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Majestic Ireland

Friday, April 24th, 2009 | Posted in:

Majestic Ireland Tour

Enjoy a luxury 8 Day/7 Night Private Chauffeur Tour of Ireland from $1999.00* per person

The Majestic Ireland Tour visits Ireland’s most loved areas while going off the beaten track to discover its hidden gems. From once you arrive, you will be whisked off on your own private tour. Absorb the breath-taking landscapes and world renowned scenery – all of which you will view while touring daily from the comfort of a luxury vehicle & the service of your private driver/guide. Retreating to the finest accommodations each evening will allow you to reflect in blissful surroundings. The majestic Ireland Tour will send you home with a whirlwind of memories.

This tour includes:
Private transfer from Dublin Airport to your Dublin City centre accommodation
2 nights at The Shelbourne, Dublin – deluxe room
2 nights at Hayfield Manor, Cork – manor room
2 nights at The Europe, Killarney, Co. Kerry – golfside room
1 night at Dromoland Castle, Co. Clare – queen anne room
Service of a Private Driver/Guide for 5 Days in a luxury vehicle {Mercedes Viano or similar}
Private departure Shannon airport transfer on Day 8
Full Irish Breakfast Daily {7 breakfasts – not included on morning of arrival}
Entrance fee to Cliffs of Moher
Ireland at a Glimpse Guide offering 2 for 1 admission to over 70 entrances throughout Ireland
Offices in both Ireland and the USA, offering 24 hour coverage while traveling.
All Taxes & service charges

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Touring Itinerary:

DAY 1: ARRIVE DUBLIN

Cead Mile Failte – Welcome to Ireland! Arrive into Dublin Airport where a private driver will meet you & transfer you to your Dublin city hotel.

Enjoy the afternoon at leisure in Dublin, relaxing after your transatlantic flight.

Dublin is one of Europe’s most vibrant cities. Over a thousand years old, the turbulent history and rich traditions of the city have inspired writers, artists and musicians down the ages. Today, artists are still attracted by Dublin’s youthful enthusiasms and easy-going lifestyle and the city has become a thriving center of culture and enjoyment. The new wave of cafes and restaurants are meeting places for all ages while traditional Dublin pubs are rightly world-famous for their informal atmosphere and lively conversation. The city oozes atmosphere, not least in the heady scents that cling to it – the rich aroma of the hops being roasted in the Guinness brewery and the salty tang of the sea. Nighttime entertainment is a rich mix of world-class theater, concerts from classical to rock, jazz clubs, traditional music sessions and old-style cabaret. Dublin gets much of its energy from its young people and enjoys one of the best clubbing scenes in Europe. Above all, Dublin is a small city, where visitors can feel at home after even the shortest stay.

Overnight at the Shelbourne Hotel in Dublin.

DAY 2: DUBLIN CITY TOUR

This morning after a hearty Irish breakfast you can explore Dublin City in earnest….If you want to get your bearings, a good way to start is to hop on an open-top tour bus. If you’d prefer to explore on foot, there are lots of guided walks to choose from.

Most of the city’s main attractions are within easy walking distance of the city centre. You could start with Dublin’s oldest building, Christchurch Cathedral which dates back to 1030. Nearby St. Patrick’s Cathedral has a choir school that pre-dates Columbus discovering America. For Georgian Architecture at its best, take a stroll around Merrion Square with its gracious buildings and beautifully carved wooden doors.

You can visit Trinity College with its gorgeous Elizabethan quadrangles and its magnificent Library, home to the famous Book of Kells.

After, you can visit the Guinness Storehouse, Dublin’s must-see attraction. The guided tour ends, as it should, with a pint of ‘plain’ in the Gravity Bar with its bird’s-eye views of the city.

Temple Bar, the unofficial cultural quarter of the city, is a charming maze of cobblestone streets, houses galleries and theatres. The city has three impressive national museums and plenty of smaller ones where you learn about everything from Irish history to Irish whiskey, including the Dublin Writers Museum, which celebrates the city’s famous word smiths. And there’s a good sprinkling of both public and private art galleries. The Phoenix Park is the largest enclosed city park in Europe. Inside its gates you’ll find herds of wild deer, a wonderful zoo and the residence of the President of Ireland. And don’t miss Dublin’s oldest tourist attraction, the River Liffey itself. The Vikings liked it so much that they set up their first stronghold on its banks in the 10th century.

Overnight in Dublin.

DAY 3: DUBLIN-CORK

After breakfast this morning you will collected by your private driver/guide at your hotel to commence your private chauffeur driven tour of Ireland… You can stop at the National Stud Farm and Japanese Gardens in Kildare. Established in 1946, the Irish National Stud combines an active role in the development and promotion of Irish bloodstock with its role as one of the country’s major tourist attractions and it is the only Stud farm in Ireland open to the public. The Japanese Gardens at Tully were created between the years 1906-1910. Devised by Colonel William Hall-Walker (later Lord Wavertree), a wealthy Scotsman of a famous brewery family and laid out by the Japanese Eida and his son Minoru. The Gardens, planned to symbolise the ‘Life of Man’, are now of international renown and are acclaimed as the finest Japanese Gardens in Europe.

Continue via Kilkenny City – characterized by beautifully restored old buildings and winding shipways – is small and compact enough to explore on foot, yet full of fascinating historical buildings and contemporary shops, design galleries and restaurants. The ancient city of Kilkenny – from the Gaelic ‘Cill Ceannaigh’ – was named after a 6th century monk called Saint Canice. His memory lives on in the beautifully preserved St. Canice’s Cathedral built overlooking the city in the 13th century. The Normans arrived in the 12th century and their legacy remains in the superb and fully restored Kilkenny Castle and in the thriving and cosmopolitan merchant city. The 17th century was a time of great social and political turmoil for Kilkenny. It was the seat of national parliament for a six year period, the famous Oliver Cromwell invaded the city in 1650, and Kilkenny College was attended by such luminaries as Jonathan Swift and Bishop Berkeley. The 20th century saw Kilkenny’s rise as a creative center and the city is home to many craft and design shops, including the famous Kilkenny Design Center and Workshops located opposite Kilkenny Castle. Explore the side streets to find truly beautiful craft and design items made here in Kilkenny.

Continue onward this afternoon via Tipperary where you can stop to visit the Rock of Cashel-A spectacular group of Medieval buildings set on an outcrop of limestone in the Golden Vale including the 12th century round tower, High Cross and Romanesque Chapel, 13th century Gothic cathedral, 15th century Castle and the restored Hall of the Vicars Choral. Attractions include an audio-visual show and exhibitions.

Arrive into Cork City…. Check into Hayfield Manor in Cork City.

DAY 4: CORK CITY

This morning explore Cork City, named by Lonely Planet as one of Top 10 Cities in the World to visit in 2010. Steeped in history, Cork City is fast gaining a reputation as one of Europe’s hippest cities. Like Venice, the city is built upon water, and the city centre is built on an island in the River Lee, just upstream of Cork Harbour. The two channels of the River Lee which embrace the city centre are spanned by many bridges, and this gives the city a distinctive continental air. Exploring Cork is an enjoyable, multi-day pursuit. Ring the Shandon Bells in the 300 year-old tower of St. Anne’s Church, and marvel at the French Gothic spires of St. Finbarre’s Cathedral. You will discover unique shopping and dining options, including the famous English Market, with its stalls selling foods from all over the world. You may wish to visit Cork City Goal & learn about the social history of Ireland from 1824-1923.

In the afternoon, you can visit the famous Blarney Castle and the Blarney Stone, which has the traditional power of conferring eloquence on all who kiss it. The word ‘Blarney’ means pleasant talk, intended to deceive without offending. The battlements crowning the castle keep are typically Irish in form. Having climbed more than 100 steps, the famous Stone is set in the wall below the parapet, and to kiss it, one has to lean backwards from the parapet walk of the battlements. You can also visit the Blarney Woolen mills for some fine quality Irish produce.

Alternatively, drive to the other side of Cork Harbor, to the old town of Cobh (pernounced COVE). The American War of Independence put Cobh on the map. Napoleon kept it there and in the reign of Queen Victoria the town grew and prospered. It was as Queenstown that the port rose to prominence as a vital link in trans-Atlantic liner traffic in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Its name was changed again in 1920 and as Cobh it continues to serve as an important port of call for the majestic liners traveling the north Atlantic route. Emigrants departed from Cobh’s quays on board vessels of the great shipping lines, such as Cunard and White Star. The “Titanic” sailed from Cobh, never to touch land again. The Heritage Centre will tell these stories in a way that is fitting and sympathetic of the endeavor and trauma of the people who were involved.

Return to Cork City for overnight.

DAY 5: CORK TO KILLARNEY VIA SOUTHWEST COAST

Travel via the spectacular southwest coastline today. Your first stop can be in Kinsale, south of Cork City. Every visitor to Kinsale is captivated by its beautiful setting, with the long waterfront, narrow winding streets and Compass Hill rising sharply behind the town. The old fortifications of Charles Fort and James Fort guard the narrow entrance to Kinsale from the sea. Not surprisingly the town is renowned for its fresh seafood and gourmet cooking, as well as the numerous ‘cozy’ pubs. Proceed to Kinsale driving along country roads through gentle rolling farmland alongside the estuary of the River Bandon. Kinsale’s fame was established years ago as a quaint seaside town with a delicious restaurants and carefully preserved 18th century buildings. With the broad harbour and rich maritime past, Kinsale is a perfect town in which to stroll around during the stop on your tour. There are several small gift and souvenir shops in Kinsale where you can browse for that special momento of Ireland. Or, quaint side streets, colourfully painted houses and the unique Irish pubs are yours to capture on film as you wander around this picturesque and historic setting. The town has poignant memories of the sinking of the liner ‘Lusitania’ in 1915, off the Old Head of Kinsale, and it was in the courthouse the inquest into the incident took place.

Continue via Clonakilty, Skibbereen and onto Bantry Bay. You can visit Bantry House, home to the Shellswell-White family. Marvel at artifacts collected from worldwide travels and perhaps climb the 100 steps to the bell tower. Take a relaxing stroll through the gardens or just simply enjoy the view.

Continue onward to Killarney where you will overnight for the next 2 nights. Renowned for its beauty, famed for the splendor of its scenery, Killarney is one of the world’s best-loved tourist spots. Situated in the south western corner of Ireland, with its three famous lakes reflecting the ever changing skies above the great mountain range, Killarney has been the inspiration of poets and painters for many centuries. The three main lakes of Killarney occupy a broad valley stretching south between the mountains that surround them are all within the Killarney National Park.

Overnight at the Hotel Europe.Winner of Best Overall Hotel in Ireland, National Hospitality Awards 2013.

Guests of The Europe Hotel & Resort enjoy;
- Complimentary access to the active level of our luxury spa, ESPA at The Europe, including indoor/outdoor pools, heat experiences, ice fountain, relaxation areas and techno gym
- Complimentary Horse Riding on our Haflinger Horses
- Complimentary Indoor Tennis Courts
- Complimentary wifi in all areas of the hotel
- Fishing & Boating on the Lakes of Killarney from our private pier (3 pax per boat plus ghillie – approx €120 per boat)
- Heavily discounted green fees for the adjacent 2 Killarney Golf Courses

DAY 6: RING OF KERRY

Explore Ireland’s most famous peninsula today – The Ring of Kerry Tour takes you through spectacular coastal and mountainous scenery along the base of the highest mountain range in Ireland, The MacGillycuddy Reeks, and the highest peak being Carrantuohill rising 3,414 feet. The journey takes you through villages and towns depicting typical rural life in Ireland. As you descend into Killarney, fabulous views of the three Lakes of Killarney are afforded from ‘Ladies View’, named after Queen Victoria’s visit at the beginning century. Continue to Killarney’s National Park and the Muckross House Estate for a visit.

Muckross House, is a 19th century manor house, majestically situated on the shores of Muckross Lake. Now a major visitor centre, the House has two main themes, the environment of the National Park and the folklore of County Kerry in the 19th and 20th centuries. The gardens informal in size, are noted for their fine collection of rhododendrons and azaleas, which bloom in May/September, extensive water gardens and an outstanding rock garden of natural limestone.

Return to Killarney for overnight.

DAY 7: KILLARNEY TO DROMOLAND

Bid farewell to the Kingdom of Kerry and drive to Tarbert, taking the ferry to Kilimer to then enjoy the wonderful scenery of the coast of Clare before heading to Dromoland Castle.

You can stop off at the Cliffs of Moher, which are great dark sandstone cliffs (600ft) that rise sheer from the Atlantic for nearly 5 miles. Screaming sea birds throng the ledges or wheel and swoop about the waves. The best views are from O’Brien’s Tower, built in 1853 by Cornelius O’Brien.

Your final destination today is Dromoland Castle where you will spend your last night in Ireland. Located 13km from Shannon Airport. Stately halls, elegant public areas and beautifully furnished guestrooms are steeped in a timeless atmosphere that is unique to Dromoland. The international reputation for excellence is reflected in the award winning cuisine in the castle’s Earl of Thomond & The Fig Tree Restaurant in the Dromoland Golf and Country Club. A meticulously maintained 18 hole golf course, fishing, horse riding, clay shooting, health and beauty clinic and much more.

DAY 8: DEPART SHANNON

Depart to Shannon Airport – a private driver will transfer you for your flight back to the United States.

Slan Abhaile! (Safe Home!)

2014 PRICING:

Low Season 2014:
$2899.00 US$ / $3229.00 CAD$ Per Person Sharing {based on 2 people traveling}
$1999.00 US$ / $2199.00 CAD$ Per Person Sharing {based on 4 people traveling}
[January 1-March 31 & November 1-December 22]

Mid Season 2014:
$3049.00 US$ / $3399.00 CAD$ Per Person Sharing {based on 2 people traveling}
$2099.00 US$ / $2329.00 CAD$ Per Person Sharing {based on 4 people traveling}
[April 1-April 30 & October 1-October 31]

High Season 2014:
$3299.00 US$ / $3699.00 CAD$ Per Person Sharing {based on 2 people traveling}
$2299.00 US$ / $2569.00 CAD$ Per Person Sharing {based on 4 people traveling}
[May 1 - September 30]

*All prices are per person based on double occupancy.

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