Join us as we experience first hand this beautiful country known as the Emerald Isles. Offering beautiful landscape and lush green colors set against the Atlantic Ocean the cliff sides are worth the visit alone. The shorelines are trimmed by golden sands and rocky cliffs. Inland lakes and rural idylls are varied and tranquil. The Irish are some of friendliest people and enjoy sharing in myths and tales of this magical place. Home too many great music artist such as U2 this is truly a gem worth exploring and taking in local Irish fare and music.
We start in Dublin a city offering many pubs, live music, Historical Cathedrals, Trinity College, The Guinness Storehouse, St Stephens Green and so much more. We will head off to the Wicklow country side and explore the breathtaking mountains and Powerscourt Estate. Traveling to Killarney we will pass through some quaint Irish villages.
You will get to stay in two different Castle Hotels and truly experience Ireland and all it's Irish heritage, Celtic history, Natural beauty and some of the friendliest people around.
Day 1: August 31 – Welcome to Ireland - Transfer from the Dublin Airport to your hotel in the city center. Please note check in may not be possible until after 3:00 PM. This afternoon meet with your local guide and enjoy a Panoramic tour of Dublin. Discover the north side of the River Liffey. This area offers great striking monuments such as the General Post Office, the city's main thoroughfare, O'Connell Street, the Custom Houses along the quays, and Phoenix Park, the largest public park in Europe. The south side appears more sophisticated with its vast Georgian squares, such as Merrion Square, where Oscar Wilde’s House can still be found with its colorful doors, along with Grafton Street and its quality shops. Not far from St. Stephen’s Green, on Kildare St., you will see the house of Bram Stoker, the author of Dracula. This part of the city is also dominated by the students of Trinity College, where the famous ‘book of Kells’ is permanently exhibited in its library. Brooks Hotel for 2 nights. Welcome dinner tonight to meet the group. (D)
Day 2: September 1 – Countryside Tour - After a hearty Irish breakfast we head out of the city to see the beauty ans sites of the country side South Of Dublin. Climbing into the hills of Wicklow, take in the sights before hopping out to explore Glendalough and the Valley of the Two Lakes. We will visit Powerscourt Estate where you can explore 47 acres of gardens, meander through the charismatic stores in Powerscourt House and see the Powerscourt Waterfall, Ireland’s highest at (398ft.) It is set in one of Ireland’s most beautiful parkland at the foothills of the Wicklow Mountains. Well have lunch at Avoca Cafe the café boasts tall windows and French doors leading out onto an expansive garden terrace with a simply breath-talking panorama of the gardens against the backdrop of the famous Sugarloaf Mountain. The food at the Terrace Café is homemade. Back in Dublin enjoy the balance of your day at leisure. Enjoy some time to explore Dublin from our centrally located hotel. You may opt for a tour and tasting at the famous Guinness Storehouse. Stroll the streets for some live local music, shopping and taking in the Irish culture. Have a Pint in the Temple bar area and take in all the action here. Tonight enjoy an Irish dinner and Celtic show. (B, D)
Day 3: September 2 – Dublin to Killarney - Today you will depart Dublin for Killarney. Enrout well stop in the Town of Kildare to visit the Kildare Castle and St. Brigid’s Cathedral. Some say the town feels the presence of "Brigid of Kildar" Ireland's most important female Saint.
Continuing on we will stop to see the "Rock of Cashel". It’s huge, it’s complex, it’s iconic, there is nothing like it anywhere else in the world. The Rock of Cashel more formally St. Patrick’s Rock, it is also known as Cashel of the Kings. Reputedly the site of the conversion of Aenghus the King of Munster by St. Patrick in the 5th century AD. Long before the Norman invasion The Rock of Cashel was the seat of the High Kings of Munster, The buildings represent both Hiberno-Romanseque and Germanic influences in their architecture.
On our arrival at our "Castle Hotel" Settle in and enjoy the remainder of the day at your leisure to enjoy the hotel and the grounds. Options are to enjoy the hotel's gardens, explore the area via a horse ride or enjoy a scenic walk through the picturesque area around the hotel grounds. Overlooking the famous Gap of Dunloe, set on its own 64 acre estate leading to the ruins of the 12th century castle and River Laune. The Dunloe Hotel & Gardens is one of the finest luxury hotels Ireland has to offer, boasting magnificent 5 star hotel accommodation in Kerry, Ireland, only 5 miles from Killarney town. Enjoy a sumptuous Irish feast this evening.
5* Dunloe Castle Hotel for 3 nights (B, D)
Day 4: September 3 – Muckross House and Killarney National Park - Today we are off for a visit to Muckross House and Gardens a magnificent Victorian mansion built in 1843 and one of Ireland’s leading stately homes. Built on the shores of Muckross Lake, it is beautifully situated amidst the spectacular scenery of Killarney National Park. The elegantly furnished rooms portray the lifestyle of the landed gentry, while downstairs in the basement one can experience the working conditions of the servants employed in the house. The gardens of Muckross House are famed for their beauty worldwide.
We will also tour the beautiful Killarney National Park via Pony and carriage and also explore the 3 lakes of the park via boat.
Spend the balance of your day and evening at leisure. You may opt for a spa treatment at the hotel. (B,L)
Day 5: September 4 – Ring of Kerry Tour - This morning leave your hotel for a full day tour of the Ring of Kerry one of the most famous and panoramic routes in Ireland. The astonishing beauty of this large peninsula, Iveragh, comes from the great diversity of its scenery, which offers incessant contrasts. En route around the Ring, take in spectacular scenery - mountains, peat bogs, lakes and magnificent views of the Atlantic Ocean as one travels along the coastal road. A scenic lunch stop along the water will offer you a wonderful perspective of Irish life. Leaving Killarney pass through Killorglin, famous for its Puck Fair, then to Glenbeigh where the cliff road affords panoramic views of the Dingle Peninsula and Dingle Bay. Continue to Sneem Village, famous for its brightly colored houses. The road then continues through the mountains to Molls Gap and Ladies View with superb views of the famous Lakes of Killarney. We will stop for a spot of Tea at Lord Brandon's cottage.
This afternoon return to the hotel with time to explore this amazing estate. Dinner tonight (B,D)
Day 6: September 5 – Killarney - Galway - Cliffs of Moher - This morning you will travel via the Shannon Car Ferry to the Cliffs of Moher Situated on the Atlantic Ocean and bordering the Burren region. The Cliffs of Moher are one of Ireland's most spectacular sights. Standing 230 metres above the ground at their highest point and 8km long, the Cliffs boast one of the most amazing views in Ireland. Next we travel to Galway through the Burren Region it is composed of limestone pavements, which have been eroded to a distinctive pattern. House Hotel for 2 nights (B)
Day 7: September 6 - Your last day in Ireland is spend at your leisure in Galway. This vibrant city offers great walks along the water and central park area. Galway, a harbour city on Ireland’s west coast, sits where the River Corrib meets the Atlantic Ocean. The city’s hub is the 18th-century Eyre Square, a popular meeting spot surrounded by shops and traditional pubs that offer live Irish folk music. Nearby, stone-clad cafes, boutiques and art galleries line the winding lanes of the Latin Quarter, which retains portions of the medieval city walls. Quay street offers and abundance of shops and dining. Tonight enjoy a farewell dinner with live Irish music and say goodbye to your new friends and Ireland. (B,D)
Day 8: September 7 – Departure Day. This morning transfer to the Shannon Airport for your return flight home, please note one group transfer is provided. Transfers to Dublin can be arranged for an additional cost. (B)
Cost: $1845.00 based on Double Occupancy. (Roommates can be provided)
Single Supplement $750.00
SAVE 3% on the tour cost if you pay the full amount via check
Booking/final payment deadline is 60 days prior to departure.
7 nights’ hotel in 4* hotel with taxes
5 Dinners Including 1 Irish show
Entrance fees to all sites visited as per itinerary
Tour Leader with 6 or more clients
Private transfers to all included sites and cities visited
Shannon car ferry
Local Tour Guide/Private driver
Arrival transfers in Dublin if traveling on tour dates and at the same times as other travelers. TBA
Departure transfers in Shannon if traveling with the group
International airfare. Please note flights arrive into Dublin (DUB) and depart from Shannon (SNN)
Meals not listed in the itinerary
Tips for driver/guide/tour leader
Room charges such as calls, mini bar, laundry, room service.
All personal expenses
Any additional tours or expenses not listed in the itinerary.
Airport transfers if arriving at different times or departing from Dublin
Pre nights Dublin $192.00 pp double, $367.00 single pre night
Entry Requirements: Visitors from the US, Canada and Australia need a valid passport, but visas are not required for Americans, Canadians or Australians visiting for less than 3 months. If you are a citizen of another E.U. country, you do not need a passport, only an identity card. Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months after the date you intend to leave the European Union. Make sure you check your passport expiry date at least 2 months prior to travel. Before traveling abroad it's a good idea to make two photocopies of your passport, driver's license and credit cards. Leave one copy at home with a friend or family member and another bring with you.
Weather: The weather in Ireland can be a bit unpredictable at times. Ireland’s climate is generally mild, the summer temperatures during the day are a comfortable 60° to 70°F. The evenings are a bit cooler around 50 to 60 F. There can always be the occasional rain shower even in the normally drier month of August.
Time Zone: Ireland follows Greenwich Mean Time (1 hr. earlier than Central European Time). It is 5 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time in the United States. Ireland has daylight savings time which lasts from late March to late September.
Currency: The currency of Ireland is the Euro. The best way to get cash in the local currency is from an ATM. Keep in mind that most banks impose a fee every time a card is used at another bank's ATM, and that fee can be higher for international transactions ($5 or more) so try and withdraw as few times as possible. Credit cards are accepted by most shops and restaurants however check with your credit card company regarding foreign exchange fees. You will also have a better chance making deals at local shops if paying with cash.
Electricity: The Irish electric system operates on 220 volts with a plug that has three rectangular prongs. To use standard American 110-volt appliances, you'll need both a transformer and a plug adapter.
Taxes/VAT: The Irish sales tax collected is called VAT and is already included in the price on price tags. The VAT rates vary, for souvenirs and gifts, it is 21%. Visitors from outside the EU can get a VAT tax refund at the airport when departing, but the minimum that you must spend at one store to obtain the refund is 100 Euro. To get a VAT refund on purchases that qualify, present your passport to the salesperson and ask for the special stamped form. Present the form with your purchases at the booth marked IVA Tax Refunds at the airport, as you leave EU. Your refund should arrive by check or be credited to your credit card within a few weeks. Not all stores participate in this program so always ask first.
Health: No special vaccinations are required to enter Ireland. Water is safe to drink.
Activity Level: This is a pretty easy tour for the average person. During the tour, we will travel by private bus. At each stop we will be walking quite a bit. To be able to fully enjoy the tour and participate in scheduled activities, you need to be able to walk, at a leisurely pace, up to 3 or so miles on some days. You should be able to stand unassisted for up to 30 minutes at times during the tours. You will need be able to climb stairs, without any assistance. At times you will need manage your own luggage. This trip is pretty easy for the average person however if you can't or choose not to participate in certain activities this is at your own discretion. However it cannot affect the groups participation nor can any tours or activities or refunds be offered or changed due to an individual not being able or not wanting to participate.
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