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This tour is a feast to your senses! Spend three days in the lush green hills of Clare/Galway, its majestic cliffs, a boat excursion to an Aran island and a day tour of the Burren.

Continue to the beautiful “Land of Heart’s Desire”, where you will meet our local historians, storytellers and artists, and discover the hidden mystical, magical and spiritual places of county Sligo/Leitrim.

Finally, you will travel north to the Inishowen Peninsula of Donegal, where you will visit seldom seen places and the Iconic Giants Causeway. You will also have a chance to visit the Titanic museum in Belfast!

Group Size

Maximum of 12 per tour; We welcome family groups and private groups of up to 12-14 people! Please contact us for details.

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Tour Map

 

This tour is a feast for your senses! Experience all the Best Wild West Irish Tours has to offer, with this incredible new 11-day tour. Spend three days in County Clare; three days in County Sligo/Leitrim, three days in the Inishowen Peninsula of County Donegal and the Causeway Coast, visiting both the iconic and magical, hidden places we are known for.

Tour Map Notes

You will be picked up in Dublin and returned to Dublin. Your tour includes 10 days of transportation and touring in a comfortable mini-bus.

Tour Highlights

 

 

We visit Bunratty Castle and Folk Park to get our first taste of Irish tradition and folklore.

 

You will enter the sacred landscape for a fascinating walk in this hidden treasure. In the heart of the Burren, our guide will show you holy wells, ancient forts, church ruins, sacred sites, unique places of myths and legends, and many geological marvels of the Burren.

We bring you on a boat excursion to the Gaelic-speaking Aran Islands. There are ancient sites to behold as you walk along the stone walls of this mystical island.

Enjoy the sight of the Cliffs of Moher to the very foot of these majestic cliffs.

We visit a farm by the coast where our friend Martin, a Sheep-Herder, introduces you to his Border Collies and the dogs introduce you to the sheep! Martin and his family have been herding sheep for generations, and while they are busy with the sheep, you may stop just to take in the stunning mountains, hills and ocean that surrounds you.

W.B. Yeats called Sligo the “Land of Heart’s Desire” and we venture out to Yeats Country where we visit some of the enchanting places of his myth and legend, including Dooney Rock Forest, where we will have a guided walk by a local Naturist. We will see the famous Lake Isle of Inishfree

We take a cruise on the lovely Rose of Innisfree.

 

 

Onward we go to explore a hidden ancient beach full of fossils from millions of years ago. Our travelers have described this serene place as “feeling like we are on another planet.”

We will take you to Streedagh Beach, which was the scene of three Spanish Armada shipwrecks in 1588. The ruins of the church where the Spanish sought refuge from the English Garrison stand nearby and you will get a sense of what happened during this historical watershed event.

Our expert and folklorist will present to you in dramatic fashion, the harrowing story of the Spanish Armada, when 3 of their ships crashed along these very beaches in 1588.

 

Up the mountain valley, we go to a hidden and secret “famine town” – the remains of a place impacted by the Famine years (An Gorta Mor – The Great Hunger). While much of the story is sad, you will be inspired by the stories of courage and resilience of the Irish during these troubled times.

Toward the highest sea cliffs in Europe: Slieve League. You will have the choice of walking up to the top of Slieve League, or going for a picnic at the viewing area below. Either way, you will be in awe of these cliffs.

We will make a stop to see Kathleen, a knitting lady of the old school, who makes Aran Sweaters in her home!

 

We will visit An Grianan an Aileach, a massive ring fort on the summit of Grianan Hill which has been the “Sentinel of Inishowen” for 3000 years, guarding the narrow approaches  to Lough Foyle and Lough Swilly.

 

 

Experience the mystical Mamore Gap where the panoramic views are nothing short of majestic. We know where to find the hidden treasures, including an incredible castle ruin along the coast.

 

We visit a sacred Megalithic Stone Circle and places where we can find remains of 6th Century monastic ruins, High Crosses with inscribed Celtic Art, Holy Wells and places our local friend leader brings us to.

We cross over the ten arch 18th century bridge at Malin Town as make our way to the most northerly point of Ireland, Malin Head (Banba’s Crown). We circle Trawbreaga Bay as we take in the sensational landscape around the Chapel of Lagg and the Five Fingers Strand.

We cross Lough Foyle at Greencastle and make landfall at Magilligan Point, in County Derry. The Antrim Coast and the iconic Giant’s Causeway are of the most spectacular places in the world. We visit Dunluce Castle.

Bushmills Distillery and “Game of Thrones” locations are on our way, too!

 

 

 

We will treat you to an intimate performance of traditional Irish music in an Inishowen home. Top musicians will perform traditional music of the area served with a home cooked meal of the finest Donegal produce.

 

Sample Itinerary

Our Best of the Wild West

Sample Itinerary

 

This is a Sample of our Best of the Wild West Tour.

Be prepared to go “off book” as we take advantage of rare opportunities, special local events, and work with the weather to maximize every opportunity to make sure your experience is once-in-a-lifetime.

You will spend three nights in county Clare, three nights in county Sligo/Leitrim, and three nights in county Donegal and the Inishowen peninsula, returning you on your 10th evening for your last night rest at a Hotel near Dublin Airport before your flight home. 

 

Day 1:   Arrival  &  Bunratty Castle

We pick you up at Dublin Airport and whisk you away to County Clare across the River Shannon and into the “Wild West of Ireland.” We start off in style with a visit to Bunratty Castle & Folk Park to get our first taste of Irish tradition and folklore.

We have lunch at the famous “Dirty Nellie’s” and head off to Ennis town where you are free to visit the pubs and shops of this ancient, cobblestoned town, before continuing to our lovely thatched B&B near the sea, where you will be staying for the first three nights.

 

Day 2:   A Day in the Burren

After a full Irish breakfast to set your day off right, we meet our special local guide to visit Dysart O’Dea Castle and megalithic sites at the edge of the Burren. You will enter the sacred landscape for a fascinating walk in this hidden treasure. In the heart of the Burren, our guide will show you holy wells, ancient forts, church ruins, sacred sites, unique places of myths and legends, and many geological marvels of the Burren.

To end the day in stunning style, you will experience sunset at the iconic Cliffs of Moher. After a day like this, you may wish to rest up in your comfortable B&B, go for a walk in the village, or maybe take in a little Irish music in a local pub.

 

Day 3:   Cliffs of Moher  &  Aran Island

Brush up on your Irish because we bring you on a boat excursion to the Gaelic-speaking Aran Islands. You are free to roam around, take a horse-and-buggy jaunt, and mix with the local shops and pubs. There are ancient sites to behold as you walk along the stone walls of this mystical island.

We journey back toward the Cliffs of Moher and the boat captain brings you to the very foot of these majestic cliffs. We have a stop in the village of Doolin, perhaps have a pint and a little Irish music before heading back to our village by the sea.

 

Day 4:   On our Way to Sligo

We set our sights on the “Land of Heart’s Desire” of County Sligo via the hills of Connemara, County Galway and County Mayo. We visit the beautiful Ashleigh Falls located on the Mayo/Galway border, the village of Leenane and the wondrous Killary Fjord.

We pass through quaint fishing towns such as Oughterard and places associated with the film “The Quiet Man.” In Mayo you see the incredible vistas and landscapes of Doolough Pass. Before leaving Mayo, we look up and see where St. Patrick himself lived for 40 days and nights up on Croagh Patrick.

We check into our beautiful B&B upon the Wild Atlantic Way and have a luscious dinner and maybe some Irish music before retiring for the night.

 

Day 5:  Maugherow Peninsula – A Famine Village – The Spanish Armada

We start off with one of our hidden gems, a beach millions of years old that only locals know about. Our guests have said this place feels like another planet. This incredible place is on a peninsula which is full of treasure, history, and local folklorists and historians who relay the stories.

From the ocean we go to the Dartry mountain range and walk in a beautiful and majestic horseshoe valley. We show you hidden “famine ruins” and other unique historical sites.

We learn about one of the most fascinating and unknown episodes of Irish history. Our local folklorist retells the tale of the doomed 1588 Spanish Armada and the fateful journey of Francisco de Cuellar.

We visit the beach where at least one ship crashed and retrace the steps of the Spanish sailors as they tried to flee the English soldiers. This story is told in riveting style by our expert and dramatist.

 

Not far away, our friend the sheepherder has his border collie ready to give you a demonstration of sheepherding. This is one of our most favored activities.

 

Day 6:   Yeats Country  &  Lake Boat Excursion

Today we visit the mystical “bright lake” of Lough Gill, known for its association to the Lake Isle of Innisfree. Aboard The Rose of Innisfree we will enjoy the sights of the lake.

Next stop is Parkes Castle, or as the locals refer to it “O’Rourkes Tower House”, where we get the local history provided by the best tour guides in Ireland. The castle sits on the bank of Lough Gill where you have magnificent views of the lake and many islands. There is also an ancient “sweathouse” that you can crawl into, if you like.

From here, we head to Dooney Rock Forest for a lovely walk along the banks of Lough Gill and a scenic vista including Ben Bulben.

We end the day with a quiet walk at a holy well which has myths and legends associated with it from pre-Christian times and since St. Patrick visited the island.

 

Day 7:   Slieve League  &  An Grianan an Aileach

We leave Sligo and head north towards Muckross Bay. There, we can make a stop to see Kathleen, who makes Aran Sweaters in her home!

Next, we’re off to the highest sea cliffs in all of Europe – Slieve League (which is three times higher than the Cliffs of Moher). Overlooking Donegal Bay we see the most majestic and moving sights in all of Ireland.

We continue north to visit Glencolmcille Folk Village, and travel through Glengesh Pass on our way to the incredible Grianan an Aileach, a 3000 years old megalithic fort overlooking Lough Swilly and Lough Foyle.

We arrive at our lovely B&B on the Inishowen peninsula.

 

Day 8:   A tour of Inishowen Peninsula  &  Malin Head

Today’s touring takes us to Saint Mura’s Abbey, near Fahan and pass by Buncrana Castle and O’Doherty’s Keep.

​We head north along the west coast of Inishowen to experience the mystical Mamore Gap where the panoramic views are nothing short of majestic. We know where to find the hidden treasures, including an incredible castle ruin along the coast. We continue our journey to the Isle of Doagh where we explore places not even found on Google!

We take you to the Doagh Island Famine Park, for an incredible experience which informs you of one of the most important historic events in Irish history and indeed world history.

Later on we will visit the Carndonagh High Cross, one of the earliest and most important ones on the island. We head north to Malin Head, the northernmost point of Ireland, and also the site of some Star Wars filming!

 

In the evening we will treat you to an intimate performance of traditional Irish music in an Inishowen home. Top musicians will perform traditional music of the area served with a home cooked meal of the finest Donegal produce.

 

Day 9:   The Causeway Coast Journey!

Today we cross the River Foyle at Greencastle and make landfall at Magilligan Point, in County Derry. The Antrim Coast is one of the most spectacular places in the world. On a clear day we can look across to see the Western Isles of Scotland as we visit the towns of Portstewart and Portrush on our way to the iconic Giant’s Causeway.

We can spend as much time as you like here taking in one of Nature’s miracles. Not far down the road we have a visit to Dunluce Castle in store for you.

The Bushmills Distillery is well within our range for those interested in a taste of Irish whiskey. As a major bonus to the fans of “Game of Thrones,” we can easily find ourselves at locations used for that HBO series!

 

Day 10:   Travel to Dublin via Belfast

We are on the road to Dublin as we begin the journey early enough to allow time for you to experience Belfast City.

Here you will visit Titanic Belfast, the world’s largest Titanic visitor experience, within the heart of the Titanic Quarter, and just a short walk from Belfast City Centre.

 

From there we will drive you safely to your hotel near Dublin airport for last night rest before your return home.

 

Day 11:   At Dublin Airport

After this whirlwind of fun and adventure, you will have spent 8 of the most memorable days in your life. We can say this because this is what our guests tell us time and time again. Our Signature Tours are about depth and a personal and transforming experience. You will likely be saying Slán to your new lifelong friends.

 

After a good night sleep, you will be ready to take a Shuttle service to Dublin Airport with enough time for check-in, and go through security and other clearance procedures to go home.

Tour Includes

  • 10 days of touring and sightseeing limited to 12 travelers
  • 10 nights in 3 to 4 star B&B or similar accommodation
  • Touring in a comfortable mini-coach with your experienced tour guides
  • Admission to heritage sites and museums
  • Daily Irish breakfast
  • An intimate music performance & special dinner in Inishowen
  • Priceless memories and experiences

 

Please note: Airfare not included. Lunch and Dinner not included.

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