This exciting tour of Ireland is the perfect luxury getaway for you and your family. We understand that planning a family holiday can be stressful, so we take care of everything for you, leaving you free to simply show up and have fun.
From a thrilling tour of Dublin via an amphibious World War II vehicle, to falconry displays and fun-filled farm experiences, this tour is packed with activities that will create cherished memories for you and your family.
Our tour planning team will be on hand throughout the booking process to ensure your itinerary is perfect for the whole family.
Accommodation – Clontarf Castle, Dublin (2 Nights)
Activities – Explore Dublin
Dinner – Fahrenheit, Clontarf Castle
When you land at Dublin Airport, your private chauffeur will be waiting to greet you. They will welcome you to the Emerald Isle, help you with your bags, and make the 20 minute drive to Clontarf Castle in Dublin.
Clontarf Castle will provide you with the warmest Irish welcome to their distinctive luxury hotel. The castle has a rich history, with the first structure on the site being built all the way back in 1172. Many hands have taken ownership of Clontarf in the years since, including the Knights Templar. Nowadays, the designers have done an exquisite job of blending a sleek modern look throughout the historic building.
While it may be in the heart of a busy city, Clontarf Castle sits in a peaceful spot nearby a golf course, St Anne’s Park, and the beautiful Irish Sea.
Having spent some time travelling, the name of the game today is relaxing in preparation for your first full day of touring in the morning. However, if time permits and you’re feeling up to it, you’re more than welcome to start exploring Dublin at your leisure. Perhaps a walk by the seaside will be the perfect remedy after a long journey.
In the evening, you will be dining in the hotel’s two AA Rosette Fahrenheit Restaurant. Located in the original castle walls, Fahrenheit provides a unique dining experience surrounded by stained glass windows and marvellous wood-panelled walls. The menu showcases the best Ireland has to offer and includes Atlantic salmon, Hereford beef, and Wicklow ice cream to finish. There is also a range of fabulous signature cocktails to choose from.
Accommodation – Clontarf Castle, Dublin
Activities – Private Walking Tour of Dublin, Viking Splash Tour
Dinner – Knights Bar, Clontarf Castle
In the morning you will tuck into a hearty Irish breakfast which will serve you well as your first activity today is a private walking tour of Dublin, a city which is absolutely bursting at the seams with enchanting stories.
Your chauffeur will drive you into the heart of the city, where you will be met by your expert tour guide. The tour kicks off with a visit to Dublin Castle which dates back to 1230 after King John of England decided that a castle should be built to defend Dublin. Its location is no accident as it was strategically placed such that the River Poddle would provide a natural barrier against any invading armies.
Serving many purposes over the years – defensive fortress, parliament, court, military base – Dublin Castle has played an instrumental role throughout Ireland’s history, and your guide will go into all the (sometimes grizzly) details.
From there you will wind your way past City Hall and on to Trinity College Library. Here you will get a chance to view some of the treasured artefacts they have on display, such as the Proclamation of the Irish Republic (1916), “Brian Boru’s” harp, which was crafted in the 14th century, and the Book of Kells, which was written in the 9th century. The Book of Kells is written in Latin and is considered one of the most important manuscripts in Christian literature. It was written by Columban monks and depicts the four Gospels.
Next up is a truly unique experience – the Viking Splash Tour. You will climb aboard an amphibious World War II DUKW or “duck” to see more of Dublin, firstly by land but then by water as you splash your way into the Grand Canal basin. With informative commentary throughout, this exciting adventure is fun for the whole family.
Your chauffeur will then return you to Clontarf Castle where this evening you will be dining in the hotel’s Knights Bar.
Accommodation – Ashford Castle, Cong (2 Nights)
Activities – Dún Na Sí Amenity & Heritage Park, Falconry at Ashford Castle
Dinner – The Dungeon, Ashford Castle
First up today is a visit to Dún Na Sí Amenity & Heritage Park. Pronounced “doon na shee”, the park’s name translates to “the fort of the fairies”, a fitting name for the magical day you have in store.
The park is a celebration of the stories and traditions that give Ireland such a rich cultural tapestry. It offers visitors a chance to learn about Irish folklore, and the delicate blend of art installations and natural beauty invite you to relax and reflect.
You will get to glimpse how people lived 100 years ago by visiting recreations of country homes and blacksmith’s forges. There is also a petting zoo, museum, café, playground, butterfly garden, and space to hear traditional Irish music.
In the afternoon you will be treated to a falconry experience at Ashford Castle. Kids and adults alike will be in awe as these magnificent birds of prey swoop and soar and land on your gloved hand.
Ashford Castle will also be your home for the next two nights, and what a home it is. Words really do struggle to do justice to the grandeur and beauty of Ashford Castle, which is surrounded by pristinely kept grounds and sits on the banks of Lough (loch) Corrib.
There are plenty of activities on offer at Ashford Castle, including lake cruises, fishing, tennis, golf, clay pigeon shooting, and a magnificent spa to relax in.
Dinner this evening will be served in The Dungeon. Sitting on the lower ground floor and lavishly furnished, The Dungeon specialises in rich dishes such as their traditional beef and Guinness stew.
Accommodation – Ashford Castle, Cong
Activities – Brigit’s Garden, Galway, Corrib Cruise
Dinner – George V, Ashford Castle
Day 4 begins with a trip to Brigit’s Garden in Roscahill. Here you will go on a sensory journey through the seasonal cycle of Celtic festivals, beginning with Samhain, and working your way through Imbolc, Bealtaine, and Lughnasa. These festivals celebrate the different stages of life, from conception and birth, through growing old, to death, and are a celebration of the magical journey of life.
On your way you will hear stories of Celtic myth, and how the gardens are a visual interpretation of what they mean. There is a profound sense of peace in these gardens, so take your time and enjoy living in the moment. There are art and energy installations, a stunning thatched roofed roundhouse, and a discovery trail and playground for kids to explore. If you’re looking to reconnect with nature, why not head out on a forest bathing walk.
From there you will be taken to Galway for a chance to soak up the atmosphere of this energetic city. Brightly coloured shopfronts, street performers, supremely talented musicians, and lively cafes and bars combine to bring an energy and buzz to Galway’s labyrinthine streets.
Up next you will return to Ashford Castle to head out on a cruise across Lough Corrib. You will be joined on board by your guide, Patrick, who will delight you with the fascinating folklore surrounding this iconic lough. Your trip includes a visit to The Old Steamers Quay and you will also pass by Lord Ardiluan’s Obelisk, a tribute to an influential Irish politician and philanthropist.
This evening you will dine in the George V Dining Room, a marvellous sight to behold with detailed wood panelling and stunning Waterford Crystal chandeliers adorning the ceiling. Please note, gentlemen will be required to wear a dinner jacket.
Accommodation – Dromoland Castle, Newmarket-On-Fergus (1 Night)
Activities – Burren National Park, Burren Farm Experience, Cliffs of Moher
Dinner – Earl of Thomond, Dromoland
After another delicious breakfast your driver will take you to Burren National Park for a chance to explore this unique wilderness. Often described as “otherworldly”, you will soon realise this is an apt description as the vast expanses of exposed limestone rock make it look like something from another planet entirely. Indeed, the name Burren comes from the Irish “Boíreann”, which means “rocky place”. The limestone here was formed by sediment settling to the bottom of a tropical sea which covered nearly all of Ireland 350,000,000 years ago.
However, don’t be fooled into thinking Burren equals barren, as there is an abundance of wildlife and rare plants to enjoy. Keep an eye out for peregrine falcons, hen harriers, pine martens, feral goats, foxes, red squirrels, viviparous lizards, and butterflies.
Up next is a trip to Burren Farm Experience where you will learn all about traditional Irish beef farming. Children will love the guided tour sitting atop hay bales on the back of the farm’s tractor and trailer. There is also an old ring fort, ruined settlement, a forest, and Shantaghphubble Chapel to explore.
You will then make your way to the Cliffs of Moher, one of Ireland’s most popular tourist destinations, which sit high above the dramatic coastline of West Clare. The views across the Atlantic and Aran Islands are spectacular, so be sure to take your camera with you today! A unique visitor centre, carved into the rock in the style of a Hobbit-burrow, provides a space to learn more about the cliffs. O’Brien’s Tower marks the highest point of the cliffs, a staggering 702 feet above the thundering sea below.
Your accommodation this evening is Dromoland Castle which has been providing visitors with the finest place to stay since the 16th century. Set on a 500-acre estate and boasting its own golf course, Dromoland Castle is the height of luxury.
Dinner will be served in the Earl of Thomond Restaurant where you can tuck into yellowfin tuna tartare, roast Burren lamb, Kelly Rock oysters, and Irish lobster.
Accommodation – Lyrath Estate, Kilkenny (2 Nights)
Activities – Craggaunowen, Limerick, Bunratty Castle
Dinner – Yew, Lyrath Estate
First up today you will be taken to Craggaunowen. Here you can learn what it was like to live in the Bronze Age, with an immersive experience exploring a recreated Crannog, ancient island dwellings which were built on lakes or marshland so as to be easier to defend from attackers.
There was little privacy back then, as a single room formed the living area where people cooked, slept, and made everything they needed to get by using ancient craft techniques. Rather than a front door, animal hides were used to shield the entrance from the elements, though the clever design of having only one entrance meant that that was usually enough to keep out the wind and rain.
Be sure to make the trip to Craggaunowen Castle nearby which stood in ruins for much of its life but has been painstakingly renovated to allow visitors to enjoy the many artifacts housed inside.
You will then visit Limerick, which sits on the winding banks of the River Shannon. Highlights here include King John’s Castle, St Mary’s Cathedral, and the Treaty Stone upon which was carved the Treaty of Limerick that marked the official surrender of Limerick to William of Orange.
From there it is just a short journey to Bunratty Castle and the adjoining Bunratty Folk Park. The spot on which the castle is built has been occupied since the Vikings conquered parts of Ireland and has since been home to countless Irish nobility. While it did fall into disrepair eventually, Bunratty Castle received significant investment and renovation work in the 1960’s which has restored it to its former glory.
The Folk Park is a collection of buildings typical to life in 19th century Ireland, with a drapery, pottery shop, post office, doctor’s house, and pub. This allows you to experience living in an entirely different era of Irish history, while kids will find endless fun on the fairy trail, walled garden, Viking playground, and animal enclosure with donkeys, ducks, deer, and goats.
Tonight, you will stay at Lyrath Estate in Kilkenny where dinner will be served in the double AA Rosette Yew Restaurant. Floor to ceiling windows flood the space with natural light and provide idyllic views out to the pristine gardens – the perfect setting for a relaxing dinner after another fun-filled day.
Accommodation – Lyrath Estate, Kilkenny
Activities – Craggaunowen, Limerick, Bunratty Castle
Dinner – Yew, Lyrath Estate
Your final day of touring begins with a visit to Kilkenny, a city which blurs the boundaries between old and new. There is a distinct feel to Kilkenny, also known as the “Marble City”, due to many of its beautiful buildings being made from local Kilkenny marble. With cobbled streets and countless winding alleyways, it would be easy to spend the entire day just wandering around this magical medieval city.
If you want to learn more about Kilkenny’s past, the Medieval Mile Museum is the spot for you. While if you prefer admiring stunning old architecture, be sure to take a trip to Rothe House and Gardens or The Black Abbey.
However, the pick of the bunch is Kilkenny Castle, a huge 800 year old fortress which has been remoulded many times over its intriguing past. It was originally built as a strategic defensive location not long after the Norman’s invaded Ireland. The castle was no stranger to battles over the following centuries. Oliver Cromwell laid siege to it in 1650, and during the Irish Civil War, Republicans took shelter as machine gun fire rained down from outside, causing major damage to the exterior walls.
Significant additions and redesign during the Victorian era repurposed Kilkenny Castle as a luxurious abode for noble families, and in the 20th century it was opened as a visitor attraction.
From there you will head to Castlecomer Discovery Park which, kids and adults alike will be delighted to know, boasts Ireland’s longest zip line. Thrill seekers will love testing their fear of heights on the Octagon High Ropes Course, climbing wall, and Skywalk challenge. For those who prefer keeping their feet on the ground, you can try your hand at archery or axe throwing, as well as plenty of walking trails. Kayaking and canoeing are also available, and you can grab some lunch at the Canopy café in the Elf Village.
Dinner this evening will be served in the Grill and Bar Restaurant on the mezzanine level of Lyrath Estate. There is an extensive menu and after an afternoon of exciting adventure (possibly throwing axes) you may well have built up an appetite to take on the 1200g Tomahawk steak.
Transport – Executive Vehicle & Private Chauffeur
All good things must come to an end. Your chauffeur will pick you up from Lyrath Estate, take you to Dublin Airport, and wish you a fond farewell.
Slán go fóill!