With an active itinerary full of breathtaking natural beauty, we’ll sail from London’s iconic Tower Bridge to the historic port of Portsmouth and the battlements of Dartmouth Castle. Zodiac, kayak, and hike with naturalists, tour historic Alderney with its wealth of seabirds and wildlife, and the Isles of Scilly or Tresco. Skomer Island overflows with seabird colonies and colorful wildflowers. You may hike the rugged Pembrokeshire Coastal Path or visit St. David’s Cathedral in Fishguard. On the Sark Island, visit whimsical La Seigneurie Gardens or hike to the Gouliot Caves.
• Zodiac around the Isles of Scilly and the Welsh isle of Ramsey, enjoying unparalleled views of marine life, including whales, dolphins, seals, and more. Kayak around Alderney Island and seek out puffins and other nesting birds
• Visit the historic dockyards at Portsmouth and see the HMS Victory, an 18th-century warship that played a role Britain’s great naval victory at the Battle of Trafalgar
• See the battlements of Dartmouth Castle and St. David’s Cathedral in Fishguard
• After the sun sets on Sark, stargaze with a local astronomer from the island’s Astronomical Society
Arrive in London, and embark National Geographic Orion, docked on the Thames. As we set sail, take in views of the city’s iconic landmarks and hear a presentation from a maritime expert on the importance of Portsmouth as a seaport. (L,D)
Our first anchoring is England’s maritime capital of Portsmouth. Delve into Great Britain’s nautical history with a behind-the scenes look at the perfectly preserved historic ships docked in the harbor, including the HMS Victory. Wander the city’s atmospheric waterfront, and perhaps stop for a pint at a traditional pub. (B,L,D)
Opt to venture through the English countryside to Southwick House, the Allied headquarters during the D-Day landings. We have exclusive permission to enter the fascinating D-Day Map room.
Anchor at Alderney and take a walking tour of the island to learn about its important role in World War II under German occupation. Then, weather permitting, kayak across surrounding waters in search of migratory seabirds: puffins, gannets, and lesser black-backed gulls. After lunch, we sail to nearby Sark. Take in the colorful sights and intoxicating scents of La Seigneurie Gardens. (B,L,D)
The coastal paths of Alderney are perfect for heading off on your own to cycle or hike with stops at must see viewpoints. On Sark, you may wish to explore the blooming headland of the Gouliot Caves.
Enjoy breakfast on deck as our vessel navigates the River Dart en route to Dartmouth, a colorful town that cascades across a steep riverside hill. In small groups, discover the guardrooms, battlements, and winding passages of the 14th-century Dartmouth Castle. Spend the rest of the day exploring Dartmouth’s lively lanes on your own.(B,L,D)
Contrary to popular belief, we’ve discovered the U.K. does make wine, and it is quite good. Opt to visit a winery and vineyard, and sample the wines and local cheeses. Or, if you’re a mystery book fan, don’t miss a visit to Greenway House for a curator-led look at Agatha Christie’s house and gardens.
According to Arthurian legend, the Isles of Scilly are all that remain of Lyonnesse, a lost land off Cornwall’s coast that is said to have vanished into the Atlantic. Discover Tresco Island and the world-class Tresco Abbey Gardens, where a surprising variety of tropical plants flourishes. Then stroll the village of Tresco, or join our naturalists for a nature walk, spotting the flora and fauna of these mythical islands. (B,L,D)
Beautiful Skomer Island overflows with wildlife. Hop on a Zodiac to spot whales, dolphins, seals, and nesting seabirds. This afternoon stretch your legs along the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path, which winds along the cliffs and pristine beaches surrounding Fishguard. Or, discover the prehistoric archaeology of Pembrokeshire, the area that yielded the stones for Stonehenge. Or, venture to St. David’s Cathedral for a guided walk of the lovely little town, before dinner ashore in Fishguard.(B,L,D)
This evening we've arranged a special dinner in a 13th century castle in the incredible Pembrokeshire countryside, complete with a private musical performance.
Dock at Holyhead and take a scenic drive to Snowdonia National Park. There are river gorges, waterfalls, lakes, and valleys to explore, whether you are coming for pulse-raising activities or for simply standing and admiring the Snowdonia Mountains. Or, visit Wales’ famed Bodnant Gardens, backed by the Snowdonia range. Continue to Angelsey, a recognized GeoPark, to hike or cycle past intriguing rock formations. Enjoy a festive musical celebration before setting sail to Dublin. (B,L,D)
Wake up in Dublin, disembark and head to the airport for your flight home. (B)
All day-by-day breakdowns are a sampling of the places we intend to visit, conditions permitting.
These cabins feature an oval window and two single beds, two beds that can be converted to a queen-size bed, or a queen size bed (call for details). You'll find an armchair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall.
These roomy cabins feature an oval window and two single beds, two beds that can be converted to a queen-size bed, or a queen size bed (call for details). You'll find an armchair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall.
Cat 3 Suite with Window #401-412, 414-419 These suites have a comfortable sofa in the sitting area with a large window and plenty of storage. They have a variety of bed configurations (call for details) plus a writing desk and chair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. Modern bathrooms are generously sized with roomy glass-walled shower stall.
These solo cabins feature a window or two portholes, a queen-size bed, writing desk and chair, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV.
Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall
Cat 4 Deluxe suite with Window #511, 515 - These two suites feature separate sleeping and sitting areas, with a two-seater sofa that looks out a large rectangular window. Beds are configurable. You'll find storage, climate controls, reading lamps, a TV. Modern bathrooms are generously sized with roomy glass-walled shower stall.
Cat 5 Suite with Balcony #501, 503-506, 508 - These spacious suites feature open living areas and sliding glass doors that open to a private French balcony. Beds are configurable, and you'll find sitting chairs or a couch, a writing desk, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. The bathroom is spacious and has a glass-walled shower.
Cat 3S Suite with Window #512 - This solo suite features two beds and a large window, plus a bucket chair and small table, climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV. The bathroom is spacious and has a glass-walled shower.
Cat 6 Owner’s suite with Balcony #502, 507, 509*, 510 - These large, owner's suites feature a balcony (Cabin 509 does not have a balcony), a spacious bathroom with a large shower and separate soaking tub with a window, and a large separate living area with a couch and two bucket chairs, plus climate controls, reading lamps, and a TV.
National Geographic Orion
Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition
Length: 103 metres
Passenger Capacity: 102 (in 53 cabins)
Built: 2003 / Refurbished 2014
Engineered for maximum comfort and safety, Orion is equipped with the latest technology including large retractable stabilizers, sonar, radar, and an ice-strengthened hull. A shallow draft plus bow and stern thrusters provide the convenience of being able to maneuver close to shore. 14 Zodiacs ensure quick disembarkation and offer the ideal transport for up-close exploration.
National Geographic Orion meets strict specifications for environmental protection and the on board waste management systems meet the stringent Antarctic operational standards enabling us to travel to the most pristine environments. A host of advanced design features and technology ensures sustainable marine environmental practices.
National Geographic Orion accommodates 102 guests in 53 cabins, including several with balconies. She is spacious and modern, with a variety of public rooms that offer panoramic views of the passing landscape. Friendly and informal, Orion fosters a welcoming atmosphere where like-minded guests share in exceptional experiences and enrichment.
Her public rooms include a dramatic window-lined main lounge, as well as an observation lounge and library perched at the very top of the ship, with plentiful observation decks. The spacious lounge is the heart of our expedition community, and is suited for spirited cocktail hours, informative presentations and our nightly tradition of Recap. In addition, a dedicated theater provides a unique setting for specialist presentations or films and slideshows. Both the main dining room and outside buffet easily accommodate all guests at once for open seating dining. On selected nights, weather permitting, our dining room menu is also available on the outside deck.
While Orion interiors are elegant, life aboard is always casual, with no need for formal clothing. And you’ll find shipboard services like laundry, in-room cabled internet, and public-area wifi.
$1000 Credit on Wild and Windswept: The Coasts of England and Wales
With an active itinerary full of breathtaking natural beauty, we’ll sail from London’s iconic Tower Bridge to the historic port of Portsmouth and the battlements of Dartmouth Castle.
From London to Dublin - 8 days.
Aboard National Geographic Orion.
2 September 2017.
Saving: AU$1 000
Discounted Rates: AU$8 990 - AU$19 760
Standard Rates: AU$9 990 - AU$20 760
Book a Europe voyage aboard National Geographic Orion and receive a one-time special saving offer of $1,000 towards the cost of your voyage. Maximum special savings offer per guest of AU$1,000 per National Geographic Orion European season. Savings applied prior to any other discounts/offers.
Save 10% on 2 or More Voyages aboard NG Orion
Fall in love with Europe all over again, or for the first time, on one- or two-week voyages aboard the 102-guest National Geographic Orion, the most intimate luxury ship in Europe.
Aboard National Geographic Orion.
Book two or more Europe voyages aboard National Geographic Orion and take 10% off each voyage. Savings is applicable to back-to-back or non-consecutive voyages. This savings is available on voyage fare only, and is not valid on airfares or extensions. Please contact us for more details.
Free Bar Tab and Crew Tips Included aboard NG Orion and NG Explorer
Aboard National Geographic Orion & National Geographic Explorer.
Beginning in Apr. 2017, we will cover your bar tab and all tips for the crew on all National Geographic Explorer and
National Geographic Orion voyages. Promotion subject to availability, contact us for further details.