8. 5-Day Tour of Northern Ireland
Day 1: Dublin - Connemara - Galway
To begin your amazing experience, depart Dublin and make your way to the West of Ireland and tour beautiful Connemara. On your way across the midlands of Ireland, take a comfort stop for refreshments before arriving in the enchanting village of Cong. Famed by John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara in the film Quiet Man, the village is home to Ashford castle, a regular haunt of the rich and famous and a wedding venue for a host of international stars. Have time to visit Cong Abbey before continuing your journey through the wilderness of Connemara. Enjoy the unique landscape, beautiful lakes, valleys and mountain scenery. Gaelic speaking, this area still maintains many of Ireland's traditional ways, however it was deserted during the dreadful famine times of 1845. to 1851. Arrive in Galway mid afternoon to ensure that you get the most out of this cultural city. Have time to explore the Spanish Arch and ramble around colorful shop street with its many street performers, seafood eateries, and quaint Irish bars with wonderful musicians. A great night of real Irish entertainment is always a highlight of Ireland's traditional music capital.
Day 2: Galway - Sligo - Letterkenny
After a great night in Galway, set off through parts of Connemara to the Museum of Country Life. Here you are introduced to the Irish way of life that has existed in this rugged and beautiful part of country since 1800s. Your lunch stop today shall be Ireland's premier surf venue and beach at Strandhill, County Sligo. Watch some of Ireland's finest breakers roll against your Atlantic shores before heading off through the poetic heartland of Ireland, W.B. Yeat's country. Visit his final resting place in Drumcliff Abbey, and admire the beautiful Benbulben referenced in many of his poems. Your overnight this evening is the town of Letterkenny, Co. Donegal's most populous town.
Day 3: Letterkenny - Donegal - Derry - Letterkenny
Begin today with an excellent in-depth tour of Donegal's Glenveagh National Park. Here, take the opportunity to enjoy nature with lakeside walks and a visit to Glenveagh Castle. Onwards to Grianan of Aileach a hilltop fort, 3000 years old with panoramic views of 5 of the counties of Ulster and legendary stories from every era of Irish history. This afternoon, visit the city of Derry. Enjoy a walking tour of Derry's walls (1613) and the well known Bogside district made famous by the 1972 massacre and U2 song "Bloody Sunday". Enjoy some time at leisure and maybe a pint in one of the local pubs. Return to Letterkenny to relax for the evening.
Day 4: Letterkenny - Giant’s Causeway - Glens of Antrim - Belfast
Today, cruise the beautiful North Antrim Coast. Continue along the coastal route, with fantastic views and photo opportunities of Whitepark Bay. Next it's Northern Ireland's highlight the Giant's Causeway with its 37,000 basalt columns forming stepping stones leading from Ireland to Scotland and recounted in the legend of Fionn MacCool. The drive to Belfast takes us through part of the Glens of Antrim. Overnight in Belfast with a huge variety of options for dinner and evening entertainment
Day 5: Belfast - Dublin
Begin the day with a city tour of the highlights of Belfast including City Hall, Queen's University, Botanic Gardens and much more. Together, visit Titanic Belfast, a fascinating exhibit housed in the very docklands where this most famous ship was built and launched before her tragic maiden voyage. You will also have some time at leisure and many guests will take a Black Taxi tour (optional) of the political murals and of course the Peace Walls which divide the Catholic Republican from the Protestant Loyalist communities. Enjoy time for lunch and shopping downtown. Depart Belfast around 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM making a stop at Dublin Airport at 4:30 PM approximately and finish in Dublin at 5:00 PM approximately.