Ireland Walking Tour10 days Walking Tours
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Expert Tour Director
Sightseeing with local guides
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Recommended by 91% recommend this tour Read Reviews 
Overnight Flight1 night
Day 1: Travel day
Board your overnight flight to Ireland today.
Galway4 nights Hotel info
Day 2: Arrival in Galway via Shannon
Included meals: Dinner
Welcome to Ireland! After arriving in Shannon, transfer to Galway to meet your fellow travelers at tonight’s welcome dinner.
Day 3: The Burren & Cliffs of Moher
Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Journey south of Galway today and get to know the region on a series of guided walks.
• Explore the Burren, a limestone plateau where fields of rock are dotted with wildflowers
• Pass a fascinating array of stalactites, stalagmites and waterfalls
• Enjoy lunch at a traditional Irish pub
• Walk along the mesmerizing coastline of the majestic Cliffs of Moher, which rise to heights of 600 feet above the Atlantic Ocean
Day 4: Connemara National Park & Kylemore
Included meals: Breakfast
Set out to explore more of the surrounding scenery and historic sights today.
• Amble through the stunning lush valleys, majestic mountains and mystical lakes of Connemara National Park
• Enter the palatial Kylemore Abbey, a sprawling estate originally built by Mitchell Henry in 1866 as a gift for his new bride
Day 5: Free day in Galway
Included meals: Breakfast
Spend the day exploring Galway on your own or add excursions.
Optional Excursion - Ashford Castle School of Falconry $99*pp Details
Get an up-close look at birds of prey at the oldest established falconry school in Ireland. An experienced instructor will guide you through handling the hawks before letting you walk around the picturesque grounds and woodlands of Ashford Castle. The hawks will follow your path, swooping around as you tour the grounds before landing on your gloved fist. After the walk, enjoy some free time for lunch in the quaint village of Cong.
Optional Excursion - Irish Farmstead Dinner $89*pp Details
Journey away from the city of Galway to the countryside, and discover a different side of Ireland. Feel the tranquility of farm life as you take a tour of the property. Once you’ve walked up an appetite, sit down for a warm farmstead dinner, including wine. After your meal, don’t leave without a helping of homemade dessert.
County Kerry3 nights Hotel info
Day 6: Killarney National Park
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Transfer to Killarney National Park, Ireland’s first national park which has grown to 25,000 acres of diverse ecological landscapes.
• Visit the stately Tudor-style Muckross House, donated to the Irish state in 1932
• Take a guided walking tour through Killarney National Park’s most magnificent landscapes around Muckross Lake
Day 7: The Dingle Peninsula
Included meals: Breakfast
Make your way along the dramatically rugged terrain of the Dingle Peninsula on a walking tour with your Tour Director leading the way.
• Explore the western tip of Ireland on a guided walk along the Dingle Peninsula
• Enjoy breathtaking views as you wander past secluded harbors and seaside cliffs
• See archaeological sites and ancient ruins dating back to the Mesolithic Period
Day 8: Glengarriff and Garnish Island
Included meals: Breakfast
Take a scenic drive through the Caha Mountains of the Beara Peninsula before setting out for a scenic walk.
• Arrive in Glengarriff, where you’ll board a boat to Garnish Island
• Take a short walk through the cultivated gardens and catch glimpses of wild seascapes and barren mountains beyond
County Limerick1 night Hotel info
Day 9: Limerick via the Gearagh Loop & Cork
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Join a guided walk along the Gearagh Loop, following country lanes around the drowned forest and through the remaining woodland. Then, stop in Cork en route to Limerick.
Join your group for a farewell dinner in Limerick this evening.
Day 10: Departure
Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)
Transfer to the airport for your flight home or extend your stay to visit Dublin.
Add Dublin $259 pp
Ireland's capital is home to some of the leading writers of the English-speaking world, including favorite son James Joyce. The city's long literary tradition extends from the long-gone monasteries that kept Classical traditions alive during the Dark Ages, to the illuminated Book of Kells, the creation of Trinity College, and a bumper crop of writers in the 19th and 20th centuries. But it's not all professorial reserve, as a trip to one of Dublin's lively pubs will remind you.
Dublin2 nights Hotel info
Day 10: Sightseeing tour of Dublin
Included meals: Breakfast
Travel from Limerick to Dublin, then take a comprehensive tour of Ireland’s capital city with a local expert leading the way.
• Pass through Phoenix Park, one of Europe’s largest walled green spaces and site of the presidential residence
• Travel along the banks of the River Liffey and see the legendary Guinness Factory
• Step inside the soaring St. Patrick’s Cathedral
• Stop at Trinity College and view the illuminated Book of Kells
Day 11: Free day in Dublin
Included meals: Breakfast
Spend a full free day in Dublin or add excursions.
Optional Excursion - Powerscourt & Glendalough $79*pp Details
County Wicklow is home to some of the wildest and most spectacular scenery in Ireland, as well as two of the country’s most important historic sites. Your first stop is at the picturesque village of Enniskerry, where you’ll visit Powerscourt, an elegant country mansion with the finest formal gardens in the country. Later, continue on to Glendalough, which became famous throughout Europe as a center of Christian learning before it was sacked by Viking crusaders in the 10th century. You’ll also see St. Kevin’s Cross, the remains of the 6th-century cathedral and the remarkable Round Tower, thought to have been used by the monks as a place of refuge.
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.
Day 12: Departure
Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)
Transfer to the airport for your flight home.
Passport & Visa
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 are not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact the Irish consulate for your specific entry requirements.
There are no major health risks when traveling to Ireland. Travelers should be in reasonable health to take our scheduled walks, although we will make every effort to accommodate those who choose to stay behind. It is advisable to check with your doctor or health-care provider for the latest updates and overseas travel requirements.
One of the most enjoyable aspects of traveling is the delightful variety of local cuisine. Traditional Irish cooking is simple, relying heavily on meat-based dishes. Pubs serve up hearty lunches, and the traditional Irish stew, bacon and boiled cabbage are always popular choices. 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.
Transportation / Walking on tour
Round-trip flights arrive in and depart from Shannon (or Dublin on the tour extension). Included transportation on your tour is by private motor coach. Most of the destinations are easily walkable.
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 and Packing Tips
Light, loose-fitting clothing that provides comfort when exploring the sights is essential for your tour. Hiking boots are recommended. We also suggest that you bring a collapsible walking stick for the more challenging walks. A change of footwear is also essential. A plastic water bottle is handy for staying hydrated on your walking tours, and a pair of binoculars enhances your enjoyment of the scenery. Insect repellent, sunscreen, bandages, lip balm and a flashlight are also a good idea. A sun hat, sunglasses and a sturdy pair of walking shoes are recommended for sightseeing. It’s always a good idea to be prepared for any eventuality—a lightweight sports jacket and emergency rainwear are advised. Also, remember that it is preferable not to visit churches or other religious sites with bare legs and shoulders (entrance may be denied on this basis).
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 and credit cards, as needed. We suggest informing your bank and credit card company of your travel plans, so they don’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges.
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.
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In particular, the extra guides at Burren and Killarney were fabulous. Very well managed experience...
In 2005 I attempted a self-drive tour of Ireland. It was close to a disaster From the very beginning of this walking tour with our director, Isabella, sharing her great love of this country, I came to know Ireland far more intimately than ever before. Architecture, history, poetry, topography, flora and fauna (aka sheep and cows, well maybe some deer too), beaches, hills, castles, churches, music and skilled craftspeople were all part of what we encountered. Ireland is a beautiful country with so much to offer the senses and a walking tour is the way to appreciate all there is to enjoy. Thanks to Edwin, our intrepid, courageous and skilled driver, too.
Ireland was amazing! GoAhead made this trip (which was my first) so easy. I was able to get a wonderful vacation packed with history, culture, local colour and fantastic landscapes without any worries. GoAhead took care of it all! We had one optional excursion that was cancelled but there was a replacement waiting without a hitch! Our tour guide, Isabella, was just a joy! We repeatedly heard from the local people what a great guide we had, but we already knew that! Our driver took great care with our safety and well being and made sure we were all safely and timely to our destinations. He was very professional and so sweet! I can't wait to pick out my next destination! Thanks GoAhead and Ireland!
Stone walls, green grass
Emma was one of our best tour directors ever. She played us a song about stone walls and the grass is green, which perfectly describes Ireland. We hiked national parks and coastlines, enjoying the natural beauty of the Emerald Isle, and ended the trip with the cultural and literary delights of Dublin. And you haven't tasted Guinness until you've had a pint perfectly drawn at a local pub, while watching hurling, and chatting with the warm and friendly Irish.
Exciting Way to see Ireland
Walking the landscape of Ireland is a magnificent way to see the country. I was prepared for more difficult walks so I would say that this tour is one to try if you are wondering what a walking tour is like. We had several people in their 70s in the group and everyone did just fine. I especially liked the coastline walks and the gardens. Our tour director, Alli, did everything to make our experience the best.Local guides were also very good.
I have no regrets with the tour or the involved personnel. The shortcomings that concern me were with the travel to and from destinations. It seems airports, like many highways, have signs that only make sense to people who already know what to do and how and where to go. There was insufficient time in the schedule to get from area to area and through security. This was particularly true at Heathrow, which is an airport designed by fools. I would not have minded a longer lay-over if it meant avoiding actually running from place to pace to get to a gate that is closing. The personnel who schedule flights should not do it while seated at a desk. They must go to the involved airport and see what is the reality.
The Good, Bad and Ugly
THE GOOD..Ireland is spectacularly lovely and we were lucky enough to have not one rainy day! Yes, it was unseasonably hot, but that was nobody's fault and better than rain! The food including GoAhead's included meals was always wonderful..authentically Irish with local fresh veggies, seafood, yogurt, cheeses and bread..Huge breakfasts included everyday..enough to keep us going until early afternoon. Salmon of every kind offered everyday. The Irish Brown bread is to die for and some of us are trying to figure out the recipe. The bus Driver Tom O'Brien was charming, friendly, knowledgeable and really made the trip! A former history and music teacher, he filled us in on Irish history and local culture and sang Irish ballads and recited limericks and told jokes to us as he drove the bus.. His recounting of the Irish Famine as we stood near the mass grave in the Skibbereen famine cemetery was incredibly touching, especially coming from a native Irishman. The hotels were all good..comfortable and centrally located..and as I said, the included breakfasts were excellent. We enjoyed the nightly entertainment at the hotel in Killarney..local Irish bands where we all sat outside singing Irish songs with some John Denver thrown in! The individuals in the group all got along well and became great friends. THE BAD..Unfortunately, almost all of us were disappointed by the lack of walking opportunities offered. Some of us had trained for months to be in shape for a tour that was advertised by GoAhead as challenging. Nothing about the few walks was challenging. The walk at Connemara National Park was abbreviated ( not the 1.5 hour promised on the itinerary) and our tour director discouraged those of us who wanted to do the longer of the 3 routes available which really wasn't long at all. At Killarney national park, were were expecting the 3.5 hour guided walk per the itinerary. Instead, the walk through the woods was no longer than a hour with the guide stopping to take a swim in the lake as the entire group waited for him to cool off and continue our guided walk! Very unfair to those of us who spent so much money to come to Ireland to walk! The short walk on the Burren was fascinating with Tony Kirby as our guide..however it was really more of a lecture where we stood around for the most part and listened as he pointed out the plants etc and explained the history. We would have liked the opportunity to walk around the Burren more, even for just an hour up to the top of the ridge. I asked Tony if we could do this and he said it was not included. The itinerary promised a 1 hour walk on the Dingle peninsula.. that was completely omitted. We just drove around all day and stopped for lunch in a small town. The countryside was lovely, but It was a very long day on the bus. When we went to Blarney castle we had about 2 hour free time which included lunch and viewing the castle..Some us us found out only accidentally that there were wonderful paths and signed walks right in the gardens and grounds! The tour director did not even inform us that there were places where we could walk for an hour or so..she should have been prepared with maps for us. The same thing happened at another castle where I can't remember the name. The bus parked and were were give free time but not much direction on what to do with it and again some of us found out by accident that there were walking trails we could have done, but we needed maps and directions. The tour director should have been prepared with maps for us! The Italian tour director Isabella was not a good choice for a "challenging walking tour" or Ireland. She admitted that the heat bothered her very much and didn't seem the type that enjoyed walking. She didn't dress appropriately for walking in the heat..always in black. She did accompany us on 3 walks, but 2 of those were abbreviated. An Italian and although seemed knowledgeable, she was extremely hard to understand. In communicating, she tried hard..almost too hard. On the bus rides Isabella spent hours talking and reciting and reading facts about Ireland but it was just too much and she went on and on and on..Plus with her strong Italian accent and frequent mispronunciation she was too difficult to understand. I have led 3 EF student tours and the directors always speak to the group as we ride on the bus but never to the extent Isabella did..it was just too much. The bus ride became torturous for some of us and a few people avoided them when possible. The flight layover at Heathrow was unacceptably long. Between 4 -5 hours each way! Imagine our dismay when we realized as we were sitting in the terminal that there were direct flights between Boston and Shannon on Aeir Lingus! 6 hours total flight time for a direct flight! We flew 6 hours from Boston to Heathrow..layover of 4-5 hours at Heathrow and 1.5 hour flight to Shannon! Total of 12 hours! THE UGLY. Unfortunately I cannot recommend the tour that we just experienced. Despite the many wonderful things about Ireland, because of what I outlined above many of us were disappointed. The key elements of a walking tour with an appropriate walking tour director and reasonable flights were lacking. However, if GoAhead makes the changes I suggest, I would highly recommend it. I have a group of 12 scheduled for the Tuscany Walking Tour in April 2014, and several of the individuals including myself were Ireland travelers. We are very concerned and want to be assured that we don't experience similar problems in Tuscany! How can GoAhead make sure this doesn't happen again?
Ireland Walking Tour
We appreciated the personal phone call before our trip from Go Ahead - that was a very nice touch. This was the first trip overseas my husband and I have ever taken and we've never been on any type of tour. We were so pleased with the whole trip. We never had to worry about transportation or where to find what we needed - any questions we had were answered for us. Our bus driver Tom O'Brien was a funny, lovely local man with a wonderful Irish accent and a good singing voice too. Our tour guide Kathy was ever helpful. I don't know how she remembered what each of us needed and kept track of all thirty-some of us but she did. She had a wide knowledge of the history of each area we drove through on our way to the walking portions of our tour. The only things we wished was that at our first dinner together Kathy would have had each of us introduce ourselves & something about us so we could've gotten to know the other group members more easily & quickly. Kathy always let us know the time for breakfast & leaving but it would have been nice to have a printed itinerary given to us either the night before or the morning of each new excursion so we'd know where & how long each part of our day would be. We brought our general itinerary that we'd gotten in the mail but it was not detailed. We were lucky to actually have a couple of days of sunshine and only one very rainy morning. The other rains were soft and didn't last the whole day. The walks were all so beautiful and our individual guides knowledgeable and entertaining besides. The beauty of the mountain, hills and flowers everywhere and the tidy cottages and towns were more than charming. It would have been nice to stop a few times on our bus drives for photo ops. I believe we only did that once. Oh yes, the food was very good as well and I was not expecting that. The only thing we would change was a little less time on the bus and a bit more free-time. We would both highly recommend this trip.
Ireland Strolling Tour
I really enjoyed my first trip outside of North America on the Ireland Walking Tour. I think the itinerary was great, and we got to see more of the lovely Irish countryside--and get out of the bus to explore it--than friends who have gone there on their own or with other tours. I would have liked to walk even more, and to have been a bit better prepared for some of the locations. Our tour guide was English, not Irish; she never had us go around and introduce ourselves or do some kind of icebreaker, so it took quite a while to meet everyone in the rather large (33 people) group. Also, she and did not accompany us on most of the walks--in such a large group, I know she couldn't walk with everyone, but she did know the area and would have helped us learn more on our walks. Optional tours were so expensive that few signed up, and most of them were cancelled--I'd advise finding less expensive alternatives to offer, which happened with an Irish Evening at Kate Kearney's cottage, a late addition to the offered options which turned out to be one of the highlights of the tour for everyone who went.
A Big Disappointment
I was extremely disappointed with this tour. It was mostly bus riding with a few token uninteresting walks thrown in. Compared to the Tuscany walking tour I did a few years ago, this was really a let-down. I picked the wrong tour company to see Ireland on foot.