Three Jewels of the North Atlantic: Dublin, London and Edinburgh

Discover the storied history of the British Isles with experts and on your own as you explore London, Edinburgh and Dublin while gaining special insight into its people and politics.
Rating (4.82)
Program No. 22819RJ
14 days
Starts at
Flights start at

At a Glance

The storied history of the British Isles can be traced through three of its capital cities, a gripping tale as rich in rivalry as it is in cooperation. Discover how these cities rose to prominence, delve into the lives of the proud people who live there and their uncertain political future after historic, recent government upheaval. From the castles of London to the Lowlands of Scotland, experts will usher you through seats of political power, world-class museums and the sheer majesty of the British countryside before that world-famous Irish welcome awaits you over the sea.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to two miles daily on varied surfaces and standing up to three hours. Cobblestone streets; steep steps without railings.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 10 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Embark on a grand educational expedition across the length and breadth of the British Isles.
  • Meet welcoming locals and go inside the world of the royals in London and Edinburgh.
  • Compare and contrast the culture, politics and history of these closely linked nations.

General Notes

Program includes independent time to explore the city and several meals on your own. Group Leaders will provide directions for self-directed excursions. Suggestions for free-time activities provided in preparatory materials.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Ireland: The Emerald Isle and its People
by Mark Morris and Anthony Cassidy
London A Social History
by Roy Porter
'Roy Porter, a historian of formidable range, turns to urban history in this marvellously lucid, informative and passionate book... Porter's facts are always at the service of the narrative, which has a finely maintained momentum, balancing statistics with the words of historians, diarists and novelists, poets and churchmen: Pepys, Boswell, Fielding, Walpole, Blake, Mayhew, Wells, Woolf, Spark, ... a timely and brilliant book.' CLAIRE TOMALIN, EVENING STANDARD 'A vivid celebration of the city, but also an elegy for its decline, bubbling with statistics and anecdote, from Boadicea to Betjeman.' RICHARD HOLMES, DAILY TELEGRAPH BOOKS OF THE YEAR
Ireland in Mind: An Anthology
by Alice Leccese Powers
Editor Powers presents three centuries of fiction, poetry, and essays on the Emerald Isle by a stellar cast of mostly Irish, English, and American writers. What is portrayed is not the stereotypical Ireland of facile travel writing but an altogether deeper and profounder place.
Stroller’s guide to Dublin
by Gerry Boland
7 Days in Dublin: Everything to See and Do
by Shane Kennedy
The English: A Portrait of a People
by Jeremy Paxman
What is it about the English? Not the British overall, not the Scots, not the Irish or Welsh, but the English. Why do they seem so unsure of who they are? As Jeremy Paxman remarks in his preface to The English, being English "used to be so easy". Now, with the Empire gone, with Wales and Scotland moving into more independent postures, with the troubling spectre of a united Europe(and despite the raucous hype of "Cool Britannia"), the English seem to have entered a collective crisis of national identity.
The Literary Companion to Edinburgh
by Andrew Lownie
Traces Edinburgh's history from the Castle to the Royal Mile to the New Town and surrounding villages and charts the city's literary past and present.
Ireland : The Emerald Isle and Its People
by Mark Morris and Anthony Cassidy
See Dublin on foot, an architectural walking guide
by Julie Craig
by Edward Rutherfurd
Available in audio-cassette form: ISBN 0679443819 - fiction but gives a real feel for the period. London has perhaps the most remarkable history of any city in the world. Now, its story has a unique voice. In this epic novel, Edward Rutherfurd takes the reader on a magnificent journey across sixteen centuries from the days of the Romans to the Victorian engineers of Tower Bridge and the era of Dockland development today. Through the lives and adventures of his colourful cast of characters, he brings all the richness of London's past unforgettably to life.
London - The Biography
by Peter Ackroyd
Probably there is no one better placed than Ackroyd--the author of mammoth lives of Dickens and Blake, and novels such as Hawksmoor and Dan Leno and the Lime House Golem which set singular characters against the backdrop of a city constantly shifting in time--to write such a rich, sinewy account of "Infinite London". Ackroyd's London is no mere chronology. Its chapters take on such varied themes as drinking, sex, childhood, poverty, crime and punishment, sewage, food, pestilence and fire, immigration, maps, theatre and war. We learn that gin was "the demon of London for half a century", and that "it has been estimated that in the 1740s and 1750s there were 17,000 'gin-houses'." Fleet Street was an area known for its "violent delights" where "a 14-year-old boy, only 18 inches high, was to be seen in 1702 at a grocer's shop called the Eagle and Child by Shoe Lane." By the mid 19th century "London had become known as the greatest city on earth." By 1939 "one in five of the British population had become a Londoner."
. The Scottish Nation: 1700-2000
by T.M.Devine
The Scottish Nation examines the social, political, religious and economic factors that have shaped modern Scotland. Drawing on the latest research, Devine places Scotland firmly within an international context and provides a key focus for the ongoing debate regarding Scotland's future. This new edition brings the reader up-to-date with Scotland's recent history, from the high politics of the devolved parliament to the everyday effects of huge and growing levels of social inequality.
Ireland in the 20th Century
by Tim Pat Coogan
Ireland entered the twentieth century savaged by poverty and memories of the famine but inspired by the Celtic Dawn, a remarkable cultural renaissance led by Yeats, Synge and Lady Gregory. She left it in the era of the Celtic Tiger, with unparalleled prosperity and a new, confident, outward-looking view of herself and the world - although this prosperity and self-confidence is now giving way to uncertainty. In the intervening hundred years, Ireland has experienced more 'history' than almost any other country: beginning under the British crown, she was racked by revolution, the Anglo-Irish war, partition and civil conflict. Led by towering figures such as Michael Collins and De Valera, she has suffered terrible hardships and disputes but has nevertheless provided brilliant cultural and literary examples and is now a country of importance in the wider international community, providing leadership in a variety of moral and development issues. In this readable and authoritative study, Ireland's bestselling popular historian tells the extraordinary story of how contemporary Ireland came into existence. Covering both South and North and dealing with social and cultural history as well as political, this will surely become a definitive single-volume account of the making of modern Ireland.
Ireland, A Concise History
by Conor Cruise O'Brien
With its lively even-handed tone and hundreds of well-integrated photographs and illustrations, this book conveys the essence of Irish history and the Irish experience.
For the Love of Ireland: A Literary Companion
by Susan Cahill (ed.)
A rich anthology of writing about Ireland by such Irish luminaries as James Joyce, William Butler Yeats, Seamus Heaney, William, Trevor, Frank McCourt, Edna O'Brien, and Samuel Beckett. The well-chosen excerpts, organized by province, evoke in wonderful literary detail the geography of Ireland. Highly recommended for any traveler, the anthology is also a fine introduction to Irish literature.
Ireland and the Irish
by John Ardagh
impressionistic portrait of the two Irelands, based on interviews with leaders and ordinary people from every walk of life, includes their insights and the author's own observations and analysis. Anatomy of the country, this book is a most useful guide for the visitor wanting a complete picture of modern Irish life and the prevailing social and economic trends.
Scotland: A New History
by Michael Lynch
This full length history of Scotland is made up of 25 chapters spanning 18 centuries, from the Picts to the 1980s and is designed for the general reader. A particular feature of the book is the attention it gives to social and cultural history, including life in towns, the changing role of the nobles, and the shifting images of Scottish identity through the ages. The landmarks of Scottish history - the Wars of Independence, the Reformation, the Union of Crowns and the Union of Parliaments, the Jacobite rebellions, the Enlightenment and the Industrial Revolution, are all covered. The author is the editor of "The Innes Review", literary editor of the Scottish History Society and has written books on Edinburgh and the Reformation, Mary, Queen of Scots and the Scottish Burghs.
A Concise History of Ireland
by Marie O'Brien and Conor Cruise
Scotland: The Story of a Nation
by Magnus Magnusson
Walking Dublin
by Pat Liddy
A Short History of England
by Simon Jenkins
The definitive concise account of a nation's remarkable past
A History of the Scottish People
by T.C.Smout
A classic history of Scotland.

Click here to provide website feedback
Website Feedback