The Republic of Ireland occupies most of the island of Ireland, off the coast of England and Wales. Its capital, Dublin, is the birthplace of writers like Oscar Wilde, and home of Guinness beer. The 9th-century Book of Kells and other illustrated manuscripts are on show in Dublin’s Trinity College Library. Dubbed the “Emerald Isle” for its lush landscape, the country is dotted with castles like medieval Cahir Castle.
3 Hours Before Flight Time
Tread in the footsteps of James Joyce and Oscar Wilde, through the lyrical streets of Dublin – your launch pad to a memorable encounter with Ireland’s iconic highlights. After a leisurely morning, meet a Local Specialist for a sightseeing tour with views of Trinity College, St. Patrick’s Cathedral and the stately Georgian Squares. Indulge in a little Irish craic this evening, joining your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception.
We journey to Galway, the City of Tribes, where we’ll see its stone cathedral on the banks of the Corrib and spend some free time exploring its colourful façades. Irish traditions and heritage are explored next, during a visit to Bunratty Castle and its Folk Park, a living history museum that reveals insights into life in Ireland during the 18th and 19th centuries. Be sure to drop into Mac’s for a pint and meet the Bean an Tí and try to spot a fairy. Then, it’s on to Limerick, our home for the night. Spend a free evening enjoying the world-renowned hospitality of the Irish.
This morning view the 13th-century King John’s Castle overlooking the Shannon, St. Mary’s Cathedral and the Treaty Stone during your orientation in Limerick. Our first stop is the spectacular Cliffs of Moher where we will learn about their history during a visit to the ‘Atlantic Edge’ exhibition. After a picturesque coastal drive through the villages of Lahinch and Kilrush, we take the ferry across the Shannon estuary. Our home for the next two nights is the colourful little town of Killarney.
Circle the spectacular Ring of Kerry – its emerald green hills, centuries-old stone villages and vivid blue seascapes provide a soul-stirring backdrop for our leisurely drive around a beautiful coastline that has inspired writers and poets for centuries. We’ll see Daniel O’Connell’s Cahirciveen, the fishing village of Waterville, Moll’s Gap and the Black Valley, renowned for being the last place in Ireland without electricity and telephone networks.
Cross the rugged Kerry Mountains and travel to Blarney Castle to kiss the stone and acquire the ‘gift of the gab’. En route to Waterford, we stop in the historic seaport town of Youghal, once home to Sir Walter Raleigh. This evening we dine in our hotel.
‘Dive Into Culture’ and witness the centuries-old tradition of crafting fine glass at the House of Waterford Crystal. Here we will watch the talented master craftsmen in their workshop creating exquisite pieces. Our next stop is in the town of New Ross, where we’ll see the monument to John F. Kennedy who travelled to his ancestral family hometown in 1963. We’ll visit the three-masted famine ship Dunbrody and ‘Dive Into Culture’ yet again, gaining insights into the tragic plight of the Irish emigrants who fled the potato famine during the 1800s. Continuing through County Wexford and the lush countryside of County Wicklow, we journey to Dublin stopping en route at Glenealy Farmhouse, where we’ll ‘Connect With Locals’ over a Be My Guest dinner and meet the Fulvio family.
For now, it’s time to say a fond slán abhaile to your fellow travellers as you close the curtain on an unforgettable journey through the Emerald Isle. Airport transfers are available. Conditions apply.