Ancient Ireland Self-Drive Tour 8 Days
7 Night Tour From $999 pps
This tour arrives/departs from Dublin but these arrival/departure points can be customised to include other airports 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).
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.
Viking Splash Tour, Dublin City
Book a trip with Viking Splash Tours for a unique Dublin sightseeing experience by Land and Water. Viking captains will guide you on a fun and witty tour of Dublin City, taking in all the top sights including Viking and Medieval Dublin, Trinity College, Christ Church Cathedral, Georgian Dublin and much more!
Dublinia, Dublin City
The Dublinia exhibition covers the formative period of Dublin's history from the arrival of the Anglo-Normans in 1170 to the closure of the monasteries in the 1540s. Dublinia is an unforgettable experience in a historically important location at the heart of Dublin City, the crossroads where modern and old Dublin meets.
Dublin Castle, Dublin City
Since its foundation in 1204 Dublin Castle has been at the heart of the history and evolution of the city. Today, spanning an area of over 44,000 square meters (11 acres), the site contains 2 museums, 2 cafés, an international conference centre, 2 gardens, Government Buildings and the State Apartments which are the most important state rooms in the country.
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.
Áras an Uachtaráin, County Dublin
Áras an Uachtaráin had a colourful history before becoming the Official Residence of the President of Ireland. Built in 1751 and situated in the 1,752 acres (709 hectares) of the Phoenix Park near Dublin, the original house was built by Park Ranger Nathaniel Clements. By 1782 it had been acquired for use by the Viceroys who oversaw British rule in Ireland.
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.
Old Jameson Distillery, Dublin City
A visit to the Old Jameson Distillery is so much more than just a tour, it is an exciting and engaging experience, guaranteed to enlighten and entertain any visitor.
Butlers - Chocolate Experience, County Dublin
Butlers Chocolate Experience is ultimate chocolate discovery tour in Ireland. Based in the home of Butlers Chocolates a visit here is a must for chocolate lovers of all ages.
Brazen Head - Food, Fairies & Folklore Night, Dublin City
The Food, Fairies and Folklore night is a regular event hosted by The Brazen Head – Ireland’s oldest pub. The pub itself which dates back to 1198 has managed to retain the charm and characteristics of its past and in particular its patrons, who have included literary greats such as: James Joyce, Jonathon Swift and Brendan Behan alongside such famed revolutionaries as Robert Emmet, Daniel O’ Connell, Wolfe Tone and Michael Collins.
Dublin Literary Pub Crawl, Dublin City
Immerse yourself in Dublin's rich literary heritage and enjoy a few pints along the way on a literary pub crawl through Dublin. This walking tour is a wonderful introduction to Dublin's literary past and exciting pub culture.
Glasnevin Museum & Cemetery, County Dublin
Glasnevin Museum and Cemetery offers a dynamic interpretation of Ireland’s history told through the lives of the people buried in Ireland’s necropolis. They have access to a rich narrative of Ireland told through the stories of Daniel O’Connell, Charles Stewart Parnell, Michael Collins, Eamon DeValera, Countess Marckievicz and Brendan Behan to name but a few. It offers daily tours and interactive exhibitions.
Merry Ploughboys Traditional Irish Music Night, County Dublin
This traditional pub in Dublin is the only pub in Ireland owned and managed by musicians, and it is the 'hands on' approach from the owners that makes every visit to the Merry Ploughboy a memorable and entertaining experience. The Merry Ploughboys show (which takes place nightly at the pub) is now in it's 22nd year making it the longest running show in Ireland hosted continuously by the same performers and the highlight of many people's trip to Ireland The show itself is a highly entertaining performance of live traditional Irish Music, Song and Irish Dancing.
Experience Gaelic Games, County Dublin
In Ireland our Gaelic Games and dance are part of who we are and what we do. At Experience Gaelic Games we give you the opportunity to come and experience this unique aspect of Ireland for yourself. You get to play the games, to watch a game, to dance – whatever suits you.
National Botanic Gardens, Dublin City
The National Botanic Gardens, located in Glasnevin, about 3.5km (2.1mi)north from the centre of Dublin, is noted for its fine plant collections holding over 15,000 plant species and cultivars from a variety of habitats from all around the world. Famous for its exquisitely restored and planted glasshouses, notably the Turner Curvilinear Range and the Great Palm House, both recipients of the Europa Nostra award for excellence in conservation architecture. Visitors can enjoy such features as the Herbaceous borders, rose garden, the alpine yard, the pond area, rock garden and arboretum.
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.
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.
Smithwick's Brewery Tour, County Kilkenny
Over 300 years ago in 1710, John Smithwick began brewing his first Ales - although the Smithwick’s story started long before then. He chose the site of an ancient monastery - St.Francis Abbey, to position his brewery. John was inspired by a tradition of brewing on this site, the foundations of which were laid four centuries earlier.
St. Canice's Cathedral and Round Tower, Kilkenny City
St Canice’s Cathedral and Round Tower are an essential part of the structural heritage in the vibrant medieval city of Kilkenny. This site was founded in the 6th Century and named after St Canice. Cill Channigh is the Gaelic for the Church of Canice, the church that originally stood on the site in the 6th Century.Combining the early Christian settlement, the Round Tower, the Anglo Norman Cathedral and its rich cultural heritage makes St Canice’s Cathedral and its environs a must to visit while you are in Kilkenny.
Kilkenny Traditional Irish Music Trail, Kilkenny City
The Kilkenny Traditional Irish Music Trail will take you on a journey of fun, music, stories, history, culture and always with bit of merriment to boot. Guided by two professional musicians, the tour meanders through Kilkenny’s bustling city centre streets stopping off at the most iconic traditional public houses the city has to offer.
Old Jail and Courthouse, County Kilkenny
Kilkenny Courthouse is a detached, two-storey over raised basement building located on Parliament Street, in the historical centre of Kilkenny. Originally a 16th Century castle and an 18th Centruy bridewell/gaol stood on the site. Its conversion to a courthouse occurred around 1792, and it was later remodelled around 1828. Another extension to the rear was added in roughly 1870. It has two double-height courtrooms, which were totally refurbished in 1980. The building holds importance both architecturally and historically. Many of the changes to the original structure may have been quite intensive but these have been reversed through the recent refurbishment and construction works.
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.
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.
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.
St. Finbarr’s Cathedral, Cork City
St. Finbarr’s Cathedral is situated in the centre of Cork City, Ireland. Designed by William Burges and consecrated in 1870, the Cathedral lies on a site where Christian worship has been offered since the 7th Century. Legend has it that St. Finbarr was the son of Amergin, whose tribe was descended from Eochaidh Muidmheadoin, brother of the king of Munster.
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!
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.
Fota Wildlife Park, County Cork
A trip to Fota Wildlife Park, one of Europe's most modern wildlife parks, is thoroughly enjoyable as well as being educational too.The Park is set on 70 acres on the scenic Fota Island in the heart of Cork Harbour, only fifteen minutes from Cork City.
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.
Charles Fort, County Cork
Charles Fort is a star fort located on the water's edge, at the southern end of the village of Summer Cove, on Kinsale harbour, County Cork, Ireland. James' Fort is located on the other side of the harbour.
Jameson Experience, Cork City
Follow the old distillery trail through mills, maltings, stillhouse, warehouses and kilns - some of these buildings date back to 1795. Unique within Ireland and Britain, you can also see the fully operational water wheel and large grain stores.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Muckross Friary, County Kerry
This Franciscan Friary was founded in the 15th century and is in a remarkable state of preservation. The tower was added after the church was built and is the only Franciscan tower in Ireland which is as wide as the church. The cloister and its associated buildings are complete and an old yew tree stands in the centre. The monks were finally driven out by the Cromwellians in 1652.
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.
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.
Derrynane House, County Kerry
Derrynane House is the ancestral home of Daniel O'Connell, lawyer, politician and statesman. It is situated on 120 hectares of parklands on the scenic Kerry coast, 3.5kms (2.2mi) from Caherdaniel. The house and grounds have been preserved and are open to the public every day during the summer months and anyone touring the Ring of Kerry should make a point of visiting.
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.
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.
Doolin Cave, County Clare
Doolin Cave is one of Europe's most compelling cave attractions. It is a truly authentic experience and your only opportunity to see one of the largest free hanging stalactites in the world.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Spanish Arch, Galway City
Thee Spanish Arch built in 1584, stands on the left bank of the River Corrib, where Galway's river meets the sea. The arch is the remainder of a 16th Century bastion, added to the town's walls to protect merchant ships from looting. At this time, it was known as Ceann an Bhalla (Head of the Wall).
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.
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.
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.
Clonmacnoise, County Offaly
Clonmacnoise (pronounced in Irish: Cluain Mhic Nois, “meadow of the sons of Nos”) is a monastic site overlooking the River Shannon in County Offaly. The extensive ruins include a cathedral, castle, round tower, numerous churches, two important high crosses, and a large collection of early Christian grave slabs (the last two on display in the excellent site museum).
Kilbeggan Distillery Experience, County Westmeath
The Kilbeggan Distillery Experience is the last remaining example of a small pot still whiskey distillery in Ireland. It was licensed in 1757 and whiskey production continued for 200 years until 1957, when the distillery closed its doors. In 1982, the local people began restoring the old distillery and today it is open to the public as a Museum.
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.
Slane Castle, County Meath
Slane Castle is set in the middle of a 1,500 acre estate in the heart of the Boyne Valley and has been in the family of the Conyngham’s since 1701. Slane Castle is steeped in history and with the river Boyne flowing below the Castle, it has a mystical quality. The Hill of Slane, which overlooks the Castle, is where St. Patrick lit his paschal fire, following which he was summoned by the High King to Tara, and Ireland was subsequently converted to Christianity.
Trim Castle, County Meath
Trim Castle is the largest Anglo-Norman castle in Ireland. It was constructed over a thirty year period by Hugh de Lacy and his son Walter. He was granted the Liberty of Meath by King Henry II in 1172 - a move which aimed to curb the expansionist policies of Richard de Clare (Strongbow).
Hill of Tara, County Meath
Though best known as the seat of the High Kings of Ireland, the Hill of Tara, which is s about 1.6 kms (0.9 mi) to the right off the main Navan/ Dublin Road, has been an important site since the late Stone Age when a passage-tomb was constructed there. Tara was at the height of its power as a political and religious centre in the early centuries after Christ. It is the wealth of history and legend associated with Royal Tara as the ancient spiritual and political Capital of Ireland, and its central place in Irish History, which attracts ongoing, national and international interest.