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Britain & IrelandCountry Roads
Duration: 12 days Visiting: Ireland
Welcome to Dublin.
On arrival at Dublin airport, transfers leave for your hotel at 08:30, 11:00 and 13:00. Join your Travel Director at 18:00 for a warm and friendly Welcome Dinner with the opportunity to mingle and get to know each other over a meal with wine.
In Dublin’s Fair City.
Become acquainted with Dublin’s elegant squares during an orientation of the city. Discover famous O’Connell Street, Custom House and Dublin Castle. Enjoy your VIP priority entrance to the 9th century Book of Kells and a walk through the cobbled courtyards of Trinity College accompanied by a university insider, who will share their insights into modern life and the establishment’s impressive history. The afternoon is free to explore.
A Journey from Dublin to Cork.
In the morning, visit one of the country’s main racehorse breeding centres. Continue to the acclaimed 100 year old Japanese Gardens where you can ‘journey through life’ during a walk through the beautiful surrounds. Travel to the medieval city of Kilkenny, home of the world's fastest field game. The ancient Celtic sport of Hurling is over 3,000 years old and Ireland's national sport. Meet a player who will share his passion though a demonstration of skill. Continue through Cahir and see its imposing 13th century castle, featured in the film 'Excalibur', on the way to Cork. On arrival, your Travel Director will show you around the compact university city, with its vibrant waterfront and grand Georgian parades.
Across the Mountains to Killarney.
Travel to the ruined Blarney Castle. Will you hang upside down from the ramparts to kiss the stone and ensure a lifetime of eloquence? Travel across the majestic Derrynasaggart Mountains to the peaceful town of Killarney. For your Farm-to-Table dining experience, enjoy some Irish home cooking in the kitchens of chef John Sheehan. Join John and his wife, Freda for drinks and a personal insight into classic Irish recipes that are loved throughout the world. Then, settle down for a night of great food and drink in a friendly, relaxed atmosphere.
Ring of Kerry Experience.
Start your day with a memorable ride on a horse-drawn jaunting car with the local jarveys. Take a leisurely excursion around the magnificent Ring of Kerry. Here, mountains, valleys, lakes and sea blend into a landscape that is breathtaking beyond words. Journey past lush lakelands and around towering cliffs as you appreciate sweeping sea views. Continue through delightful villages like Sneem and cross the peat bogs of the Black Mountains to Moll’s Gap to admire Queen Victoria’s Ladies View. The rest of the afternoon is at leisure. Maybe take the opportunity to hire a bicycle and enjoy one of the many scenic trails around the lake or through the National Park?
Around the Dingle Peninsula.
In the morning, take to the wide skies, peaceful towns and coastal scenery of the Dingle Peninsula - the setting for the film Ryan’s Daughter. Drive to dramatic Slea Head at the peninsula’s far end, then continue through the picturesque thatched village of Adare and pass Limerick, famous for rhymes, before reaching your hotel located at the gateway to the Wild Atlantic Way, with access to the Dromoland Castle Estate.
The Cliffs of Moher and Galway.
Journey to the Visitor Centre at the 700-foot Cliffs of Moher. Enjoy breathtaking views of the Clare Coast before a delightful drive through the strange, rocky landscape of the Burren to Galway Bay. On arrival, see the Lynch Memorial and Church of St. Nicholas, where Christopher Columbus reputedly prayed before his voyages to America. See the Spanish Arch and Eyre Square, dedicated to the late US President, John F. Kennedy.
Free day Galway or Aran Islands.
Spend a day at leisure to relax and enjoy Galway. Perhaps join an Optional Experience to the Aran Islands - a genuine highlight of the Wild Atlantic Way. With their cliffs and spectacular coastal views, the islands are a true Irish experience.
Continue on to County Sligo, stopping at a peaceful churchyard in Drumcliffe to visit the final resting place of Ireland's famous poet, William Butler Yeats. Admire the Blue Stack Mountains of Donegal as you cross into Northern Ireland bound for the ancient walled city of 'Derry.' What better way to experience sightseeing than with one of Northern Ireland's best storytellers, Ronan, as he takes you on a tour inside the city walls, still topped with cannons. Walk down steep Shipquay Street, with its elegant Georgian houses, to the Gothic Guildhall.
Walk in the Giant’s Steps on the way to Ballygally.
Journey to the legendary Giant's Causeway, a geological masterpiece created by the cooling of lava which burst through the earth's crust millions of years ago. Next, prepare yourself for miles of breathtaking beauty as you travel along the road clinging to the Antrim Coast. Continue onto your hotel, overlooking Ballygally Bay. For those who are brave enough, perhaps check out The Ghost Room, in one of the castle’s turrets? In the evening, please join us for a finale Celebration Dinner, where old-fashioned hospitality is blended with good food and wine for an experience that delights the senses.
The Antrim Coast to Belfast.
Continue around the Antrim Coast, past the huge Norman castle at Carrickfergus, to arrive in the Northern Ireland capital of Belfast. Meet Hilda, your Local Expert, for a passionate city tour including views of the City Hall, Queen's University, the Parliament Building at Stormont and murals in different locations indicating political sentiments of local residents.
Departure transfers arrive at Belfast George Best City Airport at 07:15 and Belfast International Airport at 08:00.
Most Insight trips already include a host of bonus highlights and comprehensive sightseeing. There may also be an exciting array of Optional Experiences which will turn an already amazing experience into the trip of a lifetime! These are entirely optional and can be booked through your Travel Director/Local Representative at the commencement of your trip. Please note, many Optional Experiences are operated by independent third party suppliers, not Insight Vacations.
Prices and availability of Optional Experiences are subject to change.
Dublin (Traditional) - Ireland
Cork (Contemporary) - Ireland
Newly built Maldron Hotel South Mall is perfectly positioned in the heart of the city, overlooking the River Lee on Beasley Street and only a short walking distance to the cities sights.
Killarney (Traditional) - Ireland
In the heart of the town centre, the Killarney Plaza Hotel and Spa overlooks Killarney National Park and is the perfect location to enjoy the stunning scenery and the local 'craic.'
Dromoland (Tradional) - Ireland
Set in the heart of west-coast Ireland's beautiful County Clare, The Inn At Dromoland is situated on 450 acres of wooded countryside and features panoramic views of the Clare Hills and Shannon Estuary. Your spacious, traditional-style room will ensure a comfortable stay.
GALWAY (Historic) - IRELAND
Set on the coast, the Connemara Coast Hotel offers spectacular views of Connemara and continues a tradition in hospitality dating back to 1839.
Londonderry (Traditional) - Ireland
The Maldron Hotel Derry is the only hotel situated in Londonderry’s 17th century walls and very close to all that the city has to offer.
Ballygally (Castle) - Northern Ireland
Ballygally Castle is a stunning 17th century castle which overlooks the golden sands of the bay and offers excellent facilities.
Belfast (Traditional) - Northern Ireland
The Europa Hotel is located in the heart of Belfast City Centre and offers elegant décor, a contemporary bistro and a relaxing piano bar.
Experience a journey beyond the ordinary in Ireland with our sister brand, Luxury Gold.
On Ultimate Ireland, stay in luxurious accommodations at Ashford Castle, enjoy exceptional dining at the Michelin-starred Lady Helen Restaurant and meet esteemed author Trevor White on an after-hours tour of The Little Museum of Dublin.