Monday 29 June Fly from USA
Tuesday 30 June Arrive Dublin (DUB) after overnight flight. (Judy, Maureen, Sara, Carol, Donita, Mickie, Ben & Gail, Dale & Patsy, Ron & Dale, Catherine: CO 22, 6:55; Beverly: DL176, 10:00; Larry: EI 403, 14:35) After picking up luggage and clearing customs, walk out of the terminal, cross the street and take the blue Aircoach into Dublin using the 3-day Freedom Pass that we provided you. Ask the driver to stop near the Mont Clare Hotel on Merrion Square North. The hotel is a one-minute walk across the intersection. Understand that there is no way your rooms will be ready. Drop your bags off at the hotel, refill your water bottle, splash some water on your face and use your Freedom Ticket to take the “Hop on, hop off” Dublin Bus Tour. Make various stops along the way if you like, or just stay on for an intro to Dublin. Come back after lunch and check in, shower and attempt to recover from the flight. Dinner will be at 7:00 across the street at the Davenport Hotel Restaurant. Overnight in the Mont Clare Hotel, Dublin, +35316073900.
Wednesday 1 July 9:15 am departure from hotel for short walk to Trinity University to see the famous Book of Kells. Afterwards, I will lead you to the National Museum of Ireland (Archaeology) and the National Gallery of Ireland (Old Masters). All three of these museums are within 10 minutes of our hotel. Spend the rest of the day using your “hop on, hop off” bus pass. Dinner again at the Davenport Hotel Restaurant. Overnight in the Mont Clare Hotel, Dublin.
Thursday 2 July After checking out of the Mont Clare, our coach and driver will pick us up this morning at 9:15 to take us first to Knowth, a stone age burial site. We will have ample time to visit the museum and see the audio visual show before our tour of the site at 11:00. After lunch at the visitor center (independent) we will then visit Newgrange. After the tours we will continue to Donegal arriving in the late afternoon. Dinner and overnight in the Mill Park Hotel, +353 (0) 749722880, Donegal.
Friday 3 July Today, assuming reasonable weather, our driver will take us on a full day excursion around beautiful Donegal County. If the rain is coming in sideways, we will figure out another activity. Dinner and overnight in the Mill Park Hotel, Donegal
Saturday 4 July We will take a few detours along the way to Sligo and the Glasshouse Hotel, including a stop at W. B. Yeats’ grave. Afternoon free to poke around the charming town of Sligo. Dinner at 7:30 at the hotel, overnight in the Glasshouse Hotel, +35371 9194300, Sligo.
Sunday 5 July Our intrepid driver will come up with another excursion today for half the day. The rest of the time we will continue to investigate Sligo. Dinner at Coach Lane, across the street from the hotel. +353 (0) 71 9162417. Dinner at 7:30, live music in the bar downstairs starts at 9:30. Overnight in the Glasshouse Hotel, Sligo.
Monday 6 July It will probably take us most of the day to get to Galway since we will probably not take the most direct route, instead looping around the coast. Again, I will leave this up to our driver who knows the area and has driven it many, many times. Dinner and overnight in the Hotel Meyrich, +353 (0) 91564041, Galway.
Tuesday 7 July Meet at the fountain in the park across the street at 9:00 a.m. for a walking tour in Galway, including the cathedral. Meet at McDonagho Fish & Chips at 6:00 p.m. 353 (0) 91565001. The restaurant is highly popular and they don’t take reservations. Overnight in the Hotel Meyrich, Galway.
Wednesday 8 July Today we will drive to Kinsale, passing through the Burren and the Cliffs of Moher. And I’m sure that our driver will have some other places in mind too. Dinner and overnight in the Actons Hotel, +353 (0)21 477 99 00, Kinsale.
Thursday 9 July Kinsale is about as close to quaint as we are going to get. We will be met at 9:00 a.m. by Don, our local guide. We will use the coach to go up to the fort for some great views of the town and the area. This will be followed by a stroll through the town. The rest of the day is free to poke around the town. However, there is a Harbor Cruise in the afternoon if you are interested (independent). Dinner in town, overnight in the Actons Hotel, Kinsale
Friday 10 July Depart Kinsale for Waterford, where we will begin at the Visitor Center of the Waterford Crystal Factory. The factory is in receivership so we will not be able to take the factory tour, but the gallery is open (try not to max out your credit card). At some point we will grab some lunch and then arrive at the Waterford Treasures Museum by 2:00. Afterwards we will go to our hotel. Check in, dinner and overnight at the Waterford Marina Hotel, +35351 856600 Waterford.
Saturday 11 July Mid-morning departure for Dublin as we return to the Mont Clare Hotel to position ourselves for the transfer to the airport for our return flight. I won’t schedule anything, assuming that you will want some free time to finish shopping or to see something that you missed when we were first there. Dinner tba, either out or again at the Davenport Hotel Restaurant. Overnight in the Mont Clare Hotel, Dublin.
Sunday 12 July Tour ends with Aircoach transfer (ticket provided) to the airport for return flights.
Carrol Smith & Donita Lincoln
Sara Lewis & Mickie McElroy
Maureen Nowotny & Judy Vallery
Dale Fleishman & Ron Jenkins
Ben & Gail Plummer
Catherine Gilbert & Beverly Baucum
Dale & Patsy Meyers