Day 1: Dublin
Trinity College Dublin
The Book of Kells
Old Jameson Distillery
Trinity College Dublin
The Book of Kells
Old Jameson Distillery
You will travel through Dublin city to see historic buildings such as Trinity College, where the Book of Kells is housed; rows of Georgian houses and the new buildings around the Financial Centre beside the River Liffey. Hit the Guinness Storehouse for a pint of the black stuff and pull your own pint! Why not take a tour of Dublin Castle, which was the seat of power and government for many centuries and today plays a leading role in European Union activities.
Blarney Woollen Mills
Cobh Heritage Centre
Kinsale fishing town
Old Midleton Whiskey Distillery
Depart Dublin and travel through the midlands of Ireland, which has some of the best farmland in Ireland. You will be itching to stop for photos at the majestic ruins on the Rock of Cashel, rising high above the surrounding countryside where you will fall in love. You will continue your drive south and, just a few miles outside Cork city, you will want to visit Blarney Castle to kiss the famous “Stone of Eloquence.” We recommend you stop at the Blarney Woollen Mills where you can find quality Irish made goods of all types to take back home with you.
The Ring of Kerry
Killarney National Park
Muckross House & Gardens
Killarney’s Traditional Music Pubs
Tom Crean’s Pub
Today you will experience one of Ireland’s most stunning scenic drives – the 100 miles long Ring of Kerry. You will inhale the breathtaking sights of the Macgillycuddy’s Reeks as well as coastal views of beaches and cliffs. Learn about the off-shore islands where early Christian monks lived in austere conditions and how they were used as one of the locations for “Star Wars VII” movie. Stop for a stroll around Sneem, with its brightly-painted houses and again at Moll’s Gap for panoramic views of Ireland’s highest mountains and deepest valleys. You will stop and get a flavour of farm life with a sheepdog demonstration of herding flocks, a shearing demonstration and see different breeds of Irish sheep with the Irish farmers at their farm house.
Bunratty Castle & Folk Park
Cliffs of Moher
The Poulnabrone Dolmen
The Burren Smokehouse
You will continue your journey to Clare, and drive north to Tarbert for a 20-minute ferry ride across the wide River Shannon Estuary, the longest river in Ireland or the UK. You will want to continue along the Clare coast to the Cliffs of Moher, a spectacular wall of sandstone that reaches to almost 700 feet above the Atlantic Ocean. Head onto the marketing town of Ennis and then hit Bunratty, visit the Bunratty Castle and Folk Park and maybe stop at Durty Nelly’s to grab some great traditional Irish food.
Travel northwards to Galway City for a real treat and take in the unforgettable views. Take some time to look around the city before travelling out along the famous Galway Bay to Spiddal where the locals still speak the Irish language. You will head across the rugged boglands of Connemara to Moycullen to visit the Connemara Marble Factory. You will see how locally-quarried marble is made into attractive products and enjoy the good auld tea and scones.
Belleek Pottery Factory
Glenveagh National park
Killybegs fishing port
Leo’s Tavern (Home of Clannad and Enya)
Daniel O’Donnell visitor centre
County Donegal is a largely Irish-speaking region bordering the Atlantic Ocean in northwestern Ireland. Donegal is known for its castles, rugged coastline and mountains such as the iconic, quartzite Mount Errigal. Glenveagh National Park encompasses forests, lakes and bogland in the central Derryveagh Mountains. Its 1870s manor house, the Scottish Baronial-style Glenveagh Castle, is renowned for its Victorian-era gardens, Donegal is one of Ireland’s untouched and unspoilt, romantic and authentic counties and one you will remember forever with the friendly, warm locals.
Ulster Folk Museum
Derry City Walls
Grianan of Aileach – 6th Century Ringfort
Derry is the second-largest city in Northern Ireland and the fourth-largest city on the island of Ireland. The name Derry comes from the Irish name Daire or Doire meaning “oak forest”. The old walled city lies on the west bank of the River Foyle, which runs through the city to the sea. The city extends along both banks of the river and also extends to rural areas to the southeast. Derry is an historic city and there’s plenty to see and do. Derry’s 17th Century City Walls and the Guildhall are a must see. The historical murals of the Bogside depict the history of ‘The Troubles’ and are another great attraction. The late great poet Seamus Heaney was a native of Derry. Derry City will be a memorable visit and it is great to get some last minute gifts (remember you will need sterling for Derry and Northern Ireland).
Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge
North Antrim Coast
Belfast is the capital city of Northern Ireland and is the second largest city on the island of Ireland. Belfast is famous for many reasons and is probably best known as the birthplace of the Titanic. The Titanic Quarter is a must see and is situated in the recently renovated dockyards. This fantastic area includes the Titanic Belfast museum, built in the shape of the hull of a ship; shipbuilder Harland and Wolff’s drawing offices and the Titanic slipways. The history of the recent period known as ‘The Troubles’ is depicted on the many famous wall murals throughout the city and are a great photo opportunity. Belfast is nowadays seen as a lively and hip city with a great nightlife. The nearby Giant’s Causeway is one of Ireland’s top attractions and when you visit it you will see why. The story goes that it was built by a local giant who wanted to build a path to Scotland to track down his nemesis. You can make up your own mind!
Hill of Tara
Travel to the mysterious County of Meath known as the Royal County which derives its name from the Second Century AD as a territory for the High Kings of Ireland.
The abundance of historic monuments within this area testifies to the ancient importance of this region and some of the most important historic sites and monuments in Ireland dot the landscape here, for example the UNESCO World Heritage Site at Brú na Bóinne. (Newgrange)
The famous River Boyne flows gently through County Meath and along Co. Louth before flowing into the Irish Sea at Drogheda. You will be able to get picture perfect images of the Boyne in Navan. The Valleys of Meath’s fertile soil has ensured that it has been inhabited continuously from the end of the Ice Age.