Top Viewed Tours of 2017

As we near the end of 2017, we’re taking time to reflect on another fantastic year and what an honour it has been to take so many of you on wonderful holidays.

And we’re thrilled that, with all the hard work of our teams at Leger HQ and, of course, our coach crews and guides out on the road, we’ve helped create incredible memories and a lasting impressions, as you voted us the Best Medium Coach Holiday Company for the second year running at the British Travel Awards.
But, we couldn’t round off the year without giving you the rundown of our most viewed tours on of 2017. So, without further ado, if you’re on the lookout for holiday inspiration or just wanting to know if your favourite tour made it onto our list, here’s what really caught your eye this year…

10. The Beauty of Lake Como and Lake Maggiore

The third largest lake in Italy, and the first of four Italian tours to make it onto our list. But it’s not just our customers who love Lake Como, it’s also a hit with George Clooney, Madonna and Richard Branson.
Lake Como

9. Picturebook Norway – Fjordland Spectacular

Our dream tour seems to be your dream tour, too. With our first departure sold out and our 2019 dates now on sale, the Norway effect is still in full swing.
Norwegian Fjords

8. Splendours of Paris

Paris is always a good idea, and it seems that’s something we can all agree on! The romantic capital city of France comes in at a respectable 8th on our list.
Paris 2017

7. All Quiet on the Western Front

A perfect WW1 Battlefields experience for first-timers and experienced travellers, 2017 has certainly captured your interest of visiting the Western Front.
Tyne Cot Cemetery

6. Lake Garda, Venice and Verona

The mighty Lake Garda, incredible Venice and the home of Romeo and Juliet, Verona, this is three world-class destinations in one impressive tour, we’re not surprised to see this tour make it into our top 10.
Venice 2017

5. Picturebook Italy

A Leger Holidays favourite, Picturebook Italy, of course, makes its way into our top 5. Well, a holiday visiting the best that Italy has to offer, it’s bound to happen.

4. The Wonders of Rome & Pompeii

Italy still seems to be a big hitter in 2017, but the Wonders of Rome & Pompeii comes out top of the Italian pickings. And it’s no wonder when Rome alone attracts around 7 – 10 million tourists each year.
Trevi Fountain, Rome 2017

3. Dutch Bulbfields & the Delights of Amsterdam

Tulip mania lives on! In 2017, the beautiful Dutch Bulbfields really caught your attention, or is it the visit to Amsterdam? Either way, a trip to Holland doesn’t get much better than this.
Dutch Bulbfields

2. D-Day Landings in Normandy

Taking the hypothetical silver medal in 2017, our D-Day Landings in Normandy tour narrowly missed out on the top spot. But, with the recent launch of our D-Day 75th Anniversary tour, could it snag the top spot next year? We’ll have to wait and see.
Pegasus Bridge

1. Nashville, New Orleans & Elvis Presley’s Memphis

And with over 300 tours to choose from, for the third year running, our most viewed tour is our Nashville, New Orleans & Elvis Presley’s Memphis tour. Whether you’re an Elvis fan, a music buff in general or just fancy a visit to America’s Deep South, we seem to have got it right with this one.
New Orleans 2017
From everyone at Leger Holidays, we wish you a very happy New Year!

The Weird and Wonderful: Superstitions of Europe

Black cats, horse shoes and not walking under ladders, we’ve all encountered some strange superstitions in our lifetime, and whether you believe in them or not, when Friday the 13th comes around, you can never be too careful.

But, it’s not just here in the UK that we’ll try out little techniques to try our luck, our European neighbours are just as superstitious. But, you guessed it, they’re completely different to ours. So, in honour of this day, why not delve deep into the superstitions of Europe?


Here we are, worrying about what Friday the 13th can bring, but our Spanish friends are more than likely left scratching their heads, because they believe that Tuesday the 13th is the unluckiest of days.
Tuesday, or Martes in Spanish, is a word derived from the name Mars, which in the middle ages was called ‘Little Evil’. Mars is also the God of War and Destruction, therefore Tuesday is ruled by Mars – and to think we dread Mondays.
But, on Tuesday the 13th, the consensus is Spain is to not get married or board a ship or a plane, as luck may not be in your favour.


Spilling wine on any day would be considered bad luck, especially if it’s been a bad day already, but not in Portugal. It’s thought to actually bring happiness to the whole table if you topple your tipple.
But, walking backwards is a no-go. They say that by doing so, you’re teaching the devil the way you’re walking. Also, your left foot is said to be unlucky, so you should always enter someone’s house with your right.


Ward away the bad luck in Norway by setting a bowl of porridge outside the door. Why, you ask? It’s said to sweeten the old, small barn trolls. And, if it’s a nice day in Norway, don’t whistle towards the sun, it’s said to bring rain.
And, maybe a superstition we can believe in… apparently if there’s ice on the lakes on May Day, then spring will be late. Which, we think is a fairly good observation, given may day is actually in spring.


The Italians are particularly fond of their superstitions. For a start, if you hear a cat sneeze, expect good luck to be coming your way.
But, interestingly enough, the number 13 is actually considered to be good luck in Italy! But, the number 17… not so much. Friday the 17th is an unlucky day, some Alitalia planes don’t have a row 17 and hotels can skip out the 17th floor all together.
It all comes from the roman numerals for 17, XVII. Change it anagrammatically to VIXI which translates in Latin to ‘I have lived’. Or, looking at it a little more objectively ‘My life is over’. We’ll give them that one, that is pretty spooky.

Czech Republic

In the Czech Republic, throwing a shoe over your shoulder and smashing a glass is meant to be good luck, although, maybe not for the people around you at the time…
But, it’s also custom for brides to smash a plate on their wedding day and have their groom clear it up. The fragments are distributed to the guests and the newlyweds keep a piece for themselves. Quite the unusual favour.
But, on the other side, pouring beer into an old glass isn’t quite so prosperous, especially if it has the remnants of another type of beer in it. That’s said to be very unlucky, and maybe not as refreshing.

One thing is for sure, strange customs and cultures make for some interesting and exciting places to visit. Have you heard any unusual superstitions on your travels?

The 10 Most Beautiful Places in the World

Beauty – it’s in the eye of the beholder, is skin deep and can be subjective, we know, we know…  But, it’s hard to deny that there are some destinations in this world that are drop dead gorgeous!

And, who would we be to keep all this beauty to ourselves? Of course we want to share it all with you, so whether you’re looking for a little pick me up or some hearty travel inspiration, here’s our list of the top 10 most beautiful places in the world.

1. The Norwegian Fjords

Is there anything more dramatic than a Fjord? Sheer cliffs tumbling down to sea waters with cascading waterfalls either side of a narrow channel of water. As valleys go, these are pretty impressive.
The contrast of the green slopes and the deep blue of the waters below, with a dusting of white with the snow-capped tops… we can categorically say that we do not agree with the old ‘blue and green should never be seen’ saying… in terms of travel at least… we’re not fashion experts.
The National Geographic Magazine awarded the Fjords ‘The Best Unspoiled Travel Destination in the World’, something we whole-heartedly agree with.

2. Venice

Who doesn’t want to visit Venice? Well, if you are one of those people, we think it’s time to rethink. Stunning architecture, canals instead of roads, some of the most iconic views in Europe… and Gondolas! It’s easy to see why so many people call for the charms of Venice.
In the words of Elizabeth Berkley, ‘It feels like you are transported to another time – the art, music and pure romance in the air is like no other place.’
Over 15 million visitors flock to Venice every year to see it yet it’s said to be sinking at a rate of 1-2 millimetres a year! A sad thought that global warming could eventually eradicate such an iconic part of Europe.

3. Ha Long Bay

Emerald waters, towering limestone islands topped with rainforests, of course Ha Long Bay is a popular place for travellers flying in from all over the world. It even ranks top of the list as Vietnam’s number one tourist spot.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site looks like something straight from a film, and funnily enough, it is. Recently featuring in the films Pan (2015) and the soon to be released Kong: Skull Island (2017) and even going back to James Bond: Tomorrow Never Dies (1997), we’d say the ethereal setting is the real star of the show.

4. Banff National Park

Canada’s oldest national park, nestled in the famous Rocky Mountains, is something that dreams are made of. Snow-capped peaks, stunning blue waters and luscious green foliage, and we can assure you, the postcard worthy photographs you see, are certainly not Photoshopped.
It’s also the perfect place to attract some of Canada’s most interesting wildlife. The moose, the elk and even the grizzly and black bear call Banff home thanks to its variations in elevation, climate, and plant communities.
More than 4 million visitors travel to Banff National Park each year to visit the mountains that range from 45 to 120 million years old. Pretty impressive, we’re sure you’ll agree.

5. Oia

Oh Santorini, the ‘poster-island’, so-to-speak, of Greece. Even if you didn’t know, you’ve probably seen it. You can pick up postcards of its white-washed buildings clinging to a cliff edge in just about any Greek island.
But, seeing really is believing, and heading to the famous Cyclades Island is a must if you’re looking for absolute heart-warming beauty.
And where better to get an eyeful of the islands beauty than visiting Oia? Famous for its small village charm, it even offers once of the best sun sets in Europe! And, it’s easily accessible from Fira, the islands capital, making it a great stop off if you’re sailing into the island on a cruise.

6. Isle of Skye

The largest island of the Inner Hebrides, the Isle of Skye shows us that we don’t have to leave our shores to find one of the world’s most beautiful spots.
Its rugged landscapes and spectacular scenery make it one of Scotland’s most popular tourist destinations, but it’s not just a pretty face.
The island has a rich history from the Jacobite rebellion, Clan Warfare and ‘Bonnie Prince Charlie’, it’s even known for producing some pretty impressive dinosaur fossils! But not just that, the wildlife on offer is just as impressive.
Otters, seals, whales, dolphins and red deer can all be seen in and around Skye, only adding to the spectacular beauty on offer.

7. Milford Sound

Half a world away but always worth the miles covered to get there. Milford Sound is a stunning fiord on New Zealand’s South Island that is home to Dolphins, Penguins and seals.
Mountain peaks reach as high as 1000ft, it’s considered New Zealand’s most stunning natural attraction, famous for its ink-like waters and cascading forests, if this isn’t on your bucket list, it should be.
And the best thing? You don’t have to worry about the weather. We can’t fault a sunny day, but the best weather to view the sound in is actually rain! The granite peaks and no beaches mean the cliffs don’t absorb water, resulting in some pretty spectacular waterfalls.

8. Bryce Canyon

We’ve all heard of the Grand Canyon and many people have been there, seen it and purchased the souvenir t-shirt. But, we think that Bryce Canyon is more deserving of a place on this list.
With the largest collection of Hoodoos (oddly shaped pillars of rock left standing as a result of erosion) in the world, the canyon is a sight to behold. In fact, Ebenezer Bryce, who the spot was named after, is thought to have said ‘It’s a hell of a place to lose a cow’… a ‘moo’-ving sentiment.
On a good day, when visibility is clear, views of the canyon can spread for over 100 miles, deep into Colorado! And, interestingly, Bryce Canyon isn’t actually a canyon – it’s a natural amphitheatre! Either way, we’d echo the thought that it really is stunning… stunning… stunning…

9. Lake Bled

It’s got to be said, that beauty lies within Lake Bled! Slovenia isn’t one of the most famous tourist destinations in Europe, but this pretty little lake certainly makes visiting more than worthwhile.
The lake is one of the warmest alpine lakes, sitting at a pleasantly warm 26°C, and it’s tiny, tear shaped island is the only natural island in Slovenia! The church that sits on the island dates back from the 17th century, but we digress…
Just look at it! As lakes go, it’s so spectacularly beautiful, we just had to put it pride of place on our list.

10. Angkor Wat

Last, but by certainly no means least, we had to mention Angkor Wat. The largest religious monument in the world, you can be sure it’s every bit as breath-taking as you’d imagine.
Paramount Pictures even paid $10,000 a day to film in the temple Ta Promh for the Lara Croft: Tomb Raider film, which led to the films lead actress, Angelina Jolie, to adopting her Cambodian son, Maddox.
The UNESCO World Heritage site’s name translates to the ‘City of Temples’ with new structures and ruins being discovered almost every year. Impressively, it was built without the aid of machinery, just the help of approximately 1000 elephants.

Would you add any other destinations to our list? Let us know in the comments where you think the world’s most beautiful place lies.

Norway? Nor-way Would You Want to Miss This One.

There are a few things that may spring to mind when you think or Norway. Cold? Snow? Northern Lights? You’d be forgiven if so. But, we’re thinking of something a little different.

What we’re proposing might just come as a bit of a surprise… we’re saying summertime, lush scenery and the mighty Fjordland! And, possibly the most incredible summer holiday you’ve ever had.
Norway is host to our brand new summertime tour in 2018, with our Picturebook Norway tour setting off on its maiden voyage.
This fantastic holiday is actually the brain child of our Dream Tour Competition winner, Sue Godwin. But, we agree completely with her sentiments and are proud to call this, not only Sue’s, but our dream tour.


Why? You ask. Well, let us tell you just why a holiday to the Norwegian Fjords is the ideal summertime break.
Firstly, it’s not as cold as you think. The weather is surprisingly good!
In fact, from late June to early August, the weather is at its most stable and it’s not unusual for temperatures to reach 25°C and above. The days are sunny and bright and there’s plenty of daylight – perfect to see the Fjordland, in all of its beauty.

Kjosfossen Waterfall

And, the favourable weather conditions actually give life to some of Norway’s most fruitful areas, producing an array of berries, vegetables and fruits.

Tasty tip: The combination of the water, the steep mountains, deep fjords and the heat from the sun help the Norwegians create some of the tastiest, locally produced juices in the world. The perfect way to quench your thirst on a warm, summer’s day.

In Fjord Norway sunsets and sunrises, dawn and dusk last longer than at more southern latitudes. And, with nice weather and plenty of daylight, you have the perfect ingredients to enjoy a fantastic stretch of sightseeing.

Summertime Dusk in the Fjords

And, what better way to see the stunning fjords than on the Flåm railway? Dubbed the world’s most beautiful train journey, and one of the most popular tourist attractions in Norway, you can enjoy a magical journey from sea level at the Sognefjord to the Myrdal Mountain station – an impressive 867 metres high!

The Flam Railway

But, that’s not all. It’s also one of the steepest rail ways in the world with over 80 percent of the journey at a gradient of 5.5%, and whilst you can imagine that the view just from that would be pretty spectacular, there’s even a sprinkling of stunning waterfalls to make the journey even more special – it’s a real crowd pleaser and a journey you will never forget.
With the help of calmer weather you can find in the summertime, it gives you the perfect opportunity to get out and really get to know the Fjords.
Sognefjord is the longest and deepest Fjord in Norway – and the most famous in Norway. Its popular arm, Nærøyfjord, actually has a UNESCO World Heritage status and, alongside the Geirangerfjord, it has been rated the world’s number one heritage site – and yes, you will see them all on our Picturebook Norway tour, so don’t forget your camera.


Whilst you may think the above alone seems like a pretty epic trip, there’s even more to see in the Fjordlands. The stunning Vøringfoss waterfall, the Bøyabreen glacier and the Hardanger Nature Museum, to name but a few. If nature is your thing, just think of the joy Norway will bring.
Leaving the Fjords, there’s still a lot more to Norway to keep that smile on your face! Its delightful towns and impressive cities offer plenty, even to the hardest to impress. From Bergen to the mighty Oslo, summertime really shines a light on these pretty spectacular destinations.
Full of history, and beaming with natural beauty, Norway’s second city, Bergen, is a true delight. The colourful facade of Bryggen is by far the most iconic sight you’ll see in the city, and it sure is beautiful.

Bryggen, Bergen

The Hanseatic Wharf is a great stop off point for a meal or a snack in the cafes and restaurants, enjoy a spot of shopping, or even just to enjoy the view.
Hot-footing it into Oslo, you’ll get time to enjoy the delightfully modern and diverse capital city and all the frills that come with it. A shopper’s paradise, a hub for culture and history and nature right at your fingertips.
Head down to the waterfront area where you can enjoy great bars, cosy cafes and fine restaurants, and enjoy the view over the Barcode’s skyscrapers, a delight to anyone with an interest in architecture.

Oslo Waterfront

With a host of interesting restaurants and cafes, and with the strikingly modern opera house sitting on the water’s edge, the enchanting juxtaposition between Oslo’s new and old will be one of the defining memories of your holiday.
In conclusion, one thing is for sure, we could write a book on Norway and still feel like the words would still not do it justice. As they say, seeing is believing, and if you fancy the trip of a lifetime to the beautiful Norwegian Fjordland, find out more about our Picturebook Norway tour, right here.

The Dream Tour, Picturebook Norway: Words from our Winner

When we originally asked you to put together your perfect European holiday, as part of our Dream Tour Competition, even we couldn’t have predicted the overwhelming response. With such an exciting array of dream tours that were entered into this amazing competition, picking a winner was difficult.

But, there was one tour that really stood out to us. With an itinerary taking in some of the most spectacular sights of Scandinavia, the Fjordland adventure really stole our heart. And, the decision was made. The wheels were in motion and we got to work on planning the dream tour; Picturebook Norway – Fjordland Spectacular.
Sue Godwin’s dream holiday was a reality, and whilst we’re super excited about Dream Tour, we couldn’t wait to find out how she felt.
So, we sent our Head of Retail Sales, Ashley, down to the South Coast to congratulate Sue in person. Here’s what she had to say about her amazing prize.

Congratulations! How did you feel when you found out you had won the big prize?

I just didn’t believe it, It was a total shock and this lasted for several weeks. I had a big smile every time I thought about it.

Geiranger Fjord

What was your inspiration behind the tour you created?

In June 2015 we went on the Arctic Circle & Land of the Midnight Sun with Leger Holidays, this was a truly amazing adventure. We visited Norway and loved it. We only had several hours in Oslo and went on a brilliant tour and wanted to go back and spend more time here and particularly visit the Kon Tiki museum.  I wanted to spend longer in each place, be able to settle into a hotel for two or more nights rather than a different hotel each night. To see plenty; but at a more relaxed pace.
I have always wanted to see the Norwegian Fjords but a cruise with a large amount of people never appealed to me. So the only other option was to see them from the land side and with only a max of 40 people whom you get to know well on a 16 day trip.

Flam Railway

What are you most looking forward to on your tour?

The overnight cruise to Bergen, the trip on the Flam Railway, the friendly people, all of it; I just can’t wait. I am counting down the months!

How did you find the task of putting together a coach tour?

I knew I wanted to see the Fjords and revisit some of the elements of the previous Scandinavian trip. I plotted a route that covered the Fjords and some interesting sights and fabulous views on the way. I just picked places and looked them up online and read about them to see which ones I would most like to visit.


Have you chosen the lucky person who will be travelling with you to Norway?

I certainly have, my best friend, Jo, who accompanied me on the Arctic Circle & Land of the Midnight Sun.

What would you say to people to get them to join you on your tour?

Scandinavia is an adventure, incredible views and fabulous people. The Leger drivers are always amazing. The food at the hotels on the previous trip was plentiful and delicious. We loved the comfort of the coach and watching the world go by. There was never a dull moment, always something of interest to see. I am sure this trip will be more of the same and the views of the Fjords, glaciers & wildlife will be spectacular. The full day cruise will give everyone the opportunity to see the Fjords and surrounding area from the more conventional way. The Flam Line is rated as one of the most beautiful train journeys and sure to be a highlight of the trip.
Take a look at the winning itinerary and book your place on the Dream Tour, here.

Boyabreen Glacier

7 of the Strangest Easter Traditions around Europe

We’ve hit the time of the year that we’re bombarded with chicks, Easter bunnies and enough chocolate eggs to keep even the most indulgent chocoholic happy for a few years.

It’s something that we’ve become accustomed to, with most of us expecting Easter eggs in the shops as soon as the Christmas decorations have come down, but it’s not the same across the globe. Even our European neighbours have their own ways of celebrating Easter. So, while we’re tucking into our Easter eggs this weekend, here’s what our European friends will be doing to celebrate.
little girl standing by Easter tree


Germans prefer to use their eggs to decorate trees as part of the Sommertagszug festival. Although it’s held three weeks before Easter Sunday, Sommertagszug is still deemed an Easter celebration and is probably one of the most important holidays of the year in Germany.
Locals come out in their droves to officially welcome summer and tell winter that it’s time to take a hike. As well as the Easter tree, the festival also uses an Easter bonfire for a ceremonial burning of a specially made winter tree and a snowman. Not only is it a unique start to Easter celebrations, it’s certainly an extravagant way of welcoming the summer months in.


The Franconian Swiss, the people of Franconia in Northern Bavaria, focus their celebrations around water. Water, as we know, is a life source and since Easter is about celebrating life, they decorate their wells with Easter eggs, spring flowers and ribbons to celebrate the gift of life that the well provides them with.
They’re said to be not so fond the Easter Bunny too, however, the children don’t miss out. The Easter Cuckoo delivers Easter eggs instead.
Scrambled eggs for a big omelet


Now, forget about the chocolate egg, the French stick to the usual kind. In a tradition that supposedly goes all the way back to Napoleon.
In Haux, France, the residents celebrate Easter Monday by making an omelette of epic proportions. We’re talking 4,500 eggs in this recipe, several chefs armed with wooden paddles to make it and a giant skillet to cook it in.
Once cooked, the hungry residents can tuck in and enjoy their Easter omelette. It’s certainly a way to avoid a subsequent chocolate sugar rush.
Buckets of water for drinking horses


You may not have heard of it, but Smigus-Dyngus is a Polish Easter tradition you won’t forget in a hurry.
On Easter Monday, young boys gather with the intention of soaking girls in water. Buckets, water pistols and just about any other vessel can be used to partake in this game.
Although it may sound like an over the top water fights, the tradition had its origins in the baptism of Polish Prince Miezko on Easter Monday 966 AD.
Legend has it that if a girl gets soaked during Smigus-Dyngus, she will be married within the year. Let’s hope it’s a warm Easter in Poland this year.
Lamb cake


Come Easter time, shops in the UK are filled with arrays on chocolate treats in many shapes and sizes so a chocolate bunny certainly wouldn’t look out of place. Russians, however, prefer to have their treats to look like lambs. And they hold back on the chocolate too.
Yes, their Easter lamb treat is made out of butter. Russians believe that lambs are lucky as they’re the only animal that the devil couldn’t transform into. It certainly sounds calorific, but possibly not as tempting as a chocolate egg.
Screenplay close-up 2 (generic film text written by photographer


In Norway, Easter is a popular time for people to divulge in a little crime fiction. So much so that publishers actually bring out Easter Thriller Specials.
Known locally as Paaskekrimmen, the tradition is said to have begun in 1923 when a book publisher promoted their new crime thriller on the front pages of the newspapers over Easter. It’s said that the adverts resembled news stories so much, people didn’t realise it was a publicity stunt. Ever since the taste for Crime Fiction has stood firm over this holiday in Norway.
So, how will you be spending your Easter bank holiday?

9 of the Spookiest Places in Europe – Happy Halloween

Ever wondered where the scariest, spookiest and most haunted places are in Europe? Does the idea of chasing ghost and ghouls sound like the perfect holiday? This Halloween let us take you around the continent to set the scene for the perfect ghost stories to share this All Hallows’ Eve.



The Tower of London

Regarded one of the most haunted places in Europe, the tower of London has a history going back 900 years of torture and execution. The most famous of spirits said to be wandering within the walls of this iconic building is the Ghost of Anne Boleyn. One of the fated wives of Henry the VIII, her headless body is said to have been spotted close the scene of her demise.



Chateau de Brissac, France

Built in the 11th century, this castle has spooked many a visitor. A gruesome double murder in the 15th century has left a lasting spirit roaming the halls of this magnificent castle. ‘The Green Lady’ as she is known, is said to have terrified guests with her ghoulish groan echoing around the corridors in the early hours. More terrifyingly, the guests who claim to have seen her have said her corpse-like face features holes where her eyes and nose should be.



Babenhausen Barracks, Germany

Used during multiple wars to house German soldiers whose spirits have never left. It has been claimed the ghosts of World War 2 soldiers in full military gear have been spotted as lights turn on and off by themselves and voices have been heard coming from the basement. Now a museum, soldiers that have visited have picked up a ringing telephone are said to have heard a lady talking backwards. In the town of Babenhausen rumours of a witch was burned at the stake are prominent with her ghost said to have seduced and killed several German Soldiers.



Poveglia Island, Italy

Sat in the Venetian lagoon is the small island of Poveglia. The island became populated when mainlanders fled to escape invaders. By the 14th Century the island was completely deserted, however, when the plague hit, the island was used as a quarantine colony with Venetians sent there to die. Their bodies were said to subsequently be burned on giant pyres. The site was also said to be used as a mental asylum in the 1800’s with stories of experimental procedures with stories of ill treatment and suicide rife in the city. Today, the island sits abandoned with locals daring not to set foot on the island for fear of being cursed. The ghosts of past patients are said to haunt the island with screams and voices often being heard, there has also been stories of violent possessions by evil spirits.


Edinburgh Castle, Scotland, UK, illuminated at night in the winter snow

Edinburgh Castle

An outstanding landmark, situated overlooking the city of Edinburgh. Once again the scene of many battles and tortures, it is thought to be one of the most haunted castles in the world. Visitors claim to have been touched and pulled and sightings of ghoulish figures include a headless drummer boy and a piper who had apparently got lost in the tunnels below the castle and subsequently lost his life.



Corvin Castle, Transylvania

Best known to be the home of Count Dracula but also Vlad the Impaler. Vlad was known for his excessive cruelty and his nickname ‘The Impaler’ came about as he was notorious for his practice of impaling his enemies. The Corvin Castle is said to have been where historical figure was held in captivity as strange sightings have been reported of vampire-like figures appearing in flickering candle-light.


Leap Castle

Leap Castle, Ireland

Widely regarded the most haunted castle in Ireland, it boasts a history of murders and massacres. It is said to be haunted by spirits seeking vengeance for their untimely murders. The castle is thought to have been built by the O’Carrol family who apparently had a habit of murdering people and dumping the bodies down a hole in the castle wall. Hauntings are said to take place in the ‘Bloody Chapel’ where it’s thought the murders took place.



Convent of St Agnes, Prague

Prague is said to be one of the most haunted cities in Europe and the Convent of St Agnes, situated in the world famous city, does not disappoint. Apparently haunted by the ‘Murdered Nun’, her legacy began when, as a girl, was said to be ordered to the convent by her noble father after falling in love with a poor knight. The night before she was due to leave she decided to follow her heart and met with her love. She was also met there by her father who, in a fit of rage, fatally stabbed her for shaming him. She is said to be seen in her ghostly form covered in blood and weeping bitterly.



Nidaros Cathedral, Norway

This imposing cathedral in the town of Trondheim is said to house the spirit of a Monk who has been described as a tall figure with a dark habit, a monks tonsure, glowing eyes and blood dripping from a cut in his throat. He reveals himself to church goers and is said to often sever his head from his body and walk straight through church goers.
Happy Halloween!
Fancy seeing some ghoulishly gorgeous scenery for yourself? Take a look through our European tours for a fangtastic time.

Love Scenic Cruises? We

Cruising tours with Leger

If packing your sea legs is an exciting start to a new adventure, you’re not alone. With an annual passenger growth rate of 7%, cruises are becoming an ever popular way of touring.

With a wide variety of ocean and river cruises now available, the choice of locations is a wide and varied. It’s not all about the sailing the Med and seeing coastal towns with a big enough dock, with river cruises you can get up close and personal from a different perspective inland. Even taking on the Ocean can lead you to new and exciting locations.
Cruises can really offer a fantastic adventure covering a much larger area than a coach tour and they really are a fantastic experience from start to finish.
Here’s some of our favourite Leger cruises available to book now.

Cruising the Christmas Markets of the Rhine Valley

Cologne at duskComing up shortly we will begin our Christmas Market tours, and this is one not to be missed. Cruising down the Rhine valley stopping off at the markets of Rüdesheim, Koblenz and Cologne you really will be in the Christmas spirit.
Rüdesheim is transformed from a little romantic town to a place buzzing with festive cheer. With over 120 stalls there’s plenty to do but we would suggest trying their coffee made with locally distilled Asbach Uralt Brandy, whipped cream and traditionally served in an authentic Rüdesheim coffee set. After making your way back to the ship you will be invited to the Captain’s dinner and party evening to warm up and let loose.
Kolblenz market will give you the perfect opportunity to pick up some fabulous hand-made gifts and decorations to bring home with you. There’s an array of stalls making fresh German Christmas cakes and biscuits right in front of your eyes.
And to top it off, the magical Cologne. There are several markets you can find around Cologne but the most impressive would have to be the market at Cologne cathedral. With a dramatic backdrop, there’s nothing more quintessentially German than sipping mulled wine and indulging in an unlimited array of sweets.
Click here to view this tour.

New Year Festive Celebration Rhine Cruise

Fireworks in KoblenzBringing in the New Year cruising on the Rhine River. Starting in Cologne you will board the M.S Rhine Princess for a four night cruise. You will have your chance to visit the beautiful city of Cologne. The home of the Kölner Dom, there’s plenty to see and do. You could treat yourself to a shopping spree in the elegant Belgian quarter, leave a love lock on the Hohenzollern Bridge or visit the chocolate factory to pick up some treats for your journey.
Of course, as it’s a New Year’s trip, you won’t miss the party. After cruising to the beautiful Roman town of Andernach then onto Oberwest, you will enjoy a day time coach trip to Rüdesheim then re-joining your ship in Koblenz for your Gala dinner party. You can view the fireworks in style as they light up the town around the river.
After partying the night away, you could indulge in some hair of the dog as we take an optional excursion to Moselle Valley for wine tasting at the Anton Hammes wine estate which has been family owned for over 150 years.
You will spend your last night in the town of Bonn, the former capital of West Germany. For anyone interested in classical music, Bonn is best known for being the birthplace of Beethoven. You can enjoy your final dinner before heading off home from this fantastic trip.
Click here for more information on this tour.

Iberian Peninsula Cruise & Lake Garda

MarseilleIf you’re looking a bit further ahead and a warmer climate is more your style, the Iberian Peninsula Cruise & Lake Garda cruise could be the one for you.
You will stay for ten nights cruising on the Costa Fortuna, spectacular in every detail. This superb vessel offers four restaurants and eleven bars, which include a Cognac and Cigar Bar. The ship includes a choice of swimming pools, jacuzzis, a theatre on three levels, a Casino, shops and a disco.
You will greet the Costa Fortuna in Savona for a 10 night cruise but not before you’ve stopped off at Lake Guarda for a full day tour and the beautiful city of Venice where you can enjoy the spectacular sights mentioned in our Venice blog.
The first stop on your cruise will be the beautiful town of Marseille where you can visit the Notre–Dame de La Garde and get your hands on a bar of the traditional Savon de Marseille soap, scented with lavender, verbena or honey, to take home with you as a gift or a treat for yourself.
You will then make your way to Spain stopping off at Palma de Mallorca, Malaga and Cadiz. You will then head on to Portugal where you will stop off in Lisbon where you can visit the world’s most expensive chapel, Sao Roque and head up the Santa Justa Elevator for sweeping views of the spectacular city.
Heading back through Spain, stopping off at Vigo and La Coruna, your final stop will be in La Havre in France where you can sample some famous Normandy Cider and Cheese to top off this fabulous 15 day trip.
You can view this tour here.

Norwegian Fjords Cruise

Norwegian FjordThe last of our featured cruises is certainly not least. The Norwegian Fjords Cruise. Setting sail in June, you will be taken on a breath-taking tour of western Norway.
Once again you will take sail on the Costa Fortuna
You will start off your tour with a day in Amsterdam where you can visit the fantastic museums and the world famous coffee shops. In such a vibrant city, you will wonder where the day has gone when you board the ship and head off for your Norwegian adventure.
Spring time in the Fjords is when they really come to life, as the sun starts to shine on the mountains turn spectacular colours. The temperature will typically vary between 14-16 degrees Celsius, so be sure to take some warm clothes.
You will stop off in Bergen, Hellesylt, Andalsnes, Olden, Flam and Stavenger. The Fjords are canals reaching inland from the coast where the mountains emerge from the ocean. You will sail through the fjords taking in the breath-taking natural beauty.
Be sure to take your camera on this 12 day break as the photos will be treasured for a life time.
To view the itinerary for this tour click here.

For more information and even more Leger Cruises visit our website

Be Brave With Your Breaks: Top Travel Tips from Dr David Lewis

Be Brave With Your Breaks:  Top Travel Tips from Dr David Lewis


Thinking about trying a new holiday destination – or even an entirely new type of trip – can be a big step for people.

Maybe you like to go back to the same places every year as you know you’ll have a great time. Or maybe you always like to do a cruise as that kind of holiday has worked well for you in the past.
But maybe 2013 is the year of change. You fancy being a bit more adventurous, seeing some of the ‘must-see’ sights the world has to offer. But where do you start? It can be quite intimidating trying to figure out all the places you might want to go and how to get there.
We have worked with renowned Psychologist Dr David Lewis to develop some top tips to help aspiring adventurers make their travel dreams come true:

  1. It’s all about the planning, planning, planning. Where have you always dreamt of going? What do you want to see or do when you get there? If you are undecided speak to someone who has already done it. There is safety in numbers and hearing about other people’s exploits emboldens you to do likewise.
  2. Once you’ve decided on your trip – do your homework. By learning as much as possible in advance about where you are going, you will make it more interesting, enjoyable and rewarding. And help build up the anticipation!
  3. When preparing for a holiday, or even when you are away, keep a checklist and tick off tasks and items as they are completed. This will increase your confidence and prevent slip-ups or lapses in memory.
  4. If you are going to a place where English may not be widely spoken or understood, even if you are on an escorted tour, write down a few basic phrases in that language to help you communicate. You will feel empowered by having it to hand ‘just in case’.
  5. Having to rush unnecessarily depletes energy levels and increases stress. Leave yourself plenty of time to get places or consider an escorted tour where the travel arrangements are all sorted for you, removing that element of worry.
  6. As people get older they need more ‘me time’ to collect their thoughts and increase energy levels. Try to spend at least 15 minutes a day chilling out away from too many distractions.
  7. Never say never. And don’t ever use ‘I’m too old for that’ as an excuse for not doing something you secretly long to do. At the same time be prepared to say ‘no, not for me’ if you really don’t want to undertake an activity or go to a certain destination.

So whether you secretly want to scale Mount Kilimanjaro, see the volcanoes in Italy, or you long to sail along the Fjords of Norway, we say – go for it! Those in need of some holiday inspiration can also visit our website where you’ll find plenty of great break ideas including our Grand Explorer tours to destinations such as America, Russia and the Arctic Circle.

Leger Holidays launch new Grand Explorer website

Here at Leger we are pleased to announce the launch of our new Grand Explorer website.

The site houses our great range of Grand Explorer Tours, which cover a vast array of countries and take in some simply breathtaking scenery,
These tours are carefully planned right down to the very last details; we can even pick you up from your home with our door-to-door service, so there is absolutely nothing for you to worry about.
With destinations including places such as Russia, India, China, Norway and even the Arctic Circle these tours really are not to be missed.
For more information on our tours visit our new Grand Explorer website