British Isles & Ireland

British Isles and Ireland

The British Isles includes the landmasses of Great Britain and Ireland as well as more than 6,000 smaller islands, many of which can only be visited on a cruise.

Whether you're drawn to the royal heritage of England, Scotland's Highlands and islands, the rugged landscapes of Wales or the historic towns and cities of Ireland, cruise holidays showcase the best features of these hugely influential islands as well as lesser-visited destinations.

Most cruises of the British Isles depart from London or Southampton and call at ports in modern cities and quaint harbour towns around the coast, and noteworthy islands including the Shetlands, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Mann.

Destinations

England
England's blend of old and new appeals to visitors from all over the world, enchanted by its royal palaces, medieval castles and ancient curiosities like Stonehenge.England isn't only remarkable for its history though. A cruise around the country's extensive coastline and along its winding rivers will reveal the natural beauty of this green and pretty land that has inspired generations of poets and artists.Cruises visit all of England's major and minor ports, including the famous Port of Southampton from which the Titanic and other early transatlantic voyages departed, the maritime cities of Liverpool and Newcastle, and scenic Dover, the gateway to France and the Channel Islands.
Wales
Just hours from London, Wales retains a character distinctive from the rest of Britain and has always been a popular countryside escape with its rolling hills and valleys, majestic mountains and sandy coasts.Cruises stop at 6 long-established ports in Wales, including Holyhead on the island of Anglesey in North Wales, Fishguard and Milford Haven in rural Pembrokeshire and Cardiff, Newport and Swansea on the Bristol Channel.Each region has its unique charms, whether you're interested in visiting traditional villages and hearing the Welsh language or you're drawn to the cultural attractions and shopping opportunities of the big cities.
Scotland
From Highland peaks to deep lochs, Scotland boasts the most dramatic landscapes in Britain, along with many of its best preserved heritage sites and most dynamic cities.Travel between the major cities of Edinburgh in the east, Glasgow in the west and Inverness in the north to get a taste of each region's distinctive character, and enter the Highlands on a tour of magnificent lochs, crumbling castles and misty mountains.Get the most from your Caledonian cruise by visiting Scotland's unspoilt islands, from Skye to Orkney, and experience one of the world's most underrated cruise destinations.
Ireland
Ireland's cultural ambassadors have long spread the word of their country's legendary hospitality, idyllic countryside and fascinating history. Explore the charms of the region for yourself on a cruise holiday of Ireland and Northern Ireland.Cities like Dublin and Galway are steeped in history, with medieval streets and old world architecture. Belfast in Northern Ireland is remarkable for different reasons, having shaken off its violent past and built a strong reputation as one of Europe's cultural capitals.Head out of the cities to explore the beauty of Ireland's countryside that inspired generations of writers, and discover why it’s dubbed the Emerald Isle.

Ireland

7 night cruise sailing from Southampton aboard the Oriana.
Departs 25 Aug 2017
from
$ 1189*
per person twin share

Germany, UK, Ireland

10 night cruise sailing from Hamburg aboard the MSC Preziosa.
Departs 24 Aug 2017
from
$ 1879*
per person twin share

Scotland, Ireland and Guernsey

12 night cruise sailing from Southampton aboard the Oriana.
Departs 30 Jul 2017
from
$ 1909*
per person twin share

British Isles

12 night cruise sailing from Amsterdam aboard the Vision of the Seas.
Departs 22 May 2017
from
$ 1997*
per person twin share

British Isles - Roundtrip Southampton

12 night cruise sailing from Southampton aboard the Caribbean Princess.
Departs 01 May 2017
from
$ 2029*
per person twin share

British Isles (with dublin overnight)

12 night cruise sailing from Southampton aboard the Caribbean Princess.
Departs 13 May 2017
from
$ 2199*
per person twin share

British Isles - Roundtrip Southampton

12 night cruise sailing from Southampton aboard the Caribbean Princess.
Departs 25 May 2017
from
$ 2199*
per person twin share

Ireland & Scotland (with optional Military Tattoo)

8 night cruise sailing from Dover aboard the Pacific Princess.
Departs 20 Aug 2017
from
$ 2229*
per person twin share

Ireland & Scotland (with optional Military Tattoo)

8 night cruise sailing from Dover aboard the Pacific Princess.
Departs 12 Aug 2017
from
$ 2259*
per person twin share

British Isles - Roundtrip Southampton

12 night cruise sailing from Southampton aboard the Caribbean Princess.
Departs 18 Jun 2017
from
$ 2299*
per person twin share

British Isles

12 night cruise sailing from Southampton aboard the Caribbean Princess.
Departs 06 Jun 2017
from
$ 2299*
per person twin share

British Isles (with dublin overnight)

12 night cruise sailing from Southampton aboard the Caribbean Princess.
Departs 30 Jun 2017
from
$ 2399*
per person twin share

Destination Overview

A main drawcard of the British Isles is its rich history. From prehistoric monuments and Norman castles to royal palaces and modern engineering, the stories of the region can be discovered at world-leading museums and preserved heritage attractions.

  • Currency - England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland use British Pound Sterling (GBP). Coins come in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50-pence (cent) and 1 and 2-pound denominations. Notes come in 5, 10, 20 and 50-pound denominations.
    The Republic of Ireland uses the Euro (EUR). Coins come in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50-cent and 1 and 2-euro denominations. Notes come in denominations of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500.
  • Population - the British Isles are home to 68 million people, with 80 per cent living in England. The most densely populated region, Greater London has 9 million inhabitants.
  • Language - English is the most widely spoken language and the official language of England, Scotland and Wales (alongside Welsh in the latter). Irish is the official language of Ireland, though English is much more widely used, especially in Northern Ireland.
  • Time Zone - the UK and Ireland use Universal Coordinated Time (UTC±0), also known as Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). The time zone advances 1 hour to UTC+1 between March and October for British Summer Time.
     

Who goes there?

Local and international cruise lines operate routes around the British Isles stopping at major ports, and combine key destinations in Britain and Ireland with cruises of Western and Northern Europe.

Major cruise lines that operate in the region include Celebrity Cruises, Cunard, P&O Cruises, Silversea, Swan Hellenic and Voyages of Discovery.
 

Best time to go?

High season for cruises of the British Isles is between late spring and early autumn, with most cruise lines operating from April to October. The colder temperatures and unpredictable weather of the winter season means few cruises operate in these months, with the exception of dedicated Christmas-themed cruises.
 

Highlights

  • Ireland - the Emerald Isle combines spectacular nature with charming cities and world-renowned cheer. Visit the cultural attractions of Dublin, Cork and Northern Ireland's Belfast and discover the island's natural beauty, from the awe-inspiring Cliffs of Moher to the rocky steps of the Giant's Causeway.
  • Scotland - with its Highland scenery and more than 790 islands, Scotland offers the chance to escape the bustle while still being close to some of the UK's biggest cities. Historic Edinburgh and Glasgow are rich in culture, the former drawing millions of international visitors each summer to the world's biggest arts festival.
  • England - most cruises of England begin at coastal ports or set off from the River Thames in the heart of Central London. Leaving the capital behind, you'll see a more laid-back and pastoral side of England, stopping off in picturesque seaside towns and off-shore favourites such as the Isles of Scilly.
  • Channel Islands - many British Isles cruises include a visit to the Channel Islands of Jersey and Guernsey to experience the unique continental charms of these islands off the French coast. See why Guernsey's St. Peter Port is admired as one of the most attractive ports in Europe, and visit unspoilt Sark where the horse-drawn carriage is the primary means of transport.
     
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