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London and Edinburgh Itinerary - Help!

I'm planning on taking an RS tour of Scotland next summer. Before that, while I'm on that side of the pond, I'd thought I'd go back to London to see, do and taste some of the things I didn't the first time around, like a Bath daytrip. I was then planning on taking the train north and stopping in York. But I'm running into scheduling conflicts. I'll be there at the time of the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, but I have to arrive a few days early to go, since there are no shows on Sundays and the tour starts on a Monday. But that doesn't really leave me with enough time to do both Bath and York, especially since I'd really like to see the Yorkshire Moors. I'm a nature lover. Are they really worth seeing? Or should I choose to only do Bath this time around and have a more leisurely trip before my RS tour? If I do it all, except the Moors, this is what my itinerary looks like: Day 1 - arrive London midday, afternoon high tea, Night Photography tour Day 2 - London Tower, Westminster, London Eye and theater Day 3 - Bath daytrip (although Day 4 coincides with London Walks excursion to Bath...) Day 4 - London foodie and markets tour, early afternoon train to York, evening city walking tour of York Day 5 - Visit York (Castle, Minster, museum(s)) Day 6 - early train to Edinburgh, Old & New Town foodie tour, Edinburgh Military Tattoo Day 7 - resting, laundry and taking in Edinburgh Fringe Festival performance(s) Day 8 - Edinburgh TBD, start of tour in late afternoon Days 9-16 - RS Scotland tour
Day 17 - Fly home What do you think? And thanks in advance!

Posted by
30150 posts

Julie, That's somewhat of a "busy" Itinerary, but it looks feasible. With the Military Tattoo, I'd recommend booking early, double-checking the details printed on your ticket when you receive it and arriving early. Be sure to take a sweater or coat, as I've found that even in August it can get chilly in the stands (or it could rain). Happy travels!

Posted by
2271 posts

Your schedule already includes Bath and York, as you have written it out. So, you know you are not going to be seeing the Yorkshire Moors this trip. You can leave it for your next trip to Britain. The other option, to speak the obvious, is to drop Bath from your schedule and add a day or two in the Yorkshire Moors. Many people here find that they just have to leave a city or a sight out this trip, and save it for their next trip. Now you will get lots of folks here chiming in to say "Do not miss Bath! It's great." Which it is. And the rest will chime in to say "Bath was only so-so for me. Drop it and add more of Yorkshire." So you will find two schools of thought here. I cannot tell you what you should do, as it is your choice. But I will say, you could leave Bath for your next trip. It is kind of out of the way for this trip. You have the London--York--Edinburgh thing going on.

Posted by
962 posts

The schedule seems pretty packed, but doable. Just don't miss a train. Bath vs York? Look at photos and decide if you'd rather spend time in a modern city center built into Georgian buildings (Bath) or a modern city center built into considerably older buildings. The Moors would tip me to Yorkshire, though, if I could swing it.

Posted by
56 posts

I think your making a slight mistake (sorry) in thinking going to Edinburgh is seeing Scotland. I think this is akin to American tourists thinking they have seen the UK and just visiting London...err London is nothing absolutely nothing like the rest of the UK just like Edinburgh is nothing absolutely nothing like the Highlands of Scotland. To see Scotland you really need to go up to the North West Coast ..trust me you will fall in love...look up/ google Inverpolly nature reserve and also the summer Isles that is Scotland that no one sees yet it is the real unchanged unspoilt hidden Scotland and the best part you wont see American tourists here as they don't know about it only we do! As for the rest of the UK yes definitely see York its a beautiful walled city, its medieval centre is lovely and full of history have tea in Bettys tea shop and see the inscriptions made by allied (including US) air crew who (some) never returned from their missions in WW2. See York minster and even the railway museum there is probably the best in the world. Have a pint in the haunted pub the golden fleece....

Posted by
5 posts

Thank you very much everyone for your tips! The dates Tattoo tickets are flagged on all my PCs. I'll also be sure to bring a sweater and am keeping my fingers crossed I won't need a raincoat. Thanks, Ken! Rebecca, this is actually a really rough version of my schedule, though I know from past experiences with RS tours that nothing group-y usually happens the last morning as people are usually heading off elsewhere or sleeping in. As for Bath vs. York, I think I was hoping that someone would pipe in with THE reason to do one or the other. I've been doing my own reading and planning, and I'm thinking I may stay North this trip, doing York as well as possible, along with Durham and Hadrian's Wall. Bath will still be there my next trip, whenever that is, and I still have to see Wales, which is sorta kinda in that corner of the UK. And J.C., yeah, I really want to see the Moors. And now there are Dales too? I need to do some more research... John, totally agree with you! Which is why I'm doing a Rick Steves tour of Scotland from Days 9-16. There's not much to plan or research for those days, which is why it's not laid out day by day on my itinerary. Thanks for the York tips, they're in my notes, along with the Scotland tips. Maybe the next trip? And now to research the North of England...

Posted by
2271 posts

"As for Bath vs. York, I think I was hoping that someone would pipe in with THE reason to do one or the other. I've been doing my own reading and planning, and I'm thinking I may stay North this trip, doing York as well as possible, along with Durham and Hadrian's Wall. Bath will still be there my next trip, whenever that is, and I still have to see Wales, which is sorta kinda in that corner of the UK." I think you've come up with a good plan. If I had to choose between Bath and York this trip, it would definitely be York. Here are the reasons: 1. York Minster; fabulous. 2. Medieval walls surrounding the old city; you can walk the walls and get a great view of the old city. 3. The street "The Shambles" looks much as it did in medieval times, with a few great tea shops and coffee shops added. 4. York is right on your way to every place else you're going. I think that is THE reason to pick York. Bath is out of the way for this trip, as you've already discovered. Yes, if you leave it for next time, you can include a trip to Wales. That's a good plan. You mentioned seeing Hadrian's Wall this trip; a good idea. That will give you a look at the scenery similar to the Yorkshire Moors scenery. Look at using the Hadrian's Wall Bus which travels along near the wall. You can get off anytime you wish, visit a section of the wall, and hop back on the bus, going either east or west. http://www.visithadrianswall.co.uk/hadrians-wall-country/ad122-hadrians-wall-country-bus Congratulations, you've come up with a really good plan. Have a great trip!