September 6, 2016
Southern Ireland Tours (11 nights/ 12 days)
Written By Naomi Sheehy
Southern Ireland Tours
(12 nights/ 11 days)
This quiet & relaxing trip takes you off the beaten track to experience some genuine culture and regional food. Contact us to discover a beautiful part of the country. See also our Ireland Food Tour for southern Ireland tour itineraries.
Day 1 – Arrive in Dublin, settle into your Dublin city hotel
Day 2 – Dublin city sightseeing day
Day 3 – Cork to Kinsale – Blarney Castle, Jameson Experience, Titanic Experience, Charlesfort and Kinsale.
Day 4 – Cork City sightseeing day
Day 5 – Kinsale to Baltimore –Wild Atlantic Way coastal drive.
Day 6 – Baltimore village, whale watching boat trip, craft beer tasting, pirates & Irish history.
Day 7 – Baltimore to Kerry – Drive over the cork & Kerry mountains
Day 8 – Killarney National Park
Day 9 – Ring of Kerry
Day 10 – Dingle Peninsula.
Day 11 – Kerry to Dublin via Bunratty castle.
Day 12 – Home
Day 1 – Arrive in Dublin
Let your airport transfer take you to your city centre hotel and relax after your flight. Stretch your legs and get to know your surroundings by exploring Dublin’s city centre.
Day 2 – Dublin city Day
Your second day in Dublin you should enjoy some sightseeing in Ireland’s vibrant capital city. Don’t miss the Guinness Store house for the history of the famous pint of stout, Trinity College for the Book of Kells, Temple bar for the pubs and people watching or Dublinia museum for the history of the Vikings in Dublin. Eat in a Michelin star restaurant and discover gourmet Ireland.
Day 3 – Cork to Kinsale
Get to know the surrounding sights. Meet your driver guide or collect your car hire and take the day touring. Kiss the stone at the famous Blarney Castle and enjoy some shopping in Blarney woollen mills. Depending on your interests you could visit the Jameson Experience Irish Whiskey distillery in Middleton and partake in some whiskey tasting or head to Cobh to the Titanic Experience and discover what life was like on-board the famous vessel. Continue back to the beautiful seaside town of Kinsale for a night in a luxury townhouse accommodation. Eat tonight in a seafood restaurant or choose from the wonderful selection of places to eat. Kinsale is a foodie’s heaven!
Day 4 – Cork City Sightseeing Day
Really get to know Cork city today and perhaps take the open top city tour or simply discover for yourself the churches and museums the city is famous for. The highlights include the Cork City Gaol, Butter museum, the gothic St. Fin Barr’s Cathedral and the beautiful University College Cork. Don’t miss the English Market where you will see the local food produce being sold in Cork’s traditional food market.
Day 5 – Kinsale to Baltimore
Explore the picturesque town this morning or go for a coastal walk before heading back into the car for the first leg of the Wild Atlantic Way coastal drive. Visit Charlesfort a waterside stone military fort built to protect Kinsale in the 1680s and lean about how pivotal the fortress was in Ireland’s history. Head along the coast and enjoy the small villages and coastal views along the way. See the picturesque Castletownsend or Glandore for tea and stop in the market town of Skibbereen and visit the Heritage Centre where you can learn of the Irish Famine which hit the hardest in this region. On to the tiny fishing village of Baltimore and settle into your cosy hotel. Eat in one of the excellent restaurants all serving local freshly caught seafood and local organic produce.
Day 6 – Baltimore
Explore Baltimore today. Depending on your interests, there is a lot to offer. Try a whale watching boat trip and see these magnificent creatures as they migrate past the coast. Take a ferry to one of the remote islands and take a peaceful walk and a pint of Guinness in a local pub. Back in Baltimore visit Baltimore Castle and learn about piracy and clan warfare that populated the coastline. Or simply sit and watch the sailing boats over a shellfish platter.
Day 7 – Baltimore to Kerry
Make an early start today and head along the coast to the small traditional seaside towns of Ballydehob and Schull. Head along the peninsula on towards the most southwestern tip of the country – the Mizen Head. The visitor’s centre explains how this was the spot were the first transatlantic telegraph transmissions were made, and the views are spectacular! Take a walk on barley cove beach on your way back towards Bantry town and visit the ancestral home of the Earl of Bantry. Moving towards Kerry make the journey over the Cork and Kerry Mountains. The views of the coast and landscape are spectacular! Head on to your luxury Kerry accommodation and rest after a long day.
Day 8 – Killarney National Park
Relax today and make a slow start. Go for a swim or spa and unwind. Take a stroll through Killarney town or visit the world famous Killarney national park on a horse and buggy. A visit to Ross Castle and a short boat trip on the lakes are all a must do. Take the guided tour of Muckross house, all very near your hotel and no long drives.
Day 9 – Ring of Kerry
Today drive the world famous Ring of Kerry. Experience the raw beauty of 179kms (111 miles) of the country’s most scenic peninsula routes round the Iveragh Peninsula in southwest Ireland’s County Kerry. The combination of rugged sea, spectacular mountains and small traditional villages will not fail to impress. Skellig Michael, a rocky island with an abandoned 7th-century Christian monastery, is a major destination point. The spectacular views are world famous.
Day 10 – Dingle Peninsula
The second of the Kerry peninsulas, this day drive is beautiful. See the stunning beaches, the film location of the movie Ryan’s Daughter. This remote place is steeped in history and the sightseeing is stunning. The area is a “Gaeltacht” region where the people speak the Irish language as their first language. Famous for the stunning sea views and remote landscape, the winding roads and huge beaches are stunning. Stop in the lovely Dingle town for a fish lunch and some shopping.
Day 11 – Kerry to Dublin
On you way back to Dublin today, make the trip to Bunratty Castle and Folk Park. Experience what life was like in Medieval Ireland in this beautifully restored castle and historical village. Make you way back to your hotel for a good rest before your flight home.
Day 12 – Home.
Make the 30 min drive to Dublin Airport for your journey home.