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Country Roads of Ireland (insightvacations)

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Dublin, Ireland

Belfast, United Kingdom

12 days, 11 nights

May 2024 to September 2024

US$ 4695.00 (1 adult - twin)


Trip Type:

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Countries:

Country Roads

Europe

Ireland, Northern Ireland


Options end itineraryair offersseason itineraryitinerary
Choose option Belfast false Summer Classic
Choose option Dublin false Summer Classic
Choose option Belfast false Summer Small Groups
Choose option Dublin false Summer Small Groups

Highlights


Dining Summary

  • 5 Dinner with Wine (DW)
  • 11 Breakfast (B)

Choice Highlights

  • Choose between two carefully selected activities
  • Killarney: Enjoy a memorable ride on a horse-drawn jaunting car with the local jarveys as you explore the lush scenery of Killarney National Park.
  • Killarney: Join a gentle hike with a nature guide in Killarney National Park and admire stunning mountains, lakes, woods and waterfalls. Stroll along the lake shore and past the impressive 15th Century Ross Castle and the famous Muckross Estate, a charming 19th Century mansion and grounds. Alternatively, enjoy a memorable ride on a horse-drawn jaunting car with the local jarveys.

Additional Included Highlights

  • : Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.
  • : Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • : We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
  • : From time to time, your Travel Director will delight you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.
  • : Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
  • : If your arrival and/or departure flights are as per the itinerary start and end dates, then transfers are available at scheduled times. If your flights are outside these times, or you have booked additional nights accommodation with Insight Vacations, you may purchase transfers or make your own way from/to the airport.

Authentic Dining

  • Dublin: Join your Travel Director for a warm and friendly Welcome Dinner, an opportunity to get to know each other over a meal with wine.
  • Ballygalley: The Irish call it 'craic' - the warm feeling resulting from the confluence of music, drink, good food, laughter, and conversation. And after circumnavigating the Emerald Isle, there's bound to be a fair share of craic at your grand finale Celebration Dinner. Sláinte!

Insight Choice

  • Killarney: Enjoy a memorable ride on a horse-drawn jaunting car with the local jarveys as you explore the lush scenery of Killarney National Park.
  • Killarney: Join a gentle hike with a nature guide in Killarney National Park and admire stunning mountains, lakes, woods and waterfalls. Stroll along the lake shore and past the impressive 15th Century Ross Castle and the famous Muckross Estate, a charming 19th Century mansion and grounds. Alternatively, enjoy a memorable ride on a horse-drawn jaunting car with the local jarveys.

Insight Experiences

  • Dublin: A stunning combination of cobblestone walkways, emerald-green lawns and 18th-century architectural gems, Trinity College is one of Europe’s elite universities and counts poet Oscar Wilde among its alumni. See the enchanting college campus and discover insights into its impressive history. Enjoy access to view the famous Book of Kells, an exquisite manuscript of the four gospels of the Christian New Testament, renowned for the intricacy, detail and majesty of the illustrations.
  • Kildare: Horse-racing is key part of Irish culture; and you'll get a rare peek into it over your visit to the Irish National Stud. Set in Kildare at the breeding ground of champions and the birthplace of legends, explore the foaling unit, museum and the stallions that continue to make racing history. As the only stud farm in Ireland open to the public, learn the insights of horse-racing at a site whose former visitors include queens and presidents.
  • Kilkenny: Visit Kilkenny Castle with a Local Expert. On a guided tour, learn the history of this magnificent castle and that of the powerful family that came to call it home for so many centuries. Amble through the Picture Gallery, library, drawing room, nursery and bedrooms decorated in 1830s splendor as well as the rolling parkland formal terraced rose garden, woodlands and man-made lake.
  • Blarney: It is said that those who kiss the Blarney Stone, the famous stone of eloquence, are bestowed with the power to persuade, flatter and coax. Take your turn at giving it a peck knowing that the stone was sourced from 330-million-year-old limestone.
  • Londonderry: There's no better way to experience sightseeing than with one of Northern Ireland's best storytellers, Ronan, as he takes you on a tour inside the city walls. See the Gothic Guildhall and the Georgian houses of Shipquay Street.

Make Travel Matter

  • Killarney: Meet passionate restaurant owners John and Freda at their beautiful guesthouse in Killarney, where you'll hear more about their farm-to-table concept, while enjoying a delicious meal made from fresh ingredients sourced within a five mile radius. John and Freda have a policy that all food is sourced locally from farms and the coach of the Emerald Isle. On the farm they also grow and harvest all their own fruit and veg. They educate their visitors about sustainable consumption and the benefits of eating fresh homegrown produce. This experience advances UN Sustainable Development Goal 12: Responsible Consumption & Production.
  • Giant's Causeway: Visit the legendary Giant's Causeway, site of wonders. At the visitor center, learn about the efforts to protect biodiversity and ecosystems, participating in habitat restoration. The National Trust charity has been undertaking replanting activities in Innisfree Farm, adjacent to the Causeway. By sowing a field of Herbal Ley seed mixes containing up to 17 different species, they have prioritized biodiversity and quality food production leaving a low carbon footprint. This experience advances UN Sustainable Development Goal 15: Life on Land.

Top Rated Highlights

  • Dublin: During your orientation with your Travel Director, see Custom House and travel along the River Liffey. See the Guinness Brewery, Christchurch Cathedral and St. Patrick's Cathedral.
  • Cahir: See one of the largest castles in Ireland.
  • Cork: Ireland's second city - "Rebel Cork" dates back to the 7th century. Your Travel Director will show you the Grand Parade and South Mall, along with City Hall and the Opera House on an insightful orientation tour encompassing the development of the religious settlement of St. Finbarr, to Viking raiding and settlement, to the creation of the Norman city and Merchant Princes. You’ll love learning the tales and history of this port city and enjoy hearing the lilt of the Cork accent.
  • Ring of Kerry: Venture into a world of towering cliffs, lush lakelands, beaches, fields dotted with sheep, rocky coastline, remote villages and historical sites, as you journey the magical Ring of Kerry. This 111-mile circular route is the best place to admire Ireland's scenic beauty and truly one of the most beautiful drives in the world.
  • Killarney: Enjoy hearing of the history of Killarney during your city orientation.
  • Dingle Peninsula: Enjoy a scenic drive to Slea Head.
  • Ballygalley: Explore this seaside town with your Travel Director.
  • Carrickfergus: See the immense Castle as your drive around it.
  • Belfast: Meet Hilda, a true Belfast local, having lived in the same house her entire life. During your panoramic tour, hear about the history of the city and learn why Hilda is proud of its progress and current prosperity. You'll also see the City Hall, Queen's University, Parliament Building at Stormont and murals in different locations indicating political sentiments of local residents.
  • Cliffs of Moher: Towering cliffs and the dramatic sea, the Cliffs of Moher has inspired countless travelers. Visit the Exhibition Center and look out over the Wild Atlantic Way from these majestic cliffs that rise over 700 feet high. Gain insights from your Travel Director into the cliffs’ geology, history and the species that find sanctuary in its nooks and crannies.
  • Galway: Fascinating stories and interesting locals take center stage on your orientation of the historic heart of Galway. Visit the Lynch Memorial Window. Then make your way to the Church of St. Nicholas - the largest medieval parish church in Ireland in continuous use, Spanish Arch and Eyre Square.

Well-being

  • : Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxurious, air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom and onboard washroom. Our customized luxury coaches are sanitized before the start of your tour and are maintained to very high standards. Physical distancing measures have been implemented on our customized luxury coaches.
  • : Hand sanitizer is freely available on board for you to use throughout the day.

Itinerary


Day 1: Welcome to Dublin

Join your Travel Director for a warm and friendly Welcome Dinner, with the opportunity to mingle and get to know each other over a meal with wine.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Clayton Hotel Burlington Road, Dublin.
Dinner with Wine
Dublin

Day 2: In Dublin’s Fair City Relaxed Start

Accompanied by a Local Expert, become acquainted with Dublin’s elegant squares during an orientation of the city. Discover Custom House, Christchurch Cathedral and St. Patrick's Cathedral. Enjoy entrance to the 9th century Book of Kells and a walk through the cobbled courtyards of Trinity College.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Clayton Hotel Burlington Road, Dublin.
Breakfast
Dublin

Day 3: A Journey from Dublin to Cork

In the morning, visit one of the country’s main racehorse breeding centers. Continue to the acclaimed 100 year old Japanese Gardens where you can ‘journey through life’ during a walk through the beautiful surrounds. Travel to the medieval city of Kilkenny to visit the majestic Kilkenny Castle. With a Local Expert, learn how the castle was built in 1195 after the Norman Conquest of Ireland and admire its beautifully restored Victorian era rooms. Continue through Cahir and see its imposing 13th-century castle, featured in the film 'Excalibur', on the way to Cork. On arrival, your Travel Director will show you around the compact university city, with its vibrant waterfront and grand Georgian parades.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
The Kingsley Hotel, Cork.
Breakfast
Dublin, Kildare, Kilkenny, Cork

Day 4: Across the Mountains to Killarney Relaxed Start

Travel to the ruined Blarney Castle. Will you hang upside down from the ramparts to kiss the stone and ensure a lifetime of eloquence? Travel across the majestic Derrynasaggart Mountains to the lively town of Killarney. For your Farm-to-Table dining experience, enjoy some Irish home cooking in the kitchens of chef John Sheehan. Join John and Freda, your hosts at the 19th Green Guesthouse, and savor the delicious flavors of fresh local cuisine on this MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience. Gather together at a Farm-to-Table dinner, using responsibly sourced ingredients from the local community, and gain personal insight into classic Irish recipes that are loved throughout the world.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Killarney Plaza Hotel and Spa.
Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
Cork, Blarney Castle, Killarney

Day 5: Ring of Kerry Experience Relaxed Start

Start your day with Insight Choice. Choose a memorable ride on a horse-drawn jaunting car with the local jarveys. Alternatively, join a gentle hike with a Local Expert along the lake shore and past the grounds of Ross Castle, admiring the incredible scenery of the National Park. While there aren't any mountains to climb, walkers should be fit, have good walking shoes or boots, sunscreen and rain gear. Explore around the magnificent Ring of Kerry. Here, mountains, valleys, lakes and sea blend into a landscape that is breathtaking beyond words. Journey past lush lakelands and around towering cliffs as you appreciate sweeping sea views. Continue through delightful villages like Sneem and cross the peat bogs of the Black Mountains to Moll’s Gap to admire Queen Victoria’s Ladies View. The rest of the afternoon is at leisure. Maybe take the opportunity to hire a bicycle and enjoy one of the many scenic trails around the lake or through the National Park.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Killarney Plaza Hotel and Spa.
Breakfast
Killarney, Ring of Kerry, Killarney

Day 6: Around the Dingle Peninsula Relaxed Start

Continue driving with views of wide skies, peaceful towns and coastal scenery of the Dingle Peninsula — the setting for the film Ryan’s Daughter. Drive to dramatic Slea Head at the peninsula’s far end, before reaching your hotel.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Falls Hotel & Spa, Ennistymon.
Breakfast
Killarney, Dingle Peninsula, Ennistymon

Day 7: The Cliffs of Moher and Galway Relaxed Start

Journey to the Visitor Center at the 700-foot Cliffs of Moher. Enjoy breathtaking views of the Clare Coast before a delightful drive through the strange, rocky landscape of the Burren to Galway Bay. On arrival, see the Lynch Memorial and Church of St. Nicholas, where Christopher Columbus reputedly prayed before his voyages to America. See the Spanish Arch and Eyre Square, dedicated to the late US President, John F. Kennedy.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Connemara Coast Hotel (Sea View Rooms), Galway.
Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
Ennistymon, Cliffs of Moher, Galway

Day 8: Free day Galway or Aran Islands Relaxed Start

Spend a day at leisure to relax and enjoy Galway. Perhaps join an Optional Experience to the Aran Islands? A genuine highlight of the Wild Atlantic Way. With their cliffs and spectacular coastal views, the islands are a true Irish experience.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Connemara Coast Hotel (Sea View Rooms), Galway.
Breakfast
Galway

Day 9: Derry Londonderry

Admire the Blue Stack Mountains of Donegal as you cross into Northern Ireland, bound for the ancient walled city of 'Derry.' What better way to experience sightseeing than with one of Northern Ireland's best storytellers, Ronan, as he takes you on a tour inside the city walls, still topped with cannons. Walk down Shipquay Street, with its elegant Georgian houses, to the Gothic Guildhall.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Maldron Hotel Derry, Londonderry.
Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
Galway, Londonderry

Day 10: Walk in the Giant’s Steps Relaxed Start

Journey to the iconic Giant's Causeway for a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience. Learn how the National Trust is enabling farming and biodiversity to work together, supporting both wildlife and quality food production. Next, prepare yourself for miles of breathtaking beauty as you travel along the road clinging to the Antrim Coast. Continue onto your hotel, overlooking Ballygally Bay. For those who are brave enough, perhaps check out The Ghost Room, in one of the castle’s turrets? In the evening, please join us for a finale Celebration Dinner, where old-fashioned hospitality is blended with good food and wine for an experience that delights the senses.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Ballygally Castle Hotel, Co. Antrim.
Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
Londonderry, Giant's Causeway, Ballygalley

Day 11: The Antrim Coast to Belfast Relaxed Start

Continue around the Antrim Coast, past the huge Norman castle at Carrickfergus, to arrive in the Northern Ireland capital of Belfast. Meet your Local Expert for a passionate city tour including views of the City Hall, Queen's University, the Parliament Building at Stormont and murals in different locations indicating political sentiments of local residents.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Titanic Hotel
Breakfast
Ballygalley, Antrim Coast, Belfast

Day 12: Depart Belfast

Departure transfers arrive at Belfast George Best City Airport and Belfast International Airport.


Duration
Accommodation
Meals
Locations Visited

1
Breakfast
Belfast

What's included


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