Christmas in Ireland arrives in a swirl of light and laughter. Imagine world class shopping on Dublin's Grafton Street before retreating to idyllic Co. Kerry where the cherished traditions of centuries of Christmas live on in every glittering detail of our holiday festivities.
The actual tour starts @ 08:00 on Wednesday 23rd December. However, many of our guests will arrive a few days early to soak up the festive atmosphere in Dublin at leisure.
Check out the Christmas lights along Grafton Street and South Anne Street, buy flowers at Harry Street and window shop amazing jewellery along Johnson's Court. View the beautiful crib and magical candles at St. Teresa's Church (Clarendon Street) and the live animal crib at The Mansion House, Dawson Street.
You'll find amazing Irish gifts at Avoca (Suffolk Street), Celtic Whiskey Shop (Dawson Street) and Sheridan's Cheesemongers (South Anne Street). Sip on a hot chocolate from Butler's Cafe (Wicklow Street) if the air feels a little frosty along the way.
...and when your legs are tired and your wallet is empty pull up a stool at a great pub. O'Donoghoe's (Merrion Row), Kehoe's (South Anne Street, O'Neill's (Suffolk Street) and The Temple Bar (Temple Bar) are always decorated traditionally and ooze warmth!
Dublin - Rock of Dunamase - English Markets - Blarney Castle - Killarney
Pick up 8:00am at Paddy's Palace in Dublin.
We then make our way to the midlands of Ireland. We visit the beautiful Rock of Castle Dunamase, steeped in Irish legend in the Golden Vale, Ireland's finest agricultural land with its rolling fields and pastures fresh. In the afternoon we are heading for the world renowned Blarney Castle. Here we spend plenty of time (2h) visiting the Castle, and kissing the Blarney Stone endowing us with the gift of eloquent speech (gift of the gab) for 7 years. Surrounded by beautiful and majestic gardens, we may also take the time to visit the Blarney Woolen mills, the world's largest Irish shop
Tonight our overnight destination at Killarney
"It's Christmas Eve Babe!" Experience a Christmas Eve like no other, exploring Ireland's Wild Atlantic coastline
Today we embark on the world famous Ring of Kerry. The day begins with a horse and cart ride through Killarney National Park (optional) or horseback ride through the park for the energetic and adventurous (optional). Next it's off on our journey that combines emerald pastures and villages with jaw dropping views of cliffs, mountains and ancient pagan forts. Highlights include vistas of the Skellig rocks, and the beautiful town of Waterville once home of the legendary Charlie Chaplin. After lunch we find ourselves in the homeland of Daniel O'Connell, known as the father of the nation and the man who brought Catholic emancipation to Ireland in the early 1800s. Our afternoon is packed with many highlights including Moll's Gap, Ladies View, Leprechaun Crossing, Killarney National Park, Lakes of Killarney, Torc Waterfall, Muckross House and much more.
Tonight we stay in your very own Irish pub, the Randy Leprechaun on the Dingle Peninsula. Here we mix with the locals, and enjoy the characteristics of a genuine Irish small-village, away from the hustle and bustle. Pull up a stool by the fire or choose to dance the night away!
Christmas breakfast - Tour of Dingle Peninsula - Slea Head - Christmas Swim - 5 Course Christmas Banquet Dinner..
We wake up on Christmas morning as snow falls outside (fingers crossed!). You will then gather around for a hearty full Irish Christmas Breakfast to set you up for the day. We will then tour around beautiful Dingle Slea Head drive is considered by many photographic magazines as the most beautiful peninsula in the world, and was recently voted the number one area for dramatic shots. The road winds around through Gaelic speaking Corca Dhuibhne beginning at Ventry beach passing by the 4000 year old beehive huts and onwards to Dunquin with amazing views of the great Blasket Island and the Sleeping Giant. The peninsula has fabulous beaches in Coonenoole and Clogherhead where the film Far and Away was shot. And of course the Christmas Swim - Be ready to brace the waters as we work up an appetite for our Christmas Dinner.
We then return to the Inspiration Lodge for our Christmas Feast! This is a 5 course meal and maybe a nice glass (or two!) of wine to help wash down all the delicious food (Cost of wine not included).
Adare - Cliffs of Moher - Doolin - The Burren - Wild Atlantic Way
We enjoy a coastal drive along the shores of Galway Bay. This dramatic road ensures we see amazing views of the Atlantic Ocean. This drive is part of the "Wild Atlantic Way" which is a driving route that follows the entire West Coast of Ireland.
We arrive at the world famous Cliffs of Moher, one of the world's great natural attractions where you can enjoy a relaxed walk, and breathtaking views. SAVE a whopping 9 euro entry fee! We are proud to be a tour company that includes the amazing Atlantic Edge Exhibition!
Atlantic Edge is the exciting interpretive exhibition at the Cliffs of Moher and its award-winning new Visitor Experience. Housed in an innovative underground building a huge domed cave contains images, exhibits, displays and experiences that will delight young and old alike. We stop at the Cliffs for 1,5 h.
We pass through the beautiful landscape of the Doolin region, with uninterrupted views of the Aran Islands and Doolin Harbour. We will take a stop in Doolin, with the time to enjoy lunch for those who are hungry. There is a traditional carvery lunch available for those who would like to enjoy local food (not included). We make our way through the Burren - one of the famous landscapes of Ireland! It is famous for its Limestone Rock, as far as the eye can see, and reaching down to the sea shore. We will stop at the "Mini Cliffs" which are a great site to experience this area, and enjoy the coast. We then head off on our short journey through the midlands back to Dublin inspired by a wonderful 4 day experience around Southern Ireland.