Check out the attraction tour photos with the links on the right
June 17, Day 1, Monday - You’ll depart on Delta Flight #122 at 9:32 pm for your overseas flight and arrive in Shannon at approximately 9:10 am. Dinner will be served onboard and you’re also free to bring more to eat after you clear TSA for your overseas flight. Delta will serve a light breakfast before your arrival to the Emerald Isle! Get some rest on the plane as you’re about to begin your first day in Ireland!
June 18, Day 2, Tuesday - You’ll arrive at Shannon airport in the morning. You’ll go through customs and make your way to pick up your luggage. We’ll be waiting for you right inside the lounge area for arriving passengers.Look for the Dady Brother’s Tour sign where we’ll gather.
We’ll be heading from the airport to the Cliffs of Moher. From the Cliffs one can see the Aran Islands, Galway Bay, as well as The Twelve Pins, the Maum Turk Mountains in Connemara and Loop Head to the South. The Cliffs of Moher take their name from a ruined promontory fort “Mothar” which was demolished during the Napoleonic wars to make room for a signal tower. Don’t miss the exhibits and displays in the visitor’s centre. If you like, they have a very nice café where you get some lunch.
Afterwards, we make our way to Galway and check into our rooms for the night. We’ll meet in the bar area
at 5:45 pm for a “welcome gathering” drink before dinner.
Hotel: Ardilaun Hotel in Galway
June 19, Day 3, Wednesday - After breakfast, Joe & John have a special treat in store for you with a stop in Clarinbridge for an in-shop banjo factory tour/mini concert at Clareen Banjos . . . along with their friend Tom!
Afterwards, we’ll be visiting Connemara Marble.
Connemara marble is over 900 million years old and is
unique to Ireland. The Walsh family own and operate the oldest marble quarry, which was first opened in the 19th Century, and visited in 1903 by King Edward
VII and Queen Alexandra during their Royal tour of Connemara.
Next, we’ll be visiting Kylemore Abbey & Gardens. The abbey is nestled into a steep mountain side, which was conceived as a family home by Mitchel Henry. Unfortunately, this was never to be – Henry’s wife and daughter died soon after construction and the house was never really a home. Then in 1921 the Benedictine nuns came. They rebuilt Kylemore as their abbey and incorporated a boarding school for girls.
The garden was one of the last walled gardens to be built during the
Victorian period in Ireland and is the only walled garden constructed in bogland (peatland). You can enjoy a bite to eat at one of their cafes: Mitchell’s Café, the Tea House (in
the garden) and Henry’s Express coffee shop. We’ll leave the abbey and arrive at the Renvyle House Hotel in time for dinner. Hotel: Renvyle House Hotel in
June 20, Day 4 Free Day, Thursday - The Renvyle House is an historic country house hotel, situated in the wild splendor of Connemara on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. Some of the leisure facilities you will find on the grounds include: golf, tennis, swimming pool, boating and canoeing, fly-fishing, snooker, croquet, clay pigeon shooting (charge per guest), gardens, woodlands & more. Most of the activities offered are free to hotel guests.
In addition, we have a couple of special activities for those that might like to take part. The “lads” are giving an Irish traditional music-group lesson on the penny whistle for anyone who would like to try a tune or two. For those interested in cooking, the chef has agreed to give us a cooking demo. Those who have traveled with us before have experienced the phenomenal food served at Renvyle. Hotel: Renvyle House in Connemara
June 21, Day 5,
Friday - This morning
we’ll be enjoying the unspoiled
splendor of a beautiful catamaran cruise around Killary Harbor, which is Ireland’s only fjord. The 9-mile long inlet boasts some of the
finest scenery in the West of Ireland and features calm waters because of its sheltered nature.
On our way to Westport, we’ll stop at the Visitor’s Centre on Croagh Pádraig Mountain. It’s a short walk and no special footwear is required. If you’re wondering, what is Croagh Pádraig? The mountain is renowned for its Patrician Pilgrimage in honor of St. Patrick’s fast on the mountain for 40 days in 441AD and the custom has been carried on for generations. Hotel: Clew Bay Hotel in Westport
June 22, Day 6, Saturday - Today, we’re visiting the National Museum of Ireland Country Life just outside of Castlebar. The museum is about discovering the story of Irish country life between 1850 and 1950. The exhibits covering four floors, are presented in an engaging and interactive manner, include original artifacts, displays and more.
Back in Westport, you’ll have a free afternoon to explore on your own. For those of you that would like to attend the 6:30 pm Mass, it’s at St. Mary’s Catholic Church (near our hotel). Hotel: Clew Bay Hotel in Westport
June 23, Day 7, Sunday This morning, we’re going to tour the remarkable Neolithic site at Céide Fields in County Mayo, which contains the oldest known stone-walled fields in the world – dating back nearly 6,000 years.
Céide Fields overlooks the mighty Atlantic Ocean which gently laps or vigorously pounds against the cliffs below – depending on the weather. The landscape itself has been forged from the dramatic upheaval and movement of the earth’s crust over millions of years.
Next, we’ll make a stop at Belleck outside of Donegal. Belleck is Ireland’s oldest pottery manufacturer.
Afterwards, we’ll be heading to our hotel for the next three nights.
Hotel: Mill Park Hotel in Donegal
June 24, Day 8 , Monday - We’re heading out through Killybegs, Ireland’s premier commercial fishing port, towards the Slieve League Cliffs. The cliffs rise out of the Atlantic sea almost 2,000 ft. It’s one of the highest sea cliffs in Europe and is twice as high as the Cliffs of Moher. Standing at the viewpoint provides an amazing sea vista and landscape.
Next we’ll visit the Glencolmcille Folk
Village. You’ll experience life as it was in the 1700’s, 1800's and 1900’s. The thatched cottages are exact replicas of those belonging to that era and are
furnished accordingly. Look at how our ancestors lived, cooked and the beds they lay on, the tools they used, their means of lighting and heat. For those of you who can trace your
ancestors to Ireland, this is an ideal opportunity to see rural life at first hand. The Folk
Village Museum is a cluster of six small cottages, called a "clachan," perched on a hillside overlooking a sandy curve of nearby Glenbay beach.
Hotel: Mill Park Hotel in Donegal
June 25, Day 9, Tuesday
- Today, we visit the Glenveagh National Park & Castle in Donegal. The Park is one
of 6 national parks in Ireland. Glenveagh National Park lies in the heart of the Derryveagh Mountains in the north-west of County Donegal. It is a remote and
hauntingly beautiful wilderness of rugged mountains and pristine lakes. The Park, over 16,000 hectares in extent consists of three areas. The largest of these is the former Glenveagh
Estate, including most of the Derryveagh Mountains. To the west are the quartzite hills around Crocknafarragh and to the south, the peatlands of Lough Barra bog,
Meenachullion and Crockastoller. Derryveagh Mountains. The castle is a 19th century mansion built between 1867 and 1873. Next, we’ll visit Donegal Castle built by the O’Donnell chieftains in the 15th century. Hugh O’Donnell burnt it to the ground in the 16th century rather than let it fall into enemy hands.
Hotel: Mill Park Hotel in Donegal
June 26, Day 10, Wednesday
- Leaving Donegal this morning we’ll head to one of Ireland’s foremost poets William Butler
Yeats grave site with part of his epitaph engraved
“Cast a cold eye. On life, on death. Horseman pass by.”
Next, we’re on to Rathbaun Farm for lunch and a tour. Rathbaun is a picturesque farmhouse in Ardrahan, County Galway, where you will be taken on a journey through Irish farming practices. Visitors to the farm will be enchanted by its thatched cottage home, turf fire, stonewalls, and an array of animals.
The barns contain a wide variety of animals and the extensive covered areas ensure you can enjoy the farm in any weather. Fintan Connolly will describe the different attributes of the various breeds of sheep and cattle and will ensure your visit is both interesting and relaxing. Then Frances and her team will welcome you into the cottage for some truly Irish hospitality and lunch. After lunch, we make our way to Ennis and our hotel for our final evening together.
Hotel: Old Ground Hotel in Ennis
June 27, Day 11,
ThursdayWe leave the hotel after breakfast and arrive at the