|DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION||Dublin Airport|
|INCLUDED IN THE PACKAGE
||Airport Pick Up
3 Nights Coosan Eco Lodge Hotel
Airport Pick Up
Golf – Athlone Golf Club 18 holes
Connemara and the Wild Atlantic Way
Cliffs of Moher and The Wild Atlantic Way
Dublin open top bus tour ( Optional)
Irelands Hidden Heartlands & Ancient East
Aodh Golf & leisure Tour (Porterage available throughout the Tour)
Gcroílár na hÉireann
5 Days 4 Nights
Pick Up from Dublin Airport
Upon arrival in Kilbeggan you will tour the Kilbeggan whiskey distillery, founded in 1757 and nominated in Whiskey Magazines icons of visitor attractions 2008. Now owned by Beam Suntory (Jim Beam) Lockes distillery is a small pot still distillery licenced since 1757, a copy of which still adorns the wall inside. Whisky production recommenced in 2007 and its 19th century waterwheel is still in fine working condition.
From Kilbeggan we make the short journey (20 minutes) to your hotel in Athlone, Coosan Eco Hotel, Ireland’s first Eco friendly hotel. The Hotel is a family run business built in 2008 by its proprietor Tom o Neil. Tom’s vision was to build a premise encompassing all sustainable and echo green friendly building practices at the time. His commitment to the protection of the environment and his adoption of a balanced and responsible approach to 21st environmental challenges is a source of much pride. After checking into your rooms, for which porter service will be provided it’s time to relax and familiarise yourselves with your hotel and hosts we will have a meet and greet reception on the balcony overlooking the beautiful gardens and orchard of Coosan Cottage. We recommend taking a stroll in Coosan Point along the beautiful and scenic shores of Lough Ree, where ancient legend has it locals from Coosan stole a cow belonging to Saint Ciaran founder of Clonmacnoise. The cow also features prominently in the local folklore.
That evening after a delicious home cooked meal, it’s time to relax and meet the 21st century Coosan inhabitants; although no longer renowned for the theft of livestock they will regale you with stories old and new, some songs and maybe even some poetry to recharge the batteries for the following day.
Athlone & Viking Ship Cruise on Lough Ree
Day 2 starts with a hearty breakfast and a 10-minute journey to the ancient and historic town of Athlone. Here we will visit and take a guided interactive tour of Athlone Castle. The ancient and historic town of Athlone (Ford of Luain). Straddling both banks of Ireland’s largest river, the Shannon. Athlone is a bastion of Irish culture and history overlooked and guarded by its castle since the year 810. In 1001 the then high king of Ireland Brian Boru led his army into the town, thus establishing Athlone as a strategic crossing over the Shannon, King Turlough O Connor built the earliest recorded castle here in 1129 prior to the Norman conquest circa 1200. The discovery of ancient Christian burial slabs proves the establishment of early Christian settlements leading to the arrival of the Franciscans in 1240. The town continued as a historic and strategic centre culminating in the siege of Athlone during the Jacobite, Williamite pan European war of 1691. Athlone Castle was built by John De Gray at the behest of King John in 1212. After lunch, you can choose from many of the mouth watering restaurants or cafes available on the riverfront we board the Viking Ship for a 90-minute cruise to Hodson Bay and 18 holes of golf at one of Ireland’s most beautiful golf courses Athlone Golf Club.
Viking cruise on Lough Ree.
A 90-minute cruise on one of Ireland’s most sacred and historic Loughs. The lake is the geographical center of Ireland and during your cruise you will hear a detailed narration of Early Christian settlement and Viking raids on the many Islands on the lake. The ship’s Captain will also educate you as to the wildlife and fauna that makes this trip a unique and a must-see for visitors to the Irish Heartlands.
Athlone Golf Club
Located in Hodson Bay on the shores of Lough Ree, Athlone Golf club affords its guests the opportunity of 18 holes of golf on one of Ireland’s most picturesque golf courses. After a round of golf its time to relax, your coach will pick you up and its back to Athlone for your evening meal and the opportunity to visit Irelands oldest Pub, Sean’s Bar for tonight’s evening entertainment. Sean’s is a must see for visitors to Athlone dating back to 900 AD it was established by Luain Mac Luighdeach – Luain son of Lewy close to Ath Mor (the great ford. The bar was documented in The Guinness Book of Records as Ireland’s oldest pub following examination of the bars wattle and wicker walls and old coins found in the 1970s. With live traditional music by local artists every night Sean’s is an experience that will stay long in your memory.
Galway, Connemara and Renvyle House 4-star Hotel & Resort
Connemara links Golf Course
This 27-hole championship links course is set on the shores of the Atlantic overlooked by the Twelve Bens Mountains. Its elevated greens and fairways ensure guests will enjoy 18 holes of golf in a unique and stunning setting.
The Gaeltacht area of Connemara is one of the few Irish speaking areas of Ireland and world renowned for its handcrafts including linen and woodwork. This is the finest example of Irish culture in its purist form and a stroll on one of Connemara’s beautiful beaches is always an invigorating experience. Tonight, we dine and stay in the historic and majestic setting that is Renvyle House 4-star Hotel and Resort.
Renvyle House is a historic country house estate located on 150 acres on the shores of the Atlantic in spectacular Connemara. This four-star resort boasts its own private freshwater lake, woodlands, gardens and outdoor heated swimming pool. The hotel and its restaurant the Rusheenduff have won many awards for its cuisine, customer service and its Cead Mile Failte.
Kylemore Abbey, The Burren and The Cliffs of Moher.
Kylemore Abbey is nestled at the base of Druchruch mountain on the northern slope of Lough Pollocappul in the heart of the Connemara mountains the Abbey is steeped in history, romance, tragedy and great feats of engineering genius. Built as a gift in 1867 by Mitchel Henry for his wife Margaret who died 3 years after its completion. Mitchel never remarried and stayed at Kylemore for 30 more years rearing their nine children until falling upon hard times and eventually having to sell the Abbey. The Abbey was bought by the Benedictine Nuns who had fled from Ypres in Belgium during WW1. The Abbey became an international school of learning for young girls until it was forced to close in 2010. The nuns remain in the Abbey. Leaving Kylemore Abbey we head into neighbouring Co Clare hugging the coastline and on to the barren and moonscape features of the Burren, covering an area of 160sq Km. With no bogs and few green pastures, the Burren is famous for its huge limestone pavements (Clint’s) and vertical fissures (Grikes). Experience the Burren underworld at the Aillwee caves near the beautiful village of Ballyvaughan, where we stop for a traditional Irish lunch and the chance to pick up some souvenirs. Bleak in appearance, man has settled in the Burren since the Stone age with visible evidence of ancient habitats, dolmens and stone forts.
We then head further west to the awe inspiring and panoramic that is the Cliffs of Moher. This remarkable feature of nature is Ireland’s top tourist attraction; indeed 1,580,010 visitors made the Cliffs there first choice of destination in Ireland in 2018, standing 214 meters high and 8 km long, the cliffs offer outstanding panoramic views of the Aran Islands, Galway Bay, the Maum Tuck Mountains to the north, Connemara and Loop Head to the south After viewing this magnificent feature of nature, we head East back across the Shannon to Athlone. For you last night in Coosan Eco Hotel we have a special treat. A sumptuous BBQ followed by a live traditional Irish music and folk session by all local artists. Songs will be sang including the Parting Glass, tunes will be played, and stories will be regaled, whether their true may be open to interpretation
Porter service will be available as will the tour director to inform or aid guests as to any questions that may arise.