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Ireland Tours

Irish Explorer Tour

Places Covered: Dublin, Londonderry / Derry, Galway, Killarney
Duration: 12 days
Tour Cost: €630

This 7 day Ireland coach tour is filled with music, monuments and mystical locations!

The Emerald Isle has long held an attraction for most visitors to Europe, whether it's tracing down family connections or a desire to sample a proper pint of Guinness. However, surprisingly enough for one of Europe's smallest countries, seeing all of Ireland in one trip is a hard task to do, so taking part in organised Ireland tours will be your best bet to see the popular sights as well as getting a little off the beaten path.

DAY 01

Dublin

Céad míle fáilte! (Or a hundred thousand welcomes!) Welcome to Ireland and the start of your tour! Depending on when you arrive and settle in, you may have a chance to see a bit of the city. Meet up with your tour leader and fellow travellers, do a spot of sightseeing or just relax – your time is yours. Big enough to keep one amused, but small enough to cover in a relatively short time, Dublin boasts an extraordinary history, rich heritage and a touch of indulgence. Enjoy! Tonight at the welcome dinner you’ll have a proper chance to meet your tour group and get more information on the days to come.

Dinner

DAY 02

Dublin - Londonderry / Derry

Today we set off from Dublin on our first day of travel. Your tour leader will give you an introduction to the history of Ireland, and as we’re headed into Northern Ireland it’s particularly important to learn about topics like the Rising, the Civil War and the Fight for Independence, along with The Troubles. Although peaceful now, this is an important part of Ireland’s history, particularly the north. We’ll stop first in the famous city of Belfast, where we’ll have an orientation tour. Having redefined itself in recent years, the city’s skyline is constantly changing. Whether you’re checking out the Victorian architecture, strolling along the vibrant waterfront or exploring Victoria Square (Europe’s biggest urban regeneration project) you’re in for an eye-opening adventure. After some free time we head to Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge for a photo stop, and also the famous Giant’s Causeway, an incredible rock formation consisting of around 40 000 interlocking basalt columns. Legend has it that the causeway was built by an Irish giant named Finn McCool, so that he could challenge his Scottish rival Benandonner to a battle. But when Benandonner appeared over the horizon, Finn McCool was terrified by the size of him, and ran home to his wife, Oonagh who disguised him as a baby, making him curl up in an enormous cradle. When Benandonner arrived, he saw the enormous ‘child’ and was terrified to think how big the father must be. He fled back to Scotland, tearing up the causeway as he went. Our last stop for the day is the riverside city of Londonderry / Derry where we spend the night.

Breakfast, dinner

DAY 03

Londonderry / Derry - Galway

Heading out from Londonderry / Derry, we make our way to Galway, joining up with the famous Wild Atlantic Way, the longest coastal drive in the world, and probably the most scenic! We’ll make a comfort stop, and then will arrive in Galway in the early afternoon. Enjoy some free time in this arty, bohemian city which boasts a vibrant ambience thanks to its large student population. With students making up a quarter of the population, you’ll find plenty of bars and cafes, some of which will feature live music. Check out the remnants of the medieval town walls, or take a stroll down the promenade to Salthill, on Galway Bay, source of the oysters that the area is known for.

Breakfast

DAY 04

Galway - Killarney

First up today we have one of the highlights of the tour – the world-famous Cliffs of Moher, where we’ll have the chance to capture a few spectacular photos of this natural wonder, which rises over 200 meters above the churning sea. We then make our way to Bunratty Castle and Folk Park. The present version of Bunratty Castle was erected in the early 1400s, though several constructions preceded it, dating back to the 10th century. Adjoining the castle is Folk Park, a reconstructed traditional Irish village complete with cottages, weavers, pie-makers, a forge and a working blacksmith. We stop for lunch in Limerick, with its fascinating castle, traditional pubs, art museum and a thriving café culture. Before the last leg of the tour today to our hotel in Killarney we stop off in Adare for photos, you’ll marvel at what’s often called ‘Ireland’s prettiest village.’ Catch a glimpse of the perfectly-preserved thatch cottages, which today are home to craft shops and restaurants. We arrive in Killarney where you can reflect on the day over dinner with your fellow explorers. *Please note the 9th July Irish Explorer departure will spend night 4 in a beautiful countryside hotel with a traditional Irish dinner and night 5 in a 4* hotel with spa facilities in Killarney, instead of 2 nights in Killarney. Everything else on the itinerary remains the same for this tour departure.

Breakfast, dinner

DAY 05

Killarney & the The Ring of Kerry

Keep your camera fully charged and at the ready – it’s going to be a day of stunning scenery! The famous ring of Kerry is our stamping ground today, home to breath-taking coastal views, emerald-green pastures and charming villages – including Caherciveen and Kenmare where we’ll make comfort stops. Both Caherciveen and Kenmare are quaint and pretty – take the opportunity to amble down the high street of Kenmare and try the culinary treats on offer from the cute cafes, bars and restaurants. Finally, Muckross House & Gardens is a stunning Victorian mansion in the heart of Killarney National Park where we’ll have the option of heading into this stunning house and garden to enjoy the scenery. *Please note the 9th July Irish Explorer departure will spend night 4 in a beautiful countryside hotel with a traditional Irish dinner and night 5 in a 4* hotel with spa facilities in Killarney, instead of 2 nights in Killarney. Everything else on the itinerary remains the same for this tour departure.

Breakfast

DAY 06

Killarney - Dublin

Journeying back to Dublin and leaving the Wild Atlantic Way, we stop at Blarney Castle, where you’ll have the chance to kiss the famous Blarney Stone and gain the ‘gift of the gab’. We’ll stop on the way in Waterford, Ireland’s oldest city, where the atmosphere and feel of medieval Ireland is unmistakable. Arriving back in Dublin, celebrate the last night of your tour with an optional Irish music evening, including dinner and a show at the Merry Ploughboy Irish Music Pub, winner of the “Best Music Pub” in Ireland. Located in the Irish countryside, this is an authentic experience, held in a pub run by traditional musicians who specialise in all aspects of Irish Music and Dance.

Breakfast.

DAY 07

Dublin

After breakfast we say our goodbyes as the tour concludes. We hope you’ve enjoyed the scenery, the culture, the sights and the history of this incredible part of the world. Don’t forget to share your details with your fellow travellers. Farewell Ireland!

Breakfast

What's Included:

  • 6 Nights accommodation in twin share accommodation. Single travellers have the option to pay a single supplement or to be roomed with other single travellers.
  • 6 Breakfasts, 3 Dinners
  • Experiences, and Optional Excursion (including guided walking tours, orientation walks, driving tours of cities plus other exciting experiences.
  • Modern air conditioned coach with reclining seats, TV for showing DVDs, and toilet.
  • Free Wi-Fi in hotels
  • Services of tour leader who will be on hand with advice and tips and ensure that you get the most from your trip. You can also book any of the optional excursions available during your tour with your tour leader.
  • All taxes and fees
  • Any public transport used as part of the tour (excludes arrival and departure days)
  • Free tour souvenir – a memorable gift of your once in a lifetime trip.

REMEMBER ALL TOURS ARE GUARANTEED DEPARTURES AND WILL OPERATE.

Many other companies that operate tours of Europe cancel tours if minimum numbers are not achieved or will only guarantee some departure dates. All tours operated by us are guaranteed departures and will operate.∗

Belfast

1 Included Experience

Enjoy an orientation tour of Belfast, our first stop on the tour.

Carrick-a-Reede

1 Included Experience

Photo stop at Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, which links the mainland with the tiny island of Carrickarede. Spanning 20 meters, the bridge is suspended 30 meters above the rocks below. Enjoy the spectacular Cliffside views!

Giant's Causeway

1 Included Experience

The Giant’s Causeway is one of Ireland’s most famous sights, a natural geological wonder that is the result of ancient volcanic activity in the area. Or perhaps a giant did actually build it as the legend suggests… Either way, we’ll stop here and give you the chance to explore it for yourself.

Galway

1 Included Experience

Free time in Galway – enjoy the bohemian vibe of this lively town, where you’ll find plenty of bars and cafes. Look out for live music! Alternatively, find the remnants of the medieval city walls or walk down the promenade to Salthill on Galway Bay.

Galway - Killarney

4 Included Experiences

The Cliffs of Moher: We’ll stop at the Cliffs of Moher for the chance to get some photos of the spectacular view. We visit Bunratty Castle – a beautiful 15thcentury tower house in County Clare, Bunratty Castle is a piece of Irish history, with the original structure on this site dating back to the 10thcentury. Folk Park adjoins the castle, and here you’ll get a peek at a traditional reconstructed Irish village, complete with cottages, weavers, pie-makers, a forge and a working blacksmith. Next we stop in Adare for a photo stop, often called ‘Ireland’s prettiest village’ and featuring perfectly preserved thatch cottages, home to craft shops and restaurants.

Killarney & The Ring of Kerry

3 Included Experiences

1 Optional Excursion

An incredible day of sightseeing awaits as we drive one of Ireland’s most scenic roads. Take in breath-taking coastal views, emerald-green pastures and charming villages. Comfort stops at both Caherciveen & Kenare: These are quaint and gorgeous towns. Amble down the high street of Kenmare and take advantage of the culinary treats on offer from the cute cafes, bars and restaurants. We then stop at Moll’s Gap, where you’ll be blown away by the scenery of this beautiful green valley.

Optional Excursion:

Muckross House & Gardens, a stunning Victorian mansion in the heart of Killarney National Park(Only available for selected departures).

Killarney - Dublin

2 Included Experiences

1 Optional Excursion

Included Experiences:

On our way back to Dublin we stop at Blarney Castle, where you can kiss the famous Blarney Stone and hopefully gain the ‘gift of the gab.’ We also stop in Waterford, Ireland’s oldest city. Feel the atmosphere of medieval Ireland here like nowhere else!

Optional Excursion:

Celebrate the last night of your tour with an optional Irish music evening, including dinner and a show at the Merry Ploughboy Irish Music Pub, winner of the “Best Music Pub” in Ireland 2011. Located in the Irish countryside, this is an authentic experience, held in a pub run by traditional musicians who specialise in all aspects of Irish Music and Dance. This final evening serves as a lovely farewell dinner for the tour.

Tour Dates & Rates

Dates

Tour Price

EarlyBird

Status

Description

12 Jul to 18 Jul 2015

€1145

€675

Guaranteed to depart

Less than 20 seats left

09 Aug to 15 Aug 2015

€1145

€660

Guaranteed to depart

Less than 26 seats left

23 Aug to 29 Aug 2015

€1145

€630

Guaranteed to depart

Less than 26 seats left

06 Sep to 12 Sep 2015

€1145

€645

Guaranteed to depart

Less than 29 seats left

04 Oct to 10 Oct 2015

€1000

€660

Guaranteed to depart

Less than 26 seats

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