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  • £309.00 From per person
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4 Day – Irish Castles, Gardens and Manor Houses

Fortify your knowledge of Ireland on this tour of gorgeous castles, sumptuous gardens, and stately manor houses. Medieval Ireland was a battleground. The Vikings plundered, the Normans raided, and the Gaels were steadfast in their resistance. So it’s no surprise the gorgeous green hills of Ireland are packed with impressively fortified castles and magnificent manor houses.

On this tour, you explore the remains of these castles, travel through millennia of Irish culture, relive the history defining battles, and enjoy relaxing walks through splendid gardens and grand houses.

Join this tour and experience the monumental buildings and achievements of Ireland’s ancient past.




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Prices

  • £309.00 From per person

Enquire about this tour

Tour Highlights

  • Birr Castle Gardens and the Great Telescope - Explore the lush gardens and discover one of the 19th century's greatest scientific instruments, The Great Telescope
  • Trim Castle - Stare in wonder at the largest Anglo-Norman castle in Ireland, the famous location for the film ‘Braveheart’
  • The Village of Adare - ‘Ireland’s Prettiest Village’ - A stunning ‘chocolate box’ collection of thatched houses and historic buildings
  • Clonmacnoise Monastery - This 1,500 year old abbey was once a major centre of religion, learning, craftsmanship
  • Strokestown Park House and Gardens - Uncover the secrets of the 19th century famine in the incredible grounds and house museum
  • Fermanagh Lakelands and Florence Court - Pass along these wonderful waterways and sweep through the grounds of this beautiful 18th century house
  • St. Columba’s Church in Kells - Admire the beauty and brutality of the past at this church built on the site of a ruined monastery
Adare
64°
partly cloudy
48% humidity
wind: 7mph N
H 65 • L 37
77°
Wed
70°
Thu
71°
Fri
71°
Sat
72°
Sun
Weather from Yahoo!

Tour Itinerary

Day 1 - Birr Castle and Adare

Explore the grounds of the neo-classical Emo Court House and peer back into the past at Birr Castle and the Great Telescope then snap a photo or two amongst the thatched roofs and ancient stone buildings of Adare.

You depart Dublin and travel west through the Midlands to Emo Court House, an 18th century neoclassical mansion set in stunning parkland and gardens. There’s time for a stroll in the grounds and refreshments in the excellent tea rooms.

Continuing west through the Slieve Bloom Mountains, you arrive at the unique Birr Castle. You can learn about the bygone age of scientific discovery at the Great Telescope, the largest in the world for over 70 years. The castle is a private residence but the substantial and beautiful grounds are open to the public, as are the excellent exhibitions.

The tour continues south to the twin towns of Killaloe, Co Clare and Ballina, Co Tipperary – situated on the banks of the River Shannon – where you will spend your first night.

Day 2 - Clonmacnoise and Strokestown Park

Connect with your spirituality at Clonmacnoise, home to an early Christian site filled with stone crosses and legends and delve into the tragic history of the Great Famine at the Georgian mansion house of Strokestown Park

Begin the day travelling through the counties of Tipperary, Offaly and Roscommon, and experience the best of rural Ireland. You pass along the shores of Lough Derg on the way to Killaloe.

A scenic drive from here brings you to Clonmacnoise – an early Christian site in a beautiful setting on the banks of the River Shannon.

You head through Athlone and then northwards alongside Lough Ree to the grandeur of Strokestown Park.This great mansion house sits in stunning grounds and hosts a fascinating museum about the great famine.

From here, you drive a short distance to the bustling town of Carrick-on-Shannon, your home for the next two nights.

Day 3 - County Leitrim and County Fermanangh

Cross into Northern Ireland and visit the immaculate gardens and grand house of Florence Court and rove the markets and stalls in the lakeside town of Enniskillen then gaze in wonder across the picturesque Lakelands District.

A relaxed day exploring the Lakelands in County Leitrim awaits and County Fermanangh in Northern Ireland.

You visit Florence Court, one the grandest 18th century country houses in Ireland and a former home of the Earls of Enniskillen. The lush parkland and majestic grounds are the perfect opportunity for photos.

You stop at the nearby historic market town of Enniskillen, where you can view the impressive 600 year old castle atop the banks of the River Erne.

Then we head back to Carrick-on-Shannon. The rest of the day is yours to explore.

Day 4 - Kells and Trim Castle

Roam the monastic site where the Book of Kells was discovered and relive the famous battles of “Braveheart” at Castle Trim, the largest Anglo-Norman castle in Ireland.

In the morning you have a chance to take a lovely stroll through the hotel grounds. We then head to the heritage town of Kells and the famous monastic site where the Book of Kells was created. This phenomenal ancient treasure exhibits the height of medieval design and craftsmanship. You have time to take a leisurely lunch amongst the historic sites of St Columba’s Church and the traditional High Crosses.

After lunch, you travel through the flourishing countryside to Trim Castle, the setting for the movie “Braveheart”. Relive the scenes from the film as you explore the massive three storied keep, a structure so large that it took over 30 years to build.

Weather permitting; you head for the ancient Hill of Tara, the traditional seat of more than 140 Kings of Ireland.

From this regal site, you head back to Dublin.

Adare
64°
partly cloudy
48% humidity
wind: 7mph N
H 65 • L 37
77°
Wed
70°
Thu
71°
Fri
71°
Sat
72°
Sun
Weather from Yahoo!

Important Information

  • Discounts for students, seniors over 60, and children between 5 and 15 (unfortunately, we don’t carry children under 5 years old).
  • Pack your waterproof clothing and walking shoes.
  • One 15 kilogram bag per person.

Tour Inclusions

  • Transport in a 16 seat Mercedes mini-coach.
  • Air conditioning as standard.
  • The stories and services of a driver-guide.

Departure Information

  • Departs 09.00 – Opposite the Kilkenny Shop, Nassau St, Dublin.
  • Returns 19.00 approx.

Accommodation

  • We try to reserve accommodation that’s no more than a 20-minute walk from the town centre.
  • We regularly check our accommodation suppliers to ensure they reach a certain standard.
  • The prices below are for guidance only.

B&B (Bed and Breakfast) Standard

  • The toilet and showering facilities are shared with at least one other room in the house, and the price includes breakfast.
  • The cost is between €30.00 – €65.00 per night.

B&B En/suite

  • The showering and toilet facilities are private, and breakfast is included in the price.
  • The expected cost for a room, based on two people sharing, will be between €40.00 – €50.00 per person per night.
  • The expected cost for a single room will be between €45 – €60 per night.

Hotels

  • Hotels have a bar or restaurant and provide evening meals.
  • Breakfast is included in the price.
  • The expected cost of Hotel is between €55 – €65 per person per night.

Hostels

  • A hostel consists of dormitory rooms with 4 to 16 bunk beds.
  • The bathroom facilities are a short distance from the dorm room.
  • Kitchen facilities are equipped so you can make your own meals.
  • The cost is between €20 – €25 per person per night.
  • Please note that SYHA hostels only offer same gender dorms.
  • Some independent hostels will offer mixed rooms (males and females together).


FAQ’s

What meals are included?

Breakfast is included on all overnight tours.  Lunches are not included, unless otherwise stated.  Evening meals are included when stated on the tour itinerary.  On tours of seven days or more, generally fifty percent of dinners are included.  Please check the itinerary page for exact details.

Where does the trip depart from?

Each UK trip will have a dedicated pick up point in central London.  Shorter duration trips will normally depart from Victoria Coach Station, with longer duration trips leaving from the London Reception Centre, near to Waterloo train station.  Departure points will be confirmed before booking a tour.

Can I get picked up from my hotel?

Pick up from hotels is not possible.  You will need to make your own way to the departure point.  However some tours do have a designated hotel departure, which you can stay in prior to the trip.  Please ask at time of booking for departure points and we can direct you to local hotels.

Are entrance fees included?

Entrance fees are included where specified on the itinerary.

Can I pay in dollars?

All tours are quoted and charged in pounds sterling, but you can pay using your local card and currency.  We will debit the card in pounds sterling and your bank will use their exchange rate at that time to deduct the amount in your local currency.

What time does the trip leave and return?

Departure times will vary depending on the itinerary.  European tours departing from London will usually leave between 05.00am and 07.00am.  Multi day UK tours will leave between 06.00am and 07:30am.  Day trips will depart between 07.00am and 09.00am.  European and worldwide tours that start in an overseas city will have a welcome reception on day one of the tour which is usually around 18.00pm.

Return times vary depending on the itinerary.  All the full day coach tours should be finished by no later than 19.00pm, traffic permitting.  The train tours return between 20.00pm and 22.00pm.  Longer duration trips will return between 16.00pm and 19.00pm.  All times will be confirmed at time of booking.

Is this a definite/guaranteed departure?

A definite departure is guaranteed to operate for that given departure date.  A trip that is not yet designated a definite departure is not yet guaranteed to operate based on current booking numbers.  If a trip and departure date you are interested in is not yet definite, do not let this discourage you from booking.  The more paid passengers received, the odds of the trip operating increase.  In the slim case that the operator withdraw a trip you are booked on due to a lack of numbers, you are entitled to a full refund of any funds already paid towards the tour, or if flexible with your time, we can move you onto another departure.

Who travels on these tours, who else is booked?

Whilst we can not confirm exactly who else is booked on a tour, we can guarantee you will be travelling with fellow liked minded travelers who share a passion for travel, fun, adventure and discovery.  All tours will be run by English speaking guides and age ranges will vary.  The beauty of taking a guided holiday is you’ll have the opportunity to meet and travel with people from all over the globe.

Are transfers included from the airport?

In general, if you are joining or departing your guided holiday on the first or last day, return transfers between the airport and hotel are included (excludes itineraries starting and/or ending in London).  You’ll find specific information on the itinerary’s page.

What optional excursions can I do and can I book them now?

Optional experiences are available on some tours.  These are activities that are not automatically included, but offered during your trip to enhance your travel experience.  These are all bookable whilst on the tour via your tour guide/travel director.  These are payable by cash or card.



Our Most Popular Essentials



There are so many and we cater for everyone so it may be a case of a leisurely out of London trip to Stonehenge or you may want the buzz and excitement of a theatre tour of London – all the glitz and glamour is there. Out of London, we offer all sorts of adventures: Roman Baths, Shakespeare country, the Royal Pavilion, Brighton – you name it. Same with London – we don’t just do the round London tours – we can take you to Kew Gardens or we can take you on an expedition on the roof of the O2 Dome to the platform at the top offering spectacular views.

So we offer Out of London, Around London, Theatre and Hotels and then there are the spectacular Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day tours – what a way to celebrate the fun season.