2005 Scotland, Wales & Ireland

In the summer of 2005 the youth choir toured Aberdeen, Stirling, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Crewe, Dublin and Limerick.

Click here to see photos from the tour


Waiting at the airport.

-    arrive at Pearson International Airport (Toronto) and prepare for check in
-    flight via scheduled airline from Toronto to Aberdeen  (connection to be made enroute in both directions)  (airline and flight times to be advised)
-    (international groups must check in at least 3 hours prior to scheduled departure time)
-    dinner served in flight at discretion of the airline


Is there any better Scottish welcome?

-    breakfast served in flight
-    arrive at Aberdeen Airport where you will clear customs, collect luggage and meet your hired motorcoach and driver
-    transfer to your local festival accommodation (Hillhead Halls of Residence at University of Aberdeen) where you will stay for the next 5 nights  (driver will now drop off and depart the group)
-    register for the Aberdeen International Youth Festival ~ the festival represents a celebration of young talent, bringing together some of the world's finest youth groups to perform, make friends and learn about other cultures
-    you will meet your courier who will be with your group for your stay at the festival
-    all arrangements for the next 5 days are made by the Aberdeen Festival committee  
-    dinner included this evening at the festival

Getting ready to go on parade.

Note:  3 meals per day and all coaching transfers to performances and rehearsals in Aberdeen and other towns and venues in Scotland are provided by the festival during your time here - all meals should be taken on campus unless otherwise stated


-    breakfast included at the festival
-    Festival Parade down Union Street today
-    Inaugural Ceremony, at the Music Hall in Aberdeen
-    lunch and dinner included today at the festival
-    Opening Concert Performance
-    return to your festival accommodation


At the Aberdeen International Youth Festival we had six performances in five days!

-    breakfast included at the festival
-    participate in festival activities and concerts today - 2005 schedule of events to be advised
-    lunch and dinner included

Our final performance at the festival for an audience of over 1200 people. The choir was fantastic!


-    breakfast and lunch included at the festival
-    participate in festival activities and concerts today
-    dinner included


-    breakfast and lunch included at the festival
-    Aberdeen's International Street Carnival
-    Aberdeen Youth Day - day of workshops
-    evening "World Music and Choral Spectacular"
-    dinner included


Searching for the Loch Ness Monster! Oh No! . .  Wait a minute . . . I think we found . . .

-    breakfast included at the festival
-    meet your hired Macpherson coach and travel through the Scottish Highlands with your destination today being Aberfoyle
-    journey north west to Loch Ness, Scotland's most famous Loch  ~ "Nessie" has attracted increasing attention since ambiguous photgraphs were taken in the 1930's   
-    time to purchase lunch in this area
-    continue to Aberfoyle with a stop enroute for dinner  
-    arrive in Aberfoyle and check in to the Dounans Centre (or similar) for 2 nights accommodation


Our rehearsal in the chappel at Stirling Castle.

-    breakfast at your accommodation
-    board coach and depart for Edinburgh
-    enoute, make a stop in Stirling where you will visit the Stirling Castle, home of Sir William Wallace, the Scottish Patriot who's story is told in "Braveheart"
-    opportunity to sing inside Stirling Castle in the Chapel Royal
-    board your coach and continue to Edinburgh
-    enjoy a city tour of Edinburgh, Scotland's capital, a beautiful blend of history centered around the Old Town from the 12th century and the New Town, built in the late 18th century

On the walls at Stirling Castle.

-    free time to walk the Royal Mile to the Palace of Holyrood House, to visit the John Knox's House, the Floral Clock or explore one of the many museums
-    purchase lunch and dinner in Edinburgh today
-    arrive at Edinburgh Castle and attend the evening performance of the Edinburgh Military Tattoo  (Tattoo runs from August 5 - 27, 2005)
-    after the evening show, return to Aberfoyle for overnight accommodation

Taking in the Edinburgh Festival.

Day 9 - TUESDAY AUGUST 9 -to LIVERPOOL and CREWE     B / (D)

Singing in Liverpool Cathedral. It is the second longest and fifth largest cathedral in the world! It has an 8 and a half second reverberation time! We are standing under a bridge from one side of the cathedral to the other!

-    board your coach and depart for Crewe (via Hadrian's Wall and Liverpool)
-    today, you will see a section of Hadrian's Wall, a 73 mile wall erected across northern England to mark and defend the northern limits of the British Province and the northwest boundary of the Roman Empire  - today, the wall is owned by the National Trust and was abandoned in 383 as the Roman Empire crumbled, but much of it still remains
-    continue to Liverpool, home of "the Beatles"
-    free time to shop and visit museums in small groups (suggest the Tate Liverpool or the Walker Art Gallery)
-    purchase lunch in Liverpool
-    opportunity exists to sing inside Liverpool Cathedral
-    meet together at the Beatles Museum and visit "Beatles Story"
-    board coach and depart for Crewe
-    arrive in  Crewe to meet your host families
-    depart for their homes for the next 2 nights  (billeting arranged directly by choir)  
-    dinner with your host families

Day 10 - WEDNESDAY AUGUST 10  - to WALES    (B/D)

Well underground on a deep mine tour in northern Wales.

-    breakfast with your host families
-    board coach and depart on a day trip to Northern Wales
-    stop in Llangollen?? enroute
-    enjoy a visit and a ride on the Miner's Tramway Tour at Llechwedd Slate Caverns located in Blaenau Ffestiniog (Snowdonia National Park)
-    also, experience the Deep Mine Tour, as you descend on Britain's steepest passenger incline railway to the underground chambers
-    choir sing inside the mine
-    board a train in a corner of the original slate slabbing mill and ride into an 1846 tunnel, hauled by battery electric locomotive
-    entering through the side of the mountain this journey into the early Victorian past remains on the level, and traverses some spectacular caverns
-    stop in Betws-y-Coed located at the peaks of Snowdonia, a hill-walking centre since the 19th century
        -    point of interest is the Waterloo Bridge built by Thomas Telford (a gifted engineer responsible for many of Britains road's, bridges and canals) to mark victory against Napoleon
-    return to Crewe for dinner with your host families
        -    joint evening concert with your Crewe hosts


A view of Caernarfon Castle from one of its towers in northern Wales.

-    breakfast with your host families and prepare for departure
-    say good-bye to your Crewe host families and depart for Holyhead
-    enroute, stop and visit the Caernarfon Castle, one of the most famous castles in Wales
-    displays in the castle include the Royal Welch Fusiliers Museum and exhibitions tracing the history of the Princes of Wales and exploring the theme "Chieftains and Princes"
-    on a hill above the town are the ruins of Segontium, a Roman fort built in about AD78 ~ local legends claim that the firs Christian Emperor of Rome, Constantine the Great was born here in 280
-    continue to Holyhead where you will take the scheduled ferry crossing to Dublin
-    check into your Dublin accommodation for a 1 night stay
-    dinner included this evening

Day 12 - FRIDAY AUGUST 12 - to LIMERICK    B / (D)

Touring the Waterford Crystal factory in Waterford, Ireland.

-    breakfast at your accommodation followed by check out and loading of your coach
-    enjoy a morning visit to Dublinia at Christchurch ~ a heritage centre located in the heart of the old city and housed in a beautiful Victorian Neo - Gothic style building
-    this exhibition allows you to discover the history of the city and lifestyles of its inhabitants during the middle ages
-    purchase lunch before Limerick departure
-    board coach and depart Dublin for Limerick, the third largest city in the Republic and founded by the Vikings (allow 3 hour travel time)
        -    arrive in Limerick where you will meet your host families for 2 nights accommodation  (host billets arranged directly by the choir)
        -    dinner and evening with your host families

Day 13 - SATURDAY AUGUST 13  - RING OF KERRY     (B) / (D)

Graham, our accompanist, standing with what looks suspiciously like a very large champagne glass.

        -    breakfast with your host families
-    board coach and depart for a tour of the Ring of Kerry
-    the long established route around the Iveragh Peninsula can be taken in either direction today - this is a full day of sightseeing today
-    see the captivating mountain and coastal scenery with interesting detours across the spine of the Peninsula
-    return to Limerick for dinner with your hosts

Day 14 - SUNDAY AUGUST 14 to DUBLIN (final night)    (B) / D

Our final performance at St. Canice's Cathedral in Kilkenny, Ireland.

-    breakfast with your host families
-    morning participation and performance at a local church service in Limerick
-    say good - bye to your Limerick hosts and depart for Dublin
-    arrive in Dublin with final afternoon to shop
-    late afternoon check in to your Dublin accommodation for your final night
-    transfer to the Dublin Viking Adventure located beside the Civic Offices
-    visit Dublin's Viking Adventure where a guide will take you on a fascinating journey through Dublin of long ago
-    the centre also houses an extensive collection of artifacts discovered during the excavation of this site, considered to be the most important of its kind outside of Scandinavia  
-    final farewell dinner at the Dublin Viking Feast located in the impressive setting of the Dyflin Feasting Hall
-    return to your accommodation for your final evening and last minute packing


Here is the sun set that greeted us as we traveled from Toronto airport back to St. Thomas, ending our tour!

-    breakfast followed by check out and loading of your coach
-    board coach and depart for Dublin Airport
-    arrive at the airport, check in and prepare for flight
-    scheduled flight from Dublin to Pearson International Airport, Toronto (connection to be made enroute) (airline and flight details to be advised)
-    (international groups must check in at least 3 hours prior to scheduled departure time)
-    inflight meals served at the discretion of the airline
-    estimated arrival at Pearson International Airport - WELCOME HOME!