A More Detailed Itinerary Will Be Released In November
Be a part of a small group of 10-12 travelers on a delightful visit to Dublin and a ramble through The Gems of Ireland. Forget those big bus Ireland tours, get the real Irish experience on this small group tour. We get out into the countryside, staying in charming B&B's, guest houses, and lodges full of Irish spirit and friendliness.
Dublin: Enjoy professionally guided tours of Dublin. Our guide is a local Dubliner and no doubt will take us to his favorite neighborhoods, markets, and friendly meeting spots. It's a great start to this Ireland tour with smartly planned programmed activities as well as plenty of free time to explore on your own. Here is a quick overview of our time in Dublin:
- Day 1: Arrive in Dublin and check in at the Brooks Hotel. This evening, meet our guide, Mark Doherty, for a get-to-know-you dinner at the Brooks Hotel.
- Day 2: In the morning, Mark will do a drive to the most important sites in Dublin. That afternoon, we will visit the center of town, including St. Patrick's Cathedral, Trinity University and Temple Bar.
- Day 3: A day on your own. There is plenty to do. We highly recommend the absolutely amazing EPIC Irish Emigration Museum. Perhaps a visit to the Guinness Storehouse is your preference. There are museums, shopping, traditional pubs, all over town.
The Gems of Ireland: The only way to see the true beauty of Ireland is to go to those remote places the big bus tours cannot get to. We travel there and stay at the small but elegant family-owned inns and hotels for the full Irish treatment. Here is a brief overview:
- Day 4: Depart Dublin and drive to Belfast in Northern Ireland. A tour of "The Troubles of Belfast" offers a sobering but insightful history of the civil war between nationalist Catholics and loyalist Protestants. After lunch, visit the site where the ill-fated Titanic was built and launched.
- Day 5: The amazing work of nature, Giants Causeway, is on display. Dunluce Castle is ready for your camera. Travel through the striking Derry "Bogside" and Baresmore Gap to Donegal.
- Day 6: A boating excursion around Slieve League Cliffs (three times higher than the Cliffs of Moher), a road trip through the Glen of the Swans. Donegal is known for quality wool products, authentic pubs, and good food.
- Day 7: Travel further down the Wild Atlantic Way, a spectacular coastal route. Enjoy a fascinating sheep dog demonstration. Glide through the landscape with mountains, waterfalls, and rivers in the background. Westport is a truly incredible town with talented craftspeople, great food, traditional Irish music and spirit.
- Day 8: Connemara is full of stunning beauty. Kyelmore Abbey is perhaps the finest mansion in all of Ireland. There are fjords, waterfalls, and the greenest valleys you have every seen.
- Day 9: The town of Cong was made famous by the John Wayne/Maureen O'Hara film, "The Quiet Man". Saturday is the perfect day to be in Galway - there is an incredible amount of street fairs, buskers, music-filled pubs and activities.
- Day 10: We get to the Cliffs of Moher before the big busses arrive to enjoy the serenity of this wonder of nature. Travel by ferry across the Shannon River to vist the "hidden" Carrigafoyle Castle and then arrive in the most Irish of towns, Dingle.
- Day 11: No need for a bus today. Explore the quirky back streets, little (and big) pubs, colorful locals, crystal cutters, and terrific restaurants. Do yourself a favor and wander into the Dingle Pub tonight for a not-to-be-forgotten Irish sing-a-long.
- Day 12: At Killarney National Park, all travelers enjoy a jaunting cart (horse and carriage ride) around the beautiful grounds. Muckross Abbey is a spectacular residence from days gone by. We guarantee you will spot a leprechaun when visiting the falling waters of Torc. End the day in the relaxing seaside of Cobh.
- Day 13: No trip to Ireland is complete without a visit to the Rock...the Rock of Cashel, that is. Then it is off to Kilkenny Castle for more history of medeival Ireland.
- Day 14: We venture north towards Dublin stopping at the megalithic tomb of Brownshill Dolmen. As we arrive closer to Dublin we cross over to Wicklow to visit Glendalough - a 6th century monastery. It is time to say goodbye as we drop travelers off at the Clayton Hotel at Dublin Airport.
- Day 15: After breakfast, a compimentary hotel shuttle will bring you to the Dublin airport.