Ireland and Britain Educational Tour

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Ireland and Britain tour map

Ireland and Britain

9 Days Dublin 2 • Killarney 2 • London 3

Accommodations

Accommodations in centrally-located three-star or four-star hotels. Rooming on a triple basis. Double rooms: $280 per person.

Transportation

Round-trip transportation on scheduled airline. Deluxe touring motorcoach.

Meals

All breakfasts. All dinners.

Guides

Services of a specially-trained passports Tour Director throughout.

Inclusions

Entrances and activities as noted on itinerary.

Travel Protection

passports provides and pays for a Post Departure Travel Protection Plan that includes coverage for Trip Interruption, Trip Delay, Baggage Loss or Delay, Medical Expense and Evacuation and more.

Days 1-2: Arrival Dublin

Arrival transfer

Day 3: Dublin

Half-day city sightseeing: Local Guide, St. Patrick's Cathedral, Trinity College and Book of Kells

Day 4: Dublin - Killarney

Rock of Cashel, Cashel Rock Museum, Blarney Castle with Blarney Stone, Blarney Woollen Mills

Day 5: Killarney

Ring of Kerry Coach Tour: Bog Village

Day 6: Killarney - London

Flight (checked luggage allowance is 20kg or 44lbs), Arrival transfer

Optional London Eye

Day 7: London

London City Sightseeing: Local guide

Optional Excursion to Windsor Castle

West End Theatre Performance

Day 8: London

Excursion to Hampton Court Palace

Optional Jack the Ripper guided walking tour

Optional Medieval Banquet at the Beefeater by the Tower

Day 9: Departure

Departure transfer

Days 1-2: Arrival

"Fasten your seat belts, ladies and gentlemen; we're now first in line for departure." A meal and a movie later the sky is orange off the left side, and it's Ireland that looms below. Begorra!

Settle in, relax and get ready to discover a fascinating city, the hometown of many distinguished writers such as William Butler Yeats, Jonathan Swift, James Joyce, George Bernard Shaw, Oscar Wilde, Bram Stoker (author of Dracula), and Samuel Beckett.

Day 3: Dublin City Sightseeing

A city tour highlights landmarks such as Dublin Castle, Ha'penny Bridge, Christ Church Cathedral, Georgian squares and the Dublin Spire, built to celebrate the new millennium and hailed as the world's tallest sculpture at nearly 400 feet. Of course, you'll see the General Post Office on O'Connell Street, which became the headquarters of the rebels in the Easter Uprising of 1916. From its steps, Patrick Pearse announced the establishment of a republic. See how the building still bears scars from the fighting.

Local Guide

A half-day local guide, well-educated and specially-trained on the history and culture of Dublin, will accompany you today.

St. Patrick's Cathedral

Visit Ireland's largest church, founded in 1191 near the well where, according to tradition, St. Patrick baptized converts. See the grave of Jonathan Swift, Dean of the Cathedral and author of Gulliver's Travels, who was laid to rest in 1745.

Trinity College and Book of Kells

At the prestigious Protestant college established by Queen Elizabeth I in 1592, you will view the Old Library and its best known treasure, the medieval Book of Kells.

Free Time in Dublin

The afternoon is unscheduled.

Consider a visit to the poignant Kilmainham Gaol Museum, where visitors are informed about the Easter Rising and the suffering of political prisoners once housed and executed there.

Take advantage of the free admission policy at the Archaeology and History branch of the National Museum of Ireland to view an extensive collection that ranges from 7000 BC to the late medieval period. Priceless items include the Tara Brooch, the Cross of Cong and Celtic artifacts made of gold, silver and glassware.

Save time for some shopping on pedestrian-only Grafton Street. Whether it's clothes, books, CD's or jewelry you're looking for, this is the place! Window shop alongside Dubliners, or fall for that great Irish cable-knit sweater you've always wanted!

Plan a visit to the Dublin Writers Museum to get better acquainted with Irish literature and writers connected with Dublin.

Day 4: Cashel, Blarney, Killarney

Drive through emerald hills to Cashel, in County Tipperary.

Visit St. Patrick's Rock, an outcrop rising from the Tipperary plain which once was the seat of the kings of Munster. St. Patrick is believed to have come here in AD 450 to christen King Aenghus. The rock is topped by the most interesting monastic ruins in Ireland, which include a cathedral begun in 1235, a superb round tower, and Cormac's Chapel, a Romanesque sanctuary consecrated in 1134. A short film titled Strongholds of Faith takes visitors back to the times when sites like Cashel were built throughout Ireland.

You will also visit the museum located in the undercroft of the Hall of the Vicars Choral, a 15th-century building which now serves as the visitors' entrance. It displays artifacts found on the site that illustrate how, for more than a millennium, Cashel served as a symbol of royal and priestly power in Ireland.

Proceed to Blarney, a village in the south of Ireland.

Not to be missed, of course, is Caisleán na Blarnan, a medieval fortress with an impressive keep. According to tradition, or a tad of blarney, the gift of eloquence is granted there by kissing the Blarney Stone.

While you are in Blarney, as time allows, pay a visit to Blarney Woollen Mills, a restored 19th-century factory where visitors may watch the weaving process and make purchases.

Proceed westward through Killarney National Park and its many lakes to the cheerful town of Killarney. The 3,414-foot peak of Carrauntoohil dominates the view to the west, surrounded by heather-covered hills.

Day 5: Ring of Kerry Coach Tour

The Ring of Kerry is a scenic route around the Iveragh Peninsula which you will discover today. It presents a breathtaking overview of Ireland's geography, including purple mountains, quaint villages, seascapes, bogs and narrow passes overlooking the sea. Observe the inhospitable Skellig islands from afar.

A visit is included to Bog Village, the replica of an early 18th-century community typical of southwestern Ireland with its small thatched houses. Learn how peat harvested from bogs was used as domestic fuel.

Day 6: Flight to London, Optional London Eye

Travel to Shannon, a new town located in county Clare, established on January 1, 1982. Intended as a town to house the workers of the newly-built Shannon Airport, it quickly gained in population for the closeness it was to other towns, such as Ennis and Limerick.

Today's flight takes you from Shannon Airport to London.

Settle into your hotel, then venture into your surroundings. Red, double-decker buses groan along the "wrong" side of the road, escorted by innumerable black taxicabs with engines that sound like sewing machines.

Optional London Eye

Enjoy a ride on one of the world's top ten Ferris wheels. It's magnificently situated by the River Thames, across from the Houses of Parliament. Revolving slowly above the London skyline, this "Millennium Wheel" takes visitors on a unique ride over England's capital city.

Day 7: London City Sightseeing, Optional Excursion to Windsor, West End Theatre

Enjoy a tour of the sights and sounds of the British capital. See such sights as St. Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, Kensington, and Trafalgar Square.

Local guide

A local guide will accompany your group.

Free time in London

The afternoon is unscheduled.

Consider a visit to the Tower of London to view Traitors' Gate, the Bloody Tower, the Block (where two of Henry VIII's ill-fated wives lost their heads), the White Tower and the Crown Jewels. If you choose to follow one of the Beefeaters, you'll also be able to visit the Royal Chapel.

Optional Excursion to Windsor Castle

Head to the town of Windsor, the location of royal residences for almost one thousand years, ever since William the Conqueror settled there in 1070.

A visit to Windsor Castle includes the State Apartments, Queen Mary's Dolls' House (a palace-within-a-palace with functioning lights, running water and Lilliputian-size books written by famous authors of the 1920s) and St. George's Chapel, one of the country's finest churches in the typically English style known as Perpendicular Gothic.

West End Theatre

Attend a performance at a West End venue. In London you can find anything you're looking for, from classical drama to Rodgers and Hammerstein. Perhaps a good tear-jerker?

Day 8: Excursion to Hampton Court Palace, Optional Jack the Ripper Walking Tour, Optional Medieval Banquet

Visit the magnificent Tudor palace set in an idyllic park laid on the bank of the Thames. You'll hear how it became a favorite retreat of King Henry VIII. Feel four hundred years of royal history resonate as you see highlights such as the Great Hall, the exquisite ceiling of the Chapel Royal, and the Tudor kitchens. Hampton Court Gardens are also historical treasures with their flower beds, fountains, and ornamental bushes. See how long it takes you to get through the famous multicursal hedge maze!

Free time in London

The afternoon is unscheduled.

You may want to visit to Tower Bridge, the very symbol of London with its twin Victorian Gothic towers. The bridge was inaugurated in 1894 when the bascules of its movable span were raised several times each day. Nowadays, when they are raised, advance notice is posted on Twitter!

The Tower Bridge Exhibition includes an audiovisual presentation, and a walk across the upper walkways for fantastic views of London and the Thames.

Optional Jack the Ripper guided walking tour

Experience thrills and chills on a guided walking tour of London "In the Footsteps of Jack the Ripper."

Optional Medieval Banquet at the Beefeater by the Tower

This evening, you will attend a Medieval Banquet, served by costumed hosts with Falstaffian good cheer. Revel!

Day 9: Departure

With images of your journey still vivid in your mind, race the sun westward aboard your wide-bodied jet. Write down what you remember best. You'll be home before you know it, eager to share your discoveries with family and friends.

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passports Educational Group Travel partners with teachers across the United States to provide high-quality educational travel experiences to their students. Educational tours visit destinations around the world - primarily France, Italy, England, Spain and Costa Rica - at low, guaranteed prices.


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