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About your trip
This loop around Ireland aims to give you the complete Irish experience, covering a hatful of counties and blending ancient history with vast natural beauty and a famously friendly culture. We’ll start off in Dublin, exploring the capital’s fabled streets and learning about Irish champagne (AKA Guinness). Then we’ll head west to the Wild Atlantic Way, where a unique farm day experience awaits, along with a visit to a spectacular abandoned island. We’ll wind our way south to Cork to visit Blarney Castle and its famously smoochable stone, before winding our way back up the Irish countryside to Dublin.
- Follow in the footsteps of Oscar Wilde and James Joyce on an immersive walking tour of Dublin
- Enjoy an evening of music, dance and proper Irish craic at the Merry Ploughboy Pub
- Experience authentic rural Ireland with a unique sheep farm experience in splendid Connemara
- Explore Ireland’s ancient history at an ancient monastery and an abbey, each surrounded by stunning green countryside
- Discover the rugged beauty of Scattery Island and stop for a scenic picnic
- Visit the famous Blarney Castle and learn about its magical history – will you kiss the stone?
You made it! Make your way to the first hotel of our trip, settle in and if you have the time go for a stroll around Dublin. We’ll gather early in the evening to meet the group and our Local Insider, before whisking off to Merry Ploughboy Pub for a proper Irish welcome. This 200 year-old pub is where we’ll go for our customary welcome dinner, followed by a pint or two of Guinness and a night of traditional Irish music and dance.
After breakfast, our Local Insider will give you the ultimate guide to Dublin city centre on an immersive walking tour. You’ll be taken on a journey through the storied streets of a city famed for its friendliness, its drinking establishments and its world-renowned writers – the latter two crossover quite a bit. We’ll start at the Monument of Light, head across the River Liffey and over to Trinity College. You’ll walk down Temple Bar, see Dublin Castle and end up on St Stephen’s Green, Dublin’s largest park. After a gentle stroll or some people watching, you’ll have an afternoon to spend as you wish. We recommend heading to the Guinness Storehouse, where you can learn all about the Black Stuff and end up with a freshly pulled pint from the Gravity Bar, which boasts 360 views of the city.
After breakfast we’ll leave Dublin behind and begin our road trip by heading west. Over the course of the day we’ll cross the entire width of the Emerald Isle and reach Galway, a city on the Wild Atlantic Way. We’ll stop en route at Clonmacnoise Monastery, which is about halfway between the two cities. This 6th-century site, founded by St Ciarán on the banks of the River Shannon, is one of the most historic spots in all of Ireland. It became a great seat of learning and religious activity for centuries, and remains in surprisingly good shape today. After gaining fascinating insight into early Ireland, we’ll continue onwards to our hotel in Galway. After check-in at lunchtime and some free time in the city we’ll take a scenic drive to the beautiful village of Doolin, where you can marvel at the epic, iconic Cliffs of Moher from Doolin Pier.
In this part of the world, things don’t get more authentic than in the expansive green fields of a rural sheep farm. So, in search of the real Ireland, that’s where we’re headed this morning. We’ll visit a traditional working farm in the Connemara mountains, which has been passed down through generations. Today it is home to around 200 ewes and lambs, and we’ll start the day by meeting farmer Tom and joining him and his sheep dog to go herding. After that we’ll go for a scenic stroll through the grounds, which boasts spectacular sweeping views of Killary Fjord and the mountain ranges beyond. After that you’ll try your hand at bog-cutting with a slean (a traditional turf spade), a century-old method of harvesting peat. Leaving farmer Tom to his work, we’ll continue our exploration of Connemara with a visit to the magnificent Kylemore Abbey and Gardens. This is one of the most admired buildings in Ireland, with a neo-gothic exterior standing out against the backdrop of Connemara’s wild and beautiful mountains, woodlands and lakes.
Today is time to explore the epic coastline of the Wild Atlantic Way. Brutal and beautiful in equal measure, Ireland’s west coast is a blend of towering cliff faces, relentlessly battered by Atlantic waves, and moments of tranquility on secret beaches and uninhabited islands. We’ll head straight to Scattery Island this morning, before our journey culminates with a lovely ferry ride through the lock gates of Kilrush Marina and down the Shannon Estuary. Back on solid ground, you’ll embark on a guided walking tour with a local guide, who’ll show you an amazon 5th-century monastic site and imposing round tour. After that it’s time for a well-earned island picnic (gourmet style), as you dine al fresco with gorgeous views of the Atlantic. Refueled and ready to go, we’ll head to the south of the island for a visit to the Lighthouse, Napoleonic Artillery Battery and the homes of the final islanders who lived here, as recently as 1974. Back on the mainland, we’ll road trip south, all the way to our hotel in Cork.
This morning we visit one of the most famous places in all of Ireland – Blarney Castle. This magical old fortress is brimming with history, mystery and a fair bit of romance – you’ll embrace the latter with a chance to kiss the Blarney Stone, an act which is said to imbue you with the “gift of the gab”. After exploring the castle we’ll stop off for some free time in the city of Kilkenny, before looping up our road trip by returning to Dublin. In the capital we’ll head for a farewell dinner at Café en Seine, one of Dublin’s most iconic venues.
Sadly, our Irish odyssey has come to end back in the capital. You’ll have breakfast at the hotel and then it’s time to part ways. The question is, will you head straight to the airport or continue your Celtic adventure solo?
- Six nights boutique hotel accommodation
- Private and local transport
- Transfer to Dublin International Airport (DUB)
- Six breakfasts, two lunches, four dinners
- Local Insider
- Evening at the Merry Ploughboy Pub
- Guided walking tour of Dublin
- Visit to Clonmacnoise Monastery
- Visit to Doolin
- Visit to Sheep Farm
- Visit to Kylemore Abbey and Gardens
- Walking tour of Scattery Island
- Visit to Blarney Castle
What's Not Included
- Travel insurance
- Flights to and from the destination
The Herbert Park Hotel
This lovely independent four-star hotel gets its name from its position overlooking the luscious greenery of Herbert Park, on the south side of Dublin. The surrounding Ballsbridge area is renowned for its gorgeous Georgian architecture, but this hotel adds a touch of modern luxury, be it in the park-view rooms or the hotel’s multiple dining areas.
This impressive four-star waterfront hotel in Galway looks out over the calm waters of Lough Atalia. Inside is a similarly tranquil affair, most notably in the onsite spa, which featured a heated pool, sauna and Jacuzzi. The award-winning Marinas Restaurant, meanwhile, is the perfect place to continue your pampering through dinner.
The Kingsley Hotel
Overlooking the River Lee in Cork, this stylish four-star hotel offers a luxurious experience right in the heart of the city. Book yourself a well-earned treatment at the spa, go fine dining at Fairbanks Restaurant and fall gently into a food coma from the comfort of your cosy modern bed.
Your safety and wellbeing are our top priority, so we’ve put the following measures in place on all our TRIPS:
- Our average group size is 10 people (max 18), which gives you all the security of being in a group whilst avoiding a crowd.
- Where possible, we use small/ boutique accommodation – this means fewer guests and reduced exposure to other travellers.
- We require all accommodation providers to share protocols around the extra health and hygiene measures they are taking.
- Included activities are exclusive to our group wherever possible, to minimise contact with others.
- Covid-19 negative test results or vaccine certificates may be required. Please check the entry requirements for the destination you are travelling to. Our travel experts can assist you in finding this information.
- We recommend you confirm all guidance on official government sites and check that you are able to travel with your travel insurance issuer. Your travel insurance may be invalidated if you travel against government advice. Our travel experts can assist you in finding this information.
- You must be aged 25 years or over to join this trip.
- Please be sure to check whether or not you need a visa to enter the country you're travelling to. Please refer to our Booking Terms & Conditions for further information.
- If you have any pre-existing medical conditions or accessibility requirements, please notify our Customer Support team as soon as possible.
- We won't charge you extra if you travel alone – you'll be allocated a twin room with another traveller of the same gender.
- To upgrade to a private room, share a room with a friend, or book pre- and post-trip accommodation and/or airport transfers, please contact our Customer Support team.
- Please be aware that travel insurance is compulsory for all travellers.
- Please be aware that the itinerary, activities and hotels are subject to change. While unlikely, these changes can happen due to circumstances beyond our control. We will always do our best to ensure minimal impact on your experience.
- Please be aware images on this page are for illustrative purposes and may not reflect your itinerary exactly.
The world of travel is changing – and that's why we’re offering flexible booking conditions, to take the stress out of booking in times of uncertainty.
You can get a full refund should you need to postpone or cancel your trip up to 56 days prior to departure.
Read our Booking Guarantee to find out more about how our Support Team can help you.
For the full details and cancellation charges, see our Booking Terms & Conditions.
Terms & Conditions
Please refer to our Booking Terms & Conditions.