DAY 1: SHANNON – NEWMARKET ON FERGUS
Discover Ireland with a private driver-guide, featuring experienced driving skills and expert local knowledge and insight into the best towns, monuments and historic sites of the Emerald Isle. In addition to your pre-booked customized touring, get recommendations on where to shop, have a drink, grab a bite, and even lesser-known sites typically ignored by visitors, all of which you can stop to visit on a whim (payable on the spot), because your days have built-in flexibility. Enjoy an introduction to Ireland with such depth and quality that’s only possible with a local expert. Simply the best and most enjoyable way of seeing the Emerald Isle, in style!
Meet your awaiting private driver-guide for an airport transfer, checking in at your hotel (time permitting) before heading out to explore the Burren and Cliffs of Moher, a UNESCO Global Geopark in West Clare, ranked at the top of Ireland’s most rugged and dramatic landscapes with shifting and sculpted stone creating unforgettable scenery you won’t want to miss. Discover the quaint and picturesque seaport villages of Kinvarra and Ballyvaughan, the former of which will allow you to catch views of the 16th century Dunguaire Castle, one of the most photographed castles in all of Ireland. In Polnabrone, head out across a rocky, glacio-karst field worn away by ancient glaciers to view an impressive neolithic portal tomb, called the Poulnabrone Dolmen, a stone burial monument erected by some of the very first settlers to this remote, pitted landscape over 5,200 years ago. On arrival to visit the Cliffs of Moher, you’ll head out along the pathways, walking to various viewing platforms for different lookout points out across what is easily one of Ireland’s most iconic views – offering moments of contemplation and awe, as you gaze out across sheer, eroded cliffsides which drop dramatically down 700 feet to the North Atlantic below. Conclude your day back in Newmarket on Fergus.
A welcome package with a city map, train tickets (if relevant), and any other touristic information that we deem you may find useful, will be provided to you on your first day in destination. Accommodation: Dromoland Castle
DAY 2: NEWMARKET ON FERGUS – KILLARNEY
Setting out today with your private driver-guide, embark on a discovery of one of Ireland’s loveliest regions, the famed Ring of Kerry. Poets, painters, writers and musicians have all tried to convey the beauty of the Ring, with mountains, valleys, and lakes, blending into a palette of scenic splendor. Leaving Newmarket on Fergus, you’ll transfer to Killarney, approximately 2 hours away, where your true adventure begins. A cornerstone of the Ring of Kerry, your day will include a visit to Muckross House, a magnificent Victorian mansion and one of Ireland’s leading stately homes. The elegantly furnished rooms portray the lifestyle of the landed gentry, while downstairs in the basement one can experience the working conditions of the servants employed in the house. You’ll travel through Molls Gap, a scenic mountain pass through the Macgillycuddy’s Reeks, and Ladies View, offering a majestic viewpoint across Killarney National Park, then continue along the broad, dramatic coastline of the Iveragh Peninsula and through the charming villages and towns of Killorglin, Cahirsiveen, Waterville and Sneem. Time permitting, you can stop and walk out to view the impressive ancient stone ring forts of Cahergal and Leacanabuaile, dating back to around 600AD, in addition to catching majestic viewpoints of the ever-changing Atlantic coastline all throughout your day. Accommodation: Killarney Park or similar
DAY 3: KILLARNEY
Depart Killarney and head northwest with your private driver-guide for a day of exploration in the Dingle Peninsula, where you can admire wild ocean scenery, ancient relics and a profusion of every sort of color blossoming in the hedgerows. Here, the ever-changing landscape shifts from from mountains and rolling hills to coastlines of craggy cliffs and sandy beaches. Head first to one of such beaches, known as Inch Beach, a scenic spot for a stroll to admire its sandy dunes and coast framed by a beautiful mountain backdrop. Upon reaching the town of Dingle, join up with the Slea Head Drive, a scenic circuit on the peninsula which will bring you directly to Slea Head itself for a remarkable view, a majestic promontory jutting out into the wild waters of the Atlantic. Look out over the Blasket Islands as you stand at arguably the westernmost point of mainland Europe. Continuing along, make a stop at the ancient early Christian ruins of the Reasc Monastery at Ballyferriter, featuring an important carved stone dating back to the 6th century. Later you’ll exit the western peninsula via the dramatic Conor Pass, Ireland’s highest mountain pass, with a narrow, twisting road snaking past a remarkable glacial landscape of mountains, valleys, and corrie lakes. There are countless optional stops along the way, including the curious ancient Fahaan Beehive Huts, or for the seafaring type, perhaps a ferry ride out to the Blasket Islands. In order to give as much flexibility as possible, entrance fees for optional stops are not included and can be paid on the spot.
DAY 4: KILLARNEY – CORK
Enjoy beautiful views of the bucolic West Cork coastline as you transfer from Killarney to Cork today with your private driver-guide. Head to Glengariff, located at the foot of the Caha Mountains that separate Cork from Kerry, a dense lush sub-tropical valley with beautiful natural scenery. Inland from here is the solitary chapel on an island by the lake at Gougane Barra, one of Ireland’s most romantic locations. In Baltimore, you can walk out to the intriguing Lot’s Wife, a white stone beacon with a stunning coastal view out across to the adjacent Sherkin Island. Along the coast, you’ll get to stop at the quaint fishing villages of Glandore and Union Hall. Among the highlights as you continue your day, is a stop at the ancient Drombeg Stone Circle, also known as the Druid’s Altar, a 2,000 year-old megalithic stone circle which evokes thoughts of very different time. Just outside of Cork, you’ll get to visit the picturesque 15th century ruins of Blarney Castle, where legend has it a kiss of the Blarney Stone bestows the kisser the gift of the gab. At day’s end you will arrive to your accommodation in Cork for check-in. Accommodation: Hayfield Manor or similar
DAY 5: CORK – DUBLIN
Embark on a full day transfer from Cork to Dublin with your private driver-guide, stopping en route in the historic city of Waterford, the approximate midpoint of your route, nearly 2 hours away from each location. Waterford is the oldest city in the Republic of Ireland, being founded by the Vikings back in the year 914. See the thousand-year-old Reginald’s Tower in the Viking Triangle, and witness ancient segments of what is considered the country’s largest collection of medieval defensive walls. Beyond ancient relics, Waterford is also well known as the source of Waterford Crystal, and you’ll get to visit the wonderful House of Waterford Crystal, a facility which has been producing beautiful decorative and functional glassware for over a century. Enjoy the scenic views throughout the day as you journey onward toward Dublin, where your day concludes. Accommodation: Merrion or similar
DAY 6: DUBLIN
Meet your private guide at your hotel and set out on foot for a half-day walking tour of Dublin, exploring the highlights of the lively Irish capital. Stroll through the landscaped grounds of St Stephen’s Green, a public park dating back to 1664, followed by a walk through Merrion Square, with its impressive red brick Georgian townhouses. Stroll past the historic Dublin Castle, former seat of the English, along with the Lords and Kings of Ireland, now used for all State ceremonial events. Pass by Christchurch, built by the Anglo-Norman’s in 1172 to replace an earlier Church built by the Vikings in 1038. No visit to Dublin would be complete without a visit to St Patrick’s Cathedral, a highlight of your tour. Built in 1192, it is one of Ireland’s largest cathedrals, made famous by its former dean Jonathan Swift, author of Gulliver’s Travels. Check out the old cobbled lanes and hip establishments of Temple Bar, Dublin’s cultural quarter, and visit Trinity College where you’ll be able to see the 8th century Book of Kells, perhaps the world’s most beautifully illustrated book and gaze upon the 200,000 books of the long room. Conclude your tour back at your hotel.
Enjoy an afternoon at leisure, spending your time as you wish, perhaps visiting one of Dublin’s many famous attractions, such as the Guinness Storehouse or the Jameson Distillery, both offering a unique view into the history and production of these famous Irish exports, with the experience generally wrapped up with a delicious sample of the product. If you’re in the mood for shopping, the world-famous Grafton Street is probably where your time is best spent, though Nassau Street and O’Connell Street are suitable alternatives as well.
DAY 7: DUBLIN
Meet your private driver and vehicle for an airport transfer. Depart from International Airport. End of itinerary.
Luxury Custom Tour from $4,599USD per person, land only
Please note this is a sample package only. Rates are per person based on double occupancy and subject to change without notice. Starting from rate based on travel in off peak months. Rates may be higher or lower depending on your specific travel dates and hotel selections. Package can be fully customized to the travelers needs. Airfare is not included but can be added. Valid US passport required for travel.
Contact us today for your custom quote!