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Unforgettable USA trip for historians

History enthusiasts visited New York, Washington and Philadelphia during an action-packed, educational and memorable trip to the United States of America.

Upon arriving in the Big Apple, the pupils immersed themselves in the culture and liveliness of the city during a guided walking tour that took them to various famous landmarks including Times Square, the Rockefeller Centre, Fifth Avenue, Central Park and Central Station. Thomas Emery was a fan of Times Square: “I liked it because it was a really vibrant part of the city.”

Next up was a trip to the Top of The Rock – an observatory on top of the Rockefeller Centre with an ocean-liner style design that offered spectacular city views – a highlight for many of the group. Joseph Farrelly commented: “Seeing New York from The Top of The Rock gave me an idea of the scale of the city and we had some great photo opportunities,” and Lila Perkin added: “My favourite moment was when we were all at The Top of The Rock taking pictures because we could see all of New York City and it was nice being altogether.”

The following day, a trip to the Castle Clinton Building in Battery Park and a ferry journey to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty were on the itinerary in the morning. Harry Brown said: “I liked Ellis Island the most because it gave me an understanding of how New York was created,” whilst Nikita Arora stated: “The Statue of Liberty was my favourite moment because I’ve always wanted to see it, and I was very happy when I finally did.”

In the afternoon the group enjoyed a guided walking tour of Lower Manhattan, the central borough for business, culture, and government in the City of New York.

The next day, the historians were on their travels as they boarded a coach for Washington via Philadelphia. After exploring Old City Philadelphia, the group visited the Liberty Bell, an iconic symbol of American independence, and went on a guided tour of the Independence Hall before boarding the coach to Washington.

After a good night’s sleep, the travellers again boarded a coach, but this time it was to take in a guided tour that saw them visit a host of the capital’s iconic monuments including Arlington National Cemetery and the memorials of the Holocaust, World War Two, Vietnam, George Washington, Martin Luther-King and Abraham Lincoln.

Ewan Curran said: “The Holocaust Museum was insightful and taught me a lot about that period of history,” whilst Finn Morton added: “I liked the bus tour of Washington DC because we were able to see lots of historical monuments.”

The following day again saw the pupils visit many of the city’s incredible cultural hotspots. A guided tour of the Library of Congress – the largest library in the world, the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution – was swiftly followed by a trip to the National Archives. In the afternoon, their schedule saw them take in the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, home to hundreds of the world’s most significant objects in aviation and space history, and the National African American Museum, the only national museum devoted exclusively to the documentation of African American life, history, and culture.

Potomac Mills Shopping Centre was the final destination of the trip before the group boarded their flight back to England, full of memories, stories and pictures of many of America’s famous and historically important landmarks and awe-inspiring views.