Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

Complete Ireland 2017- 2019 “inspiring coach travel”

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

Complete Ireland “Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” George Bernard Shaw; Irish playwright, socialist, and a co-founder of the London School of Economics (1856-1950) The Island of Ireland is quite simply the best place to create the new you. Never has so much been available to so many and yet, so near. Whether you are seeking peace and tranquillity, a buzzing nightlife, culture, history, adventure on land or sea, city, mountain or lake - health and happiness, fitness and fun, fine food and fine friends are waiting to be discovered by you.

For groups large and small, spread your imagination as there is a great deal more to see and do in Ireland than just the iconic cities, towns and villages you thought you knew so well. Take your coach across the sea and we’re pretty sure…’ll be back!

ICT’s team of experts are on hand to offer advice, support and quotations to meet your groups’ needs. Please don’t hesitate to contact us to see how we can help you. Don’t search for a new you, search for the new Complete Ireland. 2 Peter Stratton Managing Director ICT Gateway House, Stonehouse Lane, Purfleet, Essex, RM19 1NS Tel 01708 802 355 Fax 01708 802 377 Part of the Cruise and Maritime Travel & Leisure Group “inspiring coach travel” COACHTOURISM ASSOCIATION

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

01708 802 350 3 Glen Colm Cille (c) Martin Fleming / Tourism Ireland Pricing & Booking Conditions All pricing is based on 2018 rates and is quoted in sterling per person sharing a twin /double room.

Group size is based on a minimum of 30 paying people (unless otherwise indicated), prices for smaller or larger group sizes available on request. All prices and information are correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change until the booking has been confirmed. Offers are subject to availability. ICT booking terms and conditions apply - for further details please visit Tailor-made Service We hope you enjoy our selection of Irish tours, we believe we have something to suit all tastes, however, if you haven’t found what you are looking for wish to adjust any aspect of any tour, please speak to a member of our team.We are here to help create your perfect Irish trip through our tailor-made service.

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel 4 Take a day experience in Dublin, ever popular and ever changing. Whether there is a special event you want to attend, new attraction to check out or to simply soak up the vibrant atmosphere of the city streets. Currently some of the top visitor attractions include: Kilmainaham Gaol, Glasnevin Cemetery, Croke Park Stadium Tour & GAA Museum and the new Irish Whiskey Museum, where you will be guided though the rise and fall of Irish whiskey on an interactive tour, sampling aged whiskey.

Package Includes from £90 • 1 night B&B at Jury’s Inn, Dublin OR 1 night prior on Half Board at the Four Oaks Hotel, Llandudno (lead price) • Return ferry crossing Holyhead/Dublin* • Free time to explore Dublin’s Fair City *Ticket only available - admin fee applies Pre-bookable Extras • Entry to the Irish Whiskey Museum • Guinness Storehouse / Jameson Whiskey Dublin Day Experience Fishguard Rosslare Dublin Belfast Holyhead Liverpool Cairnryan Stena Line 3 hours 30 mins.

2 crossings per day Sea Route Crossing We now require full names as per passport for all Irish tours and drivers mobile number prior to travel Stena Line 3 hours 15 mins. 4 crossings a day Irish Ferries Swift: 2 hrs 30 mins. 2 crossings a day Cruise Ferry: 3 hours 30 mins. Stena Line 8 hours. 1 day & 1 night crossing only Stena Line 2 hrs & 15 mins. 6 crossings a day Lying just across the sea Lighthouses (c) Rob Durston / Failte Ireland Molly Malone Statue (c) Tourism Ireland

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

What better way to visit Ireland than on a cruise, let your floating hotel take you there in style and comfort. Discover Ireland’s iconic cities or take an excursion and uncover the Emerald Isle’s beautiful scenery. Cruise & MaritimeVoyages (CMV) is Britain’s leading independent cruise line offering a traditional British cruise experience on board its fleet of small to mid-sized cruise ships. Sailing from a choice of UK ports, cruising with CMV couldn’t be more convenient. Scottish Highlights & Emerald Isle from £519pp Marco Polo departs Bristol Avonmouth, 7th April 2018, 7 nights Bristol Avonmouth - Belfast - Stornoway (Isle of Lewis)h - Tobermory (Isle of Mull)h - Dublin - Cobh for Cork - Bristol Avonmouth Grand British Isles Discovery from £765pp Astoria departs London Tilbury, 14th March 2018, 11 nights LondonTilbury - Kirkwall (Orkney Islands) - Stornoway (Isle of Lewis)h -Tobermory (Isle of Mull)h - Belfast - Dublin - Cobh for Cork - St.

Mary’s (Isles of Scilly)h - St Peter Port (Guernsey)h - Honfleur (France) - LondonTilbury Prices are from and per person based on two adults sharing a twin cabin, subject to availability. The from prices are shown as a guide and are subject to change. Please call for full details and current fares.

British Isles Discovery from £775pp Magellan departs Newcastle Tyne, 2nd June 2018, 10 nights NewcastleTyne - Dundee - Kirkwall (Orkney Islands) - Tobermory (Isle of Mull)h - Dublin - Ringaskiddy for Cork - St Mary’s (Isles of Scilly)h - St Peter Port (Guernsey)h - NewcastleTyne Emerald Isle & Isles of Scilly from £389pp Marco Polo departs Cardiff, 27th May 2018, 5 nights Cardiff - Dublin - Cobh for Cork - Glengariffh - St Mary’s (Isles of Scilly)h - Cardiff British Isles & Cities Discovery from £749pp Columbus departs London Tilbury, 25th Sept 2018, 10 nights LondonTilbury - Rotterdam (Netherlands) - Kirkwall (Orkney Islands)- Portree (Isle of Skye)h - Belfast - Dublin - Cobh for Cork - Honfleur (France) - LondonTilbury Weekend Cruise to Dublin from £149pp Magellan departs Liverpool, 25th August 2018, 2 nights Liverpool - Dublin -Bristol Port.

Transfer back to Liverpool £30pp 01708 802 350 5 Cruising

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

Steeped in ancient history, Waterford was Ireland’s first city.A Viking city of immense fortifications still evident today.Within the Old City or ‘VikingTriangle’ as its better known, you’ll find Reginald’sTower, Bishop’s Palace and the Medieval Museum. From its harbour quayside, to its narrow streets,Waterford is a joy to stroll at leisure.Watch local craftsmen at work and pick up high-quality souvenirs from the House of Waterford Crystal.As evening falls a great traditional Irish entertainment scene erupts. 6 City Breaks Irish Whiskey Museum (c) Gareth Byrne Failte Ireland Long Room Trinity College (c) Rob Durston Failte Ireland National Museum of Ireland (c)Rob Durston Failte Ireland Titanic Belfast Belfast City Hall (c) Brian Morrrison- Tourism Ireland. Dublin 3 nights B&B from £249 Belfast 3 nights B&B from £269 From its past literary heroes, to its present day lively pubs, soak up the vibrant atmosphere of Dublin, and you’ll find warm hospitality - not usually associated with a city scene. Explore its historic buildings and stories, its grand Georgian architecture and sites of interest spanning back to its origins as aViking settlement.

It’s a city of depth; from its central River Liffey, its vast parklands and Port of Dublin, yet it’s all quite compact and easily navigated, where locals will accompany you along your way. So, paint the town red, drink a pint of the black stuff and you’re sure to feel as green as the natives.

Rich in maritime heritage, Belfast’s shipbuilding past leaves a lasting mark on the cityscape, notably the white-star inspiredTitanic Belfast exhibition structure which holds the impressive title as the World’s Leading Tourist Attraction.The intriguing political story of Belfast can be heard through visits to Crumlin Road Gaol, the parliament building of Stormont, or the edgier street art peace murals with which the city is synonymous.There is also a great food and shopping scene here, and when in town be sure to check out the National Trust pub -Crown Liquor Saloon for a refreshing pint or point of view.

Return ferry crossing from the UK included in the city breaks Waterford 3 nights Half & Board from £175

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

Quay St Galway (c) Tourism Ireland 01708 802 350 Blarney Castle Cork (c) Failte Ireland 7 City Breaks Jamesons Distillery Cork (c) chris hill - Tourism Ireland Guildhall Derry (c) Gardiner Mitchell - Tourism Ireland Titanic Experience Cobh Cork (c) Failte Ireland Cork 3 nights B&B from £190 Galway 3 nights B&B from £219 Derry 3 nights Half & Board from £285 The bohemian west coast city of Galway is where you’ll encounter the ‘most Irish’ of Irelands cities. It has a thriving arts scene, youthful student population and a character untouched. Revel in the street buskers on Eyre Square, the second-hand book stores, the brightly painted pubs with bright-eyed Irish pub landlords awaiting your custom.

It’s lengthy coastal promenade stretches all the way to the seaside area of Salthill, a great way to take in the rugged west Ireland shoreline.

Derry-London Derry, so good they’ve named it twice! Since being named UK City of Culture in 2013, the city has become accustomed to hosting a cultural entertainment programme, so to say there’s always something happening in Derry, is no exaggeration. Its circuit of 17th century city walls remain completely intact, in fact it’s one of the finest examples found throughout Europe and gives a great prospective of the city’s numerous church steeples. Other highlights include the Peace Bridge, the Guildhall and the CraftVillage, located right in the heart of the city.

Locally known as ‘the real capital of Ireland’, Cork is fast becoming one of the hippest young cities in Europe, yet it retains a traditional Irish atmosphere, brimming with cosy Irish pubs, live music sessions featuring a mix of trad, rock and jazz genres.Add to this the high quality local food offering, from having West Cork on its doorstep, and you can definitely see the attraction.

City highlights include the gothic St Finbar’s Cathedral and the 18th century covered English Market. Return ferry crossing from the UK included in the city breaks

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

Twin Capital Cities The Chef - Smug Christchurch nave - Dublin Whiskey Museum - Dublin (c) Brian Morrisson/ Tourism Ireland Girl by Irony & Coral by Louis Massai Girl by Irony & Coral by Louis Massai 8 Twin City Centre Only two hours apart, Dublin and Belfast make an ideal twin centre break. Take in the vibrancy of Dublin’s streets and historic Belfast city; over the last number of years a host of new visitor experiences have been established so there is a great mix of traditional and new to fill in your touring programme. See mummified animal remains in the crypts of Dublin’s Christchurch; follow the fascinating story of the whiskey industry in Ireland - tastings included, at the Irish Whiskey Museum, visit the world’s number one visitor attraction - Titanic Belfast and discover the famous eye-opening wall murals of Belfast in the Cathedral Quarter.

Which ever city itinerary you wish to follow, please consult our tailor-made service for all your group’s requirements. Package Includes from £449 • 4 nights Half Board accommodation: 2 nights Dublin - Academy Plaza 2 nights Belfast - Europa Hotel • Return ferry crossing from the UK • Premium entry to the Irish Whiskey Museum with 4 tastings • Guided tour of Christchurch Cathedral & Belfry •Visit to theTitanic Belfast •Walking street art tour of Belfast Murals in Cathedral Quarter See pages 28 and 18 respectively for hotel details Atrium (c) Rob Durston Titanic Belfast

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

West Cork FoodTrail 01708 802 350 English Market Cork (c) Failte Ireland 9 Tastes of Ireland Ireland’s gourmet capital, Kinsale, sits on the southern tip of the country in County Cork, surrounded by the freshest of seafood and with the renowned local artisan food producers ofWest Cork on its doorstep. Kinsale’s narrow winding streets are home to brightly coloured buildings, some with Dutch architectural influence, a delight to stroll around with views of the marina below. The food offering here will not disappoint, stemming from a small few entrepreneurs in the 60’s, today a strong Good Food Circle of restaurateurs.

The area has also played host to many historical battles with fort remnants and much more to explore.

Carrigaline Court**** Co. Cork •At heart of bustling town centre • Contemporary bar • Bistro • Jacuzzi • 20m indoor pool• Steam room & sauna • Gym• 91 bedrooms•Tea & coffee facilities • Lift to all floors • Free coach parking The shores of northwest Ireland are fast becoming known for their surf, seaweed and seafood. Indeed the Irish have long included dried seaweed, known as ‘dillisk’, within their diet and carrageen moss too which is recommended to remedy flu. We explore the upcoming Sligo FoodTrail.An expert-led sea foraging trip, the thrill of Strandhill, hands-on bread- making session, the art of brewing craft beer in pure remoteness to the refined afternoon tea setting in the homelands of poet WBYeats.

Glasshouse Hotel * Sligo • Only 4* star hotel in centre • Overlooking river •Architecturally interesting • Chic interiors •AA Rosette restaurant • 2 Bars • Gym • 116 bedrooms •Tea & coffee station• Lift to all floors Sligo FoodTrail Brewery Tour White Hag Package Includes from £435 • 4 nights Half Board accommodation at Glasshouse Hotel, Sligo • Return ferry crossing from the UK • Sourdough bread making workshop & gardening tutorial •Tour &Tasting at White Hag Craft Beer Brewery, Ballymote • Lissadell House, Garden & Exhibition tour & afternoon tea •Trip to Coney Island - seaweed walk & talk session lead by expert harvester • Lunch at Strandhill’s award winningTra Ban Restaurant followed by free time to pursue beach related activities Optional Extras: Perhaps aVoya Seaweed bath or Surf Lesson Cashel Blue (c) Tony Pleavin / Tourism Ireland Seaweed Foraging (c) Failte Ireland Package Includes from £415 • 4 nights accommodation at Carrigaline Court Hotel (3 nights Half Board & 1 night B&B) • Return ferry crossing from the UK • Gourmet seafood meal in Kinsale • Entry to Charles Fort •Tour &Tasting at Jamesons Whiskey Distillery • Free visit to the historic indoor English Market in Cork City •Visit & demo at Cork Butter Museum • Clonakilty FlavoursTasting (2 hrs)

Inspiring coach travel - Independent Coach Travel

Connaught Lorem ipsum Ulster Ulster to the north of the island encompasses Northern Ireland and three Republican counties. Its coast is rugged. Curved inlets on the Wild Atlantic Way reveal Donegal’s secluded beaches and Ireland’s premier fishing port. The coast continues to enchant and from its northern tip you can experience some of the darkest skies in Europe, owing to the absence of light pollution from anywhere north or west of this spot. Then the Giant’s Causeway jumps out, its rock columns a geological wonder; nearby the exhilarating Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge crossing beckons the brave of heart.

The region is also home to Ireland’s largest lake and has numerous gentle mountains, ideal for hiking.

With two fascinating cities on the rise, each evolving all the time, Ulster is a vibrant place yet to fulfil its full potential. In short Belfast now holds the world’s number one visitor attraction, the Titanic Belfast and Derry is where you will find one of the best-preserved examples of a circuit walled city within Europe and thriving cultural events scene. From Sligo’s surf scene to the Connemara coastline, the Connaught region is a delight to explore. It’s got sandy beaches in abundance, each holding their own charm. Home to Ireland’s largest island, Achill, which is connected by road to the mainland, and home to the remote, yet inhabited, Aran Islands off Galway Bay.

The beauty of the Connemara National Park is widely known, breeding ground of the distinct Connemara pony, however the region also has a peatland protected national park of Ballycroy and the oldest known fields system in the world, the archaeological site of Ceide Fields.The eastern part of this region is lakelands and source of Ireland’s largest river – The Shannon. The Twelve Pins Mountain Range and Croagh Patrick, associated with Ireland’s patron saint, are ideal for rambling and hiking. Galway City embraces a bohemian vibe with a lively arts scene and youthful student population.The heritage town of Westport also makes a great base for those looking for a lively and hospitable visit. 10 Regional Information

01708 802 350 11 This region has not been branded – Ireland’s Ancient East for nothing! Here you will find passage tombs predating the pyramids,Viking strongholds, castles and country houses in abundance as well as treasured artefacts from all around the country at the National Museum of Ireland in Dublin. Yes Dublin, the Irish capital extends the warmest of welcomes to all those who visit as they bank more and more awards as the ‘Friendliest City’.The entire region of Leinster has a great cultural scene, which the locals are keen for visitors to foster during their stay.

Leinster’s physcial features include the picturesque Wicklow Mountains, home to the sanctuary of Glendalough and the lesser known landsape of the Bog of Allen the largest preserved peatland in Ireland - wonderfully uncovered at Lullymore Discovery Park. Lorem ipsum Lorem ipsum Atrue sporting corner of Ireland, from the native Gaelige Games to the region’s rugby heroes, Munster is a riveting place. It got a great food scene too; with Ireland’s gourmet capital of Kinsale within its bounds in addition to the city of Cork, known to locals as the real capital of Ireland, as well as the medieval city of Limerick which sits at the mouth of Ireland’s largest river,The Shannon.

This province is also where you’ll find some of the leading visitor attractions in the country - the Ring of Kerry and the Cliffs of Moher. The National Park of Killarney is home to the highest mountain range in Ireland,the Macgillycuddy Reeks and the region’s temperate climate has allowed glorious gardens to flourish throughout. It also has an abundance of wildlife from resident dolphins, whales, seals colonies and puffins off its shores.

Lorem ipsum Lorem ipsum Leinster Munster Regional Information

Malin Head 12 Galway Bay Hotel * Salthill • Situated along Salthill Promenade • Nearby Blue Flag beach • Gastro Pub • Seaweed Spa treatments (extra charge) • 2 restaurants Lobster Pot /Harvest with award winning lunch carvery • Pool & gym • 153 bedrooms •Tea & coffee tray Castlecourt Hotel * Westport • Located in the heart of Westport • Courtyard dining area• Orchard Restaurant • Bistro & Bar • Spa Sula • 20m indoor pool • Jacuzzi • Steam room & sauna • Gym •157 bedrooms Allingham Arms *** Bundoran • Seafront Wild Atlantic Way location • Restaurant• Ultra-cool café bar • Coolmore Bar • 132 bedrooms •Tea & coffee station Inishowen Gateway *** Buncrana • Overlooking the sandy shores of Lough Swilly • Positioned on the edge of the seaside resort of Buncrana •Tea & coffee tray • Seagrass Spa & Wellbeing Centre (pool, jacuzzi) • Peninsula Restaurant & LoughView Bar • 80 bedrooms • Lift to all floors Falls Hotel * Ennistymon For hotel details see page 23 Dingle Skellig * Dingle • Dingle Bay views •AA Rosette winning restaurant • Conservatory-style dining area • Blaskets Bar• Cocktail lounge • Peninsula Spa • Jacuzzi • Eucalyptus steam room • 117 bedrooms• Lift to all floors Celtic Ross Hotel *** Rosscarberry • Perched on Wild Atlantic Way Headland • Stunning coastal views • Kingfisher Bar & Bistro • Large comfortable sea-view lounge • Pool, sauna, steamroom & gym • 66 newly decorated bedrooms •Tea & coffee tray • Free coach parking What to expect from the North Atlantic Way? Since Tourism Ireland have reinvented this coastal road network, it seems to appear somewhere on everyone’s bucket list! The stunning coastal scenery of white sand beaches,rocky cliffs and headlands alongside rising mountains, means that every turn of the road uncovers a new delight.

This northern part of the route passes through many Gaeltacht ‘Irish speaking’ strongholds where traditional culture goes hand in hand with new innovative craftsmanship. Hosting a thriving festival scene, you’re almost guaranteed to find live music brimming from local pubs practically every night of the week, all year long.

Package Includes from £615 • 7 nights accommodation along the Wild Atlantic Way Galway Bay Hotel (1night B&B) Castlecourt Hotel (2 nights Half Board) Allingham Arms (2 nights Half Board) Inishowen Gateway (2 nights Half Board) • Return ferry crossing from UK • Free time in Galway city • Entry to Kylemore Abbey • Fjord Cruise on Killary Harbour • Free time Westport ‘Heritage’Town (opt bike hire along Greenway) •Afternoon tea at Ashford Castle • Stop atYeats Grave and Glencar Waterfall (optional hiking) • Entry to Beleek Pottery • Free time in DonegalTown / Donegal CraftVillage •Visit to Slieve League Cliffs.

• Entry to Daniel O’DonnellVisitor Centre •Tour of Fanad Lighthouse • Entry to Glenveagh National Park •Visit to Mallin Head, chance see the northern lights ( Feb/ Mar) • Stop at Granian an AileachVisitor Centre with ring fort site visit The southern end of Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way is a mixture of well established tourist points with mass appeal - from dramatic coastal cliffs and island hopping, Killarney’s lakes and mountains and the gardens and gourmet food offering of West Cork. Sip Irish coffee in the place where it was created, chance coastal wildlife including dolphins, seals and puffins and taste good local food in Ireland’s Gourmet Capital.Take a fresh look at this old favourite!

Multi Centre Touring North Atlantic Way South Atlantic Way Package Includes from £745 • 9 nights accommodation along the Wild Atlantic Way: Celtic Ross (3 nights Half Board) Dingle Skellig (3 nights Half Board) Falls Hotel, Ennistymon (2 nts Half Board) Galway Bay Hotel (1night B&B) • Return ferry crossing from UK • Entry to Charles Fort • Gourmet seafood meal in Kinsale • Entry to Mizen HeadVisitor Centre • Boat trip to gardens of Garnish Island and Seal Colony • Eco boat trip of Skelligs • Entry to Muckross House • Jaunting car ride through Killarney National Park • Dingle Dolphin Boat tour • Entry to Foynes Flying Boat Museum (guided) with Irish Coffee Demonstration • Shannon ferry crossing •Aran Island tour/return ferry with light pub lunch andTrad music • Entry to Cliffs of MoherVisitor Centre • Free time in Galway City Our Selected Hotels _ North Atlantic Way _ South Atlantic Way Malin Head Galway Kinsale 1 2 3 1 2 3 Fungi (c) Failte Ireland Aurora Borealis Malin Head (c) Michael Gill / Tourism Ireland

Slieve League (c) Martin Fleming / Failte Ireland 01708 802 350 13 Multi Centre Touring Skelligs (c) Failte Ireland Tourism Ireland. Kylemore Abbey Fanadhead Lighthouse Donegal Kinsale TownCentre (c) Gemma Flanagan / Failte Ireland Mizen Head (c) Arthur Ward - Tourism Ireland - ART

D iscover two counties with extremely strong ties to one another in the northwest of Ireland – Darling Donegal & Derry. Donegal in the Republic and Derry in the North never let a matter of currency come between them. Touring possibilities here are endless with the added bonus of stunning rural scenery around every bend of your journey.

Discover the walled city of Derry, the sheer heights of Europe’s highest sea-cliffs and clan castles of Donegal. Uncover this relatively undiscovered corner of the Emerald Isle, offering a great visitor experience. 14 A coastline of geological curves, myths and legends, brave opportunities and paths of the past, Ireland’s Causeway Coast has it all. Be guided along the region’s number one attraction, the Giants Causeway; hearing geological and mythical viewpoints. Perhaps brave the iconic Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge erected by fishermen 350 years ago or the Gobblin’s coastal pathway a recently revived tourist attraction from the turn of the 19th century.

Ballygally Castle Hotel **** Ballygally • 400 year old Castle Hotel • Sea and mountain views •Walled garden and stream within castle walls • Garden Restaurant • 54 bedrooms (some with beams) •Tea & coffee tray • Lift • coach parking • 79 individually decorated bedrooms •Tea & coffee tray • Lift to all floors Package Includes from £425 • 4 nights accommodation at Ballygally Castle Hotel (3 nights Halk Board /1night B&B) • Return ferry crossing from UK • Giants CausewayVisitor Centre and guided causeway walk • Carrick-a-rede rope bridge crossing • Goblins Coastal Walk - guided 2.5 hrs • Free stop at the Dark Hedges - beech tree lined roadway used in Game of Thrones • Day at leisure in Belfast Touring Jackson’s Hotel & Leisure Centre**** Ballybofey • 70 years of hospitality• Woodland setting • Overlooking River Finn • Heated indoor pool • Jacuzzi, gym, steam room • Snug Bar • Garden Restaurant • Newly refurbished • 50 bedrooms • Tea & coffee station Package Includes from £265 •4 nights Half Board at Jackson’s Hotel, •Return ferry crossing from the UK •Guided walk of Derry City Walls •Visit to the National Heritage Downhill Demesne site with walking trail to the clifftop MussendenTemple •Visit to the ring fort site and visitor centre of Granian an Aileach •Entry to Glenveagh National Park, castle tour with shuttle bus •Entry to Donegal Castle & free time in to explore the heritage town •Visit to the Slieve League cliffs Darling Donegal & Derry Giant Footsteps on the Causeway Coast Giants Casuseway shot credit Tourism Ireland Chris Hill Mussenden Temple, Downhill Demesne (code poet -

01708 802 350 15 C ounty Wicklow is often described as the ‘Garden of Ireland’ with beautiful mountain scenery. The lush vegetation and stunning landscapes have attracted wealthy gentry to build country retreats here. The choice of wonderful, diverse gardens has made this the top Irish destination for any horticulturalist. The jewel in the crown is the Powerscourt Estate which makes a great stop for local craft shopping, exquisite gardens and its quirkiness with a historic pet cemetery. Package Includes from £309 • 4 nights Half Board at Summerhill House Hotel • Return ferry crossing from UK • Entry to Powerscourt House & Gardens • Entry to Mount Usher Gardens •Visit to the Irish National Stud with Japanese Gardens •Visit to Glendalough MountainValley Monasteric Settlement Summerhill House Hotel*** Enniskerry • Country House Hotel • Situated opposite Powerscourt Gardens •Vintage décor • Gardens with woodland driveway •Welcome drink • Porterage • Rainforest Spa • Restaurant & Lounge • 84 bedrooms Touring B est known for its wild and rugged beauty, West Cork’s location along a stretch of the Atlantic Gulf Stream means the climate here remains mild and temperate, springing buds and flora, rare shrubbery and no less than 22 manicured gardens within this trail.Take a truly relaxing break and couple garden visits on the south west coast of Ireland, where you may be surprised to find an exotic Bamboo Park, along with leisurely afternoon teas for some of life’s little pleasures.

Wicklow Mountains & Gardens of Ireland West Cork GardenTrail Celtic Ross Hotel *** Rosscarberry • Perched on Wild Atlantic Way Headland • Stunning coastal views • Kingfisher Bar & Bistro • Large comfortable sea-view lounge • Pool, sauna, steamroom & gym • 66 newly decorated bedrooms •Tea & coffee tray • Free coach parking Bantry Gardens © Chris Hill Tourism Ireland Glendalough Wicklow Mts (c) Brian Morrison / Tourism Ireland Package Includes from £285 • 4 nights Half Board at Celtic Ross Hotel • Return standard ferry crossing from UK • 3 day West Cork GardenTrail pass • Visit to Dereen & Bamboo Park Gardens • Visit Bantry House & Gardens with guided tour of house • Stop at Drombeg Stone Circle (Ireland’s best preserved) & free time for lunch at picturesque village of Glandore • Garden visit to private island estate on Inish Beg (accessible by road) • Visit to Glenview Gardens & Hobbits Hse • Visit to Fernhill House Gardens with afternoon tea • Free time in Clonakilty • Visit to Model RailwayVillage including train ride

Arthur Guinness grew up in Co. Kildare bordering Dublin to the east. At the age of 27, Arthur inherited the sum of £100 from his Godfather the Archbishop of Cashel, a sizeable sum in those days. He spotted the potential to create a brewery by the river in Lexlip. It took several years to establish with the help of his brother Richard, and so it was there, that the Guinness brewing empire was born. In Lexlip, Arthur also bought the lease of an area along the main street to createThe Mall, designed similarly to Dublin’s O’ Connell Street, a tree-lined avenue set back from the road.

From this success,Arthur gained confidence, and left his brother in charge of the Lexlip brewery in order to pursue an operation in Dublin itself.

He bought an existing but run down brewery on the now famous site at St James Gate. An excellent choice location, as at the time the Grand Canal terminated at a basin by St. James Street. Every brewery needs supplies of grain and fresh water and the convenience of having the Grand Canal nearby helped the business to expand. Arthur lived on the premises for a while and brewed all types of beer including dark beer known as porter’s ale or porter. The colour was obtained by including a proportion of malt within the mash along with the ordinary pale malt. Experimenting with the preparation of ingredients led to the creation of what is now considered the world’s number one stout; a drink he was so proud of that he stamped his name on it – Guinness.

Prepared in a similar fashion to coffee, the dark colour of Guinness is achieved through roasted malted barley. Arthur Guinness died aged 78, leaving the business to his son Arthur II; he is buried on the heights of Oughterard Cemetery, Co. Kildare along with his wife Olivia, who bore him 21 children.The Guinness Corporation went on from strength to strength becoming the largest brewery in Ireland in 1833 and in 1886 was quoted on the London Stock Exchange. The company gained a reputation within the city of Dublin as one of the best employment opportunities around, it provided financial, medical and recreational benefits to employees as well as maintaining a strong sense of its own social responsibility to the community at large.

Among the initiatives were free healthcare for employees and their families, the famous Guinness pension, free meals for school children of retirees, paid annual holidays, free family train tickets for excursions and of course a beer allowance of two pints of Guinness® per day. In fact the social side of the company grew so much that formal Guinness Ambulance Division was established. In addition to all this, Guinness salaries were 10 to 20 per cent above the Dublin average. Indeed, Dublin mothers would encourage their daughters to marry a Guinness man for it was considered as a step up in society and a secure future any for their children and their further family.

The world never tired of the taste, it seems, as today the success of Guinness is still evident worldwide with 10 million glasses consumed every single day. A fascinating story of a man, his vision, his inspirational belief that has brought benefits to many down through the ages and has become a modern-day phenomenon. Guinness Storehouse - Tara Morgan - Fáilte Ireland 16 Touring 16

Day 2 Equipped with map of the newly created Arthur Guinness Way, a walking trail around Northeast Kildare (or alternative optional bike hire); you will embark on a walk, 16km in its entirety, rambling for 3-3.5 hours (although partial route possible).

Following in the footsteps of Arthur Guinness from childhood to business tycoon; your first stop will be in Celbridge where Arthur grew up. Arriving at Castletown House enjoy the inescapable parkland and River Liffey views, this was the earliest and largest Palladian style estate in Ireland, which the Guinness family helped to rescue from demolition. Take some time for cafe refreshments before commencing a guided tour where you’ll see the only fully intact 18th century print room left in Ireland and walk underneath decadent Murano Glass Chandeliers. Now 5km along, from here you can continue to Hazelhatch to join the Grand Canal, which was used to transport Guinness into Dublin, passing along grassy towpaths, flora and fauna, and the enchanting Lyon’s Estate.

At Oughterard, meaning high place, from where you will get spectacular views over the plain of Kildare, Dublin and the region of Leinster, lies Arthur Guinness’ final resting place; a relatively easy climb to the cemetery to conclude the trail.

Day 3 In Dublin today, to sample the ‘dark stuff’ itself. We commence at the Guinness Storehouse for a guided tour taking you through the production process, followed by a tutorial on the art of pulling the perfect pint!!Top this off with panoramic city views at Gravity Bar. Next, to Grand Canal for a Guinness Barge experience (2 hrs) under cutting stone bridges and passing ancient locks, operated in the same manner today as back in 1798 when this canal was used to transport Guinness around the country.Aboard this 1922 Guinness Barge replica you’ll enjoy a leisurely afternoon tea (chocolate Guinness cupcakes included!), as well as short commentaries and the opportunity to get up on deck and see first-hand the barge navigate the locks.

Finish the day with a guided tour of Dublin with a Guinness tilt of course! Hear of how the Guinness corporation was well loved by city folks and how the company looked after its workers, even to the extent that there is still a Guinness ambulance in operation on the city streets to this day.A business empire, world-renowned, etched into visitors vision of Ireland and etched into the history of the Ireland’s Ancient East. Day 4 Depart for your onward journey. Tour Itinerary: Day 1 Make your way to Lexlip, Co. Kildare, about a fifteen-minute drive from Dublin city centre and the birthplace of Guinness! In fact, your base for this tour is the Courtyard Hotel, located right in the town centre and built on the original site of the Guinness brewing empire.

Featuring charming original stonework and hospitality to match, it won’t take you long to feel right at home. Courtyard Hotel**** Lexlip •Historic site of Arthur Guinness’ first brewery • Original stonework •Contemporary design •Courtyard dining •Arthur’s Bar •River Liffey setting •Popular local dining venue •40 bedrooms •Tea & coffee station Arthur’s Bar is truly the perfect place to enjoy a pint! Alternatively relax in the hotel courtyard or indeed enjoy the night away at Arthur Live (Thurs- Sun nights) for full programme of live band entertainment.

Guinness Barge night time Arthur Guinness Trail Leixlip Celbridge Hazelhatch Ardcolugh Oughterard 0km 5km 8km 13km 16km Your group can partake in as much or as little of the walking trail as you wish to suit your group’s needs Castletownhouse (c) Tourism Ireland macmillan media This Guinness-inspired short break explores the rise of the world dominating stout which had become almost emblematic in our vision of Ireland.Tracing the footsteps of its founder Arthur Guinness, whose story often surprises, embark on a journey of Dublin and its surrounds over 250 years ago.Visit Ireland’s first Palladian estate, take a journey on an ancient canal barge, step out on a rural walking trail and of course enjoy a drop of the black stuff at an obligatory stop at the Guinness Storehouse - now Ireland’s number one visitor attraction.

01708 802 350 17 Touring 3 nights Half Board & package from £215 01708 802 350 17 18 A lmost 175 years on, the Irish Famine and Emigration story still resounds in the very fabric of Irish society, a lost generation that will never be forgotten.On this emotive tour,we visit the Emigration Quarter of Dublin, an infamous famine ship, and a new 21st century visitor attraction EPIC, telling the story of Ireland’s Diaspora and how they changed the world. Venture on to JFK’s Kennedy homestead, visit the last port of call of the infamous Titanic and take a prison island tour.

Academy Plaza *** Dublin For hotel details see page 27 Maldron Hotel*** Cork • City Centre location •Newly refurbished • Grain & Grill Restaurant • Pool & Gym • 101 bedrooms • Tea & coffee tray • Lift to all floors Package Includes from £375 • 4 nights Half Board accommodation Academy Plaza, Dublin - 2 nights Maldron Hotel Cork - 2 nights • Return ferry crossing from the UK • Visit the Jeanie JohnstonTall Ship & Famine Story • Entry to Epic Ireland - New attraction • Visit the Kennedy Homestead • John F Kennedy Arboretum visit • Entry to CobhTitanic Experience • Guided tour/transport to Spike Island Prison, Cork Twin City Centre With the recent centenary of the Irish Rebellion having just passed an examination of the setting leading up to events of the 1916 Easter Rising makes a fascinating political tour.

Starting in Dublin where the battle raged, look around the new commemorative GPO Witness Exhibition dedicated to the events of that period. Visit the gravestones of fallen Irish heroes at Glasnevin cemetery and hear first-hand the speech the roused the many to freedom. Enroute to Belfast in this alternative twin capital city centre, stop at the Battle of the Boyne where the feud began hundreds of years prior. See the Gaols of Belfast and Dublin where political prisoners were detained, then onto a tour of the beautiful parliamentary building of Stormont where today’s politics is played out.

Package Includes from £439 • 4 nights Half Board accommodation: Academy Plaza Dublin - 2 nights Europa Belfast - 2 nights (Superior rooms) • Return ferry crossing from the UK •Visit to the newly opened GPO Witness History Exhibition • Entry to Kilmainham Gaol • Guided tour of Glasnevin Cemetry & Museum • Entry to the Battle of the BoyneVisitor Centre • Free visit to Stormont Parliament Buildings • Guided tour of Crumlin Road Gaol Academy Plaza *** Dublin For hotel details see page 27 Irish PoliticalTour Europa Hotel**** Belfast •World famous hotel • City central location • Bistro & Bar • Piano Lounge • 272 bedrooms •Tea & coffee tray • Lift to all floors Irish Famine & Emigration Kilmainham Gaol interior (c) DRTA

01708 802 350 19 Touring Killarney is the place that launched a billion postcards. On the Ring of Kerry, it seems everything is worth photographing and its fast becoming an all-year-round destination. Enjoy a picture-perfect jaunting car tour and a cruise on the lakes within Killarney National Park, plus a visit to Muckross House where Queen Victoria stayed. Finish with a boat trip to the Skelligs Islands, recent film location for Star Wars. Package Includes from £339 • 4 nights Half Board accommodation at Killarney Court Hotel • Return ferry crossing from the UK •A jaunting car horse & cart ride from Killarney to Muckross Hse • Guided tour of Muckross House • Eco boat tour of Skelligs • Full day guided tour of Kerry with lunch Killarney Court *** Killarney • 10 minute walk to town •Welcome drink on arrival • Porterage • Bar & Restaurant • Beauty & Rejuvenation Centre • 116 bedrooms •Tea & coffee station Take in the lake-land region of Ireland, with a stay on Lough Erne in beautiful Co.

Fermanagh. Cruise amid tiny islands and castle loughs, taking in stunning landscape, some of which inspired the poet WB Yeats. Also in this terrain sits the global Geopark of Marble Arch, experience a subterranean boat ride within the labyrinth of its impressive caves. Explore the diverse culture of this region through its craftsmanship firsthand and past clan castle visits. Dance to the music of the Irish showband era to capture the spirit of entertainment in rural Ireland throughout the 50’s and 60’s. Package Includes from £385 • 4 nights accommodation at Country Manor House, Fermanagh (1st night B&B & 3 nights Half Board) • Return ferry crossing from the UK • Lady of the Lake Sunset Dinner Cruise • Entry to Beleek Pottery • Entry to the clan castle of Donegal & free time in the surrounding heritage town • Entry to Parkes Castle, Leitrim • Cruise on Lough Gill from Parkes Castle with scenery which inspired WBYeats • Guided visit of Marble Arch Caves with subterranean boat ride in the Global Geopark • Entry to RainbowTea Dance, Glenferran – exhibition on Irish showband memorabilia, tea dance included!

Leitrim & Lakes of Fermanagh Country Manor House**** Killadeas • Lakeside hotel • Family run • 17th century charm •AA Rosette Restaurant • Bar & Bistro • Golf course •Tennis course • Marina • Swimming pool & outdoor hot tub • Jacuzzi, steam room & sauna•78 bedrooms Killarney &The Ring of Kerry Ring of Kerry credit Failte Ireland. Lough Erne - Co Fermanagh (c) Tourism Ireland 20 Our Selected Hotels Landmark Hotel **** Carrick-on-Shannon • Overlooking River Shannon • Riverside restaurant & café • Bar & sports bar • Cocktail, Gin & Whiskey Bar • 51 bedrooms • Tea & coffee station Athlone Springs**** Athlone • 5 minutes from AthloneTown • Cedar Restaurant • Cocktail Bar • 20m swimming pool• Spa treatment rooms • Gym •68 bedrooms •Tea & coffee station Clayton Hotel**** Limerick • Ireland’s tallest hotel • Overlooking River Shannon • Contemporary style décor •Café • Grill Bar & Restaurant• Pool & gym • Sauna & steam room•158 bedrooms • Tea & coffee station • Lift to all floors Package Includes from £645 • 6 nights accommodation: 2nts Half Board Landmark Hotel 2nts Half Board Athlone Springs Hotel, 2nts Clayton Hotel, Limerick: (1night B&B & 1 night Half Board) • Return ferry crossing from the UK • 1 hour cruise on the northern part of River Shannon from Carrick-on-Shannon with tea scone refreshments, commentary & live music • Guided tour of Stokestown Park House, The Irish National Famine Museum •Visit to Ireland’s oldest pub - Sean Bar in Athlone with tour and complimentary Irish coffee • Guided tour of the 13th Century Athlone Castle &Visitor Centre, combined with visit to the visual arts Luan Gallery (across the bridge) • 2 hour mid River Shannon Cruise from Athlone Castle to Clonmacnoise Monastery • Entry to Clonmacnoise Monastery • Entry to King John’s Castle, Limerick • Evening entertainment at Bunratty Castle • Entry to the Flying Boat Museum (guided) with Irish Coffee demonstration in the place where it was created S hannon is Ireland’s largest river;follow the trail from its source in Leitrim all the way to the Shannon Estuary where you will uncover great touring possibilities along its plains.

Take a cruise to an ancient monastic settlement, feast at a castle banquet, raise a glass in Ireland’s, and possibly the worlds, oldest pub or sip Irish coffee in the very place where it was created. Read firsthand the heart-wrench- ing letters of famine evictees sent during darker times uncovered in recent times at Stokestown Park House, so much lies waiting to be discovered throughout the Irish midland counties.

Multi Centre Touring River ShannonTrail Atlantic Ocean Athlone (c) Fennell Photography/ Failte Ireland Foynes Flying Boat Museum (c)Brian Morrison / Tourism Ireland

01708 802 350 21 Multi Centre Touring T his region of Ireland is known to have the best of the Irish weather – make what you will of that accolade; it does, however, have some of the richest touring possibilities.Along this Sunny South East Trail we take in Wexford, Waterford and Cork – a path known well to many operators that use Rosslare ferry port. From grand country houses to ecclesiastical ruins, todays local craftmanship to the historic ships which left these shores; the revered Titanic and the Dunbrody Famine Ship have heart-breaking stories to tell.

Take in beautiful seaside settings, stunning countryside perhaps journey along the newly created Waterford Greenway, a disused rail line trail for hiking and cycling passing 3 viaducts, take time to soak up the beauty of this southern coastal strip of Ireland.

Our Selected Hotels Ferrycarrig Hotel**** Co. Wexford • Overlooking River Slaney Estuary •All rooms with view •Award-winning Reeds Restaurant • Bar • Pool & Gym • Jacuzzi & Spa • Sauna & steam room • 102 bedrooms •Tea & coffee tray • Lift • Free coach parking Treacy’s Hotel*** Waterford See pages 24 Jury’s Inn*** Cork • City centre location • Overlooking River Lee • Restaurant & Bar • 133 bedrooms •Tea & coffee tray • Lift Package Includes from £475 • 6 nights accommodation in Sunny SE Ferrycarrig Hotel - 2 nights Half Board Treacy’s Waterford - 2 nights Half Board Jurys Inn Cork City Centre - 2 nights B&B • Return ferry crossing from the UK • Entry to the grounds and gardens of Wells House with guided costumed house tour and unique afternoon tea experience • Entry to the New RossTapestry • Guided tour of Dunbrody Famine Ship • Factory tour of the House of Waterford Crystal • Free time to explore the newly opened Waterford Greenway coastal walking route (optional bike hire) to the pretty coastal town of Dungarvan • Stop at Ardmore Old Cathedral ruins and round tower •Tour &Tasting at the Jamesons Whiskey Distillery, Midleton • Entry toTitanic Experience Cobh •Visit to Fota Island Wildlife Park • Entry to Fota House,Arboretum and Gardens Sunny South East Waterford Greenway (c) Tourism Ireland Luke Myers.

Ardmore Cathedral (c) Liam Murphy Failte Ireland Fota House interior.

Thoroughbred racehorses are synonymous with Ireland, the rich iron-filled fields found in the neighbouring countryside surrounding Dublin is home to prime racecourses and the Irish National Stud. See living legends up close, some worth in excess of sixty-million euros, a massive sporting industry - and common ground between our two nations. Another element of this fascinating scene is fashion, of course, the racing calendar is also a big social event this end of the water. Unearth the world’s largest collection of Audrey Hepburn dresses, timeless beauty, style and bubbly to be enjoyed by all.

New for 2 Package Includes from £325 •3 nights Half Board at Osprey in Naas •Return ferry crossing from the UK •Guided visit of the National Stud Farm & Japanese Gardens •Prosecco afternoon tea at Newbridge Silverware shopping outlet with tour of the world’s largest Audrey Hepburn dress exhibition at the Style Icon Museum •Visit to Saddlery to watch the production Osprey Hotel * Naas • Contemporary styled • 35 minutes from Dublin • Café Bar & Grill • Osprey Bar • Spa • 20m swimming pool • Sauna & steam room • Gym • 108 bedrooms •Tea & coffee tray In the land of leprechauns, limericks and legends - a nation of storytellers, superstitions and small folk - delve into an alternative tour of the Kerry region.

Fado, fado - long ago, as the story unfolds….. let us transport you back to an age of mystery, an age of whispers an age were legends were born and passed on to this day. Experience mystical stone settings, fairy woodlands, haunting tales and passionate folk theatre played out before your eyes. New for 2019 For group visits in 2019, keep an eye out for the opening of the new Visitor Centre at the Curragh Racecourse - which will bring a brand-new day package for groups to the forum.

Package Includes from £349 • 4 nights Half Board at Killarney Court Hotel •Return ferry crossing from the UK •Ticket to performance at SiamsaTire National FolkTheatre,Tralee •Killarney Ghost BusTour by night (2 hours) •Full day guided tour of mythical Kerry with stops at the Olde Irish setting of the thatched Kerry BogVillage, Rossbeigh Beach in Glenbeigh from where the mythical character of Oisin & Niamh departed this world forTir na Nog (Land of theYouth), onto the ring fort of Cahergall, Derrynane House & tearooms (home the Liberator Daniel O’Connell): grounds include Ogham stone, ring fort in the woods and delightful fairy trail.

•Guided tour of enchanting Lough Gur with visit to Ireland’s largest stone circle and entry to the interpretation centre Killarney Court *** Killarney See page 19 Folklore Galore Mares and Foals Lough Gur (c) Failte Ireland Shannon Development Fado fado (c) Siamsa Tire National Folk Theatre 22 Touring Full Bred Irish