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Please Help Us Decide!

Hi All
My husband and I have taken 5 RS tours (GAS, Greece, Southern Italy, Paris and HOF, and Switzerland) and thoroughly enjoyed them all! We are currently looking at tour possibilities for 2019. Top 3 choices at this time are Best of England, Villages of Southern England, and Best of Ireland. We’ve looked at itineraries, read reviews, looked at scrapbooks, and are having trouble deciding which would be the best introduction to this part of Europe. We’d appreciate input from those of you who have taken one or more of these tours. Not sure if matters, but we plan to travel in May.

Posted by
23469 posts

OK -- I have decided for you. Put all three in hat and drew out Villages of Southern England.

Posted by
5059 posts

Have taken all three, all were great, and any of them will be a great introduction to that part of Europe. The ideal situation will be to take two of them back to back. The two in England would make the most sense logistically. If you can only do one, my suggestion would be the Best of England simply because it is a bit more varied.

Posted by
439 posts

Being the Irish girl that I am, Ireland is always the choice.

Posted by
6374 posts

The only one of those we've taken is Southern England, and it was great. I will say that one of my friends has taken two of the Ireland tours, and especially liked the longer Best of Ireland.

Posted by
1224 posts

I find them to be very different places even though they are so close geographically. Maybe because the Romans never made it into Ireland? I would go with either Best of England or Best of Ireland. Then take villages another time.

Posted by
996 posts

I have not taken any of those trips. Based on my own previous travels, I'd go with Best of Ireland first (Ireland was an amazing country!!) followed by Villages of Southern England (because I want to do that trip, too.)

Happy travels, whatever trip you pick!

Posted by
16 posts

Have taken Best of England and just got home from Best of Ireland. If you are keen on beautiful scenery, native folk music, I'd go for Ireland. If you are interested in politics and history, you will visit Derry and Belfast, see the murals and learn about the Troubles and be amazed at how the North is moving forward. You'll visit old ruins, but trip not heavy on churches and museums. Food was good to (most times) very good/great. Best of England also had some of those elements, and certainly there is plenty of history there, but the scenery in Ireland is stunning Disclaimer, yes, I have two Irish grandmothers. Of course, you could plan one this year and one next year. If you go to Ireland, leave time to go to the theater in Dublin (the Abbey is the national theater founded by WB Yeats), and take the Literary Pub Crawl (on your own).

Posted by
6 posts

Thanks everyone - especially nstone! This is exactly the kind of information we were looking for.

Posted by
399 posts



All the good stuff of England (except for tea with the Queen), plus the wonderful Irish people.

Posted by
1 posts

We did Ireland this summer! Our third Rick Steves tour. We then went on to Scotland on our own afterwards. Short 40 minute flight from Belfast to Glasgow. I felt so immersed in our Ireland tour. We were lucky to have Cathy for our guide. Our favorite guide thus far. Other 2 tours were Best of Italy and Eastern Europe. We have done much of Germany and the Czech Republic on our own and portions of Scandinavia. Very thorough itinerary and not too much bus time to get to locations. We spent 10 days in Scotland and followed much of Rick's itinerary except reversed itinerary and included Isle of Skye. I wish we had about 3 more days to feel like we really covered all we wanted though to explore more of the Aberdeen area and spend another day in Skye. Unfortunately, Isle of Skye is not feasible in a tour bus because of the small roads and think if we had taken the Scotland tour with RS we would have had to go back north on our own which is a lot of back tracking. I still think we will be back again some day. We have not done the other 2 tours you are looking at so can't say which is best but know we loved Ireland.


Posted by
11 posts

If you're not set on England for 2019, I recently met a woman who returned this past March from a R.S's Bulgaria tour, and she absolutely loved it. She said it was so beautiful, and there weren't the crowds one experiences in other locations. Just a thought for your future travels. Jane