Raise your hand if you’d like nothing better than to go on a pub crawl with Tyrion, warn Sansa against marrying that brute Joffrey or tell King Robert to lose a few pounds.
By Natalia Rosa
If the phrase ‘Winter is coming’ warms the cockles of your heart instead of chilling it to the core, you’ll be ecstatic to hear you too can now enjoy your very own Game of Thrones escape with the 2016 launch of a new Trafalgar Celtic Filmscapes guided holiday in Ireland and Scotland.
Movie buffs will love Trafalgar’s tribute to Celtic Filmscapes in 2016. From Edinburgh’s Princes Street where Renton and Spud ‘choose life’ in ‘Trainspotting’ (1996) to the majestic Valley of the Weeping at Glencoe where Daniel Craig strode in James Bond’s ‘Skyfall’ (2012) and Mel Gibson fought for his freedom in ‘Braveheart’ (1995), Celtic Filmscapes also touches Outlander’s Falkland, the historic town of St. Andrews, home to ‘Chariots of Fire’, and the Isle of Skye where Ridley Scott filmed Prometheus (2012).
Trafalgar Global Product Manager Liesa Bissett says the highlight of this new guided holiday is a visit to the actual Game of Thrones film site of Winterfell in County Down at Castle Ward in Ireland where travellers can tap their inner Jon Snow and Robb Stark and enjoy the thrill of firing live arrows. This is where you will find the Whispering Wood and key scenes including Robb Stark’s Camp, the Baelor battle and when Brienne confronts the Stark men. Dress up in character costumes from the show and tour the movie set. If getting Medieval isn’t your cup of tea, there are other opportunities to satisfy your obsessions when travelling in 2016, says Lisa:
‘Grappa’ bit of Italy
Foodies are in for a treat, not to mention packing on a few pounds when they sample all the Flavours of Italy. Sip chianti in Tuscany, devour Proscuitto in Parma and gobble down delicious traditional Bolognese in Bologna. The Italians have coined the phrase first we eat, then we do everything else and as the other saying goes…When in Rome, so a visit to Italy without sampling the destination’s diverse and exquisite cuisine would be absolute sacrilege.
Stroll through the colourful food market stalls in Florence with Chef Libero who’ll teach you to cook à la mode italiano. People watch on the steps of Paizza Navona as you savour a tasty gelato and linger over a lengthy lunch on the shores of Lake Maggiore. Italy is a feast of the senses no matter in what stagione you choose to visit.
From the Bluebell steam train and the seaside tastes of Brighton to the poetic gardens of Sissinghurst and traditional cream tea at Mount Ephraim Stately Home & Gardens, discover the flowers and feasts of south-east England with Trafalgar’s English Country Garden Guided Holiday on the sidelines of the world-famous Chelsea Flower Show from the 24th to 28th May. During next year’s event, the centerpiece of the exhibit will be a 25m-long carriage from a 1920s Belmond British Pullman, while the new Covent Garden Flower market will make its debut with a stunning floral installation. See all the sights of London, explore vast Victorian glasshouses and visit some of England’s most incredible botanical gardens – a blooming special experience next May!
Lest we forget…
There’s something about war, and particularly the two World Wars of the previous century, that holds morbid fascination for many. The WWI and WWII guided holiday takes visitors to poignant sites in northern France, Belgium and The Netherlands, as well as southern England to hear about the D-Day Landings and London to see the Imperial War Museum which tells the stories of those whose lives were shaped by war. Learn about the story of Operation Overlord from its origins in the dark days of 1940 to victory in Normandy in 1944. Visit the Somme Battlefields and stop at Thiepval to see the poignant memorial which honours the 72191 missing British and South African men who died with no graves. See the Essex Farm Cemetery where Lt. Col. John McCrea wrote the immortal poem – ‘in Flanders Fields’. A sobering journey back in time, yet an opportunity to remember those who lost their lives for their countries.
For more information see: www.trafalgar.com/sa