Classic Ireland

Ardmore, Kerry, Clare, Ashford Castle, Dublin

From $6600 Per person in low season

Per person for 11 nights based on two adults traveling together, and including all accommodation on a bed and breakfast basis (all meals at Ballyfin), luxury transportation in a Mercedes Viano, the services of your driver guide and most entrance charges.

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At a Glance

  • Experience the very best of Ireland from East to West in authentic style

  • Discover the incredible landscapes of Kerry and the Burren

  • Enjoy the vibrant culture of Dublin

  • The services of a top private driver-guide have been included throughout.

  • A great option for both couples and families

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Best time to Visit

Good time to visit

Average time to visit

It is very difficult to predict the weather in Ireland - in the summer from May to late September is generally seen as the most pleasant time to visit. Rainfall is difficult to predict - but Ireland does not receive as much as many are led to believe! In the winters, temperatures do fall, but there is nothing better than finding a remote pub with a roaring fire to sit beside after a long walk in the country.

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This suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something bespoke to you. To start planning your vacation

Itinerary

Including many of Ireland’s most quintessential sights and experiences from Dublin to the bewitching beauty of Ireland’s west, this privately guided luxury journey makes, we think, an authentic, stylish and enchanting introduction to the Emerald Isle.

  1. Days 1-2: Dublin City Centre

    Arriving in Dublin, you will be met by our superb team on the ground and driven into town for two nights at a central Dublin hotel. In this fairest of cities, your guide will take you to explore the loveliest parts, including St. Stephen's Green, Trinity College with its famous illuminated manuscript The Book of Kells, and its most beautiful Georgian Squares, not forgetting of course the chance to sample a pint or two of the national drink; Guinness. If you'd like to explore around Dublin, then Glendalough in the Wicklow Mountains and the Neolithic monuments of Newgrange and Knowth in the Boyne Valley are both very rewarding.

    Accommodation: The Merrion (2 nights)

  2. Days 3-5: Ardmore, Co. Waterford, Ireland

    Leaving Dublin, you'll travel by road in considerable comfort down to the small town of Ardmore in County Waterford on Ireland's southern coast, where we've suggested wonderful Cliff House Hotel as your stay - a luxury Relais & Chateaux property sensationally set on a cliff-top overlooking the Irish Sea. In addition to enjoying Michelin-star dining and spa pampering, you can explore the coast in a sea kayak, go surfing and sailing, or gallop a horse along the beach, while keen golfers have a number of world-class nearby courses to choose from. If you'd prefer to take things a little easier, explore one of Ireland’s finest round towers, shop for Waterford crystal or take a guided foraging trip for edible plants along the shoreline. Between October and March, the hotel's resident marine biologist offers cliff-top walks to spot dolphins, porpoises and fin whales.

    Accommodation: The Cliff House Hotel (2 nights)

  3. Days 5-7: Killorglin, Co. Kerry, Ireland

    Continuing on through County Cork, you'll have a chance to kiss the Blarney stone at Blarney Castle, have a gourmet seafood lunch in Ireland's gastronomic Mecca of Kinsale and explore the centuries-old English Market in Cork, before arriving into Kerry. Staying at Ard Na Sidhe, one of Ireland's finest country house hotels, you'll be able to explore the lovely Dingle Peninsula with your guide, take a boat out to beautiful Great Blasket Island and learn about the unique Gaelic-speaking community renowned for its literature, and of course follow the classic Ring of Kerry.

    Accommodation: Ard Na Sidhe Country House (2 nights)

  4. Days 7-9: Ballyvaughan, Co. Clare, Ireland

    Heading north, you'll pass through Limerick en route to County Clare with its extraordinary limestone landscape, the Burren. Staying at the small, stylish country retreat of Gregans Castle, the secrets of the Burren will slowly be revealed as you explore its prehistoric dolmens, fabulous wildflowers and holy wells. The remote Aran Islands, themselves a continuation of the Burren, make an absolutely wonderful excursion if you have an extra day to spare, while an evening stroll along the top of the huge Cliffs of Moher offers extraordinary views and thousands of seabirds wheeling beneath you.

    Accommodation: Gregans Castle Hotel (2 nights)

  5. Days 9-11: Galway, Ireland

    Continuing on, you'll have a chance to stop for lunch in beautiful Galway City before heading into the wild and remote mountains and lakes of Connemara. This is truly Ireland at its most magnificent, and you'll meet Gaelic-speaking crofters and explore atmospheric Kylemore Abbey before you arrive at the sumptuous Ashford Castle on the shores of Lough Corrib. Parts of the castle date to the 13th century, and its rich history, idyllic lakeside position and five-star service make it a wonderful base in Connemara. We'd highly recommend enjoying the pampered luxury that Ashford Castle offers, and perhaps partaking in one of the estate activities such as learning the noble art of falconry horse riding or hanging a line from a boat on Lough Corrib.

    Accommodation: Ashford Castle (2 nights)

  6. Days 11-12: Dublin City Centre

    Returning back to Dublin, you'll be able to explore the evocative sixth-century monastic complex of Clonmacnoise en route before enjoying a final night at The Merrion. A fine way to bid goodbye to Ireland is to let us arrange a private dinner for you with a seannachie or Irish story-teller, who will entertain you with folk tales and legends that stretch back into dim mist of Irish history.

    Accommodation: The Merrion (1 nights)

Experiences

  • A Visit to the Blasket Islands

    The Blasket Islands lie a short way off the most westerly tip of the Dingle Peninsula in County Kerry. Boasting a disproportionate literary heritage, magnificent coastal scenery and peace, a visit to the Blasket Islands is Ireland at its magical best.

  • Blarney Castle

    Famed for its Blarney Stone, which by kissing will bestow the gift of eloquence, Blarney Castle was built over six hundred years ago by Cormac McCarthy, one of Ireland's greatest chieftains. But don't forget to explore the castle and gardens too.

  • Clay Shooting & Archery

    Experience this Irish tradition, followed by kings and lords for centuries. Test your skill against a bolting rabbit, springing teal or wily woodcock. Or aim for the bull's eye on an archery target.

  • Cliffs of Moher

    Soaring over 700 feet, the Cliffs of Moher are a magnificent 8-kilometer stretch of sea cliffs along the Atlantic coast of Clare. Wonderful views and fabulous seabird colonies make the Cliffs of Moher a must-see natural attraction in the west of Ireland.

  • Clonmacnoise Abbey

    Drive the beautiful route to Clonmacnoise, an early Christian site founded by St. Ciarán in the mid-6th century on the eastern bank of the River Shannon.

  • Cooking Demonstration at Ballymaloe House

    One of the highlights of a stay at Ballymaloe House, a culinary class at its famed cookery school is sure to inspire you. Under expert hands you will learn some of the secrets of the Slow Cooking movement, and have fabulous recipes to take back with you.

  • Discover Cong

    Cong is a village on the borders of Counties Mayo and Galway. Situated on an island formed by a number of streams, Cong is famous for its medieval abbey and as the location for the Oscar-winning movie The Quiet Man, starring John Wayne.

  • Fishing Lough Corrib

    From fly fishing lessons to half and full day trips, enjoy an exciting fishing experience at Lough Corrib aboard 19ft hand-crafted wooden boats.

  • Glendalough

    Glendalough, in the heart of the beautiful Wicklow Mountains, is a wooded valley with two mysterious lakes, famed for its charismatic early seventh-century monastic complex and round tower. You can also enjoy beautiful walks in the woods and mountains.

  • Heywood Lutyens Gardens

    Set among 50 acres of formal gardens and exquisitely romantic landscaped lakes and woodland just outside Dublin, Heywood is one of Ireland’s great gardens. Any garden lover staying in Dublin should make a special point of visiting Heywood.

  • Horse-drawn carriage ride in Dublin

    The charming carriages line the edge of St Stephen's Green and the chatty drivers and their sturdy horses make for a relaxing way to sightsee.

  • Magical Skellig Michael

    Skellig Michael, a towering sea crag rising from the wild Atlantic Ocean around eight miles off the coast of Kerry, is a mind-blowing destination whose stark spirituality and skirling seabird colonies will live in your mind long after you have returned.

  • Private Hawk Walk

    Be amazed and learn about the ancient art of falconry with a truly hands on experience.

  • Private Walking Tour of the Burren

    The Burren landscape, with its unusual limestone rock formations, fascinating prehistoric archaeology and renowned flora and fauna, provides a spectacular terrain for a guided walk. Explore its secrets on a half-day walking tour with your private guide.

  • Rock of Cashel

    Sometimes known as Cashel of the Kings, the Rock of Cashel in County Tipperary is a spectacular collection of medieval buildings set on an outcrop of limestone rock.

  • Teelings Whiskey Distillery

    Teelings Distillery is Dublin's first new whiskey distillery in over a century and currently the only one in the city. Visit Teelings and taste three award-winning whiskeys for yourself.

  • The Aran Islands

    Situated off Ireland’s west coast, the Aran Islands offer spectacular limestone pavements, awesome coastal scenery and a traditional way of life that is still very much alive. A day trip or an overnight stay will live with you long after you’ve returned.

  • The Beara Peninsula

    Located mostly in County Cork, the Beara Peninsula is the third major 'ring' in Ireland's southwest after Kerry and Dingle. Here you can escape the hordes and find in its tiny coastal communities captivating views and Ireland at its peaceful best.

  • The English Market

    With its mix of traditional Cork fare and exciting new foods from overseas, along with some great banter at its mainly family-run stalls, the English Market in Cork will charm anyone with an interest in food.

  • The Gardens at Birr Castle

    The award-winning gardens at Birr Castle in Offaly are one of the most extraordinary gardens in Ireland. With abundant rare plants, the world’s tallest box hedges, and plenty of kid-friendly activities, a visit to Birr Castle makes a superb day out.

  • The Irish House Party

    Located just ten minutes from central Dublin in a beautiful 18th Century townhouse, The Irish House Party is a truly unique Dublin experience. Dine on delicious Irish specialties before being entertained by the best musicians and dancers in the business.

  • The Marsh Library

    The Marsh Library, located next to St Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin, is an amazing haunted library that, apart from being one of Ireland's most important Enlightenment book collections, makes a great place to take the kids on a rainy day.

  • The Ring of Connemara

    The Ring of Connemara is a circuit taking you through the wild beauty of Galway and Mayo. Famed for its lakes, mountains and rivers, the breathtaking scenery and isolated crofts and abbeys provide a stunning glimpse of rural Ireland.

  • The Ring of Kerry

    Snaking more than 120 scenically captivating miles in a circular route around the Iveragh Peninsula in southwest Ireland’s County Kerry, The Ring of Kerry takes in rugged and verdant coastal landscapes, lakes and mountains and charming seaside villages.

  • Trinity College & The Book of Kells

    Trinity College is Dublin's oldest university and its cobbled front square and collection of historic buildings is a must see. The magnificent Old Library building houses the Book of Kells - a 9th-century gospel manuscript famous throughout the world.

  • Visit The Guinness Storehouse

    No trip to Dublin would be complete without a trip to visit the famous brewery of the black stuff. This historical building spread over seven floors brings to life the rich heritage of Guinness.

Location

Ardmore, Kerry, Clare, Ashford Castle, Dublin

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This suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something bespoke to you. To start planning your vacation

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