September 4-14, 2013
The bi-lingual (French and Italian) Aosta Valley, on the southern, sunny side of Mt. Blanc, offers multiple opportunities to go off the beaten path to experience the grandeur of the snow-capped western Alps, dramatic cascades, ancient villages, Roman ruins, delicious regional cuisine, and easy walks along crystal clear streams and through pristine woodlands and rich pastures—from just two hotel “bases’, with four or five nights at each.
If you have any questions about this tour, please call Travel Designs directly at 607-587-8324, or e-mail: email@example.com
July 20-26, 2014
Join us at the Reading Program for a week combining preparatory lectures at Reading with an extended visit to York and its surroundings!
The history of the England has left rich and fascinating traces that shape the country to this day. In few places are these layers of history as visible and well-preserved as in the city of York. The inner city is still circled by the old city walls, dating from between the 1240s and the 1340s, dominated by the largest Gothic cathedral north of the Alps, and riddled with streets and alleys dating back to Roman and Viking times. An unusually high concentration of medieval buildings nestle either side of narrow streets, interspersed with examples from every significant architectural style of the last centuries, not to mention an astonishing number of very old churches, some of which trace their origins back to the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine – declared emperor in York in AD306.
Starting as a roman garrison town in AD71 and becoming the capital of the Lower Brittania in about AD213, York was eventually raided and then settled by the Vikings. Following the Norman Conquest in 1066, William the Conqueror established two great fortresses in York; the remains of one still stands. York played a significant role in the War of the Roses during the fifteenth century. Henry VIII visited York during his Pilgrimage of Grace of 1536-37, and ruins in both York and the surrounding countryside still bear witness to Henry’s Dissolution of the Monasteries. During the English Civil War, Charles I established his court there for six months in 1642. In the 19th century York was at the forefront of the expanding railway industry, and now houses the National Railway Museum. Another – perhaps unlikely – major industry was confectionary; by 1908 chocolate was the second largest employer in York after the railways, leading some to point out that on certain days York literally smells of chocolate! Beyond the urban environment, travel in Yorkshire quickly brings one into contact with the bleakness of the moors that inspired so many English artists, the Brontë sisters amongst them. This is just a taste of what is here to explore, so watch for further details about how to join this exciting tour!
For more information on this trip, please contact the Office of Alumnae and Alumni (434) 947-8102.