V. 3 Explorer X- Gilbert - A Giant Adventure in Ireland

David & Linda Gilbert

Wednesday 18th September – Wednesday 2nd October 2024

Number of Travellers: 2
Duration: 15 Days / 14 Nights

Overview

Picturesque coastal towns and villages, green pastoral fields, soaring cliffs, wild barren landscapes, the crash of the ocean, the laugh of a local. Ireland is romantic, authentic, a home away from home where both old and modern seem to cohabit seamlessly on a small island in the middle of the sea. Packed with history and tradition your days are spent exploring the island of Ireland’s famous and of the beaten track sites of natural, cultural and political interest. A world renowned food scene means your evenings are spent dining in style and with the promise of a pub just around the corner, music and laughter are never far away. Your trip to Ireland will surprise and delight you but the people of Ireland will stay with you, long after your journey has taken you home.

Day by Day

Day 1 - Wednesday 18th September - Arrival in Ireland

Disembarking your early morning flight, your guide will meet you at the airport and together you will travel north to Belfast. This is your arrival day and we want you to have as much rest as you may need however we would love to welcome you to the north with a Traditional Irish breakfast, called an Ulster Fry followed by a tour of the Games of Thrones Studio. Much of the iconic series was filmed in Northern Ireland but on location and at the studios. Today, sets, props and costumes bring the story to life as you explore the Seven kingdoms.

 

Overnight: Belfast | The Merchant Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe Victorian
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 2 - Thursday 19th September - Belfast Food Tour

You may prefer to go light with your breakfast this morning as you join a couple of locals on a private Food Tour of Belfast. Start in the historic St George’s Market, meeting producers, and tasting yummy local products, before heading around Belfast to visit traditional bars, world-class shops and more, eating and drinking some of the best local food and drink along the way.

 

Overnight: Belfast | The Merchant Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe Victorian
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 3 - Friday 20th September - Titanic Belfast

Built in Belfast’s Harland and Wolff shipyards, the ill fasted titanic and Belfasts history are linked forever. Today you will visit Belfast’s Titanic Quarter. Enjoy the ultimate Titanic day out with a White Star Premium Pass which includes the award-winning guided Discovery Tour, entry to the Titanic Experience and SS Nomadic, the last remaining White Star vessel.

If energy levels allow this afternoon, tour Belfast from the comfort of a London black cab with a local guide/ driver and unpack the complicated history of The Troubles. See the city’s murals and peace walls, hear stories of life in Belfast at the height of the troubles, check out historical photographs and enjoy narration from your local guide.

Overnight: Belfast | The Merchant Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe Victorian
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 4 - Saturday 21st September - Sheep Farm and Causeway Coast

Leaving Belfast, your first stop this morning is a local working sheep farm where you get to meet the flock, and see the magnificent dogs at work.
As you journey along the Causeway Coastal Route, you are treated to stunning views of rugged cliffs, pristine beaches, and charming villages. You make several stops along the way, including the awe-inspiring Giant’s Causeway, a geological wonder of hexagonal basalt columns that attracts visitors from around the world. At Bushmills, you visit the oldest licensed distillery in the world, where you learn about the art of whiskey-making and sample some of the finest Irish whiskeys. There are plenty of opportunities to spot filming locations from Game of Thrones as you travel.

Overnight: Derry | Bishops Gate Hotel
Room Type: Luxury King
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 5 - Sunday 22nd September - Bears, Wolves and Alpaca's

Step back in time into an ancient woodland, inhabited by Wolves, Bears, Lynx & Wild Boar. Meet the animals that once called Ireland home and learn of the conservation efforts that are seeing them reintroduced into Irish soil.
With a day dedicated to animals, you have the unique opportunity to talk an Alpaca for a walk in the picturesque Sheephaven Bay area of Donegal. The nature of the Alpaca is gentle and curious, making walking with Alpacas enjoyable and entertaining with their quirky individual characters.

Overnight: Derry | Bishops Gate Hotel
Room Type: Luxury King
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 6 - Monday 23rd September - Derry Walls Tour

Derry City is the only remaining completely walled city in Ireland and one of the finest examples of Walled Cities in Europe. Built in the 17th century, the walls, approximately 1.5km in circumference, form a walkway around the inner city and provide a unique promenade with which to view the layout of the original town. This afternoon, move south to Donegal town where you have the opportunity to spend time in the twon and visit the castle ruins.

Overnight: Donegal | The Mill Park Hotel
Room Type: Junior Suite
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 7 - Tuesday 24th September - Explore South Donegal

Spend some time today exploring south Donegal with your guide. A morning walk at the highest sea cliffs in Europe, three time higher than the Cliffs of Moher is the perfect way to work up an appetite for some traditional fish and chips, al fresco, straight off the boat in a little harbour town.

Later, meet a local weaver who learned his craft at the age of 16 and who’s traditional hand loom methods date back centuries.

Overnight: Donegal | The Mill park Hotel
Room Type: Junior Suite
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 8 - Wednesday 25th September - Foraging the North West Shores

From Donegal, we head south into Sligo, last resting place of W.B Yeats.
Sligo is blessed with some stunning coastline and this morning you will explore Streedagh, with it’s miles long sandy beaches on the north Sligo coast. At low tide it’s the perfect opportunity to explore the rock pools and coves that flank the beach and you will be joined by local foraging expert and author Prannie Rhatigan who knows these shores inside and out. Prannie is a world renowned expert on seaweed and her insight into the natural heritage of the Irish coast is unparalleled.  Keep an eye out from sand-feeding seabirds that flock along this stretch of coastline. This part of Ireland is dominated by the mighty Benbulben Mountain and an afternoon walk in its mighty shadows is a must before moving on to Westport.

Overnight: Westport | The Wyatt Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe Double
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 9 - Thursday 26th September - Exploring Westport

Westport has some fantastic experiences open to you today from a beach ride on some local horses, to revisiting your Hawk Walk Experience at Ashford Castle to biking the car free Greenway all the way to the stunning Achill Island or visiting s local Oyster Farm for a tour and tasting, there is even a local brewing. Tell us what grabs your fancy and we can make it happen!

Overnight: Westport | The Wyatt Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe Double
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 10 - Friday 27th September - Westport to Cork with Viking Castles

Leaving Westport we journey south, through Galway and into the lunar landscape of Clare. On route, while passing through the Burren we will take a tea and cake break at a local perfumery where the makers and blenders have taken inspiration from the local botanicals to produce luxurious creams, perfumes and candles.
A lunch stop and tour at the impressive Bunratty Castle is the perfect break in the day. This iconic 15th century castle is the most complete and authentic castle in Ireland. The original site dates back to 970 and was a Viking trading camp before years of wars and invasions by different fractions gaining power built it up to what is today an impressive structure. With 26 acres of outdoor space, Folk Park and colourful Village Street, fairy trail and viking playground as well as the castle itself, there are activities and entertainments to suit all to be found here.

Overnight: Cork | The Imperial Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe King
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 11 - Saturday 28th September - Chocolate & Cheese

Today we travel from Cork, west to visit old friends and make some new ones. A visit to Lorge Chocolatier to indulge our sweet tooth with a bespoke Chocolate Workshop. Before leaving Kenmare we will be sure to stop at Mannings Food Emporium where you can reconnect with Andrew and his wife Laura.

Heading back to Cork, experience the charm of a working farm, interact with friendly farm animals, and witness traditional farming practices. Indulge in a delightful cheese tasting session, savouring artisan cheese made with locally sourced ingredients, and learn about the craftsmanship behind their production. It’s a delightful way to connect with the agricultural heritage of Ireland and taste the flavours of the land.

Overnight: Cork | The Imperial Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe King
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 12 - Sunday 29th September - Whiskey Tour & English Market

From its origins in 1780 by Scotsman John Jameson through its history, prohibition, revolution and distilling techniques to the world wide brand it is today, the Jameson Distillery tour is both historic and fascinating. Take a behind the scenes tour with one of the expert Ambassadors visiting key buildings including a special visit to the Distillers cottage. Can you taste the difference between Jameson and Bushmills whiskey?

Cork’s iconic English market has been trading since 1788.  One of the oldest and certainly the best covered markets in Europe, it has survived famine, flood, war, fires, and multiple recessions to remain a strong part of Cork’s fabric. Spend some time browsing the stall’s and offerings, sampling delicious treats or picking up a gift for home.

 

Overnight: Cork | The Imperial Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe King
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 13 - Monday 30th September - Cork to Dublin, The Rock of Cashel

Set on a dramatic outcrop of limestone in the Golden Vale, the Rock of Cashel, iconic in its historic significance, possesses the most impressive cluster of mediaeval buildings in Ireland. Among the monuments to be found there is a round tower, a high cross, a Romanesque chapel, a Gothic cathedral, an abbey, the Hall of the Vicars Choral and a fifteenth-century Tower House. A truly stunning site of historical importance.This your guide will leave you as you check into your Dublin hotel for your final two nights in Ireland.

Overnight: Dublin | Number 31
Room Type: Fabulous Double

Day 14 - Tuesday 1st October - Gaelic games, Shopping and Afternoon Tea

Dare to be a Celtic Warrior today! Take a journey of discovery deep into Irish culture, where our sports and language meet. From hurling, one of the oldest field sports in the world, to Gaelic football you will experience an enthralling energy packed introduction to our National Games that will literally take your breath away and leave you with memories to last a lifetime.

While David is practising his skills, Linda will join Eveleen for a morning shopping some of Dublins unique boutique shops and markets. Pick up some momentos or key wardrobe pieces and stroll the busy shopping streets of Grafton and O’ Connell. Once reunited with David, enjoy afternoon tea about a vintage bus touring the street if Dublin in style.

Overnight: Dublin | Number 31
Room Type: Fabulous Double
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 15 - Wednesday 2nd October - Departing Dublin

A private transfer will take you to Dublin airport this morning for your returning flights.
After two weeks in Ireland you will feel like you are leaving home and friends behind. All the more reason to come see us again soon.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Trip Details

Inclusions Read More
  • All accommodation from Day 1 to Day 15
  • Meals as indicated above, breakfast and lunch daily.
  • Services of an experienced and knowledgeable qualified guide from Day 1 to Day 13
  • Ground transportation from Day 1 to Day 13
  • Airport transfer on departure
  • All guided experiences and activities mentioned in the itinerary
    – Public Game of Thrones Studio Tour
    – Private Belfast Food Tour
    – Public tour Titanic Museum, White Star Premium Pass
    – Black Cab Tour Belfast
    – Private Sheep Farm Experience
    – Causeway Coast sites
    – Derry Walls Tour
    – Private tour of Wild Ireland
    – Private Alpaca Walk
    – Private Foraging Experience
    – Choice of experience in Westport
    – Tour Bunratty Castle
    – Chocolate Workshop
    – Cheese Farm tour and tasting
    – Jameson Distillery Tour
    – Visit to English Market Cork
    – Public tour Rock of Cashel
    – Private Gaelic Games Experience
    – Private Shopping Experience
    – Public Vintage Tea Tour
  • Personalised trip design and delivery
  • Snacks throughout the trip
  • 24 hour in-country support from the Wilderness Team
Exclusions Read More
  • Flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Meals not mentioned in the inclusions
  • Activities and entrance fees not mentioned in the inclusions
  • Gratuities for the main driver guide