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Off The Beaten Track Experiences
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This is definitely our most extensive adventure of Ireland and Scotland. This epic 21-day journey will take you off the beaten track to experience magical landscapes, spectacular coastlines, and awesome adventure experiences; not to mention exploring some of Ireland’s most legendary and historical sites.
Our journey starts in Dublin and brings us from the Wild Atlantic setting of Cork in the South to the Giant’s Causeway in the North. Here at Wild N Happy we believe that Ireland should be explored and experienced, not just seen through a bus window. That’s why we take you off the beaten track, stopping often to give you plenty of time to hop off the bus and take part in fun-filled activities, or simply relax and take in the breathtaking scenery at your own pace.
Dublin – Ashling Hotel, Parkgate Street, Arran Quay, Dublin 8, Ireland.
Edinburgh iCentre – 249 High Street, Edinburgh, Scotland.
09:00 am – Please arrive by 08:30 am for a prompt departure
Departing fromThe Ashling Hotel, Parkgate Street, Arran Quay, Dublin 8 at 9am.
Your adventure starts off in Dublin, Ireland’s capital, also known as the Fair city. Our direction is south to the rebel county of Ireland, Cork and its wild Atlantic coastline.
Along the way, we take a stop off at the Rock of Cashel, a spectacular group of medieval buildings set on an outcrop of limestone and home of the High Kings of Ireland. After lunch we continue our journey towards Cork, which is the starting point of Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way and where that evening you can relax and savour its picturesque setting and friendly atmosphere.
Rise and shine for an adventure along the wild and spectacular coastline of Cork and climb over mountain passes to reach the majestic setting of Killarney.
Along the way we will stop off at a Stone Age tomb called the Altar Wedge Tomb, which sits dramatically on the waterfront overlooking Toormore Bay. We continue our journey towards one of Ireland’s most southerly point, Mizen Head. You have the option of visiting the Mizen Head Signal Station* or take a stroll along the golden strand of Barleycove beach.
After we have satisfied our hungry souls, we will make our way over the mountainous terrain that separates Cork and Kerry before arriving in the picturesque town of Killarney. It is home to Ireland’s first national park with spectacular glistening lakes, beautiful nature, great food and a vibrant cultural atmosphere.
*Mizen Head Signal Station only available from Mid-March to October.
Today’s adventure takes you off the beaten track to unlock the real beauty of the world famous Ring of Kerry. Considered one of the most beautiful destinations to explore in Ireland, the Ring of Kerry offers dramatic landscapes of wild rugged coastline, golden beaches, glistening lakes, picturesque villages and spectacular mountain ranges.
Even better, we will take you on an incredible tour of the spectacular Valentia Island where you can delve into its incredible history and heritage, explore its magical setting on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean and if you are lucky get a glimpse (weather permitting) of the dramatic Skellig Islands (Star Wars famed).
After a well-earned bite to eat, we slowly make our way back to Killarney stopping off at many spectacular viewing points to learn of their historical importance and the opportunity to take that picture that will ensure an everlasting memory of paradise.
Today is your chance to discover the majestic setting of Killarney and Ireland’s first National Park. You can choose to relax and unwind, explore its national park and vibrant town or take one of many adventure experiences to truly discover Killarney. .
In terms of adventure, you have the opportunity to take a gentle guided hike of Torc Mountain with magical view of the Lakes of Killarney from its summit, explore Muckross Estate by bicycle or walking which is home to a spectacular 15th Century Franciscan Friary, Torc Waterfall and the majestic setting of Muckross House & Gardens. or finally combine one of those experiences with a mesmerizing kayak tour on the Lakes of Killarney in either the morning or afternoon.
That evening, you can experience Killarney’s great food offerings, vibrant musical nightlife or take a stroll through its majestic national park.
Dingle and Lahinch are our destinations today, as we explore these dramatic and beautiful areas of Ireland that are littered with archaeological and historical wonders.
Our first stop off is at Inch beach, famous for being the place where an inch is actually three miles long and where we take a short stroll along its golden sands and watch long rolling waves that come crashing ashore. Once aboard we head due west to the edge of Europe, also known as Slea Head. Feast your eyes on breathtaking scenery of wild rugged coastline, golden beaches and the magnificent Blasket Islands. We continue our journey around this rich and vibrant peninsula exploring its vast Gaelic culture and learning a cupla focal (some words) in Irish along the way.
We will also visit and have lunch in the colourful and vibrant town of Dingle before we make our way north along the edge of Europe to the spectacular setting of the Cliffs of Moher, where we will overnight in the beautiful coastal setting of Lahinch and a chance for you to experience great traditional music sessions, fantastic food and of course meet the locals.
This morning we will make our way to the spectacular Cliffs of Moher in County Clare. This ‘must see’ wonder of Ireland, the Cliffs of Moher, stretches for almost 10 KM and will capture your eyes and imagination as you gaze out in awe of its impressive setting.
Take the opportunity to explore the fantastic interpretation centre that will show you how this marvelous creation was shaped by nature’s hand and learn about its unique geological makeup.
After a bite to eat, we will make our way through the remarkable moon-like terrain of the wild Burren on route to the bohemian capital of Ireland, Galway. That afternoon, take the opportunity to soak in it’s vibrant streets, sample its wide variety of food offerings or take a tour exploring its unique historical places of interest.
Today is your opportunity to soak in Galway’s vibrant bustling streets and quaint cafes offer you a relaxing atmosphere to rejuvenate your batteries before we commence our spectacular northern section of the dramatic Wild Atlantic Way.
We jump from mainland Ireland to one of its most renowned island, Inis Mór, meaning big island. It is the largest of three islands that make up the Aran Islands.
Once we arrive on its limestone shores, you can either explore the island by foot, bicycle or jaunting cart, in which you can experience the island’s magnificent landscape of rocky fields, wild Ocean views and incredible monuments of Christian, pre-Christian and Celtic mythological heritage. Take in a visit to one of the most famous of them, Dún Aonghasa, which is a breath-taking fort that was built on a high cliff some 100 metres above sea level.
That afternoon, we make our way back to mainland Ireland before heading due west to the colourful coastal town of Clifden, where you can sample its famous culinary delights and traditional music nights.
Today’s adventure brings us to Connemara National Park and Kylemore Abbey. We will explore these majestic destinations, full of colourful scenery and wonderful history.
In Connemara National Park, take the opportunity to hike to the top Diamond Hill before we head to Kylemore Abbey for a bite to eat and time to explore its incredible history and unique gardens.
Later that afternoon, we commence our journey northwards passing Killary harbour and secluded picturesque lakes that line our path to the colourful town of Westport.
That evening, we will experience this vibrant towns legendary musical talent and culinary exploits.
You have the day to either relax, explore or take an adventure in picturesque Westport. It is famous for Croagh Patrick, Ireland’s holiest mountain and Clew Bay, which has an island for every day of the year.
Westport is rich in historical areas of interest and a great traditional music scene. Be sure to experience it!!
Departing Westport, we make our along the northern wild and rugged coastline of Mayo before arriving in Donegal Town, known as the fort of the foreigners.
We will take a stroll along the dramatic wild coastline at Downpatrick Head where you view a spectacular blowhole that plummets down to the wild Atlantic ocean, the ruins of St Patrick’s church building, a stone cross and the incredible site of Dún Briste (broken fort), a lone sea-stack standing close to the edge of the cliffs.
Afterwards, we make our way towards Ballina, where we will stop to have lunch. That afternoon, we make our way north towards Donegal Town via Bundoran where you can take the opportunity to dip your feet into the wild Atlantic Ocean or catch some of the most renowned waves in the world.
Feeling refreshed, that evening you can sampling some of Donegal’s best culinary delights and music traditions.
Ballyliffin is our end destination today, as we head north exploring the wilds of Donegal with magnificent views of the dramatic Slieve League cliffs which are although less famous than the Cliffs of Moher, can reach almost three times higher, 601 metres (1,972 ft).
Afterwards, we will continue our journey around the dramatic northern tip of Donegal towards Glenveagh National Park and Castle. Set in some 16,500 hectares of County Donegal mountains, you have the chance to discover picturesque lakes, wild glens and woods, a large herd of red deer and the 19th Century Glenveagh Castle.
That afternoon, we will make our way to Ballyliffin, where you can relax, unwind or explore this beautiful quaint village.
Today’s adventure is a real giant in many ways, as we take you along the dramatic coastal route of Ulster. We first head North to explore Malin Head, known as Ireland’s sunniest point and offers dramatic coastline views of the most northerly point of Ireland. Next stop Greenland!!
Once aboard, we make our way to the Giant’s Causeway, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its setting is famed for its unique rock formation of of about 40,000 interlocking basalt columns, the result of an ancient volcanic eruption nearly 60 million years ago or being Irish of course, we have a different version of how the causeway was really built which involves two giants, a fight and a bridge. We won’t spoil the ending for you now as the story is best told at edge of the bridge!!
Afterwards, we head to the vibrant coastal setting of Portrush, a seaside town famed for surfing, great food and where you can relax, unwind or simply gaze out at the majestic views before your eyes.
We depart Portrush and make our way to Belfast, where you can visit the Titanic museum, experience the amazing Black Cab Taxi Tour, explore Belfast with a Hop-on Hop Off City Tour or simply wander around its famous streets and experience great food.
That afternoon, we head south to the capital of Ireland, Dublin, where you have the opportunity to visit many of its historical attractions, jump aboard the Dublin Hop-on Hop-off City Tour or simply relax and explore its vibrant streets.
It is also our journey’s end, where we bid a fond farewell full of happy memories that will last forever. Remember, Ireland is now your second home away from home!
This morning you have the opportunity to explore Dublin before that afternoon we take an afternoon flight to Edinburgh.
Your adventure starts off in Edinburgh, Scotland’s hilly capital. Our direction is north west to Stirling where we will take our first stop on our amazing adventure at Stirling Castle.
The castle is one of Scotland’s most historically important sites and. Its origins are ancient and over the centuries it grew into a great royal residence and a powerful stronghold for the Stewart kings and queens.
It dominating setting upon a vast volcanic rock above the river Forth at the meeting point between Lowlands and Highlands offers spectacular views of the surrounding landscapes.
Afterwards, we continue our journey north to Fort William in the Scottish Highlands. A perfect destination for the outdoor enthusiast and where we will our first night beneath the foothills of Ben Nevis, Scotland’s highest mountain.
Today’s adventure takes us first to Steall Falls, a dramatic and beautiful route through Nevis Gorge, one of the best short walks in Scotland.
From here, we take the road north-west towards the Isle of Skye, famous for its wild picturesque scenery that will take your breath away. The Island is 50 miles (80km) long, the largest of the Inner Hebrides and its capital is Portree where we will perch our feet up for two nights. The following day we will discover this magical island as we will explore its unique landscapes, wildlife, rich history and geological wonders.
Today’s adventure takes you off the beaten track to explore the real beauty of the Isle of Skye. Our first stop is at the Old Man of Storr, one of Scotland’s most iconic places. The Old Man is a unique rock feature and offers stunning views out over the Sound of Raasay.
From there, we make our around the top of Skye to Duntulm Castle where you can have a picnic lunch and explore this magnificent setting. Afterwards, we will make our way to Neist Point Lighthouse, one of the most famous in Scotland and can be found on the most westerly tip of Skye and offers stunning views of the high cliffs and the lighthouse itself. It is a landscape photographers dream.
That afternoon, we make our way back to Portree where experience its vibrant streets, fantastic culinary delights, meet the locals or simply relax.
We depart the beautiful setting of the Isle of Skye, making our way east through undulating valleys and along picturesque lakes to Fort Augustus which sits on the edge of Loch Ness. Here we will stop for a nice bite to eat before making our way north for a quick visit of Boleskine Burial Ground (the final resting place of all the Frasers of the region) and for fans of Outlander, this is a place you really must visit, however, there is no guarantee you will meet Jamie Fraser!!
Onward we go and in search of the Loch Ness monster we take a stop at Dores. The village of Dores and its beach by the Loch is probably the most spectacular viewing point for you to get that memorable and lucky photo of Nessie, the Loch Ness Monster. The Loch itself is over 37 miles long and has more freshwater than all the lakes of England and Wales combined.
Afterwards, we make the short drive to Inverness where you can explore this colourful ancient cathedral city in the Scottish Highlands and sample its lively atmosphere.
This morning we take a short drive to Culloden which is a powerful moving site of the final Jacobite Rising – the last and most harrowing pitched battle to be fought on British soil.
You have the opportunity to explore the interactive visitor centre, view fascinating artefacts from both sides of the confrontation, experience the battle in the immersive surround cinema and interactive displays that reveal the background to the conflict. There is no escaping the emotions Culloden stirs up inside you as you discover how a bloody fight that lasted only an hour changed life in the Highlands forever.
That afternoon, you have free time to explore the beautiful highland city of Inverness, sample its wide variety of food offerings or take a tour exploring its unique historical places of interest.
Our adventure today brings us to the Cairngorms National Park, the largest national park on the British Isles which was established in 2003.
Five of the UK’s six highest mountains lie inside the park, alongside 55 Munros – mountains over 3,000 ft – which can be found here too. There are huge forests of ancient native trees, cascading waterfalls, more wildlife than you can imagine and where we you can take a variety of walking routes or take a watersports adventure on Loch Morlich.
Later that afternoon, we make our way south towards the hilly capital of Scotland, Edinburgh where we will say our goodbyes as our spectacular tour comes to an end. We really hope you have had an amazing time exploring some of Scotland’s most unique destinations and in your wee heart you will have memories that will last forever.
p.s. If you have the time, take the opportunity to soak in Edinburgh’s vibrant colourful streets, sample its wide variety of food offerings or take a tour exploring its unique historical places of interest.