The British Isles, so much to see and do. Yet, each year, millions of people decide to head off to sunnier climes for their annual summer holidays. The tempting notion of going to lie on a beach in a sun drenched oasis may sound like paradise for many but for those who enjoy cruises, what about the idea of cruising closer to home. What about a cruise around the British Isles? A cruise-staytion if you will. Although we can’t guarantee you wall to wall sunshine but surely this is a great combination of enjoying life on board a cruise ship whilst exploring areas of the country that you haven’t visited before.
We’ve done it a few times now and it’s a brilliant way to see Scotland, England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Sometimes it pays to stay closer to home and enjoy the delights of what our home nations have to offer.
So, we’ve decided to compile a top 3 selection of cruise ports of call around the British Isles. Let’s take a look:
3: Cobh, Ireland:
Formerly known as Queenstown, this was the last port of call for the ill fated Titanic in 1912. Don’t let that put you off though. The little town on the south coast of Ireland is a real gem of a place. Picture postcard best describes the town with quaint brightly coloured houses and winding streets and very friendly locals, you are always made to feel welcome. You will also find the memorial for the Lusitania Tragedy which occured in 1915. There is also the rather impressive St Colmans Cathedral. Opened in 1911, it took 47 years to construct and has some fantastic views across the town. If you want to explore further afield. there is the railway station right next to where the cruise ships dock. From here, you can travel to Cork and explore what the city has to offer.
2: Liverpool, England:
From the Beatles to a city of two football clubs, Liverpool is a city full of culture, history and charm. A dedicated working class background, Liverpool is famed throughout the world as one of the friendliest places you can visit. Take the ‘Ferry across the Mersey’ and take in the views of the city from the water. Take a walk to the Cavern Club, where the Beatles famously were formed or make a visit to the UK’s biggest Cathedral, Liverpool Anglican Cathedral from where you can enjoy some fabulous views across the city, 500ft above sea level. For those with a nautical interest, not far from the cruise berth, there is the Cunard Building. Part of the Three Graces, The Royal Liver Building and the former offices of the Mersey Docks and Harbour Board making up the other two, the Cunard Building was Cunard’s headquarters in the UK from 1917 until they moved to Southampton in the 1960s. Liverpool is still considered the spiritual home of Cunard and has since had visits from Cunard’s current ships, culminating in a special visit by all three Queens in May 2015.
1: Edinburgh, Scotland.
The capital of Scotland, Edinburgh is strategically situated on the east coast from where transport links with the rest of the country are in plenty of supply. A cosmopolitan city, visitors will not be bored as there is plenty of things to see and do in the historic city. Take a visit to Edinburgh Castle and marvel at the wonderous views across the city and listen to the One O’Clock gun as it echos around the city. Take a trip to Holyrood Castle, the Edinburgh residence of HM the Queen. From here, you can walk back into history and see where Mary Queen of Scots Italian lover, David Rizzio was violently murdered by her husband Lord Darnley and his associates. In Leith you can visit the former Royal Yacht, Britannia. Step aboard and see what life was like on board when the ship was in Royal Commission. If you want to go further afield, Glasgow, Stirling, Falkirk and Dunfermline are all in close proximity to Edinburgh.
Other ports notable of mention:
Belfast Northern Ireland.
We think the British Isles has so much to offer and one of the best ways to say it is by cruising. So perhaps the next time you are considering a cruise, why not consider a British Isles. You won’t regret it! (Well, perhaps the weather maybe lol)