Pictures from England

Exploring our Celtic Spirituality

A Pilgrimage to England and Scotland

Led by:

The Rev. Tom Ader
The Episcopal Church of St. Peter and Paul
Marietta, GA

September 6 – 15, 2007

Trip map

DAY 1, Thursday, September 6, 2007 - Depart the United States from Atlanta bound for Edinburgh, Scotland.  Dinner on board the aircraft. D

DAY 2, Friday, September 7, 2007 – We will arrive in Edinburgh and take a panoramic tour of the city before driving south to the Holy Island of Lindisfarne where we will have some time to rest and reflect before enjoying a group dinner. BD

DAY 3, Saturday, September 8, 2007 – We will have a walking tour of the island including the “Old Road”.  Aidan and his monks came from the Irish monastery of Iona, and with the support of King Oswald (based at nearby Bamburgh), worked as missionaries among the pagan English of Northumbria.  In their monastery, they set up the first known school in this area and introduced the arts of reading and writing, the Latin language and the Bible and other Christian books (all in Latin).  They trained boys as practical missionaries who later went out over much of England to spread the Gospel.  Aidan also encouraged women to become nuns and girls to receive education but not in this monastery.  In time, Lindisfarne became known for its skill in Christian art of which the Lindisfarne Gospels are the most beautiful surviving example.  You are free to have lunch on your own and further explore.  We will have dinner and overnight on Lindisfarne. BD

DAY 4, Sunday, September 9, 2007 – Morning services on Holy Island and then we will depart traveling north and across Scotland.  We will visit Rosslyn Chapel, dedicated to St. Matthew in 1446.  The chapel is known for the quality and variety of the stone carvings inside which cover almost every square inch of stonework.  The chapel is believed by many to be the burial place of the Holy Grail and was a featured location in the popular novel, The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown.  We continue to the abbeys known as the border abbeys which lie along the border between Scotland and England.  We will visit Jedburgh and Dryburgh Abbeys.  We will continue our drive north through the Trossachs which contain some of Scotland’s most beautiful hills, forests and lakes.  We will see Loch Lomond, the largest of all Scotland’s lakes before arriving at Oban, a lively waterfront town on the shores of the Atlantic.  We will overnight at Oban and you will be free to find one of the many interesting pubs or seafood restaurants that dot the town for your dinner this evening. B

DAY 5, Monday, September 10, 2007 - We will board our ferry to the Island of Mull and say goodbye to our guide who has been with us since our arrival.  Upon reaching Mull, we will travel across the island to the second ferry that will take us to the Holy Island of Iona.  We will have a guide from the island join us and introduce us to the history and importance of Iona.  We will explore the Abbey, visit St. Oran’s Chapel, Cemetery (the burial ground of 48 Scottish Kings including Duncan who was killed by Macbeth), Nunnery Church and Church of St. Ronan. & We will have Evening Prayer in St. Michael’s Chapel and attend the 9 PM services at Iona Abbey together.  We will have dinner and overnight on Iona. BD

DAY 6, Tuesday, September 11, 2007 - Today we will take a boat tour around the Treshnish Islands to the Isle of Staffa.  This basaltic wonder harbors Fingal’s Cave, formed within tertiary basalt lava flows which cooled to form hexagonal columns.  The island itself is a bird sanctuary harboring many types of sea birds.  We will return to the Island of Iona to continue our exploration there.  Dinner and overnight on Iona. BD

DAY 7, Wednesday, September 12, 2007 - A three hour walking tour of Machair and Columba's Bay, said to be where St. Columba landed from Ireland in 563 AD.  We will visit a marble quarry which is no longer in use although pieces of stones with green marble may still be found.  The rest of the day will include a combination of free time and continuing introduction to Celtic Christianity and spirituality.  We will attend a late evening service at Iona Abbey.  Overnight Isle of Iona. BD

DAY 8, Thursday, September 13, 2007 - Today we are free to experience this true “thin space” where through the ages pilgrims have sensed the nearness of the holy.  We will have to time to walk to Dun I, the highest point on the island and, from which, on a clear day all of the Treshnish Islands are visible.  We will have noon day prayer at St. Oran’s Chapel and visit the Iona Heritage Center which contains a wealth of information about the secular history of the island.  We will visit the St. Columba Welcome and Exhibition Center and still have time to have some spiritual quiet time.  We will attend a late evening service at Iona Abbey.  Overnight Isle of Iona. BD

DAY 9, Friday, September 14, 2007 – Morning services at the Abbey and then we will board the ferry back to the mainland and travel to Edinburgh.  Upon arrival in Edinburgh, we will have a panoramic sightseeing tour of the beginning with the Castle where we see the spectacular views from the battlements.  We continue to the Royal Mile which will help orient us to places we would like to visit later.  We will see the Palace of Holyroodhouse, official residence of the Queen when she is in Scotland.  The original palace was rebuilt by Charles II in the style of the French King, Louis XIV, and the palace is open to visitors when the queen is not in residence.  The afternoon will be free for exploring on your own before our farewell dinner this evening. BD

DAY 10, Saturday, September 15, 2007 – Depart from Edinburgh back to Atlanta arriving this afternoon. BL

Price: $2,799.00.  Price is based on double occupancy without airline taxes and fuel surcharges.  Roundtrip air from Atlanta, GA.  Air transportation available from other cities.

An application for travel insurance will be included with the receipt for your deposit.   We strongly recommend that you seriously consider this coverage.

Meals: B Breakfast, L Lunch, D Dinner

The itinerary is subject to change due to local conditions or at the discretion and direction of the leader or guide.