The Grand Tour of Ireland

Travel Idea:

The Grand Tour of Ireland

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Length of trip:

12 days

Approximate price of this trip per person:

from $ 2175 to $ 2199

Best travel dates to go:

Jul 05, 2008 to Jul 16, 2008; Sep 13, 2008 to Sep 24, 2008; Jul 19, 2008 to Jul 30, 2008; Aug 09, 2008 to Aug 20, 2008; Sep 20, 2008 to Oct 01, 2008;


Detailed Description of this trip:

From towering cliffs to quaint village pubs, to historical sights, Sceptre's escorted tours have something for everyone. Enjoy the luxury of first class accommodations at 5-Star and castle hotels, while traveling in a deluxe motorcoach. Begin your adventure at a natural wonder like the Cliffs of Moher or travel back to Viking and medieval times.



Trip Itinerary:

  • Day 1 - On the Plane

    Depart USA.
    Commercial Flight

    Fly transatlantic overnight to Ireland.

  • Day 2 - Dublin

    Arrive in Dublin, Ireland.

    Welcome to Dublin! Upon arrival, you are met and transferred to your hotel.

    Cooking Classes

    Spend the afternoon relaxing or travel to the Guinness Storehouse and discover what goes into making a pint of Guinness; the ingredients, brewing process, time, the craft and passion.

    Sightseeing

    The journey ends on the roof in Gravity Bar with a pint and a spectacular view of Dublin.

    Food and Dining

    This evening, get to know your fellow travellers over a Welcome Dinner and entertainment at a famous Irish Cabaret (when not operating, visit the Abbey Tavern instead).

  • Day 3 - Dublin

    Tour Historic Dublin.
    Sightseeing

    See Georgian squares and pass Christ Church on your way to stately St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

    Sightseeing

    On to the seat of learning at the heart of Dublin, Trinity College. Walk across the cobbled squares to the old library and see one of Ireland’s greatest treasures – the 8th century Book of Kells.

    Shopping

    Spend the rest of your day exploring the city’s shops, galleries and museums or relax in a café or pub.

  • Day 4 - Cork

    Dublin / Glendalough / Waterford / Cork.
    Bus

    Travel through the serene Wicklow Mountains to the monastic ruins at Glendalough.

    Sightseeing

    On to the ancient town of Waterford with its colorful terrace houses, cafés and bars overlooking the quayside.

    Arts, Crafts and Antiques

    At the Waterford Crystal Factory, watch master craftsmen at work in the centuries old tradition of glass cutting and engraving, then stroll through the splendid showrooms.

    Bus

    On to Cork, the largest city on Ireland’s south coast.

  • Day 5 - Killarney

    Cork / Blarney / Killarney.
    Sightseeing

    Your first stop today is Blarney Castle with its magical stone that gives the gift of eloquence for a kiss.

    Shopping

    Stroll across to the Blarney Woollen Mills to shop for fine Irish knitwear and handicrafts.

    Sightseeing

    Then on to Killarney, famous for its cheerful atmosphere and what the Irish call “craic" – Gaelic for fun.

  • Day 6 - Killarney

    The Ring Of Kerry.
    Sightseeing

    Journey along the road that winds around the beautiful Iveragh Peninsula, better known as “The Ring of Kerry". This is one of the most beautiful and magical places in Ireland. Here mountains, valleys, lakes and sea blend into a landscape that is breathtaking beyond words.

    Sightseeing

    After dinner, you are free to stroll through Killarney town.

  • Day 7 - Killarney

    Killarney/Cliffs Of Moher/Galway/Connemara.
    Sightseeing

    This morning cross the Shannon estuary by ferry and enter County Clare to walk along the Cliffs of Moher: a magical vista awaits you.

    Bus

    Then travel north across the Burren, a suddenly stark and barren landscape dotted with rare flora.

    Sightseeing

    Drop in for afternoon tea at Rathbaun Farm and meet an Irish farming family as they carry out their daily chores. Watch as the farmer shears a sheep and maneuvers his flock with the help of his dog.

    Sightseeing

    Next, on tour Galway, "City of the Tribes," including lovely Galway Cathederal.

    Relaxation

    The balance of your day is leisure.

  • Day 8 - Ireland

    Connemara Excursion.
    Sightseeing

    In the West of Ireland, the starkly beautiful mountains of Galway and Mayo drop down the coast. Little white-washed cottages are scattered over a land of mountains, brooks and rivers.

    Sightseeing

    Visit Kylemore Abbey, a castellated neo-Gothic mansion, occupied by the Irish Benedictine community of nuns who came from Ypres after World War I.

  • Day 9 - Sligo

    Connemara / Sligo / Donegal.
    Sightseeing

    First stop is the Shrine at Knock, a place of modern pilgrimage for millions. In 1879, the figures of Mary, St. Joseph and St. John are reported to have miraculously appeared here in a vision to 15 local people.

    Sightseeing

    In County Sligo, bid your own farewell to W.B. Yeats, Ireland’s great poet at Drumcliff churchyard.

    Bus

    Then continue on to Bundoran on Donegal Bay, in the heart of picturesque Donegal.

  • Day 10 - Ireland

    Glenveagh National Park Excursion.
    National Parks

    Travel north to Glenveagh National Park. Covering nearly 40,000 acres, the Park is Ireland’s largest. It encompasses scenic lakes, forested hills, and majestic mountains, including the two highest peaks in Donegal. This is also home to the largest herd of red deer in Ireland.

    Sightseeing

    Board minibuses for the trip to Glenveagh Castle, a 19th century mansion. You may want to take a guided tour of the sumptuous interior or stroll through the formal gardens and rhododendron woods or along one of the many trails.

  • Day 11 - Dublin

    Donegal / Dublin.
    Sightseeing

    Today, travel south from the Heritage Centre at Bru-na-Boinne. Visit the awe-inspiring Neolithic tombs at Knowth which predate the pyramids by 1000 years. (Some tours may substitute this with a visit to the historic Hill of Tara.) This peaceful place is in high contrast to the final destination of your tour, Dublin.

  • Day 12 - Dublin

    Depart Dublin.

    Your homebound flight arrives the same day.

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