Luxury Ireland Tour 2020
Céad Míle Fáilte!
That is an Irish language or ‘Gaelic’ phrase which means ‘one hundred thousand welcomes’ and it is the traditional Irish greeting to visitors. We always say there are no strangers here in Ireland, only friends who have not yet met!
I have no doubt that will be your experience also on your luxury Ireland tour…
Ireland is a foreign land, and like all things foreign, Ireland requires interpretation!
Ireland is a small country with a huge story to tell. It is a country steeped in a rich heritage, a checkered and eventful history, it has a varied, and at times, a breathtaking landscape but most importantly it is home to a people imbued with a warmth and friendliness that is second to none.
Ireland’s current story and its recent economic history are obviously less eventful than its past but feature topics that many find fascinating. This is a rags-to-riches tale – or to be perfectly honest – rags-to-riches to rags and back to riches yet again tale.
The Irish are a positive race, seemingly always managing to overcome adversity!
Though small in world terms, Ireland and the Irish have punched far above their weight internationally, not least in the United States where the Irish have had a profound impact on many aspects of life since the 1700s.
Ireland socially, politically, economically, historically and geographically is a complex jigsaw puzzle and to solve it any visitor is advised to get some help. Your personal tour guide will make the tour an enjoyable, informative and educational trip that will give you pleasant memories for a long time to come. We’re sure of it.
The Merrion is a beautiful hotel located in the heart of Dublin’s city Centre, just a few minutes’ walk from the museums, galleries, and shops of Grafton Street. The hotel occupies four Georgian townhouses which have been sensitively renovated so as not to detract from the heritage of the original buildings.
Immerse yourself in 7 floors of fun and excitement as you explore the story of Ireland’s most iconic beer. Enjoy the panoramic views from the famous Gravity Bar, dive into the history of Guinness in Dublin and experience the unique taste of Guinness. With over 20 million visitors, this is Ireland’s number one attraction.
Arthur Guinness founded the family business in 1759 at St. James’s Gate. After learning the history of making beer head to the Gravity Bar on the 7th floor for the most scenic complimentary pint in Dublin. The 360-degree windows afford exceptional views of the city. Here you’ll experience a five-star Guinness tasting experience for the ultimate Guinness connoisseur. This intimate session takes place in a private bar where expert staff will be your personal guides on a sensory journey filled with tales and traditions.
Meet your personal guide, an expert Guinness connoisseur, at the luxurious lounge on the attraction’s 4th floor where you will enjoy your 75-minute tasting session.
1 hour 30-minute guided tour of the brewing and advertising floors, culminating in a tutored tasting session of some of our beers. It’s a great introduction to Dublin.
Can’t decide between a Dublin city & bay private tour or Dublin’s world-famous pubs & whiskey scene? Now you don’t need to choose between the two! Enjoy an authentic Irish experience and exploration of Dublin city & bay followed by a selection of classic Dublin pubs, only the very best. Phenomenal Guinness, Irish craft beer, Irish whiskey, and traditional Irish music.
In addition to some of your classic Dublin sightseeing, I cover the heavyweight pieces of Irish history that still shape our character and the land itself today, namely ‘an gorta mor’ (the great hunger) and the 1916 Easter Rising and our Dublin pub culture that is unrivaled for its craic (fun). We will have plenty of fun along the way too! including some great Irish traditional music that tells stories of their very own.
A private guided tour of the nave, crypt, treasury and belfry with a cathedral guide.
Learn about the rich history of Christ Church and climb up to the Belfry, where you can try your hand at ringing our famous bells
Dublin Deluxe: All the Deluxe Trail tastings are paired with delicious local Irish produce form beautiful artisan Irish cheese, Irish soda bread, local seafood from the Atlantic & Dublin Bay to Irish chocolates…
Meet your guide and a small group of up to 15 people in central Dublin in time your departure (times depend on tour itinerary selected). Set out to the first stop of the tour, Darky Kelly’s, a traditional Irish venue, where you learn more about the history of Irish whiskey and get your first taste of the classic tipple. During your tour, visit up to several more venues and sample different whiskey varieties, as your guide explains what makes each one unique. Your tour ends in Dublin’s Temple Bar district.
You set off for the southern coast and on the route, you will visit a site sacred to Religion and Politics, the famous Rock of Cashel. Later, in the town of Midleton in Cork, you can visit the old Jameson Distillery and sample a ‘wee dram’. Time permitting, a quick visit to the town of Cobh will be possible. This was the last port of call for the ill-fated Titanic and the port of departure for countless Irish emigrants at a very sad time in Irish history. This is all well reprised in the excellent Heritage Centre in the town.
Perryville House is an elegant and distinctive period townhouse overlooking Kinsale Harbor, County Cork in the south of Ireland. Originally built in 1820 and lovingly restored by us, Perryville House is now a warm, gracious and light-filled boutique guesthouse.
For the finest in Irish hospitality and luxury accommodation in Kinsale and your first stop on the Wild Atlantic Way savor a one-of-a-kind, historic hotel experience.
For over 200 years we called Dublin home, but in 1975 we moved our ever-expanding operation to the green expanses of Midleton, Co. Cork. The big move wasn’t without risk, but the migration certainly paid dividends in the whiskey-making department. Our new home provided the space we needed to stretch our legs and our whiskey making ambitions, proximity to barley farmers and freshwater probably aren’t what people typically look for when house hunting, but Midleton seemed to have everything we need as well as the extra space for visitors.
This Experience Includes
2 hour guided tour, Short film and tour of grounds and key distillery buildings, and Premium whiskey tasting experience
Take the extended tour of Jameson Distillery Midleton to gain a deeper insight into the history, production, stories, and enjoyment of Jameson Irish Whiskey.
On this tour, one of our expert Jameson Ambassadors will guide you around some of our key buildings, such as the Micro distillery, the Cooperage, the Maturation Warehouse and a very special visit to the Distiller’s Cottage. Tastings of premium whiskeys are included throughout the tour, just a stone’s throw away from the stills where they are made to this day.
You start the day by gaining the ‘gift of eloquence’. You head for Blarney Castle to kiss the ‘Blarney Stone’. Then, heading west, you drive through storied West Cork taking in some of its military history and ambush sites to continue up over spectacular mountain passes into the ‘Kingdom’ of Kerry.
You arrive in Killarney, the birthplace of tourism in Ireland, where you will stay three nights in a very central location at the Killarney Park Hotel.
The Killarney Park is and has been one of the finest five-star hotels that Ireland has to offer, on the doorstep of Killarney Town Centre and nature’s wonderful attractions alike.
Perfectly located in the heart of Killarney, set on its own mature grounds beside Killarney National Park. Awarded the “Number One Hotel in Ireland” Accolade by TripAdvisor in 2018, this proud Leading Hotel of The World offers a warm, genuine and welcome retreat for guests in search of exceptional comfort with all of those extra little touches.
Old world elegance meets modern-day luxury, where you can look forward to the solace and comfort of open log fires, flawless service and a welcome that will not find anywhere else. Our highly knowledgeable Guest Services Team shall assist you with any aspect of your itinerary. Welcome.
What a day awaits you. Safely accompanied by your driver-guide, you’ll explore The Ring of Kerry today. It’s a circular coastal route forming part of The Wild Atlantic Way in this westerly corner of Ireland.
Heading up towards the mountains, you’ll then travel through Sneem village and on to Molls Gap. You’ll enjoy scenic glory in all directions as your driver-guide masters this winding mountain pass through the peaks. What a view! Never-ending rugged beauty.
You’ll head back down into Killarney National Park next. If you chose not to discover Skellig Ring, you might have time for Muckrose House and Gardens. Or a walk to Torc Waterfall. Alternatively, head back to the hotel and relax in the sheer luxury of this fabulous place.
On the most western edge of Ireland is Dingle Peninsula. And today, you’ll discover just how incredibly serene it is. Your trusted driver-guide will take charge of the route; you’ll just immerse yourself in this wild and rugged landscape. It’s quite an experience.
According to TripAdvisor, Slea Head Drive is one of the top 100 destinations in the world. And it’s right here on the Dingle Peninsula. National Geographic once called it “the most beautiful place on earth”. We tend to agree.
Slea Head Drive is a circular route that starts and finishes in Dingle town. You’re truly getting away from it all here. Secluded golden beaches, fascinating archaeological sites, and the weather-beaten landscape is everywhere. All as nature intended.
If you’re a photographer, you’ll welcome the natural light. If you’re looking for peace, there’s nothing better than a barefoot walk on the beach. Just imagine how the Neolithic settlers made this magical land their home in 4,000BC.
When it comes to lunch, Dingle can tempt you with plenty of local seafood. This is one of Ireland’s Gaeltacht regions and Irish is the first language. Your driver-guide is on-hand to help you out. If you’re looking for an authentic, traditional location, Dingle is an ideal choice.
When it’s time to head back to Killarney, you’ll take the Conor Pass to Tralee. A winding mountain pass where the views are magnificent, the scenery so pristine. Enjoy the journey as your driver-guide returns you safely to your hotel.
This evening in Killarney, we offer you an Irish night with dinner at Kate Kearney’s Cottage. It’s a 150-year-old family-run establishment with a worldwide reputation for its entertainment. You’ll soak up a lively night with traditional food, costumed dancers and warm hospitality.
You’ll say goodbye to Killarney and head north; first to Adare. A designated Heritage Town, this pretty village dates to the 13th century. Adorned with thatched cottages and rich in history, you’ll have time to take a stroll and see for yourself.
When you’re ready, The Cliffs of Moher await you. You’re back on The Wild Atlantic Way again. Towering to an incredible 668 feet high and 5 miles long, The Cliffs of Moher are a UNESCO Global Geopark. Their sheer scale puts everything into perspective.
With uninterrupted views across the mighty Atlantic Ocean, you can wander along the cliff tops and catch sight of basking sharks and dolphins below. There are Kittiwakes and Razorbills, not to mention a myriad of wild coastal flowers to admire. Your driver-guide knows the best spots to enjoy.
If you’d like to explore the visitor center, your entrance fee is included. Alternatively, we can arrange a coastal cruise to take in the cliffs from the water.
During the afternoon, your journey will continue into the Burren Region. Home to Burren National Park, it’s a curious Geosite.
You’ll also discover Neolithic monuments dating back 6,000 years. It’s an area that’s abundant in archaeological history. And your driver-guide has all the details for you.
Your remarkable drive continues along The Wild Atlantic Way, via Galway, arriving in Cong, County Mayo. For the next two nights, you’ll stay at Ashford Castle Hotel, a 5-star luxury with an incredible, 800-year history behind every door.
Step back in time 800 years ago. The Kings Head dates to the 13th Century. On High Street in the heart of Galway’s Latin Quarter stands this landmark pub with a fantastic reputation.
The Legend of the Claddagh Ring is the story of the mystical and beautiful ring first told over 300 years ago in the ancient fishing village of the Claddagh, outside the walls of the City of Galway on the west coast of Ireland.
Unrivaled service, warm Irish hospitality, and five-star luxury await at Ashford Castle, part of the Red Carnation Hotel Collection and a member of Leading Hotels of the World. Situated in a spectacular 350-acre estate, discover sumptuous rooms and suites, splendid interiors brimming with antique furniture, fine fabrics and unique features at every turn.
From fly fishing lessons to half and full-day trips, your guide will tailor your experience to suit your ability and preferences. Suitable for total beginners and competent fishermen alike, most fishing trips take place from traditional wooden boats on Lough Corrib, offering spectacular scenery and incredible views of Ashford Castle from the water. Opt-in for a full day experience and you will enjoy a delicious picnic lunch on one of the islands and even the chance to cook your catch.
Get your learning gloves on at the oldest established Falconry School in Ireland. The school at Ashford Castle offers you the chance to fly a Harris hawk around the breathtaking estate of Ashford Castle in a private Hawk Walk. Within no time you will have one of the majestic birds on your arm in the picturesque woodland grounds of the castle. This is an experience you’re not likely to forget, especially when your hawk first swoops down from a tree and lands on your gloved fist.
Today you head north but before leaving County Galway you may fit in a visit to Kylemore Abbey, a wedding-present stately home that progressed to being a convent and exclusive girls’ school.
The pretty ‘planned town’ of Westport is on the route and a good spot to stop for a ramble, lunch and some shopping.
If you wish, you may visit the Irish Museum of Country Life or the catholic Marian shrine at Knock, a magnet for worshippers from Ireland and abroad
And now, County Donegal beckons. God’s County. It topped the National Geographic Cool List in 2017. With good reason. You’ll be off the beaten track again, surrounded by castles, rugged coastline, and mountain peaks. An escape from it all
This secluded, 5-star hotel is on the edge of Donegal Town. Not surprisingly, there’s plenty of history to the site, with close links to the O’Donnell Clan. Today, this award-winning hotel is a place of sheer decadence in every sense. You’ll remember your stay here for years to come.
The only Irish hotel to achieve a World Luxury Hotel award, Lough Eske Castle has been given the “World’s Best Luxury Hotel” award for FIVE consecutive years! Further recent awards include one of Condé Nast’s top three luxury hotels in Ireland; TripAdvisor Traveler’s Choice Award 2014.
There are lots to discover in Donegal County today and you’ll have your driver-guide to help you. Traveling via Killbegs – Ireland’s largest fishing port – you’ll continue along Donegal Bay to Kilcar. This is a gorgeous part of The Wild Atlantic Way. You’re never far from coastal wonder in this part of the country.
You’ll first stop at Slieve League. They’re the highest sea cliffs in Europe at almost 2,000 feet. Standing on what could be the edge of the world, you’ll feel the might of this landscape, the Atlantic Ocean swirling far below your feet. Take some time to drink in the astonishing views from such height. Feel at one with nature.
When you’re ready, you’ll next head to Glencolmcille. It’s a pretty little village, sitting firmly in a Gaeltacht (Irish speaking) area. Ask your driver-guide to teach you a few phrases on the way. You’ll enjoy a memorable experience if you do.
And so, your tour of Donegal County continues. The tiny, traditional town of Adara is next. Look out for Loughros Point and its stunning views over the Atlantic Ocean.
If you’d like to experience a hand-weaving demonstration, we can organize that for you today. You’ll also stop at a real Irish pub for a genuine pint of the black stuff. Bushmills, if you prefer. And there’s locally caught seafood when you’re feeling hungry.
Returning to Solis Lough Eske Castle after a fabulous day, you’ll want to relax and indulge in the many luxuries this evening.
Your private Donegal tour guide is passionate about showcasing the gems of his homeland. Fanad Lighthouse overlooks Mulroy Bay to the West, Lough Swilly to the East and the Atlantic Ocean to the North. Dominated by Muckish Mountain, Sheephaven Bay boasts ancient castles and a panoramic Atlantic Drive.
This morning, you’ll head to Derry (also known as Londonderry) on your way to Belfast. The second-largest city in Northern Ireland, it’s completely walled with seven gates. A complex history dates back some 1,500 years, whilst the city boasts a vibrant and modern culture today.
You’ll next travel to Belfast – a city that needs little introduction.
Later in the afternoon, you’ll check-in at the Merchant Hotel for a two-night stay. This is certainly one of Belfast’s finest 5-star hotels. Located in the heart of the Cathedral Quarter, it couldn’t be more convenient. A Grade A listed building with an art deco-inspired wing, it’s a truly remarkable building, with gorgeous décor and bespoke furnishings inside.
You’ll experience an award-winning walking tour of Derry, learning more about the Bogside, The Bloody Sunday Story, and The Peoples’ Gallery. It’s an insightful tour that also stops at many vantage points across the city’s architecture.
Our Belfast City Sightseeing Tour is designed to give you the tourist a well-rounded trip and view of Belfast City. We take in each corner of the city and bring you to all the best bits within the city of Belfast.
Located in the heart of Belfast, on the very slipways where the Titanic was built, Titanic Belfast is spread over nine galleries, with multiple dimensions to the exhibition. Drawing together special effects, dark rides, full-scale reconstructions and innovative interactive features to explore the Titanic story in a fresh and insightful way; from her conception in Belfast in the early 1900s, through her construction and launch, to her infamous maiden voyage and catastrophic demise.
The journey goes beyond the aftermath of the sinking, to the discovery of the wreck and continues into the present day with a live undersea exploration center.