This 7 day odyssey is an Ireland tour that gives you real insight into the island of Ireland. Experience Irish culture, people, history, scenery and of course Irish music and the ‘craic’. We spend two nights in Northern Ireland, one in Donegal, one on the Wild Atlantic Way and two in the beautiful and lively town of Westport. Along the way we’ll guide you through some of the most stunning locations in Ireland, that others can only dream about.
UNESCO Heritage, Irish Castles and History
Experience one of Ireland’s three UNESCO World Heritage sites. Feed your senses on stunning Irish scenery, visit Neolithic Tombs older than the pyramids and walk in the footsteps of giants at the Giant’s Causeway. Bear witness to the troubled history of Belfast from those who have lived it. Walk the ancient city walls of Derry/Londonderry and stroll alongside glacial lakes at Glenveagh National Park and Castle. We visit the highest accessible sea-cliffs in Europe and enjoy the best of Irish music and ‘craic’ in the welcoming atmosphere of village pubs.
Irish Crafts, optional hike/cycle and Celtic settlements
Watch as handlooms dance to the rhythm of the artisan’s hands as they weave colourful Irish tweed cloth. Experience the unique bond between shepherd and sheepdog as they round up their flock. Meet the locals during two nights in Westport – one of the best places to live in Ireland. Uncover Celtic settlements, take an optional cycle or stroll along safe and scenic greenways. And don’t worry – we’ll make sure the finish point is the pub! Alternatively, take some time out to relax and enjoy this quintessential Irish town.
Westport and the ‘savage beauty’ of Connemara
Using Westport as our final base for two nights is ideal to explore the ‘savage beauty’ of Connemara, where sunshine bursts and scudding clouds change the demeanour of the landscape by the minute. It was to here that Cromwell banished many native Irish in the 17th century. Mind you he did make it optional – as he put it – ‘to hell or to Connaught!’
As with all Anam Croí Ireland Tours, the last day on tour is as filled as all the others. Discover rural Ireland through the centuries (amazing what you can do with straw) and uncover oak roads that lay hidden for thousands of years. On arrival back in Dublin, we think you’ll be amazed at how much you’ve experienced the real Ireland in a week with Anam Croí Tours.
For more info and to see what’s included, see the full itinerary below
Price: 2024 dates from €1795.50 check out our Offers page for other discounts you may be entitled to.
Northern Ireland and Best of the West 2024 Dates
|April||7th (10% off peak Prices)|
|October||13th (10% off peak Prices)|
If none of these dates fit your plans, contact us and we may be able to work around your dates –
7 Day Northern Ireland and Best of the West Itinerary
Day 1 – Dublin to Belfast and beyond
Depart Dublin early, and we bring you to a litle know neolithic tomb with ancient megalithic rock art (included in tour price). We’ll then head for Belfast, where you’ll have the option of a historical tour of the city* or experiencing the building of the Titanic*. Afterwards, it’s a short journey to our overnight at the restful Dunadry Hotel or Oranmore House
*Optional activity– historical tour – £15 (sterling), Titanic Experience £19.50 (sterling) – note currency here is not Euro €
Day 2 – Around North Antrim towards Derry/Londonderry
Aiming for the very north east of the island of Ireland, our first stop at the Dark Hedges – which featured as the Kings Road in Game of Thrones. We take a quick photo stop of Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge and views across to Scotland. We may drop in to the quaint harbour of Ballintoy.
Once lunch has restored us, it’s time to take humongous steps and embrace one of just three UNESCO World Heritage sites on the island of Ireland, at the Giants Causeway (included in tour price).
We may visit thr oldest licensed distillery in the World – Bushmills (included in tour price). Alternatively, we visit Ardara Distillery on Day 4. Our overnight tonight will be the Shipquay Hotel in the heart of Derry/Londonderry (don’t worry we’ll explain all about the name..), ideally placed to set us on the road for Day three.
Day 3 – To the Hills of Donegal
Derry/Londonderry is one of the finest examples in all of Europe of a walled city, dating from the early 17th century. You’ll stroll along these walls as a local guide regales you with history and tales – both modern and medieval (included in tour price).
After a comfort break, we head back across the border into Donegal. Stopping for panoramic 360 views at an ancient Celtic stronghold, and in the afternoon we enter the magnificent and remote Glenveagh National Park. We have three options to make our way to up the castle and gardens – via shuttle bus (included in tour price), cycling* or, the simple old-fashioned way. Whatever the method the journey is simply beautiful along a glacial lake with potential sightings of wild deer and golden eagles.
Accommodation tonight will be the Waterfront, Dungloe.
*optional activity from €15
Day 4 – Along the West Coast
Leisurely pace this morning. Possibility of our distillery tour (if not already done) – and one of our absolute favourite scenic drives to Sliabh Liag Cliffs. Three times higher than their more famous cousins further down the coast, the Cliffs of Moher (which can be experienced on our Sojourn of the South West), they form part of the Appalachian Trail! We’ll then have a tasty pub lunch nearby before continuing our journey down the west coast for a guided tour of medieval Donegal Castle (included in tour price).
Our next stop is to pay homage to one of Ireland’s Nobel Laureates – W.B. Yeats, where we cast a cold eye on his life, on death, in the shadow of the might Ben Bulben.
You can round of the day with a seaweed bath*, a stroll along the beach or an ocean dip (free!) before relaxing for the evening and watching the sun slip behind the Atlantic from our aptly named Waterfront House boutique accommodation in Co. Sligo
*optional activity from €25
Day 5 – Enniscrone to Westport
Yippee – time to break the pack/unpack/pack cycle for bit. Don’t be surprised to see French tricolours flying along our route today, as we also see why the Wild Atlantic Way is so called. After some scenic photo stops we visit the site of a Celtic bronze-age settlement. We travel a bit further west for lunch and a gentle stroll in Ballycroy National Park.
Sit back and relax as we wind our day down towards Westport, getting in early enough to allow you soak in all the town has to offer (which is lots!). We’re staying smack bang in the centre of everything at either the Wyatt or Clew Bay Hotel.
Day 6 – Around Westport
Today is all options for you. You can chill out for part, or all of the day. We’ll be heading out on one of our personal favourite drives through the ‘savage beauty’ of Connemara. During the course of the morning we’ll visit a working sheep farm (included in tour price) before a relaxed early lunch in the village of Louisburgh. As we loop back towards Westport we’ll pay homage at our National Famine Memorial located at the foot of Ireland’s Holy Mountain – Croagh Patrick, where the man himself is said to have spent 40 days and nights.
In the afternoon, you can relax around the town or chose to come cycling or walking along the nearby Great Western Greenway. Feel the Atlantic breezes in your hair as you work up an appetite for the evening’s revelry. And, better still, we’ll even let you finish at a fine pub along the route, grab a quick recovery pint before being dropped back to town.
Day 7 – Westport to Dublin
It may be our final day, but we ain’t going home just yet. On our way back to Dublin today we get an historic insight into rural life in Ireland up to the first half of the 20th century. In the afternoon we’ll go digging and find a 5,000 year old oak road – a case of letting the museum come to us.
We arrive back in Dublin to say sad but fond farewells to new-found friends and newly made memories of Ireland.
What’s Included/What’s not
Included in Tour price:
- Seven fully guided days on tour
- Six nights quality accommodation and six nourishing breakfasts
- Entrance fees to Giant’s Causeway and Donegal Castle
- Distillery Tour
- Visit to a working sheep farm
- Fab scenery, new friendships, insights into Irish history, culture, music, language and sport
- Mighty ‘craic’ comes as standard
- Meals and drinks other than breakfast
- Optional activities as outlined in the itinerary
- Pre/post tour accommodation
€1,995 per person sharing. (you can check current market exchange rates here )
Check out our Offers page for discounts for Early Bird and April and October tours.
*single supplement of €345 per person for solo travellers (please note that this is a charge passed on from our accommodation suppliers and not one generated by Anam Croí Tours).