Wild Atlantic Way 11 Day tour

A Wild, Rugged & Liberating Journey!

Day 1 – Fáilte goh Éireann Welcome to Ireland’s capital city, Dublin or in
Gaelic, Dubhlinn referring  to the black pool that lies beneath the grounds of
Dublin Castle. The original castle was built during the medieval period, which
forms a significant part of the city’s chequered history from its establishment by the Vikings at the
end of the 9th century, through the splendor ofthe Georgian period and on to the conflicts of the
War of Independence and the Civil War. Dublin today is a welcoming intimate city that blends its
modern outlook with its colourful past.

Overnight: Dublin (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 2 – Sligo/Donegal Region
Depart for the West of Ireland from where you will join the Wild Atlantic Way route in the North West
region. Travel to Sligo also known as Yeats Country as the scenery inspired many of the great works of
W.B. Yeats, the Nobel Prize winning Irish writer. At Parkes Castle you can depart for a cruise on
Lough Gill (an inspiration for some of Yeat’s poetry) on the Rose of Innisfree tourboat where
the captain will regale you with some of Yeats poems.
Sligo is also famed for its beaches and Surfing at places such as Strandhill and Mullaghmore or you
could always indulge yourself by taking a rejuvenating traditional seaweed bath. These
therapeutic baths are available at award-winning Voya Seaweed Baths at Strandhill, and the
Edwardian Kilcullen’s Seaweed Baths at Enniscrone.
Overnight: Sligo/Donegal (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 3 – Sligo/Donegal Region
Today discover the magnificent cliffs at Slieve League (in Gaelic: Sliabh Liag) that are amongst the
highest sea cliffs in Europe and the huge panoramas presented to you from these cliffs can
look different in every segment. Travelling from Sligo via Donegal town and Killybegs, the home of
Ireland’s largest fishing fleet, continue to the village of Carrick. From the nearby Slieve League
visitor centre you can walk to the Cliffs face or take the shuttle bus. Or if you want to get closer still,
why not take a cruise in the small open Nuala Star boat from Teelin Harbour.
Near Sligo town on the road to Donegal is Drumcliffe Churchyard where W.B. Yeats is buried
as requested “under bare Benbulben’s head”. Make the easy climb to the top of Knocknarea
mountain to view Queen Maebh’s Cairn. She was the legendary chieftan Queen of Connemara and
from the mountain top enjoy the vista over Sligo Bay and the mountains and lakes of this beautiful
county.
Overnight: Sligo/Donegal (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 4 – Mayo
Journey further west towards and stop off to explore the Céide Fields at Ballycastle. This is the
largest Stone Age monument and the oldest known field systems in the world, set in a vast
prehistoric landscape of bog, dramatic cliffs and coastline. Displays, walking tours and AV shows tell
the story of the everyday lives of a farming people,their organized society, their highly developed
spiritual beliefs. Continue via picturesque Newport town famous for both its fresh water fishing and
Sea angling. The town is now situated in the heart of the 42km Great Western Greenway (opened in
2011), the longest off-road walking and cycling trail in Ireland.
Overnight: Mayo/Connemara (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 5 – Mayo
Today take time out to explore the island of Achill, cross the road bridge to experience many outdoor
activities from hillwalking to fishing and angling, from golf, painting or horse-riding to surfing,
windsurfing or scuba diving. Why not tour the island to absorb the magnificent scenery on the
island’s Atlantic drive that provides a spectacular journey with breath-taking views and see the
Deserted Village abandoned in the early 20th century for an unknown reason. Achill also offers
the opportunity to cycle the spectacular Greenway route that stretches from Achill Island to Westport
town. Discover the small charming Heritage town of Westport that is much loved by the Irish and
tourists alike. It has delightful Georgian streetscapes and stone bridges over the
Carrowbeg River and is home to Matt Molloys pub famed for its music and
owned by the flute player from the world famous Chieftans trad Irish band.
On the edge of the town you can visit Westport House and Country Park where there are activities for all the
family. The impressive stately home itself was originally built by Richard Cassels, the German
architect, in the 1730s, on the site of the original Ó’Máille Castle, home of the pirate queen Grace O
’Malley.
Overnight: Mayo/Connemara (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 6 – Galway
Travel South via Leenane to see the unspoilt beauty of Connemara, a place of contrasts,
colours, and wilderness that stretches from the bogs and lakes of the Gaelic speaking South
Connemara, to the mountain vistas of the Twelve Bens in North and West Connemara. Stop off just
outside Leenane and take a spectacular cruise along Ireland’s only fjord aboard Killary Cruises’
“The Connemara Lady “, travelling along the 16 km long inlet with a depth of up to 45m.
Continue to Clifden, the largest town in Connemara and stop off at Kylemore Abbey, set in
a dramatic landscape. Originally built as a private home in 1868, it became home to the Irish order of
Benedictine nuns who still live there today. Explore the visitor centre, part of
the house and the beautifully restored Victorian walled garden. Nearby Creggan
Village you could enjoy a walk on the unique tidal island of Omey which is
accessible on foot or even by car two hours before low water & high water
(check tides beforehand on sailing.ie). South of Clifden in Ballyconneely the
spectacular Connemara Championship Golf Club will test the ardent golfer on its
links course overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Drop into the nearby family run
Connemara Smokehouse where you can find a range of award winning wild,
organic, and farmed, smoked salmon & seafood. You could continue to the fishing
village of Roundstone to sample some locally caught Lobster or crab. While there
check out Ireland’s foremost Bodhran maker, Malachy Kearns, at Roundstones
Musical instruments and learn about the art of creating this unique traditional Irish
instrument.
If you are looking for entertainment near Galway City, Trad on the Prom show runs
three times weekly during the summer months, one of Ireland's best known
music, song and dance experiences celebrating the passion of Ireland's past
with a contemporary production.
Overnight: Galway (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 7 – Clare
This morning take to the streets of the City of the Tribes,
Galway, one of the most popular and lively cities in Ireland. From the centuries old
Claddagh area to the pedestrianized streets of pubs and restaurants and the
seafront Promenade of Salthill, Galway has so much to offer the visitor. It hosts a
myriad of festivals and events every summer such as the Galway Arts festival
and the famous Galway Races. Then travel to County Clare and along the Black
Head coastal route and discover the unique lunar-like landscape of the Burren.
The Burren, is a Karst limestone region of approximately 300 sq. km, which consists
of imposing majestic mountains, and tranquil valleys with gently meandering
streams. On route why not stop at the Cafe Linnalla where they serve fresh
handmade Ice Cream with milk and cream from their shorthorn cows on their family
farm. Continue to the world famous Cliffs of Moher. Then journey off the beaten
track along Loop Head Drive on Loop Head peninsula to see the views from the Loop
Head lighthouse where nearby the 19th Century light keepers house now offers modern
accommodation. If you like Dolphins then don’t  miss the opportunity to take a boat trip with
Dolphin Discovery Kilrush who have a 98% success rate on locating dolphins on their trips.
Overnight: Clare (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 8 – Kerry
Take the 20 minute Shannon Car ferry ride from Killimer to Tarbert and cross one of Europe’s
longest and deepest estuaries. Twenty kilometres east of Tarbert along the Shannon estuary is the unique visitor attraction,Foynes Flying Boat Museum. From 1939 to 1945 Foynes was the centre of the aviation world for air traffic between the United States and Europe andthe museum recalls this era with a comprehensive  range of exhibits and graphic illustrations. Themuseum features
the original Terminal Building including the authentic 1940's cinema; the Radio and Weather
Rooms, complete with transmitters, receivers and Morse code equipment. Irish Coffee was invented
in Foynes. Chef Joe Sheridan made the first one in 1942 to warm up some damp and miserable
passengers. Since then Irish Coffee has become one the most popular welcoming drinks in the
world. Continue to Tralee and check out the new Tralee Bay Wetlands Centre which is an activity
and nature based visitor experience beside the Tralee Bay Nature Reserve. Visitors are introduced
to the fresh and saltwater habitats through AV shows and interactive displays. Guided nature boat
tours are available through the wetland reed and willow canals spotting wildfoul, wildlife and
wetland habitat while the 20 m high viewing tower provides a panoramic view of the bay. Head west
to the stunningly beautiful Dingle Peninsula, a Gaelic speaking area and where you will find some
of the finest coastal scenery in Ireland and is also famous for its Celtic, pre-Christian monuments and
Christian churches. The road around the Peninsula is truly spectacular. It passes through a chain of
Mountains, called Slieve Mish. At Inch beach, take a stroll along the strand bordered by dunes and
made famous by David Lean’s movie “Ryan’s daughter”. Dingle town itself is a thriving fishing
town and offers plenty of opportunity for shoppingor simply savouring the atmosphere of a typical
country Irish town with its plentiful charming pubs, narrow streets and busy harbour. From Dingle,
drive around the coast to Slea Head. Here the blue of the marine landscape surrounds the Blaskets
Islands, deserted since 1953. The Blasket Centre celebrates the story of the Blasket Islanders, the
unique literary achievements of the island writers and their native language, culture and tradition.
Near Ballyferriter on Slea Head, why not try your hand at throwing pottery at the workshop of the
famous pottery maker Louis Mulcahy. Visitors can throw a bowl and learn the basics of pottery
making and ceramic techniques. Tours of the factory are also available, next to retail centre.
Overnight: Kerry (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 9 – Kerry
Travelling along the Ring of Kerry stop off at Valentia Island where you can visit the Skellig
Experience, a heritage centre dedicated to life on the Skellig islands. The Skellig Islands are found
12km off the coast of Kerry. The larger Island, Skellig Michael, an UNESCO World Heritage site, was a
monastic site occupied from the 6th until the 12th century. Boat trips to see Skellig Michael depart from
the nearby harbour. For a unique chocolate experience stop off at Balinskelligs to visit the family
run Skelligs Chocolate factory on the edge of the Atlantic. Continue to Waterville, home to superb
golf courses and excellent sea trout and salmon angling. Further on the Ring of Kerry route, you
will find Derrynane House, which was the home of Catholic emancipator Daniel O'Connell (1775-
1847). An impressive speaker, he was Ireland's first Catholic MP. O'Connell was born into a very old,
wealthy Irish family who had made their fortune through smuggling and trading. Ironically, these
illegal gains enabled Daniel O'Connell to pursue a career in law and politics. The charming house has
been carefully restored and includes many unique pieces of furniture, silverware and possessions.
The 120 hectares of parkland around the house form part of the Derrynane National Park and are
worth a visit. Kenmare is the next stop, an attractive town associated with the Lace industry
in the 19th and 20th centuries.
Overnight: Kerry (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 9 – Cork ‘Alternative’ (or Kerry)
Depart for Cork and travel along the scenic tunnels route to Glengarriff where the road leads you
through a number of rock tunnels as you travel by the Caha Mountains on the Beara peninsula. You
will encounter stunning views of Bantry Bay before arriving in Glengarriff. The Gardens of Ilnacullin
(Garinish Island) are well worth a visit. It is a unique Island that plays host to a
multitude of plant variations, and the blanket of summer colouring which
covers the Island and creates a rainbow of colour. The Island has a wonderful
history and its unusual micro climate allows a range of exotic subtropical plant
species to flourish. There are a number of walks and interesting buildings on the
Island. On route to the Island you will enjoy the magnificent views of the bay
and also pass Seal Island with its colony of harbour seals. The Harbour Queen Ferries
provides a regular service from Glengarriff Pier to the Gardens of
Ilnacullin on Garinish Island. Continue to Cork via Clonakilty and Skibbereen
Overnight: Cork (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 10 – Dublin
This morning visit the famous Victorian English market in Cork City centre which
is a covered market for fish, fruit & veg, breads and cheese and much more. The origins of the market can be traced back
to James 1st in 1610, but the present building dates from 1786. Before
departing Cork why not Ring the world famous Shandon Bells in the tower of St
Annes Church. Depart for Dublin. Continue via Ireland’s Golden Vale region
in Cork and Tipperary where much of the country’s cattle heard is reared on the
fertile land to produce Ireland’s high quality Beef and Dairy products. Stop in
Cashel town to visit the famous Rock of Cashel. One of the most photographed
sites in Ireland, the Rock of Cashel towers over the town from its perch on a 200-
foot high outcrop of limestone. Once the seat of the Kings of Munster. St. Patrick
visited the rock in 450, while Brian Boru was crowned the first high King of Ireland
here in the tenth century. Continue to Dublin for the last evening of your tour.
Option Irish House Party or Merry Ploughboys

Overnight: Dublin (Bed & Full Breakfast)

Day 11 – Depart Dublin
Slán Abhaile. Transfer to Dublin Airport for your flight

Highlights:
 Guinness Storehouse,
Dublin
 Viking Dublin
 Lough Gill Cruise, Sligo
 Seaweed Baths, Sligo
 Slieve League, Donegal
 Queen Maebh’s Cairn,Sligo
 Céide Fields, Mayo
 Achill Island, Mayo
 Westport House &Country Park, Mayo
 Killary Cruise, Galway
 Kylemore Abbey,Galway
 Bodhrán making,Galway
 ‘Trad on the Prom’,Galway
 The Burren, Clare
 Cliffs of Moher, Clare
 Foynes Flying Boat Museum, Limerick
 Tralee Bay Wetlands Centre, Kerry
 Dingle Peninsula, Kerry
 Ring of Kerry, Kerry
 English Market, Cork
 Shandon Bells, Cork
 Rock of Cashel, Tipperary
 Merry Ploughboys Pub, Dublin

Services Include:
 10 nights at 3 & 4 Star Hotels, B&Bs & Castle/Manor House Hotels with full Irish breakfast each morning
 Service charges & taxes at 9% (VAT)
 Heritage Island Touring Guide & Explorer CouponService Charges & taxes at exiting rates

Example Hotels (or Similar):
 Dublin – 3* Maldron Newlands CrossHotel
 Sligo – 4* Clarion Hotel
 Mayo/Connemara – 3* Bed & Breakfast
 Galway – 3* Salthill Hotel
 Clare – 3* Temple Gate Hotel
 Kerry/Cork – 3* Bed & Breakfast
 Dublin – 4* Fitzpatrick’s Castle Hotel 5* DLX Hotels (or Similar):
 Dublin – Merrion Hotel
 Donegal – Solis Lough Eske Castle Hotel
 Mayo/Connemara – Ballynahinch Castle
 Galway – Glenlo Abbey
 Clare – Dromoland Castle
 Kerry – Sheen Falls Lodge
 Dublin – Merrion Hotel

Services Not Included:
 Transportation

Prices

LOW SEASON HIGH SEASON PEAK SEASON
JAN-  APR

01 OCT – 14 DEC

01 MAY – 10 JULY 21 AUG – 30 SEP 11 JUL – 20 AUG
DOUBLE $1549 $1699 $1799
SINGLE $2299 $2399 $2599
TRIPLE $1499 $1639 $1699
CHILD* based on 1 child 3-12 years sharing with 2 adults $389 $429 $429