Bridie’s Irish Faire will offer three custom-guided tours in 2020; destinations include England, Scotland, Ireland, Northern Ireland and Italy.
“Tea & Sympathy: A Women’s Tour of England” is Bridie’s 17th small group tour and includes visits to Oxford, Stratford-Upon-Avon, Bath and London. The variety in this May 2020 tour’s itinerary includes visits to sites from the Neolithic period and Medieval times; lunch at the 400-year-old Turf Tavern in Oxford and afternoon tea at the ancient Pump Room of the Roman Baths. There are castle and garden visits such as Blenheim Palace (the ancestral home of Winston Churchill), Berkeley Castle, and the Bishops Palace and Gardens, and to the birthplace of William Shakespeare.
To round out the tour, the group will enjoy a single gauge steam train ride through the Cotswolds region, with the final leg taking place in London, including visits to Windsor Castle, Westminster Abbey and The Tower with a farewell dinner and the option for an additional two-night stay.
“Itinerary planning is definitely the very best part of my day,” said Susan Spencer, owner and tour coordinator at Bridie’s Irish Faire in Nye Beach. “I take such pleasure in creating all the colorful itineraries, however, I rely on travel professionals in each country to handle the administrative details, including the services of professional drivers and guides on every tour.”
In September, the “Thistle & Shamrock Tour” departs for visits to three countries — Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. This tour begins in Edinburgh with visits to St. Giles Cathedral, the Glenkinchie Distillery, Rosslyn Chapel (of DaVinci Code fame), Stirling Castle, Caerlaverock Castle, Dundrennan Abbey and Abbottsford House, the former home of Sir Walter Scott. The group will then transfer to Belfast, Northern Ireland, via ferry boat, where destinations include the scenic Glens of Antrim, the Giant’s Causeway, and Bushmills Distillery. The Republic of Ireland visits include the Hill of Tara (crowning place of the ancient kings of Ireland), Glendalough (the 6th century monastic site of St. Kevin), the National Museum of Ireland at the Collins Barracks and the Guinness Storehouse. farewell to Ireland takes place at the Irish House Party, an evening of entertainment that includes music, dance, and dinner.
“Over the years, I’ve had so many requests for a tour that includes both Scotland and Ireland, however, flying into Edinburgh and out of Dublin was logistically tricky to put together. I’ve finally created an itinerary I love, that includes all three countries,” said Spencer.
“Ciao Italia,” Bridie’s third tour for 2020, departs in October. This tour includes visits to Venice, Siena, Florence, Tuscany and Rome. A local guide will conduct walking tours in each city, followed by a combination of planned visits and free time to explore.
Visits in Venice include the Doges Palace, the Bridge of Sighs, Piazza and Basilica San Marco and a glassblowing demonstration. In Siena, there’s a walking tour of the traditional Contrade neighborhoods, and the group will enjoy wine tasting in Tuscany. Florence attractions include the Piazza del Duomo, the Gates of Paradise, and Ponte Vecchio. Rome is the final city on this tour, where visits include the Trevi Fountain, the Colosseum and an optional tour of the Vatican, including St. Peter’s Basilica, and the Sistine Chapel.
Bridie’s custom tours average 26 people and include land transportation by luxury coach with professional driver, 4-star hotels, full breakfast daily, and prepaid admission to all attractions in the price of the tour. Some lunches, evening meals, and entertainment are also included. For full tour pricing details and itinerary information visit the tour tab on at www.bridiesirishfaire.com.
For more detailed information or to register for one of Bridie’s tours, visit Spencer at Bridie’s Irish Faire, 715 NW Third St., Newport, or call the shop 541-574-9366.