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Irish Ancestry Tour: Northern Ireland & the Wild Atlantic Way

with County Kerry & Limerick extension
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This tour itinerary varies by year.
  • Duration: 10 or 14 days
  • Group size: 14-28
  • Reviews: 2
Astounding scenery and family discoveries await.

Travel along the western coast of the Emerald Isle, tracing your genealogy as you go. After exploring historic Belfast, set out to see the highlights of the Wild Atlantic Way, from Donegal to Slieve League to the Cliffs of Moher. On this fascinating journey, created with Ancestry, you’ll experience what life was like for your Irish ancestors.

Your tour package includes
  • AncestryDNA kit
  • Pre-trip family history review with AncestryProGenealogists
  • 8 nights in handpicked hotels
  • 8 breakfasts
  • 4 dinners with beer or wine
Included highlights
  • Special AncestryProGenealogists sessions
  • Titanic Belfast museum
  • Monreagh Heritage Centre
  • Slieve League cliffs
  • Drumcliffe churchyard
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Day-by-day itinerary
Overnight Flight1 night
Day 1: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Belfast today.

County Antrim2 nights
Day 2: Arrival in Belfast
Included meal: Dinner

Welcome to the Emerald Isle! Transfer to your hotel and get settled in, then get an introduction to Irish genealogy and the ways you will be tracing your heritage with your Ancestry Genealogist. Enjoy a welcome dinner with your Tour Director and fellow travelers this evening.

Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Belfast
Included meal: Breakfast

Start your day with a guided tour of Northern Ireland’s capital.

• Glimpse the copper-domed City Hall

• View the Grand Opera House and Parliament Buildings

• Pass the shipbuilding docks where the Titanic was constructed and learn about the ship’s ill-fated journey at the Titanic Belfast museum

Enjoy a free afternoon in County Antrim or add an excursion.

Giant's Causeway
Excursion (additional cost)
County Donegal2 nights
Day 4: Donegal via Derry, Monreagh Heritage Centre & Glenveagh National Park
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Make your way to County Donegal today, stopping for several guided visits en route.

• Take a guided tour of Derry, Northern Ireland’s second-largest city, and learn about the historic conflicts between the Protestant and Catholic population

• View Georgian, Victorian, and Edwardian buildings and Derry’s ancient city walls

• Make a stop at the Derry Central Library for a presentation and Q&A session with a local genealogist before crossing into the Republic of Ireland

• Enter the Monreagh Heritage Centre, dedicated to Ulster Scots and Scots-Irish culture and emigration history

• Continue through the beautiful Irish countryside to Donegal

Later, sit down to an included dinner with your group.

Day 5: Slieve League
Included meal: Breakfast

Head west to witness the highest cliffs in Europe, and make a few other stops along the way.

• Pay a visit to the Slieve League Cultural Centre

• Continue on to the Slieve League cliffs for incredible panoramic views from nearly 2,000 feet above sea level

• Enjoy time to explore the town of Ardara on your own

• Spend some free time getting to know Glencolmcille Folk Village on your own before returning to Donegal

• Enter a local weaving shop to see a demonstration and learn about the famous Donegal tweed

• Pay a visit to a nearby college where you'll learn about the Irish language from the school's director

County Mayo2 nights
Day 6: County Mayo via Drumcliffe, Sligo & the National Museum of Country Life
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Journey south along the Wild Atlantic Way and through the landscapes immortalized by the poetry of William Butler Yeats. Pass through County Leitrim and County Sligo en route to County Mayo.

• Make a photo stop at Classiebawn Castle, an estate built during the 19th century on Mullaghmore Head

• Pay your respects at Yeats’ grave in the Drumcliffe churchyard and learn about the cemetery during a talk led by the chaplain

• Enjoy free time for lunch in the town of Sligo

• Explore the National Museum of Country Life, which showcases what rural life was like in Ireland during the 19th and early 20th centuries

• Arrive in the town of Wesport in County Mayo

Later, sit down to an included dinner with your group.

Day 7: Achill Island
Included meal: Breakfast

Travel to Achill Island, site of a 19th-century Protestant mission and an idyllic destination along the Wild Atlantic Way.

• Pass by many blanket bogs en route to the charming village of Dooagh

• Walk through the landscapes surrounding Keem Bay

• Cross the Michael Davitt Bridge on your way back to Westport

Glen Keen Farm & Dinner
Excursion (additional cost)
County Clare2 nights
Day 8: County Clare via Connemara National Park
Included meal: Breakfast

Venture down the coast to County Clare, making several scenic stops in County Galway en route.

• Visit the charming village of Leenane

• Spot Ireland’s only fjord in Killary Harbor, then soak in views of the Maumturk mountain range en route to Connemara National Park

• Enter Kylemore Abbey and take time to explore its Victorian walled garden

• Drive through the picture-perfect landscapes of Connemara, stopping at the Inagh Valley and Maam Cross

• Arrive in Galway, where you’ll follow your Tour Director on a guided walking tour

Day 9: The Cliffs of Moher
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Walk along the mesmerizing coastline of the majestic Cliffs of Moher, which rise 700 feet above the Atlantic Ocean.

Tonight, your Ancestry Genealogist shares a summary of all you’ve learned about Irish heritage. Then, say goodbye to your fellow travelers at a farewell dinner.

Flight Home
Day 10: Departure
Included meal: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home or extend your stay in Ireland.

Extension to County Kerry & Limerick

Continue your journey through Ireland to discover even more of the stunning scenery and local traditions that make the country shine. Find every shade of green along the coast of County Kerry, then delve into history in neighboring County Limerick.

County Kerry3 nights
Day 10: Killarney National Park
Included meal: Breakfast

Travel from County Clare to County Kerry, then spend the afternoon exploring Killarney National Park. Take a walk through the park, stopping for a photo at Ross Castle. Then, enter Muckross House and stroll through its manicured gardens.

Day 11: Free day in County Kerry
Included meal: Breakfast

Enjoy a free day in County Kerry or add an excursion.

The Ring of Kerry
Excursion (additional cost)
Day 12: Free day in County Kerry
Included meal: Breakfast

Spend another day getting to know the region on your own or add an excursion.

Dingle Peninsula
Excursion (additional cost)
County Limerick1 night
Day 13: Transfer to County Limerick
Included meal: Breakfast

Travel from County Kerry to County Limerick for a series of guided visits today.

• Take a tour of the 13th-century King John’s Castle, located on King’s Island in Limerick’s city center

• Head to the Foynes Flying Boat & Maritime Museum, where you’ll learn about the history of aviation and passenger travel in the region

• Get a taste of Irish coffee, a traditional local treat

This evening, enjoy a farewell drink as you celebrate your trip with your fellow group members.

Flight Home
Day 14: Departure
Included meal: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

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Reviews
5
2
4.5 average
Loved It!
by 2nd time traveler 

This tour was the best. Each part of it was packed full of things to see and knowledge of the areas we visited. The Tour Director, Ciaran was simply wonderful. His energy and excitement was contagious, he had us informed, laughing, relaxing and totally enjoying this tour.

by 2nd time traveler 

It was a wonderful experience. Would have liked to stay in 3 hotels vs 4. That was a little hectic.. The hotels each had their own uniqueness about them. The meals were very good. Our Tour Director, Ciaran was absolutely fabulous. Very knowledgeable about the history and culture of Ireland. He...

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Our reviews are authentic and unedited.
Hotels, flights, & FAQ

Here's the nitty-gritty—where you’ll stay, how you’ll get there, and what to know about your destination before you go.

Hotels

We handpick every hotel to strike the balance of comfort, location, and local charm. Specific accommodations will vary based on your departure date, but these are frequently used hotels for this tour and we're confident you'll be satisfied.

Temple Gate Hotel

This cozy hotel is located in Ennis Town. Guests enjoy free Wi-Fi, a restaurant, and bar. Nearby, you’ll find the Clare Museum, Chapel Lane Market, an...

Wyatt Hotel

This charming hotel is located in the heart of Westport. Guests enjoy free Wi-Fi, a restaurant, and a bar. Nearby, you’ll find the Great Western Green...

Flights

Round-trip flights are one more thing we handle to make your journey as smooth as possible. Our team of travel experts will find the best flight itinerary for you at a competitive rate, thanks to our partnerships with top airlines.

Add our airfare package and you'll get:
  • Round-trip flight for your tour
  • Airport transfers at your destination
  • A great price locked in today
  • 24/7 support from our dedicated service team
  • Options for arriving early, staying longer, or requesting an upgrade
  • Flexible rebooking options if your tour itinerary changes
  • Find out more about flights
FAQ
About your Ancestry Tour
  • This tour was created in collaboration with Ancestry, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics. Ancestry harnesses the information found in family trees, historical records, and DNA to help people gain a new level of understanding about their lives.
  • As part of your tour package, you’ll receive an AncestryDNA kit within one month of booking your trip. Please complete the simple test as soon as possible to receive your DNA results.
  • Prior to your tour, we will contact you to schedule your 5-hour pre-trip family history review with AncestryProGenealogists.
  • An Ancestry Genealogist specializing in Irish research will accompany your group and provide unique genealogical and heritage insight throughout the entire trip.
  • Ancestry offers customized ancestral home visits during and after the main trip for an additional cost. With these, one of the AncestryProGenealogists staff will accompany you to the exact town, parish, or townland in Ireland where your own specific ancestors lived. If you’re interested in an ancestral home visit, ask about organizing one during your pre-trip family history review.
Passport & visa requirements
  • In order to enter Ireland and the United Kingdom, U.S. and Canadian citizens need a valid passport with an expiration date extending at least six months beyond the date of reentry.
  • We recommend having at least one blank passport page for entry stamps.
  • There is no visa required for U.S. or Canadian citizens.
  • If you are not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact your destination country’s consulate for your specific entry requirements.
Tour pace
  • You will walk for about 2 hours daily across uneven terrain, including dirt paths and unpaved trails, with some hills and steep stairs.
  • Travelers should be healthy enough to participate in all included walks without assistance. Adding optional excursions may increase the total amount of walking on your tour.
  • You should feel comfortable managing your own baggage at times.
  • If you have any mobility concerns or physical restrictions, please contact our Customer Experience Team.
Transportation & arrival information
  • Round-trip flights booked through Go Ahead Tours arrive in Belfast and depart from Shannon.A representative from Go Ahead Tours will meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel. Please remain in the arrival lounge, as the representative might be escorting one of your fellow travelers to the bus at the time of your arrival.
  • Transfers to and from the airport at your destination are included for travelers who have purchased their flights through Go AheadTours. Travelers who purchase their own flights may request airport transfers withGo Ahead Tours for an additional cost.
  • All other included transportation on this tour is by private motor coach.
Baggage allowance
  • Airlines have varying weight restrictions on baggage. Some airlines may impose additional charges if you check any baggage; be advised that you are responsible for any such costs.
  • Contact your airline for baggage size and weight restrictions for your flight, but please note that our travelers are restricted to one checked bag per person due to storage limitations on motor coaches and other transfers, which may include train connections or flights.
  • One carry-on bag of 45 total inches (length + width + height) is also permitted.
  • Make sure you label your baggage and keep valuables, medication, and documents in your carry-on bag.
Clothing & packing tips
  • We recommend packing lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that can be easily layered to accommodate varying temperatures, and a light jacket or rainwear.
  • A sturdy pair of walking shoes or sneakers is recommended for sightseeing.
  • You may want to pack dressier attire if you plan to visit a high-end restaurant or attend a special performance.
  • It is preferable not to visit churches or other religious sites with bare legs and shoulders (and entrance may be denied on this basis).
Health
  • There are no major health risks associated with traveling to Ireland and the United Kingdom.
  • At least 60 days prior to departure, check with your doctor or healthcare provider for the latest updates and entry requirements, or visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website at cdc.gov.
  • If you have medication that you take daily, be sure you have enough for each day of the tour as well as any possible delays encountered.
  • If you have dietary restrictions and/or food allergies please notify Go Ahead Tours at least 30 days prior to departure by logging in to your account and updating your traveler info. To update this information closer to your departure date, please call our Customer Experience Team.
Cuisine
  • Irish pubs serve up hearty lunches, such as the traditional stew of bacon and boiled cabbage. Soda bread is delicious, very filling, and served with many a meal. Nibble a scone at afternoon tea, with a pat of high-quality butter from County Kerry. Guinness stout is an international sensation, but locals might favor Murphy’s, depending on where you are.
Electricity & air conditioning
  • Ireland and the United Kingdom operate within 230-240 volts and use a Type G plug with three large, flat pins.
  • We recommend packing a universal adapter, as well as a voltage converter if you plan on using your own hairdryer or other device without a built-in converter.
  • The strength of the air conditioning in European hotels is often not as strong or as cool as what you might be used to in the U.S. or Canada. When air conditioning is available, it is usually regulated seasonally and controlled centrally by the hotel.
  • Your hotel may provide hairdryers, irons, and other small appliances. However, these amenities cannot be guaranteed.
Connectivity
  • Wi-Fi is available in most hotels, though some charges may apply.
  • There is no Wi-Fi on any of the motor coaches.
  • Please contact your mobile service provider for information on roaming charges and purchasing an international data plan.
Time zones
  • Ireland and the United Kingdom are on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), which is five hours ahead of Eastern Time (ET).
  • When it’s noon in New York, it’s 5pm on tour.
Currency
  • You will use the euro in Ireland and the Pound sterling in the United Kingdom.
  • Better rates of exchange are usually available overseas, although it’s worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive.
  • We strongly advise that you take debit/bank cards and credit cards, which can be used to withdraw cash at local banks as needed.
  • You can use most debit/credit cards at ATMs on the international networks Cirrus and Plus, but make sure to check with your home bank about withdrawal fees.
  • Inform your bank and credit card company of your travel plans so that they won’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges.
  • International banks and businesses primarily accept debit and credit cards that work with the EMV chip system. If you do not already have at least one debit or credit card with a chip in it, we strongly recommend requesting one from your bank prior to your tour.
Tipping
  • At the conclusion of your tour, it’s customary to offer your Tour Director and driver a gratuity in local currency. Please keep current exchange rates in mind.
  • We recommend tipping the equivalent of $7USD to $10USD per person per day for your Tour Director and the equivalent of $3USD per person per day for your driver.
  • If applicable, we also recommend the equivalent of $2USD per local guide.
  • Tips can only be paid in cash.
Purchasing excursions on tour
  • Most optional excursions will be available for purchase while you are on tour.
  • Your Tour Director will only accept cash (in USD only), Visa, or MasterCard as payment for optional excursions.
  • Please be advised that if you pay for an excursion by credit card while on tour, it may take up to three months for your card to be charged.
  • Some optional excursions may only be purchased in advance. See page four of your tour itinerary for more information. International travel is, by its very nature, unpredictable. We must therefore reserve the right to change this itinerary, without advance notice, to meet with local conditions at the time of travel. We appreciate your understanding. Please refer to our website for Terms & Conditions, dates, and prices.
Choose your dates to start a quote
3 Departures
Tour prices are per person, before flights, and based on two travelers per hotel room.
Jun 8–Jun 17, 2019
Extension available
Call to book
$3,799
Only 7 spots left!
Sep 21–Sep 30, 2019
Extension available
$3,849
Jun 6–Jun 16, 2020
Extension available
$3,799
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