Road Trip: Ireland

take The Road less traveled 

June  2019

May the road rise to meet you, 
may the wind be ever at your back. 
May the sun shine warm upon your face, 
and the rains fall soft upon your fields...”
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Total package price:
$2217

Includes car rental, hotel accommodations, tours and more. 

*Price is total per person and both price and  availability are subject to change and are not guaranteed until completed through the booking process. 

 From breathtaking landscapes and enchanting castles, to other-worldly formations...
take the roads less traveled and explore the sights and secrets of Ireland. 

 
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Day 1: 
DEPARTURE and arrival in ireland

Today you embark on your journey to Ireland! Pack your jacket and a camera as you set off for the Emerald Isle! 

 

You'll stay in the Ballyseede Castle for 3 nights as you explore the area.


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Day 2: 
Ring of Kerry
Skellig Ring
Skellig Michael

After breakfast, drive south on the Ring of Kerry to Portmagee.

As you cruise along the Atlantic Coast on this spectacular mountain road through the towns of Kells, Derrynane, and Glenbeigh, you’ll find a number of impressive sights, with various stopping points and photo opportunities. From Ross Castle and Muckross House to Torc Waterfall, Bog Village, and the glacial valley of the Gap of Dunloe, you’ll want to keep your eyes peeled and your camera out.
The ring also passes the golden beaches of Inch Beach, the Lakes of Killarney, the Macgillycuddy’s Reeks mountains, Ladies View, and Dingle Bay looking out to the Dingle Peninsula.
The coastal side of the loop offers a taste of the Wild Atlantic Way, and in County Kerry’s Waterville, visitors tend to stop for photos with the waterfront Charlie Chaplin statue.

Insider Tip
As with many ring roads, there is little room to pass at some points. It’s good to note that all tour buses travel counterclockwise from Killarney and that self-driving travelers can head clockwise for less traffic.

At the bottom of the Ring of Kerry, you'll take a detour onto the lesser known, Skellig Ring. 

Skellig Ring is a predominantly coastal road that offers panoramic views of its namesake, the Skellig rocks. While it might be the Ring of Kerry’s lesser sister, it certainly is far more impressive.

From the highest point of the road you can climb the hill on the seaward side of the saddle in twenty minutes or so for the most magnificent views out to the Skellig Islands, across to the Dingle Peninsula and the Blaskets, and inland to the Iveragh Mountains. 

Take Skellig Ring to Portmagee where you will board a ferry to Skellig Michael

Sail on a grand adventure to the majestic Skellig Islands, which lie 7 miles off the west coast or Ireland.

The earliest reference in history to the Skellig Islands dates back to 600AD. During the time of the Penal Laws, Skellig Michael and Little Skellig became a haven for many Catholics whose beliefs and rights were being suppressed. The largest of the Skelligs is Skellig Michael (Sceilg Mhichil) and was home to one of the earliest monastic settlements in Ireland.

The monks of St. Fionan's monastery led simple lives and lived in stone, beehive shaped huts. They would descend the 670 steps early every morning and fish for the morning's breakfast and would spend the rest of the day praying in the church, tending to their gardens and studying. The huts, which are round on the outside and rectangular on the inside, were carefully built so that no drop of rain ever entered between the stones.

Skellig Michael also features birdlife in abundance - puffins, guillemots, kittiwakes to name a few all call these islands home throughout the year. You may also just encounter whales, dolphins, sunfish and even basking sharks roaming the surrounding waters.


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Day 3: 
The Dingle Peninsula:
Dingle
slea Head Route
Connor Pass

Hidden away on Ireland’s southwestern coast, Dingle is at the heart of the Dingle Peninsula, and a popular starting point for both the Dingle Way long-distance hiking trail and the Slea Head driving route, which loops around the scenic headland, passing by Europe’s westernmost point at Slea Head.

The drive passes through the village of Ventry which is on the coast and has a good beach for swimming and water sports. Then the drive winds through cliffs and offers views of the Atlantic Ocean as it nears Slea Head. Scenes from Ryan's Daughter and Far and Away were filmed near here. The Slea Head Drive continues through wild landscapes and several villages. One of the highlights is the Gallarus Oratory, the best preserved early Christian church in Ireland. The drive also passes through fishing villages and mountainous regions, including Mount Brandon, the second highest mountain in Ireland. 


The Connor Pass is an absolute highlight that cannot be missed. It starts just outside the town of Dingle and ends on the other side of the peninsula near the village Castlegregory. It is Ireland's highest mountain pass. It is a narrow, twisting road surrounded by sharp drops and lakes. As such, buses are prohibited from driving this road.

Just off the very westernmost point on the peninsula you will find the Blasket Islands. Until the 1950s these islands were inhabited and from Dunquin, on the mainland, you can still see the remains of the main village on the Great Blasket island. Many of the old inhabitants became famous writers and poets and the Blasket Centre has a fascinating exhibition on the literary heritage of the islands.

A large part of the peninsula is designated as a so called "Gaeltacht". This means the Irish language is the primary language spoken here. Road signs, for example, are all in Irish language. 


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Day 4: 
The Burren
Cliffs of Moher

Check out of your castle this morning and take off on the road to see Co. Clare. 

Start your day by exploring The Burren, one of Ireland’s most unique and photogenic landscapes.  
Stretching over 160 square km, the Burren, derived from the Gaelic word Boireann meaning ‘rocky place’, is one of the most visited attractions in the Shannon region.
Aptly named, the karst topography is characterized by its unusual limestone formations, naturally sculpted through acidic erosion over thousands of years. The natural landscape is an otherworldly terrain - a giant jigsaw of rocks, made up of grikes (fissures) and clints (isolated rocks jutting from the surface), with pockets of lush greenery poking between the expanses of bare rock.

Then head towards the Cliffs of Moher. 

Towering 702 feet above the Atlantic Ocean at their highest point and stretching for five miles along the water, the world-famous Cliffs of Moher define the rugged west coast of Ireland. They are one of the most popular tourist attractions in Ireland.

Once at the cliffs, you can wander a number of winding coastal trails and pathways, capture photos of the dramatic scenery, and walk out to peer over cliff edges at the waves below. The onsite underground Visitor Centre features educational exhibits and a number of arts and crafts gift shops, while the viewing platform atop the historical O’Brien’s Tower provides stellar views stretching west to the Aran Islands, north to Galway, and out along the Atlantic Coast.

After exploring the Cliffs of Mohr to your liking, drive to Dromoland Castle, where you'll stay for the next 2 nights.  


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Day 3:
Aran Islands (Inis Mor)
DOolin

The Aran Islands are one of Ireland’s most unique destinations, but most visitors only admire them from afar. Today, you'll take a round-trip ferry from Doolin to Inis Mór to give you the whole day to explore independently and visit sights such as Dun Aengus, the Black Fort, the Seven Churches, and Clochan na Carraige.
 

Make your own way to Doolin Pier in time for a 10am departure. Set sail on the around 1-hour and 15-minute journey to Inis Mór, the largest of the Aran Islands, and enjoy spectacular views of Galway Bay and the Cliffs of Moher as you cruise out across the Atlantic. On arrival in Kilronan Harbour, you’ll have the entire day to explore the island at your own pace. Perhaps rent a bike, or ride a horse around the island, and take in sights such as Dún Aonghasa (Dun Aengus), the Aran Heritage Centre, Dún Duchathair (The Black Fort), Na Seacht dTeampaill (The Seven Churches), Teaghlach Einne (House of St. Enda), and Clochan na Carraige.
You could also shop for the islands’ famous Aran Sweaters at the Aran Sweater Market in Kilronan, spot wildlife such as seals and sea birds along the coastal cliffs, and tuck into a typical Irish lunch at one of the harbor’s many pubs, restaurants and cafés.
Make your way back to Kilronan Harbour in time for the return ferry at 4pm sharp. Your tour ends back at Doolin Pier around 5.30pm. 

You'll want to stay in Doolin for dinner, stop by Fitzpatrick's Pub , the local seafood is particularly good here!

Then visit one (or more) of the village’s three historic pubs, Gus O’Connor’s, Mcdermott’s and Mcgann’s. 
All host nightly music sessions, where you can hear Gaelic poetry set to music and admire the soulful timbre of traditional instruments like Celtic harps, tin whistles, fiddles and Irish flutes. Musicians from all over the globe visit Doolin in search of the genre’s roots, and a number of events throughout the year bring together local and international musicians for impromptu jam sessions.

 With allegedly more musicians per square mile in this county than anywhere in the world, it’s unsurprising that this small fishing village is hailed as the capital of Irish folk music. Musical traditions still reign strong today, and those looking for an authentic taste of traditional Irish music won’t have to look far in Doolin. 


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Day 3:
Galway
Dunguaire Castle
Medieval banquet

This morning, you'll check out of your castle and drive north to Galway, where you will stay in your central hotel for the next 2 nights.

Known as the ˜City of the Tribes", the vibrant city of Galway has plenty to keep visitors entertained, with awe-inspiring architecture, a riotous nightlife and some of Ireland's principal attractions right on its doorstep.

In fact, one of those tribes that Galway is known for is the Joyce Family, who gave us the Claddagh ring
Explore the Claddagh area on a tour (food, history, whiskey), or on your own! 

Be sure to visit the Galway Cathedral, though! 
The cathedral’s copper domed roof, visible for miles around, has become one of Galway’s most beloved landmarks, but it’s the resplendent interiors that visitors find most impressive. An eclectic blend of artistic and ceremonial decorations, the lavish cathedral hall draws inspiration from a myriad of architectural styles including gothic-style rose windows by George Campbell, Romanesque stone carvings and a Renaissance-style Crucifixion mosaic by Patrick Pollen. Above all though, it’s an incredible achievement of artistry, from the intricate woodcarvings to the vast wall paintings, seamlessly blending generations of Irish art and design styles.

Tonight, visit Dunguaire Castle

Sitting on an outcrop jutting into Galway Bay, the 16th-century Dunguaire Castle appears like a fairy-tale vision to drivers traversing the coastal road, prompting many to pull over and reach for a camera. The site housed prominent local clans for centuries before famous Irish surgeon, poet, and playwright Oliver St. John Gogarty bought it in 1924. He then turned it into a hangout for Ireland's literary elite, including Lady Gregory, W.B. Yeats, Sean O'Casey, and George Bernard Shaw. Today, most travelers admire the castle from afar, though some do venture inside.

You can explore the castle's modest interior and climb to the top of the 75-foot (22-meter) tower for daytime views over Galway Bay, and in the evening, you'll enjoy a medieval banquet, which includes a 4-course candlelit dinner complete with Celtic music, mead, and storytelling. 


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Day 3:
Ashford Castle (w/lunch reservations)
Kylemore Abbey

Start your day by heading north to Ashford Castle

Massive, flamboyantly turreted, Ashford is the very picture of a romantic Irish castle. This famed mock-Gothic baronial showpiece, dating from the 13th century, and rebuilt in 1870 for the Guinness family, has been wowing visitors like President Reagan, John Travolta, Brad Pitt, and Pierce Brosnan—who got married here—ever since.
Nearly bigger than the entire neighboring village of Cong, it is strong on luxury and service, yet maintains a relaxed atmosphere in which guests of all ages feel totally at ease. Kids immediately associate the castle with Hogwarts... and better yet, you don't have to stay here to see the grounds! 
While a small fee will allow you entrance to the grounds and gardens, lunch reservations will allow you a sneak peak inside the castle (closed to guests not staying the night).

(If you'd like, you can add activities to your trip to Ashford Castle. We highly recommend flying falcons at the School of Falconry!) 
 

Your final stop of the day is at the magical 19th century limestone and marble Kylemore Abbey.

Tucked in the shadows of the mighty Seven Pins Mountain range, Kylemore Abbey cuts a striking figure against its majestic backdrop. A Benedictine monastery founded in 1853, the Abbey took seven years to build and remains in use today as an all girls’ school governed by Benedictine Nuns - the only Benedictine Community in Ireland - as well as opening its grounds to tourists. With its idyllic surroundings encircled by woodlands and postcard-worthy façade fronted by a glistening lake that perfectly reflects the grand building, Kylemore Abbey has fast become one of County Galway’s most popular iconic sights. 

While parts of the 1000-acre estate remain closed to the public, visitors can tour many of the most impressive sights, including the magnificent Gothic Chapel and the Abbey’s beautifully restored main hall. The 6-acre walled Victorian Gardens are another highlight, where pretty walkways, 19th-century flowerbeds and a series of greenhouses are divided by a gurgling stream and enclosed by a brick and limestone wall. The onsite crafts shop and café, where the nuns serve up home-cooked food, are also popular, with the teahouse terrace offering wonderful views over the nearby Connemara National Park. 


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Day 8:
Depart for home

Today you will bid farewell to Ireland. You'll return your rental car at the Shannon airport and board your flight home. 

...and until we meet again, 
may God hold you in the palm of His hand.”

TRAVEL DETAILS

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FLIGHT INFO:

Flights are not yet able to be booked and thus, have not been included in the price. 

We can revisit the flights in November/December for best rates. 

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HOTELS 

Tralee, Ireland
June 9 - 12, 2019


Ballyseede Castle
Ballyseede, Tralee, County Kerry Ireland
Confirmation # (all 3 rooms): 7370914676081
(breakfast included)

 

Co. Clare, Ireland
June 12 - 14, 2019


Dromoland Castle
Newmarket on FergusCo.ClareIrelandV95 ATD3
Confirmation #: 16377399, 1677401, 1677402
(breakfast included)

 

Galway, Ireland
June 14 - 16, 2019


Hotel Meyrick
Eyre Square, Galway
Confirmation #: 2509121, 2509120, 2509122
(breakfast included)

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Car Rental

Vehicle is manual, standard level

Picking up and dropping off at the airport


Registration form

*Price per person based on double occupancy
**If you are waiting for an updated passport number please provide this as soon as you receive it

Please type Carefully! Inaccurate information will result in travel delays and/or airline change fees.

Name (as it appears on passport) *
Name (as it appears on passport)
First (space) Middle Last ex: John Allen Smith
Date of Birth *
Date of Birth
Gender *
Phone *
Phone
Home Address (residing) *
Home Address (residing)
Passport Issue Date *
Passport Issue Date
Passport Expiration Date *
Passport Expiration Date
Travel Insurance *
Emergency Contact (will not be traveling with you) *
Emergency Contact (will not be traveling with you)
Emergency Contact Phone Number *
Emergency Contact Phone Number
I ATTEST *
I UNDERSTAND *
I AGREE *

Pricing details

package price (total for 2 people):
$2217

*Prices and availability are subject to change and are not guaranteed until completed through the booking process.

INCLUDED IN THE QUOTE

  • Car rental*
    • Standard (Opel Insignia, Toyota Avensis or similar)
  •  Hotel accommodations**
    • Tralee (3 nights)
    • Co. Clare (2 nights)
    • Galway (2 nights)
  • Tours/Events/Reservations
    • Skellig Michael Landing Tour
    • Aran Islands Ferry
    • Dunguaire Banquet
    • Ashford Castle lunch reservations (meal not included)
  • Most taxes and fees
    • Tour taxes and fees
    • Service fees and commissions

*Car rental is payable onsite only
**Some hotel reservations require you to pay taxes, VAT and resort fees onsite onsite

NOT INCLUDED

  • Airfare
  • Access fees to most historic sites (payable onsite only), unless included in a tour/experience
  • Fuel/extras for car rental
  • Most meals/beverages (unless included in hotel and/or tour) 
  • Some hotels may require payment of city taxes, VAT and resort fees onsite
  • Tips to guides, drivers and hotel staff
  • Optional Travel Insurance (due at time of payment)
    • Basic ($99/ea)
    • Trip+ ($182/ea)
    • Cancel for Any Reason ($189/ea)

 

SUGGESTED PAYMENT SCHEDULE

There are two payment options available to you. 
*payment schedule does not include insurance costs. Insurance is due within 10 days initial payment. 

Option 1:
(most secure, least likely to change in price and availability)
Full payment due now (plus insurance)
(car rental and one hotel is paid onsite)

Option 2: 
(prices and availability are subject to change and are not guaranteed until completed through the booking process and payment is in full)
(an additional 3% processing fee per payment is applicable with this option, additionally there is a $100/pp fee added to the bill for this delayed payment option)
Ask for pricing breakdown. 

 

REGISTRATION 

  • A completed registration form (per person) 
  • Photo copy of picture/information page of each traveler passport emailed to: christian@zone-travel.com 
  • DRIVERS ONLY: Credit Card Authorization form with copy of credit card and Government issued photo ID (like a drivers license or passport) 
    • Please make sure the credit card belongs to the driver of the rental car

 

FINAL PAYMENT

  • Payments not received on time will result in reservation cancellation without refund.
  • Additional bookings after the final payment deadline may result in higher prices, less availability and additional administrative fees.
  • Fee amounts imposed are at the discretion of Zone Travel.

 

CANCELLATION

Cancellation in writing must be received by Zone Travel prior to departure for appropriate refund on the land tour cost minus the following fees. Airline penalties are not part of the percentages below and vary based on each individual airline policy.

  • 30 Days Prior or less: 100% of tour cost

Commissions and Travel insurance are non-refundable.

 


Travel Insurance

TRAVEL INSURANCE - AVAILABLE FOR ALL PASSENGERS - DUE WITH INITIAL PAYMENT

Zone Travel LLC strongly suggests purchasing Trip Cancellation insurance. Be sure to check with your healthcare provider as most U.S. medical coverage will not cover you outside of the country.

Insurance costs are based on the total package cost, including air taxes and charges listed under "Included."

Approximate amounts can be given at time of reservation in order to purchase the appropriate amount of insurance.

 

BASIC PLAN:

Your may think you can't afford both the fun and the insurance to protect it. The Basic Plan is so affordable that you can have it all, while still staying in a budget. The plan offers existing medical condition coverage and 24-hour assistance services, allowing you to purchase your trip with complete confidence.

Trip Cancellation: Trip Cost

Trip Interruption: Trip Cost

Emergency Medical/Dental Coverage: $10,000.00

Emergency Medical Transportation: $50,000.00

Baggage Coverage: $500.00

Baggage Delay: $200.00

Travel Delay: $300.00

Travel Delay: $150.00

24-Hour Hotline Assistance: Included

 

CLASSIC TRIP+: 

When you book your family on an international vacation, you want the peace of mind that you purchased the right amount of coverage. Classic Trip+ doubles nearly all the post-departure coverage of the Classic Plan, including Emergency Medical and Dental, Emergency Medical Transportation, Baggage Loss, Baggage Delay, Travel Delay, and Missed Connection.

Trip Cancellation: Trip Cost

Trip Interruption: Trip Cost

Emergency Medical/Dental Coverage: $50,000.00

Emergency Medical Transportation: $1,000,000.00

Baggage Coverage: $2,000.00

Baggage Delay: $600.00

Change Fee Coverage: $250.00

Frequent Flyer Miles Redeposit Fee: $250.00

Travel Delay: $1,600.00

Missed Connection: $1,600.00

24 Hour Hotline Assistance Plus: Included

 

CANCEL ANYTIME: 

You can enjoy the extra flexibility of knowing you can cancel your trip for almost any unforeseen reason that the Classic plan does not already cover at 100% and receive 80% of their non-refundable trip cost back in cash. With features like comprehensive trip cancellation, primary emergency medical coverage and 24-hour travel assistance, the Classic with Cancel Anytime plan is there if life throws an unexpected wrench in your travel plans. Plan must be purchased within 10 days of the first payment date and must cover the full non-refundable trip cost ($10,000 maximum).

Trip Cancellation: Trip Cost

Trip Interruption: Trip Cost

Emergency Medical/Dental Coverage: $25,000.00

Emergency Medical Transportation: $500,000.00

Baggage Coverage: $1,000.00

Baggage Delay: $300.00

Change Fee Coverage: $250.00

Frequent Flyer Miles Redeposit Fee: $250.00

Travel Delay: $800.00

Missed Connection: $800.00

24 Hour Hotline Assistance Plus: Included


F.A.Q.

When is the deadline to sign up?
We recommend registering and making payments as quickly as possible.  
If you choose to wait, you can still book this trip; however, the price may increase and accommodations may change. 

 

How can I make a payment?
You can make a payment (Mastercard, Visa, Discover or American Express) by clicking one of the payment buttons above
or, if you prefer a check, you can make checks payable to "Zone Travel LLC"
Address: 
PO Box 44098
Columbus, OH43204