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Educationa lDiscovery of Europe & the UK - Insight Vacations

Educational Discovery of Europe & the UK

Private Custom Group

Duration: 18 days • Countries visited: England, France
Group trip type: School Groups

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Day to Day Itinerary

  1. Day 1: Welcome to London

    Welcome to London, an immense metropolis steeped in history and tradition. You are met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. The remainder of the day is free for you to relax after your long flight or to explore.  This evening we meet our Travel Director for an informative meeting about our trip.

  1. Day 2: University Town of Oxford & Shakespeare’s Stratford

    We leave London this morning and head off to Oxford, the ‘City of Dreaming Spires’, which is home to England’s oldest university. Here we see the city’s famous university buildings. Afterwards, see Churchill’s grave at Bladon, before taking a scenic drive through the golden stone villages of the Cotswolds to the market town of Stratford-upon-Avon, home to William Shakespeare, beautifully located beside the peaceful river Avon. (BB)

  1. Day 3: Sightseeing in Stratford & onto York

    We visit Stratford this morning and see Harvard House, New Place, the Royal Shakespeare Theatre and Parish Church, where Shakespeare was both baptised and buried. We journey to the half-timbered house where the bard was born, now a museum full of memorabilia relating to his life.  We then continue north to Roman York, renowned for its ancient enclosing walls, its quaint Tudor ‘Shambles’ and its superb Cathedral, whose 13th century Minster is one of the finest ever built. (BB)

  1. Day 4: Captain Cook’s Whitby

    This morning we drive to one of the most picturesque ports in England, Whitby. Its harbour is set in a ravine at the mouth of the River Esk. Dominated by the clifftop ruined Abbey, the narrow alleys and quaint streets climb down to the busy quayside, with its harbourside houses and small shops filled with crafts, curios, and antiques. We visit the parish Church of St Mary, one of the finest Anglo Saxon churches in the country, which is located 199 steps up from the old streets and sharing the clifftop with the Abbey. Its churchyard is famous for providing the setting which inspired Bram Stoker to write his classic novel – Dracula.  We then visit Whitby Museum to discover the life story of the town’s most famous inhabitant, Captain James Cook, who sailed from the port to change the history of the world. The Captain Cook Memorial Museum, his former home in Grape Lane, is furnished in the style of his times, which we visit next. (BB)

  1. Day 5: Cultural Highlights of Bristol

    We depart Whitby today and head back south through the English countryside via Nottingham and Birmingham to the city of Bristol. This is a city that has combined its unique maritime and architectural heritage. Bristol is home to Temple Meads Old Station, the SS Great Britain and the Clifton Suspension Bridge. Upon arrival we enjoy an orientation and wander through the streets to marvel at the medieval, Georgian, Victorian and contemporary architecture. (BB)

  1. Day 6: Georgian Bath, Stonehenge & London

    Today we make our way to the beautiful Georgian city of Bath, its curative waters famous since Roman times. We visit the 18th century Pump Room and Roman Baths, where parts of the Roman plumbing are still in use. We also see the 15th century Abbey. From here we continue our journey across Salisbury Plain, making a stop to visit the ancient monoliths at Stonehenge. From here, we then travel back to London for our overnight stop. (BB)

  1. Day 7: Eurostar to Paris

    This morning we are transferred from our hotel to Waterloo Station to take the Eurostar to Paris. After a journey of just two-and-a-half hours, passing through the famous Channel Tunnel en route, we arrive in Paris and are transferred to our hotel. Tonight, we take a Seine cruise on the famous Parisian boats. Then our illuminations excursion reveals the magic and grandeur of the ‘city of light’ – a vision to last a lifetime. (BB)

  1. Day 8: Highlights of Paris

    Today our sightseeing with a local guide shows us the highlights of the city! We see the Gothic Notre Dame cathedral, with its tale of Quasimodo, and then we drive past the immense facades of the Louvre to the Place de la Concorde and along the Champs Elysees to the Arc de Triomphe. It’s then time for a premium highlight, as we ascend the Eiffel Tower for fine views over Paris. We complete the trip with a visit to Napoleon’s tomb in the Eglise du Dome. The afternoon is at leisure to perhaps visit the Louvre’s superb collections or admire the impressionist paintings in the Musee d’Orsay. (BB)

  1. Day 9: Paris at Leisure

    Today you have the option of participating in a cookery lesson, which includes a visit to the markets where we’ll meet the locals who shop daily for the freshest foods, followed by a delicious lunch. Or perhaps take the funicular up to the bohemian painters’ quarter of Montmartre and Sacre-Coeur Basilica. (BB)

  1. Day 10: The Opulent Palace & Gardens of Versailles

    Today’s highlight visit is an excursion to the Palace and Gardens of Versailles, the imposing residence of Louis XIV, which reflects the extravagant lifestyle of the grandest court in history. Escorted by a local guide, we see the Queen’s apartments, the Hall of Mirrors and the Gallery of Battles. (BB)

  1. Day 11: Castle of Chenonceau & Trips

    We depart Paris today and travel through the Loire Valley where we see the mighty Chambord with its beautiful park and colossal chimneys. We then visit the fairytale Castle of Chenonceau. Built in 1513 by Thomas Bohier, this splendid jewel of the French Renaissance is spectacularly set overlooking the River Cher. During our guided visit we have time to admire the fine tapestries, richly decorated ceilings and the magnificent pieces, as well as manicured gardens, before arriving at our hotel in Trips. (BB)

  1. Day 12: Iconic World Wars Landmarks & Caen

    We travel north today to the city of Caen. We then spend the rest of the day exploring the D Day landing beaches, where there are poignant reminders of the Second World War, including Sword, Juno and Gold. Then it’s on to Arromanches to visit the Invasion Landings Museum and see the remnants of the artificial port, Mulberry B, which remain in the bay. We then continue to Omaha Beach to visit the American Military Cemetery of St Laurent. Afterwards, we follow the route of the Rangers depicted in Saving Private Ryan and visit the bunkers and Ranger’s Memorial at Pointe du Hoc. (BB)

  1. Day 13: Insight into WWI at Amiens

    This morning we travel to the beautiful medieval city of Amiens in the Somme area. Our first visit of the day is to the Historical de la Grande Guerre in Peronne. This fascinating and unique museum gives an insight into every aspect of WWI as well as the subsequent global ramifications. (BB)

  1. Day 14: Battle Fields & Arras

    We start our journey today by visiting the town of Albert, which allied troops passed through on their way to the actions during the Battle of the Somme in 1916. We visit the 1918 Armistice signing site en route from Albert and then visit the battlefields. We then inspect the Thiepval Memorial to the missing, and visit Newfoundland Park, a site where Canadian troops suffered very heavily from German machine gun fire during the opening hours of the battle. We then continue to the city of Arras, a vitally important city held by the Allies throughout the war. (BB)

  1. Day 15: Ferry Crossing to London

    We depart Arras this morning and drive to Calais for our ferry crossing over the English Channel to the white cliffs of Dover. After a short drive through the pretty Kent countryside, we return to London. (BB)

  1. Day 16: Highlights of London

    Today we enjoy a sightseeing trip with a local guide, beginning in London’s West End, where we pass Westminster Abbey, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square, Nelson’s Column, Downing Street, the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben and of course Buckingham Palace. This afternoon there is free time for you to perhaps visit the British Museum or to see the ancient treasures or the Old Masters in the National Gallery. (BB)

  1. Day 17: London at Leisure

    Today is perhaps an opportunity to visit the magnificent Tower of London, which is steeped in history of centuries of murder, treason and the untold secrets of the condemned. The splendidly dressed Beefeaters will tell you about the Tower’s history and the Crown Jewels. Alternatively take a ride on the London Eye or visit St Paul’s Cathedral. There is so much to discover in Europe’s most popular tourist centre. (BB)

  1. Day 18: Farewell London

    Our memorable trip ends today, when we are transferred to the airport for our flights home! (BB)

Meal guide: BB = Buffet Breakfast, HD = Highlight Dinner, D = Hotel Dinner, HL = Highlight Lunch

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