The Scots and the Irish - 11 day tour
The Scots and the Irish
11 day / 10 night
Combine the friendliest of people, history and the scenic beauty of Scotland and Ireland to create the perfect tour. In 11 fun-packed days discover the great cities of Edinburgh, Glasgow, Belfast and Derry; tour through the picturesque Scottish Highlands; learn more about Titanic’s ill-fated maiden voyage and explore nature’s work at the Giant’s Causeway. These are just some of the many highlights that await you on this marvellous tour.
Price range: £1,785 - £3,590
Edinburgh - enjoy a tour of the city to visit the Royal Yacht Britannia and Edinburgh Castle
Isle of Skye - explore the scenic Sleat Peninsula and visit Armadale Castle
Belfast - join a local expert to learn the history of Belfast
Glens of Antrim - experience picturesque views of mountains, valleys and coastline
Cliffs of Moher - see the striking 700 feet cliffs that plunge into the Atlantic Ocean
Movie locations - Braveheart, Dracula Untold and Harry Potter
Hotel accommodation included
Full Tour Itinerary
Day 1 - Arrival in Edinburgh & Royal Yacht Britannia
Your Celtic trip starts at 2:00 pm when you meet your tour director at your Edinburgh hotel and drive to Leith for a tour around the Royal Yacht Britannia, the floating home of The Queen on many of her travels around the world. See the various parts of the ship, including staterooms and public spaces, together with photos of important visits. Return to your hotel for a welcome drink and you are free for independent dining this evening.
Visit our Getting to Scotland page for more information on rail and air links to Edinburgh.
Overnight: Dalmahoy Hotel and Country Club, Edinburgh (or similar) (2 nights)
Day 2 - Edinburgh City Tour and Edinburgh Castle
This morning tour Edinburgh to compare and contrast the wide streets and elegant mansions of the Georgian 200-year-old "New Town” and Princes Street with the medieval Royal Mile. Walk along part of the Royal Mile to view narrow lanes and townhouses, some of which are 11 stories tall. Visit Edinburgh Castle, which contains the Scottish Crown Jewels (known as the Honours of Scotland) and the Stone of Scone. The balance of the day is free. Dine at a Scottish Evening and enjoy a lively show with songs, stories and traditional dancing. On 9 - 25 August departures attend the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo at Edinburgh Castle in which case the Scottish Evening will take place the previous night.
Day 3 - Edinburgh - Blair Castle - Inverness/Nairn
Travel north into Highland Perthshire. Visit Blair Atholl Whisky Distillery to take a tour and sample a dram of the finished product. Enjoy free time in Pitlochry before making for nearby Blair Castle, the home of the Dukes of Atholl. There's a chance to view the castle's many rooms containing fine collections of furniture, portraits, lace, china and Jacobite relics. Continue through the majestic Highland scenery of the Cairngorms National Park to your hotel in Inverness, the principal City of the Highlands, (Sunday departures) or Nairn, a popular Victorian seaside resort (Tuesday departures).
Overnight: Columba Hotel, Inverness/The Newton Hotel, Nairn (or similar)
Day 4 - Inverness/Nairn - Isle of Skye - Ballachulish
Drive along the banks Loch Ness and enjoy views of this deep lake, famous for tales of the monster “Nessie”. Continue through wild Highland scenery, pausing for photos at iconic Eilean Donan Castle, then cross to the Isle of Skye by bridge. Drive through part of the island known as Sleat, to visit the Armadale Castle, Gardens and Museum to discover the history of the powerful Lords of the Isles. Return to the mainland by ferry and take the "Road to the Isles” through some of Scotland’s most popular scenery, stopping for photos at the Glenfinnan Monument which sits at the head of Loch Shiel.
Overnight: Ballachulish Hotel/Isles of Glencoe Hotel, Ballachulish (or similar)
Day 5 - Ballachulish - Robert Burns Country - Belfast
This morning enjoy final views of the magnificent Highlands as you drive south through the awesome peaks of Glen Coe and alongside the lovely shores of Loch Lomond. Stop briefly in Alloway to visit the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum. Born here in 1759, Robert Burns is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland and is celebrated worldwide as a pioneer of the Romantic movement. He is famed as the author of "Auld Lang Syne” which is sung throughout the World at New Year. Travel along the coast to Cairnryan for a short ferry ride to Belfast. Check in to your hotel where dinner is served.
Overnight: Europa Hotel, Belfast (or similar) (2 nights)
Day 6 - Discovering Belfast
Take a gentle walk with a Belfast guide to see the imposing City Hall in Donegall Square and Victorian buildings, including the Opera House and the Crown Liquor Saloon. Visit Titanic Belfast to learn about this famous liner through state-of-the-art displays. Browse around the city on your own in the afternoon. Tonight make the short drive to visit the Crosskeys Inn, Ireland’s oldest thatched pub, for dinner and entertainment.
Day 7 - Belfast - Giant’s Causeway - Letterkenny
Drive along the scenic route of the Nine Glens of Antrim, for splendid views of mountains and valleys. Our coastal drive brings us to the Giant’s Causeway, where we view the gigantic hexagonal columns have inspired legends about the mythical giant, Finn McCool. Stop to capture the scene at ruined Dunluce Castle then travel to Derry where a local guide will take us on a short walking tour around the defensive walls. Later head to Letterkenny in beautiful County Donegal for our overnight stay.
Overnight: Station House Hotel, Letterkenny (or similar)
Day 8 - Letterkenny - Donegal - Galway
This morning we travel to the Glenveagh National Park to visit picturesque Glenveagh Castle which sits overlooking Lough Veagh. The castle opened in 1873 and during the visit you’ll discover more about the history of this attractive mansion and enjoy time to explore the sprawling gardens filled with exotic plants. Later there is time to explore Donegal Town and enjoy lunch before heading to Belleek Pottery to watch the skilled artisans at work making delicate and highly decorative pieces. After the visit we continue on to Kilronan Castle.
Overnight: Kilronan Castle Hotel, Ballyfarnon (or similar) (2 nights)
Day 9 - Arigna Mining Experience and Carrick-on-Shannon Excursion
Visit the Arigna Mining Experience to discover how life was lived for a coal miner in the Arigna Valley. Explore the exhibition which chronicles over 400 years of history. Later relax in the pleasant surroundings of Carrick-on-Shannon before returning to your lovely castle hotel in the delightful town of Ballyfarnon.
Day 10 - Galway - Cliffs of Moher - Ennis
Travel to Galway city for a walking tour with a local guide to see Lynch’s Castle and Eyre Square. Travel through the limestone hills of the Burren, and view the Cliffs of Moher, a dramatic wall of rock that plunges to the Atlantic Ocean. In the early evening head to 15th century Bunratty or Knappogue Castle for a fun medieval-style banquet and check in to your hotel in Ennis afterwards.
Overnight: Temple Gate Hotel, Ennis (or similar)
Day 11 - Tour Ends in Shannon
Your tour ends after breakfast. Airport transfers are available.
Frequently Asked Questions
What can I expect on this Premium Escorted Tour?
If you enjoy the art of travelling in comfort and style then a Premium Escorted Tour is for you. You’ll travel in a group that is restricted to around 40 fellow travellers. Travel is aboard a state of the art motorcoach with air-conditioning, on-board WiFi, reclining seats and oversized windows. For your comfort there is an emergency washroom on-board too. An experienced tour manager will lead the tour and your coach will be expertly driven by a professional driver. In certain cities you’ll be joined by a local guide who will provide local insight and show you the highlights. These tours are fully inclusive of first class/superior class accommodation, transportation, admission fees and most meals. Savvy travellers appreciate that these tours have no hidden extras – all the ingredients needed for a great tour are included in the tour price. There are no optional extras for you to budget for during your holiday.
What kind of accommodation do you use?
The group will stay together in first class or superior tourist class hotels. Each has been carefully selected for comfort, quality and ambiance located in the best locations close to the shopping areas and the key sights. You will discover a pleasant balance of familiar brand hotels such as Hilton, Marriott and Accor together with locally owned family-run hotels. In rural locations your accommodation will be in the best available hotels. A full hotel list will be provided as part of your EDocumentation.
This tour will visit the Republic of Ireland, do I need a passport?
You will require a valid passport to enter Ireland – check that yours is valid, preferably until six months past your travel date. Always keep your passport safely on your person – never pack it in a suitcase. You need to show it at airports and for identification if necessary. If you are a citizen of an E.U. member state you will not need a Visa to enter Ireland but other nationalities should check visa requirements with their nearest Irish embassy or consulate.
How much luggage can I bring?
You can bring one suitcase and one carry-on bag per person. The maximum weight allowance and luggage dimensions varies by tour so you should check the tour documentation for the luggage policy that applies to your tour.
Do I sit in the same seat on the coach all the time?
On all tours a policy of seat rotation is used. This gives everyone the opportunity to sit towards the front of the coach and experience the best views. Your tour director will explain how the rotation system works when you join the tour. Please note that whilst seated you must wear your seat belt.
- 10 nights hotel accommodation
- Location: Edinburgh (2); Inverness/Nairn (1); Ballachulish (1); Belfast (2) Letterkenny (1); Ballyfarnon (2) and Ennis (1)
- Cooked/Continental breakfast (10)
- Welcome drink with your Tour Director
- Table d’hôte dinners (6)
- Scottish Evening in Edinburgh
- Dinner and entertainment at the Crosskeys Inn
- Bunratty/Knappogue Castle Medieval Banquet
Visits, Admissions and Experiences
- Admission to Royal Yacht Britannia, Edinburgh Castle, Blair Castle, Clan Donald Centre, Robert Burns Birthplace Museum, Titanic Belfast, Giant’s Causeway, Glenveagh Castle and National Park, Arigna Mining Experience and the Cliffs of Moher
- City tour of Edinburgh
- Tour of Blair Athol Distillery with tasting
- Walking tours of Belfast, Derry and Galway with local guides
- Tickets are included for the World-famous Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo on 09 to 25 August, 2020 departures
- Touring by luxury air-conditioned coach with extra-legroom, reclining seats, on board washroom and Wifi
- Ferry to the Isle of Skye
- Ferry between Scotland and Ireland
- All baggage handling and hotel tips are included
- Services throughout the tour of a professional Tour Director
- Service charges and taxes
Please check your tour documentation for the commencement time of the tour
From the Dalmahoy Hotel and Country Club
Edinburgh EH27 8EB
The tour will end in Ennis after breakfast on day 11
Check-in: 13:30 hrs
Tour Departs: 14:00 hrs
Tour Returns: 09:00 hrs
Child discount applies to children aged 8 to 18 years inclusive on the basis that they share a room with an adult.
We’re sorry but children aged under 8 years cannot travel on this tour.
Photo-ID may be requested to confirm discount entitlement.
The price of this tour includes hotel accommodation with en-suite bathroom.
Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo
Selected departures include a visit to this famous celebration of music, dancing and culture performed against the backdrop of Edinburgh Castle.
Please see the FAQ section for more information on this tour.