Trace the strands of Celtic, Viking, and Norman civilizations as you cruise from Scotland to England, then spend two days in Normandy to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day. 

Starting at: $7,395 Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 The evocative Eilean Donan  Glenfinnan Monument  The Jacobite steam train, traveling from Fort William to Mallaig  Iona Abbey  The village of Tobermory, Isle of Mull  Duart Castle, located on the Isle of Mull  The formal rose garden and manor house at Bodnant Gardens   One of many types of gardens at Bodnant Gardens  Caernarfon Castle in Wales. Credit: Britain On View/David Angel  In the heart of Ireland's Dublin  Section of the famous Bayeux Tapestry, a visual chronicle of the Norman conquest of 1066  Memorial sculpture, Omaha Beach  World War II cemetery near Omaha Beach, Normandy  The charming port of Honfleur

A Celtic Cruise

From Scotland to England Aboard the 220-guest Le Boréal

10-11 days from $7,395

Trace the strands of Celtic, Viking, and Norman civilizations as you cruise from Scotland to England, then spend two days in Normandy to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day. 

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

I loved the way the lectures on board ship tied into the history of places we visited. It made everywhere we visited mean so much more. I feel I could hold my own now in any conversation involving ancient Celtic cultures! 

- Carolyn E.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

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Overview

Trace the strands of Celtic, Viking, and Norman civilizations as you cruise from Scotland to England. The 2019 cruise features two days in Normandy to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day before concluding in Portsmouth, England.

Highlights Include (2019 cruise)

  • Scotland: Experience the dramatic landscapes and histories of the Highlands at Glencoe and Glenfinnan. Visit the serene monastery on the Isle of Iona, the birthplace of Christianity in Scotland, and see the town of Tobermory and the 13th-century Duart Castle on the Isle of Mull. Aboard ship, attend talks about Sir Winston Churchill by Allen Packwood, director of the Churchill Archives Center at Cambridge.
  • Wales: In this cradle of Celtic culture, explore the imposing Caernarfon Castle and lush Bodnant Garden.
  • Ireland: Enjoy a city tour of Dublin and view the Celtic heritage found in the 9th-century Book of Kells, then enjoy time to explore on your own.
  • France and D-Day Commemoration: Spend two in-depth days along the coast of Normandy. First, stop in Sainte-Mère-Église, where American paratroopers began the invasion, then visit Utah Beach, taken by the Americans. Gain further insight from Dwight David Eisenhower II, historian, and grandson of General and President Dwight D. Eisenhower, when you walk the shores of Omaha Beach and visit the American Military Cemetery, Pointe du Hoc, and Arromanches.
  • England: Cruise to Portsmouth and tour the newly refurbished D-Day Museum, then continue to Southwick House, the top-secret Allied naval headquarters.

*During this voyage, we will share the ship with other leading cultural and educational institutions, which will add to the excitement and energy of the experience.

I loved the way the lectures on board ship tied into the history of places we visited. It made everywhere we visited mean so much more. I feel I could hold my own now in any conversation involving ancient Celtic cultures! 

- Carolyn E.

2018 Itinerary

Day 1 — Depart the U.S. for Glasgow, Scotland

Day 2 — Glasgow

On arrival in Glasgow, embark the five-star Le Boréal. Join your fellow passengers for dinner on board the ship. (D)

Day 3 — Oban, Fort William, Scottish Highlands, Jacobite Train

Travel through the heart of the Highlands and see the picturesque Pass of Brander, Loch Awe—with views of the striking Kilchurn Castle—and Rannoch Moor, one of the last remaining wildernesses in Europe. Enjoy the splendor of majestic Glencoe and ride along the shores of Loch Linnhe en route to Fort William. After lunch, board The Jacobite steam train—immortalized as Hogwarts Express in the Harry Potter film series—for “one of the great railway journeys of the world” through awe-inspiring natural landscapes. Commencing in the shadow of Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in Great Britain, travel past Loch and River Morar to Mallaig near Loch Nevis, the deepest seawater loch in Europe. Along the way, visit Glenfinnan, where Bonnie Prince Charlie rallied Jacobite Highlanders against King George II in 1745.

Join the captain for a welcome reception on board this evening. (B,L,R,D)

Day 4 — Kyle of Lochalsh, Isle of Skye for Armadale

Travel to Kyle of Lochalsh and visit the 13th-century Eilean Donan Castle, named for a sixth-century Irish saint; it now stands as one of the most recognizable castles in the world. See the coastline of ethereal Isle of Skye, from where Bonnie Prince Charlie, against the odds and with the help of Flora MacDonald, was able to escape to France. Skye is home to some of Scotland’s most phenomenal geography, and the mist, shafts of sunlight and vivid rainbows congregate here in a dazzling array of colors that seem to make the glens greener and the sea bluer. Visit Armadale Castle’s spectacular 17th-century gardens and learn about the powerful reign of Clan Donald, Lords of the Isles until 1493. (B,L,D)

Day 5 — Isle of Iona, Tobermory, Isle of Mull

Go ashore at the Hebridean Isle of Iona, birthplace of Scottish Christianity. In 563 A.D., the Irish monk Columba founded a monastery here, where scribes would spend their entire lives painstakingly copying and illuminating religious tracts and transcribing ancient Celtic sagas into written form, preserving a record of oral bardic tradition. In later years, Iona became the burial place of Scotland’s kings, including Duncan and Macbeth. At Iona Abbey, stroll through the serene, restored monastery and see the churchyard’s intricate Celtic crosses. Later, join Allen Packwood as he presents the lecture “Churchill and the Two Republics: France and the U.S.” on board the ship.

Ferry across the Sound of Iona to the sheltered neighboring port of Tobermory on the Isle of Mull, where vividly painted houses are nestled between the hills and the harbor. After free time, visit the 13th-century Duart Castle, the ancestral home of the Clan Maclean, and have lunch in the castle’s tea room. (B,L,D)

Day 6 — Holyhead, Wales for Caernarfon

From Holyhead, travel across the Isle of Anglesey and over the Menai Strait to North Wales, one of the cradles of Celtic culture. Here, the people hold fast to the old ways and Welsh remains their mother tongue.

Visit beautiful Bodnant Garden, one of the finest examples of 19th-century Victorian landscape artistry. Enjoy lunch in a local restaurant and listen to a stirring private choir performance of Welsh hymns. Tour the imposing Caernarfon Castle, an impregnable 13th-century fortress built by Edward I of England as a defense against the marauding Welsh. Following tradition in place since 1301, Queen Elizabeth II invested the future heir to the British throne, her son Charles, as “Prince of Wales” at Caernarfon in 1969.

En route to the ship, view the beautiful, glacier-sculpted peaks and valleys of the Snowdonia Mountains in the distance. (B,L,D)

Day 7 — Dublin, Ireland

Built astride the River Liffey, Ireland’s historic capital has retained its rich heritage of Georgian architecture while confidently playing a major role in the New Europe. Enjoy an overview tour of the city, stroll through the stately quadrangles of Trinity College and view the incandescent illuminations of the 9th-century Book of Kells.

The afternoon is at leisure. Walk along colorful Grafton Street, savor a pint of Guinness in a neighborhood pub or visit the National Gallery of Ireland, one of the best repositories of Celtic treasures in the world.

Enjoy traditional Irish music and dance aboard the ship this evening. (B,L,D)

Day 8 — Cruising the Celtic Sea and English Channel

Enjoy educational lectures today, including Professor David Eisenhower’s “Triumph and Tragedy,” while cruising the Celtic and Irish Seas and the English Channel. Eisenhower shares captivating details about his grandfather, whose leadership reshaped the world. He provides fascinating insight on the worldwide ramifications of Operation Overlord, the Allies’ code name for the World War II military campaign that launched the D-Day airborne and amphibious invasion on Normandy. (B,L,D)

Day 9 — Caen, France, for Normandy Beaches

Travel through the scenic countryside to the historic Normandy beaches. In the company of David Eisenhower, walk where Allied forces landed on June 6, 1944, and visit the American Military Cemetery at St. Laurent, overlooking Omaha Beach. At Pointe du Hoc, envision the brave American rangers who scaled 200-foot heights to capture German gun emplacements.

See remnants of the floating artificial harbor code-named “Mulberry,” constructed to support Allied landings at Gold Beach, followed by an opportunity to see the Arromanches 360 Theater​ or visit the impressive 230-foot-long Bayeux Tapestry, a stunning visual chronicle of the Norman conquest of 1066.

Attend the captain’s farewell reception this evening. (B,L,R,D)

Day 10 — Depart Paris for the U.S.

Disembark and continue on the Paris and Giverny post-cruise option or transfer to Paris airport for your return flight to the U.S. (B)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)

2019 Itinerary

Day 1 & 2 — Depart the U.S. / Glasgow, Scotland

Depart the U.S. for Glasgow. On arrival, embark the Le Boréal. Enjoy dinner on board the ship Wednesday evening. (D)

Day 3 — Fort William for the Scottish Highlands

Enjoy a full day’s journey experiencing the rich, resplendent beauty of the legendary Scottish Highlands. From Fort William, travel to majestic Glencoe—Scotland’s most scenic glen, much of which is owned and preserved by the National Trust for Scotland. Stop near bucolic Glenfinnan, where Bonnie Prince Charlie rallied Jacobite Highlanders against King George II in 1745.

This evening, attend the Captain’s welcome reception and dinner on board the ship. (B,L,R,D)

Day 4 — Tobermory, Isle of Mull / Isle of Iona

Go ashore at the sheltered port of Tobermory on the Isle of Mull, where brightly painted houses are nestled between the hills and the harbor. Visit 13th-century Duart Castle, the ancestral home of the Clan Maclean, and enjoy lunch in the castle’s tea room.

Ferry across the Sound of Iona to the neighboring Hebridean Isle of Iona, the birthplace of Christianity in Scotland. In A.D. 563, the Irish monk Columba founded a monastery here, where scribes would spend their entire lives painstakingly copying and illuminating religious tracts and transcribing ancient Celtic sagas into written form, preserving a record of oral bardic tradition. In later years, Iona became the burial place of Scotland’s kings, including Duncan and Macbeth. At Iona Abbey, stroll through the serene, restored monastery and see the churchyard’s intricate Celtic crosses.

Later, join Allen Packwood as he presents the lecture “Churchill and the two Republics: France and the U.S.” on board the ship. (B,L,D)

Day 5 — Holyhead, Wales / Caernarfon Castle

From Holyhead, transfer across the diminutive Isle of Anglesey and over the Menai Strait to North Wales, one of the cradles of Celtic culture. Here, the people hold fast to the old ways, and Welsh remains their mother tongue. Visit beautiful Bodnant Garden, one of the finest examples of 19th-century Victorian landscape artistry. Stop in the charming seaside resort town of Llandudno for lunch, followed by a stirring private choir performance of Welsh hymns. Tour the imposing World Heritage-designated Caernarfon Castle, an impenetrable 13th-century fortress built by Edward I of England as a defense against the marauding Welsh. Following the tradition of seven centuries of monarchs, Queen Elizabeth II invested the future heir to the British throne, her son Charles, as Prince of Wales at Caernarfon in 1969.

Enjoy views of the beautiful, glacier-sculpted peaks and valleys of the Snowdonia Mountains on your return to the ship. (B,L,D)

Day 6 — Dublin, Ireland

Built astride the River Liffey, Ireland’s historic capital has retained its rich heritage of Georgian architecture. Enjoy a panoramic tour of the city, including the landmark St. Patrick’s and Christ Church Cathedrals and grand O’Connell Street, lined with bronze and marble statues of Irish statesmen; stroll through the stately quadrangles of Trinity College; and view the incandescent illuminations of the ninth-century Book of Kells.

The afternoon is at leisure to walk along colorful Grafton Street, savor a pint of Guinness in a neighborhood pub or visit the National Gallery of Ireland, one of the best repositories of Celtic treasures in the world. On board the ship this evening, enjoy a specially arranged traditional Irish music and dance performance. (B,L,D)

Day 7 — Tresco / Isles of Scilly, England

Visit the lush, 19th-century Tresco Abbey Gardens, home to more than 6,000 plant species. Built around the ruins of a Benedictine Abbey and oft compared to London’s Royal Botanic Garden as a “perennial Kew without the glass,” this subtropical landscape blooms with exotic plant life, its species ranging in origin from Brazil to New Zealand. Meander among spires of indigo Viper’s bugloss, broad-leafed tree ferns, flourishing aloes and bright-pink South African suikerbos in this surprising, magical haven. (B,L,D)

Day 8 — Cherbourg / Normandy, France, for Utah Beach / Sainte-Mére-Èglise

Begin your two-day exploration of historic Normandy by envisioning the heroic soldiers of the U.S. Army Second Ranger Battalion, who scaled the 100-foot sheer cliffs to capture German gun emplacements at Pointe du Hoc.  Then, continue to​ Utah Beach and Sainte-Mére-Èglise, the first French village to be liberated by American forces during World War II. Utah Beach, the westernmost shore of the five landing areas of the Normandy invasion, also figured as a key site during World War II. Nearby Sainte-Mére-Èglise is known for its great historical significance, including John Steele, the American soldier who famously caught his parachute on the church tower’s pinnacle. (B,L,D)

Day 9 — Caen for Omaha Beach

Dock in Caen and travel through the scenic countryside to the historic Normandy beaches. In the company of Professor Eisenhower, walk where Allied forces landed on June 6, 1944, under the direction of his grandfather, Supreme Allied Commander Dwight D. Eisenhower. Contemplate the solemn commemorative crosses and Stars of David in the American Military Cemetery overlooking Omaha Beach

Following lunch, continue to Arromanches to see the remnants of Mulberry Harbor, constructed by the British to support Allied landings on the Normandy beaches. View an engaging wraparound short film documenting the D-Day campaign at the Arromanches 360 Circular Cinema; or choose to see the famous 230-foot-long Bayeux Tapestry, a stunning visual chronicle of the Norman Conquest of 1066.

This evening, attend the Captain’s farewell reception and dinner on board the ship. (B,L,R,D)

Day 10 — Portsmouth, England / Disembark ship /London / Windsor (Runnymede)

Disembark and enjoy a picturesque transfer from Portsmouth to London to visit the D-Day Museum and Southwick House, Dwight D. Eisenhower’s headquarters, with an exclusive lunch and lecture in the historic Portsmouth Guildhall.

Accommodations for one night are in the deluxe Runnymede on Thames Hotel, including dinner. (B,L,D)

Day 11 — London / Return to U.S.

Transfer to London and continue on the London Post-Program Option or transfer to the airport for your return trip to the U.S.

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)