Discover Epic Ireland Adventures and Experiences!

My dream to visit and discover Ireland has just been fulfilled. I can’t stop talking about it because it was incredible. Now I want to share some insight on Ireland with you! 

Discover Ireland. 27 Epic Adventures. 9 Days 1 Iconic Tour

 Discover Ireland. 27 Epic Adventures. 9 Days 1 Iconic Tour - Blarney Stone Castle property

Experiencing the grandeur of Ireland partially filled my curiosity of wanderlust for the country. To discover Ireland is to fill a part of your travel soul that you never knew needed to be fulfilled. 

To discover Ireland you really need to find the best, most amazing tour operator and go. What I know is that if you find the right mix of things to see and do, and couple it with a skilled local, your time there will be like discovering a pot of gold. 

Our trip was hosted, and all the information contained within is based on my experience. Imagery and content are all subject to copyright.

Journey to Discover Ireland. Dublin to Dublin

Starting in Dublin, traveling around the entire country, and ending back at Dublin was sensational to Discover Ireland.

However, after touring, my desire to dig deeper and explore more is piqued. Touring Ireland offers both experiences and iconic adventures and if done well should result in a, “I want more” feeling.

All this means is that your journeys in Ireland exceeded your expectations but leaves you craving more! Now, is an opportunity to grow your bucket list options. 

Join me, visiting 27 Epic Adventures to Discover Ireland in just 9 Days via 1 Iconic Tour,as I travel, eat, adventure, and share my journey!

Discover Ireland.  9 Days Starting In Dublin No Planning Required 

Fret not, 27 is just a small part of iconic adventures and experiences throughout Ireland. How much can a tour of Ireland crunch in? You are about to find out! Buckle up and let’s go!

Every day before our trip, I would try to imagine what our tour of Ireland would be like. There is so much to see and do. Where do you begin planning? Also, where should your trip start?

Killarney? Dublin? There are so many unknowns. Being fortunate enough to be a guest of CIE TOURS International took the burden of planning off of me, and allowed me to just enjoy!  The 27 iconic adventures and experiences I am about to share only cover the bigger parts of our tour. Please note, that I could have written forever about all the ‘travel deeper’ moments we had.

Get ready for an experience of a lifetime!

Discover Ireland, Airport transfer

9 Days 8 Nights & 27 Epic Adventures to Discover Ireland: Tip Before the Journey

We traveled from the USA to Ireland and met up with our tour operator host CIE TOURS International in Dublin.

As a travel writer, globetrotter, and experienced jet lag athlete, I changed our itinerary to reflect our needs. I highly suggest you do the same!  We did not just go for the 9 Days and 8 Nights.  Instead, we extended our time in Ireland by 2 nights before and 1 day after the tour ended (please note, this article does not reflect those extra itinerary days we created)

Do this for your own well-being. The time change is a wicked beast and personally, I am not a plane sleeping kind of gal! Some people on our tour arrived on the day of the tour and were with headaches and severe fatigue.  That just kills the joy of enjoying what you have traveled so far.

The Game Plan to Discover Ireland:  CIE Tours 

 While we had to plan nothing, we did have to know where we were going each day and how the tour worked. CIE Tours International has its tour guide set the expectations the minute you get to your hotel. 

Meeting CIE Tours International Host and learning what to expect at Dublin Hotel

We chose CIE TOURS International for both their stellar reviews and to lend a grand overview of Ireland. As most of you do, we read reviews, and we wanted to experience Ireland with the ability to enjoy it.

This basically means that we did not want the challenge of both navigating and driving. Instead, we wanted to watch, adventure, and enjoy and then decide which cities we might return to for further adventures in the future. Driving was left up to our local guide and professional tour leader, BRIAN.

We met up with our group (28 of us) in Dublin, at our hotel. There we were given ‘whispers’ (headsets to hear background when touring), our backpacks, and all the itinerary. Additional details of looking for the posted bulletin boards each morning by the hotel concierge with updated itinerary, and mealtimes. 

CIE TOURS International and Being As Described. 

Epic Ireland tour

To discover Ireland is one thing, to discover extra charges, or other add-ons you were no told about is NOT how CIE Tours International works. 

  • Smart touring, with a fabulous tour operator, allowed us to see more of Ireland than many couples and families we know that have been there a few times. 
  • The depth of CIE Tours Internation for the Ireland Adventure tour is perfectly aligned with the balance of adventures. Some days we would walk about 2 miles and other days, up to 4.
  • We always were in control of how much we saw of an experience. Last, there were no add-ons. 
  • Our tour included everything it stated, as we booked. Meals, and Ferry Rides, and museums.
  • Extra costs, were simple Pub stops (cheers!), and tips for the guides and driver, shopping, and any meals not specifically stated in the itinerary!
  • CIE TOURS International offers a perfect blend of together with a group, coupled with travel deeper moments with your family or partner!

Per Our Guide: “Wheels Up. Asses In Seats” to Discover Ireland

That statement is exactly what our guide and driver used to say every single night before we would leave him. He means, that the wheels are on the road at 7:30 AM and your butts better be in because they don’t wait!

CIE TOURS INTERNATIONAL TOUR BUS

You work together as a group to be on time!  Every night before we went to our hotel room, we checked the lobby area, to read our itinerary for the upcoming day! Therefore, when Brian would make his rounds at breakfast and remind us of, “Wheels Up, and Asses in Seats!” we were present!

Travel Tip – Jetsetters are you ready for everything? Before We Discover Ireland 

Travel insurance is one of the most important parts of any trip! From medical emergencies to theft of personal property, to flight cancellation or embassy help, you need to have these potential vacation-ruiners under control ahead of the time!

Travel Insurance for distance traveling

For all of those reasons and more, I always use Allianz Travel. Allianz Travel insurance is a global provider and help is there 24/7. The addition of the free TravelSmart app makes it easy to access whatever I might need! Make sure to check into this insurance no matter where you are traveling!

No. 1 Dublin Discover Ireland 

Dublin touring Discover Ireland Trinity College

Walking & Bus Tour of Dublin ~ A Combination of each 

Our first adventure was driven by Brian and guided by a local. She stepped aboard, as we drove throughout Dublin, seeing parks, O’Connell Street, and some 18th-century Georgian houses.

Next, we headed via bus to Trinity College and the Book Of Kells.

at Trinity college Discover Ireland

Walking into Trinity College property was awe-inspiring, but that was just the beginning. Truly an architectural photographer’s dream and the campus is so full of life.

Book of Kells. Discover Ireland

Then it was time to go to see the Book of Kells and the awesome library with over 4 Million books in it! It is insanely stocked, and antique-looking, yet modern. It’s historical and you get chills just being in there.

Inside the Book of Kells Staircase

We had about an hour of time and then we left. Now we can say, “I have been there and experienced it!” and definitely iconic!

No. 2 Glendalough Monastic Site

If you have watched the Hallmark Channel you might have seen this featured destination on there! 

Glendalough Monastic Site Discover Ireland

A short hour ride from Dublin and we arrived at our first historically rich stop, Glendalough Monastic Site. Located in County Wicklow. Inside the visitor’s center are restrooms and more interesting information about the site.

Take your time, stay on the path and enjoy the view, the site, and learn the history. Our guide was very informative and allowed us to ask questions beyond the norm.

 Glendalough Monastic Sight to Discover Ireland

Our guide was fantastic, knowledgeable, and took us through the gravel-like pathways. We learned all about all of the gravestones and walked to the tower. The whole area is simply incredible and it should be on your list of things to do.

Once you are done visiting the archeological area, you can follow a path back to the Visitor Center. The scenery along the trail is beautiful, from the flowing water to the bridges you will walk over.

Discover Ireland. Glendalough Monastic + tower

No. 3 Waterford Crystal as we continue to Discover Ireland 

After a little, we continued on towards Waterford. Waterford is about 2 hours North Of County Wicklow. Right in time for lunch, we passed through the most quaint town in Clonroche, County Wexford, Ireland.

Discover Ireland Cloch Ban

We stop to eat lunch in the Cloch Ban. Want to see what we ate? Read more on the Cloch Ban here.  After lunch, we carried on and reached Waterford County and Waterford Crystal. Things are about to get really sparkly!

Inside Waterford Crystal

Inside Waterford Crystal 

Waterford Crystal to Discover Ireland

Waterford Crystal was everywhere, but that is not the story. Inside the factory, is where you want to be. We watched Waterford Crystal Artisans designing each piece of crystal, and of course, we watched the hand-blown crystal being made too.

Waterford Crystal on Discover Ireland tour

Once you are done touring the factory, you can shop in the House Of Waterford Crystal store. What a grand experience. I have several Waterford Crystal pieces so seeing them being created by the artisan was an absolute must experience.

This piece of the tour is all about the creation and how fabulous it is to watch the artisan’s craft. You will be awe-stricken by the talent. 

No. 4 The Streets of Waterford – Viking Triangle

History is just pouring out onto the streets and with the right local guide, you can learn all about it. We had one of the best because CIE TOURS International works with the top local guides in each leg of the tour.

 The Streets of Waterford - Viking Triangle Discover Ireland

This walking tour has lived on with my memories and I believe just visiting the streets alone was an epic experience, but what we are about to see was even better! History abounds is all I can keep saying as you discover Ireland. 

Viking Triangle Waterford

The Viking Triangle Walk-in Waterford

Our walking tour was fun. It was guided by the award-winning Jack Burtchaell and you definitely want to seek him out! The tour is about an hour and will cover thousands of years of history!

We met up with him and began the tour with our group. There’s a lot of beautiful scenery, and history here, so pay attention! I kept getting preoccupied taking pictures! 

Viking Triangle. Discover Ireland

From a huge Viking sword to multiple shops and beautifully landscaped buildings. Truly, the roads we were walking on looked like a scene out of a movie.  

Reginalds tower in Waterford, Ireland. Discover Ireland

Waterford was very walkable, but in February everything closes up by about 6:30P so we really did not have time to shop. We walked around as late as we could until dinner to see as much as we could.

Temperatures in February were about 45-50° Fahrenheit, so a light coat and layers underneath worked well every day, not just in Waterford! 

Viking Triangle. Discover Ireland  

Cobh – The Titanic’s last port of call.  No. 4

Discover Ireland CobhFrom Waterford, we continued North, on to the seaport town of Cobh, located in County Cork. 1 West Beach, Kilgarvan, Cobh, Co. Cork, Ireland.  When we arrived, we met up with a local guide and he filled us with loads of wonderful, epic history. 

Look at how quaint this village is. Goodness, it’s just something for the eyes to ogle at over and over. 

Discovering Cobh, The Quaint Seaport Town Rich in History

I also spent a little time taking pictures as Cobh lends itself so well to brilliant travel photography moments. You can already see that. 

No. 5 Discover Ireland  With a Visit to the Iconic & Epic Blarney Castle 

Looking at Blarney Castle before we entered was fantastic. Today it was not raining, just overcast. Almost daunting from below, isn’t it? We would walk a lot of stairs to get to the top! Do wear solid shoes that are comfortable for walking.

Blarney Castle. Discover Ireland

First I am going to tell you this was ONE of my favorite stops. From gardens, pathways, and The Blarney Castle with a view, this destination is everything.  Michael and I went straight up to the castle because Michael was set on kissing the Blarney Stone.

I loathe heights as you all know, so this was a very challenging 40 minutes for me. First, you have to wind up very steep, and triangular steps that seem to disappear as you step higher and higher. Then once you reach the top, all bets are off.

Blarney Castle Steps Inside as you Discover Ireland

These are the stairs or a glimpse of them. They get more narrow as your progress towards the top and when you need to leave the top of the castle, you descend on the most narrow triangles.All I am saying is keep this in mind if you don’t like tight spaces and small steps.

The descent is incredibly tough (if you are afraid of heights) as the ascent! ME!!

Blarney Castle. Ireland

The siding is high, and the view will leave you with no words, however, when you start walking to the Blarney Stone it is a difficult walk if you hate heights. The middle of the castle is on your left and wide open ALL the way down is the view. Who cared? I just did it. YOLO! 

Up at the top of the Blarney Castle

While your stepping over a large stone (speed bumps for lack of a better descriptor). Like every other step had to be watched or you would trip.  Admittedly, I was chided on by Michael and I wanted to see him kiss the Blarney Stone, or I would not have done this!

Me at the top of Blarney Castle

On my right was the wide-open Blarney Castle Gardens and the wind was blowing. Then, when I saw what Michael had to do to kiss the Blarney Stone, I almost fainted. Pretty much you have to lie on your back, while one guy holds your pants and another your legs.

Crazy great ways to Discover Ireland and remember Ireland. SO much more than picturesque! I loved it here, can you tell? 

Dana on bench at the Blarney Castle

So look at the castle on the left of this photo, if you think I was kidding about the craziest kiss to the Blarney Stone. NO netting beneath you and no safety harness (totally could not believe this) and you go out and kiss it upside down.  It was insane but so totally worth the memory! 

#6 Discover Ireland through roaming the Gardens of Blarney Castle  

Gardens of the Blarney Stone Property

Everything was not in bloom as we were there in February, but the roses were and they were so brilliant. That was totally unbelievable. In addition to the rose gardens, we sauntered through the poisonous garden. Everything in there was poisonous, as we were told. 

After we continued walking as much as we could (keeping an eye on the time) and headed to the Rock Garden.  

Now Let’s Shop to Discover Ireland souvenirs

Don’t hesitate, or debate, BUY! You simply can’t go wrong with the pricing and the selection at the Blarney Woolen Mills. The sales associates are the kindest I have ever run into in all my travels and the selection is HUGE! Make sure to get your FEXCO card and register it!

We purchased several sweaters, hoodies, tea towels, scarves, gloves, and more. Then, we did the best thing we could have ever done, we shipped it home for FREE! If you purchase $200 or more in products, they ship it to wherever for you FREE! Additionally, the FEXCO is already tended to so you don’t have to worry about it!

I have to tell you this over and over, shop here. Why? We saw other prices and other items. Not one other place had NEAR the selection of clothing, and trinkets that Blarney Woolen Mills did. 

Tip:  What I would have done differently is skip lunch. We lost too much time in the food court, as it was just too busy.

No. 7 To Discover Ireland You Got to be Kicking it in Killarney

Oh if this is just not the icing on the cake. The best town in Ireland to visit. It’s like a home away from home and charming with loads of pubs, tons of history and kind of central to many things to help you discover Ireland. It was our home base for 2 days! 

Killarney Discover Ireland

Here is where I will return, without a doubt. By far, it is the best part of the trip, next to the shopping at the Blarney Castle and the castle grounds. All the hotels are right in the center, and you can literally WALK to everything.

Side alleys, main road walkways, are all loaded with hidden pubs, stores, and restaurants. As far as your eye can see, you will find something to do. The nightlife at all of the pubs is fun as well with the music.

Killarney by night Discover Ireland

Each night spent in Killarney (we had 2), we navigated all around and walked for miles. We loved our hotel’s location as it was truly central, it was the International Hotel on Kenmare Place, right across from where the horse and carriage jockeys park, which is something else to discuss.

Step by step, we uncovered the fact, that there were more pubs, than shops, lol, if that is even possible! Now, to prove our thesis, we stopped in most of them for a Pint and moved on to the next!

Travel Deeper, and meet the locals in every Pub, just like we did!  This town allows you to in full immersive travel mode. Did I mention how many people knew Pittsburgh? Always asking us where we were from!

Killarney Streets Discover Ireland

No. 8 A Horse & Carriage Ride To Ross Castle 

To date, this may be the most romantic thing we have ever done. It was Valentine’s Day and we rode in a horse and carriage from our hotel to the Ross Castle.

Ross Castle Horse and Carriage Ride. Discover Ireland

Our tour guide made sure the rides would be available and as soon as we got back that day, we left. Read all about A Horse & Carriage Ride Fit For A Princess Here.

No. 9: Claddagh Jewelry Shopping 

Moriarity's For Claddaugh Rings Discover Ireland

Our first morning stop was to the Gap Of Dunloe. Moriarty’s. Shop here for Jewelry if you want a quality product from crosses to Claddagh rings. After touring Ireland from Dublin, to Glendalough, Cobh, Sneem, Galway, County Clare, and so on, I can attest that this is a great stop for Jewelry.

We did see other rings along the way, all either more expensive for the same product or less selection. I can concede you won’t find a better selection of products at the price point. (Note if you want a grab and go for a trinkety gift wait till Galway, there’s a shop there for $25 and under).

If for some reason you kick yourself for not purchasing here, there is one other stop, comparable, in Donegal City Centre, called the Irish House, so don’t dismay!

No. 10 ~ Ring Of Kerry

Ireland Ring of Kerry 2

The scenic drive through the Ring of Kerry was stellar. Stopping a few times to capture amazing, movie-like imagery and just to have a moment and live in the surreal. We rode around the Iveragh Peninsula, which is situated in Ireland’s County Kerry.

RIng of Kerry

Therefore we lodged in Killarney! Below, through the window of the bus, I took this photo of Kerry County’s River’s Edge B&B.  It’s incredible architecture and on my list for a stay next time around!

Ring Of Kerry to Discover Ireland

During our time traveling through the area, we had a multitude of photo stops and experiences, which I will cover below. Including Skellig Michael, endless coastal scapes, sea cliffs, and Killarney National Park, but that is not all, so read on!

No. 11 Valentia Island – Skellig Experience 

Coming to the Skellig experience, we encountered fierce winds to the point that we literally got out of the bus and right into the building. It was odd weather, but so fitting. 

Skellig Experience

With the weather, the Skellig experience could have just been viewing Skellig Michael, Skellig Rock Great from afar. Taking photos was nearly impossible due to the shifty weather. I will say this, the rich history of Skellig Michael, its development and those that inhabited it, truly was remarkable.

That’s about the best I could capture. 

No. 12~ IG-Worthy Village Of Sneem –  

Pristine, gorgeous and sprawling, yet intimate and welcoming, that’s Sneem. 

Village of Sneem

Sneem actually lies on the estuary of the River Sneem. As I stood atop the flowing water (An tSnaidhm, Inchinaleega East – in case you want location), I could not restrain myself from taking photos. Unique. Different.

Does it look like glacial grooves with water running through them? Stop and listen to the water trickling and moving. Solace. Peace. Tranquility in a quiet village.

Murphy's Bar in Village of Sneem

Then just walking through the little village of Sneem was an IG-Worthy moment as well. I stopped and got hot chocolate at Dan Murphy’s Bar, I have never seen a door so narrow. Get this, the door opened in 2 pieces!

Michael shopped in a small store there, named Quills. In fact, the deals here for tee shirts and hats were the best. Make sure to capture a picture with the Bronze Statue of John Egan in the square.

Village of Sneem

No. 13 ~Moll’s Gap – Scenic Experience

Grab your cameras, hold onto your hats, and snap away. This experience provides one of the finest views. You have to stop to see and experience. When you are driving the Ring Of Kerry, this is a mountain pass that runs from Kenmare to Killarney, in Kerry County.

Be prepared for gusty conditions, but eye-poppin’ views.

Moll's Gap Discover Ireland

No. 14 Ferry Ride X’ing The River Shannon Estuary 

The tour bus boarded the ferry and we were off to cross the river. My first sighting was the Tarbert Lighthouse.  In fact, it is a historical landmark at the Shannon Banks and very visible by both Ferry and from a walk to the end of the pier.

This is an EPIC moment! You will be able to say you rode a Ferry In Ireland!

Ferry Ride in Ireland

You have to take a Ferry at some point on your travels through Ireland, it truly is an experience not to miss, and one to mark off your bucket list!

Tarpoon lighthouse in Ireland

Cliffs of Moher is my No. 15 Epic Adventure to Discover Ireland 

The Cliffs of Moher are breathtaking, but getting there is even better. Look at everything from the coastlines to the farms. Picturesque, quaint, charming and so very Ireland! 

Ireland Cliffs of Moher Image with steps

Epic photography moments are right before your eyes!

Coastline on the trip to the Cliffs of Moher

Long before you reach the Cliffs of Moher you will pass lovely coastal villages. As we were driving along, I snapped this image in County Clare. Serene and independent on an endless property!

The scenic ride along the way lends a teaser of what is to come. The Cliffs of Moherare in the Burren region of County Clare and a must-go-to destination.

County Clare Region

Sure, you could sleep as we drove, but I did not!  Why would I want to miss incredible castles, greenscapes, and coastal lines? I am here to enjoy and I did every mile of the way. The Cliffs of Moher are sea cliffs that are stunningly beautiful and yet very dangerous.

Arrival at the Cliffs of Moher – Tips and Insight Per Us and Our Guide 

Respect all signage and not stand on the edge. Lives are lost daily, but if you stay on the path, you will be fine.

Cliffs of Moher

We used the viewing platforms to enjoy the 360° views. The vistas can all be seen using these platforms, they total three, so stop, gaze, jaw drop, and continue. This easily could be a 1/2 day adventure, if you take pictures and walk.

Ireland Cliffs of Moher Image with rain

First stop The main platform, which allows you to view the south cliffs and when clear, Hag’s head. Keep moving, there’s a lot more to see, not just this vantage point.

No. 16 O’Brien’s Tower – Under Construction When We Visited 

O'briens Tower Cliffs of Moher

While the wind was nonstop, and the rain kept coming we kept on climbing up! Our goal was O’Brien’s Tower, however, it was under construction (Feb 19′). The North Platform is up here, and it nearly the highest point of the Cliffs.

The proper name is Knockardakin. You can look North, South, East, and West at this platform. (Galway Bay and Aran Islands are viewed from up here !)

No. 17 ~ Galway

There are pubs everywhere, tons of people, and lots of shopping.  You will need a bit of time. Here is a quick look at a little of Galway!

Galway Pubs

Here is where roamed the streets of the old city, just a bit, a few blocks in fact. We stopped at a pub (of course) and enjoyed a pint, before heading to our tour bus to go to our host hotel the Ardilaun.

Also found in the city of Galway, this huge Claddagh ring. If you are looking for rings for Under $100 there is a huge shop in the city for rings at this price level.

Large Claddaugh RIng in Galway Sign

This place was bustling at 5 PM at night which signals a very lively stop! We need more time here next time!  I guess I was surprised because this was one of the busier stops in Dublin.

Galway Rode

What makes it so unique here, is that when you are walking along, you see displays like this. Literally on the window ledge. It’s decorative, beautiful and really celebrates Ireland. Now, seeing this told me, that if the store can put this on their storefront without the worry of theft. A testimony to the area!

Galway store

No. 18 ~ Our Walk By Ardilaun 

Once we checked in, we took a small walk and found this phone booth in the middle of someone’s yard. The rain began again, and it was coming down really hard, so we never, made it seaside to walk along with the villages.

A walk Ardilaun

No. 19 ~ Knock Shrine – The Experience  

A witnessed Apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary and a few other saints were said to have appeared on the altar of a gable wall in the church.The Knock Shrine is so present, yet quiet when you are there. 

Knock Shrine

Those who gathered watched for hours (2) and while it poured rain all around, none of them were touched by a drop! Yeah, we decided to bottle up some of the water, and bring it on home! More luck is always welcome!

No. 20 ~ Holy Water – Bring It Home 

While we were there, we stopped at the local bookstore, by the shrine and purchased simple empty water bottles. We then went to 2 of the 18 Holy Water Fonts that are right in front of the Apparition Shrine and filled them.

Knock Shrine and Holy Water.

Why? The water is considered to be blessed since the Apparition occurred here.  We can use all the blessings we can get!  It costs under $1 for 3 empty bottles, depending on the size you choose (remember airport security rules).

No. 21. Sheepdogs At An Irish Farm + Discover Ireland in a different way! 

Through the eyes of a local is the best way to discover Ireland and with this epic adventure, you will. It’s impressive, thorough, and educational. 

Sheepdogs herding experience in Ireland

I’ve never seen any dog so talented and obedient as Martin. We arrived at Atlantic Sheepdogs, Streedagh, Grange, Sligo, Ireland a working Irish farm.

Here we learned about color-coding sheep. and viewed a dog, who rounded up his posse (the mountain sheep).Ireland Sheepdogs

No. 22 Free Time To Discover Ireland in a Donegal Adventure 

Use your time here wisely and you will find castles and churches and good food. Walk, and learn! 

Donegal Adventure in Ireland

Upon arrival, it was lunch. Donegal is a bustling village and walkable. Our first objective, fill our bellies with really good eats. After disembarking the tour bus, we headed straight up the street.

Look down every alley and side street, or you will miss food, pubs, and shopping. I love this!

Donegal in Ireland

We wanted to be away from the crowds and all of the insane traffic right in the center! Walking out of the center we headed towards St. Patrick’s Church.

Need a suggestion as to where to eat when you get off the bus? >> Where To Eat Donegal Town Center Here.

Donegal in castle

From here, we visited the Donegal Castle and the church and shopped a bit.  It is very easy to navigate through the City Centre here, just watch the traffic when you cross. There are a lot of shops and restaurants and you could spend a few hours here!

No. 23 ~ Dunluce Castle

Dunluce Castle is located on the Antrim coast. This stop was a perfect complement to our Giant’s Causeway tour day. We stopped for about 10 minutes to capture photographs of this impressive castle.

There is a history behind it, but what makes it more infamous and iconic? Read on.

Dunluce Castle

You may recognize this because it is used as the location of Castle Greyjoy in the Game of Thrones. Therefore, it is iconic and a Must See while headed to the Giant’s Causeway!

No. 24 ~ I loved my Giant’s Causeway Adventure 

This was shaping up to be one of the best adventures ever, other than the wind, rain, and muddle trails, lol! I am not a person who loves heights or walking without a railing. Yet, I somehow conquered this.

The Giant’s Causeway is mammoth and it’s worth its own story, I wrote one for some fun facts! 

Giant's Causeway

We walked all along the trail to get to the part where it said, ‘Do not go any farther!’  Pretty much where you see me standing in the arch, is where we stopped our initial trek. If you want to see it, look at this picture above, and where you see that tiny split at the very top of the mountain is where we were!

Definitely Live In The Moment at the Giant’s Causeway! Epic. 

That’s me standing against the walls formed from volcanic rock.  Totally incredible views and nature to take in all around me!

Giant's Causeway from top and bottom

After the first part of our journey, we turned around, and headed towards a very tall stairwell, which again freaked me out! However, step by step, I managed my way to the top with a lot of coaxing from Mike and a few others we were traveling with!

Once we got to the top, we headed to the right, in order to head back to the main entrance, and it took a while to get there. The wind was fighting us every step of the way. I often felt that if a big enough gust of wind would come, I was going to be swept off my feet and off the cliff.

Well, that never happened, but this incredible view of the sea coastline did!

From the Top of the Giant's Causeway

No. 25 Titanic Belfast 

Wow, we are in Belfast, and that is so hard to believe isn’t it? I am not quite sure what is more exciting, being in Belfast or at the Titanic? 

Now we are going to visit an experience filled with Titanic displays and information. It is surreal, and yet at some points gloomy. Inside, the museum is filled with people.

If you are really into history, this could take hours.

titanic Belfast!

For us, it was about an hour and a half, to move through, learn what we could, walk it all, and move on! Did we have enough time?  Yes, we did. I was happy to see blueprints read, learn, and then go. Walk the shipyard, we did!

By the way, there is a great coffee and pastry shop inside, so if you are hungry, Enjoy it!

No. 26: Remember. Discover Ireland and History at Belfast Peace Wall 

This stop really was emotionally moving, and a must when in Belfast. I could feel the spirit of the walls, almost as though the past is here in the future. Feelings of sadness due to division by walls and lack of people out and about are emotions I will use to describe it here.

Belfast Peace Wall.

This area felt desolate and different from most other areas we visited in Ireland. Odd right? Not really, the history of Belfast was troubled and the fact that the gates close every night and open in the morning, even in times of peace is just odd.

Yes, we signed the Peach Wall in Belfast and we hope that their newfound peace lasts a lifetime! The area was sullen. Full disclosure: I would not have traveled to the wall on my own, but since we were with CIE TOURS, it was possible to see and experience with a great level of comfort!

No. 27 ~ The People’s Gallery of Murals in Derry  

the peoples gallery of murals in derry

Inside the Bogside of Derry exist several murals that truly ‘paint’ the truth of the troubled past of the area and the people.  Created by three brothers to portray the sad, and upsetting mistreatment of people in this area.

Every mural has a story, and every story has a sad tale attached. I have to say, this was the most exciting piece in Derry, aside from walking on the walls.

An Epic Irish Adventure to Discover Ireland 

We have now had the best overview of Ireland. From top to bottom and all the way around the country, we had a taste of a lot of different adventures, experiences, and cultures. Yes, we want to go back.

Touring as a group was easy and made navigating fast. Since we knew where we were going to be from the itinerary we chose ahead of time and usually had some built-in exploration time, I planned ahead.

I read, about all the places and marked things we would want to look for. Our driver and guide, always made us aware of how much free time we would have in an area. Additionally, we always were provided information on where to meet back up.

Truly was the trip of a lifetime, and I can’t even capture enough of what we did in this article. If you asked me if it fulfilled my Ireland curiosity, I would answer with a resounding yes.

Even if we never get back to Ireland, I feel that we saw and experienced enough to really say, “we’ve seen and adventured through Ireland! ~ Dana Vento XO 

 

About Dana

Dana Vento Lives In Pittsburgh, PA. She Is An Award-Winning Travel Blogger With A Love Of Culinary Too! Her Award-Winning Work Includes Features For Cabarrus, Niagara Falls USA, And Instagram Photography Of Southern Delaware Photography Winner.

Dana Is Also Often Featured In Google Travel Discover Topics Was Recently Named No. 46 Of 101 Instagram Influencers To Watch! Contact Dana To Cover Your Destination!♥ 

Her trip was hosted, and she is a brand ambassador for ALLIANZ Travel.