Celtic Classics – English Channel & Irish Sea Aboard Sea Cloud Spirit
This journey aboard the newly launched Sea Cloud Spirit is a delight of verdant gardens, medieval ruins, wild countryside, lively towns, and a strong heritage of music and culture. From Portsmouth, the ship heads south and crosses the English Channel for visits to Guernsey, an island off the coast of Normandy, and Saint-Malo, a dramatic walled city and French port that played an important role during World War II. Depart from the northern coast of France to Dartmouth, an English port rich with medieval history. Step ashore on Tresco in the Scilly Islands, where you will admire the glorious Abbey Gardens. Sail into the Irish Sea, where you will gaze upon rugged green coastlines. Dock in the charming ports of Holyhead in Wales and Belfast in Northern Ireland to explore lovingly maintained ancestral estates. On this eight-night cruise, discover enchanting coastal towns, and experience dynamic museums, private homes, and literary landmarks.
- Pricing from
- Trip Type
- Group Travel Tour, International Ocean & Sea Voyages
- Departure Dates
Jun 9, 2023 - Jun 18, 2023
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Depart for London on an overnight flight.
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM / PORTSMOUTH / EMBARK SEA CLOUD SPIRIT
Arrive this morning at Heathrow Airport, and transfer to Sea Cloud Spirit, which will be docked in Portsmouth. Gather for a welcome and safety briefing, and savor dinner on board as you sail across the English Channel to France.
HONFLEUR, FRANCE / CAEN / BAYEUX
From the port of Honfleur, visit historic Caen, whose Norman treasures have survived the centuries. Continue to Bayeux and the Memorial Museum of the Battle of Normandy. Then, visit the 11th-century cathedral and the Bayeux Tapestry, an embroidered depiction of the Norman Conquest and one of the most renowned works of art to survive from the Middle Ages. Stop at Malcolm Forbes’s 17th-century Château de Balleroy to visit the Musée des Ballons, which houses Forbes’s collection of hot-air balloons, and sip cocktails while enjoying views of its surrounding gardens. Return to the ship and sail west in the early evening for the Channel Islands.
SAINT PETER PORT, GUERNSEY, CHANNEL ISLANDS
Following our arrival at the island of Guernsey this morning, travel by ferry to the tiny island of Sark, a place nearly forgotten by time. Since there is no motor traffic here, the island’s 500 residents travel by horse-drawn cart or on foot. Enjoy the extraordinary vistas of this scenic area, and linger in the walled garden at La Seigneurie, where semitropical plants thrive in an unusual natural environment warmed by the Gulf Stream. Alternatively, visit the charming town of Guernsey, where you will tour the home of Victor Hugo. Set sail across the English Channel at midday. Gather for the captain’s welcome dinner and reception this evening.
DARTMOUTH, UNITED KINGDOM
Stand on deck this morning for our passage along the exquisite River Dart. Sea Cloud Spirit moors off the small town of Dartmouth, an important port during the Norman era, steeped in nautical tradition. Go ashore for a guided walk through the Elizabethan streets, and drive along winding country lanes to Slapton Sands, where American forces trained in great secrecy before the D-Day landings. Today, it is home to the Britannia Royal Naval College. Enjoy the afternoon at sea as Sea Cloud Spirit heads to the Scilly Islands.
TRESCO, SCILLY ISLANDS
In the morning, Sea Cloud Spirit threads a course through the submerged landscape of the Isles of Scilly. The ship will anchor off the island of Tresco, one of England’s truly special places. Explore the glorious Abbey Gardens, set amid the ruins of a 10th-century Benedictine monastery and renowned for their lush subtropical plants. With a mild winter climate, high walls, and hedges, the garden hosts plants from all around the world. Pass Land’s End before sundown on a northerly passage to the Irish Sea.
DAY AT SEA
Spend a day at sea, attending lectures and enjoying the amenities of Sea Cloud Spirit as we head to Wales.
From the port of Holyhead, travel overland to Lord Aberconway’s home and gardens at Bodnant Garden, which is considered one of the most extraordinary Edwardian naturalistic gardens in the world. Continue to Plas Newydd, a National Trust property with period furnishings and lovely gardens. By special arrangement, the estate’s owners will guide us through their personal collections. Return to Sea Cloud Spirit, and set sail during lunch on board.
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND
On a walking tour of revitalized Belfast, admire its rich Victorian and Edwardian architecture, and see the city’s famous peace walls and vivid murals. Or opt for a visit to the impressive Titanic Museum. Continue to Ballywalter Park, a spectacular 19th-century mansion. See the conservatory, with its opulent cast-iron dome, and the formal Victorian gardens. After lunch, tour the house and the surrounding landscapes with the owners. Return to Belfast, and set sail in the late afternoon. This evening, join the captain for a farewell dinner.
DUBLIN, IRELAND / DISEMBARK / RETURN
Disembark Sea Cloud Spirit, and transfer to the airport for flights home.
Everything you need to know about the tour
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