There’s no finer way to see the splendid British countryside than by traveling aboard one of the world’s most luxurious trains.
The Royal Scotsman, making a rare cross-border foray, will be your home for a 7-night exclusive, memorable journey around Scotland, Wales and England—exploring the very best of Great Britain.
IRT Exclusive: Click here to see our video of Society President Eleanor Hardy’s trip on the Belmond Royal Scotsman.
This new tour has proven to be very popular; book early to avoid disappointment! Only one annual departure.
Day 1: Depart Edinburgh
The Royal Scotsman departs Edinburgh early afternoon and heads west to Perth. Enjoy afternoon tea as you continue north on the Highland line to Aviemore. Arrive early evening in the peaceful Highland village of Boat of Garten. Cocktails are served followed by an informal dinner.
Day 2: Rothiemurchus; Strathisla
Spend the morning at Rothiemurchus, with various options including clay pigeon shooting and wildlife walks.
Rejoin the train and head north to Inverness, soon arriving Culloden Battlefield, where the last battle on mainland British soil took place in 1746, for a visit.
This afternoon, whisky connoisseurs can visit Strathisla Distillery, home of one of Scotland’s most famous malts, Chivas Regal, for a tasting and tour. Dinner on board and overnight stabling in Dundee.
Day 3: Chester; Llanrwst
Enjoy breakfast and lunch on board as the train rolls into England, past the fringes of Lake District National Park, with its stunning scenery and abundant wildlife. Afternoon walking tour of the beautiful walled city of Chester, ending with a drinks reception at the magnificent Chester Cathedral.
Rejoin the train and cross another border, this time into the Land of the Red Dragon, Wales. While dinner is served, the train wends its way through Welsh valleys to Llanrwst, where you disembark for a visit of Gwydir Castle, a fine example of a Tudor courtyard house, built around 1500.
See the paneled dining room dating from the 1640s following its repatriation from the New York Metropolitan Museum.
Day 4: Portmeirion; Ffestiniog
Visit the walled town of Caernarfon, with its picturesque castle.
Transfer to the quaint Ffestiniog Railway, and enjoy a ride on the oldest independent railway company in the world. This narrow-gauge railway was built in the 19th century and travels past the edge of Snowdonia National Park from Porthmadog and skirting hillsides.
Dinner is served on board as the train returns to England.
Day 5: Bath; Oxford
Breakfast is served as the train heads south to the spa city of Bath. This UNESCO World Heritage site has some of the most magnificent Georgian buildings anywhere in the UK. Take a guided tour around the Roman Baths, built around Britain’s only hot spring. Free time to wander around the city and indulge in some of the stylish shops before rejoining the train.
Dinner will be at one of the UK’s finest country house hotels, the Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons. This gorgeous manor house is also home to one of the UK’s best restaurants, under the watchful eye of chef/ patron, the renowned Raymond Blanc. Return to the train for after-dinner drinks.
Day 6: Cambridge
Morning exploration of Cambridge, home to the historic Corpus Christi college, including the Parker library, with its medieval and Renaissance manuscripts. Enjoy a leisurely punt on the River Cam. Overnight stabling in Scarborough.
Day 7: York
Breakfast is served en route to the Roman walled city of York, where you have a guided tour or free time to explore. Take in the splendor of York Minster, the largest Gothic Cathedral in Northern Europe; or admire the 700-year-old timber-frame houses on The Shambles.
Railway enthusiasts can visit the National Railway Museum, home to the UK’s rail collection, including Stephenson’s Rocket, Mallard and perhaps the most famous engine of all, the Flying Scotsman. Enjoy coffee at Fairfax House, regarded as the finest Georgian townhouse in England.
Our train departs York traveling up through Northumberland into Alnmouth, where we disembark for a private viewing of Alnwick Castle followed by an exclusive farewell dinner. Alnwick Castle was first built over 900 years ago, to keep the Scots out of England. Thankfully today’s proprietors are more welcoming! Rejoin the train for your final night on board.
Day 8: Edinburgh
After breakfast, return to Edinburgh mid-morning.
2017 Dates:July 7-14
2018 Dates:July 6-13
For approximate exchange rates, visit http://www.xe.com.
Prices are per person.
Prices are subject to change daily.
Note: Prices are per person and include all table d’hôte meals, all alcoholic and other beverages, all sightseeing excursions as shown in the itinerary and accommodation on board based on two people sharing a twin compartment or one person in a single.
This very special tour only runs once annually, and is limited to 36 guests. Book early to avoid disappointment!