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1 / 109

A Week in Ireland: Galway, Cork & Dublin

8 days
From the Irish people’s sparkling wit and inviting pub culture, to the isle’s incredible emerald landscapes, this small country packs quite a punch. Get to know this beautiful island on a tour of its leading cities and natural wonders, from the rocky Burren to the Cliffs of Moher.

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Maximum tour group size: 35 travelers

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Your tour includes

  • 6 nights in handpicked hotels

  • Breakfast daily, 2 three-course dinners with beer or wine

  • Private deluxe motor coach

  • Multilingual Tour Director

  • Guided sightseeing and select entrance fees

Overnight Flight 1 night

Day 1: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Shannon today.

Galway 2 nights Hotel info

Day 2: Arrival in Galway

Included meals: Dinner

Welcome to Ireland! Transfer to Galway to settle in to your hotel, then meet your fellow travelers at tonight’s welcome dinner.

Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Galway

Included meals: Breakfast

On a guided tour, get a feel for the local energy and living traditions of Galway, Ireland’s third-largest city.

• Stroll past Lynch’s Castle, Galway Cathedral, the Druid Theater Company and the broad expanse of Eyre Square

• View the city’s medieval walls and Spanish Arch

• Peruse authentic Claddagh rings in a local shop

• Watch fishermen at work in the traditional fishing village of Claddagh

Enjoy a free day in Galway, or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Castle Banquet Dinner $115*pp Details

Enjoy a feast fit for a king inside Dunguaire Castle, a 17th-century castle overlooking Galway Bay. Sip from a goblet of mead and learn the history of the castle before proceeding up the spiral staircase to the banquet hall, where you’ll enjoy a sumptuous, four-course dinner and an evening of live entertainment, including songs and stories. Please note: This excursion is seasonal from mid-April to mid-October.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $125)

County Cork 1 night Hotel info

Day 4: Cork via the Burren & Cliffs of Moher

Included meals: Breakfast

Make your way to Cork, a city synonymous with the Irish spirit of rebellion, stopping en route to explore two of the country’s most dramatic landscapes.

• Travel through the limestone plateau called the Burren

• Explore the Cliffs of Moher, which rise 700 feet above the Atlantic Ocean

• Embark on a guided walking tour of Cork, also known as the “Rebel City”

• Stop at the English Market, a traditional food hall best known for its butchers and fresh fish

Dublin 3 nights Hotel info

Day 5: Dublin via Blarney Castle

Included meals: Breakfast

Pay a visit to Blarney Castle en route to Dublin, the home of the legendary Blarney Stone, said to grant the “gift of gab” to those who kiss it.

Day 6: Sightseeing tour of Dublin

Included meals: Breakfast

Experience the history and vibrancy of the Emerald Isle’s capital city with your guide leading the way. 

• Pass through Phoenix Park, one of Europe’s largest walled green spaces and site of the presidential residence

• Travel along the River Liffey and get a look at the legendary Guinness Storehouse

• Step inside the soaring St. Patrick’s Cathedral

• Visit Trinity College to see the illuminated Book of Kells

Enjoy a free afternoon or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Traditional Irish Evening $99*pp Details

Enjoy this special evening of Irish food, music and live entertainment. Dinner will be served first, giving you a taste of traditional Irish dishes. You’ll then be treated to a live show of Irish music and dance. Join in the fun as you enjoy a merry and memorable night. Please note: The specific venue and day of the week for this optional may change due to availability.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $109)

Day 7: Free day in Dublin

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Spend the day exploring on your own or add an excursion. 

Later, join your group for a farewell dinner.

Optional Excursion - Glendalough $29*pp Details

County Wicklow has some of the wildest and most spectacular mountain scenery in Ireland, as well as many of the country’s most important historic sites. Journey through Wicklow’s captivating landscapes to Glendalough, which became famous throughout Europe as a center of Christian learning before it was sacked by Viking raiders in the 10th century. Here, you’ll see St. Kevin’s Cross, marking the place where the saint lies buried, the remains of the sixth-century cathedral and the remarkable Round Tower, thought to have been used by monks as a place of refuge. Your Tour Director will lead you on a tour of the site followed by free time.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $39)

Day 8: Departure

Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

How's the weather?

  • Galway, Ireland
  • Cork, Ireland
  • Dublin, Ireland
Temperature Precipitation
  • JAN
  • FEB
  • MAR
  • APR
  • MAY
  • JUN
  • JUL
  • AUG
  • SEP
  • OCT
  • NOV
  • DEC

Passport & Visa Requirements

In order to enter Ireland, U.S. and Canadian citizens need a valid passport. The expiration date must extend at least six months beyond the date of your return home. No visa is required for U.S. or Canadian citizens. If you’re not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact each country’s consulate for your specific entry requirements.

Baggage Allowance

Airlines have varying weight restrictions on luggage. Some airlines may impose additional charges if you choose to check any baggage; be advised that you are responsible for any such costs. Contact your airline for detailed information regarding luggage size and weight restrictions for your flight, but please note that Go Ahead travelers are restricted to one checked bag per person due to storage limitations on motor coaches and other internal transfers, which may include train connections or flights. One carry-on bag is also permitted, provided that it does not exceed 45 total inches (length + width + height). Make sure you label your baggage and carry valuables, medication and documents in your carry-on bag.

Clothing & Packing Tips

Light, loose-fitting clothing that provides comfort when exploring the sights is essential for your tour. A sun hat, sunglasses and a sturdy pair of walking shoes or sneakers are recommended for sightseeing. It’s always a good idea to be prepared for any event—a lightweight jacket and emergency rainwear are advised. If you plan to visit an especially elegant restaurant or attend the opera or theater, you will probably feel more comfortable with something more formal to wear. Also, please be respectful and refrain from baring legs or shoulders when visiting churches or other religious sites (entrance may be denied on this basis).

Health

There are no major health risks when traveling to Ireland. It is always advisable to check with your doctor or healthcare provider for the latest updates and overseas travel requirements.

Cuisine

One of the most enjoyable aspects of traveling is the delightful variety of local cuisine. Traditional Irish cooking is simple, relying heavily on meatbased dishes. Pubs serve up hearty lunches, like traditional Irish stew. Soda bread is delicious and very filling, as are Irish cakes, such as scones and Barm Brack. The thick black beer known as Guinness is a national institution in its own right. In recent years, Dublin has seen something of a culinary revolution, and the city now boasts an impressive array of new restaurants offering exciting cuisine with continental European and Asian influences.

Transportation

Round-trip flights arrive in Shannon and depart from Dublin. Included transportation on this tour is by private motor coach. Most of the destinations are easily walkable, but you may want to spend your free time exploring Dublin by a combination of walking and public transportation. The city is serviced by numerous buses, and if you wish to take excursions on your own outside of Dublin, use the very efficient Dublin Area Rapid Transport (DART) trains, which reach most locations on the coast.

Electricity

Ireland operates on the European standard 220 volts.

Time Zones

Ireland falls on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), which is five hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time (EST).

Currency

The euro is the currency you will be using on your tour. Better rates of exchange are usually available in your destination countries, although it is worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive. We advise that you take a combination of bank/ATM cards, credit cards and traveler’s checks, which can be exchanged for cash at local banks, as needed. We suggest that you inform your bank and credit card company of your travel plans, so that they won’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges. Please note: With the conversion to the euro, it has been increasingly difficult to exchange traveler’s checks outside of Europe’s major cities—both at banks and shops—and they often attract higher fees.

Tipping

At the conclusion of your tour, it is customary to offer your Tour Director and driver a gratuity. We recommend tipping in your tour country’s currency, the equivalent of $3USD/CAD per person per day for your driver and $6USD/CAD to $9USD/CAD per person per day for your Tour Director. If applicable, we also recommend the equivalent of $2USD/CAD per local guide. Tips can only be paid in cash. Please keep current local currency exchange rates in mind when tipping.

See what our travelers say about this tour—all reviews are authentic and unedited.

Have you been on tour with us? Visit My Account to submit a review.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/20/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: TX

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Best tour director

Mathew our tour director was the best. He took the time to create special moments to celebrate our anniversary. He shared the local food and customs from his perspective and even his own family with us. He made our trip worth while. I plan on returning to Ireland. wonderful trip!!!

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/20/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: FL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Best Tour Director!

This was an amazing tour! Out tour director, Matthew, was very knowledgable and kind. We did so much more than what was mentioned on the itinerary. I feel like we got to experience so much more of Ireland than what was said in our initial itinerary. All the little extras Matthew did for us while we were on the bus along the country side really made a difference. The strawberries, the chocolates, the chips were all awesome. With Matthew as our tour director and Arthur as our bus driver, it made for quite hilarious travel times. Making sure everyone on tour knew how to get back to the hotel and the suggestions that were given for where to eat and what to see, showed that our tour director cared about us. I would definitely recommend this to trip to anyone looking for a fun time in Ireland without having to spend too much time away from home.

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5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/6/2015

Number of Past Tours: 2

From: WA

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Awesome trip and Tour Director

The trip was wonderful, everyone was so nice, hearing all the histories and sites seen was amazing, the country is beautiful. the Tour Director was AWESOME, hope to have him again someday on an other tour.

4 / 5

4 / 5

Traveled On: 5/30/2015

Number of Past Tours: 2

From: NE

Tour Director: 4 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Great Tour - Accommodations and food not the best

We started out great. The hotel and food in Galway city was amazing. Good service and friendly. Hotels and food included went downhill from there. Since I am there for the scenery - I didn't let it distract me. The tour itself was great and Sean is very knowledgeable. He taught us a great deal about Ireland and the people. We love the Go Ahead Tour company and have recommended it to many.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 5/30/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: MA

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Wonderful

Tour Director Sean was amazing, and I feel like we did so much in just a week. I would have liked a little more time in Cork but I can't think of where we could have taken it away from. I loved all the excursions and still had plenty of down time to explore on my own.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 5/30/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: NY

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Great Time

Just came home last week. Had a great time. Our tour director Sean was fantastic, he added on side trips to our itinerary that were great. I also can't forget to mention our bus driver Tom was excellent.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 10/12/2013

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: TN

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

25th Annviersery Tour

Best vacation ever...

4 / 5

4 / 5

Traveled On: 5/9/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: NJ

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Awesome Tour Director

I learned a lot from my Tour Director, Matthew, while in Ireland. I traveled alone but never felt alone - he was a major help in that area. But more importantly, I learned a lot of Irish history and would love to go back there again. Thank you Matthew......Maureen

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 5/9/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: NY

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

First Tour & not the last!

I was skeptical at first, we had never taken a tour, we had always planned our over seas visits on our own and at our control. I loved setting the CFO hat aside to experience traveling with out all the fuss and planning. I used to tell everyone, we love to travel abroard, but we don't go to relax, we go to see and experience. We would come home exhausted but happy! This was my first trip abroad where I actually felt I was on vacation and I didn't have to see to the details daily. Many thanks to Mathew our tour director, who made our first experience a fun and full experience in a short period of time! I personally loved all the extras Mathew included on our tour that really bonded our tour group. Mathew asked us at our farewell dinner what was our most memoriable moment, well honestly the whole tour experience along with the beautiful and friendly country of Ireland.

4 / 5

4 / 5

Traveled On: 5/9/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: IL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

A week of pure bliss!

Words cannot describe how much "brilliant" fun I had in Ireland. Our native Irish tour guide Matthew was absolutely fantastic. Not only was he knowledgeable he was also witty too. Matthew did an excellent job keeping everyone on their toes from the minute all of us "jet lagged" tourist arrived at the Shannon airport. He even took our group to multiple hidden gems of the Emerald Isle. We did pretty much everything on the itinerary plus so much more. The only downfall of the whole trip was the accommodations, which I expected to be a lot nicer with the price I paid for this tour. Overall, I would definitely look into another Go Ahead Tour to continue to wanderlust the world.

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