The Ireland Experience Self-Drive Tour 8 Days
7 Night Tour From $978 pps
This tour starts and ends in Dublin but can be adjusted to suit other arrival points such as Shannon.
Attractions on This Tour
Dublin Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour, Dublin City
The Dublin Tour has been carefully designed to give you the freedom to explore and experience the history and culture of Dublin at your leisure. You will get the opportunity to visit all the main Dublin attractions along the route and these include Dublin Zoo, St Patrick’s cathedral and Trinity College (home of the Book of Kells).
Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin City
At the heart of the city of Dublin for almost a thousand years, Christ Church cathedral has a rich cultural history which can be traced from the Vikings and the Anglo-Normans to the present. Its diverse architectural and sculptural heritage remains a source of fascination to visitors and pilgrims alike who enter this hallowed space.
Dublin Writers Museum, Dublin City
Dublin is famous as a city of writers and literature, and the Dublin Writers Museum is an essential visit for anyone who wants to discover, explore, or simply enjoy Dublin's immense literary heritage. At the Writers Museum, Dublin’s literary celebrities from the past three hundred years are brought to life through their books, letters, portraits and personal items.
National Museum of Ireland - Decorative Arts and History, Dublin City
The National Museum of Ireland – Decorative Arts & History Collins Barracks was opened in 1997 and is housed in former army barracks. At this museum you'll find Irish haute couture garments, furniture, silver, jewelry, ceramics, and exhibitions exploring Irish military history, including the 1916 Easter Rising.
Guinness Storehouse, Dublin City
At Guinness Storehouse you’ll discover all there is to know about the world’s most famous beer. A dramatic story that begins 250 years ago and ends…where else - in the Gravity® bar with a complimentary pint of the black stuff.
Trinity College and the Book of Kells, Dublin City
Trinity College is Ireland's oldest university. It was founded by Queen Elizabeth I in 1592. Due to its picturesque setting and the famous people connected with it - Oscar Wilde studied here - Trinity College is one of the city's main tourist attractions.
Arlington Hotel Irish night, Dublin City
The Arlington hotel is a three star hotel and is located in the centre of Dublin City. The hotel hosts a regular Irish dancing show every night of the week with additional afternoon shows during the weekend.This dinner and show offer serves up a combination of excellent food, top class hospitality and traditional entertainment that is sure to leave an impression. The Arlington Hotel's Irish dancer and musicians hail from the world famous Celtic Rhythm troupe.
Phoenix Park, Dublin City
The Phoenix Park at 707 hectares (1752 acres) is a historic landscape of international importance and one of the largest designed landscapes in any European city. It was originally established as a Royal deer park in the 17th century. The Park is open 24 hrs a day, 7 days a week, all year round and is home to Áras an Uachtaráin, the President’s House.
Kilmainham Jail, Dublin City
Built in 1796, Kilmainham Jail has an unique place in Irish History and was where for more than 100 years those who fought against the English occupation of Ireland were imprisoned and where many of them died, It is a sombre, even chilling, place to visit, but absolutely fascinating.
Bru na Boinne Visitor Centre, County Meath
Newgrange was constructed over 5,000 years ago (about 3,200 BC), making it older than Stonehenge in England and the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. It was built during the Neolithic or New Stone Age by a farming community that prospered on the rich lands of the Boyne Valley in Co. Meath, Ireland. Archaeologists classified Newgrange as a passage tomb, however it is now recognized to be much more than a passage tomb. Ancient Temple is a more fitting classification, a place of astrological, spiritual, religious and ceremonial importance.
Galway City, County Galway
Galway is Ireland's 4th largest city and a hugely popular tourist destination for both Irish and international visitors. The city is vibrant with festivals and events constantly on. There is also a lot cultural interest with literary ties to a number of Ireland's great writers. The local people are incredibly friendly and will help ensure a stop here will never be forgotten.
Connemara Celtic Crystal, County Galway
Celtic Crystal is situated in the Connemara Gaeltacht (an Irish language speaking area) in the village of Moycullen, 7 mi (12 km) from Galway City. Located on the site of the "old railway station", which formed part of the famous Clifden line, Celtic Crystal was founded in 1972. This family-run business has been pioneering the incorporation of Celtic designs and Gaelic motifs into its ornate Irish Crystal and it is proud to claim leadership in this field.
Connemara Marble Factory, County Galway
The mining of Connemara Marble is one of Ireland’s oldest indigenous industries. The Connemara Marble Visitor Center is located at Moycullen, 8 miles west of Galway City on the N59. The marble factory showroom and shop has Ireland's largest display of Connemara Marble jewellery, fashioned in gold and silver depicting the shamrock, harp, Celtic cross and the Claddagh ring.
Claddagh Region, County Galway
Claddagh (meaning "the stony beach") is an area close to the city centre of Galway, where the Corrib River meets Galway Bay. It was formerly a fishing village, just outside the old city walls. It is just across the river from the Spanish Arch, which was the location of regular fish markets where the locals supplied the city with seafood as recently as the end of the 19th Century. People have been gathering seafood and fishing from the area for millennia.
Trad on the Prom, County Galway
Providing Irish song, dance and music from some of the most talented Irish musicians, dancers and singers in the country this is a showcase of contemporary Irish traditional culture that is not to be missed, with critics hailing it as “the best Irish show of the year”.
Eyre Square, Galway City
Eyre Square was officially renamed Kennedy Memorial Park in 1965 in honour of U.S. President John F. Kennedy, who visited Galway City a short time before his assassination. Now a public park, the plot of land originally took its name from Mayor Edward Eyre who presented the land to the city in 1710.
Galway Cathedral, Galway City
Situated on the banks of the River Corrib in Galway City, Galway Cathedral is the most recently built of Europe's great stone cathedrals, and is the centre of a vibrant community. Galway Cathedral is the seat of the Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Galway, Kilmacduagh and Kilfenora. The word "cathedral" is derived from the Greek "kathedra", meaning a seat; and indeed this seat is to be found within the sanctuary of the Cathedral.
Galway City Museum, Galway City
The Galway Museum is essentially a folk museum and it features a considerable number of artefacts related to the fishing industry, which was, and is an integral part of tradition in the city. The museum aims to provide a cross section of the antiques and implements that were historically used in Galway, reflecting its traditions. Artefacts include farm implements and tools as well as pieces of machinery. There is an impressive collection of military material, including arms.
Clifden, County Galway
Clifden, nestled amidst breathtaking mountain scenery and beautiful rugged coastline is one of Ireland's most loved towns. Located in the West of of the county, Clifden is the largest town in Connemara, which of course is an outstanding jewel in Ireland's scenic crown. Below you’ll find information on some of the attractions in this beautiful area.
Connemara Region, County Galway
Connemara (in Irish: Conamara), which derives from Conmhaicne Mara (meaning: descendants of Con Mhac, of the sea), is a district in the west of Ireland comprising of a broad peninsula between Killary Harbour and Kilkieran Bay in the west of County Galway or south west Connacht. The Conmhaicne Mara were a branch of the Conmhaicne, an early tribal grouping that had a number of branches located in different parts of Connacht.
Kylemore Abbey, County Galway
Known as Ireland’s most romantic Castle, Kylemore Abbey, located in Connemara, Co. Galway is the No.1 tourist attraction in the West of Ireland. Perfect for a family day out and easily accessible from Galway or Mayo, Kylemore Abbey & Victorian Walled Garden offers visitors scenic photographic opportunities as well as woodland walks, garden tours, fascinating history, beautiful architecture, ample shopping in the craft shop and tempting homemade delights in the restaurant and tea rooms.
Connemara National Park, County Galway
Connemara National Park is situated in the west of Ireland in County Galway and covers some 2,957 hectares of scenic mountains, expanses of bogs, heaths, grasslands and woodlands. Some of the Park’s mountains, namely Benbaun, Bencullagh, Benbrack and Muckanaght, are part of the famous Twelve Bens or Beanna Beola range which are a dominant feature of the Connemara countryside.
Connemara Smokehouse, County Galway
Family owned and run by the Roberts Family since 1979, Connemara Smokehouse is the oldest smokehouse in Connemara and one of the oldest in Western Ireland. It is one of the few remaining smokehouses still specialising in smoking wild Atlantic salmon.
Killary Fjord, County Galway
Killary Harbour/An Caoláire Rua is a fjord located in the West of Ireland in the heart of Connemara which forms a natural border between counties Galway and Mayo. It is 16 km (9.94 mi) long and in the centre over 45 m (148 ft.) deep. It is one of three glacial fjords that exist in Ireland, the others being Lough Swilly and Carlingford Lough.
Killary Cruises, County Galway
No visit to Connemara would be complete without a visit to Killary Fjord. The nine mile long inlet boasts some of the finest scenery in the West of Ireland, and because of its sheltered nature, its waters are always calm.
Rathbaun Farm, County Galway
Rathbaun Farm is situated in a rural area of Southwest County Galway in Ardrahan. Visitors to Rathbaun Farm will become enchanted by its thatched cottage home, turf fire, stone walls and an array of animals. Time spent here gives a glimpse into the daily workings of a sheep-farm with plenty of time to see the animals, feed the lambs, talk to the family and explore the farmyard.
Cliffs of Moher, County Clare
The Cliffs of Moher are one of Ireland's top Visitor attractions in County Clare. The Cliffs are 214m high at the highest point and range for 8 kilometres over the Atlantic Ocean on the western seaboard of Clare. O'Brien's Tower stands proudly on a headland of the majestic Cliffs. From the Cliffs one can see the Aran Islands, Galway Bay, as well as The Twelve Pins, the Maum Turk Mountains in Connemara and Loop Head to the South.
Burren Region, County Clare
The Burren, from the Gaelic word Boireann is an area of limestone rock covering imposing majestic mountains, and tranquil valleys with gently meandering streams. With its innate sense of spiritual peace, extraordinary array of flora and wildlife, and megalithic tombs and monuments older than Egypt's pyramids, the Burren creates a tapestry of colour and a seductively magical aura which few people leave without wanting to experience again.
Burren Smokehouse, County Clare
The Burren Smokehouse Visitors Centre was established in 1995, to create a window for the smokehouse own products and other local gourmet products and crafts. It has become a popular tourist attraction in the North County Clare area and welcomes over 30,000 visitors from all over the world each year. Visit the Burren Smokehouse Visitor Centre and get a tasting of the Burren smoked salmon. You can discover mosaics inside and outside the shop, and look at the first kiln that was used when the Burren Smokehouse was first set up.
Caherconnell Stone Fort, County Clare
Caherconnell Stone Fort, situated 1km (0.6mi) south of Poulnabrone dolmen in the heart of the Burren Ireland, offers you the opportunity to visit an exceptionally well preserved example of the stone forts or stone ringforts, which are to be found in the Burren in Ireland. The fort is in its original state. Its position, overlooking virtually all-surrounding areas suggests a defensive settlement. Ringforts such as Caherconnell are thought to have been inhabited from 400-1200 AD.
Aillwee Cave, County Clare
In the heart of the Burren in County Clare, perched high on its Burren terraced mountain side with spectacular views of Galway Bay lies Ireland's premier showcave - an experience, which should be part of everyone’s visit to the Burren. Aillwee Cave welcomes you to its underground surprises, a place of wonder, beauty and discovery.
Dolphinwatch Carrigaholt, County Clare
Dolphinwatch was founded in 1992 in the Shannon Estuary. This family-run business headed up by Geoff and Susanne Magee offers a range of boat trips, which take you out into the waters off the Clare coast, where you can catch a glimpse of the dolphins who dwell there. In the hands of Geoff (a qualified Captain, with many years experience in commercial fishing and eco-marine tourism) and Susanne (who has run a local sailing school and lived by the sea all her life), you are guaranteed a truly unique experience.
Bunratty Castle and Folk Park, County Clare
At Ireland’s premier visitor attraction you are invited to explore three wonderful experiences – the acclaimed 15th Century Bunratty Castle, the 19th century Bunratty Folk Park and the Village Street. The Castle is the most complete and authentic medieval fortress in Ireland. Built in 1425 it was restored in 1954 to its former medieval splendour and now contains mainly 15th and 16th century furnishings, tapestries, and works of art which capture the mood of those times. Today, the castle stands peacefully in delightful grounds.
Bunratty Banquet, County Clare
Bunratty Castle, built in the 15th Century by the Earl of Thomond, stands on the banks of the Rathy River in Clare. During his rule, the Earl was known for hospitality and regularly lavished his guests with entertainment. The Bunratty Medieval Banquet is now held twice nightly throughout the year harking back to the Earl’s extravagant banquets.
Durty Nelly's, County Clare
Durty Nelly’s is one of Ireland’s most famous pubs and offers a truly unique Irish experience through its history and character. Often copied but never replaced, this truly unique piece of Irish heritage dates back to 1620. Enjoy the craic agus ceoil at the world-renowned Durty Nelly’s where there’s live Traditional Irish music seven nights a week and festivals all year.
Ring of Kerry, County Kerry
The Ring of Kerry, also known as the Iveragh Peninsula is part of a mythical and unspoilt region in the south west of Ireland that has been attracting visitors for hundreds of years. The area is full of spectacular attractions and it’s natural beauty makes it the perfect center for outdoor pursuits such as golf, cycling, walking, water-sports and fishing.
Muckross House and Gardens, County Kerry
Situated in the Killarney National Park, Muckross House and Gardens are among the most popular of Irish visitor attractions, with the house itself situated close to the shores of Muckross Lake.Muckross House was built for Henry Arthur Herbert and his wife with building commenced in 1839 and completed in 1843. Today the principal rooms of the house are furnished in period style and portray the elegant lifestyle of the 19th Century landowning class.
Killarney National Park, County Kerry
South and west of the town of Killarney in Co. Kerry is an expanse of rugged mountainous country. This includes the McGillycuddy's Reeks, the highest mountain range in Ireland which rises to a height of over 1000 meters. At the foot of these mountains nestle the world famous South and west of the town of Killarney in Co. Kerry is an expanse of rugged mountainous country. This includes the McGillycuddy's Reeks, the highest mountain range in Ireland which rises to a height of over 1000 meters. At the foot of these mountains nestle the world famous lakes of Killarney.of Killarney.
Tangney's Jaunting Cars and Lakes of Killarney Cruise, County Kerry
Killarney Jaunting Cars is the perfect option to show you the hidden delights of Killarney National Parklands and the famous Lakes of Killarney that will forever captivate you by its beauty and charm. The Tangney Family’s intimate knowledge of Killarney and its surrounds derives from five generations of touring the scenic routes of the Killarney National Park.
Ross Castle, County Kerry
Ross Castle sits on the edge of Killarney's lower lake and was built by O' Donoghue Mór in the 15th Century. The Castle came into the hands of the Brownes who became the Earls of Kenmare and owned an extensive portion of the lands that are now part of Killarney National Park. Legend has it that O' Donoghue still exists in a deep slumber under the waters of Lough Leane.
Kate Kearney's Cottage, County Kerry
Nestled at the entrance to the world famous Gap of Dunloe lies Kate Kearney's Cottage, a 150 year old family-run establishment. At "‘Kate's" you will enjoy the tradition of hospitality made famous by the legendary Kate herself.
Listowel Castle, County Kerry
The construction date of the earliest castle at Listowel dates to the 13th century but the present castle was probably built in the 15th Century by the FitzMaurices. The castle stands on an elevation on a steep bank, overlooking the river Feale, above the location of a strategic ford in Listowel town center.
Blarney Castle, County Cork
Blarney Castle was built nearly six hundred years ago by one of Ireland's greatest chieftains, Cormac MacCarthy, and has been attracting attention beyond Munster ever since. Over the last few hundred years, millions have flocked to Blarney, making it a world landmark and one of Ireland's greatest treasures.
Blarney Woollen Mills, County Cork
The Blarney Woollen Mills were built in 1823 and originally went by the name Mahony’s Mills. It was a great source of employment for the people of Blarney and the surrounding areas, producing tweeds and woollens of an excellent quality for sale both and home and abroad. Today the Blarney Woollen Mills is Ireland’s largest Irish gifts store, stocking an extensive range of Ireland’s finest home grown products. At the store you’ll find Waterford Crystal, Belleek Fine china, Royal Tara, Celtic Jewellery and not forgetting the infamous Aran Sweaters.
Cork City, County Cork
In the 7th century St. Finbarr founded a monastery on marshy land and so laid the foundations stones of Cork City – the name deriving from the Gaelic – corach meaning marshy place. Over the subsequent centuries, it survived the arrival of the Vikings, Normans and English and today it is Ireland’s second largest city (after Dublin)
St. Anne's Church and Shandon Bells, Cork City
St. Anne’s Church, which dates back to the 6th Century is on of Cork City’s most outstanding attractions. Standing at 37 m (121 ft) tall it towers above the city making a stunning impression on the skyline, which is visible from wherever you are in the city. The Church is probably most well known for its bells: The Bells of Shandon. Visitors can climb to the top of the church tower where the bells reside and enjoy spectacular views of the city below, as well as getting the chance to ring the infamous bells.
Cork City Gaol, Cork City
Cork is a city with a very rich historical and archaeological heritage - much of it still in evidence today. Part of this heritage, Cork City Gaol is located 2k (1.2MI) n/w from Patrick’s Street and while the magnificent castle-like building is now a major and unique visitor attraction, this Gaol once housed 19th Century prisoners!
Cobh Titanic Trail, County Cork
The Titanic Trail Cobh (Queenstown) in Cork, is a fascintating guided tour that explores the town of Cobh in Cork Harbour, which was the last port of call of the RMS Titanic. This Irish heritage walking tour takes visitors through the historic town of Cobh where the buildings, streets and piers have not changed since the Titanic’s sinking nearly 100 years ago.
Kilkenny City, County Kilkenny
Kilkenny is a popular tourist town on the east coast of Ireland. The highlight of the town is Kilkenny Castle which is a 12th century castle. Other important stops are St. Canice's Cathedral and the Smithwicks Brewery.
Kilkenny Castle, Kilkenny City
The magnificent Kilkenny Castle overlooks the River Nore and has guarded this important river crossing for more than nine hundred years. The castle gardens around Kilkenny Castle, with extensive woodland paths, rose garden and ornamental lake, are well worth a visit. A 12th Century castle, remodeled in Victorian times and set in extensive parkland, which was the principal seat of the Butler family.
Kilkenny Design Craft Centre, Kilkenny City
Based in the medieval city of Kilkenny the creative heart of Ireland, the Centre is situated in what was once the stables of historic Kilkenny Castle, and is fittingly located adjacent to the National Craft Gallery one of Ireland’s most exciting artistic venues.
Kilfane Glen and Waterfalls, County Kilkenny
Kilfane Glen and Waterfall is a rare beauty. Located 3.2km (3mi) north of Thomastown in Kilkenny it is a perfectly preserved example of a romantic era garden dating from the 1790’s. Within the confines of this excellently restored mini paradise are tiny bridges, ancient tress, wild foxgloves, ferns and many other examples of foliage, which are historically correct to the 18th Century.
Dunmore Cave, County Kilkenny
Dunmore Cave features an interesting blend of the historical and geological. The caves are made up of a number of chambers, which were formed over millions of years ago and they contain some of the most impressive calcite formation in any Irish cave. Dunmore cave has been known to man for many centuries and is first mentioned in the 9th Century Irish Triads.
Jerpoint Abbey, County Kilkenny
Constructed during the second half of the 12th Century, and located near Thomastown, Kilkenny, Jerpoint Abbey is an outstanding Cistercian abbey. The building features Romanesque detailing from this period and in the transept chapels, visitors can also see 13th and 16th Century tomb sculptures, whilst the tower and cloister date from the 15th Century.
Glendalough, County Wicklow
Glendalough, Co. Wicklow is one of Ireland's most beautiful visitors' destinations. For thousands of years people have been drawn to 'the valley of the two lakes' for its spectacular scenery, rich history, archaeology and abundant wildlife. Glendalough has long been an area renowned for its natural beauty and history and it is one of the most visited places in Ireland.
Wicklow Mountains National Park, County Wicklow
Wicklow Mountains National Park covers part of a mountain range that extends over most of County Wicklow on the east coast of Ireland. The upper slopes and rounded peaks are blanketed with heath and bog. The open vistas are interrupted only by forestry plantations and the winding mountain roads. Fast-flowing streams descend into the deep lakes of the wooded valleys and continue their course into the surrounding lowlands.
Powerscourt House and Gardens, County Wicklow
The Powerscourt Estate is is located in Enniskerry, Co. Wicklow, just 19km (11.4mi) south of Dublin. The gardens are comprised of formal gardens, sweeping terraces, rambling walks, ornamental lakes and over 200 varieties of trees and shrubs. The 18th Century Palladian House incorporates a variety of shops, terrace café and house exhibition.