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Northern Welcome | CIE Tours

Northern Welcome

  • 2019 Northern Welcome – 9 Days/8 Nights
feefo product rating
28 reviews
Starts Dublin
Ends Dublin
  • Tour Highlights
  • Itinerary
  • Dates and Prices
  • Reviews

Tour Highlights

Authentic Local Experiences

  • Witness a turf-cutting demonstration. Turf has been used as a fuel throughout Ireland for hundreds of years.
  • Visit the Inishowen peninsula and see the beautiful landscape that inspired a shipwrecked sailor to write the beloved hymn Amazing Grace.

Dining Experiences

  • 8 breakfasts, 1 lunch and 6 dinners including Cabra Castle welcome dinner, Walled City Brewery Restaurant, and a traditional dinner and show at the Merry Ploughboy Pub.

Trip Highlights

  • Belleek Pottery
  • Shean’s Horse Riding & Heritage Centre
  • Down Cathedral
  • Giant’s Causeway
  • Glasnevin Cemetery Museum
  • Titanic Belfast
  • Clonmacnoise Monastic Site
  • Westport House

Hotels – 8 Nights

  • Cabra Castle Hotel, Kingscourt (1 night)
  • Europa Hotel, Belfast (1 night)
  • Maldron Hotel, Derry (2 nights)
  • Clew Bay Hotel, Westport (2 nights)
  • Talbot Hotel Stillorgan, Dublin (2 nights)


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Cabra Castle Hotel, Kingscourt

Cabra Castle Hotel, Kingscourt Description:

Located in Kingscourt outside of Dublin, the Cabra Castle Hotel was built in 1760 and has high ceilings, grand staircases and historic hallways. Some of its 105 rooms are in Cabra Castle and some are in the converted 17th-century courtyard buildings, but each one has a unique individual style that mixes original period features and furnishings with modern comforts. All rooms have private bathrooms, telephones, tea/coffee-making facilities, satellite TV and complimentary Wi-Fi. Upgraded rooms add fireplaces, private balconies and 4-poster or canopy beds. Onsite there is an elegant restaurant serving fresh local food and also a traditional bar. The hotel’s patios and terraces have expansive views of the surrounding 100 acres of gardens and countryside.

Europa Hotel, Belfast

Europa Hotel, Belfast Description:

This well-established hotel offers 272 bedrooms with every comfort and luxury, including soundproofing to ensure a good night’s sleep. Enjoy good food, live piano and street views at the Piano Bar upstairs. Head to The Causerie for snacks and specials or to the Lobby Bar for drinks and pub grub. Located on Great Victoria Street, in the heart of Belfast. The Opera House is next door, and the historic Crown Liquor Saloon is across the street. Within easy walking distance of Donegall Square.

Maldron Hotel Derry, Derry

Maldron Hotel Derry, Derry Description:

This is a stylish hotel with 90 spacious and comfortable guest rooms, which are well equipped. The Walls Restaurant which overlooks the historic city walls has been awarded an AA rosette and a passion for good food is evident. The Lyric Bar at the Tower Hotel is a music themed bar, a fitting tribute to a city renowned for its musical tradition. Guests can relax in the leisure suite complete with sauna and steam room. The hotel is located on Butcher Street, just within the historic city walls and within easy reach of city attractions.

Clew Bay Hotel, Westport

Clew Bay Hotel, Westport Description:

This family-owned and managed hotel is ideally located for exploring the charming town of Westport House, or for touring Achill lsland or Connemara. All bedrooms are individually decorated and fitted with every comfort and convenience. Dine on the extensive menu featuring local produce at the contemporary Madden’s Bistro, or enjoy a drink, snack or live entertainment at Madden’s Bar. The hotel is located on James’s Street in the center of Westport, a heritage town, and is within walking distance of shops, restaurants and pubs.

Talbot Hotel Stillorgan, Dublin

Talbot Hotel Stillorgan, Dublin Description:

This hotel offers 150 air-conditioned, modern guest rooms with all conveniences for a comfortable stay. Enjoy the award-winning restaurant for breakfasts and dinners while the bar provides a place to relax with a drink or casual meal. Keep up your exercise program in the White Pebble Day Spa and gym. Located on Stillorgan Road on the south side of Dublin city, this hotel is 4 miles from the city center. Served by frequent city bus services and taxis.


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Northern Welcome 9 Days / 8 Nights / 15 MEALS

B: Breakfast; L: Lunch; D: Dinner

Day 1Dublin Arrival & Cabra Castle Hotel

Your tour begins at 2:00 PM at the Cabra Castle Hotel for afternoon tea. The hotel is 50 miles from Dublin Airport, so enjoy the views as you travel up (please note: if you book your flights with us, you will get free transfers from the airport.) The hotel is set on spacious grounds with a 9-hole golf course. In the evening enjoy a welcome drink and dine in the hotel restaurant. (D)

Day 2St. Patrick’s Country & Titanic Belfast

Admire the gentle slopes of the Mourne Mountains and peaceful coastline as you travel north to Down Cathedral. Tour the ancient cathedral and view the historical burial place of St. Patrick, Ireland’s patron saint, marked by a huge boulder. Drive to Belfast to join a local guide for a tour of central Belfast to see prominent buildings, political murals and the docks where the RMS Titanic was built in 1912. Visit the magnificent Titanic Belfast, a state-of-the-art attraction that will immerse you in the story of this iconic liner. (B, D)

Day 3Turf Cutting & Giant’s Causeway

Drive north along the Glens of Antrim, one of Ireland’s popular scenic routes to discover lovely views of mountains, valleys, and coastline. This area is where many scenes from “Game of Thrones” were filmed. Visit Sheans Horse Riding & Heritage Centre for tea with scones and a turf-cutting demonstration. Visit The Causeway Coast Discovery Centre for tea with scones and a turf-cutting demonstration. Visit the natural wonder that is Giant’s Causeway, hexagonal columns formed by volcanic activity over 60 million years ago. Continue to Derry where you’ll have time to explore or relax before dinner. (B, D)

Day 4Inishowen Peninsula & Derry’s Walls

Travel around the Inishowen Peninsula, a 100-mile scenic route. Drive alongside Lough Foyle, to Banba's Crown on Malin Head, the most northerly point of the Irish mainland, to admire stunning seascapes. Enjoy tea and scones with your fellow travelers at the Seaview Tavern before continuing towards Buncrana. Upon returning to Derry, join a local guide for a short walk around Derry’s medieval city walls that completely encircle the old city center. Learn about the development of the settlement throughout the centuries. Take a walk across the Peace Bridge and complete your tour at the Walled City Brewery Restaurant for dinner with a flight of beers and a bottle of CIE Tours' signature beer to take away. (B, D)

Day 5Donegal & Belleek Pottery

Travel through rugged countryside with magnificent scenery to Donegal town where you will have some leisure time to explore independently. Visit Belleek Pottery, founded in the 19th century to bring employment to the area. See how craftspeople shape and decorate raw material to create this world-famous fine china. At a local farm, watch as a farmer works with skilled dogs to herd sheep. In Westport, a local guide will escort you on a gentle walk through this historic and planned town center before dinner. (B, D)

Day 6Westport House & Achill Island Tour

Travel around Clew Bay, which is reputed to have 365 islands, to access Achill Island by bridge. Follow the Atlantic Drive to capture wonderful views of steeply sloped mountains plunging into the shimmering Atlantic Ocean. Near Slievemore see the Deserted Village and stop in Keel for a casual lunch. Return to Westport and take a tour around the stately Westport House, which overlooks the ocean and contains a wealth of interesting portraits, furniture, silver, and porcelain.Enjoy a glass of beer or wine there. The evening is free for independent exploration and dining. (B, L)

Day 7Galway & Clonmacnoise

Enjoy a gentle walking tour around central Galway to see Eyre Square, Galway Cathedral, and the Spanish Arch. On Shop Street, view the medieval Lynch’s Castle, once home to Galway’s most powerful family. Then browse on your own through narrow streets that are closed to traffic. Visit Clonmacnoise, a monastic settlement founded in 545 AD and set on the banks of the River Shannon. Head to Dublin, where you'll visit the Merry Ploughboy for dinner and traditional entertainment followed by an Irish coffee. (B)

Day 8Dublin & Glasnevin Cemetery Museum

Take a guided tour of Dublin to see elegant Georgian townhouses with brightly painted doors and the wide thoroughfare of O’Connell Street. Tour Glasnevin Cemetery Museum, Ireland’s national necropolis, a “Who’s Who” of modern Irish history. Spend the afternoon touring independently, with your tickets to the Hop-On, Hop-Off bus tour, and choose one of four of Ireland's most popular attractions: Guinness Storehouse, the GPO Museum, EPIC Ireland, or Teeling Distillery. (B)

Day 9Tour Ends in Dublin

Your program ends after breakfast. (B)

Dates and Prices

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Oct 2019

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All prices listed below are per person, double-occupancy.
If you would prefer a single room, there is a single-room supplement of US $450.
Due to an unexpected government VAT increase your tour price
will also include a maximum $40 USD per person cost.
All charges will be converted to local currency when you purchase.

Start End Price
Saturday Sep 28, 2019 from Dublin Sunday Oct 6, 2019 to Dublin 9 Days $2349 Guaranteed Call to book
Saturday Oct 5, 2019 from Dublin Sunday Oct 13, 2019 to Dublin 9 Days $2299 Guaranteed Call to book
Saturday Oct 19, 2019 from Dublin Sunday Oct 27, 2019 to Dublin 9 Days $2499 Guaranteed Small Group Book Now

28 Reviews

Customer: Vanessa Lee Mozayani

Date: 11/06/2018

From the moment we booked the tour to the time we left our tour group, we received first quality service. The staff are friendly and are able to answer any questions we had. The accommodation was first class with meals also pleasing. We didn't have to worry about our luggage as it was picked up from our room after the end of every stay, and was up in our room by the time we had been allocated our rooms. The pace of the tour was perfect. We met some beautiful new friends on tour. It is the perfect way to travel. Highly recommend CIE tours.

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 12/22/2018

I would definitely recommend them. Our tour guide was truly excellent: knowledgeable, personable, witty and funny, extremely patient. He had the challenging task of not only being a tour guide, but also driving around almost 40 of us, herding us from place to place and rounding up latecomers. The hotels we stayed in were very nice, with great restaurants. I was with a party of four, and we all agreed that we got to see and experience things we wouldn't have done on our own.

Customer: Janet Rains Taylor

Date: 09/04/2019

Excellent service!

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 08/24/2019

The week after we booked the trip the price dropped and extra things were given.

Customer: Robynn Elizabeth Meehan

Date: 08/23/2019

Tour Guide Tom Hegerty was wonderful. We enjoyed the tour, but had some suggestions/complaints... 1-Norwegian Air was terrible. Travel to Dublin, we didnt get food until we insisted we ordered. My Celiac Disease was not communicated from CIE to Norwegian. I couldn't eat the meal we finally got after everyone else had finished. On trip home, I again couldn't eat the meal. 2-lack of communication regarding air check in 3-1st day of the tour was wasted. Our hotel room was not ready until after 4:30pm, really unacceptable. To have the first night spent in a location so far away from anything . We couldnt even explore. 4- We felt CIE should have realized the hotel in Derry was so close the the wall and it being the 50 anniversary of the uprising, not well planned at all. Was scary to say the least. The helicopters kept us up all night. The police presence and armed guards were very upsetting. 5- I felt the food on our last CIE tour was better, not as much Celiac accomodating. 6- Our Guide Tom Hegerty was great, he was so accomodating and helpful. Without Tom, we would have been thoroughly disappointed. 7-My luggage was damaged (wheel broken on flight to Dublin), which made it tough to move. 8-CIE needs a contact emergency number for the driver to give to all the travelers. I left my purse on the bus and couldnt reach Tom to let him know to hold it for me, as he was turning our bus in to be fixed. It is not a good idea for the guide to give his personal number, it should be a number from CIE. 9-The Europa Hotel was horrible and smelled of smoke. 10-Thought the trip could have better logistics, too much bus riding to get somewhere and eating at 7pm everynight was too late. We were then not able to go out in the evening to enjoy some local music/pubs because we had to be up so early.

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 08/09/2019

I liked the option to have a smaller group tour. That’s more my style. Our driver/guide was outstanding. Great hotels. Would be nice if pre-trip info could’ve been mailed to Canada. Makes no sense to receive at destination.

Customer: Rosemary Fay Hill

Date: 07/19/2019

The tour itself was great. We had a problem with meeting up with our guide at the airport. Our flight came into Terminal 1 and the agent was at Terminal 2. We could not find anyone in the Deblin baggage claim area to help us get to Terminal 2. We finally found our way there into the departure area but needed the arrival area. An airport worker finally helped us. I felt that the tour guide should have known we were coming into Terminal 1 and had someone there for us. CIE did set up the flight.

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 07/04/2019

The tour was great! Especially with our guide/ driver Dennis.

Customer: Francis James Mcfadden

Date: 06/28/2019

What a wonderful experience! I Our tour provided the perfect blend of historical information, beautiful scenery and fine entertainment. Our tour guide, Dennis O'Sullivan, was an expert driver, great commentator and fun loving comedian! We left Ireland full of life long memories. I highly recommend CIE.

Customer: Judith Madeline Girard

Date: 06/13/2019

Excellent tour. Driver/guide Dennis was awesome. Highly recommend....

Customer: Rebecca Ann Abel-Kennedy

Date: 04/08/2019

I absolutley loved them. I spoke to one Irish lady(loved that she was Irish and not American) and she was so helpful. She made a wonderful impression of CIE and went above and beyond to help with my booking. I spoke to other CIE employees as well and they were all experts and I felt like I was in good hands.

Customer: Laurene Lee Stirone

Date: 03/23/2019

Definitely my patient tour guide on my 7th trip. Small group got to ask lots of questions !!! Booking and organizing was fine.

Customer: Mary Lynn Mitchell

Date: 12/25/2018

Overall, the tour was very good, except for some of the hotels. Firstly, my name was again not correct on the roster and name badge. This is the second tour on which this has happened. I already wrote two years ago of this same issue. Sorry, you may think I am picky, but I happen to like my full first name, Mary Lynn. Customer Feedback was totally ignored on this issue. Secondly, we were never told that our first hotel was being switched from Cabra Castle to BarbersTown Castle, Kildare. Although it was nice, it was quite a distance from the original start off point, necessitating a much earlier start time on the departure date. We should have been told before the Tour left the US and not after traveling all night and finding out upon arrival. You had plenty of time to send an email. Thirdly, the Maldron Hotel was very dirty, with spots all over the carpet in my room and hallways. The hotel in Stilogran was quite a distance from the City Centre, making it not very inaccessible especially after dark. Would much have preferred a hotel within walking distance of the City Centre. On my tour in 2016 there were similar hotel issues in Glencoe. I see the Isle of Glencoe Hotel is still being used on this tour. I feel none of my input on the 2016 survey made any difference, and I doubt if this time will be any different.

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 12/20/2018

I was booking "Scottish Isles & Glens" & "The Outer Hebrides", two trips to Scotland, concurrently for 2019 with a tag on trip at the end of the second tour. I was very demanding but the CIE staff were very patient and helpful. Everything was booked to my perfect satisfaction! I have already done "Elegant Ireland" and "Northern Welcome". Both were fabulous which is why I'm back for more.

Customer: Mr. William Paul Bain Jr

Date: 12/21/2018

Very nice tour

Customer: Mr. David Charles Page

Date: 11/12/2018

Couldn’t fault the tour.

Customer: Ms. Jean Stephanie Hess Walsh

Date: 11/12/2018

Never got my welcome package...mailed to travel agent not me, or tour guide. Dull side Derry on a Sunday, so all key buildings were closed...bad planning, bad local tour people for the stops

Customer: Ms. Mary Jane Patrick

Date: 11/12/2018

I had a terrific time, everyone was so nice. The tour went smoothly, our guide was great and very helpful.

Customer: Benoit Bedard

Date: 11/10/2018

A répondu à toutes mes questions de façon professionnelle. Réservation faite rapide et fluide. Mais nous avons acheté le vol inclus et les sièges furent les pires que nous avons eût dans tous nos voyages: les deux derniers sièges à l'arrière de l'avion. Et ceci pour les vols aller et retour. Très décu. American Airlines n'ont pas voulu nous déplacer.

Customer: Kevin Mark Evans

Date: 11/07/2018

Fine except for some automated email that said all my reservations had been cancelled. Once I call they told me it was wrong.

Customer: Mr. Arthur Edward Magee

Date: 11/07/2018

First rate service, great documentation and communication.

Customer: Matthew Allan Mccready

Date: 11/07/2018

The booking was great. It was very easy. We were even able to arrange to add extra days on to our tour before and after through CIE.

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 11/07/2018

Food and hotels

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 11/07/2018

Every aspect of our planned trip to Northern Ireland was taken care of and was top notch. You made it so easy for us to just ENJOY!

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 11/06/2018

Our second CIE tour. It was a wonderful experience!

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 11/06/2018

The initial experience with booking and flights was a 1. The tour, hotels and driver/guide were a 5.

Customer: William Paul Gasparik

Date: 11/06/2018

They made things easy. Was able to make 2 payments and check all details.

Customer: CIE Tours Customer

Date: 11/06/2018

Pretty much everything was done very well. We were very pleased.

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