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Irish loughs & landscapes

Discover one of the most beautiful corners of Ireland, a region renowned for its ancient Gaelic culture and for the charm and allure of its scenery. Explore historic Galway City, visit fascinating Kylemore Abbey and Westport House, and discover Connemara's scenic splendours, the Cliffs of Moher and the Burren on this entrancing six-day tour of Galway.

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

A visit to vibrant, colourful Galway City
A drive along part of the Wild Atlantic Way
A scenic tour of glorious Connemara
Admission to beautiful Kylemore Abbey
Visits to the towering Cliffs of Moher and the lunar-like landscape of the Burren
Entry to Westport House and a guided tour
A sheep-dog experience at Glen Keen Farm

WHAT DOES THE PRICE INCLUDE?

Five nights' dinner, bed and Irish breakfast accommodation at the four-star McWilliam Park Hotel, Claremorris
Return flights from your chosen airport to Knock
All the excursions described in the itinerary
Comfortable coach travel and transfers
Fully escorted by a friendly, experienced Tour Manager

Your Itinerary

Day One: Fly to Ireland

Fly to Knock airport, meet your Tour Manager and transfer to your hotel. Depending on your arrival time, the rest of the day is left free so you can relax and perhaps make the most of the hotel's leisure centre. Alternatively, explore nearby Claremorris, about a 10-minute walk away.

Day Two: Included Burren and Cliffs of Moher tour

Discover the unique, rugged beauty of Ireland's unspoilt west on today's excursion. The vast expanse of the Burren, one of the largest limestone karst areas in Europe, is our first stop.

Learn about the region's natural and archaeological treasures at the Kilfenora visitor centre, before we continue to the majestic Cliffs of Moher - towering some 200 metres above sea level. On a clear day, the pathways and viewing platforms along the cliff edge offer simply stunning views, including the famous Aran Islands, the Kerry Mountains and Galway Bay.

Day Three: Included visits to Westport House and Glen Keen Farm

This morning you’ll visit Westport House, considered one of Ireland’s most beautiful historic homes. Immerse yourself in centuries of Irish history as your tour guide takes you through the rooms on show, and hear the story of  Grace O’Malley, the Pirate Queen of Connacht, who ruled the land and seas around the estate in the 16th Century.

Your next stop will be Westport, which sits on the southeast corner of Clew Bay beneath the slopes of Croagh Patrick, Ireland’s ’holy mountain’. Wander around the harbour to the Quay area where the old coastguard station and warehouses now house bars, cafes and restaurants, or stroll along the tree-lined Mall.

In the afternoon we'll head to Glen Keen Farm, one of the largest sheep farms on the Wild Atlantic Way and famous for its sheep dogs. Hear how life and farming has changed over the seven generations that the current owners have lived here, learn about the verbal and whistle commands used to herd sheep, and watch the farm's dogs in action. Tea or coffee and homemade scones are included during your visit.

For 2018, Day Three will include visits to the award-winning National Museum of Irish Country Life, the picturesque little town of Cong, and a cruise across beautiful Lough Corrib instead.

Day Four: Included Galway City tour

Lively, picturesque Galway City beckons today. Join our Tour Manager for a guided tour, then explore at leisure. The old centre surrounds ancient Lynch's Castle, and a pedestrianised thoroughfare leads down to the thriving waterfront. Browse the shops and perhaps enjoy lunch in one of Galway's countless restaurants, take a harbour cruise or visit the city's great, stone cathedral.

Day Five: Included Connemara day trip

Our final day is spent exploring the remote beauty of Connemara. Heading west, our route takes us along part of the Wild Atlantic Way - one of the world's longest defined coastal routes - before turning north to Maam Cross.

From here we continue to Leenane, dramatically situated on Ireland's only fjord, for a visit to nearby Kylemore Abbey. Enjoy the Abbey's beautiful setting, fascinating history, Victorian walled gardens and welcoming tea rooms. Afterwards admire the scenery of the Inagh Valley, the Quiet Man Bridge and Oughterard, before arriving back in Claremorris.

Day Six: Fly back to the UK

Spend a final few hours resting and relaxing at the hotel, or perhaps exploring the local area, before transferring to the airport to board your flight home.

PRICES

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McWilliam Park, Claremorris ★★★★

The modern, four-star McWilliam Park Hotel offers spacious, comfortable accommodation in the County Mayo town of Claremorris.

Further Information

2018 departures

For 2018, Day Three will include visits to the award-winning National Museum of Irish Country Life, the picturesque little town of Cong, and a cruise across beautiful Lough Corrib instead.

Hotel spa facilities

To avoid disappointment, please pre-book any beauty treatments direct with the hotel prior to your holiday.

Hotel transfer times

The transfer time from the airport to your hotel is approximately 40 minutes from Knock Airport.

Combining hotel transfers

We sometimes need to combine transfers to and from your hotel. We always try to keep any wait to a minimum, but you may be asked to wait at the airport for up to an hour, while other incoming flights arrive, before the transfer to your hotel. Similarly, we may need to transfer you back to the airport up to three hours before your flight home departs.

Airport development fees

An Airport Development Fee (of 10 € per person in October 2014) has been introduced at Knock airport. You will be required to pay this at the airport prior to checking in for your flight home. Please visit the airport's website for further information.

Disabled access

The majority of our tours involve a certain amount of walking, including a short walk from the coach stop to the town, attraction or venue you're visiting. If you are bringing a wheelchair, please let us know at the time of booking so that appropriate arrangements can be made.

Special requirements

If you have notified us of any special requirements, please check that they have been noted and acknowledged. This is especially important with any dietary needs you may have.

Tipping

We are often asked about gratuities on our Irish holidays. At the end of a tour it is customary to give a coach driver around £2-3 per person per day and a Tour Manager around £3-5 per person per day; a gratuity of £1 per person per day for dining/waiting staff in your hotel will also be greatly appreciated. In a restaurant leave about 10% of a bill (no need to tip in a bar) and around £2 for services such as hairdressing.

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