Burns Night is a staple celebration in a Scot’s calendar. To commemorate the life of the bard (poet) Robert Burns let’s get together to enjoy a festive feast of Neeps, tatties, whisky, haggis, and poetry by the plateful.
This fantastic four-day tour charts the life and times of the brilliant Robert Burns, peerless poet of the lowlands, through the beautiful pastoral settings that inspired him. Basing ourselves in the west of Scotland, we follow in Burns’ fascinating footsteps, from his humble Ayrshire beginnings in 1759, to his untimely death in Dumfries at the age of just 37.
A fervent collector of folk songs and tales, no-one has done more to preserve Scotland’s heritage — nor, dare we say it, promote the country’s haggises!
Join us to discover the man behind the legacy, see the sites that spurred on his works, imagine the rousing dances and debates that took place in his co-founded club, read the original lines of his cherished manuscripts, and pay homage at his mausoleum.
What You’ll Love
- Traditional Burns Supper with all the trimmings
- Exclusive private viewing of Burns material in the Mitchell Library
- The Burns Birthplace Museum
- Visit Ellisland Farm and the Bachelor’s Club
- Paying your own tribute at the Burns Mausoleum
- Comfortable coaching throughout with ferry transfers
- Services of a professional tour manager
Single Supplements apply. Subject to availability.
We depart from our designated pick-up points and journey to Ayrshire and arrive at our first stop in the afternoon, The Bachelors’ Club in Tarbolton, which Robert Burns co-founded a few years before his first collection of poems was published, in this curious red-shuttered, thatched 17th-century house. It was here that he learned to dance, became a freemason and created a men-only debating society. The Bachelors’ Club gives a rare insight into the secrets of male social life of the age.
We continue to our hotel in Troon, where dinner is served in the evening.
This morning is spent at the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum and then following in his footsteps through the village where he spent the early years of his life. Find out what made the great poet and song writer tick, and visit Alloway Auld Kirk, where it’s so easy to see Tam running from the witches and warlocks capering beside it. The place that captured Burns’ imagination is also the resting place of members of the Burns family and next to the church ruins you can find the ornately carved head stones of his father William Burnes and sister Isabella Burns Begg.
After lunch, we continue to Rozelle House which displays Alexander Goudie’s series of 54 paintings setting out the poem ‘Tam O’Shanter’.
Today we explore the lowlands of Scotland and see the landscapes which are captured in Burns’ lyrical verses; the forests and hills he loved so much and the place he called home at Ellisland Farm. We visit the farm, set on the tranquil river’s edge.
Next, we visit the house where Burns spent the latter years of his life, now the Robert Burns’ House Museum. The house remains largely untouched, adorned with the poet’s possessions.
Our final visit today is to Burns’ final resting place and memorial, the Robert Burns Mausoleum, which stands at the eastern end of the churchyard of St Michael’s Church, Dumfries. Burns was initially buried in the northeast corner of the churchyard, but before long his growing army of devoted fans began to feel that his existing grave was insufficient recognition for his genius. A circular was published in 1813 calling for the public to subscribe to the cost of a mausoleum and a fundraising campaign was launched, with Sir Walter Scott one of its leading lights. Money flowed in from all over the world but it was only in September 1817 that the mausoleum was complete and the monument installed within it.
A Burns Supper is served in the hotel this evening, featuring haggis, neeps and tatties, along with the traditional Address to the Haggis.
After a hearty Scottish breakfast, we head for Mauchline and the Burns House Museum, located in the former lodging of the poet and his wife. The museum showcases original manuscripts and inspirational objects he had surrounding him. It is claimed that it was the period living on this farm which gave rise to his most creative and productive works.
We continue to Glasgow and the Mitchell Library, which holds a memorial to Burns and one of the largest collections of his works in the world. Here we have arranged an exclusive private viewing of some of the most important books and material with the Curator.
We return to our original departure points.