Destination: British Isles

Discover Great Britain and Ireland | Small Group Tours British Isles.

Immersed in rich history, vibrant culture, and breath-taking landscapes, Great Britain and Ireland stand as captivating destinations for travellers. Our small-group tours through the British Isles cater specifically to mature or senior travellers seeking to delve into the essence of Britain and Ireland through expertly guided intimate tours. Whether strolling through the historical sites of England, Scotland, and Ireland or retracing the footsteps of the Industrial Revolution, Odyssey Travellers’ meticulously curated tours offer an unparalleled exploration of the British heritage. While ensuring you visit iconic landmarks, we also pride ourselves on providing unique experiences that veer off the conventional tourist trails in our extensive collection of British tours.

Nestled in the picturesque British Isles, a small corner of the world with a significant global impact. For enthusiasts of English literature, iconic sites like Anne Hathaway’s Cottage, the Lake District, and Bath offer a literary journey through the realms of Shakespeare, Jane Austen, and the Romantic Poets. History buffs can explore medieval castles, the Tower of London, and St Paul’s Cathedral. In Scotland, immerse yourself in local culture with traditional delights like ‘neeps and tatties’, the Edinburgh military tattoo, and fine whiskey. Wales beckons with its charming yet often overlooked coastline, perfect for a leisurely walking tour.

Crossing over to Ireland via the St George’s Channel, Dublin unveils its historical gems such as the Book of Kells, O’Connell Street, and the majestic St Patrick’s Cathedral, providing insights into the country’s tumultuous past. Venture off the typical tourist trail to Northern Ireland, where the awe-inspiring Giant’s Causeway awaits. Throughout our travels, we carve out time to marvel at the breathtaking landscapes of the British Isles: the idyllic Cotswolds and its quaint villages in England, Wales’ rugged Snowdonia National Park, the captivating Scottish highlands with Loch Lomond, and Ireland’s natural wonders like the Cliffs of Moher and Killarney National Park along the Ring of Kerry.

Embark on an Odyssey tour to Scotland, Ireland, England, or Wales, each meticulously guided by a tour manager and often complemented by a local expert guide. Whether you are a first-time visitor exploring Ireland or a seasoned traveller venturing into the Scottish highlands, our dedicated tour directors craft detailed itineraries to ensure a seamless sightseeing experience. For those on walking tours spanning England, Scotland, and Ireland, your tour manager ensures a well-prepared excursion, from countryside hikes across rolling hills to leisurely breaks in charming villages. With over 100 departures annually, our small group tours of the British Isles cater to mature and senior travellers seeking enriching experiences in 2020-2021.

Articles about the British Isles

A well preserved Roman road.

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.

28 Nov 19 · 14 mins read
Read Article
Manchester canals boats

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…

12 Feb 19 · 8 mins read
Read Article
Lacock Abbey, Britain's National Trust

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 kept safe from future development.…

31 Jul 17 · 10 mins read
Read Article
Cottages in Cheshire

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…

9 Oct 19 · 12 mins read
Read Article
Enclosure farming system, typical of the 19th century, in Yorkshire.

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.

28 Nov 19 · 12 mins read
Read Article
Exploring Britain's Neolithic past

Exploring Britain's Prehistoric Past: The Definitive Guide for Travellers

Article on Britain's neolithic past for small group educational tours for senior couples and mature solo travellers interested in learning about Standing stones, burial chambers, Skara Brae and Stonehenge or Beaker people.

8 Oct 19 · 13 mins read
Read Article


When is the best time to go on your UK trip?

Spring (late March to early June) and autumn (September to November) are the optimal seasons to visit the United Kingdom. During these times, the weather is typically warm and dry, offering visitors the chance to witness the blooming of beautiful spring flowers or the vibrant changing of leaves in autumn. This period also allows tourists to steer clear of the busier summer months, enhancing their overall experience.

Why choose a small group tour?

Since 1983, Odyssey has been a distinguished provider of educational small group tours tailored for seniors, with group sizes typically ranging from 6 to 12 individuals, capped at a maximum of 18 travellers. Specializing in enriching educational, cultural, and heritage journeys, our programs are meticulously crafted to stimulate minds and push boundaries. Geared towards active and curious explorers, our tours offer a unique small group setting conducive to immersive learning experiences.

What's the accommodation like on a group tour?

In urban centres, Odyssey accommodates guests in conveniently situated 3-4 star hotels, offering convenient access to public transportation. For smaller communities or rural settings, our preference leans towards family-operated hotels or cosy guesthouses. For extended tours where guests remain in one place throughout the itinerary, we opt for serviced apartments to provide a comfortable and homely setting for our travellers.

What ages are the group holidays suitable for?

Odyssey Traveller specializes in catering to travelers aged 50, 60, 70, or 80 and above, whether they are exploring solo, with a partner, or in a group of friends. Your fellow travelers are likely to resonate with your interests, ensuring a shared experience in a setting of mutual understanding. Our programs are thoughtfully crafted with the mature traveler in focus. Even when journeying solo, you are never truly alone – during leisure time for exploration, there will be other solo travelers or couples eager to accompany you if you so desire. Notably, single travelers comprise about a third of our groups, with many becoming regular participants in our tours.

How big are the group sizes on your tours?

Odyssey specialises in educational small group tours, for seniors, typically groups between 6 to 12 people, and averages at 12 participants per tour, a mix of singles and couples.

First solo trip with Odyssey?

Odyssey provides a curated selection of authentic small group tours, which are strategically priced to mirror the intimate nature of these experiences. Unlike larger tour operators accommodating groups of 18 or more, our small group tours typically consist of 6 to 12 individuals. This ensures a personalized setting where travelers can relish evening meals together around a single dinner table. By prioritizing smaller group sizes, we prioritize creating an atmosphere where our clients can immerse themselves fully in the unique and engaging experiences we offer, rather than aiming for the economies of scale achievable with larger groups on coaches – an aspect of travel that distinguishes our tours at Odyssey.

Odyssey tours are genuinely based around;

  • A Small group tour of less than 18 people for the mature traveller as holidays for a couple and holidays for solo travellers over 50.
  • Knowledgeable local expert guides and a great tour leader who has an interest in the theme of the tour.
  • Inclusive pricing, including all entrances, tipping and the majority of meals included. That means, no hidden extras with respect to cost. Transparent pricing of the single supplement for the single traveller.
  • A learning based escorted tour with a like minded fellow traveller.
  • Accommodation in 3 & 4 star hotels and self catering apartments.
  • A blend of group learning, touring activities and free time to explore a place further, whether on a discovery or walking holiday program.
  • No name badges or flags to follow when out and about.
  • Travel to places that extend your learning and curiosity, often where others will not follow.
  • Spending typically between 60 to 85% of the operating cost of the tour in the country visited, benefiting the local communities directly.

Do you have any other holidays that aren't with a group?

Odyssey welcome enquiries for private groups, at a minimum of 6 participants.

What is a small group tour?

Odyssey Travel’s small group tours typically span 2 to 3 weeks, with stays of 2 to 3 nights in each location at quality 3 or 4 star hotels. These escorted tours offer a balanced mix of sightseeing and leisure time. Travelers have opportunities to break away from the group for a half or full day to explore independently or with companions before moving on to the next destination. For solo travelers over 50, Odyssey offers a wide selection of holidays, although they do not provide regular river cruises or specific solo travel tours.

Solo travelers booking Odyssey Travel tours will incur a single supplement fee, covering the cost of single occupancy accommodations with a double bed (single bed rooms are generally not available across Europe) or a single cabin on cruises. There are no extra charges beyond the single supplement for clients aged 50 and above booking solo travel packages, ensuring transparent pricing for all travelers.

Which countries do small group tours go to?

Odyssey Traveller offers an array of captivating tours spanning the globe, including Europe, The British Isles, Asia, Africa, The Middle East, and The Americas. Embark on an enchanting journey to witness the mystical Aurora Borealis in the remote corners of Norway, delve into the lush jungles of Madagascar to immerse yourself in its breathtaking landscapes and wildlife, or marvel at the ancient splendor of Machu Picchu in South America. For those intrigued by history, partake in a thematic exploration of Britain’s historic canals and railways. If cruising is your preference, join our unforgettable venture through Mongolia and Russia, featuring a 10-night river cruise from Moscow to St. Petersburg, or set sail on the legendary Nile River during our Egypt tour.

For travelers seeking adventures closer to home, we offer an exceptional selection of tours in Australia, ranging from Western Australia, South Australia, and the Northern Territory to Kata Tjuta, Outback Queensland, Kangaroo Island, Tasmania, and New Zealand. Explore the scenic wonders of both the North and South Islands, including the majestic landscapes along the east coast, the geothermal marvels of Rotorua, the serene beauty of Milford Sound, and the adrenaline-pumping activities in Queenstown.

Join 22,383 like-minded travellers receiving our weekly newsletter.

Special offers and promotions
A$350 AUD first trip travel voucher
The latest tours and articles