Irish Elegance - Insight Vacations

Irish Elegance (Summer 2017)

Duration: 9 days Visiting: Ireland

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  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Highlights
  • Optional experiences
  • Accommodation
  • Reviews
  • Dates & prices

Showcasing the very best sights and scenery of Ireland including the Wild Atlantic Way and a magnificent night at the stylish, distinguished and luxurious Ashford Castle.

  1. Day 1

    Your Journey Begins

    Board your overnight flight to Europe (please ask about our great deals).

  2. Day 2

    In Dublin’s Fair city

    Welcome to a land of legends, of misty mountains, lovely lakes and a warm, friendly greeting wherever you go. At Dublin Airport, transfers leave for your hotel at 08:30, 11:00 & 13:30. Later, a Dublin orientation takes you past the Custom House and along O’Connell Street. Travel along the River Liffey to see the Guinness Storehouse and Dublin Castle before admiring the historic buildings of the Georgian section of the city. 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, gaining their insight into modern life and the establishment’s impressive history. In the evening, join your Tour Director for a warm and friendly Welcome Reception with drinks and the opportunity to mingle and get to know each other over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine.

  3. Day 3

    Cashel and Blarney, heading for Killarney

    Depart Dublin, and pass the famous Curragh Racecourse and green meadows where many of the finest Irish racehorses are bred. Driving south, stop to visit the spectacular Rock of Cashel, crowned with medieval buildings, dominating the flat countryside for miles around. Continue to Blarney Castle where you can climb to the ramparts and kiss the magical stone to ensure a lifetime of eloquence. Head to Killarney, where you may fancy a ‘pint of porter'. This town on the lakes is famous for its lively pubs, so in the evening why not join in the ‘craic'?

  4. Day 4 - Relaxed Start

    Ring of Kerry Experience

    (Relaxed Start) In the morning, travel the road that winds around the beautiful Iveragh Peninsula, better known as the Ring of Kerry. There is a chance to join a hike with a local along the lake shore and past the farmlands of the Muckross Estate, admiring the spectacular scenery. Walk by West Meadow Bay and see Muckross House. While there are no mountains to climb, walkers should be fit, have good walking shoes or boots, sunscreen and rain gear. For those who do not want to join the hike, the coach will return you to Killarney, where the rest of the day is free to spend at leisure.

  5. Day 5

    The Cliffs of Moher and on to Galway

    Cross the Shannon Estuary by ferry and enter County Clare. Stop at the Exhibition Centre and enjoy a walk along the Cliffs of Moher, raised approximately 700 feet above the pounding Atlantic waves. Then travel north across the Burren, a suddenly stark and barren landscape. Next, tour Galway, 'City of the Tribes', including lovely Galway Cathedral. Take in the scenery as your hotel is spectacularly set on the shores of Galway Bay.

  6. Day 6 - Relaxed Start

    Captivating Connemara

    (Relaxed Start) Embark upon a superb excursion through a wonderland of rivers, lakes and silent hills. Stop at lakeside Kylemore Abbey - a neo-Gothic mansion, occupied today by a Benedictine community of nuns who came from Ypres after World War I.

  7. Day 7 - Relaxed Start

    Majestic Ashford Castle

    (Relaxed Start) A lone piper escorts you over the drawbridge to majestic Ashford Castle. Your signature hotel provides a romantic backdrop in superior surroundings, offering both relaxation and comfort. There are many opportunities to explore the vast estate, pamper yourself at the spa, or get to know the hawks and woodland surroundings at the hotel's Falconry School. Dining at Ashford Castle ranks among the finest culinary experiences in the world. Creative cooking, seasonal ingredients and an innovative menu await at your Highlight Celebration Dinner. (Gentlemen, a jacket is required).

  8. Day 8 - Relaxed Start

    Across the Emerald Isle to Dublin

    (Relaxed Start) Enjoy a leisurely breakfast in the morning and perhaps a stroll on the estate. Then cross the midlands to Dublin where the rest of the day is free for independent activities and maybe some last minute shopping.

  9. Day 9

    Depart Dublin

    Your tour comes to an end after breakfast. Departure transfers arrive at Dublin Airport at 07:00, 09:00 & 11:00.

Highlights

 

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCES

  • Dublin: VIP priority entrance to the Book of Kells and a guided walk though Trinity college with a University insider.
  • Cashel: Visit the spectacular rock.
  • Blarney: It is said that those who kiss the stone are bestowed with the power to persuade, flatter and coax. You are invited to dangle from the ramparts of Blarney Castle to acquire the 'gift of the gab'.
  • Galway: See the stunning cathedral.
  • Killarney: Venture into a world of towering cliffs, lush lakelands and remote villages, as you tour the magical Ring of Kerry.
  • Killarney: Join a local for a one-hour hike over wooded paths and along lakeshore trails.
  • Cliffs of Moher: Stop by the Exhibition Centre and look out over the Wild Atlantic Way from these majestic cliffs.
  • Connemara: Visit the turreted Neo-Gothic Kylemore Abbey, steeped in history and tales of tragedy and romance.

ADDITIONAL INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Shannon Estuary: Cross by ferry.
  • Burren: Drive through the rocky limestone landscape.
  • Galway: See the Roman Catholic Cathedral.
  • Connemara: Visit the Marble Factory to learn the origin and uses of the area's splendid marble.
  • Scenic drives: Wicklow Mountains, Ring of Kerry, the ‘Burren', Connemara.

AUTHENTIC REGIONAL FLAVOURS

  • Ashford Castle: Simply one of the finest culinary experiences in the world - join your Tour Director and fellow guests for a lively evening of dinner and wine.
  • 7 Full Breakfasts (FB), 2 three-course Dinners (D); plus 1 Welcome Dinner (WD) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) both with wine, plus tea or coffee.

STAY AT THE BEST ADDRESSES

  • Ashford Castle: Having undergone a magnificent $75m respectful restoration, you will relax in timeless elegance, enjoy modern facilities and wonderful, locally-sourced, organic, in-room amenities.

ADDITIONAL FIVE STAR SERVICES

  • An expert Insight Tour Director, at the pinnacle of their career, will guide you on your journey. Serving as your 'travelling concierge', this skilled guide will act as consummate organiser and be your 'friend in a foreign land'.
  • Enjoy the unique comfort of Insight's luxury air-conditioned 40 seat coach with extended leg room and on-board restroom. It's business class comfort.
  • A personal radio headset gives you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating insights and commentaries.
  • Baggage handling everywhere, with seamless and prompt delivery to your door at every hotel.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. Plus we include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi.
  • Insight Flourishes - from time to time, your Tour Director will enchant you with local tidbits, each representing authentic food or beverages unique to the destination.
  • Included airport transfers at scheduled times on arrival and departure days.

Optional experiences

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 trips. Please note, many Optional Experiences are operated by independent third party suppliers, not Insight Vacations. The Optionals and pricing listed here are a guideline only and subject to change.

Dublin Dinner And Coastal Drive

Enjoy a scenic drive along Dublin’s South Coast along the coastal towns of Sandycove, Dalkey & Killiney, followed by fine cuisine and a glass of wine in one of Dublin’s well-known stylish restaurants.

Adult Price: EUR 64.00

Code: DUB0005

Medieval History Tour and Whiskey Trail with Pub Supper

Join our local expert for a fun and informative walking Tour of the medieval city, following the whiskey trail to one of Galway's best-loved medieval taverns for a drink and supper.

Adult Price: EUR 47.00

Code: GAL0006

Corrib River and Lake Cruise

Relax and enjoy a one and half hour comprehensive cruise along the Corrib river. Then, we're off to the largest lake in the Republic, Lough Corrib. Along the way, take in the commentary and views of local landmarks, castles, historical sites and wildlife. Indulge in an award-winning Irish Coffee and Dance Demonstration, whilst sipping on the flavoursome Irish staple.

Adult Price: EUR 25.00

Code: GAL0008

Jaunting Car Ride

Clip-clop your way through the charming streets of Killarney into the beautiful Bourne Vincent National Park. A local “jarvie” informs you of the local history, legend and folklore aboard one of the famous jaunting cars.

Adult Price: EUR 21.00

Code: KIL0001

Celtic Steps

Enjoy a spectacular evening of Irish music, song and dance performed by champion dancers and musicians and showcasing the music of Kerry and beyond.

Adult Price: EUR 36.00

Code: KIL0003

Accommodation

 

Clayton Hotel Cardiff Lane Dublin

Dublin (Central) - Ireland

Complimentary Wifi

Clayton Hotel Cardiff Lane, Dublin

Killarney Plaza Hotel Killarney

Killarney (Central) - Ireland

Complimentary Wifi

Killarney Plaza, Killarney

Connemara Coast Galway

Galway (Scenic) - Ireland

Complimentary Wifi

Connemara Coast, Galway

Ashford Castle Cong

Cong (Scenic) - Ireland

Complimentary WifiSignature Hotel

Ashford Castle, Cong

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  • 5 out of 5

    A delightful journey

    10/15/2016 Patricia Edmister, Gaithersburg, United States

    What a lovely Trip, "very much back in time", but delightful blend of history of the past, and Ireland, today. The "Irish Elegance" tour was fantastic, in large part due to the excellent planning which blended a mix of the old and the new, plus an outstanding tour guide, who kept us organized, on schedule, and also entertained with information and stories about the places we were visiting. The accommodations were excellent, especially Ashford Castle, and the optional excursions were interesting. I would strongly recommend this trip.

    17 out of 19 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Irish Elegance

    5/28/2016 Cathy Krack, Buckley (WA), United States

    'Irish Elegance' was a great tour of the highlights of Southern Ireland. The food, accommodations, tourist attractions, optional activities and tour guide were all a wonderful combination of what Ireland has to offer. Ireland is beautiful--we would have loved to stayed longer. We have a lot of great memories of Ireland!

    10 out of 10 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    FANTASTIC TOUR GUIDE

    5/28/2016 Laurence Krack, Buckley (WA), United States

    Katie Vaughn was the best tour guide we've had yet. She was very personal and professional. She gave us all kinds of information on Ireland's history, values and local events. She interlaced her commentary with jokes and humorous stories. The tour exceeded our expectations.

    8 out of 8 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Irish Elegance

    9/26/2015 Craig Rubie, Calgary, Canada

    The Irish Elegance tour was outstanding. The tour guide (Erica) was very knowledgeable and helpful. The driver, Michael was very good and friendly. The tour combined a great mix of history and culture with enough free time do many things on our own. The hotels were very good with the highlight being Ashford Castle.

    35 out of 37 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Beyond Elegance

    9/22/2015 Gabriela Davis, Nashville (TN), United States

    Once again our travels with Insight score a five. I love Insight. Our bus driver Eugene was amazing throughout our tour, but especially through the ring of Kerry. No, you really don't want to do this on your own driving on the left on these extremely narrow roads. Our fabulous tour director,Erica, was the most interesting and knowledgeable ever. She also gave us interesting details about the culture, and answered every question asked thoroughly. She was like having your favorite history professor with you. The hotels were all wonderful and in perfect locations to wander about town if you wish. Ashford Castle was the experience of a lifetime. Built in 1228, stunningly elegant rooms, but with high tech tv's hidden in those gorgeous mirrors. Heated marble floors and towels too! Actually, this trip should be a 10!

    22 out of 22 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Irish Elegance Tour of Ireland

    9/21/2015 Mara Mian, Woodbridge (ON), Canada

    I can't say enough good things about the tour and our tour director. Katie was a wealth of knowledge and history on her fabulous country!!!! Ireland was everything I expected and more.... The tour had a wonderful balance of travel, history, locations, castle, etc. My stay at the Ashford Castle was something I'm not going to forget anytime soon. What an amazing place; I know now what it feels like to be a princess. I real magical place. It was all great and I would recommend this tour to anyone and I hope to get back to Ireland some day. I have to be honest and tell you that I didn't care for the Connemara Costal Hotel; I think someplace closer to the beach/restaurants would have been nicer. All the other hotels we had everything at our fingertips; this one did not. Katie was awesome!!! Took care of our every need.

    16 out of 16 people found this comment useful

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  • 4 out of 5

    Irish Elegance - Sept 2015

    9/19/2015 Josephine Biviano, London (ON), Canada

    I wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed my recent trip to Ireland with Insight. Our tour guide (Katie Vaughn) was incredible - full of lovely stories which just made the trip! I would go back to Ireland in a heartbeat...such a lovely country with beautiful people and the best food I've ever had (who knew). I loved the folk lore, the fairies and the history - this is 2nd on my list of favorites countries (I have to say Italy first - I am Italian after all!) Thanks Insight and thanks to Katie for sharing her beloved and beautiful emerald Isle with me. (yes it really is that green!)

    10 out of 10 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Ireland Tour

    8/22/2015 Ambalal Patel, Matteson, United States

    It real good Tour

    0 out of 8 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Irish elegance tour June 2015

    6/21/2015 Kathleen Constantz, Cedar Hill, United States

    The trip was beautiful from start to finish. This trip came at the perfect time. I lost my mother the month before the trip. She had been sick and was so excited for me. Her side of the family was from Ireland and she was definitely there in spirit. Our tour guide Tom Horgan was very knowledgeable and kind. He made everyone on the bus feel special and well taken care of. My only complaint is that I had to leave. I loved the countryside and felt my heritage there.

    11 out of 12 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Wonderful itinerary

    6/11/2015 Jacqueline Hutchins, Greystanes, Australia

    Fantastic tour made even more enjoyable by our tour director Patrick and driver John. Patrick's enthusiasm, knowledge, professionalism was best ever experienced and I've done many tours. He's an entertainer and we as a group struck gold having both Patrick and John!

    12 out of 13 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Excellent experience

    6/8/2015 Louise Hembroff, Winnipeg, Canada

    The tour was very well organized and a wonderful trip for me. The tour director(Shona Finney) made the whole time exceptional. She was the best tour director I have ever had and I would not hesitate to do another tour with her. The bus driver was also excellent-very friendly and accommodating and a great driver. The choice of hotels were far beyond what I expected, especially Ashford Castle! My travel agent (Dayle Harding of Charleswood Travel)went to great lengths to plan my whole trip.

    10 out of 10 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Irish Elegance Plus

    6/6/2015 Linda Daughen, Whitby, Canada

    Had an absolute fabulous time touring Ireland with Shona. Such a lovely, pleasant and very knowledgable tour director. First class all the way.

    7 out of 7 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    A genuine Irish experience

    5/29/2015 Lloyd Davis, Moorooka, Australia

    Although initially wary of getting the "Irish-paddy show”, our misgivings quickly disappeared when Patrick let us into the genuine Irish experience with hidden secrets and his deep knowledge of Irish history, geography, customs, literature and social culture. It was uplifting to be entertained and informed by Patrick every day as well as being shown highlights such as Ashford Castle (a genuine castle!) the Rock of Cashel, Kylemore Abbey, the Book of Kells, the Cliffs of Mohr, Galway Bay, etc. as well as the history of these significant Irish touchstones. Patrick’s readings between places as we travelled on the coach were a treat and he managed to project the Kerryman’s soft laments perfectly. Thanks Insight; we will be booking with you again.

    14 out of 14 people found this comment useful

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  • 5 out of 5

    Ireland

    5/19/2015 Noreen Adam, Surrey, Canada

    Shona, our guide was wonderful. She had lots of stories, jokes and was very entertaining. The hotels were good, but Ashford Castle was the BEST! what an amazing place. We experienced so much with the Falconry, the visiting Irish Wolfhounds and fabulous dinner. (and of course the rooms and grounds were amazing.Would recommend! PS and lots of stops for the bathroom YEAH!

    22 out of 22 people found this comment useful

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NB: Trip prices and dates are correct at the time of the website going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking.
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All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however is subject to change, please confirm all details at time of booking. For full terms and conditions, please refer to our Booking Conditions page.

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