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Literary Roads (3/9/18 - 3/17/18)


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Tour Details:

Departure City: Austin
Duration: 9 Days
Overnights: London 3, Stratford-Upon-Avon 2, Dublin 2

Cultural Connections:

Tower of London Opening Ceremony
Royal Shakespeare Company Workshop

Field Trips & Extensions:

Tower of London Opening Ceremony
Royal Shakespeare Company Workshop

Learning Objectives:

  • Following in the footsteps of writers from Shakespeare to J K Rowling, students will learn both why writers have wanted to work in London and it's role as a backdrop and an inspiration in so much significant work.
  • Students will gain a greater sense for Shakespeare and his works by visiting his birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon and attending a performance at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre.
  • Students will learn about the early production of text by viewing the Book of Kells at Trinity College Library.


This is a preliminary itinerary for your group.

Mar 9, 2018 Overnight Flight
Depart from the USA.
Mar 10, 2018 London
Welcome to London! Meet your tour manager and begin to explore the city's unique neighborhoods. You may want seek out some of the many whimsical literary statues around the city that honor everyone from Peter Pan to Paddington Bear to Sherlock Holmes. (D)
Mar 11, 2018 London
Take a guided sightseeing tour to view historic Trafalgar Square, the stately Houses of Parliament and beautiful Buckingham Palace. Then visit Westminster Abbey to see the famous Poets’ Corner in the south transept, which honors the likes of Geoffrey Chaucer, Lord Alfred Tennyson, Robert Browning and Rudyard Kipling. Later enjoy a guided walking tour of Charles Dickens’ London, which transports you back to the life and times of the beloved writer. Your first full day ends with a London treat: a traditional fish and chips dinner at one of our favorite shops. (B,D)
Mar 12, 2018 London
One highlight of the Tower of London is witnessing the opening ceremony, and we get there early before the crowds arrive to catch it with our famously boisterous Beefeater guide. Since its construction, the castle has been used as a treasury, palace and prison—today it houses 1,000 years of Royal history and the Crown Jewels. Then take a guided tour of the sprawling British Library, home to an astounding 150 million items including great literary treasures like the Magna Carta, a Gutenberg Bible, original Beatles lyrics and Shakespeare’s First Folio. After, we’ll pop over to King’s Cross Station to see if we can find Platform 9 ¾ and catch any students headed off to Hogwarts. Tonight perhaps take a stroll out to see the bright lights of Theatreland in the West End. (B,D)
Mar 13, 2018 Stratford-Upon-Avon
Grab your wand and cape before departing London for a tour of the Warner Bros. Harry Potter studio, which provides a behind-the-scenes look at how the movies, based on author J.K. Rowling’s books about the young orphaned wizard, were made, from detailed sets to animatronics. Then academia gets its turn as you explore Oxford, including a tour of Christchurch College, where Lewis Carroll penned Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and also where many memorable scenes from the Harry Potter movies were filmed (note the Great Hall, the inspiration for Hogwarts Hall). Today’s final destination is Stratford-upon-Avon, home of another much-adored writer—a fellow by the name of William Shakespeare. (B,D)
Mar 14, 2018 Stratford-Upon-Avon
Start with reverent visits to Shakespeare’s Birthplace and his burial site at Holy Trinity Church. Later today participate in a Royal Shakespeare Company workshop, where you’ll actively explore how the company interprets the Bard’s words and brings them to life. Afterward enjoy a performance by the renowned company. Bravo! (B,D)
Mar 15, 2018 Dublin
Depart on a scenic drive to North Wales, where you visit imposing, centuries-old Conwy Castle. From there, travel to Holyhead and board a ferry that takes you across the Irish Sea to Dublin, the capital of Ireland and home to many famous authors. (B,D)
Mar 16, 2018 Dublin
A guided morning sightseeing tour shows you O’Connell Street, the city’s grand main thoroughfare, Ha’penny Bridge, a charming cast-iron pedestrian walkway over the River Liffey, and the favorite haunts of celebrated literary figures like James Joyce, William Butler Yeats, Oscar Wilde and other notable Dublin writers. Entrance to St. Patrick's Cathedral is also included. Then visit the vaunted Trinity College Library, the country’s largest. There you’ll marvel at the lavishly decorated Book of Kells, a religious manuscript created centuries ago by Celtic monks. Later explore more of the city on your own, perhaps visiting the Dublin Writers Museum, which honors the men and women of letters who burnished the city’s literary reputation or the National Library, which houses a massive Yeats collection. Tonight’s highlight is an evening play performance at one of the city’s top venues, such as the Gate Theatre or the Abbey Theatre—a fantastic way to cap off a dramatic week. (B,D)
Mar 17, 2018 Departure
Depart for the USA. (B)
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Tour Cost:

Cost Per Traveler: $3,815


Cost breakdown
Program Fee: $3,835
Early Registration Discount: -$100
Weekend Surcharge: $80
Total Group Fees 1:
1 Valid through 11/1/17 with deposit of $495

Additional Fees (as applicable)
Adult Surcharge: $95
Single Room Supplement: $665
Double Room Supplement: $315
Ultimate Protection Plan: $270
Comprehensive Protection Plan: $225

Full Payment Deadline: 12/1/17

What to See


Portobello Road, Tube: Notting Hill Gate or Ladbroke Grove
For over 300 years, Portobello Road has been attracting tourists and natives alike to its varied markets. Throughout the week, Pembridge Villa sells high quality antiques at high prices, and on Saturdays the North end of Portobello Road offers more in the way of bargains, curios, and second-hand clothes.

Leadenhall, Tube: Bank or Monument
Originating in the 14th Century, the first building was destroyed by the Great Fire of London in 1666. Erected in 1881, the present victorian covered arcade retails meat, fish, flowers and foodstuffs. Fresh coffee from all over the world gives Leadenhall a delightful aroma. Open Monday through Friday.

Lillywhite's, Tube: Piccadilly Circus
This store claims to be the world's finest in sporting goods: from croquet mallets to football strips and cricket whites; it all can be found here! Open daily.

Hamley's, Tube: Piccadilly Circus, Oxford Circus
A short walk up Regent Street will bring you to London's finest toy store and, at one time, the largest. Five stories of toys, games, stuffed animals and many opportunities for fun! Don't forget to admire the window displays. Open daily.

Oxford Street Shopping, Tube: Oxford Circus
Shop here to stay caught up with all the latest fashions in clothes and shoes. Oxford Street is best known for Marks & Spencer, Selfridges and the other big department stores which are all found in the section from Marble Arch to Oxford Circus.


Grafton Street
It's no more than 200 yards long and about 20 feet wide, but brick-lined Grafton Street, open only to pedestrians, can claim to be the most humming street in the city, if not in all of Ireland.

The Blackrock Market
With over 50 shops specializing in clothing, gifts, art and curiousities, the Blackrock Market is one of the most popular shopping destinations amongst visitors and locals too.  Housed in a 250 year old Georgian house and located in the elegant Blackrock village in South Dublin, one can go for simply for the sights, if not the shopping.

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British Museum, Tube: Tottenham Court Road
One of the world's finest museums: "the closest thing this planet has to a complete record of its civilizations." The Rosetta Stone, the Elgin Marbles and an incredible collection of coins. Open daily. Free admission.

Victoria and Albert Museum, Tube: South Kensington
A collection of fine and applied arts from all over the world are displayed here. Particularly noted for the clothing collection and the twentieth century design exhibits. Open daily. Free admission.

Natural History Museum, Tube: South Kensington
This museum illustrates all forms of life, from the smallest bacteria to the largest creatures, dinosaurs, and fossils. Open daily. Free admission.

The Science Museum, Tube: South Kensington
Over seven acres of hands-on scientific history. Also includes a history of medicine and an IMAX 3D film theater. Along with the National Railway Museum in York and the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television in Bradford, these museums together comprise the National Museum of Science & Industry ( NMSI ). Open daily, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Free admission.

The Museum of London, Tube: St. Paul's or Barbican
From pre-history to the present day, the growth of London is charted here. A museum with something for everyone. Open daily. Free admission.

London Transport Museum, Tube: Covent Garden
For those interested in transportation throughout the ages, here is a fabulous collection of buses, trams, trains, and their history. The museum boasts hands-on fun for all ages and a lovely shop with lots of Tube-related merchandise. Open daily.

Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, Tube: Baker Street
Madame Tussaud started in wax modeling making masks of victims of the French Revolution, and in 1835 she moved to England to this location. Be prepared for the Chamber of Horrors! Open daily.

The National Gallery, Tube: Charing Cross
A wealth of art from the early Renaissance to the nineteenth century is catalogued and beautifully displayed here. Spanning the period from about 1250 to 1900, it is one of the greatest collections of European painting in the world. Open daily. Free admission.

National Portrait Gallery, Tube: Charing Cross
This gallery houses a collection of portraits that well illustrate the history of Britain. The Great and the Good, along with some for whom the jury is still out, are represented here. Open daily. Free admission.

Tate Britain, Tube: Pimlico
This is the national gallery of British art with works from 1500 to the present day. Tate holds the greatest collection of British art in the world, including works by Blake, Hirst and Moore. Open daily, 10 a.m. to 5:50 p.m. Free admission.

Tate Modern, Tube: Southwark
This museum displays the Tate's collection of international modern art from 1900 to the present day, including major works by Bacon, Dalí, Picasso, Matisse, Rothko, Warhol and McQueen. Open daily. Free admission.

Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum, Tube: Wimbledon
Newly opened in 2006, the Lawn Tennis Museum features some incredible new technology in order to immerse the visitor in the world of Wimbledon.  There is a 200° cinema that screens a film about the science and biology of tennis, as well as a recreation of the 1980s dressing room where a projected image of John McEnroe gives you a tour.  Open daily.


Dublin Theatre
Dublin is home to a thriving theater scene. Venues include the Gate Theatre, the Rupert Guinness Theatre, and the Abbey and Peacock Theatres, home of Ireland's National Theatre Society.

Kilmainham Gaol, Inchicore Road
Restored in the 1960s, this building stood as a prison for 130 years and served as the holding place for many of the Nationalists that were executed after the Uprising of 1916. Tours include an audio-visual component. Open daily.

National Museum, Kildare Street
Built in the 1880s to the Victorian Palladianism design of Sir Thomas Deane, the museum houses priceless items such as Ireland’s Bronze Age gold, silver and glassware as well as unique items including 16th and 17th century wollen garments recovered from Irish bogs. Open daily, closed on Monday.

National Gallery, Merrion Square West
Houses a collection of more than 2,000 works from every major European school of painting, with particular emphasis on Irish landscape and portraits. Admission to the permanent collection is free. Open daily.

Dublinia, St. Michael's Hill, Christ Church
Presents a multimedia offering of Dublin’s medieval heritage from the arrival of the Anglo-Normans to the closures of the monasteries in 1540. Formerly the Synod Hall of the Church of Ireland, the impressive building was designed by G. E. Street. Open daily.

Chester Beatty Library
A connoisseur's delight, this "library" is considered by many to be the most impressive museum in Ireland. After Sir Alfred Chester Beatty (1875-1968), a Canadian mining millionaire and a collector with a flawless eye, assembled one of the most significant collections of Islamic and Far Eastern art in the Western world, he donated it to Ireland.

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Changing of the Guard, Tube: Green Park
Most famously at Buckingham Palace along with a few other locations, this is a hugely popular tradition of pageantry.  Occurs daily or on alternate days depending on the time of year.

Regent's Park, Tube: Regent's Park
The Park is London's largest outdoor sports area with pitches and courts for a variety of athletic activities. It also boasts the London Zoo, an Open Air Theater, cafés, picnic spots and the renowned Queen Mary Gardens and Rose Gardens.

Camden Lock & Passage, Tube: Camden Town
The Passage offers a selection of antiques, while Camden Lock is the weekend haunt of London's trendy youth. Clothes, shoes, records and a mouthwatering variety of foods can be found here.

Knightsbridge, Tube: Knightsbridge
Home to some of London's most expensive shops. Here, you will find Harrods and Harvey Nichols as well as nearby Sloane Street's Chanel, Hermes, and Gucci.

Piccadilly, Tube: Piccadilly Circus
While on Piccadilly take the opportunity to visit covered arcades on either side of the street, offering expensive purchases. Admire the statue of Eros and stroll to Fortnum and Mason as it is the ultimate place to shop for luxury foodstuffs and is a wonderful shopping experience.


Merrion Square
Created between 1762 and 1764, this tranquil square a few blocks east of St. Stephen's Green is lined on three sides by some of Dublin's best-preserved Georgian town houses, many of which have brightly painted front doors crowned by intricate fanlights.

St. Patrick's Cathedral
The largest cathedral in Dublin and also the national cathedral of the Church of Ireland, St. Patrick's is the second of the capital's two Protestant cathedrals.

St. Stephen's Green
Dubliners call it simply Stephen's Green, and green it is (year-round) -- a verdant, 27-acre Southside square that was used for the public punishment of criminals until 1664.

Trinity College
Founded in 1592 by Queen Elizabeth I to "civilize" (Her Majesty's word) Dublin, Trinity is Ireland's oldest and most famous college.

Christ Church Cathedral, Christ Church Place
Work on the present building at Christ Church began in 1169 under the direction of the Norman knight, Strongbow. The crypt below the cathedral is one of the largest in the British Isles and is thought to be Dublin’s oldest surviving building. Open daily. (During services, access is limited.)

For Those of Drinking Age
Literary Pub Crawl, The Duke Pub, 9 Duke street
Professional actors lead this tour, performing from the works of Ireland’s great writers while visiting Dublin’s best known literary haunts. Open daily in the summer, Thursday through Sunday in the winter.

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Harry Ramsden's, Euston Station Foodcourt
World famous fish and chips.

Hard Rock Café, 150 Old Park Lane
Full of rock 'n' roll memorabilia and serving tasty, casual fare like the 10 oz. BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger, this is the Hard Rock Caf
é that started it all. See the first donation, Eric Clapton's Lead II Fender, and derive inspiration from viewing John Lennon's hand amended lyrics to 'Imagine,' among many other items, in the Vault.


Café Carlo, 63-64 O'Connell Street
Across from the famous Dublin Spire, Café Carlo is a wonderful eatery that offers a mix of Irish and Italian cuisine. This is a favorite spot amongst locals and visitors for its relaxed and intimate atmosphere.

The Green Bistro, Pearse Street
This bistro prides itself in the quality of its food, so it only uses the freshest of local ingredients. Known for its mouth-watering steaks and burgers, they only use prime Irish beef in their meals.  The bistro is located in the Holiday Inn in Dublin Center and also has 24 hour room service. This makes it an excellent place to dine before going up to your room accomodation.

Trocadero, 3 St. Andrew Street
"The Troc," as it's called is over a half century old and is known for its excellent pre-theater menu. Because the Troc is within walking distance of the Olympia Theatre, The Gaiety and Andrew's Lane Theatre, it is a popular place to have a traditional Irish dinner before heading out to see a show.

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Map may not reflect your final trip itinerary.

What's Included

  • Round-Trip Flights
  • Daily Breakfast and Dinner (unless otherwise noted)
  • Centrally Located Hotels
  • 24-Hour Tour Manager
  • London Tour with Guide
  • Westminster Abbey
  • Charles Dickens' London Guided Walking Tour
  • Tower of London with Opening Ceremony
  • British Library with Guide
  • Harry Potter Studio Tour
  • Christchurch College
  • Shakespeare's Birthplace
  • Holy Trinity Church
  • Royal Shakespeare Company Workshop
  • Royal Shakespeare Company Theater Performance
  • Conwy Castle
  • Dublin Tour with Guide
  • Trinity College Library
  • St. Patrick's Cathedral
  • Dublin Theater Performance

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