Discover Scotland & Ireland in 16 days
16 DAYS, 15 NIGHTS | Edinburgh, St. Andrews, Highlands, Skye, Dublin, Killarney, Dingle, Cliffs of Moher & Aran Islands
PRIVATE TOUR ITINERARY
Discover Scotland & Ireland — see the best of both countries in 15 days on this beautifully guided journey. You'll enjoy private-guided walking tours of Edinburgh, St. Andrews and Dublin. You’ll learn about the long history of Edinburgh. You'll experience Scotland and Ireland’s must-see historical sites, and spectacular scenery along the way. In Scotland, tour the powerfully moving site of the final Jacobite Rising, the Culloden Battlefield. You’ll cruise Loch Ness and visit the Isle of Skye and fortify yourself with a wee dram at a well known Scottish Distillery. In Ireland, enjoy Gaelic tunes in the music filled bars of Dingle and gourmet dinners at hand-picked restaurants. Tour the Slea Head Drive along the Dingle Peninsula, lean into the wind on the very edge of Europe at the Cliffs of Moher and visit the Guinness Storehouse. Discover Scotland & Ireland!
Day 1: Edinburgh & Royal Yacht Britannia
Arrive Edinburgh airport where you will be met by your chauffeur-guide. On your way into Edinburgh, visit the Royal Yacht Britannia, the former yacht of the Royal family. From the elegant State Apartments to the gleaming Engine Room. See where members of the Royal family spent their summer holidays. You may enjoy refreshments or a light lunch at the Royal Deck Tea Room. Next, arrive at an award-winning five-star bed & breakfast in central Edinburgh. Enjoy dinner with whiskey tastings at a popular local restaurant.
Day 2: Edinburgh
Today, meet your kilt wearing local guide for a whole-day tour of Edinburgh. Learn all about Edinburgh’s long history—see how the medieval townhouses along the Royal Mile contrast with the fine Georgian architecture of the 200-year-old New Town and learn about the many prominent Scottish inventors, doctors, and writers for whom Edinburgh is famous. Visit the majestic Edinburgh Castle to tour this historic military stronghold, the birthplace of the city, and soak up the dramatic views. In the afternoon, wind your way through the medieval streets of the Royal Mile for a visit to the impressive Palace of Holyrood, home to many kings and queens and where, recently, Queen Elizabeth lay in state before being transferred to Westminster Abbey in London. David I founded the impressive palace as an Augustinian monastery in 1128. In 1501, James IV built a Palace for himself and his bride, Margaret Tudor— the sister of Henry VIII. Mary, Queen of Scots spent most of her turbulent life in the Palace. See her private medieval apartments where her secretary, David Rizzio, was murdered by a group led by her husband Lord Darnley, jealous of Rizzio's influence over Mary.
Day 3: Stirling & Blackness Castle
This morning visit Stirling Castle, the last stronghold of Scotland, besieged by William Wallace and Robert the Bruce and residence of the Stewart monarchs including Mary Queen of Scots and King James. You’ll tour the castle, including the newly restored Renaissance Palace. On your return to Edinburgh, visit Blackness Castle, a garrison fortress on the south shores of the Firth of Forth.
Day 4) St. Andrews & Highlands
This morning, depart Edinburgh for the beautiful medieval city of St. Andrews, set on the stunning north coast of the Kingdom of Fife. View the Old Course, and for golf enthusiasts, a photo opportunity at the Swilken Bridge. You'll also enjoy a private-guided walking tour of historic St. Andrews—packed with history and charm. Visits will include the university (founded in 1413) and the ruins of the 12th-century cathedral and castle. Depart St. Andrews for the Scottish Highlands. Arrive at an award winning five-star luxury bed & breakfast beautifully situated in the countryside, a short distance from Inverness and Culloden. Tonight, dinner is included in Inverness at a seafood restaurant.
Day 5) Culloden, Cawdor Castle & Whisky Distillery
Today. visit the Culloden Battlefield—the powerfully emotive and atmospheric battlefield where the 1745 Jacobite Rising came to a tragic end. You’ll discover the true story of the 1745 Rising, from both the Jacobite and Government perspectives, in the newly accredited museum where unique artifacts from the time are displayed. Walk the battlefield and explore the key areas of action on Culloden Moor. Continue for visits to Clava Cairns, an impressive collection of prehistoric burial chambers said to have inspired Outlander, and Cawdor Castle & Gardens, a traditional Scottish Castle built and inhabited by the Cawdor family for over 600 years. This afternoon, learn about how whisky is made on a distillery tour and sample a “wee dram”. Tonight, dinner is included at Cawdor Tavern.
Day 6) Loch Ness & Western Highlands
Today, depart for Loch Ness, famous for the legendary Nessie. You’ll be treated to panoramic views of the Highlands as you approach Urquhart Castle, where you’ll visit this famous castle perched majestically above the shoreline. Continue to Fort Augustus, where Loch Ness meets Thomas Telford’s Caledonian Canal and where you will see a flight of five stepped locks in the village, as the Caledonian Canal drops down to join Loch Ness. . This afternoon, depart through the Western Highlands, for a visit to Eilean Donan Castle, the most iconic of Scottish castles. Next cross the bridge to the Isle of Skye. Arrive at your accommodation, a former hunting lodge for Clan MacDonald and now a delightful family-run inn where you are assured a comfortable, relaxing stay with loch views. Enjoy dinner at the lodge restaurant, serving delicious home cooking with a bar and living room, all with a sea view.
Day 7) Isle of Skye
Today, explore the Isle of Skye where you will visit: Dun Beag Broch, where you will be rewarded with spectacular coastal views and the ruins of a pre-Christian era hillfort; Neist Point, surrounded by stunning natural landscape, on the most westerly point of the island; Trotternish, Isle of Skye’s most northern peninsula; the Skye Museum of Island Life, where you will step back in time in old Highland life; and the Old Man of Storr, a large pinnacle of towering rock of Viking legend. Enjoy your second dinner at your accommodation this evening.
Day 8) Glencoe & Port Appin
Depart for Armadale where you’ll depart the Isle of Skye by ferry to Mallaig. Continue by the Glenfinnan Tower Monument, where Bonnie Prince Charles rallied support for the Jacobite Rising of 1746, to Fort William for lunch at the Ben Nevis Inn, at the foot of Ben Nevis, Scotland’s highest mountain This afternoon, visit Glencoe with stunning mountain views. At the Visitor Center, learn about the dramatic history of this famous site. Continue to the Port Appin for an overnight stay at the Pier House Hotel, set against breathtaking loch side views. and where dinner is included this evening.
Day 9) depart Edinburgh for Cork, Ireland
Depart across the beautiful and mountainous landscape of Rannoch Moor for Edinburgh. Depart Edinburgh for Cork in Ireland where you’ll be greeted by your Irish chauffeur-guide. Continue your journey to quaint Kenmare, a haven of tranquility, gourmet food and breathtaking scenery, for an overnight stay. Dinner is included tonight at a gourmet restaurant in the village.
Day 10) Kerry & Killarney National Park
Today, experience the wild scenery of Killarney National Park. View Molls Gap, Ladies View and Torc Waterfall. Visit the evocative Ross Castle and the beautiful Muckross House & Gardens, all set against stunning beauty. Enjoy a horse carriage ride in the National Park and head to the pastel-painted, quintessentially Irish harbor town of Dingle for a two-night stay at an award winning hotel with sea views, Dingle is a lively Gaeltacht town of seafaring heritage where instrumental music and song have a long tradition. You will arrive in time to explore this colorful town and enjoy dinner and local music.
Day 11) Hawk Walk & Dingle Peninsula
Today, discover the Dingle Peninsula along the Slea Head Drive, one of the most scenic routes in Ireland which will include a Hawk Walk, an incredible experience. You will learn how to hold a hawk as they fly between you along the beach. You will visit the Blasket Island Heritage Center ¬– with stunning views of the wild Atlantic coast and islands. The Blasket Centre is a fascinating museum, honoring the unique community who lived on the remote Blasket Islands until their evacuation in 1953. You will experience incredible coastal views, and if time permits, visit a sheep farm for a sheep dog demonstration. Tonight, explore more of Dingle’s delights for which your driver will make recommendations.
Day 12) Conor Pass & Atlantic Way
This morning, you’ll drive across Ireland’s highest mountain pass, the Conor Pass. You’ll follow the Wild Atlantic Way north, cross the Shannon estuary by ferry, and head to the sensational Cliffs of Moher, where you will find yourself leaning into the wind on the very edge of Europe, more than 600 feet above the waters of the North Atlantic. Next, arrive at the Ballinalacken Country House and Castle Hotel for the next two nights. The Ballinalacken is strikingly situated with magnificent views of the Atlantic and the Aran Islands. Tonight, enjoy a gourmet dinner at your lodging.
Day 13) Aran Island of Inis Oírr & Cliffs of Moher
Today, you’ll board a ferry at Doolin Harbor bound for the stark beauty of Inis Oírr, the smallest of the Aran Islands. On arrival, enjoy a pony and trap (cart) tour of the island. On your return to the mainland, admire the Cliffs of Moher in the most spectacular way, from the sea. This evening, receive a private tour of a medieval castle next to your hotel by the hotel's owner. Enjoy your second gourmet dinner at the hotel.
Day 14) The Burren & Athlone Castle
This morning, on route to Dublin, explore the intriguing rocky landscape of the Burren and its hardy prehistoric residents, including the Poulnabrone Dolmen—also called the ‘Hole of Sorrow’—the most iconic of Ireland’s megalithic structures. Continue your journey to Athlone where you’ll visit Athlone Castle. Standing at a strategic crossing point on the River Shannon, Athlone Castle has played a crucial role in the events that have shaped Ireland. Explore its secrets and stories, tales of battle and bloodlust, destructions and new beginnings. Adjacent to the castle is Sean’s Bar, the oldest pub in Ireland, with over a thousand years of history. The pub has crafted its own unique blend of grain and malt whiskey, matured over time in bourbon casks. Next, arrive in Dublin for a two-night stay at a four star luxury hotel in the heart of the city within walking distance of all main attractions.
Day 15) Dublin
Enjoy a private-guided walking tour of Dublin. You’ll learn about its 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. The rest of the day is free for you to enjoy Dublin on your own, such as the Epic Irish Immigration Museum, National Gallery, Guinness Storehouse and Trinity College Library. Tonight, you may enjoy Celtic Nights Show as an option.
Day 16) Dublin Airport
Transfer by private car to Dublin Airport for your onward flight.
Included with this private tour:
15 nights of hotel accommodation
9 three-course gourmet dinners
Daily Scottish or Irish breakfast
Your very own professional
Travel in a premium SUV or minivan
Airfare Edinburgh to Cork
All entrance fees
Just a few private tour highlights:
Private-guided walking tours of Edinburgh, St. Andrews & Dublin
Horse & carriage ride in the Killarney National Park and on Inis Oírr
Boat tour to Inis Oírr, the smallest of the Aran Islands
Scottish Distillery tour
Loch Ness cruise
Subject to availability, you may choose your own dates.
$7,490 per person (group of 6 people)
$8,990 per person (group of 4 people)
$11,990 per person (group of 2 people)
All prices are in US dollars and for Superior Boutique Lodgings based on sharing a room for double occupancy,
For a full itinerary with details of all lodgings, and everything included in the tour price, please enquire.
This tour can be customized to your wishes or offered with 5 star Luxury Boutique. Simply call, or email us with your specifics and we'll plan a program that's right for you.
In this category, we have hand-picked
five-star guest houses or smaller luxury hotels. These lodgings are often family owned and offer a truly unique, authentic and welcome atmosphere where you are more likely to engage with local people than in a higher-end hotel. Some tours involve a mixture of both Superior and Luxury Boutique.
Through years of experience we have hand-picked luxury boutique hotels which are not only very comfortable in the traditional sense, but as importantly offer gourmet food and an ambience of lasting memory. All our hotel choices are of unique character, range from 4-star to 5-star, and are either downtown or enjoy a spectacular rural or village setting.
Our detailed offer to you will specify the hotels recommended.
Scotland & Ireland
For me, our trip to Scotland and Ireland couldn't have been better. Your careful research and planning made for a full, yet relaxing and absolutely delightful trip. We saw so many sights and beautiful natural landscape. I felt like we had all the time we wanted at each stop, were able to leave when we were done, and had flexibility to make extra stops. How refreshing compared to large group tours! And I felt safe at all times with your driving and with Noel in Ireland. Both of you made wonderful company without feeling at all intrusive.
The accommodations were just beautiful! Elegant, comfortable and relaxing, great service. The excellent food, choices, presentation and sevice were all just amazing. Looking back, I realize that, while we were busy and active all day, we weren't too exhausted to enjoy those fantastic dinners. I'm sure your traveling experience and planning, along with us being able to relax while we were driven, made that possible.
Thank you so much! I enthusiastically recommend Wanderlust tours.
Cynthia H. - Wisconsin