Geological Tour of Ireland

Day 1: Arrival to Dublin, Trinity College

Arrive at Dublin Airport, proceed through immigration and pick up your baggage. As you will be unlikely to be able to check in to the hotel until after 2pm, drop your luggage at a secure storage facility at the hotel and visit Trinity College's Geology Museum & Library. A member of the faculty will give a short introduction to the College’s objectives and Ireland’s major sites, many of which will be visited during your sta.  Return to your hotel to check in. Dinner this evening is not included in the tour, so why not try one of Dublin’s excellent restaurants followed by entertainment in one of the many fantastic pubs. Overnight Dublin. BB

Day 2: University College Dublin – School of Geological Science, Dublinia

After breakfast, you will visit University College Dublin School of Geological Science. Continue to Dublinia and the Viking World, where exhibitions display Dublin in Medieval & Viking times. To end your day touring, enjoy a visit to Jameson’s Distillery and learn about the making of Irish Whiskey. Overnight Dublin DBB

Day 3: Loughcrew Cairns, Fourknocks, National Museum

This morning, visit Loughcrew where clusters of Megalithic Cairns which are dotted around the Slieve na Caillaigh hills. Onaward to Fourknocks Megalithic Passage Tomb, Fourknocks has a short passage leading into a wide pear shaped chamber with three smaller offset chambers. After some time here, return to Dublin and visit The National Museum of Archeology. Overnight Dublin DBB

Day 4: Boyne Valley, Belfast

Today we depart Dublin to discover the archaeological and historic treasures of the Boyne Valley. We will visit the heritage towns of Kells and Trim, the Hill of Tara as well as the famous visit the 5000 years old Megalithic tombs at Newgrange and/or Knowth. Onwards to Belfast where your evening meal awaits you. Overnight Belfast DBB


Day 5: Giants Causeway, Derry

We depart for one of Europe’s most wonderful coastlines where unique rock formations have stood as a natural rampart against the unbridled ferocity of Atlantic storms for millions of years – The Giant’s Causeway. A guided tour has been arranged.  After the visit, travel onward to Derry where, after checking in to your hotel, you will take an inner city guided walking tour. Overnight Derry DBB

Day 6: Marble Arch, Arigna

After breakfast, travel south to visit Marble Arch Caves, one of Europe’s finest showcaves. Your expert guide will take you through a puzzling variety of cave formations. Following your visit, travel to the Arigna Mining Experience. This informative center will provide you with a unique understanding into what coal mining life was like for the people in the Arigna Valley from the early 1700's until closure in 1990. Local geology and the formation of coal deposits are explained in the exhibition area and you will be able to experience what it was like to work in some of the tightest coal seams in the western world. Overnight Westport DBB

Day 7: Cong

A leisurely morning that is sure to revitalize your senses! You might decide to stay at the hotel or visit the Clew Bay Heritage Centre to discover more about this Georgian town. This afternoon, depart for Galway travelling via Cong, the site of many scenes from the classic 1952 movie The Quiet Man. Overnight Galway DBB

Day 8: Connemara

Tour the stunning Connemara region today with its remarkable scenery and dramatic scenes. Along the way visit Kylemore Abbey and the Connemara Marble Visitors Centre before returning to Galway City. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. The Quays area in the city is home to a number of energetic music pubs including the popular Quays Bar and of course a great choice of restaurants. Overnight Galway. BB

Day 9: The Burren, Cliffs of Moher, Bunratty

Today, visit the Burren, a karst limestone region of approximately 300 sq km which lies in the North West corner of Clare, composed of limestone surfaces, which are eroded in a distinctive pattern known as karren. Stop at the Aillwee Caves and Caherconnell Stone Fort and from there continue on to the Cliffs of Moher which rise up to 214 metres above the Atlantic Ocean. Visit Doolin Cave before travelling on to Ireland’s third city, Limerick. After checking in to your hotel, take the short drive to Bunratty Castle for an evening of fun at the Bunratty Medieval Banquet & Show. Overnight Limerick BB

Day 10: Dingle Peninsula

Today we will tour the magnificent Dingle Peninsula. Perhaps not as well known as the Ring of Kerry, the Dingle Peninsula is every bit as beautiful. The town of Dingle is a small fishing port where you will find .plenty of cafes, restaurants and pubs to have lunch. Then to the west of the town the scenery is rugged with views out to the Blasket Islands. Visit the Blasket Visitor Centre which documents the islands until they were vacated in 1953. En-route, visits to Dunbeg Fort and Visitors Centre and the Bee Hive Huts, subject to weather. Overnight Killarney DBB.

Day 11: Blarney, Cashel

This morning, travel to Blarney Castle where you may kiss the stone of eloquence! Onward to Cashel for lunch (not included) at Bru Boru, a national cultural centre at the foot of the Rock of Cashel. Time for class discussion over lunch. Overnight Kilkenny DBB

Day 12: Dunmore Caves, Wicklow

After breakfast, visit Dunmore Caves which are mentioned in the annals which tells of a Viking massacre at the cave in the year 928 A.D. After the visit we head back to Dublin via one of the most haunted places in Ireland - Wicklow Gaol. Overnight Dublin DBB

Day 13: Guinness Storehouse

After all the informative sites visited, it is now time for a bit of R & R. A visit to Guinness Storehouse is something that no visitor to Ireland should miss, especially the finale, a pint of the ‘Black Stuff’ in their 7th floor Gravity Bar! The rest of the day is free for last minute shopping or sightseeing. . The day will conclude with a night of entertainment at one of Dublin’s best traditional music evenings. As well as experiencing the great music and dance on offer, the group can even participate and learn a jig or two on stage in this fun and casual evening. Overnight Dublin BB

Day 14: Departure from Dublin

Travel to Dublin Airport in time to check in for your flight and that last minute duty free shopping.

BB    = Bed & Irish Breakfast
DBB = Dinner, Bed & Irish Breakfast

Entrance to sites will also be subject to suitable weather conditions, especially the cave visits. Should site visits not be possible, alternative attractions, such as museums, exhibitions etc, may be arranged.