9 Day - Irish Explorer - Escorted Tour
Dublin (1) - Donegal (2) - Galway (2) - Killarney (2) - Dublin (1)
- Abbey Tavern Traditional Dinner & Show
- Ulster American Folk Park
- Slieve League Sea Cliffs
- Dan O'Hara's Farm
- Ring of Kerry Tour
- Luxurious Clontarf Castle Hotel
- Sightseeing by luxury coach
- Professional driver/guide
- 8 or 9 nights in hotels listed
- Full breakfast daily (B) except on day 1
- 7 dinners (D) including
- Welcome dinner at Clontarf Castle Hotel
- Nancy’s Restaurant in Ardara
- Abbey Tavern traditional Irish dinner/show
- 4 table d'hote dinners
- 2 lunches (L)
- Welcome get-together drink
- Tour of Dublin with a local guide
- Slieve League sea cliffs followed by home-baked scones with coffee or tea
- Storytelling session in Donegal
- Dan O’Hara’s Homestead Farm
- Walking tour of Westport with a local guide
- Sheepdog trials on Ring of Kerry
- Visits and admissions to Glasnevin Museum, Ulster American Folk Park, Donegal Castle, Triona Design, Belleek Pottery Factory, W. B. Yeats’ Grave, Lissadell House, Cliffs of Moher, Foynes Flying Boat Museum, Skellig Experience, Blarney Castle and Blarney Woollen Mills
- Headsets for walking tours
- Deluxe carry-on backpack, ticket wallet, luggage tags & strap
- All local taxes, hotel service charges & porterage for one suitcase per person
- Free Wi-Fi on coaches and in hotel lobbies
Superior First Class
- Clontarf Castle Hotel, Dublin (1 night)
- Mill Park Hotel, Donegal (2 nights)
- Castle Court Hotel, Westport (2 nights)
- Killarney Avenue Hotel. Killarney (2 nights)
- Herbert Park Hotel, Dublin (1 nights)
9 Day Irish Explorer Tour Itinerary
Day 1 : Dublin Touring & Glasnevin Museum
Your Irish trip starts at 2:00 pm when you meet your tour director at your Dublin hotel. Your hotel is luxurious Clontarf Castle, which traces its origins to 1172. It is a short ride from Dublin Airport and is situated a few miles to the north of Dublin city center in an upmarket suburb. Take a tour of central Dublin to see elegant Georgian squares, public buildings and monuments. Visit Glasnevin Museum, Ireland’s national necropolis, which is a who’s who of modern Irish history and a fascinating insight into life in Ireland. It is the final resting place of Daniel O’Connell, Michael Collins, Charles Stewart Parnell, Brendan Behan and other prominent people. Enjoy a welcome drink with your tour director followed by dinner in your lovely castle hotel.
Day 2 : Ulster American Folk Museum & Donegal Castle
This morning drive north away from the city and through the heartland of Ireland to visit the Ulster American Folk Park near Omagh. Here you will see cozy cottages depicting a bygone way of life in rural Ireland with demonstrations of traditional crafts and skills, used by country people for centuries. Walk through a replica of a sailing ship and then view cabins as they would have been in colonial America when settlers traveled to Appalachia. Travel on to Donegal town for a tour of Donegal Castle, built by the O’Donnell chieftain in the 15th century. The castle is located in the central square of the town and it was expanded in the 17th century. Today it is furnished throughout in period style and a guided tour will fill you in on the history of the region. Check in to your hotel, which is located a few miles outside the town.
Day 3 : Slieve League Cliffs & Glengesh Pass
Head to the fishing port of Killybegs and on to Teelin to view Slieve League sea cliffs, where the highest point reaches 1,972 feet making them the highest in Europe. Enjoy breathtaking vistas as they drop to the wild Atlantic waves below. Sample home-baked scones with coffee or tea before continuing to Malinbeg for great views and through the majestic Glengesh Pass. In Ardara visit Triona Design to see demonstrations of spinning, weaving and knitting. Enjoy free time in Donegal town before returning to your hotel.
Day 4 : Belleek & Lissadell House
Visit the Belleek Pottery Factory to see how the craftspeople shape and decorate clay, creating the world-famous fine china. This industry was founded in the 19th century to bring employment to the region and initially they created utilitarian wares for bathrooms before developing the production of delicate and decorative pieces. Visit Lissadell House, a magnificent country estate, built in the 1830s for the Gore-Booth family. This was the childhood home of Constance Markievicz, one of the leaders of the 1916 Rising. Drive to Galway, check in to your hotel and join a local guide for a gentle walking tour around central Galway.
Day 5 : Connemara Life & Dan O' Hara Farm
Today explore scenic Connemara to admire how constantly-changing cloud formations give granite hills, sparkling lakes and peat bogs an added dimension. This region is sparsely populated as the poor land does not support farming but is home to many sheep. You will see many tracts of bogland where people cut and harvest peat for home heating. Stop at the Connemara Celtic Crystal Factory where craftsmen demonstrate fine glass cutting. Drive through the picturesque scenery of hills and lakes to visit Dan O’Hara’s Homestead. See traditional methods of farming as well as Connemara ponies and have a light lunch. Return to Galway and enjoy free time before dinner.
Day 6 : Cliffs of Moher & Foynes Flying Boat Museum
Travel around Galway Bay to view the Cliffs of Moher, an impressive wall of rock that plunges to the Atlantic Ocean. Continue to Bunratty for a brief stop at Durty Nelly's Pub or the Blarney Woollen Mill before driving through Limerick and along the Shannon Estuary. Visit the Foynes Flying Boat Museum, which recalls the early days of air travel, during the 1930’s and early 1940’s. Arrive in Killarney, check in to your hotel and relax before dinner.
Day 7 : Ring of Kerry & Skellig Experience
Take a drive around the Ring of Kerry where every bend in 100 miles of road reveals breathtaking views. Meet a local farmer, Brendan Ferris, for a taste of farm life with a sheepdog demonstration of herding flocks. At the tip of the peninsula visit the Skellig Experience, which explains the history, flora and fauna on the nearby rocky islands. Return through the attractive village of Sneem and pause at Moll's Gap for panoramic views of Killarney and its lakes. Back in Killarney enjoy free time for independent activities and dining.
Day 8 : Blarney Castle & Merry Ploughboy Pub
Drive through the mountains into richer farming country on the way to Blarney. Climb to the ramparts of Blarney Castle to kiss the famous stone or, if you don’t feel like a climb, take a gentle walk through the lovely parklands and colorful gardens. Shop for Irish-made goods at the Blarney Woollen Mills before traveling north. Pause for photos at the stately Rock of Cashel, a limestone outcrop with picturesque ruins and continue to your hotel in Dublin. In the evening head to the Abbey Tavern for Irish cuisine, traditional songs and music as well as a lively display of step dancing.
Day 9: Depart for Home
Program ends after breakfast.