Next year London hosts seven games as part of the UEFA European Championship 2020, running in the city from the 14th of June to the 12th July. It’s possible you’ve realised that these dates will unfortunately coincide with school activity weeks, meaning school trips to the capital will get increasingly difficult. These events look likely to raise the price of accommodation and make this harder to squeeze your groups in amongst the tens of thousands of fans expected to flood the city during these weeks. We care about providing the best school trips and considering budgets so, with London proving such a popular destination for easy, engaging school trips, we want to re-assure you that with us, planning a school trip elsewhere will be just as easy and bursting with engagement from start to finish.
So, fear not for the U.K and Ireland have plenty of extraordinary, educational and engaging destinations outside of London, perfect for any group, whatever their age or subject. In this blog we’ll be giving you the run down on the destinations we love, helping you pick the best trip for your group and make this the most rewarding activities week yet!
If you’re planning a school trip it can be hard to cater your trip to a range of subjects and topics while also offering your students unique, engaging experiences. Cue our helpful rundown of locations and visits that enable you to do just that.
Primary Topics: Living Things, Plants and Animals, Habitats, Fieldwork, Seas and Oceans, Physical Geography, British History, Art, and Enrichment.
Secondary Topics: Ecology, Waves, Landscapes, Coastal Management, Living World, Physical Geography, Field Work, Painting, Pottery & Ceramics and Painting
Cornwall’s stunning location and rolling coastlines make it one of the easiest sells as a travel destination, but what is there for students? We hear you cry. What doesn’t it have? A range of fantastic, unique experiences set amongst some of the UK’s most beautiful scenery promises to forge unforgettable memories for you and your groups.
Primary Topics: Living Things, Plants and Habitats
Secondary Topics: Ecology, Living World, Life Science, Plant Organisation, Bioenergetics, Ecosystems
Arguably one of Cornwall’s most unique attractions this beautiful haven for wildlife and biodiversity is home to numerous biomes that house exotic plants from around the globe. Amongst the plant life on offer your students can discover examples from tropical regions, Mediterranean climates and temperate conditions, many of which they will be experiencing for the first time. As an educational experience these visits can be tailored to cover key topics from both KS1 and KS2 curriculums, giving your students plenty to bring back to the classroom.
Primary Topics: British History / Enrichment.
Secondary Topics: British History & Heritage, Enrichment.
This tin mine will take you and your students back in time, exploring Cornwall’s industrial heritage. Perfectly preserved in time this visit has a historic tie to the region’s rich mining heritage and allows your students to experience traditional 18th century mining first-hand.
Primary Topics: Fieldwork, Seas and Oceans, and Physical Geography.
Secondary Topics: Coastal & Physical Landscapes, Field Work, Natural Hazards.
Home to England’s first Natural World Heritage Site the Jurassic Coast, as well as being breathtakingly stunning also offers plenty for your students to discover. Exploring this region your students will walk through time discovering the historic changes in our natural world from Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods from caves and caverns to coastal landforms and its iconic arches.
Primary Topics: Enrichment.
Secondary Topics: Coastal Management and Tourism.
A trip to Cornwall could never be complete without a visit to one of the region’s beautiful beaches. On a visit to these seaside staples your students can explore the natural beauty of the Cornish coast while enjoying the idyllic seaside town and villages nestled alongside these impressive landscapes. Of course, there’s always time to squeeze in a creamy Cornish ice cream too!
Primary Topics: Victorians, Vikings, British Monarchs, Romans, Vikings, Anglo-Saxons, Rock Formations, Mining and Quarrying, Moving Water, Water Energy, Materials, Forces and Energy and Enrichment.
Secondary Topics: British Empire and People, Britain at War, The Church, The Industrial Revolution, The Normans, Science, Art & Design.
York is an undeniable hub for UK history, bursting at the seams with remnants of history from a wealth of significant periods. Not only is York the perfect place for exploring history with your students, there are a number of visits that explore other subjects, as well exciting enrichment opportunities. If you’re looking for a city with all the excitement of London coupled with a quaint charismatic uniqueness look no further than York.
Topics: Vikings, Anglo-Saxons.
Possibly one of York’s best educational experiences is the Jorvik Viking Centre, an immersive step back into York’s historic Viking settlement of Jorvik, one of the largest, most famous and most well preserved discovered. On this visit your students can experience how Viking communities lived and worked as well as socialised, complete with the sounds and scents of a Viking settlement.
Primary Topics: Victorians, British Monarchs, WWI.
Secondary Topics: The British Empire & Monarchy, Britain at War, Industrial Revolution.
York Castle Museum is a fantastic museum in the city centre allowing your students to explore various periods of York’s history and British history on a wider scale. One of the most popular aspects of the museum is the Victorian Street, which allows your group to get a realistic feel of Victorian life in the city, complete with the iconic Terry’s of York sweet shop!
Primary Topics: Rock Formations, Mining and Quarrying, Moving Water, Water Energy, Materials, Forces and Energy.
Secondary Topics: Energy Changes, Electricity and Forces, Waves and Power.
MAGNA is undeniably impressive, housing exciting immersive experiences within a gargantuan former steel works. This fantastic visit encompasses everything thrilling that can be found in the world of science and allows your students to immerse themselves in this first-hand. Spread across 4 pavilions, each one of the areas your students can explore represent the elements needed to make steel, a gentle nod to the venues former use. Magna is a truly remarkable and enriching experience which is sure to make your students fall in love with this fantastic subject.
Primary Topics: Drama, Literature, British History, Design and Technology.
Secondary Topics: Shakespeare, Creative Writing, Performance & Theatre.
Stratford-upon-Avon is the perfect destination for school groups, as an accessible, budget friendly but exciting location filled with great visits, covering a range of topics. The birthplace of William Shakespeare, this historic market town is bursting with unique history, which is perfectly preserved in the buildings and landmarks waiting to be explored.
Primary Topics: Literacy, Tudors, and British Monarchs.
Secondary Topics: Shakespeare, British History.
Visit the home of famous Playwright William Shakespeare and take a look at where he grew up alongside his family. While there your students can explore the multiple rooms in the house, stepping back in time to discover typical Tudor life. As well as exploring this perfectly preserved Tudor home your students can also discover rare and exclusive artefacts belonging to the playwright himself. Extended tours are available which allow your group to visit other areas of interest such as Mary Arden’s Cottage and Anne Hathaway’s Cottage.
Primary Topics: Literacy and Enrichment.
Secondary Topics: Shakespeare, Creative Writing, Physical Theatre, Set and Theatre Design, Space, Body and Voice, Performance.
Where better to witness one of Shakespeare’s iconic masterpieces come to life than his hometown, Stratford-upon-Avon? Preserving Shakespeare’s legacy, the RSC combines timeless Shakespearean classics with modern and contemporary elements connecting iconic theatre with modern theatrical developments and techniques. Whatever piece your group choses you will be guaranteed a fantastic theatrical experience.
Primary Topics: Design and Technology, Mechanical Design, Materials, Energy, Electric Forces.
Secondary Topics: Energy, Electrical Forces, Mechanical Devices, Mechanical Design, Materials and Properties, Electronic and Mechanical Systems.
The MAD Museum is the UK’s only permanent museum dedicated to mechanical art and experimentation. Bursting with interactive exhibits, gadgets and immersive experiences this unique museum brings to life some of the most imaginative gadgets and gizmos in the world. The museum aims to develop students’ awareness of mechanical design and make them consider the basic principles of physics in the everyday objects they use.
Discover more about school trips to Stratford-upon-Avon for your Primary and Secondary groups.
Primary Topics: Plants and Animals, Seas and Oceans, Energy and Power, Humans.
Secondary Topics: Biology, Animal Organisation, Plant Organisation, Cell Structure.
Edinburgh is one of the most popular cities, ranking the second most visited city in the UK and it’s easy to see why! This mesmerizing city is the inspiration behind JK Rowling’s Harry Potter, and its magic doesn’t end there. Boasting a range of fantastic museums, galleries and historic buildings, making it a fantastic destination for school groups!
Primary Topics: Energy and Power, Living things, Animals and Humans
Secondary Topics: Biology, Animal Organisation, Plant Organisation, Cell Structure, Genetics, Energy and Fuel, Space Travel
This museum is a fantastic visit for students of all ages, offering plenty to explore amongst its interactive and immersive experiences. Spread out over 5 exciting areas your students can explore space travel and exploration, energy and power, genetics, robotics and transport, each with their own range of interactive experiences and activities for them to get involved in.
Primary Topics: Oceans and Seas, Evolution, Big Bang, and Living things
Secondary Topics: The Universe, Oceans and Seas, Landscapes, Human Geography, Changing Climate, Sustaining Environments, Natural World.
Dynamic Earth whisks your students away on a journey through Earth’s past, present and future with a range of interactive and immersive exhibits and breath-taking technology. Students will start their journey at the Big Bang learning about the creation of the Earth, following this through the evolution, living things and early man, right up until the Earth’s present state, with a look into the future of the Earth and the next thousands of years.
Primary Topics: Living things and habitats, Animals
Secondary Topics: Animal Organisations, Ecosystems, Biodiversity and Protection, Life on Earth, Conservation.
Edinburgh Zoo is one of the best Zoos in Europe boasting over 1000 animals both big and small across its whopping 82-acre grounds. Amongst these animals are the only Giant Pandas in the UK, a rare opportunity or your students to get up close and personal with these magnificent animals. As well as the animals housed at the Zoo the visit will also educate your students on the vital conservation projects in the UK, as one of Europe’s leading centres for research, conservation and learning.
Primary Topics: History, WW2, Creative Writing & Literature
Secondary Topics: History, Politics, Industry and Design, Britain at War.
As the capital of Northern Ireland Belfast has a lot to offer students from its unique history to its traditional Irish culture. Famous world-wide for the creation of the RMS Titanic, Belfast’s unique history doesn’t end there. One of the most notable periods of the city’s history was during The Troubles, a period of unrest in Northern Ireland, particularly in Belfast. As a school trip location, the city seamlessly combines its breath-taking modern architecture with its beautiful heritage sites, making for a unique experience.
Nestled amongst the birthplace of the Titanic itself in Belfast docks is this newly opened visitor centre, dedicated to telling the story of the famous ship. Starting at its conception through to construction and its doomed maiden voyage this museum explores every avenue of the Titanic’s infamous story from its very beginnings in the city.
Secondary Topics: British Politics, Local history and politics, Human Rights, Conflict Resolution.
On this 2½-hour tour your students can learn about the history of the Troubles and the impact this turbulent period had on the area. The tour begins with explaining the conditions which lead to the troubles, before moving on to hear stories of people involved and the impact this conflict had on the city and its people. It also highlights the progress of the city since the ceasefires and Peace Process. Your tours can be tailored to cover certain topics within politics such as Human Rights and Conflict Resolution.
Secondary Topics: Physical Geography, Seas and Oceans, Waves, Enrichment.
One of Northern Ireland’s most famous landmarks is the mesmerising Giants Causeway situated outside of Belfast. This captivating visit is a product of over 60 million years of geological changes to this chalky coastal landscape. Your students can explore millennia of the landscape’s unique geography from volcanic activity to ocean erosion, all of which have formed the fantastic landmark seen today.
Secondary Topics: WW2 and WW1
At the Belfast War Memorial Gallery, you and your students can explore the impact that WW2 had on the region from artefacts and accounts from the Ulster Home Guard, documenting incidents such as the Belfast Blitz and other landmark moments of fighting in Belfast. As well as this you can discover the role of local women in the war and the introduction of US forces in the UK. Alongside the information and artefacts from the Second World War the visit also allows your students to understand the impact of First World War and remember those who sacrificed their lives for modern freedoms in both major wars.
Discover what Belfast has to offer your Secondary school group here.
Secondary Topics: Drama and Performance, Classic Literature, Theatre and Set Design, Creative Writing.
Dublin is a fantastic destination for Secondary groups covering a number of subjects and topics including English and Drama, Food Technology and Enrichment. Amongst the top 30 cities in the World Dublin lends itself as a cultural and historical hub, as well as offering visits which make it a modern centre for education. Alongside its electric atmosphere Dublin has plenty to offer students wanting to explore its unique history and its amazing links to theatre, literature and art.
Secondary Topics: Literature, Poetry, Creative Writing.
This fantastic museum is any English teacher’s dream, allowing your students to wander through over 300 years of literary history, exploring the lives of some of Dublin’s most iconic literary names. Amongst the artefacts on display are numerous books, letters, portraits and even personal items relating to the writers themselves, making this a unique experience for your students to see a different side to the writers they are studying.
Secondary Topics: Performance, Set and Theatre Design, Space, Body & Voice, Musical Theatre
One of Ireland’s most unique theatres and architectural spaces the Bord Gais Energy Theatre was designed by architect Daniel Libeskind and has a capacity of over 2,000. Playing host to some of the biggest productions across Theatre, Musicals, Drama, Opera, Ballet and Classical Concerts these facilities are amongst the best in industry. You and your students can explore these facilities and understand how the theatre prepares for its various performances.
Secondary Topics: Food Safety, Food Provenance, Food Preparation
Your students can go behind the scenes at Chocolate Warehouse and understand the process behind everyone’s favourite sweet treat; Chocolate! Learning through a combination of hands-on experiences and informative guides your students will be amazed by the sights, smells and tastes of the factory from cocoa beans through to the tasty treats they sell. With opportunities to sample the life of a chocolatier your students can also decorate their own chocolates, which they can take home.
Discover the rest of Dublin’s fantastic curriculum visits here.
We’re incredibly lucky to have opportunities to explore such exciting and engaging locations right on our doorsteps, from all corners of the UK and Ireland. We know that school trips to London are always a popular choice but it’s fantastic to know that there’s a world of educational experiences nestled around every corner, simply waiting to be discovered.
If you’re usually planning a school trip to London around this time of year, get in touch with a member of our friendly team, we’ll help you pick an equally fantastic location with plenty of new, exciting visits to keep you and your group entertained and engaged.
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