Loch Lomond. The landscape of this area has greatly influenced the history and literature of Scotland. It inspired the first tourists to venture into the Highlands. After lunch (payable locally), you’ll embark on a short cruise on Loch Lomond, the best way to admire Britain’s largest lake and enjoy the magical and serene atmosphere of the surrounding mountain scenery. Late afternoon, you’ll continue to Glasgow for panoramic tour of the city.

Overnight: Glasgow

After breakfast at the hotel, time at leisure until your coach transfer to Glasgow Airport for your flight home. We hope you had a magical time in the UK!

This Trip Includes

  • Round-trip airfare
  • All accommodations on program
  • All transportation in-country
  • All breakfasts and dinners on the program
  • All activities as outlined in the itinerary
  • A Tour Director available 24 hours a day from when you arrive until you depart
  • Sightseeing tours and excursions led by local guides as specified
  • Airport transfers and transportation between destination cities
  • Travel insurance for all participants
  • 24-hour worldwide emergency assistance
  • Support from GEC representatives abroad