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Duration: 12 days Visiting: Ireland
Welcome to the Emerald Isle. A storyteller's paradise, you'll explore the natural elements of this vibrant country, meeting some colourful characters along the way. From esteemed author and Dubliner Trevor White, to Killarney locals and the lively performers of Gaelic Roots - who will teach you a few moves - you're in for a trip rich in history, fascinating local insights and lots of laughter! Bring along a notepad and an appreciation for creativity, as we’re certain you'll be inspired in this rugged, fairytale land.
Welcome to Energetic Belfast.
Your complimentary, private transfer takes you to your local departure airport. Welcome to Belfast, the energetic, memorable capital of Northern Ireland. On arrival at Belfast International Airport, you will be welcomed by a representative before a private transfer to your luxurious home for the next three nights. Located in the heart of Belfast City Centre, you'll have time to get settled in your Executive Rooms before joining your Travelling Concierge and fellow travelling companions at 18:00 for an à la carte Welcome Dinner.
Highlights of Belfast.
Delve into Northern Ireland's inspiring and heartbreaking history in Belfast. Begin the day by heading to the Titanic Belfast Museum for a tour - the museum and monument are located on the site where the RMS Titanic was built from 1909-1912. Meet Hilda, a true Belfast local, having lived in the same house her entire life. During your panoramic tour, hear 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. The rest of the day is yours at leisure. Why not ask your Travelling Concierge for tips on exploring the area or their advice on the best restaurants for trying local delicacies?
Giant's Causeway and Londonderry.
No trip to Northern Ireland would be complete without a trip to Giant's Causeway, a rugged natural phenomenon that locals once believed was the work of giants. During a private tour with a local ranger, they will explain its ancient history and impressive geography. Next, you'll head to Londonderry with Ronan, a Local Expert and one of Northern Ireland's best storytellers. He'll share local tales and advise you on where best to head for lunch. The evening is yours at leisure, why not head back to your luxury hotel and make the most of its spa facilities?
Today you'll make your way to vibrant Dublin. A haven for literary buffs and Guinness lovers, Ireland's unique capital is a hedonist's dream. Take a city tour with your Travelling Concierge to see O'Connell Street, Custom House and Dublin Castle, before heading to the Little Museum of Dublin after hours. This new experience looks to tap into Ireland's dynamic history in an animated way. You'll explore the museum with its founder, respected author Trevor White, who'll also provide you with a signed copy of his critically acclaimed book, 'Alfie.' Enjoy a glass of prosecco with him as you learn more about the lives of Dubliners.
A Truly Irish Experience.
Head to the iconic Guinness Storehouse, where you'll get to explore the venue before it opens to the public, with a private opportunity to learn to pull the perfect pint. In the afternoon enjoy some free time in Dublin. Why not head to the National Museum of Ireland or the Dublin City Gallery? If more Guinness is on your mind, ask your Travelling Concierge for his local advice on the best pubs Dublin has to offer! End your day by relaxing in your luxury boutique hotel.
Glendalough to Kilkenny.
Enjoy a leisurely morning before heading to Glendalough, a glacial valley in County Wicklow, where you'll explore with a Local Expert. Head on to the medieval town of Kilkenny in southeast Ireland. Once here, you'll visit the local farmers market and enjoy a truffle tasting. From chocolate truffles to fudge, brownies and cakes, make sure you turn up on an empty stomach or stock up for the rest of your trip. End the day at Lyrath Estate, a beautiful, historic residence where you'll spend the night. End the day with a Michelin-starred dinner at Lady Helen and savour a dish prepared using locally-sourced ingredients.
Banter in Blarney.
Start your day in pretty Cashel, a small town in the south of Ireland, famous for its medieval buildings. See the spectacular Rock of Cashel, or St. Patrick's Rock, the traditional seat of the High Kings of Munster. Those looking to keep up with local Irish banter will enjoy a visit to Blarney Castle. Legend has it that kissing the Blarney Stone, a block of limestone built into the castle, gives you the gift of the gab. In the evening you'll enjoy dinner at the family-run Treyvaud's restaurant, which specialises in international cuisine. Later, try Irish dancing for yourself during a simple dance class with the Gaelic Roots, before settling in your VIP seats to watch the show.
Sweet Ring of Kerry.
Enjoy a morning at leisure in the comfort of your luxurious, five-star hotel, before travelling through the breathtakingly beautiful Killarney National Park, where sweeping mountains, lush lake lands and valleys await you as you drive along the iconic Ring of Kerry. Return to Killarney to explore the vibrant land on a scenic jaunting car ride before ending your day at J.M Reidy's Bar. The bar, which used to be a sweet shop, is a favourite among locals and still holds its old-world charm, with its sweet-jar-lined shelves and hand-written pricing. Here you will be hosted for an evening of entertainment with traditional, live music played by local musicians.
Wake up, head outdoors and take in the fresh, sea air, as you drive along the Dingle Peninsula. The area's craggy clifftops and rolling hills have inspired films such as 'Ryan's Daughter.' Head on to the village of Adare. Famous for its thatched-roof cottages and charm, this heritage town is a worthy detour for budding photographers looking to document their journey. Your travels continue to Limerick where your Travelling Concierge leads you on an orientation of the city. While here you'll see St. Mary's Cathedral, the oldest and most historic building in Limerick, and the city's stone, where the Treaty of Limerick was signed in 1691.
Regal County Mayo.
Travel through beautiful Country Clare to admire the breathtaking views of the 700-foot Cliffs of Moher. Continue to Galway, a harbour city that prides itself on its bustling streets and pubs, boutiques and quirky art galleries, where you'll explore with your Travelling Concierge. Journey on to the pretty village of Cong in County Mayo. Quaint in size but grand in character, this beautiful destination houses the famous Ashford Castle, where on arrival a lone piper escorts you over the drawbridge. This luxury hotel is where you'll stay the next two nights. Formerly home to the Guinness family, the hotel boasts sumptuous suites, antique furniture and unique historic features at every turn. The castle is set upon an idyllic 350-acre estate, making it a dreamy location for relaxing, romantic getaways. In the evening you will dine à la carte at the esteemed George V Dining Room, with delicacies including Ossetra Caviar, Skeaghanore Duck and Atlantic Tuna Tartare.
Majestic Ashford Castle.
Enjoy a relaxed start in your stately abode. During your leisure time why not head for a walk in its grounds and take in the plush exterior and crisp, fresh country air? Experience Ashford Castle Your Way with a choice between a unique falconry experience or scrumptious afternoon tea. Your final day culminates with a Celebration Dinner where you can share stories from the trip with your new-found friends, over dinner and wine.
It's time to say goodbye or 'slán' to your fellow travellers, as a transfer takes you to Shannon airport. On arrival at your home airport, your driver will greet and escort you to your waiting car for your private transfer home.
Belfast (Traditional) - Northern Ireland
Located in the heart of Belfast City Centre, the world-famous Europa Hotel is a contemporary venue that comes with plenty of charm. You'll stay in one of its elegantly decorated executive rooms. With the Ulster Museum, Grand Opera House, City Hall and Titanic Belfast located close by, you won't be short of things to do, while its onsite bistro, bar and luxury spa, will allow you to unwind after a day exploring.
Dublin (Boutique) - Ireland
Welcome to Dublin's leading five-star boutique hotel. Situated in an exclusive Victorian neighborhood, the Dylan Hotel, offers luxurious, contemporary comfort. From its extravagant entrance to its chic bedroom décor, you'll be placed just moments away from Dublin's top restaurants, shops and night life. The hotel also houses the award-winning Tavern Restaurant and Dylan Bar.
Kilkenny (Historic) - Ireland
A history lover's paradise, this dreamy hotel offers guests an elegant, old-world stay with all the modern amenities that can be expected from its five-star rating. With sweeping views of the Irish countryside and esteemed spa facilities, you'll not be disappointed with this decadent venue and its fairy-tale grounds.
Killarney (Traditional) - Ireland
Set on a luxurious, 64-acre estate, The Dunloe is a striking hotel set among the ruins of a 12th century castle. Its facilities offer guests the opportunity to horse ride, swim, fish, play tennis or simply relax in its spa. Food lovers can indulge in its restaurant, which offers locally sourced delicacies including Wild Atlantic fresh fish and Kerry lamb
Limerick (Boutique) - Ireland
Cong (Historic) - Ireland
Having undergone a magnificent $75m restoration, Ashford Castle offers timeless elegance, modern facilities and an unforgettable experience.
Cong (Castle) - Ireland
Formerly the home of the Guinness family, the magnificent Ashford Castle is now an award-winning hotel boasting sumptuous suites, antique furniture and unique historic features in a regal setting. Its recent multi-million-dollar renovation only adds to its allure. Set in a 350-acre estate in the countryside, it is the perfect destination for those looking for a romantic getaway or for guests who simply want to get back to nature. Expect warm Irish hospitality and charm aplenty.