United Kingdom Crown Jewels: England, Wales and Scotland
$4,395 + Airfare
Jul 8 – Jul 20
9, 10, 11, 12
|Who can go on this trip?||
Students from around the world!
|Places we visit:||
London, Llanberis, Edinburgh, and Loch Ness
|Optional group flight there:||
New York (JFK) to London
|Optional group flight back:||
Edinburgh to New York (JFK)
Get ready for the ultimate UK experience! Our Crown Jewels trip will whisk you away to royal cities, fairytale castles, and breathtaking mountains. This trip is perfect for adventurous teens who want to combine outdoor adventure with exciting cities. You’ll ride the London Eye for stunning city views, shop the famous Camden Markets, live like a local while enjoying high tea, and catch an authentic Shakespeare play at the famous Globe Theater. In Wales get ready for adventure! You’ll go on a spectacular gorge scrambling journey while climbing, swimming and jumping through rock formations, enjoy a high ropes course, hike famous Mt. Snowdon, and visit the spectacular Penrhyn Castle! After our Welsh adventures we will head to Edinburgh to finish our trip with some Scottish charm. Climb Arthur’s seat, stroll the Royal Mile, try to spot the Loch Ness Monster and visit Edinburgh Castle and Holyrood Palace. You’ll even get to learn the ancient art of falconry!
On This Trip You Will:
- Ride the London Eye and cruise the Thames
- Enjoy high tea for an afternoon at St. Paul’s cathedral
- Experience Shakespeare’s world at the Globe Theatre
- Channel your inner Harry Potter at Platform 9 ¾
- Walk through Diagon Alley, the Great Hall and more at the Harry Potter filming studios*
- Delight in an evening at the theatre in London’s hip West End district
- Tour the back streets of London by night to learn about Jack the Ripper
- Go on a gorge scrambling adventure and climb through natural rock formations, swim in rock pools and jump your way down waterfalls in Snowdonia
- Work as a team to complete a high ropes course
- Hike mighty Mt. Snowdon, the tallest mountain in Wales
- Climb Arthur’s Seat for incredible views of Edinburgh
- Look out for Nessie on Loch Ness
- Go for a horseback ride through the rolling green hills of the Scottish countryside
- Learn the ancient art of hawking and falconry in Edinburgh
- Step back in time at Edinburgh Castle
- Feel like royalty at Holyrood Palace
*These are optional excursions.
DAY 1: GROUP FLIGHT DEPARTS FROM NEW YORK-JFK
DAYS 2-6: England – LONDON
Our trip begins in the vibrant and cosmopolitan city of London. Attend a play at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, and shop ‘til you drop in Camden Market with its hip and urban appeal. Explore some of the greatest museums in the world and walk in the steps of the Beatles at Abbey Road. Don’t forget to go for a spin on the London Eye, visit Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, and stop for high tea at St. Paul’s Cathedral! Learn about England’s gory history on our immensely popular Blood and Tears Walk, and go further back in time to learn about Royal England at the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, and Westminster Abbey.
DAYS 6-9: Wales – LLANBERIS
In Wales get ready for adventure! We’ll take a beautiful train ride from London along Wales’ northern coast to the mountain town of Llanberis in Snowdonia for fresh mountain air and beautiful scenery. Take a historical steam engine train all the way to the top of mighty Mt. Snowdon for amazing panoramic views. We will also go on a gorge scrambling adventure, where the scenery is so stunning you might think you are in Jurassic Park instead of Wales! Challenge yourself to complete a high ropes course, and of course eat at Llanberis’ most famous climbers café for the best food in town.
Day 9-13 Scotland – Edinburgh
Our trip continues onward to Edinburgh, known for being both one of the most haunted and culturally rich cities in the United Kingdom. Stroll the Royal Mile and see the best of Edinburgh’s royal history, including Holyroodhouse Palace, the Camera Obscura, and of course Edinburgh Castle! Climb to the top of Arthur’s Seat to see all the way to the sea, and go on a nighttime ghost walk to learn the spookier bits of Scottish history. During our time here we will head to a hawking center and experience the unique opportunity to learn the ancient art of flying falcons! You’ll discover how thrilling it is to hold a falcon on your arm and toss it off to soar through the sky. Plus, no trip to Scotland would be complete without a trip to the Highlands and Loch Ness. See if you can spot Nessie from our boat cruise, and explore majestic Urqhart Castle in Inverness. You’ll also have time to do a horseback riding excursion. We’ll conclude our time in Scotland with a fancy final dinner and reflect on this amazing trip throughout the United Kingdom.
Who can go on this trip? What kind of teen typically goes on this trip?
We have teens join this program from all over the world! They are typically culturally curious teens who are excited about making new friends, stepping out of their comfort zone, expanding their horizons, and trying something new.
Where do we stay?
Our hotels are specifically chosen to be in safe areas and well-suited to facilitating group supervision. We stay in centrally located accommodations, usually within walking distance of the main attractions. This means we do not use large, impersonal chain hotels on the outskirts of cities. We prefer to select smaller, family run hotels where we establish personal relationships with the owners.
Our London hotel is right in the heart of the city, right near two main train stations and dozens of wonderful restaurants and museums. Our accommodations at Llanberis will feel like your home away from home, as it is a cozy, recently-renovated guesthouse with a fireplace and wonderful lounge to relax. In Edinburgh our accommodations are just next to the Royal Mile, allowing us easy access to all of the best sights.
For safety reasons, we do not publish the names of the accommodations we use. We do not feel it is safe to publish the name of a hotel where a group of teenagers is staying abroad. After registering, participants and parents are given access to our secure parent website where you will be able to see the names of all of the accommodations for a trip.
Do most travelers go by themselves?
Yes, in fact over 75% of students who travel with us choose to come independently. This encourages teens to step further outside their comfort zone and make new friends. We believe that one of the most rewarding and exciting elements of travel is the new friendships that are formed along the way. If you travel by yourself, you are bound to make new friends from all over the country and even the world. The best part is, you can travel again with your new BFFs on another TFT trip the next summer!
Can I bring a friend?
Absolutely! We just ask that if you come with a friend, you and your friend(s) are still open to meeting new people and sharing this special experience with the entire group.
What do students generally like most on this program?
Students love that they are able to explore four of the United Kingdom’s most breathtaking regions while learning about the different cultures that can be found there, from the Scotch Gaelic to Welsh. The rolling green hills dotted with fluffy white sheep never hurt either!
What is unique about this program?
Between the adrenaline-pumping adventure component in Wales, a stop at Hadrian’s Wall, the chance to see the best London has to offer and finishing off the trip in gorgeous Edinburgh, this is one trip you won’t want to miss.
What is included?
Ground transportation, accommodations, all breakfasts and dinners, chaperones and guides, trip related activities, trip related activity admissions, taxes and tips.
Not included (not intended to be an exhaustive list): Airfare, rail passes, lunches, visas & visa application fees, beverages other than tap water, activities and admissions not referenced in the itinerary or deemed not trip related such as movies, clubs and the like, expenses incurred by the participant that are outside the trip description such as damage to hotels, excess baggage fees and the like, expenses related to unforeseen circumstances such as transportation strikes, natural disasters and the like, personal and medical expenses.
How do the optional group flights work?
Upon registration, you will be contacted by our International Logistics Team to discuss this trip’s flight details. You are not required to take the group flight, although there are several advantages to doing so. The group flight is chaperoned by TFT staff, it offers an opportunity for the students to get to know each other before the trip starts, and we get preferred group flight prices on trips that have group contracts (ask for details). Parents are responsible for arranging for participants to get to the group flight airport. Travel For Teens staff are at the airport, greet arriving participants, and help them get to where the rest of the group has assembled. For more information about Flights, visit our Flights page.
Who are the counselors on the trip?
The Trip Director for every trip is a seasoned teen travel professional with extensive TFT experience. Trip Directors often live or have lived and worked in the destination country. Extensive knowledge of the language and culture of the destination is crucial. Our Senior Counselors are experienced, responsible and fun-loving individuals who our participants can share experiences with and look to for guidance and support. At Travel for Teens we pride ourselves on our rigorous staff application process and the professionalism of our full time and summer staff.
It is the job of the counselors to keep the trip fun and exciting, the learning and the laughter in good balance, and to oversee the safety of the participants. Minimum ratios are on average one staff member to every seven participants. Trips may also include one or two Junior Counselors, who are college students with a history of TFT travel, and one or more Counselors in Training (CIT’s) with limited responsibility. CIT’s are not counted in staff-participant ratios.
What are the safety qualifications for our staff?
All of our staff members attend a week long training session every May to prepare for the upcoming summer and go over safety precautions and protocols. Likewise, every counselor is CPR/First Aid certified and Trip Directors are Lifeguard certified. All staff undergo a rigorous interview process and thorough background check.
What is the average group size?
Group size is important! A smaller group size provides unique opportunities that a large group cannot accommodate. Think of your favorite local restaurant; could it easily accommodate a group of 50 teens? Probably not! Our group sizes average between 14 to 21 students, which means that we are able to comfortably use local transport, enjoy local restaurants, and have a more authentic experience overall! A smaller group size also eliminates the likelihood of cliques, meaning that our groups all tend to bond as a cohesive unit. We guarantee that you’ll have enough people to meet some new best friends, but not so many that you feel like “just a number” or lost in a crowd.
How does this program connect to other programs?
Most of our Europe programs are designed specifically so that participants can combine them with other trips. If you are connecting to another program, your counselor will escort you to the airport on the last day of the trip and help you get to your next destination where you will meet up with your new counselors and group.
What is the food like on this trip?
In a word – Delicious! At TFT, we believe food should be an integral part of the travel experience and always make an effort to eat at authentic establishments when we can. What better way to immerse yourself in the culture of a place than by sampling the local delicacies, and we encourage students to do so whenever possible! Just as we stay away from Americanized hotel chains, we try to avoid restaurants with menus that cater only to tourists because every good traveler knows the best food is found wherever the locals are eating!
Even though a lot of food will look familiar to you, we encourage you to be adventurous, and step out of your comfort zone, try something new! Most British food will be similar to American food, although we will try fish and chips, meat pies, scones, and other local delicacies.
We also love to have picnics al fresco, and do this whenever possible, which is a great way to taste some local food while sitting out in the fresh air taking in the sights and sounds of our surroundings.
As always, we are willing and able to accommodate vegetarians, vegans, gluten allergies, and other dietary restrictions.
Do I need any vaccinations for this trip?
We recommend that you check with your family doctor regarding vaccinations and medical advice for the areas you will be visiting. For more information, please check out the World Health Organization’s website www.who.int/en/.
How much free time do we get?
Our counselors are with the group nearly always. Every day we will break up into smaller groups to give our participants some choices and flexibility in their itinerary. We do offer some free time to do some shopping, for example, in defined areas that we are very familiar with. If participants are ever shopping by themselves within these defined areas they go in groups and for no more than an hour. On this trip, the group will have some free time to explore some of the safe pedestrian areas of every city we go to. A counselor will always be nearby when participants have free time in each city.
What kind of visa do you need for this trip?
Any US citizen that enters Europe is automatically granted a free 90-day tourist visa. If you are coming from somewhere outside the US, please be sure to check your country specific visa requirements.
Do I need to speak Welsh or Gaelic?
No, everybody we meet will likely speak both English and the language of the region. Our skilled staff members will help you get around and even teach you a few fun phrases!