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Best of ireland and scotland

10 days

Ireland and Scotland—two countries with histories marked by wars, famines, and plagues all set against breathtaking lakes and crags etched into a landscape by glaciers. Both countries enjoy lush landscapes and traditions as well as great whiskies and beers. Their residents are known as storytellers, and their pubs are still the centers of social life where tales are told and newcomers are welcomed for a bit of craic, an Irish and Scottish word for good conversation and good times.

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  • Limited to 30 guests.
  • Prices start at $6,495 per person and are based on double occupancy.
  • There is a single supplement of $1,495.

There are no tours available at this time. To be informed when new tours become available, please contact us.

Day 1: Arrive in Dublin, Ireland

  • After an afternoon welcome briefing, enjoy a walking tour of downtown Dublin to give you a flavor for the local scene before heading to dinner.
  • Meals included: Dinner 
  • Hotel: Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin 4*

Day 2: Dublin

  • This morning you’ll explore Dublin and visit one of the most popular sites in the capital city: the Old Library at Trinity College. Trinity was opened in 1592 by the English to “civilize” the mostly Catholic Irish with a dose of Protestantism, though Catholics were not originally permitted to attend.  Today, most of the students there are Catholic, and its mix of men and women from around the world give Dublin the feeling of a college town. Most importantly, its library contains Ireland’s most iconic relic, the illuminated Book of Kells that contains the first four Gospels from the New Testament.  It was lavishly illustrated (the colors came from insects that monks ground up to use as ink) and written in Latin in the 9th century. 
  • In the afternoon, you can visit the Guinness museum.
  • Alternately, you are welcome to explore Dublin’s pubs, shopping and sites on your own.
  • Dinner will be served at a unique restaurant, The Church Restaurant & Bar, a 320-year-old church converted into a restaurant – with entertainment and excellent craic.
  • Special moment: Sample a bit of famous Irish Culture, Irish music, and dancing show at dinner.

 

  • Meals: Breakfast and dinner

  • Hotel: Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin 4*

Day 3: Dublin to Killarney

  • Hop on the Inter City train to head out of Dublin to kiss the Blarney stone and visit Blarney Castle, that mystical stone said to grace anyone who kisses it with great eloquence, but you’re just as likely to get a cold if you kiss it—we don’t advise it. The limestone rock was set into the walls of the Blarney Castle in the 15th century.
  • After lunch, take a short drive to Killarney where you’ll get to explore the town on your own.  
  • Meals: Breakfast and lunch

  • Hotel: Killarney Plaza Hotel And Spa 4*

Day 4: Killarney 

  • Start the morning with a scenic drive around the famous Ring of Kerry. You’ll go past ruins and enjoy glimpses of the sea, majestic mountains and quaint farmlands. At 111 miles in length, it’s about a 3.5-hour tour, but you’ll see the Irish landscape at its very best.
  • In the afternoon, take a private tour of Ross Castle, an impressive, 15th century stone structure on the banks of Lough Leane. Legend has it, a ghost haunts the place still today.
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Hotel: Killarney Plaza Hotel And Spa 4*

Day 5: Killarney to Limerick

  • Leave Killarney early this morning to visit the breathtaking, windswept Cliffs of Moher in County Clare. The cliffs are Ireland’s most-visited attraction, and the sweeping views of the sea make for breathtaking photos.
  • Have lunch at a charming harbor town along the coast.
  • After lunch, head to Limerick, the gateway to the Wild Atlantic Way,               

  • Meals: Breakfast and lunch
  • Hotel: Limerick Strand Hotel 4* or Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa Limerick 4*

Day 6: Edinburgh

  • In the morning, fly to Edinburgh and spend the afternoon at the jewel of Scotland, the famous Edinburgh Castle high above the city proper.  Built on thousand-year-old foundations, the castle has a bloody history.  It was occupied between the 11th and 16th century by Scottish nobility (Mary Queen of Scots had her only child here) before becoming mostly a military garrison.  History tells us it endured 26 sieges through the years, making it the most besieged place in Great Britain and one of the most attacked castles in the world. Tour the castle whose walls are imbued with tales of royal intrigue, brutal battles, and the cries of prisoners.
  • In the evening, take a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience the always-sold-out Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, a dramatic evening of military musicians, performers, and marching bands from around the world all set against the stunningly lit backdrop of Edinburgh Castle.  This is an event not to be missed.
  • Dinner is served at Forage & Chatter, a restaurant in Edinburgh’s West End whose menu showcases foraged items from the region as well as local meats and fishes.

 

  • Meals: Breakfast and lunch
  • Hotel: Kimpton Charlotte Square 4* or Hilton Edinburgh Carlton 4*

Day 7: Edinburgh

  • Visit one of the most remarkable buildings in Scotland, the Rosslyn Chapel, formerly known as the Collegiate Chapel of St Matthews. Built in the late 15th century, the chapel is best known for playing a role in Dan Brown’s 2003, mega-selling novel, The Di Vinci Code. But on your visit, you’ll also appreciate some of the finest pagan and religious symbols as well as the Apprentice Pillar, a magnificently carved stone column allegedly carved by an apprentice when his boss was away. It was so well done that the master mason, upon seeing the perfect pillar, killed the apprentice, though there is no convincing documentation of the murder.
  • Have lunch in Stirling before visiting the famous Stirling Castle and Stirling bridge. The castle was a powerful stronghold thanks to its position on a volcanic rock at the River Forth that separates the Scottish Lowlands with the Highlands. The name “Stirling” is derived from the word for “strife,” appropriate for country that for so long endured so many wars.
  • In the afternoon, explore Edinburgh on your own.
  • Dinner is served at Forage & Chatter, a restaurant in Edinburgh’s West End whose menu showcases foraged items from the region as well as local meats and fish.

  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Hotel: Kimpton Charlotte Square 4* or Hilton Edinburgh Carlton 4*

Day 8: Inverness

  • This morning, you’ll hop on the ScotRail train to Inverness where you’ll enjoy the breathtaking scenery as the train takes us through the winding and picturesque Scottish countryside.
  • After arriving in Inverness, visit the Glenmorangie Whiskey distillery to learn the fine points of creating a world-renown Scotch and, of course, sample the wares. You may spend your afternoon walking through the town of Inverness or park yourself at a whiskey bar and compare Glenmorangie to the competition!

 

  • Meals: Breakfast and lunch
  • Hotel: Mercure Inverness Hotel 4*

Day 9: Inverness 

  • Visit Inverness Castle and also the ancient cathedral city in the Scottish Highlands. In the Old Town, you’ll check out the Inverness Cathedral and the indoor Victorian Market selling food, clothing, and gifts. Like most cities in Ireland and Scotland, Inverness is a joy to stroll.
  • After lunch, take a short drive to Loch Ness. Loch Ness is a must-visit when exploring the Scottish Highlands. Famous the world over as the supposed home of Nessie the Loch Ness monster, this picture-perfect freshwater lake is also home to Urquhart Castle, one of the country’s most iconic fortresses.
  • Your farewell dinner in Inverness is served at Mustard Seed Restaurant, set in a former church known as a “standard bearer for casual elegance,” as one reviewer put it.
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
  • Hotel: Royal Highland Hotel, Inverness

Day 10: Journey to London – Choose one

  • Option 1: Today you venture to London via train for a 7.5-hour, scenic journey through the breathtaking Scottish Highlands and the English countryside, arriving in London in the afternoon.   
  • Option 2: If you’d like a faster way to London, there are frequent flights from Inverness. 
  • After arriving in London, the tour concludes and you say goodbye as you start your journey home or onwards to your next destination.

 

* Restaurants and Hotels are subject to change to equal or better

THE RUDY MAXA DIFFERENCE

When you let The Original Savvy Traveler arrange your trip through Europe, you are guaranteed peace of mind. Rudy Maxa’s team provides personal service and assistance from booking all the way through your journey.

What’s included:

 

  • Welcome package with luggage tags, tour information, and a personal gift from Rudy Maxa.
  • An exclusive experience with a small group (maximum of 20 guests.)
  • Rudy Maxa’s expert team lead by his Group Director will make your trip seamless, and magical. In addition to the team traveling with you, known and approved local guides with extensive knowledge will be show guests around.
  • The freedom to choose between multiple excursions and programs.
  • All tours, admissions, and entertainment.
  • Airport arrival meet and greet with transportation to the first host hotel.
  • Upscale, handpicked hotels inspected and approved by Rudy Maxa’s team.
  • All meals, including an upscale restaurant every night inspected and approved by Rudy Maxa’s team.
  • Luggage Butler Service: leave your bags in your hotel room in the morning and find them waiting in your room at your next hotel.
  • Transportation between cities in smaller luxury vehicles, high speed trains, or by air.
  • All gratuities.