Ireland is known for its iconic sites and phenomenal scenery. Experience the country as you avail of any number of days in Galway and Dublin (or other destinations of your choice) choosing between private guided tours and/or time for independent exploring. Sit back and relax as you enjoy a multi-day small group tour from Galway to Dublin and discover some of Ireland’s most treasured towns and dramatic coastlines. Beat the crowds and experience this charismatic country via the beautiful back roads, an ideal introduction to a diverse land dominated by wild, breathtaking vistas and a vivacious people prone to easy smiles. Meet local characters in ancient pubs, try Irish cuisine, drink in the pub featured in Ballykissangel, learn about the local whiskies and revel in the ambience of towns and villages away from the tourist crowds.
Small group tours typically depart every second Saturday (with a few exceptions) from May 11- September 14, 2013 and are guaranteed with a minimum of 4 participants. In general, the maximum group size is 16.
Consider adding additional days to your trip with the services of a private guide and/or driver to see more of the country - your time on either side of your small group tour can be customized to suit your needs (and private guided tours can be added throughout your small group experience as desired).
Meet your driver for an airport transfer in a private vehicle.
A welcome package with your vouchers, a city map, train tickets (if relevant) and any other touristic information that we deem you may find useful will be waiting for you upon your arrival at your first hotel on your trip.
Ariel House (4*Guesthouse) is an oasis of calm in the heart of Dublin 4, just a stone's throw from the Aviva stadium. In 2011, Bridgestone recommend Ariel House as one of the top 100 places to stay in Ireland. Also recommended in the Michelin Guide and Georgina Campbell's Ireland Guide 2011, the stately elegance and charming hospitality of Ariel House has firmly placed it as one of Dublin’s favourite places to stay. It is also commended by the Fodors and Frommers Guide.
Transfer to the small group meeting point using a local taxi. Please note that this is not included in trip price and is payable locally. The group is meeting at Stauntons on the Green, 83 St Stephens Green.
Meet up with your Guide and fellow travellers of your small group tour this morning. The rendezvous is at 08.30am at the Stauntons on the Green Hotel, 83 St Stephens Green, Dublin, Ireland.
Leave Dublin and travel to County Kerry. Your first stop is the Irish National Stud in County Kildare, home to Ireland’s finest thoroughbred horses and renowned Japanese Gardens. Then travel on to Adare, one of the prettiest villages in Ireland. Dating back to the 13th century and set in lush countryside and woodland, the village is particularly noted for its ornate thatched cottages, lovely stone buildings and medieval ruins.
In the afternoon you will make your way to the town of Killarney, known as the gateway to the Ring of Kerry. Killarney is situated in the midst of breath-taking landscapes, surrounded by lakes and mountains - it certainly won’t disappoint!
Tonight you will enjoy dinner together followed by a fun-filled evening of Irish entertainment in a local pub.
Killarney Riverside Hotel is located just a 10 minute walk outside Killarney town, overlooking the Flesk River and against the backdrop of MacGillycuddy Reeks. The hotel is one of the best known hotels in Killarney offering spacious and comfortable bedrooms in plush surroundings. Hotel facilities include the relaxing River Bar & Bistro and Bacchus Room with their award-winning Chef and their Beauty & Rejuvenation Suite.
Please note that your hotel may be the above or a hotel of similar standard and will be confirmed prior to departure.
Spend yor day exploring the lovely Ring of Kerry with its spectacular scenery, fine beaches and ancient heritage. You will make a short visit to Valentia Island, where dramatic cliffs contrast with lush and colourful vegetation. Here you will find the ‘Skellig Experience’, which tells of the Skellig monks and their lives in early Christian times. Next is Portmagee, a small, picturesque fishing village full of brightly painted houses. Once a haven for smugglers and pirates, this is the perfect place to stop and enjoy the scenery. Later you will see Staigue Fort, an intriguing ringfort built between 300 and 400 AD. At the head of the River Sneem estuary you will find the romantic village of Sneem, which is referred to as ‘the Knot in the Ring’. Brimming with traditional buildings, restaurants and craft shops, you will have time to explore Sneem before you return to Killarney.
This evening is free for you to enjoy at your leisure.
Your first visit of the day is to Muckross House and its delightful gardens. Queen Victoria once paid a visit here, and many of the rooms in this magnificent mansion have now been restored to their original Victorian splendour. Then travel to the attractive town of Kenmare with its colourful shop fronts, nestled at the mouth of Kenmare Bay, before calling in at the 200 year-old cottage of Molly Gallivan, a widow who brewed illicit whiskey and sold it in her illegal pub! Garnish Island is your next port of call, where you visit a garden of great beauty designed by Harold Peto. Arrive in the medieval town of Kinsale, one of the most picturesque and popular seaside resorts in the south-west, full of traditional bars, lovely buildings, narrow streets, and fascinating shops.
Tonight you will enjoy dinner together in one of the town's famous eateries.
The White House is a boutique Georgian guesthouse situated in the heart of Kinsale. At the White House you will find a warm and friendly ambiance, traditional surroundings with modern facilities. An array of good food is always available in their Bar / Bistro. They have a wide variety of entertainment most evenings in the White House.
Enjoy a walking tour of Kinsale accompanied by a local guide. Learn about its history and maritime traditions and admire the 800 year old Church of Saint Multose and the unique star-shaped Charles Fort.
Make your way to Cork, for a panoramic tour of the city before you head to the coastal town of Cobh, where you find Midleton Distillery. Learn about the production of whiskey and taste what is considered by many to be the finest whiskey in Ireland! Then travel to Kilkenny, rich in medieval heritage and perhaps most famous for its imposing castle. This evening explore the town's many attractions and dine at your leisure.
Welcome to the Kilkenny River Court Hotel, a place of warmth, friendliness and sheer contentment. Nestled in a private courtyard, this four-star Kilkenny city hotel rests serenely on the banks of the River Nore. Secluded from the bustling and winding city streets, the Kilkenny River Court Hotel is overlooked by Kilkenny’s majestic 12th century castle. Kilkenny City itself offers prime shopping and dining experiences throughout its winding and cobbled street ways, all within ten minutes of the Kilkenny River Court Hotel.
Your route back to the capital takes you through the beautiful and dramatic Wicklow Mountains, travelling through heather-clad hills, lush vegetation, rocky foothills and delightful glens. On your way you will stop at the village of Avoca, perhaps most famous for the ever-popular TV series Ballykissangel. Here call in at Fitzgerald’s pub, which featured largely in the programme. You will have time for a spot of shopping at the Avoca Woollen Mills before you travel back to Dublin.
Stauntons on the Green, the most exclusive Georgian Guesthouse in Dublin is delightfully set in an unrivalled position overlooking the picturesque St Stephens Green in Dublin City Centre – one of the best known and most beautiful parts of Dublin. Unique to Stauntons on the Green - their garden leads onto the Victorian Iveagh Gardens with its rustic grotto, fountains and wide expanse of leisurely walks and greens. The building embodies Georgian elegance and style, and offers a most inviting atmosphere.
After a leisurely start this morning, enjoy a panoramic driving tour of the city where you will see all the main sites of interest. Tour the Kilmainham Gaol and stop at the Guinness Storehouse.
The programme will provide some great ideas as to how you may want to spend your free afternoon. Perhaps visit the world-famous Book of Kells, a richly-decorated copy of the four gospels, or delve into the literary heritage of the city, whose famous sons include James Joyce and George Bernard Shaw.
Tonight you head out to Dublin’s oldest pub, the ‘Brazen Head’, for dinner and an evening of fabulous Irish music and storytelling.
Your small group tour concludes this morning after breakfast in Dublin at the Stauntons on the Green Hotel. You may wish to further explore this vibrant city at your leisure.
Your guide will meet you at your hotel and accompany you on a private walking tour of the City of Dublin. Please let your guide know if there are any sights of particular interest to you. (No entrance fees included). In order to give as much flexibility as possible, we have not included entrance fees and these can be paid in person on site.
Spend the afternoon as you wish, perhaps visiting one of the many attractions such as the Guinness Storehouse or the Jameson distillery.
Located in the heart of the St James’s Gate Brewery, the Guinness Storehouse is Ireland’s No. 1 Dublin Tourist attraction. The state of the art interactive museum and audio visual exhibition takes one on an incredible journey through the history and making of Guinness and includes some very entertaining advertisements that were used throughout the past fifty years. Finish off your discovery by sipping on a complimentary pint from the birds eye viewing room located at the top of the building and take in the panoramic views of the city and coast.
The Jameson Distillery provides a fascinating visit of its factory and introduces the visitor to the various stages that go in to the process of premium whiskey. At the end of the tour you can sit down and do a tutored vertical tasting of various whiskeys from around the world and you'll be sure to appreciate Jameson's premium whiskey all the more!
Other places of interest in the city include St Patrick's Cathedral, Christchurch and Trinity College incorporating The Book of Kells. You may also enjoy Irelands historic and cultural resourses at the world class museums on Kildare Street. There is also excellent shopping on Grafton Street and nearby Nassau Street as well as Dublin's European Style Boulevard of O'Connell Street.
Enjoy an evening of hearty Irish fare and traditional Irish music in the16th century Abbey Tavern - a genuine tavern located in the lovely fishing village of Howth, with blazing turf fires, original stone walls flagged floors and gas lights. The "Traditional Irish Evening" in The Barn, features the Abbey Tavern singers and musicians with a live performance of music, song and Irish dancing. The Restaurant has a warm and unique atmosphere, and offers a tasty menu selection with local specialties from the Harbor each evening. The Pub is one of the oldest in Dublin and enjoys a genuine old world atmosphere. A car and driver service can be arranged if desired - please contact your Sales Advisor if you would be interested in adding this service for your evening. In order to give as much flexibility as possible, we have not included entrance fees and these can be paid in person on site.
Citizens of other countries may require a visa. Please ask your Sales Advisor. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the Embassy of Ireland for the most up to date visa information.
Stay in the know: Subscribe to our newsletter to have our hand-picked trips & specials delivered to you!
Please enter a destination