Tour of Southern Ireland from Dublin to Dublin
With its unimaginable scenery and unparalleled hospitality, the Republic of Ireland offers a myriad of experiences that are unlike any on Earth.
From east to west and from north to south, Ireland has something to offer for everyone:
music and art, history and scenery, grace and charm and elegance can all be found here.
The wonders of Ireland extend to all corners of this beloved island, but there is nowhere that is quite so special as the south From Dublin to Cork to Galway and more, this nine-day tour offers the perfect opportunity to explore this remarkable island of proud rebels and warrior poets, of high style and soaring sights, and filled with the euphonious melodies echoing from your favorite pub.
The lush green valleys and the sharp stone of Celtic crosses; the tranquility of a country estate and the pounding pulse of an Irish pub band at full bore; the finest food and drink, and the friendliest people: all of it can be found in this singular country of lovers and rogues. Erin awaits with open arms; there’s never been a better time to embrace her.
– 9 days / 8 nights
What is Included
Land transportation in Ireland via private motor coach, as indicated on itinerary
Accommodation in double-occupancy rooms in 3/4 star hotels for 8 nights
– Daily american breakfasts
– 8 meals (8 dinners )- Jug of water and tea/coffea
– Services of a full-time tour guide
– All guided tours as indicated on itinerary
– Entrance fees :
- DUBLIN : Guinnes storehouse plus pint of Guinnes beer
- KILKENNY : Castle
- CASHEL : The Rock
- COBH : Titanic Experience
- BLARNEY CASTLE: Castle and gardens
- RING OF KERRY: Salmon Smoke House – Sheep Dog SHOW
- BUNRATTY: castle and park
- CLIFFS OF MOHER : visitor center
- CLONMACNOISE : monastic site
- KILBEGGAN DISTILLERY: visit and whiskey tasting
- DUBLIN Dinner show
Airfare to and from Ireland
Shopping and personal expenses
All other expenses incurred during free time.
2 NIGHTS- DUBLIN
1 NIGHT– CORK
– BLARNEY CASTLE
2 NIGHTS– KILLARNEY
– RING OF KERRY
– CLIFFS OF MOHER
2 NIGHTS- GALWAY
– CLONMACNOISE MONASTERY
– KILBEGGAN DISTILLERY
1 NIGHT – DUBLIN
Hit the highlights in Ireland’s capital city and the heart of modern Irish culture, from the Trinity College to the dancing deliciousness of Guinness stout , and from the reverence at St. Audens Church to the luxurious storefronts of Grafton Street
Test the legend of the Blarney Stone just outside Cork city
Head to the edge of the island along the breathtaking Ring of Kerry
Discover the incomparable beauty of County Kerry, from the stretches of forest at Killarney National Park to its lakes and waterfalls
cross the River Shannon and Explore the impeccably preserved Bunratty Castle both inside and out
Take a ride along the Atlantic to discover the most indescribable natural landscapes in the entire country: the moon-like Burren and the spectacular Cliffs of Moher
Discover Galway the “City of the Tribes,” and encounter the best that this seaside village has to offer
Lose yourself in the Celtic aura of the stirring region of Connemara
Experience the peaceful atmosphere in an Early Christian Monastic site founded on the bank of the River Shannon.
Visit the Kilbeggan Distillery , 258 year old tradition of making whiskey , using the oldest working still in Ireland.
Trip at a Glance
Day 1: Dublin (Greetings from Dublin!)
Day 2: Dublin (Hitting the Highlights of the Capital City)
Day 2: Kilkenny and Rock of Cashel (Tacking South and West from the Capital City)
Day 4: County Cork (Exploring the Irish South)
Day 5: County Kerry (The Greenest Face of the Emerald Isle)
Day 6: County Clare (The Iconic Shores on the Edge of the Atlantic)
Day 7: County Galway ( Connemara, The Heart of the Gaeltecht)
Day 8: Ancient Monastery and Whiskey Distillery (heart of the island))
Day 9: Dublin (Returning Home)
Day 1: Welcome to Ireland! Greetings from Dublin! Your Irish journey commences in Dublin, a one-of-a-kind world capital that is renowned for its beautiful Georgian architecture, its varied entertainment, and its kind and personable people.
This afternoon sees you into the capital of incredible Ireland, a true world city that has taken its place among the literary centers of Europe.
Stroll down O’Connell Street, the city’s main thoroughfare north of the River Liffey, to explore some of Dublin’s best statuary, including the monument to Daniel O’Connell, the facade of the General Post Office. Crain your neck as you reach the Dublin Spire, the tallest sculpture on Earth, or turn towards street level to catch a glimpse of Dublin’s most prominent literary export, James Joyce.
Check in hotel
You will have time for a quick nap and a hearty meal in hotel will prepare you for the best part of life in Dublin: pub crawling. The best Irish music scene is found in the lively neighborhood of Temple Bar, with The Quay and the Oliver St. John Gogarty’s being two of the best.
Day 2: Hitting the Highlights of the Capital City Today is dedicated to exploring one of Europe’s gems: incredible tour of Dublin including visit to the Guinnes storehouse plus pint of Guinnes beer. You start your day at St. Audens Church, the oldest church of DUBLIN.
History buffs will enjoy walking the grounds of Dublin Castle, an imposing complex in the heart of the city that served as the seat of British power in Ireland for more than five hundred years. On the way back, driving along river Liffey, you can see Collins’ Barracks, the former headquarters of the Irish Army and now a museum dedicated to Irish history; Kilmainham Gaol, the temporary home of some of Ireland’s most note-worthy patriots, including Charles Stewart Parnell, Michael Collins and Eamon de Valera; and Phoenix Park, one of the largest walled parks in Europe, featuring the enormous Papal Cross, the Wellington Monument, the Dublin Zoo, and the domicile of the Irish President. A walk through the grounds of Trinity College, Dublin—the alma mater of some of Ireland’s greatest names, including Swift and Beckett, Stoker and Wilde—is an event even on an overcast day. Further south takes you to Kildare Street and the National Museum of Ireland and Leinster House, home of the Irish Parliament; Merrion’s Square, where you can see the birthplace of Oscar Wilde; and Saint Stephen’s Green, Dublin’s Central Park, bounded on all sides by beautiful Georgian townhomes.
The rest of the day is dedicated to exploring this fantastic metropolis, populated by a diverse and unforgettable citizenry of pub-goers and theatergoers, writers, wits, patriots and poets. Enjoy the wide streets and graceful promenades of Dublin south of the River Liffey, and the stops for high culture and high fashion on Dawson and Grafton streets.
Dinner at the hotel
Day 3: A Tour of Ireland’s Spectacular Southeast After breakfast, load the coach and head south, through the soft and gentle undulations of County Wicklow and into the heart of southeast Ireland. You’ll enjoy the marble structures dominating the skyline of Kilkenny, one of Ireland’s best kept secrets and probably her most beautiful city. Marble edifices shine above the wide swept streets, grand structures dedicated to the glory of God and country, including Kilkenny Castle and garden, St. Canice’s Cathedral and its round tower and the priory of Dominicans at the Black Abbey. On a lighter note, Kilkenny is also widely regarded as the pub capital of Ireland, with a wide and eclectic variety of bars and public houses offering music, ambience, conversation, and numerous offerings to titillate your palate. You’ll be amazed at the testaments to the cultures who dominated here, from Celts and Vikings to Norman conquerors, all of who made their mark: witness, for example, the incomparable Rock of Cashel, one of the most beautiful and best preserved castles in all of Ireland.
Drive to the heart of the rebellious southwest and the city of Cork, which natives proudly pronounce the “true” capital of Ireland, steeped in the songs of her heroic past and continuing to offer a charming view into Irish life. Accomodation in hotel in Cork and dinner.
Day 4: Experiencing the Beauty of County Cork After Breakfast you will be droven around The second largest city in the Republic. Cork offers many of the same types of attractions as its larger and more famous eastern sister, but it retains the Celtic lifestyle somewhat absent from life in Dublin. You next visit the coastal town of Cobh, a site dominated by Cork Harbor and the arresting St. Coleman’s Cathedral, featuring the only carillon in Ireland and one of the largest in the British Isles. The maritime history of this port city is as long and illustrious as it is tragic, and the best museums in the city are dedicated to remembering and exploring this hallowed past. Plaques and exhibits commemorate the voyage of the Titanic, which departed from Cork Harbor in 1912; the sinking of the Lusitania in 1916 and the arrival of the survivors and victims of that tragedy in Cobh shortly thereafter; and the immigran Annie Moore, the first person to be admitted to the United States at the immigration center in Ellis Island.
Then make your way past Cork city and to the steps of Ireland’s most legendary edifice, Blarney Castle, where you’ll revel in the trek to the top of its fortified walls and a short, sweet kiss upon its most famous piece of masonry. (When telling this tale in the future, you’ll be sure to find your speech noticeably free, blessed as it is by your newfound gift of gab.) . The grounds of the castle – all-too-often overshadowed by the castle itself – are not to be missed and include spectacular stone statuary that are often centuries old.
Heading west from County Cork to the far ends of the Emerald Isle takes you into the embraces of County Kerry, one of the most famous areas in Ireland and arguably her most scenic.
Accomodation for 2 nights in Killarney, a quaint and charming town that has much to offer, including a vibrant Main Street filled with pubs, restaurants and shops that offer everything from fine Irish lace and elegant silver jewelry to the cold and undeniably delicious Guinness stout.
Dinner in hotel
Day 5: The Greenest Face of the Emerald Isle Breakfast and dinner at the hotel There is beautiful country to be found throughout Ireland, but it cannot be denied: nowhere is the glory of nature more prominently displayed than in the shorelines, mountains, valleys and lakes that fill County Kerry. Take a spin on the most famous stretch of road in Ireland, the incomparable Ring of Kerry, and behold the majesty of Torc Falls and the Macgillycuddy’s Reeks, the verdant serenity of the Gap of Dunloe and Ladies View, the expanse of azure of the Lakes of Killarney and the wildlife which call this breathtaking region home.
Taste the wild salmon harvested from the river Laune in a ‘700 smokery in Killorglin; admire Kerry hill sheep dog show here – they cling to the mountain side at impossible angles and seem able to thrive on nothing ; Explore Cahergal Stone Fort a circular stone fort, with a single doorway entrance and stairway as high as the wall, built during the Iron Age this fort is around 2,500 years old ; Enjoy walking in the gardens at Muckross House, an elegant Tudor estate perched between two of the famous Lakes of Killarney that once hosted Queen Victoria in 1861.
Day 6: The Iconic Shores on the Edge of the Atlantic: The Cliffs of Moher Breakfast and dinner at the hotel Today head north into County Clare, in sight of one of the most magnificent coasts and historic monuments on the planet. Ride through the quaint and charming village of Adare, one of the most colorful in Ireland with thatched-roof cottages, brightly painted storefronts, beautiful public grounds and the commanding structures of the Adare Friary and the Trinitarian Monastery. This morning you’ll cross The River Shannon, this mighty waterway at its far southern end, spanning its spectacular expanse from County Kerry into the striking countryside of County Clare A short drive takes you from Limerick to Bunratty Castle, a structure more than a millennium old and filled with incredible sights. Lovingly and painstakingly restored in 1954, the castle offers a remarkable collection of medieval furniture and Celtic architecture, and vividly recreates life in Ireland during the Middle Ages.
Continue up the coast until you reach the iconic Cliffs of Moher, the quintessence of Ireland’s rugged West, soaring 700 feet above the churning surf of the Atlantic. Gaze into the sea toward Galway Bay and the famous Aran Islands. Stop by O’Brien’s Tower to experience the cliffs at their highest point, or take a trip to the Cliff’s visitors center, lauded by many as one of the finest of its kind in the world.
Then head northeast into the heart of the Burren, a stunning and singular limestone landscape that is one of the largest in Europe and home to some of the most diverse and most exquisite species of flora and fauna in Ireland. You’ll see hawks and crows in flight, butterflies floating above the fissures of rock, where beautiful flowers and crawling vines makes their way, seemingly impossibly, out from this lunar-like landscape. You’ll also experience highpoints of human achievement, as the Burren hosts most than 90 megalithic tombs, including the balancing beauty of the dolmens.
Continue north and into the heart of County Galway
Day 7: Connemara The Heart of the Gaeltecht Breakfast and dinner at the hotel This morning you leave the urban areas of western Ireland to venture to the region of Connemara, where Irish is still the primary language and where gaelic culture is not only alive, but thriving. Situated at the very edge of Europe, on the west coast of Ireland, is one of the most beautiful, unspoilt places it’s possible to find. The landscape , with a superb beauty , is dominated by expanses of heather , peat bogs , lakes , bays and the mountains of the ” Twelve Bens “. Oscar Wilde described it as a ‘savage beauty’ and its patchwork of brooding lakes, rugged mountains, and windswept bogs certainly gives a sense of splendid isolation. But Connemara is also home to some of Ireland’s finest beaches, with wide stretches of pure white sands lapped by turquoise seas, and to picturesque fishing villages, tranquil coves, dramatic islands and some of the richest culture and traditions in Europe As we travel from Galway we take the scenic coast road along the coast of Galway bay.
One can see across the bay the Burren and the Aran islands unfold. Our first stop is in the quaint fishing village of Spiddal often refered to as the ‘Gateway to the Gaeltacht’ to photo The Burren mountains, Galway Bay & the Aran Islands. Then the tour heads down to the Deserted famine village, an area heavily populated before the Great Famine. Travelling through the Connemara rugged landscape, the stacks of turf, the Connemara ponies and the old thatch cottages begin to unfold. Arriving at Maamcross, the tour stops to visit the replica cottage used in the movie “The Quiet Man”. An opportunity also to take advantage of the Connemara lakes and mountains view.
Now we are entering the wild beauty of Connemara, mountains start to rise and there are vast open breath taking spaces in the Inagh Valley, a spectacular region that divides up the Twelve Bens mountains of Connemara. Arriving now at Ireland’s most romantic building Kylemore Abbey there is an opportunity for a short coffee break . Dropping down into the village of Leenane where the film “The Field” directed by John B.
Keane was filmed, Killary Fjord (Ireland’s only fjord) unfolds. Here it is visible to see the salmon and mussel pots floating on the surface of the water where fish stocks are farmed all year round. Heading back to Galway by Cong through the Maam Valley region an area of scenic and unsurpassed beauty, Lough Corrib lake unfolds amongst the Maamturk mountains. The tour makes a final stop in Cong where there is an opportunity to see Cong village home to Cong Abbey used as the location of the Quiet Man movie. The afternoon features a return to the charming seaside village of Galway. Tour the quays and the city squares : Built on the back of the fishing industry, there is culture of all types in Galway, high and low, secular and ecclesiastical, from the towering dome of Galway Cathedral to the animated songs and stories spilling from a pub near Eyre Square. Art can be found at seemingly every corner, and history of all ages spills through the streets beckoning you to follow. The environs surrounding the city are an attraction in their own right, from the ships docked at Claddagh, the bayside area originator of the claddagh ring now famous throughout the world.
Day 8: Back to Dublin
breakfast Today sends you off in the direction of the rising sun, into the metropolitan east of Ireland Stop to visit the remains of the intriguing Clonmacnoise monastic complex, often considered built at the very centre of the island overlooking the river Shannon that represent a symbolic causeway linking north and south and dividing east from west, playing prominently in the myths of the ancient Celts. Saint Ciaran founded a monastery here in 6th century which then became a place of reverence and excellence in learning that typifies that period in Irish history, when Ireland was known as the Land of Saints and Scholars. Then head toward Kilbeggan distillery, the oldest pot-still distillery in the world and the last of its type in Ireland that you can visit as a museum of industrial archaeology. Whiskey connoisseurs can learn about the distillation process and sample some of the finest Irish whiskeys in the world. After traversing the entirety of this unforgettable nation, this afternoon sees you back to your final stop in the ancient and noble capital of Dublin, the center of Irish political, cultural and literary life for more than 300 years and a true world city. Your late afternoon, here might best be spent wandering its wide and well-maintained sidewalks along the river, as Dublin is perhaps the best city for walkers in Europe. Farewell dinner with Irish Show
Day 9: Returning Home
After a full breakfast, say goodbye to your guide and Ireland at Dublin International. After your memorable visit, your head will be filled with indelible memories, and your heart will sing with the strain of harps and the cadence of an Irish laugh: you might be ready to fly, but you’ll never be ready to leave.