2015 Irish Heritage & Dromoland Castle 8 Days / 7 Nights
Your Irish trip starts at 2:00 pm when you meet
your tour director at your Limerick hotel. Limerick
is 16 miles from Shannon Airport. Depart for a
short drive around Limerick and visit the huge
King John’s Castle, built in the 13th century on
the banks of the River Shannon to safeguard the
city. Join your tour director for a welcome drink
before heading to Knappogue or Bunratty Castle
for a medieval-style dinner and song.
Drive through Ennis to see the Cliffs of Moher,
which rise almost 700 feet above the pounding
Atlantic surf. Cross the wide River Shannon
Estuary by ferry and travel along the river shore
to Foynes. Visit the Flying Boat Museum, which
recalls the early days of air travel, during the
1930’s and early 1940’s. Learn how to make a
perfect Irish coffee as this was where the drink
was first created and sip a warming sample.
Drive to Killarney, a small town situated in one
of the loveliest locations in Ireland. Drive through
the Killarney National Park by traditional jaunting
car to view Ross Castle set on the shores of
Lough Leane with mountains forming a backdrop. Check in to your hotel and enjoy free time to relax
or go shopping before dinner.
Embark on Ireland’s most popular scenic drive,
the Ring of Kerry, for great views of mountains,
open Atlantic Ocean, beaches and cliffs. Enjoy
plenty of breaks to admire the natural beauty and
take photos. Cross to Valentia Island by bridge to
visit the Skellig Experience and learn about early
Christian monks who lived on the isolated islands
and about the prolific bird life today. Pass through
Waterville and the attractive village of Sneem and
stop at Moll’s Gap for great mountain vistas. See
more spectacular views at a nearby sheep farm
as well as demonstrations of shearing and
trained dogs herding sheep. Return to Killarney
and in the evening head to the award-winning
Killeen House Restaurant for a warm welcome
and superb cuisine.
Depart Killarney and drive to Blarney. Visit the
famous Blarney Castle and either climb to the top
to kiss the “Stone of Eloquence” or walk through
the lovely parklands and gardens. Browse through the Blarney Woollen Mills for quality Irish-made goods.
Visit the town of Cobh, last port of call for RMS Titanic, to tour
the Cobh Heritage Centre to learn about travel conditions for the
many emigrants on early sailing ships and steam vessels.
Follow the coastal route to Waterford and check in to
your hotel. In the evening take a gentle walk with a
local historian who will reveal Waterford’s Viking
and medieval past.
This morning tour the House of Waterford
Crystal to learn about glass blowing and view
one-of-a-kind masterpieces being created. Drive
through the delightful scenery of the Wicklow
Mountains on the way to Blessington. Take a
guided tour around the stately Russborough
House, a Palladian mansion filled with
interesting treasures as well as noted works
of art and early photographic collections.
Continue to your next hotel, an elegant
Victorian mansion, which overlooks Dublin
Bay and Dun Laoghaire Harbour. Dine on Irish
specialties at the Merry Ploughboy Pub, followed
by a lively show of traditional Irish songs and
Take a morning guided tour of Dublin, originally
founded by Vikings over 1,000 years ago. See
elegant Georgian townhouses with brightly-painted
doors and cross the River Liffey to view the wide
thoroughfare of O’Connell Street and the gaunt
figures at the Famine Memorial. Tour Glasnevin
Museum, Ireland’s national necropolis, which is
a who’s who of modern Irish history. It is the final
resting place of Daniel O’Connell, Michael Collins,
Charles Stewart Parnell, Brendan Behan and other prominent people. The afternoon is free so that
you may use your independent open-top bus tour
voucher with a visit to Guinness or Jameson.
Dine on your own this evening.
Dublin and drive to the Irish National Stud to see
some of Ireland’s finest horses and learn about
breeding techniques. Take a walk around the
miniature Japanese Gardens. Travel to imposing
and deluxe Dromoland Castle Hotel. Relax in the elegant surroundings of this wonderful fairytale
resort. Then savor a delicious farewell dinner in
the oak-paneled dining room – a fitting way to
spend the last evening of your Irish tour.
Your tour ends after breakfast.
B: Breakfast; L: Lunch; D: Dinner