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Escape to the West 5 Day Tour of Ireland from Dublin

Escape to the West 5 Day Tour of Ireland from Dublin

Join a small group tour to discover the scenic, historic and cultural highlights of Southwest Ireland, from dramatic sea cliffs to ancient monasteries and castles - this is a tour that will bring the country to life!

Meet the locals in a traditional pub, sample local seafood, walk on stunning Atlantic beaches or explore prehistoric ruins – Ireland has a lot to offer.

Stay 1 night in Galway and 3 nights in the lively little town of Killarney.

A small group tour with a maximum of 16 passengers really does make a big difference to your trip! It allows your guides to give you more personal service. You get more for your money and will have the opportunity to meet people from all over the world and make friends for life.

  • Details
  • Description
  • Cancellation Policy
  • Related Photos

Tour/Activity Details

Length

5 days

Time

9:00 am - Tuesday, Thursday & Sunday (April through October)

3 Weeks Minimum Advance Booking Required. Minimum age is 5. Hotel pickup not included. Rates are per person in US Dollars. Please order online or call 212-852-4822 to order or for more information.

Description

Tour Highlights:

  • Cliffs of Moher
  • Dingle Peninsula
  • Ring of Kerry
  • Torc Waterfall
  • The Burren
  • Clonmacnoise
  • Blarney Stone

Inclusions:

  • Transportation by Mercedes minicoach, air Conditioning standard
  • Services of a professional driver/guide
  • Four nights accommodations

Not Included:

  • Any Attraction Entrances
  • Meals
  • Driver/Guide Gratuity

Tour Itinerary:

DAY ONE -- Departing Dublin, you head west through the farmland and peat bogs of counties Kildare and Offally. The first stop is the Locke's Distillery – reputedly the oldest legal distillery in the world. Sample the local whiskey and discover the true spirit of Ireland! Further west, you will reach the mighty Shannon River and the early Christian site of Clonmacnoise – with its collection of churches, stone crosses and round towers. After an afternoon stop in a traditional pub in the village of Shannonbridge, travel into Galway City for your first night. This lively student town has no shortage of good pubs and restaurants.

DAY TWO -- From Galway City it is only a short drive along the coast to the Burren – one of Ireland’s great natural treasures. This is a land of limestone pavements, barren hillsides, rare flora, early Christian settlements and ancient stone monuments. You will spend most of the morning exploring this unique area. You will stop in Kilfenora, the “town of the crosses”, for a visit to the old cathedral and then have lunch in one of the pretty local villages. After lunch you will visit the stunning Cliffs of Moher, which drop almost 700 feet into the crashing Atlantic waves. Here you can walk the cliff top trails, watch the numerous seabirds or visit the award winning environmental exhibition. From here you travel south through County Clare passing the famous golf course and beach at Lahinch to catch the ferry across the Shannon estuary and into County Kerry to the beautiful lakeside town of Killarney – your base for the next 3 nights. The pubs here are great for food and most have live music in the evenings – your only problem is which one to choose!

DAY THREE -- The tour today will explore the wonderful Dingle Peninsula – one of the most scenic parts of Ireland and a heartland of Gaelic culture and tradition. The first stop of the day is the beach at Inch – a vast expanse of sand facing out into the Atlantic and very popular with surfers. From here, increasingly narrow roads lead onto the peninsula itself, through the town of Dingle and out to Slea Head. This is an area of ancient forts and dwellings going back thousands of years and you will visit some of the best examples along the way. The views here are impressive with the nearby Blasket Islands rising dramatically from the sea and the mountains of the Ring of Kerry to the south. Weather permitting, you will be able to walk on the beaches or along the cliff tops to fully appreciate the fabulous scenery. This area is very important in Gaelic literature and you will learn more about that during the day. The circuit of Slea Head leads back to Dingle town with its brightly colored buildings and busy harbor. You will spend the rest of the afternoon here before returning to Killarney. If the weather is good, you could take an evening walk in the Killarney National Park – just on the edge of town.

DAY FOUR -- Today you tour one of the world’s classic routes, the Ring of Kerry - 100 miles packed full of interest. After departing Killarney on a clear day there will be views to Ireland’s highest mountain, Carrauntoohil after which you join the coast road through Glenbeigh and Kells to Cahersiveen. There will be plenty of opportunities for photos stops along the way with great views across to the Dingle Peninsula. Possible stops include the Daniel O’Connell’s birthplace and Cahersiveen ring fort before reaching the little fishing village of Portmagee. Here you can relax and sample local seafood for lunch or alternatively cross to the island of Valencia for a visit to the Skellig Experience where you can learn about the nearby rocky islands and the small community of monks who once lived there. In the afternoon you make photo stops in Waterville, a favourite holiday place for Charlie Chaplin, and then at the top of Coonmakista Pass for one of the best views in the country. From here the road drops down to sea level for a visit to Derrynane House – family home of Daniel O’Connell. There are walks in the gardens and down to the beach as well as the house itself. The tour continues on around the Ring with stops at Moll’s Gap and the Ladies View. There is time for a short walk to the Torc Waterfall before arriving back into Killarney. Please Note: Occasionally, the itineraries of days 3 and 4 may be reversed.

DAY FIVE -- Today you head back east through the mountains of West Cork and the market town of Macroom; then along the Lee Valley to Blarney Castle. Here you will have time to visit the castle, explore the woodland walks and mystical Rock Close as well as visiting the village of Blarney itself – a good place for a bite of lunch and a bit of shopping. There may even be the chance to kiss the famous Blarney Stone, although in peak season it can be very busy. In the afternoon the tour continues on to the heritage town of Cahir with its impressive castle on an island in the River Suir. The final stop of the tour is Kilkenny, a bustling city with a fine Castle, riverside walks, the National Craft Centre and plenty pubs for one last Guinness before hitting the road again for the last leg of a wonderful journey, arriving back into Dublin about 7:30 pm.

Frequently Asked Questions

What's a small group tour like? -- Small group tours can give you so much more. Your tours, guides and mini-coaches have been hand selected to show you the best of the country. By getting off the beaten track and onto the back-roads, you will get to where only smaller tours can go - closer to the real people and local lives, past and present. Time off the bus is important too, and your guides pride themselves on getting you out there among the locals for a truly authentic experience.

What kind of vehicle is used for transport? -- Your tour will only travel in low-emission modern Mercedes mini-coaches. They have big panoramic windows (3 out of 4 seats are window seats), stereo systems, full sized reclining seats (with seat belts) and more leg room than the average coach.

What are the guides like? -- The guides are each hand-picked for their pride and passion for the areas they tour. Chosen for their expertise, knowledge and ability to entertain, they will regale you with folklore, myths, history and legend. And this isn't left to chance - these guides have won many awards, testament to how they want to be a part of your experience. Everything possible will be done to ensure you get a great tour, led by a great guide...someone you know really cares about what they do and how they do it. Guides like to "live life" and explore places that have stories to tell and people to tell them.

What language is spoken on the tour? -- Clear-spoken English. Your guides can provide detailed tour itineraries and a short piece of local history translated into Spanish, French, German and Italian available on request.

What is the age range on these tours? -- From 5 years old to 80 years young! The majority are 25 to 65.

Are children allowed on this tour? -- Children ages 5 and older are welcome. Under fives are not allowed for the sake of the child as much as everyone else.

Are there stops on the tour? -- Absolutely! Your guides want you to enjoy the best of Ireland as much as possible, and they believe the best way to do this is to get you off the minibus as often as possible. They ensure this with a mixture of photo stops, comfort stops and some walks.

Are there plenty of walks? -- Yes, and you will be given opportunities to really experience the fresh air and the beautiful scenery from outside the vehicle. These walks are optional and good footwear is advisable.

Where will we stay on tours? -- The rate you choose to book is specific for the type of accommodation you would like while on this tour. The choices are B & B and Hotel (3 or 4 star). Accommodations are dispersed around the towns and villages, rarely more than a 10-15 minute walk from the centre, although on occasions this can be 20-30 minutes. Taxis are available for a small fee if you feel it's necessary. If you have access needs or specific requirements please provide that information when booking. Late bookings and/or peak season may limit the choice and location of available accommodation.

How does the lodging work on the tour? -- Your driver/guide will drop you off at your accommodation and pick you up in the morning so you have no need to worry about shifting luggage or getting lost. It's a small group tour, so you won't get lost in the crowd.

How much do the optional attractions/entry fees and the meals on the tours cost?

Attractions:

  • Kilbeggan Distillery - €7.50 Adult
  • The Skellig Experience - €5 Adults, €4 Concessions, €3 Child
  • Derrynane House - €3 Adult, Senior €2, Student €1
  • Blarney Castle €10, Concessions €8
  • Cliffs of Moher €6, Concessions €4
  • Clonmacnoise €6, Seniors €4, Students €2

Meals: -- During this excursion, the bus will stop in small, quaint towns and villages where you can choose between cafes, pubs, bakeries or restaurants; there is something to suit every budget.

How far in advance should we book? -- To avoid disappointment, it is always best to book as far in advance as possible.

Should we tip the driver/guide - and how much? -- If you feel your driver/guide has provided excellent service and want to provide a gratuity, they will love it! The amount is entirely at your discretion.

Should we take out travel insurance? -- Travel insurance is highly recommend and you will have the option to purchase insurance during the ordering process.

3 Weeks Minimum Advance Booking Required. Minimum age is 5. Hotel pickup not included. Rates are per person in US Dollars. Please order online or call 212-852-4822 to order or for more information.

Cancellation Policy

There are no refunds. All sales are final.

Change policy

If changes are allowed on a tour or activity, a $20.00 per reservation change fee will be applied for any change to a reservation. Please note that some tours and activities do not allow any changes. Date changes can only be made only if we can confirm availability on the new date. While we cannot guarantee any changes can be made, all change requests must be submitted a minimum of 24 hours prior to the tour departure and must be handled on an individual basis through our Reservations Center.

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Calendar Key

Rates All rates are in US Dollars

Event Date:

December 31, 1969