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The Emerald Isle: Small Group Tour Dublin to Dublin

Duration
14 Days
Prices From:
US$ 3,930

An in-depth circular Back Roads tour itinerary of Ireland’s lush green landscapes and coastal magnificence combined with the country’s colourful history and culture make this a must for anyone wishing to enjoy the very essence of the Emerald Isle.


Join one of our unique small group touring experiences (maximum 18 participants) that includes specially selected accommodations, transportation in purpose built Mercedes Benz Sprinters, sightseeing, special culinary experiences and a knowledgeable Tour Leader. 

Starting in Dublin, head north to Belfast stopping along the way at the Newgrange Tomb, unbelievably older than Stonehenge and the Pyramids plus the site of the famous and bloody 17th Century Battle of the Boyne and the Hill of Tara, an ancient prehistoric site. Stay overnight in Belfast.

The next day visit “The Troubles” districts on the famous Black Cab tour and then carry on to the Titanic Museum, the largest Titanic Exhibition in the world. This is followed by journeying to the Giants Causeway, a mystic peninsula of stones allegedly reaching under the sea to Scotland. Continue to Londonderry for overnight.

The following morning, enjoy a walk on the ancient city walls after which travel to Grianan of Aleach, an Iron Age fort with amazing views over the nearby lochs. Drive along the coast to the Inishowen Peninsula in Donegal then head to the Isle of Doagh Visitors Centre for a presentation on the Irish Famine (1845/1852). Return to Londonderry.

Start today with a visit to the Ulster-American Folk Park to learn about the mass immigration of the Irish to the New World. Leave Londonderry and travel to Belleek, home to Ireland’s oldest pottery then journey through WB Yeats’ country stopping at associated sites along the way. Overnight in Sligo.

Continue the following morning to the picturesque town of Westport. Then enjoy a visit to the Connemara Heritage Centre to learn about the history and heritage of the region. Arrive in Galway for a 2 nights stay with a walking tour of the city before overnighting.

The next day is completely free to explore Galway on your own.

Continue south visiting the prehistoric burial site of the Poulnabrone Portal Tomb from the Neolithic era followed by the breathtaking Cliffs of Moher which rise to a height of 120 metres/390 feet above the Atlantic Ocean. Arrive at the Dingle Peninsula, the furthest westerly point in the country, for a 2 night stay.

The following morning, commence a very enjoyable tour of the peninsula with its wild beauty and quaint villages.

Leave the Dingle Peninsula to arrive in County Kerry where you will visit Macgillicuddy’s Reeks, the highest point in Ireland and also appreciate the beauty of the Killarney Lakes. Stop at the delightful town of Kenmare before travelling through the mountains via the rugged Healy Pass arriving at Bantry House on Bantry Bay for a visit. Continue to Blarney, near Cork, for 2 nights’ accommodation.

The charming port of Kinsale is next with its harbour filled with bobbing sailboats. Follow this with a visit to the Jameson Distillery for a tour and whiskey tasting.

Leave Blarney heading for Tipperary and the ruins of the Rock of Cashel, the traditional seat of the Kings of Munster dating back to the 12th and 13th Centuries. Arrive eventually at the well preserved and charming city of Kilkenny for overnight.

On your last day, return to Dublin with visits to Glendalough, site of early monastic settlements and Powerscourt Estate, a manor house with extensive cultivated gardens.


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Duration
14 Days
Prices From:
US$ 3,930

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Taxi Dublin Airport to Dublin City Hotel

Duration30 Minutes

The Alex Hotel

The Dublin City centre O'Callaghan Alex Hotel was the third hotel in the O'Callaghan Hotels group on the corner of Merrion Square. This hotel welcomes you into its spacious lobby where you will be greeted with a warm welcome. Located off one of the corners of Merrion Square, O'Callaghan Alexander Hotel is close to the Georgian Squares where business and culture are intertwined and is only a few minutes walk from Trinity College and the popular shopping street, Grafton Street.

Meal Plan Full Breakfast
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

The Alex Hotel

More Info

Location View map
  • starstarstarstar

    The Alex Hotel



    The Dublin City centre O'Callaghan Alex Hotel was the third hotel in the O'Callaghan Hotels group on the corner of Merrion Square. This hotel welcomes you into its spacious lobby where you will be greeted with a warm welcome. Located off one of the corners ...

    The Dublin City centre O'Callaghan Alex Hotel was the third hotel in the O'Callaghan Hotels group on the corner of Merrion Square. This hotel welcomes you into its spacious lobby where you will be greeted with a warm welcome. Located off one of the corners of Merrion Square, O'Callaghan Alexander Hotel is close to the Georgian Squares where business and culture are intertwined and is only a few minutes walk from Trinity College and the popular shopping street, Grafton Street.

    Facilities

    • Bar
    • Fitness Centre
    • Meeting Rooms Available
    • Parking Nearby ($)
    • Restaurant
    • WiFi

    More Details

    Preferred Hotel
Day 2

Dublin - Belfast

Warm, welcoming and unmistakably charismatic, Dublin is where we'll meet the group and begin our adventure. But we won't stick around for long - the fascinating Battle of the Boyne Visitor Centre is calling. After a history-filled day (a taste of what's to come), we'll move on to Belfast - where we'll get to know each other a little better over a welcome dinner.

Meal Plan Dinner
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Malone Lodge Hotel

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    Malone Lodge Hotel



    Owned by the Macklin family for over 20 years and having won numerous awards including Belfast Hotel of the Year, the hotel was totally refurbished in 2013, and the Macklin family have developed and invested in the hotel to make it one of the largest ...

    Owned by the Macklin family for over 20 years and having won numerous awards including Belfast Hotel of the Year, the hotel was totally refurbished in 2013, and the Macklin family have developed and invested in the hotel to make it one of the largest most charming independently owned hotels in Belfast. Known as "Belfast's hidden gem" the relaxed luxury of the hotel and friendly team create a wonderful warm atmosphere. The hotel is located in the popular Queens quarter of South Belfast with fantastic transport links to the all motorways, rail and bus links. Lisburn Road which is renowned for its unique shopping outlets is only a 5 minute walk from the hotel.

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Day 3

Belfast - Londonderry

You don't have to delve deep into Northern Ireland's past to see its influences on contemporary culture - and this morning's Black Cab tour of Belfast's street art and political murals will serve as proof. We'll make another stop at the Titanic Museum, where we'll discover the personal stories surrounding the infamous ship's fateful journey, before continuing to Ballyscullion Park (a private country house) for lunch.

Then: we'll take some time to explore Ireland's natural geological wonder, the Giant's Causeway, before arriving at our accommodation in Londonderry.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Beech Hill Country House

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    Beech Hill Country House



    Beech Hill Country House Hotel, gloriously set in 32-acres of woodland, lakes and tranquil well-tended gardens, is famed for its warm welcomes and fine food. Despite its rural location this imposing Georgian building stands just 2-miles from the walled centre of Londonderry. Also within easy ...

    Beech Hill Country House Hotel, gloriously set in 32-acres of woodland, lakes and tranquil well-tended gardens, is famed for its warm welcomes and fine food. Despite its rural location this imposing Georgian building stands just 2-miles from the walled centre of Londonderry. Also within easy reach are the Giants Causeway, the wild and dramatic scenery of County Donegal and the gentle, wonderfully scenic Sperrin Mountains. Beech Hill was a base for the US Marines in World War II. A memorial to the Marine Corps stands in the garden and every year Marines come from America and Europe to keep alive their links with the hotel and the city.

    Facilities

    • Bar
    • Conference Facilities
    • Fireplace
    • Laundry facilities
    • Restaurant

    More Details

    Preferred Hotel
Day 4

Londonderry - North Irish Coast - Londonderry

After a morning spent strolling along Londonderry's old city walls, we'll board the mini-coach and head to the North Irish Coast for the day. At the Isle of Doagh, we'll visit the Famine Village and Visitor Centre - where we'll gain an insight into Irish life during the time of the Great Famine.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Day 5

Londonderry - Roscommon

More fascinating history is on the cards today! After breakfast, we'll kick things off with a visit to the Ulster American Folk Park, where we'll learn why two million Irish people sailed away to start a life in the New World. This afternoon, we'll visit the Belleek Pottery Centre (the home of Ireland's oldest working fine china pottery) before moving on to Roscommon, where we'll regroup for dinner.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Dinner
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Kilronan Castle

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    Kilronan Castle



    One of Ireland's most luxurious Castle Hotels, Kilronan Castle is the ancestral home of the Tenison family and the legendary Colonel King Tenison. It is one of a few Irish castle estates that can trace its history back to royal families. The castle is surrounded ...

    One of Ireland's most luxurious Castle Hotels, Kilronan Castle is the ancestral home of the Tenison family and the legendary Colonel King Tenison. It is one of a few Irish castle estates that can trace its history back to royal families. The castle is surrounded by over forty acres of breathtaking Irish scenery, lush green pastures, ancient forests and historical points of interest. Approached by a meandering drive that passes acres of magnificent lawns, Kilronan Castle overlooks a glistening lake which commands the panoramic beauty of the surrounds. Our world class Spa and Leisure Centre is a treat not to be missed.

    Facilities

    • 24 Hour Reception
    • Concierge
    • Free Newspapers in Lobby
    • Free WiFi
    • Health Club
    • Library
    • Lift/elevator
    • Luggage Storage
    • Multi-lingual Staff
    • Restaurant
    • Safety Deposit Box
    • Sauna
    • Spa Services
    • Steam Room

    More Details

    Preferred Hotel
Day 6

Roscommon - Connemara - Galway

The morning will see us taking a wander around the award-winning Connemara Heritage and History Centre - where we'll learn a thing or two about the area's culture and traditions from a local family. After visiting the homestead of Dan O'Hara (he of the famous ballad), we'll hit the road to the harbour city of Galway for an evening of leisure.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Park House Hotel

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    Park House Hotel



    Since 1975 the Park House Hotel has been welcoming guests. The hotel, situated in the heart of Galway City centre, has earned a reputation for the excellence of it's food and the quality of it's service. Guests need only step outside the door to explore ...

    Since 1975 the Park House Hotel has been welcoming guests. The hotel, situated in the heart of Galway City centre, has earned a reputation for the excellence of it's food and the quality of it's service. Guests need only step outside the door to explore Galway City and it's wonderful surroundings. You will find a wealth of attractions from shopping, restaurants and bars, to museums, theatre, historical buildings, street entertainment and lots more. The Aran Islands, Connemara, the Burren and Cliffs of Moher are all easily reached for a day trip. There is always something happening in Galway with the many various festivals and events taking place throughout the year.

    Facilities

    • 24 Hour Reception
    • Bar
    • Laundry facilities
    • Restaurant

    More Details

Day 7

Galway

Today, we'll see the likes of the Spanish Arch, Galway Cathedral and Eyre Square on a walking tour of the city. Then: the afternoon will be yours to spend exploring brightly coloured pubs, tasting local seafood and listening to the ever-present throng of tuneful street performers. Buzzing, bohemian and utterly charismatic, you're sure to fall for Galway's many charms!

Meal Plan Breakfast
Day 8

Galway - The Burren - Dingle Peninsula

Out of Galway and onwards to the karst landscapes of the Burren - where the exceptionally well-preserved Caherconnell Stone Fort awaits us. Here, we may be fortunate enough to witness the local sheepdog trials in action. Before we reach our accommodation in the Dingle Peninsula, we'll round off the day with a visit to the magnificent Cliffs of Moher - an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Dinner
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Dingle Benners Hotel

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    Dingle Benners Hotel



    Old world charm and elegance will captivate you from the moment you arrive. Dingle Benners Hotel is one of the most luxurous Dingle hotels, offering you the best of both worlds - traditional Irish warmth and comfort coupled with the best of modern facilities. Situated ...

    Old world charm and elegance will captivate you from the moment you arrive. Dingle Benners Hotel is one of the most luxurous Dingle hotels, offering you the best of both worlds - traditional Irish warmth and comfort coupled with the best of modern facilities. Situated in the centre of Dingle Town, in the heart of West Kerry, Dingle Benners is regarded as one of the best located Kerry hotels, an ideal base for you to tour the magnificent Dingle Peninsula and surrounding areas.

    Facilities

    • 24 Hour Reception
    • Babysitting Services
    • Concierge
    • Fireplace
    • Laundry Service
    • Lounge Bar
    • Multi-lingual Staff
    • Newsstand
    • Restaurant

    More Details

Day 9

Dingle Peninsula

Today will begin at one of the Dingle Peninsula's most famous landmarks: the Gallarus Oratory, a unique stone chapel that resembles an upturned boat.

After that, there's one more stop in store - the fascinating Blasket Centre, which celebrates the history of the beautiful Great Blasket Island - before we return to Dingle for the evening, where we'll have plenty of free time to explore the quaint fishing port.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Day 10

Dingle Peninsula - Kenmare - Cork

Peaks and lakes are on the menu today! First, we'll take in the views across the stunning Lakes of Killarney as we travel to pretty Kenmare, the 'head of the sea'. Then, we have an appointment to keep with a true Irish icon: Blarney Castle. Legend has it that you'll be blessed with the 'gift of the gab' if you kiss the famous Blarney Stone - a block of limestone built into the castle's battlements.

Tonight, we'll make the most of our new-found eloquence over dinner in Cork.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Dinner
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

The Kingsley Hotel

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    The Kingsley Hotel



    Overlooking the historic The River Lee, The Kingsley offers 131 bedrooms perfectly designed for your comfort. Whether you are visiting for business or pleasure, our Cork City hotel ensures a sense of tranquility. Choose the room that best suits you, ranging from our Classic or ...

    Overlooking the historic The River Lee, The Kingsley offers 131 bedrooms perfectly designed for your comfort. Whether you are visiting for business or pleasure, our Cork City hotel ensures a sense of tranquility. Choose the room that best suits you, ranging from our Classic or Deluxe King Room Suites, three luxurious Junior Suites or a lavish two-story Penthouse.

    Facilities

    • Connecting Rooms Available
    • Dining facilities
    • Health and Fitness Club
    • Wedding Facilities

    More Details

Day 11

Cork - Kinsale - Cork

After boarding the mini-coach in Cork, the port and fishing town of Kinsale will be our first stop of the day. Here, we'll get the lay of the land on a walking tour before turning our attention to Charles Fort, one of Europe's best-preserved star-shaped forts.

We'll return to Cork this evening - but before that, there will be plenty of time to soak up Kinsale's laid-back atmosphere in the local pubs and restaurants.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Day 12

Cork - Tipperary - Kilkenny

As we approach the final few chapters of the tour, we'll find ourselves travelling through rural Tipperary on the way to Kilkenny - Ireland's 'most perfect' medieval city. A walking tour will help us to orient ourselves before we come together for our last hurrah: a delicious farewell dinner (including an unforgettable hurling experience). We'll even be lucky enough to spend the evening with a local musician, who'll ring in the last night of the trip with some traditional Irish anthems. What an adventure it's been!

Meal Plan Breakfast and Dinner
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Kilkenny River Court Hotel

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    Kilkenny River Court Hotel



    The Award winning Kilkenny River Court Hotel, superbly located on the bank of the River Nore in the heart of the medieval city of Kilkenny. Nestled in a private courtyard, secluded from the bustling and winding city streets, the hotel is overlooked by Kilkenny's majestic ...

    The Award winning Kilkenny River Court Hotel, superbly located on the bank of the River Nore in the heart of the medieval city of Kilkenny. Nestled in a private courtyard, secluded from the bustling and winding city streets, the hotel is overlooked by Kilkenny's majestic 12th century castle.

    On arrival, you will feel a sense of belonging as they welcome you to Kilkenny's finest four star hotel. This property is the ideal setting for corporate events, weddings or special family events. Their prime city centre location also includes ample secure on site parking facilities. Dining outlets at the hotel include the AA Rosette winning Riverside Restaurant and Terrace Kitchen at the Riverview Bar complete with its own 'al fresco' terrace dining experience.

    Facilities

    • Bar
    • Events and Banquets Facilities
    • Free WiFi
    • Laundry Service
    • Meeting Rooms
    • Restaurant
    • Wedding venue

    More Details

Day 13

Kilkenny - Avoca - Dublin

After breakfast, we'll have two more stops to make before we say goodbye: the imposing Huntington Castle, where we'll be treated to a guided tour, and the famous copper mining town of Avoca.

After that, we'll return to cosmopolitan Dublin - where our tour will come to a close.

Meal Plan Breakfast

The Alex Hotel

The Dublin City centre O'Callaghan Alex Hotel was the third hotel in the O'Callaghan Hotels group on the corner of Merrion Square. This hotel welcomes you into its spacious lobby where you will be greeted with a warm welcome. Located off one of the corners of Merrion Square, O'Callaghan Alexander Hotel is close to the Georgian Squares where business and culture are intertwined and is only a few minutes walk from Trinity College and the popular shopping street, Grafton Street.

Meal Plan Full Breakfast
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

The Alex Hotel

More Info

Location View map
  • starstarstarstar

    The Alex Hotel



    The Dublin City centre O'Callaghan Alex Hotel was the third hotel in the O'Callaghan Hotels group on the corner of Merrion Square. This hotel welcomes you into its spacious lobby where you will be greeted with a warm welcome. Located off one of the corners ...

    The Dublin City centre O'Callaghan Alex Hotel was the third hotel in the O'Callaghan Hotels group on the corner of Merrion Square. This hotel welcomes you into its spacious lobby where you will be greeted with a warm welcome. Located off one of the corners of Merrion Square, O'Callaghan Alexander Hotel is close to the Georgian Squares where business and culture are intertwined and is only a few minutes walk from Trinity College and the popular shopping street, Grafton Street.

    Facilities

    • Bar
    • Fitness Centre
    • Meeting Rooms Available
    • Parking Nearby ($)
    • Restaurant
    • WiFi

    More Details

    Preferred Hotel
Day 14

Taxi Dublin City Hotel to Dublin Airport

Duration30 Minutes

Other Information

DEPARTURES:

2019: Jul 28, 31; Aug 4, 7, 11, 14, 17, 21, 25, 28; Sep 1, 4,8, 11, 15, 18, 22, 25, 29;
Oct 2, 5, 6
2020: Mar 7, 14, 21, 29; Apr 13, 15, 18, 20, 25; May 4, 6, 8, 10, 16, 23, 25, 27, 30;
Jun 1, 3, 6, 8, 10, 13, 15, 17, 20, 24, 27; Jul 1, 4, 6, 18, 20, 28;
Aug 1, 3, 5, 8, 10, 12, 15, 17, 22, 24, 31; Sep 2, 5, 7, 9, 12, 16, 19, 23, 26, 30;
Oct 3, 5, 7, 10  

PRICE INCLUDES:

  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • 13 nights’ accommodation
  • Driver/tour leader
  • Mini-coach transportation
  • Full Irish breakfast daily
  • 5 evening meals
  • Black Cab Experience
  • Kinsale Heritage Walk
  • Irish whiskey tour and tasting
  • Included Entrance Fees: Newgrange, Battle of the Boyne site, Hill of Tara, Titanic Museum, Doagh Famine Village, Ulster- American Folk Park, Parkes Castle, Connemara Heritage Centre, Blasket Islands Centre, Gallarus Oratory, Bantry House, Rock of Cashel, Glendalough & Powerscourt Estate.

PRICE EXCLUDES:

  • Travel insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Gratuities.
  • Meals and beverages not specifically indicated
  • Pre and post tour accommodation.
  • Arrival and departure transfers

OTHER INFORMATION:

Mobility: The tour involves walking and requires guests to board and disembark our vehicles several times a day making this tour unsuitable for those with reduced mobility.

The Back-Roads Difference

  • Learn about Belfast’s turbulent past and see the political murals on a Famous Black Cab tour.
  • Drive along the back roads of Ireland through stunning natural scenery, including the lunar-like landscape of the Burren.
  • Visit the award-winning Connemara Heritage CentreMingle with the locals, enjoy traditional Irish evenings, try local whiskies and perhaps a glass or two of Guinness.

TERMS & CONDITIONS:

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 enquire.

DP DUBTPK14DIE
5 Oct 2020
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