From the bustling capital of Dublin to quaint seaside villages to historic Northern Ireland, you’ll see it all on this Mayflower holiday featuring Irish history, music, dance, cuisine, scenery and architecture. This ‘best of’ tour lets you experience 6,000 years of history spread across the dales, valleys, cliffs and castles of Dublin, Killarney, Co Mayo, and Northern Ireland.
1 Depart the USA
Depart the USA on your overnight flight to Dublin, Ireland.
2 Dublin, Ireland
Upon arrival, you’ll be met by a Mayflower Cruises & Tours representative and transferred to your hotel. The remainder of the day is at leisure to become acquainted with the area.
A guided panoramic orientation tour of this capital city awaits. See the River Liffey, St. Stephen’s Green and travel along O’Connell Street with its monument to Daniel O’Connell and other notable figures from Ireland’s turbulent past. Pass the General Post Office, site of rebel headquarters in the 1916 Easter Rising. Stop at Trinity College and see the Book of Kells, the famous hand-illuminated gospel manuscript. Visit St Patrick’s Cathedral, one of the few remaining buildings from medieval times, and see its impressive altar and stained-glass windows.
After free time for lunch, enjoy a special treat with an included tour of the Guinness Storehouse. The bird’s-eye views of Dublin from the 7th-floor Gravity Bar, as you sample a pint, is a perfect end to the day of touring! Meal: B
Venture out with your local guide along the Irish Food Trail to get to the heart of what it means to be Irish! This walking tour is steeped in history, which you will hear as you learn about Dublin’s heritage while meeting and dining with locals. At each stop along the walking trail, sample some hearty, Irish cuisine and soak up the local folklore.
The afternoon is at leisure to pursue independent interests. This evening, join in the merriment as you dine in an 18th-century pub and enjoy a traditional show featuring Irish dance, music and song.
Meals: B, D
5 Dublin – Killarney
It’s time to depart Dublin via coach for the quaint town of Killarney. Travel through the scenic countryside and stop in the village of Blarney with an included visit to Blarney Castle. Climb to the top and kiss the Blarney Stone. See if the “gift of gab” is bestowed upon you! Continue to Killarney, “the Jewel of Ireland”, with a background of sparkling lakes, deep forests and jagged misty mountains. A brief panoramic orientation tour introduces you to this lively little town.
Dinner is included at the hotel. Meals: B, D
6 Killarney / Ring of Kerry
Fall in love with the charm of Killarney during a morning Jaunting Cart ride through Killarney National Park. Your Jarvey (driver) will keep you entertained with tales about the history, folklore and beauty of the area. This afternoon is spent on an excursion along a portion of the Ring of Kerry – the most famous and panoramic route in Ireland. With its diverse scenery of mountains, lakes and awe-inspiring views you’ll see why words just can’t describe its beauty. After a full day of scenery and adventure, the evening is at leisure. Meal: B
7 Killarney – Galway
Leaving Killarney, depart for Galway with adventures along the way. Stopping in the picturesque village of Adare, be transported back in time as you stroll through the quaint streets with thatched-roofed cottages and cozy shops. During the visit to Bunratty Castle & Folk Park, see what life was like in the 19th century. The recreated village showcases houses, shops and businesses in a typical rural setting.
Continue to the Cliffs of Moher – a breathtaking sight where nature’s wildness and spectacular beauty meet. Admire the grandeur of the Cliffs, soaring from the Atlantic Ocean to a height of 700 feet. Arriving in Galway early evening, check-in to the hotel and enjoy an included dinner. Meals: B, D
Begin the day with a cruise of Killary Fjord where scenic views abound. Hills rise steeply from the silvery sea, shifting light and shadows create colorful effects on the peaks and valleys, and deep green fields contrast with heather bogs. Return to dry land for a visit to Kylemore Abbey, the only home of the Benedictine nuns in Ireland. Discover the rich history of the Abbey, set amongst postcard-perfect scenery in the
majestic Connemara. Meal: B
9 Galway – Derry, Northern Ireland
Departing Galway, the journey into Northern Ireland begins with the scenic landscapes of County Sligo and touring along the way. In Drumcliffe, see the final resting place of the famous Irish poet William Butler Yeats. This peaceful churchyard, set at the foot of Benbulben Mountain, has the remains of a round tower and 11th-century high cross.
Continue to Donegal for a visit of the 15th-century castle with period furnishings and detailing the history of the O’Donnell clan. Crossing into Northern Ireland, arrive in the city of Derry for dinner and overnight. Meals: B, D
Discovery of Northern Ireland begins with a guided walking tour of Derry before visiting the Inishowen Peninsula, the northernmost point on the island of Ireland. With its remote, rugged landscape of castle ruins, towers and ancient churches, along with Celtic crosses and pagan monuments, the sights along the peninsula weave a colorful tapestry of an earlier age in this timeless place. Return to Derry for an evening at leisure and overnight. Meal: B
11 Derry – Belfast
Today’s highlight is the journey to Belfast along the Giant’s Causeway
, Northern Ireland’s most famous site. Considered the Eighth Wonder of the World, and the only World Heritage Site in Northern Ireland, this astonishing complex of basalt columns is home to many fairies and folklore tales! Hear the myths of the giant Finn McCool and the legends surrounding this mystical place. The journey ends with arrival into Belfast where you are free to explore on your own. Meal: B
12 Belfast – Dublin, Ireland
A guided panoramic visit of the city showcases the Grand Opera House, Victorian and Edwardian buildings, an authentic working-class community and the Falls Road area. See the murals on almost every gabled wall which tell stories of the city’s violent past and its belief for the future.
Visit Titanic Belfast
where the story of the ill-fated ship is told from her conception, to the construction and launch to her catastrophic demise. Interpretive and interactive galleries bring the history of the Titanic
to life. Depart Belfast and return to Dublin, enjoying the final evening and farewell dinner at the Dunboyne Castle Hotel. Meals: B, D
13 Dublin / USA
Filled with wonderful memories of the history, scenery and people of the Emerald Isle and Northern Ireland, transfer to Dublin Airport for your flight home. Meal: B
Itinerary is subject to change.