Tour from Dublin
Tours are priced individually according to the route, group size, distances & hours required, date(s) in question, start & end locations, overnight locations (where applicable) and remaining supply at time of booking.
"Mr Carr, a quick note of thanks for looking after our members so well. Feedback all round is that this has been a fantastic trip overall, with the Giant's Causeway a real highlight! You can expect many of us to return with families in the near future. Sincerely Yours -" - RP, The Punjab Club Lahore, Pakistan
Enjoy the comfort of private collection from the door of your hotel / residence this morning. Meet your experienced driver- guide for the day and begin your drive north from Dublin. We recommend starting early to maximise your time on tour.
Departing at 07:30 allows your driver to efficiently navigate onto the M1 Dublin to Belfast motorway ahead of much of the northbound heavy goods traffic arriving at Dublin Port and is also perfectly timed to facilitate your arrival at each of the major stops just ahead of / after the biggest groups.
Around half way you’ll notice the road signs change from kilometres to miles and from bilingual (English & Gaelic) to English only. Welcome to the United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland. Until recently guests would regularly see British Army helicopter patrols above the skies of the border region known as “Bandit Country”. Since the Peace Agreement of 1998, Northern Ireland is statistically safer than most US cities, so you can relax and enjoy the view.
Your journey continues north and towards the Antrim coast, through part of the scenic Glens of Antrim, a series of valleys that are well known for their beauty.
Since the release of HBO's Game of Thrones franchise an increasingly popular stop is the “King's Road”, otherwise known locally as the “Dark Hedges”. The Dark Hedges were planted by the Stuart family in the 18th century to create an impressive avenue to their country estate. Three hundred years later, the birch trees have formed an eerie tunnel said to be haunted by a “grey lady” – so we'll only stop here for a few photos!
Once up on the North Antrim Coast we'll stop at the village of Ballintoy, home to Ireland's most iconic rope bridge at Carrick-a-Rede. Traditionally used by local fishermen to check their salmon nets in the waters 30 meters below, the rope bridge connects the mainland to Carrick-a-Rede island. You’ll be rewarded with views of Rathlin and Scotland across the bay when the weather is clear.
*Unfortunately, the local government who administer the rope bridge have decided not to allow access to commercially operated tours from May 2022 as they have redesignated Carrick-a-Rede from a major tourist destination to a conservation site. Vehicles taller than 2 metres are now unable to approach the site due to barriers (Mercedes- Benz V Class / 5 passengers maximum) - if you wish to visit we'll need to arrange the tickets at time of booking.
Enjoy some fresh air and excellent views from a point overlooking the bridge and look forward to allocating some extra time elsewhere along the route.
Next up is a lunch stop – where your driver will be happy to outline to you some of the area’s better choices. Following the plans discussed with your driver first thing this morning you’ll either stop at a good pub along the coast or at the Giant’s Causeway itself.
Following lunch, you'll have plenty of time to explore today's highlight, (UNESCO) Giant's Causeway (at least one hour and thirty minutes). Formed of 40,000+ columns of hexagonal basalt rock – the Causeway really will take your breath away. We learn from legend that the site was constructed by Irish mythological hero Finn McCool as a location for battle with a Scottish giant – however, more scientifically minded guests may prefer learning about how volcanic activity some 60 million years ago is to thank for creating the site. Make time to check out the "Giant's Causeway Visitor Centre". Recently updated, the center offers historic exhibits and a beautiful gift shop.
Our Concierge staff will take care of your entrances, parking and during high- peak times arrange for expedited access - essential on days where some of the world's largest cruise ships are docked at the deep water ports of Belfast and Dublin.
One last sight this afternoon is the nearby ruins of Dunluce Castle, ancestral home of the McDonnell clan and one of Northern Ireland’s most romantic locations. Hear the tale of how part of the castle collapsed from the cliff- face in the 17th century and is now haunted by staff who were killed in the tragedy. Some photos here round off the afternoon nicely before we turn around and head back towards Belfast.
Those of you who have planned with the driver for a one hour stop in Belfast this afternoon (instead of this morning) might wish to check out some of the downtown sights at leisure. You'll get a flavour of Belfast’s Imperial Victorian architecture with highlights such as City Hall, Albert Clock and nearby shopping district. Alternatively, perhaps pop in to the Crown Liquor Saloon for a swift pint of Harp lager or dram of Bushmills “Black Label” Whiskey in what has to be one of Europe's most remarkable pubs.
NB: Belfast is only really featured as it is the most efficient way into / out of the region when based in Dublin. The stop there is essentially for refreshments and is not suitable for exploring. There is not enough time for the Black Taxi Tour or Titanic Belfast. For those interested in more in-depth exploration we also offer a private one day tour of Belfast and private two day tour of Northern Ireland from Dublin.
Depart Belfast for a comfortable two hour drive back to Dublin city in your private tour vehicle, arriving back to the location of your choice (This is a very long route. Estimated return is approximately 12 hours after departure depending on local operational conditions including weather and traffic).
You will receive your ticket (featuring your booking number) via email immediately at time of booking. There is no need to print the ticket. If you wish, you can simply show it on your phone or tablet.