Ireland travel right now is hot! Everyone wants to go to the Emerald Isle because of it’s incredible beauty, history, castles, people, and of course beverages! Or maybe you just did an Ancestry DNA kit and you found out your heritage is Irish!
There is so much to do and see in Ireland and Northern Ireland that it is one of our most popular destinations right now. And with multiple different ways to see this majestic island, by land or sea, all you have to do is figure out is how you want to get there! Continuing reading for destination ideas, personal experiences, and expert insider tips.
Seeing Ireland has never been easier! Take a cruise and see the island in a whole different way! Or drive through the lush countryside either with a group tour or on your own. No matter which way you decide to do your Ireland travel, you will not be disappointed in visiting this amazing country!
Ireland Travel by Sea
Because Ireland is such a popular destination, and because it is surrounded by water, it makes an ideal destination for cruise lines to visit the multiple ports throughout Ireland and Northern Ireland. There are many different types of itineraries to choose, from the majority of Ireland travel to a few ports in Ireland with many other ports and countries to visit. Here is a couple of our favorite:
- Oceania Cruises – Gaelic Glory
This is an 8-day round trip Dublin cruise visiting 5 other ports in Ireland and 2 ports in the United Kingdom. Departing either on June 19 or 27, this luxury cruise starts at $3299 per person.
- Regent Seven Seas Cruises – North Europe
This is a 12-night cruise on the only true all-inclusive luxury cruise line. This cruise will visit multiple ports in Ireland, Scotland and Iceland. It is a great way to get a little sampler of each country. The sailing date is June 29 and the pricing starts at $10,599 per person, but this is an all-inclusive cruise line so this will include your business class air, shore excursion, beverages, and much more!
- Celebrity Cruises – British Isles
This 12-night cruise sailing from Dublin to Amsterdam will also visit other ports in Ireland, Northern Ireland, UK, France, and Belgium. Celebrity is known for being a foodie cruise, with a great price point! Departing June 14 this cruise is starting at the great price of $1099 per person!
Ireland Travel Tour
If traveling by land is more your thing, we book with several amazing tour companies that will allow you to sit back and relax while they take care of the planning, itinerary, transportation, and more, and all you have to do is have a great time! These tours will allow you to see all the main spots to see in a shorter period of time, still allowing you some free time on your own. Some of the tours we recommend are:
- Brendan Vacations – Best of Ireland Summer Tour
Brendan Vacations is one of the best tour companies when it comes to Ireland travel. They know this area like the back of their hand and they are extremely good at what they do. This 10-day tour will visit 17 highlights throughout Ireland and include 15 meals. The pricing starts at $2535 per person and has multiple dates throughout the Summer.
- Tauck Tours – The Best of Ireland
Tauck is a fantastic tour company for destinations all over the world, and we know they are fantastic in Ireland, too. This 14-day Dublin to Kilkenny tour will visit not just Ireland, but many of your favorite spots in Northern Ireland, including many of the filming spots in Game of Thrones. This tour starts at $6990 per person and has tours running through end of September.
- Insight Vacations – Irish Elegance Tour
Insight Vacations, a luxury tour company, is great for those looking to be pampered while on vacation, and you will be on this 8-day round trip Dublin tour visiting all the most beautiful spots in Ireland. Starting at $2900 per person this tour will be available all Summer.
Ireland Travel on Your Own
There are those that want to be able to see it all on their own timeline and not have to worry about other people in their group. Although traveling on your own does require a bit of bravery trying to navigate foreign roads, it is very rewarding to be able to see something while driving and have the luxury to stop. Fox Travel advisers can plan a step by step tour for you to make sure you still get to see everything you want, just at your own pace. Or companies like Brendan Vacations have a drive yourself option as well.
Ireland Travel – We’ve Been There!
Donna and Jim’s Ireland Travel
We have an Irish pub in our town. Before our trip to Ireland, the Irish-born owner of the “Molly’s Pub” told us to have a good time, enjoy the pubs and brew along the way.
We traveled with Trafalgar Tours on a perfectly guided trip for a week and visited a pub at most stops along the way:
Dublin and especially Abbey Tavern for drinks and great Irish music entertainment most nights (a pub–since the 16th century)
- County Kerry
- Cork (and pub)
- Waterford (and the factory)
- Galway (pub and great music)
- Blarney Castle (great shop next door)
- Limerick (pub)
- and more
After we returned home, on our return visit to Molly’s Pub in our town, the first thing the owner asked….not “did you have a good trip” but “what were ya’ drinkin’?” And the answer Smithwick’s (pronounced locally as “Smith-icks”) brought a smile to his face and he remarked what a fine choice. Turns out, it was one of his favorites which he learned to drink as a child. Much like Guinness.
Smithwick’s brewery was founded in Kilkenny in 1710.
So much for Irish sobriety.
Tahnee’s Ireland Travel
Traveling with my family, we did a self-drive tour option throughout all of Ireland. We started our journey flying into Shannon, Ireland. We made our way over to the gorgeous Dromoland Castle where we stayed for the day and night. I got to go horseback riding through the countryside and do archery. Others in our party went fishing where the chefs prepared what they caught for dinner, or golfed at their award-winning golf course. There is also Falconry or clay shooting among other fun activities. We then made our way over to the Blarney Stone to give it a little kiss, and drove along the Ring of Kerry, before making our way to Dublin.
Dublin is a magical city! The history, the architecture, and the people are incredible. Dublin has been one of my favorite cities to visit. We did a literary pub tour where you visit the local pubs where famous writers would visit, and they would act out scenes from their book. We also did a city tour where and got a Guinness from the Guinness factory.
I love Ireland, would love to be able to go back, and highly recommend it to anyone looking for a stunning adventure!
Insider Tip: If you decide to drive on your own, the drivers there can be a little crazy, although nothing that a Houstonian can’t handle!
Alma’s Ireland Travel
I have actually worked in Dublin for many months when I was with American. During the time that I was there, I did all the usual tourist things: Ring of Kerry, Blarney Stone, Cliffs of Mohr, and Giants Causeway. However, my favorite things were sitting around with people eating pub food and talking with them. Most Irish locals feel a strong connection to people from the US because many of us have ancestors from there. Therefore, they think of us as distant kin. The warmth of the people perfectly matches the beauty of the land. Unless you are going to be there for some time, I would not rent a car. The Roads are sometimes closed in by Box Hedges and the Signage can be problematic in the country areas.
Debbie’s Ireland Travel
In choosing Ireland my two goals were to see Giants Causeway and the Military Tattoo in Scotland.
What I noticed about the tour group is how many people do not know what all you can see and do while on the trip. Our tour guide Shawna was from Scotland and really knew her stuff! She was able to tell us before we got to the places about history and interests. You miss all of that trying to do it on your own.
Our 2nd night of the 14-day trip was going to an Irish home and have dinner. They served you a 3-course meal and entertained you with local dancers in traditional costumes. Half of the bus did not do it because they thought they could eat dinner cheaper. It was a fun experience that I remember still today. When we got back on the bus the next day the people were sorry they missed it.
I climbed the steps to kiss the Blarney stone, I got to see the Ring of Kerry, rode in a jaunting car in Killarney, and took at boat ride out to Ross Castle. The highlight of my trip was getting to walk all over Giants Causeway, what a special place and to be able to say you were there. Northern Ireland has not been open all that long for visitors.
I talk about it all the time with my clients. They tell me they can see the excitement in my face when I talk about Ireland and Scotland.
As you can see, all of the agents at Fox Travel have had many different experiences in their Ireland travels, but one thing is for sure, we have all been there, and we know our stuff! If you are looking to book this HOT destination, contact your favorite Fox Travel advisor at 281-363-0808 or fill out the form below.
She is also Fox Travel's Destination Wedding and Honeymoon specialist.
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