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The Best of Scotland and Ireland

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You are viewing the 2025 itinerary. Select your departure year
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13 days From $5,195 $4,695 per person
3.8 stars(26 reviews)
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Explore the natural beauty of three of the British Isles' most scenic countries

Travel among a group of like-minded travelers led by a professional tour manager
Save Up to $500

Offer Ends August 7th: Save up to $500 per person on 2025 Vacations, offer varies by tour. Prices as marked online.

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Mobility Rating 3

2025 Tour code: CEG25

About the tour

Experience three of the British Isles' most scenic countries on a vacation showcasing the best of these Celtic destinations. Beginning in Scotland, we explore the majestic Highlands before travelling to Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, nations with fascinating culture and history.

Travelling on the scenic West Highland and Kyle railway lines, we discover Scotland's historic castles, glistening lochs, and vibrant cities. Then, we drive from Belfast in Northern Island along the Causeway Coastal Route to admire the dramatic Cliffs of Moher and explore Dublin in Ireland.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 - Arrival in Edinburgh

Your Celtic adventure begins as you arrive at your hotel in Edinburgh. The heart of this monumental city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its medieval Old Town, Georgian New Town, and award-winning modern architecture. Explore at leisure until we enjoy a glass of prosecco and dinner this evening. Overnight Edinburgh.

Includes
  • Dinner
Day 2 - A whisky tasting in Inverness

We take the train to Inverness, a city nestled at the north end of the Great Glen where the River Ness flows into the Moray Firth. Known as the 'gateway to the Highlands', the city has a sandstone castle, a thriving culinary scene, and welcoming locals. While here, we visit a whiskey Distillery for a tour and tasting, before checking into our hotel for two nights. There is time to relax before dinner this evening. Overnight Inverness.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3 - The Kyle Line to Eilean Donan Castle and a Clansman Show

Today begins with a journey to Kyle of Lochalsh on the Kyle Line. Skirting alongside lochs and through wild mountain landscapes, admire the cascading waterfalls and towering peaks that roll by the windows. On arrival, we visit Eilean Donan Castle, one of the most striking castles in Scotland. Perched atop a tiny island at the confluence of Loch Duich, Loch Long and Loch Alsh, this iconic fortress has played a role in several films.

After exploring the castle's history and views, we continue by coach to Fort Augustus for a 'Clansman Show'. Our presenter, usually dressed in the Feilidh Mhor, explains how the 'days of old' Highland families ate, lived and survived. We learn the clan system and local culture as interactive demonstrations showcase traditional Highland dress and ancient weapons. Afterward, there is time at leisure to explore the city and find a place to enjoy dinner. Overnight Inverness.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 4 - The Jacobite Steam Train to Fort William

Our coach takes us to Mallaig this morning. Along the way, we stop to admire views over Glenfinnan Viaduct, the historic viaduct that featured in three of the 'Harry Potter' movies. There is some time to take photos before we board the iconic Jacobite Steam Train and travel to Fort William, our base for the night. The journey takes us through beautiful scenery, passing dramatic mountains, skirting the shores of lochs and winding past villages. After checking into our hotel, we enjoy dinner this evening. Overnight Fort William.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 5 - The West Highland Line to Glasgow

We join the West Highland Line for a journey to the city of Glasgow. The scenic rail route takes us through some of the world's most beautiful landscapes. We watch from the comfort of the carriages as the scenery outside the window changes, with the rugged Highlands giving way to the modern metropolis of one of Scotland's largest cities.

Arriving in Glasgow, we get to know the city on a coach tour. Afterwards, we check into our hotel, and you are then at leisure to explore. With an evening at leisure, you could dine at one of the local pubs or restaurants. Overnight Glasgow.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 6 - The ferry to Belfast and the Titanic Center

Bidding farewell to Scotland today, we travel to Cairnryan to board the ferry to Belfast. Our coach picks us up from the port and we drive into Belfast where we visit the world-famous Titanic Center where you can explore at leisure, learning about the construction of the ship and the stories of its passengers and crew. After checking in, we enjoy dinner at our hotel this evening. Overnight Belfast.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 7 - Giants Causeway Coastal Route

Today we head north along the Causeway Coastal Route, one of the most scenic drives in Northern Ireland. Heading toward the Giants Causeway, we stop enroute at Glenariff National Park before reaching the UNESCO heritage site. Here, we see the giant hexagon rock formations tumbling down into the Atlantic Ocean.

Continuing our explorations, we take in Dunluce Castle and, back in the city we enjoy a city panoramic tour before an evening at leisure. There is no dinner at the hotel, so you could take the opportunity to experience one of Belfast's many places to eat. Overnight Belfast.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 8 - Hillsborough Castle and Cork

Today we visit Hillsborough Castle, an official government residence and the spot where Queen Elizabeth II resided while visiting Northern Ireland. We enjoy a guided tour around the royal residence, set within 100 acres of gardens made up of meticulous ornamental lawns, peaceful woodlands and trickling waterways. Later, we take a coach to Dublin, crossing the border into the Republic of Ireland. Here, we board the train to Cork, where we check into our hotel for the night and enjoy dinner. Overnight Cork.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 9 - Exploring Blarney and Killarney

This morning, we head west into Kerry, the kingdom county. Our first stop is the village of Blarney where there is time at leisure to wander the beautiful gardens or, if you're up for a challenge, climb the 15th-century castle's 127 steps to kiss the stone of eloquence. In Killarney, the afternoon is at leisure to enjoy the town. You could shop for woollens or tweeds, visit Killarney House, or enjoy a traditional open boat trip around Killarney's beautiful lakes. After dinner at the hotel this evening, we're whisked off to watch a Celtic Steps show - a lively performance of traditional Irish music and dance. Overnight Killarney

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 10 - The Ring of Kerry

After breakfast, we enjoy a ride on a traditional Killarney mode of transport, a Jaunting Car. We then have a chance to soak up the dramatic beauty of Ireland on a scenic drive around the Ring of Kerry. On the coach, we're joined by an expert guide who narrates the area of tumultuous sea, windswept cliffs and mountains. Along the way, we see Torc Waterfall - a natural wonder, the breathtaking Moll's Gap, and Ladies View - a vantage point with amazing views. For dinner this evening, we head to Muckross House for an Irish Night in Quills farmhouse with traditional food and entertainment. Overnight Killarney.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 11 - The Cliffs of Moher and Galway

We spend this morning visiting Foynes Flying Boat & Maritime Museum. The exhibition is in the lovely village of Foynes, where Irish Coffee was invented and we can enjoy a cup of the traditional drink while here.

We then board the ferry to Clare, on the far west coast of Ireland. After disembarking the ferry, our coach takes us to the village of Doolin where we experience a boat trip into the Atlantic Ocean to view the mighty Cliffs of Moher from below.

Ireland's most iconic natural attraction and a UNESCO Global Geopark, the area is made up of towering cliffs that rise up out of the sea as waves crash against the jagged rocks below. Our hotel tonight is in Galway where we arrive in time for dinner. Overnight Galway.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Day 12 - Discovering Dublin

This morning we journey by rail from the West Coast returning to Dublin. On a coach tour of Dublin, our expert guide shares fascinating insights while we enjoy panoramic views from the windows of iconic landmarks like the Guinness Storehouse, Trinity College, and Dublin Castle.

Once we've checked into our hotel after the tour, you are at leisure for the rest of the day to explore more of Dublin's history, culture, and lively atmosphere. We meet back up this evening for a farewell dinner together at a local restaurant. Overnight Dublin.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 13 - Homeward bound

After breakfast this morning, our vacation comes to an end and you can make your way home with new memories. After a night in Edinburgh, we tasted authentic whisky in Inverness, travelled on the Kyle Line to Eilean Donan Castle and rode the Jacobite Steam Train to Fort William. We then went from Glasgow to Belfast, toured the Titanic Center, and visited the Giants Causeway before exploring Ireland's highlights, including Hillsborough Castle, the Ring of Kerry, and the Cliffs of Moher, finishing in Dublin.

Includes
  • 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.

Hotels

Ballachulish Hotel, Ballachulish

Ballachulish Hotel, Ballachulish

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Radisson Blu Hotel, Edinburgh

Radisson Blu Hotel, Edinburgh

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Randles Hotel

Randles Hotel, Killarney

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Hotel Winkelried, Stansstad

Hotel Winkelried, Stansstad

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Europa Hotel Belfast, Belfast

Europa Hotel Belfast, Belfast

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Voco Grand Central, Glasgow

Voco Grand Central, Glasgow

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The House Hotel, Galway

The House Hotel, Galway

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The Kingsley Hotel, Cork

The Kingsley Hotel, Cork

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Trains

Irish Railways
Jacobite Steam Train
The Kyle Line
West Highland Line

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Reviews

3.8 stars3.8 / 5 · 26 reviews

  1. 5 stars
    (7)
  2. 4 stars
    (8)
  3. 3 stars
    (10)
  4. 2 stars
    (1)
  5. 1 star
    (0)

Rebecca Schulte

4 stars

Submitted 15 Jul 2024

My friend and I both enjoyed this tour but if we tell others about it we would tell them that the tour is fairly wearing. There needs to be more time for rest and free-time. I didn't always like the meals served at the hotels. They were all too much alike. Sometimes plain food is good rather than gourmet all the time. Also because we had such a large group it took a long time for us to be served. I'm not used to eating a 9:00 at night. The tour director was great. She was very empathetic. Another woman and I were motion sick on the coach and she made sure that we were seated at the front which really helped. It would have been useful to know that we were going to spend a lot of travel time on a coach through windy country roads.

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John Hooper

5 stars

Submitted 04 Jul 2024

Very Great TRIP one complaint was too much travel by Coach. Constantly kept us busy doIng things. Very nice meals.

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Bob Donaldson

4 stars

Submitted 01 Jul 2024

lots of great stops along the journey. Pre trip communications was inadequate and needs to be reviewed.Two local guides bailed and the tour manager had to do her best we didnt get what were sold. Start times should be a bit later and would improve the quality / experience of the trip. Hope you find this helpful.

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Bronda Silva

5 stars

Submitted 01 Jul 2024

Joann was htest’

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Lucianne Blair

4 stars

Submitted 01 Jul 2024

Our tour manager Joanne was excellent. The sites we visited were beautiful and interesting. A couple of the hotels we used did not have lifts or air conditioners. If they used consistently good hotels this would be an excellent adventure

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Dora Nickell

5 stars

Submitted 01 Jul 2024

I wish we could have spent more time in many of the places. The train was fun but to much. All you saw was trees maybe more time on the bus, going through the small villages. Our guide Joann was wonderful so were all of the driver of the coaches

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