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The Best of Scotland and Ireland

5.0 stars(2 reviews)
Small Group

Explore the beauty of Scotland, Northern Ireland, and the Republic of Ireland as you traverse these Celtic countries by rail.

You are viewing the 2022 itinerary. Select your departure year
13 days From $3,995 per person
Travel among a group of like-minded travelers led by a professional tour manager
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2022 Tour code: GR-CEGA-22

About the tour

Three of the British Isles' most scenic countries combine on a vacation that showcases the best of these Celtic beauties. Beginning in Scotland, explore the majestic Highlands and its most incredible cities before traveling to both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, two nations of incredible culture and tradition.


What’s included


Day 1 - Edinburgh

We begin our epic Celtic adventure in Edinburgh at the 4-Star Kimpton Charlotte Square hotel, where you meet the rest of your group and Tour Manager. This evening, we enjoy a Scottish themed dinner. Overnight Edinburgh.

  • Dinner
Days 2-3 – Inverness & the Kyle Line

Today, we transfer to the station, where we take the train from Edinburgh to Inverness. On arrival, we visit the Glen Ord Distillery for a tour and a whiskey tasting. 

Day 3 sees us journey up to Kyle of Lochalsh on the Kyle Line, where we visit Eilean Donan Castle. After some free time to enjoy the castle, we return to our hotel via scenic Loch Ness. Overnight Inverness.

  • Day 2 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 3 - Breakfast
Days 4-5 - The West Highland Line to Glasgow

After breakfast, we transfer by coach to Mallaig, stopping off en-route at the Glenfinnan Visitor Center. There is some free time in Mallaig before we board the Jacobite Steam Train and travel to Fort William. Overnight Fort William.

On Day 5, we rejoin the West Highland Line, journeying from Fort William to Glasgow. Overnight Glasgow.

  • Day 4 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 5 - Breakfast
Days 6-7 - Belfast and Cork

We travel to Cairnryan to join the ferry over to Belfast, where we immediately embark on a guided coach tour of the city. After the tour, we check into our hotel. 

Our excursion on Day 7 is to the Giant's Causeway, stopping off at Carrickfergus Castle for some free time en-route. We also enjoy free time for lunch in Ballycastle. Our time at the Giant's Causeway is at leisure to explore before we return to our hotel. Overnight Belfast. 

  • Day 6 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 7 - Breakfast
Days 8-9 - The castles of Ireland

Today we visit Hillsborough Castle, the official residence for the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, and where the Queen resides while visiting Northern Ireland. After time to enjoy the castle, we coach to Dublin Heuston train station for the train to Cork. Overnight Cork. 

On Day 9, we explore Ireland's most famous castle, Blarney Castle. We also watch the Celtic Steps show this evening. Overnight Killarney.

  • Day 8 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 9 - Breakfast, Dinner
Days 10-11 - Ireland's natural beauty

We take a full-day coach trip around the stunning Ring of Kerry today, with time at leisure for lunch. We also visit the Kerry Bog Village Museum and enjoy a ride on the Jaunting Cars. Overnight Killarney. 

On Day 11 we transfer to Tarbet, crossing to Killimer by ferry. Here, we visit the Cliffs of Moher. We then travel to the Burren Center to learn more about the local history of the area. Overnight Galway.

  • Day 10 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 11 - Breakfast, Dinner
Days 12-13 - Dublin and home

After a morning at leisure, we travel by rail to Dublin, where there is some free time to discover the city. This evening, we enjoy dinner at the famous Merry Ploughboys Pub. Overnight Dublin. 

After breakfast on Day 13 you are free to make your way to the airport for your flight back home.

  • Day 12 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 13 - Breakfast

Additional information

Departure times

Departure times vary based on selected rail vacation. This information will be provided in your final documents. For more information please speak with your rail specialist.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular vacation with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.


Clayton Hotel Silver Spring, Cork

Clayton Hotel Silver Spring, Cork

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North Star Hotel

North Star Hotel, Dublin

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Cruachan Hotel, Fort William

Cruachan Hotel, Fort William

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Oranmore Lodge Hotel

Oranmore Lodge Hotel, Galway

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Castelrosse Hotel Kerry, Killarney

Castelrosse Hotel Kerry, Killarney

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Irish Railways
Jacobite Steam Train
The Kyle Line
West Highland Line

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5.0 stars5.0 / 5 · 2 reviews

  1. 5 stars
  2. 4 stars
  3. 3 stars
  4. 2 stars
  5. 1 star

Lynne G, Centerville, OH

5 stars

Submitted 11 Dec 2018

Loved my visit to Ireland!

Collected by Vacations By Rail

Stephen W, Morgantown, WV

5 stars

Submitted 17 Oct 2018

Every detail was covered to make the trip pleasant

Collected by Vacations By Rail

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