A cruise to the British Isles can take you to destinations with illustrious pasts and contemporary significance. Britain’s largest city, London, offers a combination of traditional and modern attractions for visitors interested in everything from royal politics to international cuisine. Catch a show in the West End or experience a more intimate performance at a pub theater. Pay homage to England’s most famous playwright on a tour of Shakespeare’s Globe. For artists, there is Trafalgar Square’s National Gallery, with paintings from masters like Leonardo da Vinci and Van Gogh. For contemporary tastes there’s Tate Modern, housed in a former power station. London’s heritage can be explored in its various ethnic neighborhoods: Consider a trip to Brixton to browse the extensive Caribbean food market; peruse the colorful fabrics on Green Street or grab a bite at an Indian cafe in Southall.
Take to the streets in Dublin and wander among the Georgian buildings. Investigate the Irish Parliament and then stroll to the granite buildings of Trinity College, where you can view the decorated pages of the Book of Kells. A variety of shops are tucked away in alleys and street performers entertain passersby. Whether you stop in an old pub or a trendy cafe, make time for a refreshing pint and snack on some soda bread.
In Edinburgh you’ll also find charming streets and alleyways, but to see the whole city it can be worthwhile to travel on a double-decker bus tour. The Royal Mile is a thoroughfare in Old Town that stretches between Edinburgh Castle and the Palace of Holyroodhouse. On this mile visitors will encounter pubs, shops, museums and churches. For an example of the city’s modern architecture look to the National Museum of Scotland, which houses everything from exhibits explaining the clan feuds to modern artwork.