Travel with a twist: Group trip for grown-ups

Published 12:40 am Tuesday, April 30, 2019

After leading seven different educational tours around the world for students, Andalusia High School English teacher Dawn Thompson plans to take a group of adults on an educational trip to England, Scotland and Ireland.

“I have been around town and people always ask if I am going to do another trip,” Thompson said. “Recently I have been getting some people asking me to do an adult trip and I figured that it would be a great idea.”

Thompson said that the biggest difference between traveling with students and adults is going to be the freedom.

“When we travel with students we have to make sure that they are all accounted for and back by dinner,” Thompson said. “But with this trip we aren’t going to have an assigned dinner that is mandatory so we can all be separated for dinner or a couple can go have midday tea if they wanted. There is going to be so much freedom on this trip.”

Thompson, who is retiring at the end of this school year, has taught English at AHS for 29 years, which is one of the reasons why she wanted to take the trip to England. 

“I have been to London three times,” Thompson said. “And I have discovered new things every time I go. The history is rich, ranging from Ancient Roman ruins to the tower of London, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, museums and the Churchill War Rooms. It is truly one of the most exciting cities in the world.”

Sometimes it takes a T.V. show to inspire people to travel, which is why Thompson wants to travel to Scotland.

“I have been watching a lot of The Outlanders,” Thompson said. “So I cannot wait to see the iconic locations from the series. We will also see the city that inspired J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter Series. Edinburgh is the original Harry Potter World. It is also home to the world’s largest private collection of Scotch Whiskey.”

Thompson has never been to Ireland, but said that her son gave it good enough reviews to peak her interest.

“Jackson spent a week in Ireland in 2017,” Thompson said. “He said that the people are as great as all of the sights. The natural beauty is breathtaking, and the architecture is unique. Dublin has the most pubs per capita in Europe and the music is amazing.”

She said that she is looking at coordinating a trip for adults every two years, because it is easier for people to travel in groups than by themselves.

“Many people are not comfortable touring different countries by themselves,” Thompson said. “These tours are an avenue for traveling with an experienced tour leader.”

Travelers will get to experience London, Edinburgh, Liverpool via the Lake District, Dublin, County Kerry via Blarney, the Ring of Kerry and Limerick via the Cliffs of Moher. They will also get to go on a Buckingham Palace Tour, a Royal Tour of the palaces, castles and cathedrals in England, Scotland and Ireland, and go to The Beatles Museum and tour in Liverpool.

Currently there are 15 spots left on the tour, with seven people already signed up.

The trip is scheduled for Sep. 26 through Oct. 7, 2019.

Thompson said that the tour price increases mid-May.

For more information or to register for the tour, contact Thompson at or on Facebook at Dawn Jackson Thompson.