The Edinburgh Festival 2018

Join us in 2018 for Scotland’s crowning artistic celebration – the Edinburgh International Festival – where opera, music and theatre bring creative festivity to the Scottish capital.

Spend eight full days in the heart of Edinburgh, attending spectacular opera works, intimate music recitals, engaging theatre and grand orchestral performances. Between performances, experience the highlights of Edinburgh with visits to the Royal Botanic Garden, Hopetoun House, the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and the Royal Yacht Britannia.

While the 2018 programme will be announced in March, previous festivals have featured the likes of Mitsuko Uchida, Daniil Trifonov, Bryn Terfel, John Eliot Gardiner, the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Barry Humphries and Sigur Rós to name but a few, and works from Sophocles to Shakespeare and Shostakovich to Sibelius.

Arrive in Edinburgh and make your way to the hotel. In the afternoon, enjoy a welcome briefing and pre-performance talk by your tour leader, Rosamund Bartlett, followed by a welcome cocktail reception.

In the evening, enjoy an opera performance in Usher Hall, Edinburgh’s Edwardian concert hall (performance to be announced in mid-March).


Today, travel to Hopetoun House, considered Scotland’s finest stately home, and once the home of the 7th Earl of Hopetoun, John Hope, the first Governor-General of Australia. Explore the interior of the house with a guided tour through its Georgian furniture, paintings and ornamentations which have remained unchanged for the last three centuries. Enjoy lunch in The Stables Tearoom, originally Hopetoun House’s 18th century stables.

After lunch, return to Edinburgh for an afternoon at leisure, before an evening music performance in Usher Hall.


This morning, attend a music performance in The Queen’s Hall. Afterwards, enjoy lunch on Edinburgh’s waterfront.

Then, visit the Royal Yacht Britannia, used by the Royal Family for over forty years. Wander at leisure through the ship’s five main desks, the Royal Apartments, crew quarters and engine room. Return to your hotel before an evening music performance.


Edinburgh International Festival
The first Edinburgh International Festival took place in 1947, with its counterpart Fringe Festival starting the same year. Founded in the wake of the Second World War “to provide a platform for the flowering of the human spirit”, the Edinburgh International Festival has grown to become one of the world’s leading international performing arts festivals, boasting a range of performances from the classical to the contemporary. Held annually for three weeks in August, the Festival brings together unique collaborations, exciting premieres and traditional masterpieces with the finest ensembles and artists from around the world for exhilarating performances and productions.

More details of the 2018 programme will be available in mid-March.

In the morning attend a performance in The Queen’s Hall. Afterwards, enjoy lunch at the Royal Botanic Garden, before a guided tour of the gardens. Originally established in 1670 as a ‘physic garden’ (garden of medicinal plants), the Royal Botanic Garden today encompasses thirty hectares of landscaped gardens and greenhouses.

In the evening, attend a music performance in Usher Hall.


This morning, attend a music performance in The Queen’s Hall. The remainder of the day is at leisure to enjoy Edinburgh at your own pace.

In the evening experience a theatre production in one of Edinburgh’s playhouses.


After a music performance in the morning, travel to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art for a guided tour of highlights of the gallery’s permanent collection. Housed in an imposing 19th century neo-classical building, designed by Scottish architect William Burn, the permanent collection includes early 20th century European artworks from Matisse, Picasso and Derain, alongside its renowned collection of post-war modern Scottish art.

Later, enjoy an evening music performance in Usher Hall.


This morning, attend a music or theatre performance (performance to be advised).

The remainder of the day is at leisure, before an opera performance in the evening.


Spend a morning at leisure in Edinburgh before celebrating the conclusion of the tour with a special farewell lunch with Rosamund and fellow travellers.

In the evening return one final time to Usher Hall for a grand music performance.


Tour arrangements conclude after breakfast. Renaissance Tours or your travel agent can assist you with your flights and other travel arrangements.


Per person, twin-share (approximately)

AUD 8,950

Single Supplement* (approximately)

AUD 2,500

Deposit per person (at time of booking)

AUD 1,500

*Single travellers may request to share.
Please advise at time of booking.

Tour code


Final payment due

20 June 2018

Fitness level

Please see booking conditions for fitness level definitions.


Please contact Renaissance Tours or your travel agent for current airfares and flight reservations.


Australian and New Zealand passport holders do not require a visa to visit Scotland.

Tour price includes

  • Premium (category 1) tickets to at least 12 Edinburgh International Festival performances
  • Pre-performance talks by your tour leader, Rosamund Bartlett
  • Accommodation in a centrally-located luxury hotel with breakfast daily (B)
  • Other meals as per itinerary (to be confirmed; R = Reception, L = Lunch), including wine with welcome reception and farewell lunch
  • Comprehensive sightseeing, including local guides and entrance fees as per itinerary
  • Transportation throughout on comfortable, air-conditioned coaches
  • Gratuities for local guides and drivers
  • Hotel porterage (one piece per person)

Tour price does not include

  • International airfares (please contact Renaissance Tours or your travel agent for assistance)
  • Hotel transfers on arrival and departure
  • Items of a personal nature, including telephone, laundry, taxis, room service etc.
  • Travel insurance (a condition of travel; please contact Renaissance Tours or your travel agent for assistance)


Your hotel

Edinburgh – Radisson Blu Hotel, Edinburgh ****

Located in Edinburgh’s Old Town along the historic Royal Mile, the Radisson Blu Hotel offers guests sleek, modern rooms set inside a 16th century building. Rooms come with complimentary high-speed wireless internet and the two on-site restaurants feature seasonal Scottish ingredients and cuisine, with full Scottish breakfast served daily. Edinburgh Castle, the National Museum of Scotland and the Palace of Holyroodhouse are all within walking distance of the hotel.

NB. Hotel of a similar standard may be substituted