The word “craic” means – entertainment, fun – and that is, to be sure, what we will enjoy during this late summer trip to the Republic. To Kilkenny, Kerry, Connemara, Galway and the midlands of Eire – 10 days of full on “craic” awaits us as follows:-
Unusually, for an overseas holiday, dinner is included each evening within the holiday price.
We meet at Holyhead Port and board our coach, no need to worry about hauling luggage around. We are then transferred onto the ferry for the enjoyable afternoon sailing to Dublin Port. Once in Dublin we make our way to Kilkenny, arriving in time for a simple mid-evening meal.
Here in Kilkenny you will want to browse a while until, mid-morning, we set off for another village, famous in all Ireland for its football prowess (Gaelic that is!) and for its steam museum and operating 3’ gauge steam railway. Here we sample traditional Guinness (optional) and soup & sandwiches in Dick Dunne’s bar. We can’t go to Eire without getting a whiff of the horses – so – to Kildare next for the National Stud & Japanese Gardens. By rail back to Kilkenny early evening completes a fine “local” day.
We are off to Kerry, by train from Kilkenny to Waterford, where we break our travels to visit the excellent Waterford and Suir Valley Railway. Then on (by train) to the most famous railway station in all Ireland (possibly the world!), Limerick Junction. Finally to Tralee via Mallow and a lovely transfer day sees us arriving in Tralee comfortably in time for a Guinness!
A relaxed day with time for “local” stuff in the morning before heading to Listowel for the unique Lartigue Railway. This is a superb re-creation of the famous Ballybunion Railway and provides a fantastic insight into how this unusual railway operated.
Today we head to Cork by train and on to Cobh for the excellent “Queenstown” experience in the superbly restored old station building, telling the story of Irish emigration to America. We then head to Killarney for a superb boat trip and complete the day with a scenic drive back to Tralee.
The beautiful Dingle Peninsular is Kerry at its best and is is the setting for one of Inside Track’s best days out. We will track the Tralee and Blennerville Railway, trace the line to Dingle, and marvel at the spectacular views around Slea Head and from the top of the Conor Pass. A gem of a day on the Emerald Isle!
Reluctantly we are leaving this lovely area today, heading north to the “midlands” of Ireland. However, this is no ordinary transfer day, as we cross the Shannon at Tarbert, and arrive in Moyasta for the West Clare Railway. Onwards then to Ennis for another railway revival, this time with Irish Railways from Ennis, across the Burren to Athenry. From here our coach transfers us swiftly to Athlone and the superb Radisson Blu Hotel for a three-night stay.
Think the scenic part of the holiday is over – no way (!). We set off by train to Galway City. Spend some time here to absorb the atmosphere in Eire’s most vibrant city outside Dublin, then head north through stunning Connemara towards Westport. This wonderfully scenic tour will include photo stops and a leg stretch at a remote railway junction. – Eire’s only village on a fjord! From Westport enjoy a terrific rail journey all the way back to Athlone.
The craic just gets better and better. Today we head up to the north coast to catch the iconic branch line train from the middle of nowhere to Ballina. Our coach transfers us from Ballina to Sligo where we catch a train to idyllic Carrick. Let’s sing traditional songs as we sail on the Shannon and then head down to Dromod to meet Michael and his amazing collection of everything and anything. We’ll dine here and then head back to Athlone for a last evening together.
We are heading home today, the craic is nearly over but we will still have fun as we let the train take the strain heading back to Dublin, before our coach takes us onto the ferry so that we can enjoy the crossing luggage free.
Describes itself as “Kilkenny’s Vintage Hotel”, and it surely is traditional. Great Irish food, town centre, lovely atmosphere. Perfect for our two night stay. Though it doesn’t have a lift, porterage can be arranged.
One of our favourite Hotels to be sure, a warm welcome, lovely Irish food, traditional breakfast, and sited in the heart of Tralee’s historic town. Perfect for our four night stay. As in Kilkenny, there is no lift, but once again porterage can be arranged.
From colourful, traditional town centre hotels in Kilkenny and Tralee we move up a notch with this place. This is modern, town centre, overlooking the River Shannon, lovely rooms, full-on facilities - relax and enjoy an “upmarket” experience. We have two evening meals here to conclude our Irish Craic.