Sample itinerary

12 Day luxury tour of Ireland

Here follows a suggested itinerary, we can start and finish at any airport and we will customize a very special tour for you to suit you every need. This itinerary includes 12 days of sightseeing with the final 12th day reserved for airport transfer prior to departure.

Day 1

Arrival and Transfer to Hotel

 

Shannon is the easiest Airport in the world to negotiate and certainly the friendliest Irish airport we deal with. When you disembark you will be brought to the main airport terminal where you will first be met with passport control.

You will then proceed to collect your luggage before walking through customs. After that, you come through the arrivals door where your private chauffeur driver guide will be waiting.

You will know our guy straight away, he will the guy with the biggest and most welcoming smile!

We arrive at Shannon Airport nice & early, typically 6am/7am. You could then take a short drive to one of Ireland’s finest castle hotels, Dromoland Castle for breakfast. With an extraordinary history stretching back to the 5th Century, Dromoland Castle was originally the ancestral home of one of the few families of Gaelic Royalty; direct descendants of Brian Boru, the High King of Ireland.

The breakfast here is truly amazing and believe me when I say it is fit for royalty. This is, of course, optional. You pay on-site on the day approximately €25.00 – €30.00 per person but so worth it and a fantastic way to start your vacation. Alternatively, we could drive to your chosen hotel and check in if possible. Generally, check-in is not until 2PM but we will inform them of your arrival and we will be given priority should a room become available earlier.

Overnight in Dromoland/Adare/Limerick, choice of hotel:

  • 5* Dromoland Castle, Adare Manor, The Savoy Hotel Limerick
  • 4* The Strand Hotel Limerick, The Clarion Hotel & Suites Limerick, Dunraven Arms, Adare

Bunratty Castle & Folkpark

Later we will drive to Bunratty Castle & Folk Park and the Blarney Woollen Mills Bunratty store. Bunratty is one of Ireland’s most visited attractions, where you can experience the Irish way of life centuries ago.

Built in 1425, Bunratty Castle was restored in 1954 to its former medieval glory with the addition of 15th and 16th-century furnishings, arts and crafts. The Bunratty Folk Park experience captures the sights, sounds, tastes, and scents of this enchanting place as you stroll from house to house or around the charming village street complete with school, post office, doctors house, hardware shop, printers and of course McNamara’s pub! You will have time to explore the Woollen Mills for all authentic Irish Produce such as Irish linens, lace, and crystal. All at Duty-Free prices too!

The first day will take about 5/6 hours and, from our experience, the jet lag will most definitely be setting in, and so we will return to your accommodation without delay. Then you can relax and explore your hotel and its surrounding area, and perhaps take a needed nap to keep you fit for the days ahead.

Day 2

Cliffs of Moher and The Burren

We depart our hotel after breakfast for the wonderful Cliffs of Moher & the Burren. Rising from the sea to a height of 214 meters and running relentlessly for 5 miles, generations of visitors have not failed to be impressed by what many regard as their 8th wonder of the world.

The Cliffs are just beautiful and there are great walks here. As you and your snap happy camera take in the magnificent view, you can feel the full force of the Atlantic Ocean from the floor up. Some souvenir and craft shopping can be done here also.

When we are finished at the Cliffs we then travel along the famous Galway Bay into the typical Irish town of Ballyvaughan. Here we can have some nice lunch along the way.

Then it’s on to the nearby Burren Region, a limestone plateau with its treasure trove of geological and archaeological interests.

The Burren is home to many of Ireland’s most famous prehistoric monuments. After lunch we can visit Birds of Prey at Aillwee Caves, a personal favourite of mine, where you will see Falcons, Eagles, Owls, & Hawks all hunting for their dinner!

This is a great show that lasts 50 minutes. Next up is the Dolmen Graves which go back to 3600 B.C. These Neolithic graves are very typical in County Clare. We will then drive through the rugged Clare countryside and back to your accommodation.

Overnight in Dromoland/Adare/Limerick, in choice of Hotels:

  • 5* Dromoland Castle, Adare Manor, The Savoy Hotel
  • Overnight in Dromoland/Adare/Limerick, in choice of Hotels:

Day 3

Killarney

We depart our Hotel today for our 3 day stay in the Kingdom of Ireland, Killarney, our highlights for today include:

  • Ladies’ View– so named after Queen Victoria’s ladies-in-waiting during the Queen’s visit to Killarney in 1861. The views toward the McGillycuddy Reeks and the Purple Mountain Range are truly magnificent.
  • Torc Falls– we follow a scenic path to the top of the 18 meter high waterfall for panoramic views.
  • Muckross Houseand Gardens – this magnificent Victorian mansion forms the centre-piece of Killarney National Park.
  • Ross Castle– this 15th century stronghold was the original home of the O’Donoghue Ross Chieftans.

We then take a 15 min drive to the Kissane sheep farm, where we will see some sheep shearing and some sheep dog trials, this is a great stop, sure to put a smile on your face.

We will then head back to Killarney and check into your choice of some of the most beautiful Hotels in Ireland. Your Personal Chauffeur Driver guide will be with you every step of the way. He will be more than happy to recommend restaurants and bars for the evening and make any reservations for you that you may need.

Overnight in Killarney, choice of hotel:

  • 5* The Killarney Park, The Europe Hotel, The Aghadoe Heights.
  • 4* The Killarney Plaza, The Great Southern Hotel, The Killarney Royal

Day 4

The Gap of Dunloe

Today is a favourite of ours, The Gap of Dunloe, it gets us up out of bed earlier than usual! We begin by taking a short drive to Kate Kearney’s Cottage where we jump twice – once on an Irish Jaunting Car ( Horse & Carriage), and secondly, we jump back in time and things get pretty authentic here folks.

We tour through the beautiful mountains, mystical lakes & valleys which abound County Kerry, with majestic scenery everywhere we look. You will be able to get out of the carriage and walk through this pure and unspoiled beautiful terrain.

Your camera will be snapping crazy so make sure it’s fully charged! When we get to the top of the mountain you can have some light lunch at Lord Mount Brandon’s Cottage.

After this magnificent lunch you will come down the other side of the mountain in an open Fisherman’s boat down through the 3 Lakes of Killarney to Ross Castle.

Keep your eyes peeled, on the way down you might see some eagles nests in the mountains and see some salmon swimming beside you in the lake. This tour will live with you for a long time to come, it is truly spectacular. Then after that, you will have some time to explore the Town of Killarney and have a nice stroll through her pedestrianised streets before dinner.

Overnight in Killarney, choice of hotel:

  • 5* The Killarney Park, The Europe Hotel, The Aghadoe Heights.
  • 4* The Killarney Plaza, The Great Southern Hotel, The Killarney Royal

Day 5

The Dingle Peninsula & Slea Head

Today we tour to the most awesome place on earth The Dingle Peninsula & Slea Head where we will see some of the most beautiful and unrivalled scenery in Ireland.

Our tour will take us to the beautiful town of Dingle via the Conor Pass Mountains. The views here of Dingle town are spectacular and you can even see Tralee on the other side. You will have plenty of time to explore the lovely fishing village that Dingle is and take some lovely photos.

You can also take a boat journey to see Fungi the dolphin who has been a resident in Dingle Harbour for over 20 years (optional and paid for locally).

Onwards to Slea Head to continue the visual feast of scenic Ireland. We will stop at Dunbeg fort which takes us back to the 7 / 8th century with the unusual and intriguing Bee Hive Huts.

Slea head has what surely is my favourite beach in the world, Dunquinn. The movie buffs among you will be able to see and learn all about the famous Ryan’s Daughter which was filmed onsite right here. No wonder as this place is simply magical.

We then visit the Gallarus Oratory one of the first churches in Ireland, before some time in Dingle and onwards to Killarney via Inch beach. This is one beautiful day that you will never forget.

Overnight in Killarney, choice of hotel:

  • 5* The Killarney Park, The Europe Hotel, The Aghadoe Heights.
  • 4* The Killarney Plaza, The Great Southern Hotel, The Killarney Royall

Day 6

Ring of Kerry

Today we drive the famous Ring of Kerry, we will visit some lovely colourful little towns along the way, full of colourful characters too! One favourite is Waterville village, Charlie Chaplin fell in love with this place and he vacationed here every year. In fact, in the end, he loved it so much he moved here before he passed on to better things, we hope.

The scenery here is, well maybe I should just say that seeing is believing. We can have some very nice lunch at the Smugglers restaurant overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and proceed to the top of the mountain to see breathtaking views of the Ring of Kerry. We will then drive to my favourite town on the Ring of Kerry which is Kenmare, charming, friendly, traditional, peaceful…you can judge for yourself. When this beautiful day is over we return to Killarney for a grand evening meal.

Overnight in Killarney, choice of hotel:

  • 5* The Killarney Park, The Europe Hotel, The Aghadoe Heights.
  • 4* The Killarney Plaza, The Great Southern Hotel, The Killarney Royal

Day 7

Depart Killarney for Cork, Blarney Stone & Jameson Whiskey Distillery

Today we head for the Blarney Stone & the Blarney Woollen Mills. Go on, do it! Kiss the famous stone that millions of people line up to do every year. Enjoy the Castle grounds which are historically educational as they are enjoyable. Then you can shop till you drop and purchase all your authentic shopping in Blarney Woollen Mills right next door. They will even send it to your house for you!

After Blarney we will head to a favourite gem of mine, the Jameson Whiskey Distillery in Middleton where they make the best whiskey in the world. This is a great tour indeed. If we have time we can visit the heritage town of Cobh, this was the last port of call for the Titanic before that dreaded voyage. We can do the Titanic museum tour there. When the day is over we make our way to Cork City and check in at your hotel of choice for the evening.

Overnight in Cork. Hotel Option:

  • 5* Hayfield Manor
  • 4* The River Lee Hotel.

Day 8

Kinsale & Cobh

Today we head to the unique town of Kinsale, the gourmet capital of Ireland as we know it. This is a beautiful fishing village that you will find on every postcard in Ireland. There are many seafood restaurants here that have made it into good food book all over the world, I kid you not, yes the world!

The name is doubly odd, ‘Fishy Fishy’ but the food in this restaurant is truly delicious, we have to book to get a table and a nice bottle of wine, but leave that to us, they know us well! The atmosphere here is relaxing, authentic and you will have long forgotten every care in the world. You will have plenty of time to go for a nice walk and take in your own piece of Kinsale. When the day is over we will return to Cork City for the evening to your Hotel of choice.

Overnight in Cork. Hotel Option:

  • 5* Hayfield Manor
  • 4* The River Lee Hotel.

Day 9

Depart Cork for Dublin via Rock of Cashel. Trinity College, Book of Kells, St Patricks Cathedral.

Today we will say goodbye to Cork and make our way back to the capital city, Dublin. Enroute we will stop off in the beautiful town of Cashel. It is home of the iconic Rock Of Cashel. Cashel’s rich history is reflected in its built heritage, from medieval monasteries and fortified townhouses, a Georgian Cathedral, and a 21st-century library which holds the smallest book in Ireland! We can stop here then for some lunch before heading off again on our journey to Dublin.

We will then proceed to Trinity College Dublin an absolute must see. As you walk through the cobbled stones you will be brought back to the 18th century, when the magnificent Old Library was constructed. It is here that you will also get to see the world famous Book Of Kells, a 9th-century gospel manuscript. You will also get to view the Long Room which houses over 200,000 of the Library’s oldest books. We will stop for a little refreshment before heading to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Ireland’s largest Cathedral dating back to the 13th century. After a day steeped in history and magnificent sites, you will then return to your hotel of choice for the evening.

Overnight in Dublin, choice of hotels:

  • 5*The Shelbourne, The Merrion. The Westbury, The Conrad Hilton.
  • 4* Brooks Hotel, The Raddison Blu Royal, Dublin.

Day 10

Guinness Storehouse, Kilmainham Gaol and afternoon stroll on Grafton street

After breakfast we will take a short journey to the world famous Guinness Storehouse. Here, you will get to see how the famous stout is made. You will get to taste it and you can also learn how to pull the perfect pint. You will also have time to shop for Guinness memorabilia in their wonderful gift shop.

Next our journey today will take us to Kilmainham Gaol, the biggest unoccupied jail in these Islands. As we walk through you will get a very realistic insight into what it was like to be confined in this house of punishment and correction between 1796 and 1924. Famous Leaders of rebellions were all detained here such names as Robert Emmet, Charles Stewart Parnell, and DeValera. Afterwards, there’ll be time to walk through Dublin’s famous Grafton Street. You can stroll around and do some shopping or soak up the ambiance of street entertainers, musicians and buskers.

Overnight in Dublin, choice of hotels:

  • 5* The Shelbourne, The Merrion. The Westbury, The Conrad Hilton.
  • 4* Brooks Hotel, The Raddison Blu Royal, Dublin.

Day 11

National Library, Jameson Whiskey Factory, Christchurch Cathedral, National Museum…..Howth

For those of you that would like to trace your ancestors, a trip to the National Library is a must. They have Census records dating back to 1901 and the 1911 census of Ireland is fully searchable online. View birth marriage notices dating back to 1845. If you are on the ancestral trail, there is an ideal booklet available to help you on your way, indeed there is a full Genealogy service available (inside office hours). We will then stop for a spot of lunch in one of a few favourite spots before heading to Jameson Whiskey Factory.

Yes, I know we are world famous for so much. Just like the Guinness storehouse, here at the Old Jameson’s Distillery you get to see how the famous whiskey is made and a little taste to finish your day. ‘Uisce Beatha’, the Irish for water of life, taste it here and see for yourself why!

Next we visit Christchurch Cathedral which was founded c. 1028. Here you can explore the medieval Crypt which is one of the largest in Britain and Ireland. It houses fascinating memorials of the mummified “Cat and The Rat” which was mentioned in Finnegans Wake by James Joyce and The Treasury. Christchurch was a major pilgrimage site in the medieval period and today it is still possible to see the relic of the heart of Laurence O Toole, patron saint of Dublin. Just a short journey away then to National Museum steeped in material artifacts of Irish heritage, culture, and natural history.

Day 12

Departure

It’s always a sad day when we bid our guests farewell at Dublin Airport from our beautiful country but we hope that we will see you again sometime, Ireland is infectious. We’ll collect you in good time from your hotel and transfer you to the airport. We’ll ensure you have plenty of time for check-in and duty-free shopping. The phrase in our native tongue says ‘Go n-éirí on bothar libh’ which means may the road rise to meet you.