The Heart of Ireland
8 DAYS, 7 NIGHTS | Experience the best of Ireland in 8 days: Dublin, Tipperary, Kerry, Dingle & County Clare
PRIVATE TOUR ITINERARY
The Heart of Ireland — see the best of Ireland in 8 days with your very own chauffeur-guide! Visit the Emerald Isle's must-see historical sites, charming towns, music-filled pubs, spectacular scenery and prehistoric sites — including the Rock of Cashel, the Cliffs of Moher, Dingle, the Great Blasket Centre, Blarney Castle, an optional visit to the Aran Islands, an insider's walking tour of Dublin, the ancient tombs of Brú na Bóinne, gourmet dinners, a sheepdog demonstration, Gaelic tunes, and more. Enjoy the Heart of Ireland!
Day 1: Dublin & the Boyne Valley
Arrive Dublin Airport where you will be met by your chauffeur-guide. You’ll then be driven an hour out of Dublin to one of Europe's premier archaeological sites: the ancient tombs of Brú na Bóinne, or Boyne Valley. Predating Stonehenge by a thousand years and the pyramids at Giza by 500, these massive "passage tombs" of Newgrange and Knowth are windows into a mysterious, pre-Celtic Ireland, just as it was pulling itself up and out of the Stone Age. Continue to your hotel in central Dublin for a two-night stay.
Day 2: The Historic Heart of Dublin
This morning, enjoy a private-guided walking tour learning about Dublin's often calamitous history, from the days of Viking raids to the hard centuries of British occupation, to its remarkable literary legacy, to the modern city of today. Finish with a visit to the stunning Old Library, Trinity College, for an illuminating look at the remarkable Book of Kells, a jolt of Irish creativity that helped pull Europe out of the Dark Ages. The rest of your day will be free to take in some of Dublin's other world-class sights, such as the National Museum, Guinness Storehouse or Dublin Castle.
Day 3: Rock of Cashel & Blarney Castle
Today, say goodbye to Dublin as your chauffeur-guide drives you across the Emerald isle. On your way visit one of Ireland's most historic and evocative sights: The Rock of Cashel. St. Patrick himself was here more than 1,500 years ago, and ever since, the Rock has been the spiritual heart of Ireland. From the craggy remains of the cathedral and castle to the views stretching out across the Plain of Tipperary, this is one Ireland’s most spectacular historic sites. From Cashel continue to Blarney Castle where you may climb the tower and kiss the famous Blarney Stone, said to bestow the “gift of the gab” upon all who dare. Then to Kenmare, in the south west corner of Ireland, for an overnight stay. This evening is free for you to dine in idyllic Kenmare, known for gourmet experiences.
Day 4: Ring of Kerry
Today experience the spectacular Ring of Kerry and the wild scenery of Killarney National Park. View Molls Gap, Ladies View and Torc Waterfall, and visit the evocative Ross Castle and the beautiful Muckross House & Gardens, all set against stunning beauty. Enjoy a jaunting car ride (horse carriage ride) in the National Park. At the end of your day, arrive in the pastel-painted, quintessentially Irish harbor town of Dingle for a two-night stay.
Day 5: Dingle Peninsula
Experience some of Europe's wildest natural beauty and most ancient Christian sites. Follow the famous Slea Head Drive, arguably the most beautiful road in Ireland. The tour will include visits to the ancient Famine Cottages, where there will also be a sheepdog demonstration by a local farmer, and stops at Dunbeg Fort and Coumeenole Beach. You’ll visit the strikingly situated Great Blasket Centre, where you'll get a close-up look at the language, literature, and daily life of a traditional Gaelic Blasket community. The remainder of the afternoon is free for you to soak in more of Dingle's charms and enjoy dinner on your own.
Day 6: Wild Atlantic Way
Depart Dingle, and continue on to Tralee for the Wild Atlantic Way, crossing the Shannon estuary by ferry, and passing more spectacular scenery along the way. Explore the dramatic coastline of County Clare and arrive at the sumptuous surroundings of the Ballinalacken Castle Country House Hotel for a two-night stay. The location of the Ballinalacken is fabulous. Right on the coast, it sits up high and boasts magnificent views of the Atlantic, and the Aran Islands. Tonight enjoy a gourmet dinner in Lord O’Brien’s former dining room.
Day 7: Aran Island | Cliffs of Moher | The Burren
This morning, enjoy an excursion by boat from Doolin to Inis Oírr, the smallest of the Aran Islands. On arrival, explore the island on a horse and trap (cart) tour. After lunch, return by ferry to the mainland via the sensational Cliffs of Moher, the most dramatic way to view the famous cliffs. In the afternoon, explore the intriguing landscape of the Burren (the largest limestone area of Europe), the ruins of the ancient abbey of Corcomroe, and the prehistoric Poulnabrone dolmen (an eerie mystery left by unknown Celtic people). Upon returning to the hotel, enjoy a guided tour of the hotel’s own castle. A gourmet dinner is reserved for you at the hotel restaurant.
Day 8: Transfer to Shannon Airport
Today, leave with your chauffeur-guide to Shannon Airport, from where there are both direct and connecting flights to North America.
Dublin (2 nights)
Deluxe rooms in a family-run luxury 4-star hotel which offers something rare and valuable – a stylish and truly snug refuge from the world. Centrally located in the heart of Dublin. It’s quiet, discreet and beautifully appointed.
Kenmare (1 night)
A luxury four-star guesthouse directly opposite Kenmare's 18-hole golf course, surrounded by its own private gardens and within a five-minute walk of some of the finest restaurants in Ireland.
Dingle (2 nights)
Sea view rooms in a luxury family owned four-star guesthouse, overlooking Dingle Bay and within a five-minute walk of Dingle town.
Doolin (2 nights)
Four-poster guest rooms in a luxury country house hotel which offers in abundance a family atmosphere, luxury furnishings, history and culture and gourmet dining.
What a fantastic tour! We loved every minute of it and felt like kings and queens with the impeccable service you gave us. Thank you!
Dennis M., Sheila M.' - Massachusetts
$3090 per person (for a group of 6 people)
$3490 per person (for a group of 4-5 people)
$4590 per person (for a group of 2-3 people)
All prices are in US dollars and based on sharing a room for double occupancy.
This tour can be customized to your wishes. Simply call, or email us with your specifics and we'll plan a program that's right for you.
Included with this tour:
Seven nights' accommodation in luxury hotels or guest houses
Daily Irish breakfasts
Three 3-course gourmet dinners
All transportation in a luxury Mercedes
Chauffeur-Guide each day, except day 2
Local guide in Dublin (day 2)
Aran Island & Cliffs of Moher boat trip
Airport meet and greet
All entrance fees
Ferry fares, tolls & taxes
Each day customizable & flexible
Scotland & Ireland
Great trip...can't say enough about Wanderlust. Their professionalism and service is top notch. Highly recommend them.
John A. Suzanne A., - Massachusetts
Just a few tour highlights:
Rock of Cashel
Ring of Kerry
Historic Heart of Dublin
Traditional Irish Music
Mighty Cliffs of Moher
Slea Head Drive
Scotland & Ireland Grand Tour
The Best of Both Countries
15 Days | 14 Nights | From $5,690
Why not add Scotland to your itinerary? Click here for details of the above tour.