Discover cosmopolitan Dublin, ancient Blarney Castle and soak up the beauty of Killarney. Also visit the spectacular scenery of the Dingle Peninsula, Connemara and the Giant's Causeway. Start your tour in Dublin where you can explore the city center.
View the best of Ireland on this 12 day (11 night) Irish Odyssey Escorted Tour.
See Ireland's Capital City Dublin, Blarney Castle, Blarney Woollen Mills, The Rock of Cashel, Killarney, the Ring of Kerry, the Cliffs of Moher and much much more.
Visit historic Dublin Castle and Trinity College, kiss the Blarney Stone and see the spectacular and awe inspiring Cliffs of Moher. Enjoy our traditional Irish music and dance as well as a medieval banquet will give you a taste of Ireland and whet your appetite for a return visit!
Overnights for this tour:
Day 1: Dublin Tour & Kilmainham Gaol
Upon arriving in Ireland at Dublin Airport, you will start your tour with a group transfer from the airport to your hotel between 7:00 am and 12:00 noon. If your flight arrives later however transfer to the hotel will be at your own expense. At 2:00 pm you will join a local guide on a tour of Dublin. Here you will be shown the many highlights of the capital from Trinity College, General Post Office, St. Patrick’s Cathedral and the Famine Memorial. You will take a visit to Kilmainham Gaol where many of Ireland’s patriotic and nationalist rebel leaders, including Robert Emmett, Eamon DeValera and Padraig Pearse, were imprisoned in their fight for Irish independence throughout the centuries. Afterwards in the evening you will meet your tour director and get to know you travel companions over a welcome drink.
Day 2: Russborough House & Taylors Three Rock Pub
This morning drive through the delightful scenery of the Wicklow Mountains to Blessington, taking in the delightful scenery of the Wicklow Mountains ont the way. At Blessington you will get a guided tour of stately Russborough House, a Palladian mansion that is filled with interesting treasures and many noted works of art including some early photographic collections. Afterwards the afternoon you are free to do what you wish, such as using your independent open-top bus tour voucher with a visit to Guinness or Jameson. Afterwards in teh evening head to Taylor's Three Rock Pub for dinner with traditional music, dancing and songs. (B, D)
Day 3: Farmhouse visit & House of Waterford Crystal
Travel through Kildare, which is known for its horse breeding. Visit a traditional farmhouse where you will meet the owners and learn about country living whilst relaxing with home made scones. Onwards to nearby Waterford you will then get a tour the House of Waterford Crystal and watch glass blowing and cutting witnessing firsthand how they make the magnificent trophies. Later on you will continue on your journey heading along the southwest coast to Cork taking a brief walking tour of the city with a local guide. (B, D)
Day 4: Blarney Castle & Killarney
Start your day with a local guide on a brief walking tour of Cork and the English Market. A few miles outside Cork, visit the famous Blarney Castle and climb to the battlements to kiss the famous Blarney Stone or Stone of Eloquence as it is also named. Also worth a visit is the Blarney Woollen Mills where you can find great gifts to bring home including Irish-made goods of all types. Drive through the southern counties of Cork and Kerry along to the colorful town of Kenmare. Stop at Moll’s Gap for a great view of part of the Ring of Kerry and watch trained dogs herding sheep. Check in to your hotel where you can relax and unwind before dinner. (B, D)
Day 5: Dingle Peninsula Tour & Killarney
In Killarney you can take a traditional horse-drawn jaunting car ride to Ross Castle to see Lough Leane, the largest of Killarney’s famous lakes. Then you will travel to the beautiful Dingle Peninsula to experience the magnificent landscape of heathery mountains, sandy beaches and rocky headlands before stopping briefly in the town of Dingle to enjoy a spot of lunch. After a visit to Dingle town you will continue to the Blasket Centre in Dunquin where you will learn about life on the offshore Blasket Islands, which were inhabited until 1953 by local hardy farming and fishing families. Afterwards you will return to Killarney where you can relax, eat out and shop.
Day 6: Cliffs of Moher & Galway
Sample tea and scones in a pub in the town of Listowel which is a town associated with the writer, J.B Keane. Next travel north and cross the wide River Shannon Estuary by ferry and drive along the coast of County Clare. Here you can witness the power of the famous Cliffs of Moher, which rise 700 feet above the wild Atlantic Ocean. Drive upwards along the coastline till you reach Galway for a panoramic tour before checking in to your hotel for the evening overlooking Galway Bay. (B, D)
Day 7: “Quiet Man” Walk & Connemara
Drive to Cong in Galway where "The Quiet Man" film was made in 1952. A guided walk will show you places that were featured in the production. Travel through the spectacularConnemara for sweeping views of misty mountains and shimmering lakes. Next stop off at Kylemore Abbey for a walk through the elegant mansion which is set beside a tranquil, peaceful lake. Enjoy a casual spot of lunch and watch crystal cutting at Connemara Celtic Crystal before returning to Galway. (B, L)
Day 8: Country Life Museum & Belleek China
Today you will travel north to Castlebar and the Museum of Country Life which will shows you articles used in everyday life during the 19th and early 20th centuries. Continue to County Sligo home of Yeats where you will pause in Drumcliffe Churchyard to look at the grave of the writer, W. B. Yeats. Onwards and upwards, you will follow the shoreline of Donegal Bay to visit the Belleek Pottery Factory. Here craftspeople will demonstrate how they shape and decorate clay into delicate pieces. Continue your drive through the majestic Barnesmore Gap to Derry in Northern Ireland. (B, D)
Day 9: Derry Walk & Giant’s Causeway
In Derry you will join a local guide for a walking tour around the ancient city witnessing sights such as the Guildhall, St. Columb’s Cathedral, the Diamond and the 16th century walls. Visit the award-winning Tower Museum and stop for photos at the ruined Dunluce Castle. Explore the famous geographical feature, the Giant's Causeway, huge hexagonal basalt columns that were formed over 60 million years ago. These oversized rocks have given rise to many legends. See turf cutting at Shean's Heritage Farm and return to Derry for some free time.(B, D)
Day 10: Titanic Belfast & Cabra Castle
Next on the itinerary is a drive to Belfast for a panoramic city tour. After the city tour you can visit Titanic Belfast and learn about the famous liner through state-of-the-art displays. Later travel to Kingscourt built in 1760 which is your castle hotel for the night. Arrive here mid-afternoon and you can really enjoy the delights of this lovely property and maybe if you have time to play the 9-hole golf course. You will be served dinner in the Court Restaurant where afterwards you will be entertained with a display of Irish step-dancing. (B, D)
Day 11: Megalithic Tombs & Historic Drogheda Walk
After the delights of Belfast and the Kingscourt Hotel its down south to Meath and a visit to the Boyne Valley Visitor Centre. Here you will learn about the famous 5,000-year-old burial tombs of Newgrange and Knowth. Tour one of them and see how our primitive Irish ancestors managed to align huge boulders precisely. Afterwards continue on to Drogheda, a town that was besieged by Oliver Cromwell and his army in 1649 with the deaths of 2,000 people. This massacre is one of many atrocities committed that make Cromwell the most hated man in Irish history. As well as learning about Cromwell you will join a local guide for a walking tour to see the head of St. Oliver Plunkett, who was the first Irishman to be canonized in 700 years. On this tour you will also checkout the 14th century St. Laurence Gate in the medieval walls. In the evening you can enjoy a farewell dinner with live music at Wm Cairnes Gastropub which is located in a former brewery. (B, D)
Day 12: Tour Ends in Drogheda
The tour ends after breakfast. Drogheda is 30 miles norh of Dublin Airport.
B=Breakfast, D=Dinner, L=Lunch