11 places to consider visiting in Edinburgh off the beaten track
Visiting Scotland: Standing stones, neolithic history and whisky
European Train journeys for mature and senior travellers
Located on a peninsula winding southwest into The Atlantic Ocean, Cornwall is among England's most culturally and geographically distinct regions. The scenery here is spectacular and varied, ranging from windswept moors to England's best (and warmest) beaches, craggy cliffs to verdant subtropical gardens.
Ireland's Gems: Definitive Guide for Travellers
Ireland’s Gems More than 11 million people travelled to Ireland according to the latest tourism statistics, lured by its lush scenery, historic landmarks, and centuries-old culture. (This number includes visitors to both Northern Ireland, part…
Highlights of Stonehenge and Avebury
Stonehenge and Avebury are outstanding prehistoric monuments, which are thought to date back to the Neolithic and Bronze Age. The ancient megaliths of these sites provide an insight into the mysterious rituals, beliefs, customs and engineering abilities of prehistoric peoples.
Walking tours for active travellers – tips for seniors
For the active mature and senior traveller be they a couple or solo traveller this article outlines preparation for walking tours even for the over 80's. It may on the Wainwright, the lake district or a pilgrims walk across Europe or St James Way, the Camino. This artices give advice on getting fit, shoes and socks including for particular advice for women on this topic.
Isle of Mull, Scotland
Escorted Tours of European gardens with Odyssey Traveller
Beaumaris Castle, Wales
Beaumaris Castle, Edward I of England’s architectural masterpiece built from 1295 to protect his territorial gains in the region. The historic castle is a world heritage listed site considered to be one of the most significant and sophisticated surviving examples of medieval military architecture.
Great Orme's Head, Wales
Great Orme’s Head is a prominent limestone headland on the coast in North Wales. Attractions include its massive Bronze Age copper mine, rich flora and fauna, stunning views from the summit, historic Orme tramway and Llandudno cable-car, and outdoor activities.
Stratford Upon Avon
Stratford Upon Avon is a town in England's west midlands, located within Warwickshire county. Stratford's most prominent claim to fame comes from its history as the birthplace of William Shakespeare, arguably the most famous playwright in the English language.
The Globe Theatre, London
The Globe Theatre that stands on London’s south bank today is not the same theatre that stood in Shakespeare’s time. The original Globe Theatre was destroyed in 1613 by a misfiring canon during a performance of Shakespeare’s Henry VIII...
St Michael's Mount, England
There’s also lots of history in Newquay. It was first settled in the Iron Age, evidenced by a hill fort which has ditches and six ramparts making it an impressive fortress, and experts claim there was continuously settlement from the 3rd century BC to the 5th or 6th century AD.
Questions about England
Questions About Wales
Stirling looks somewhat like a miniature Edinburgh with its cobbled streets, historic buildings and crag-top castle but it is an appealing and charming city in its own right with plenty to explore apart from its impressive castle. Often described as the 'brooch which clasps the Highlands and Lowlands together', thanks to its central location, Stirling is a history lover's playground with magnificent scenery as its backdrop. Stirling is the place where the Scots, led by William Wallace (of Braveheart fame), defeated the English at the Battle of Stirling Bridge in 1297 and where the Scots won again under Robert the Bruce at the Battle of Bannockburn only 17 years later. The city is very accessible, being less than an hour from both Glasgow and Edinburgh by train.
An elegant Georgian town on the edge of the magnificent Cairngorms National Park, Grantown- on-Spey is a planned settlement, founded in 1765 by Sir Ludovic Grant to be a centre for the linen industry. The town is surrounded by verdant woodland and mountains, making it a popular holiday destination for hikers, climbers, skiers and snowboarders. Its location near the River Spey means it is also a favourite haunt of fishermen. From Edinburgh, it is a four-hour journey on public transport.
The seafood capital of Scotland and the gateway to the Hebridean Islands, Oban is a beautiful waterfront town on a near perfect horseshoe bay. Located within the Argyll and Bute council area, Oban is surrounded by dramatic shores and spectacular country wilderness, making it a great place for exploring the coast and the Highlands. It is a great place for a holiday and there is nothing quite as relaxing as enjoying the country's freshest seafood while watching the sun set over the dark blue waters of the Firth of Lorn.
Fort William, Scotland
Fort William, located in Lochaber in the West Highlands, is often described as the 'Outdoor Capital of the UK'. With many beautiful landmarks nearby, it is has become a base for those keen on hillwalking, hiking and mountain biking. Located on the eastern shore of Loch Linnhe, there is much to explore around Fort William and thanks to the high level of rainfall, the scenery surrounding the town is beautifully verdant and rugged. As well as the wilderness to explore, there are interesting historical monuments dotted around Fort William, including a great museum and a couple of impressive castles. After Inverness, it is the second largest settlement in the whole of the Scottish Highlands. From Edinburgh or Glasgow, the journey takes between three and five hours depending whether you have your own vehicle or are taking public transport.
Regarded as the capital of the Scottish Highlands, Inverness lies along the River Ness and is the northernmost city in the United Kingdom. A vibrant cathedral city, Inverness is known for its proximity to the Loch Ness and many visitors make their way there each year to try and spot the infamous Loch Ness Monster (Nessie). It is a great base to explore the highlands and all the hidden gems dotted throughout the area. With wilderness on its doorstep, a charmingly beautiful city centre and that fresh highland air, Inverness is not to be missed.
Cleveland Way, England
This walking path along the English east coast links up the Wainwright Walking trail that has crossed from West to East, through the Lake district, the Yorkshire dales and the North York Moors. For the active walker be they men or women this is a great historical walk through the British landscape. You may wish to join an Odyssey small group walking tour to enjoy this experience with like minded people.
Alderney, Channel Islands
A tour of Alderney takes you to he most remote part of the Channel Islands. Participants on a tour of Alderney discover an atmospheric paradise for history buffs and nature lovers, an island of eerie ruins and stunning beautiful beaches.
Millennium Coastal Path, Wales
The Millennium Coastal Path was inaugurated by Queen Elizabeth II at the turn of the new millennium in 2000. It was part of the Millennium Coastal Park, a parkland transformed from around 20 kilometres of industrial wasteland along the Carmarthenshire coastline.
Caernarfon Castle, Wales
Edward I's massive Caernarfon Castle was a display of English might on Welsh territory. Caernarfon Castle was built on the shoreline, consisting of a castle, a walled town, and a quay all built at the same time. Construction of this massive project took 47 years to complete.
Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland since the 15th century but it has been inhabited since the Stone Age. It has been a Roman settlement, who constructed the Antonine Wall as the Empire’s northernmost defence, and also the home of the Celtic tribe Votadini.
Skara Brae, Scotland
The Neolithic village of Skara Brae was discovered in the winter of 1850. Wild storms ripped the grass and earth from a high dune then known as "Skerrabra" beside the Bay of Skaill, and exposed the ruins of ancient stone buildings. The discovery proved to be the best-preserved Neolithic sites in northern Europe.
Highlights of the Lake District
The Lake District is the glittering crown jewel of England’s countryside and sure to capture any traveller’s heart with its magic. Picture expanses of lush meadows swathed in flowers and shimmering blue lakes against craggy peaks and you’ll have some idea of the kind of beautiful scenery you can expect from exploring the Lake District.
Atlantic Ocean and How it Shaped Ancient Communities In Europe
Atlantic Ocean and How it Shaped Ancient Communities In Europe.
Markets of Victorian London
In the 19th century, markets were at the heart of London life. But markets were more than just places to shop. To visitors and residents of the city, they seemed to encapsulate Victorian London: vast, chaotic, and teeming with human life in all its diversity.
Discovering Medieval Chester: A Thriving Trade Centre
Chester was originally founded as Roman fort and has over 2000 years of history, but it is best known as a medieval city due its well-preserved Tudor architecture and observable legacies of its medieval past. Click to learn more.
Dry Stone Walls: An Alternative History of the British Isles
Throughout the nation, from Yorkshire to Orkney, miles of moss-covered dry stone walls snake their way through the open land. You would be forgiven for not looking twice. However, dry stone walls offer an alternative route into the history of humanity in the British Isles.
A Journey Through Britain's Roman Roads
Rome's roads constitute the most remarkable culmination of its technological, logistical and bureaucratic achievements. Even a brief understanding of their history and significance can enrich your experience walking tour of Britain.
800 Years of History: Discover the University of Oxford
With 800 or so years of history, the university has not only shaped the city Oxford but has become a significant part of the fabric of English history, enduring through times of social upheaval and great change.
Walking the Wainwright Walking Trail
In this article, we will know more about the famous long-distance walk, including what to expect during the walk and the fascinating sights we may encounter. We will also share advice on how to prepare for this epic journey across England by foot.
Touring World Heritage Sites in Europe, Asia, and Beyond
Touring World Heritage Sites in Europe, Asia, and Beyond You’ll often discover, when travelling, that some of the most spectacular and amazing sites you visit are listed on the World Heritage Site. But what exactly…
Traveller's Guide to Medieval England
A myth repeated about the medieval world is that ordinary people never travelled more than five or six miles from their home. In reality, this was far from true – travel was an important part of daily life in medieval England.
History of Wales: The Definitive Guide for Senior Travellers
History of Wales The Anglo-Saxons fell to the Normans in 1066, but it would take more than two centuries before England’s rulers–starting, crucially, with Edward I–turned their attention to dominating Wales. In this article, we…
Learning about Manchester's Early History
Learning about Manchester’s Early History Well-known parts of Manchester’s history include their textile boom during the Industrial Revolution and the first steam engine railway to Liverpool. But what about its precursor? Manchester saw different leaders…
Victorian Women's Fashion: The Definitive Guide for Travellers
Victorian Women’s Fashion The Young Queen Victoria by Franz Xaver Winterhalter (1842). Photographic reproduction from Wikimedia Commons. Victoria ascended the throne at the age of 18. In British history, the Victorian era refers to the…
Victorian England Rural Life: The Definitive Guide for Travellers
Victorian England Rural Life In this post we will look at what rural life was like on a country estate in Victorian England. Janet Sacks’ Victorian Country Life is a good reference for those who want…
New Discoveries about Britain's Stone Circles
New Discoveries about Britain’s Stone Circles We’ve written about Britain’s prehistoric stone circles before, but recent studies from 2017 to 2019 show there are likely more secrets to uncover about these Neolithic monuments. In this…
Travellers exploring Glasgow's Architectural Heritage
Travellers exploring Glasgow’s Architectural heritage. Travellers exploring Glasgow’s Architectural heritage can see so much within a 30 minute walking radius of the city centre. Glasgow’s historic buildings are an important part of the city’s…
Small Group Literary Tours of England for Seniors
England's Liverpool: Port City, Architecture Marvel
England’s Liverpool: Port City, Architecture Marvel The Beatles and the Merseybeat era, football, and the waterfront. Liverpool’s vibrant culture and rich history has more to offer than what you may already know. In 1207, King…
Medieval British Village Life: The Definitive Guide for Seniors
Life in the Medieval British Village In a previous article, we looked at the icons of the British village–the pub and the cottage–and looked at their history and evolution from Roman and Norman times. In…
Exploring Newcastle upon Tyne: The Definitive guide for Travellers
Exploring Newcastle Newcastle (or Newcastle upon Tyne) in northeast England is rich in architectural wonders and steeped in history. It was an important settlement on the River Tyne during Roman times, a thriving commercial hub in…
British Village Icons: Definitive Guide for Travellers
Icons of the British Villages: Pubs and Cottages The British pub and cottage figure prominently in the image of a (often romanticised) quintessential “British village”. In this article, we will give special attention to these…
Visiting Britain's World Heritage Sites
UNESCO World Heritage sites are well represented in Britain, beyond Stonehenge. This collection of Small group tours across England, Ireland, Wales and Scotland incorporates visits to these current and future sites in its programs for mature and senior travellers of up to 12 people, a mix of couples and solo travellers. Often on Walking tours and History in depth programs.
Georgian Style of Architecture: Definitive Guide for Seniors
Georgian Style of Architecture When the royal House of Hanover ascended the throne of the United Kingdom with George I in 1714, it ushered in a distinctive “Georgian style” seen in the architecture and interior…
Questions about Scotland for senior travellers.
History of Ireland: The Definitive Guide for Senior Travellers
History of Ireland Ireland (Irish: Éire) is an island carved into two after centuries of subjugation, foreign domination, and various conflicts that lasted until the 20th century. In this post, we will look at the riveting…
London's Victorian Architecture: The Definitive Guide for Travellers
Victorian Architecture of London London’s architecture during the Victorian Era was defined by the transformation of British society, due to the rapid changes of the Industrial Revolution. Industrialisation transformed British life, leading to innovative new…
Understanding British Churches: The Definitive Guide for Travellers
British Churches Through the Years “How old is this church?” asks Mary-Ann Ochota in a chapter of her book, Hidden Histories: A Spotter’s Guide to the British Landscape (Francis Lincoln, 2016, p. 250). In this article, we…
Questions about the Outer Hebrides, Scotland for senior travellers.
Studying Gargoyles and Grotesques: The Definitive Guide for Travellers
Studying Gargoyles and Grotesques Gargoyles and grotesques were a hallmark of the Gothic period of architecture, which grew popular in Western Europe from the 12th to the late 15th centuries, and which was carried over…
Personalities from Queen Victoria’s Britain
Famous Personalities from Queen Victoria’s Britain (Part 2 of 2) This article related to Queen Victoria’s Britain was prepared by one of our Odyssey Program Leaders, Mal Bock. She will be leading this small group tour especially…
Personalities from Queen Victoria's Britain
Ten key influencers that shaped Queen Victoria’s Britain (Part 1 of 2) This article related to Queen Victoria’s Britain was prepared by one of our Odyssey Program Leaders, Mal Bock. She will be leading this small group…
Queen Victoria's Britain part 2: The Definitive Guide for Travellers
Queen Victoria’s Britain (Part 2 of 2) This two-part article on Queen Victoria’s Britain was prepared by one of our Odyssey Program Leaders, Mal Bock. She will be leading this small group tour especially designed for…
Britain: First Industrial Nation
Britain: The First Industrial Nation In the mid-18th century, the Industrial Revolution was largely confined to Britain. Historians and economists continue to debate what it was that sparked the urbanisation and industrialisation that would change…
Scotland & Scotch Whisky
Bees in Manchester: a surprising symbol of the Industrial Revolution
Bees in Manchester: a surprising symbol of the Industrial Revolution The bee is an intriguing symbol for the city of Manchester. The city’s damp climate provided the ideal conditions for milling cotton. But this is…
Channel Islands; wildflowers, potato peel pies & rebels
Get ready to explore the Channel Islands Jersey, you say? Aren’t they the shirts footballers wear? Think again, traveller. Picture a smattering of tiny islands, a mere stone’s throw from England and France, peppered with…
The Lake District poets: Romanticism & inspiration
The Lake District poets: Romanticism and inspiration for Travellers “I wandered lonely as a cloud” Did a simple daffodil usher in the Romantic era? Poet William Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy came upon a “host”…
15 books on Britain's Industrial Revolution
Fifteen books on Britain’s Industrial revolution This reading list on Britain’s Industrial revolution complements Odyssey Travellers escorted small group tour that traces via the canal and railway network, the evolution of this monumental change in…
10 Books to Read If You Are Planning to Visit Britain
10 Books to Read If You Are Planning to Visit Britain For Odyssey Travellers, Britain has and remains a key destination in the organisation’s collection of escorted small group educational tours offered each year. For…
Industrial Revolution. Britain's contribution to the world
Pilgrimages of the World- Advice for Seniors & Mature travellers
Pilgrimage routes and walking tours Several pilgrimage tracks remain intact and active centuries after they were first established. Many Odyssey tours trace their routes, walking in the footsteps of people […]
Britain’s National Trust role for successful small group history tours
Britain’s National Trust: Historic houses, gardens and natural wonders Britain is home to many attractions, many of them rich in the region’s history. Sites and artefacts are preserved beautifully, and […]
Great Britain - a profile and travel tips for seniors
Great Britain. Travel tips for seniors. With over 36.115 million visitors in 2015 alone, Great Britain is the world’s 8th biggest tourist destination, offering a range of experiences to entice travellers […]
Standing Stones in Prehistoric Britain
Standing Stones in Prehistoric Britain Stonehenge, England, United Kingdom The standing stones of Great Britain continue to be the subject of research and archaeological hypothesis. Britain is not the only location where standing stones are…
Neolithic Burial Chambers: Telescopes to the Stars
Neolithic Burial Chambers and the stars The calendar you have in your smartphone was once written in the stars. During the Neolithic or final period of the Stone Age, skies […]