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Highlights of Dublin and Edinburgh

8 Days
Prices From:
US$ 2,212

FIRST-CLASS | TAILOR-MADE: Journey through two Celtic capitals on this week-long, tailor-made getaway. Through a mix of independent touring and small group adventures, you’ll visit famous distilleries and brew houses (and sample drinks!), explore Ireland’s renowned literary past, step inside legendary Edinburgh Castle, and so much more.

This 8-day, first-class trip combines city breaks in Dublin and Edinburgh, uncovering two of Europe’s most storied and enchanting capital cities in one short trip.

Begin in Dublin, where a two-day hop-on, hop-off bus pass lets you visit the attractions that most interest you in this historic city. It’s worth doing the full circuit with commentary, to hear some of Dublin’s stories, with insights into some of its greatest creators including James Joyce and Oscar Wilde. Two different routes take you through different parts of the city, so explore as you will. Included in your package are admissions to Kilmainham Gaol, the fabled Guinness Storehouse, and the Old Jameson Distillery.

Spend the following day with the literary stars of Dublin – and the drinks they enjoyed – on a literary pub crawl. Many visitors to the city make a beeline to Temple Bar, and sure, it’s a good time. But this tour takes you to many of the less known but no less loved spots, inviting you to understand what truly makes the Dublin ‘craic.’ Spend one last night in the city before your flight to Edinburgh.

In Scotland’s capital, you’ll have a fresh hop-on, hop-off bus ticket to take you between the main sights. Also included is a walking tour that uncovers some of the secrets of Royal Mile and Edinburgh Castle, allowing you to peek beyond what most tourists experience. No trip to Scotland of course would be complete without a wee drop. Discover what makes a true single malt whisky on a unique tour to Glengoyne. Enjoy the scenery of Loch Lomond en route.

Finally, forget every stereotype you’ve ever heard about Scottish food! Today’s Edinburgh is a culinary hotspot drawing influences from around the world, yet it also retains uniquely Scottish creations including Edinburgh raspberry gin, ‘tatties,’ and yes, haggis! Try them all as they were meant to be enjoyed on a walking food tour of the capital, with plenty of extra sightseeing time to pick up any highlights you’ve missed.


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8 Days
Prices From:
US$ 2,212

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Arrive to Dublin

Welcome to the cozy capital of Dublin! After arriving to the airport, grab your bags and a taxi to head to your hotel for the next few nights. Upon arriving, take the day to rest or take advantage of the Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour which allows you to experience all the history and culture of Dublin in one visit.

There are two routes on the tour, the Original route is 1 hour 45 minutes long with 26 stops conveniently located close to Dublin's most popular attractions. You can hop-off at any time to go visit attractions like Dublin Zoo, the Guinness Storehouse or The Book of Kells in Trinity College. Your guide will point out all the most famous landmarks and points of interest along the way, showing you where famous Dubliners like James Joyce, Oscar Wilde and Samuel Beckett (among others) lived and spent their time.

The second route is through Dublin's Docklands, and takes 45 minutes with 9 stops including The Jeanie Johnston Famine Memorial ship, The Bord Gais Energy Theatre and The National Convention Centre. You can also hop-off at Stop 7 to take a Dublin Bay Cruise. Buses start at 9am daily, and arrive at each stop every 10-15 minutes. You'll enjoy live commentary from our Failte Ireland trained drivers, all native Dubliners who will charm and entertain you.


Accommodation: Brooks Hotel Dublin

Duration3 Nights
Day 2

Kilmainham Gaol, Guiness Storehouse, and Jameson Distillery

Take yourself through two of the top tours in Dublin today, starting with Kilmainham Gaol, which opened in 1796 as the new County Gaol for Dublin. It closed its doors in 1924.Today the building symbolizes the tradition of militant and constitutional nationalism from the rebellion of 1798 to the Irish Civil War of 1922-23. Leaders of the rebellions of 1798, 1803, 1848,1867 and 1916 were detained and in some cases executed here. Many members of the Irish Republican movement during the Anglo-Irish War (1919-21) were also detained in Kilmainham Gaol, guarded by British troops. .

Following your adventure to Kilmainham Gaol, step into the Guiness Storehouse to explore a very fine exhibition dedicated to the Guinness story. Visitors will discover what goes into the making a pint of Guinness - the ingredients, the brewing process, the time, the craft and the passion. The exhibition shows how the brew has been marketed and how it is today sold in over 150 countries. Once the tour has finished, the guest is invited to the Gravity Bar to enjoy their pint of Guinness. Regular demonstrations on the art of pulling a pint of Guinness also take place in the Storehouse. 

End the day with a quick stop into the Old Jameson Distillery in Smithfield village, located in the heart of Dublin city centre. This old barley storehouse, once the centre of distilling in Dublin, was renovated in 1998 and converted into a museum where all the secrets of Irish whiskey's distillation will be revealed. An audio-visual show will introduce the history of this spirit and it is followed by a guided visit which will take visitors through the various stages of whiskey distilling from grain intake to malting, mashing, fermentation, distillation, maturation and finally bottling. The visit culminates in the Jameson bar with an opportunity for all to taste the signature Jameson drink. During the visit a number of volunteers are selected to take part in a tasting session to compare a Jameson whiskey with a Scottish whisky and an American bourbon. Participants will receive a diploma for their achievement. Other facilities include the Distillery Gift Shop, Restaurant and public bar.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Day 3

Dublin Literary Pub Crawl

Enjoy a fun afternoon or evening following the footsteps of some of Ireland's favourite literary figures through their best-loved pubs and hostelries. The entertainers will act out a few scenes from famous Irish plays in different pubs like the Duke, a pub with Joycean connections, Mulligans, the Palace Bar and McDaids. It combines street theatre with the 'craic' that makes Dublin pubs the liveliest in Europe and successfully avoids the tourist cliches that could ruin an evening of high art and superb entertainment.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration2 Hours
Day 4

Dublin to Edinburgh

Bid Ireland a fond farewell and head back to the airport via taxi to set off to your Scottish settlement for the next few nights. Arrive in Edinburgh and enjoy a private transfer to your hotel to check in before setting off into the city centre to explore. 

Hop onto one of Edinburgh's hour long 7-language tours introducing the best sights in the city. With your 24 hour ticket and you can enjoy the freedom to "hop on and hop off" until the same time the following day. The Edinburgh Tour will operate the following route: Waverley Bridge, Princes Street, Lothian Road, Bread Street, West Port, Grassmarket, Victoria Street, George IV Bridge, Chambers Street, South Bridge, High Street, Canongate, Horse Wynd, Queens Drive, Holyrood Gait, Our Dynamic Earth turning circle, Holyrood Gait, Queens Drive, Horse Wynd, Abbeyhill, Abbeymount, Regent Road, Waterloo Place, Princes Street, South St David Street, George Street, Hanover Street, Queen Street Gardens East, Heriot Row, Queen Street Gardens West, Frederick Street, George Street, Hanover Street, The Mound, Market Street, Waverley Bridge. Join the tour at Waverley Bridge, Lothian Road, Grassmarket, Royal Mile, Princes Street, or Princes Mall.


Accommodation: Ten Hill Place, Bw Premier Collection

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration4 Nights
Day 5

Secrets of Royal Mile and Edinburgh Castle - Walking Tour

The beautiful city is waiting for you. The best way to explore Edinburgh is to follow your feet. Where the buses can't take you, and the guide books don't show you is where the real stories can be found - the closes, wynds, courtyards and homes of Old Edinburgh. This walking tour will paint a vivid picture of the colourful past and people - see the secrets and tell the tales - the culture, crime and politics of Scotland's capital. This is an experience shared by Mercat historians.

Your experience of the medieval city is then completed with a visit to Edinburgh Castle. The Castle dominates Scotland's capital city from its great rock. Its story has helped shape the nation's story. Battles and sieges were fought over it, royalty lived and died within its walls, and countless generations have been and inspired by it. Visit the Castle and let your Mercat guide reveal its remarkable history.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration2 Hours
Day 6

Discover Malt Whisky

This tour is for lovers of Scotch single malt whisky and for those who would like to know more about the national drink. Discover the secrets behind the making of Scotland's national drink and in particular the best variety of all - single malt whisky. Your tour takes you west from Edinburgh past Stirling to visit the first distillery of the day at Glengoyne. Beautifully situated at the foot of the Campsie Hills, which provide the water supply for the whisky making, the tour here will introduce you to the simple but magical process of turning barley, water and yeast into whisky. From here you will take a scenic drive to the shores of Loch Lomond in the heart of Scotland's first National Park for a tasty pub lunch (own account) and the chance to sample some local beers. After lunch we recommend a short walk to the viewpoint overlooking the loch and all its islands before heading off towards the second distillery of the day at Deanston. This converted cotton mill on the banks of the River Teith has many interesting features and produces some unique flavours in its whisky. After a relaxed afternoon visit here you will return to Edinburgh with the stories and flavours of single malt whisky fresh in your mind.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration8 Hours
Day 7

A Walking Food Tour of Edinburgh - Small Group

The Edinburgh Old and New Town tour with a small group walking and tasting tour lasting around 3 to 3.5 hours. With the help of your guide and the places visited you will not only enjoy good food, drink and you will also learn about the rich history of Edinburgh.

As well as having starter, main course, cheese, charcuterie and dessert during the tour there will be the chance to taste Haggis neeps and tatties, enjoy Edinburgh raspberry Gin, Scottish beer and a Malt whisky tasting. All food tasted are served as tasting plates and are not full portions but it is still best to skip lunch before the tour and book a late or light dinner afterwards.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration3 Hours
Day 8

Depart Edinburgh

Give a final cheers to the Scottish capital before packing your bags and enjoying a private transfer to the airport. Check in for your flight and prepare for a journey back home!

Meal Plan Breakfast

Other Information




  • Private arrival and departure airport transfers

  • 3 nights in first-class accommodations in Dublin

  • 3 nights in first-class accommodations in Edinburgh
  • 2 day hop-on hop-off sighseeing tour pass in Dublin

  • Admission to Kilmainham Gaol
  • Admission to the Guinness Storehouse
  • Admission to the Old Jameson Distillery
  • Shared Dublin Literary Pub Crawl (max 20 guests)
  • 1 day hop-on hop-off sightseeing tour pass in Edinburgh
  • Shared walking tour of the “Secrets of Royal Mile and Edinburgh Castle” (max 30 guests)
  • Small group malt whisky tour with 1 tasting (max 16 guests)
  • Small group walking food tour of Edinburgh with 3 tastings and food samples (max 15 guests)
  • Breakfast daily (excluding day 1)


  • Travel insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • Meals and beverages not mentioned
  • Gratuities
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Visa fees if applicable


Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request - please inquire.

5 Dec 2023
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