County Clare
Castle & Palace Tours

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Our most recommended County Clare Castle & Palace Tours

Rail Tour: The Cliffs of Moher & Bunratty Castle Tour

1. Rail Tour: The Cliffs of Moher & Bunratty Castle Tour

Check in with us at Dublin Heuston Station at 06:40 to take the InterCity train service to Limerick. Upon arrival, we will join our coach bus and have a short tour of the treaty city, the setting for "Angela's Ashes". From there, we will head north to Bunratty Castle and Folk Village (admission included), then to a Doolin Pub for our traditional Irish lunch stop. Then, it's on to the majestic Cliffs of Moher on the country's wild Atlantic coast, one of Ireland's most famous and beautiful attractions. After that, we'll enter the unique lunar landscape of the Burren, rounding Black Head before heading along the shores of Galway Bay to reach Galway, the city of the tribes. After taking some time to take in this beautiful city, we will board our Dublin-bound train, arriving at Heuston Station at 21:00.

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Best of Ireland 6-Day Backpackers Economy Tour

2. Best of Ireland 6-Day Backpackers Economy Tour

Mix with local characters, and get a unique insight into Ireland’s legends, landscapes and people on a week long tour of the island, north and south. Explore city life in Belfast, Derry and Cork, go to the rocks of the Giant's Causeway, walk along the Cliffs of Moher, tour the Dingle Peninsula, and enjoy a glass of the black stuff at the Guinness Brewery in Dublin. The tour takes in the highlights of Ireland’s four corners, including all the sights of Northern Ireland, and includes a night at a traditional Irish pub, plenty of opportunities to dance the night away, hikes through bogs and castle ruins, and much more. Day 1: Dublin - Belfast Depart from Dublin at 9:00 AM, and begin your adventure at Drogheda, where you'll see the preserved head of St. Oliver Plunkett in St. Peter’s Cathedral. Cross the border at South Armagh. A fascinating evening in Belfast awaits. Learn why “Lonely Planet” described the capital of Northern Ireland as one of the top 10 “Must-See” destinations on earth. You can take an (optional) Black Taxi tour to see the Peace Wall and political murals. With accommodation in the Downtown area of the university area, great nightlife will be on your doorstep, while the peaceful Botanic Gardens are a short stroll if you prefer to relax among the scent of roses. Day 2: Belfast - Derry Today you will cruise the beautiful north coast. See - and cross, if you dare - Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge (seasonal and subject to a small optional charitable donation to the National Trust). Then, trace the footprints of Celtic giants as you walk the Giant's Causeway, Ulster's number one attraction since 2 million BC. Marvel at an estimated 60,000 hexagonal columns of basalt rock, formed by violent volcanic eruptions millions of years ago. Your guide will wax lyrical about how the giant warrior hero, Fionn McCool, built it to fight off the pesky Scots – according to local legend! You'll have plenty of time to take the high or low road hikes, before setting off for Dunluce Castle, ancestral home of the McDonnell clan. Learn how the castle came to ruin in 1639, when the kitchen collapsed into the sea during a great feast, and about the ghosts of the staff said to still linger. Spend the night in Derry, a jewel of a city for history buffs. Your accommodation will be in the ancient streets of the Downtown area, perfectly placed for the traditional music night at Peadar O'Donnells pub. Day 3: Derry - Galway Start the day with a hearty breakfast before an in-depth walking tour of Derry's historic walls (1601). Learn why the city is officially known as Londonderry, and the story of the long bloody siege of 1689. Go to the popular Bogside district, scene of the Bloody Sunday massacre of 1972, and inspiration for U2's classic anthem “Sunday, Bloody Sunday.” Next, drive through enchanting Sligo, visiting the sacred grave of the Irish poet and Nobel laureate, WB Yeats. Experience the archaeological richness of Ireland's northwest coast, before spending the night in Galway, the nation’s party capital. Your guide will take you to a cozy pub in the Latin Quarter for a glass of Guinness to the beat of electrifying Irish music and the sweet sound of the Gaelic language. Day 4: Galway - Dingle Today you will have the wild Atlantic Ocean by your side as you travel down the west coast, passing golden sand beaches, and maybe even a few dolphins and whales. Run around the lunar landscape of The Burren, the only place on earth where Alpine, Arctic, and Mediterranean flowers grow side-by-side. Hear about the horrors of the great Potato Famine of 1845-49 that saw more than a million Irish flee to the 4 corners of the globe. Next, gaze in awe at the Cliffs of Moher, and see why they were used as the “Cliffs of Insanity” in the movie “The Princess Bride.” Cross the River Shannon to Limerick, setting for Frank McCourt's blockbuster book, “Angela's Ashes.” Tonight you'll stay in your very own Irish pub, the Randy Leprechaun! Located in Annascaul on the Dingle Peninsula, it will be a great chance to mix with the locals and enjoy the characters of a genuine small village away from the tourist traps. Pull up a stool by the fire or dance the night away. In the morning, you can always take a swim with Fungi the Dolphin in Dingle Harbour, if you’re feeling brave. Day 5: Dingle - Killarney Take a short drive to the Gaelic-speaking fishing village of Dingle for some free time to shop and lunch in the charming center. Then, enjoy a scenic tour around Slea Head, with loads of time off the bus to take photos, or even take a wee hike. Your guide will tell you the folk stories and songs of the region as you visit Sleeping Giant Island and the famous 3 Sisters Mountains. Go for an (optional) horse-led car ride through Killarney National Park, and experience a tradition that has continued since the 1800s. You will spend the night in Killarney, a tour favorite for its huge range of activities on offer. Listen to traditional music, or discover great bars, restaurants and nightlife just steps from your hostel. Try singing a few of the songs your guide taught you during the day! Day 6: Killarney - Dublin Cross the Cork and Kerry Mountains, and kiss the Blarney Stone on top of Blarney Castle. Located in the rebel county of Cork, Blarney Castle is one of the most famous tourist sites in Europe, with great shopping opportunities. Kissing the Blarney stone isn't everyone's cup of tea, but a tour of the castle’s dungeons, caves and hidden bedrooms provides a great insight into a 12th-century masterpiece. Whether or not you need the gift of the gab, said to be yours after kissing the stone, dangling off the 300-foot battlements while being held by a middle-aged Irishman is too good an offer to turn down! After lunch, visit the beautiful Golden Vale, Ireland's finest agricultural land, and marvel at rolling fields and fresh pastures. Make your way through the battlefields of "Braveheart" for the tour’s grand finale in Dublin; a visit to the Guinness Storehouse. Say cheers to your guides and fellow travelers with a pint of the black stuff before you say your goodbyes.

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Ireland: 5-Day Escape to the Southwest Tour

3. Ireland: 5-Day Escape to the Southwest Tour

Discover the scenic splendor of southwest Ireland on a comprehensive 5-day tour of The Burren, the Dingle Peninsula, and the fabled Ring of Kerry. Stop at historic castles and monasteries, and wander the colorful fishing villages to sample fresh seafood. Enjoy dramatic views from the Cliffs of Moher, and stroll along the vast stretch of Inch Beach watching the local surfers. Transportation is by small minicoach, with accommodation in quaint bed and breakfast guesthouses for a more intimate experience. Day 1: Depart Dublin and head west through the farmland and peat bogs of Kildare and Offally counties. Stop at Locke’s Distillery, reputedly the oldest legal distillery in the world. Sample the local whiskey to experience the true spirit of Ireland. Continue west to the mighty Shannon River, and vist the early Christian site of Clonmacnoise. Admire its collection of churches, stone crosses, and round towers. After an afternoon stop in a traditional pub in one of the attractive villages, travel to Galway City to check into your base for the night. This lively student town has no shortage of good pubs and restaurants to enjoy in the evening. Day 2: From Galway City it’s only a short drive along the coast to The Burren, one of Ireland’s great natural treasures. Marvel at the limestone pavements, barren hills, and rare flora. See Christian settlements and ancient stone monuments. You will spend most of the morning exploring this unique area, stopping in Kilfenora for lunch. Known as the “Town of the Crosses,” there will also be time to visit the old cathedral before driving to the Cliffs of Moher. Marvel at this natural beauty, where the cliffs drop almost 700 feet into crashing Atlantic Ocean waves. Take a walk along one of the cliff top trails, and watch the seabirds at work. Alternatively, visit the award-winning environmental exhibition to learn about the region’s ecology. Then, travel south through County Clare, passing the famous golf course and beach at Lahinch to catch the ferry across the Shannon Estuary and into County Kerry. Go to the beautiful lakeside town of Killarney, your base for the next 3 nights. The pubs here are great for food and most have live music in the evenings. Day 3 Today, you will explore the Dingle Peninsula, one of the most scenic parts of Ireland. Your first stop in this heartland of Gaelic culture will be Inch Beach, a vast expanse of sand facing the Atlantic Ocean popular with surfers. From here, increasingly narrow roads lead onto the peninsula itself, through the town of Dingle and out to Slea Head. This is an area of ancient forts and dwellings that date back thousands of years. Visit some of the best examples along the way. Enjoy views of the Blasket Islands as they rise dramatically from the sea. Marvel at the mountains of the famous Ring of Kerry to your south. Weather permitting, time will be allotted for a walk on the beach or along the cliff tops. Learn why the area is important in Gaelic literature. Then, head back to Dingle town with its brightly colored buildings and busy harbor. Spend the rest of the afternoon at leisure, before returning to Killarney. If the weather is good you could enjoy an evening walk in Killarney National Park, just on the edge of town. Day 4: Today, you will take one of the world’s classic routes, the 100-mile Ring of Kerry. Depart Killarney and enjoy the views to Carrauntoohil, Ireland’s highest mountain. Join the coast road through Glenbeigh and Kells to Cahersiveen. Possible stops along the way include Daniel O’Connell’s birthplace, and the ring fort of Cahersiveen. Go to the little fishing village of Portmagee for a lunch of local seafood. Alternatively, cross to the island of Valencia and visit the Skellig Experience to learn about the small community of monks who once lived on the nearby rock island of Skellig Michael. In the afternoon, stop in picturesque Waterville, a favourite holiday destination for Charlie Chaplin. Stop again at the top of the Coonmakista Pass for one of the best views in Ireland. From here, the road drops down to sea level, where you will visit Derrynane House, the family home of Daniel O’Connell. You can stroll in the gardens and down to the beach, as well as look inside the house itself. Continue around the Ring, stopping at Moll’s Gap and Ladies View. There will also be time for a short walk to the Torc Waterfall before returning to Killarney. Day 5: The final day of your tour heads east through the mountains of West Cork and the market town of Macroom. Then, drive along the Lee Valley to Blarney Castle. Visit the castle and take one of the woodland walks to the mystical Rock Close. Explore the village of Blarney, stopping for lunch and a bit of shopping. There may even be time to kiss the famous Blarney Stone, although in peak season it can be very busy. In the afternoon, head to the Rock of Cashel to see the medieval monastery complex high above the town. Finally, go to Kilkenny, a bustling city with a fine castle and park, as well as some lovely riverside walks. Visit the National Craft Centre, or just hang out in one of the pubs for a last Guinness. Hit the road again for the final leg of your journey, arriving back in Dublin at approximately 19:30.

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Rail Tour from Dublin: 2-Day West Coast Explorer

4. Rail Tour from Dublin: 2-Day West Coast Explorer

Day 1 Check in Dublin Heuston station (Customer Service Desk) for 7:00 departure of InterCity train to Limerick (breakfast available). We join our coach here for a short tour of Limerick City and then to Bunratty Castle and Folk Park(admission included). On to the village of Doolin for O'Connors Pub. Next we visit the stunning Cliffs of Moher, Black Head, the Burren and Galway Bay overnighting in the heart of Galway City(3 star hotel accommodation - bed and full Irish breakfast) Day 2 At 10:00h we head into magnificent Connemara where John Ford filmed "The Quiet Man" in 1951, taking in Clifden, Kylemore Abbey (reduced admission rate applies to Abbey itself), Leenane and Killary Harbour or Roundstone, the Coral Beach and the Sky Road. See lots of breathtaking wild Atlantic coastline. We return to Galway for our return InterCity train to Dublin Heuston arriving at 21:00h. Prices are per person sharing - single room supplement applies Departs Daily (Monday - Saturday)

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From Dublin: 3-Day Cork, Ring of Kerry & the Cliffs of Moher

5. From Dublin: 3-Day Cork, Ring of Kerry & the Cliffs of Moher

Day 1 Check in Dublin Heuston (Customer Service Desk) for 07:00 departure of InterCity train (breakfast available) to Cork. Transfer by road to Blarney Castle and kiss the famous stone. After time for lunch and shopping and a flavor of Cork City, visit Cobh Heritage Centre, home of the "Queenstown Story," where the Titanic made its last port of call, and from where 3 million Irish people emigrated. Depart Cobh by train to Killarney, where you will be taken to your bed & breakfast accommodation, with en-suite facilities. There are numerous restaurants in Killarney, as well as traditional pubs-many with live traditional Irish music. Day 2 Embark on the famous Ring of Kerry tour, which is a largely coastal drive around the Iveragh Peninsula, with lots of stunning mountain and coastal scenery, including the famous Lakes of Killarney. After the day's touring, the evening is free in Killarney. Day 3 Leave Killarney for Limerick, to join the Cliffs of Moher tour. Take a short city tour of Limerick, and then visit Bunratty Castle, before lunch at a traditional pub at Doolin. You will have plenty of time to see the majestic Cliffs of Moher, before taking the coastal route around Galway Bay, with stops for photos. Return to Dublin by InterCity train, arriving at 20:45. * Prices are per person sharing Single Room Supplement applies

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4-Day Grand Atlantic Rail Tour from Dublin

6. 4-Day Grand Atlantic Rail Tour from Dublin

Day 1 Check in Dublin Heuston (Customer Service Desk) for 7:00am departure of InterCity train (breakfast available) to Cork. We transfer to Blarney Castle and kiss the Blarney Stone. After time for lunch and shopping we have a short city tour of Cork and then visit Cobh Heritage Centre home of the "Queenstown Story". We travel back to Cork station for train to Killarney where we are transferred to our comfortable Bed and Breakfast accommodation (with en-suite facilities). Evening free. Day 2 10:00 we embark on the famous Ring of Kerry tour which is a largely coastal drive around the Iveragh Peninsula - lots of stunning mountain and coastal scenery, including the famous Lakes of Killarney. Day 3 07.30 transfer from Killarney to Limerick, to join the Cliffs of Moher tour visit Bunratty Castle, Cliffs of Moher, O'Connors Pub at Doolin, Galway Bay, overnight Galway City in 3 star Hotel. Day 4 10.00 depart Galway for tour of Connemara, including Kylemore Abbey after which we depart Galway by train, arriving Dublin Heuston 21.00. Depart Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday, Thursday & Saturday * Price is per person sharing Single Room Supplement applies

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From Limerick: Aran Islands and Cliffs of Moher Day Tour

7. From Limerick: Aran Islands and Cliffs of Moher Day Tour

Departing Arthurs Quay, Limerick at 8:30 AM daily, your local driver/guide will take you via Bunratty Castle and Ennis to the picturesque village of Doolin in County Clare. Here, you will board the 11:00 AM ferry sailing from Doolin to Inisheer, the smallest and closest of the Aran Islands. The ferry passage takes between 20 and 30 minutes. Once on the Island, you will have 2 hours of free time to explore an ancient castle, church, shipwreck, lighthouse, beaches, cafés and pubs. Return to the ferry, departing at 1:45 PM and, on the way back, sail beneath the Cliffs of Moher. From the sea, you get a unique view of the majestic Cliffs of Moher. Upon return to Doolin, reboard the tour bus before your driver/guide takes you to the top of the Cliffs of Moher. Once there, entry to the eco-friendly visitor's centre, the Atlantic Edge, is included. After your visit here, sit back, relax and enjoy the picturesque scenery on your way back to Limerick. The tour returns between 8:30 - 9:00 PM.

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Rail Tour from Dublin: 6 Days All of Ireland

8. Rail Tour from Dublin: 6 Days All of Ireland

Day 1 Check in Dublin Heuston Station (Customer Service Desk) for 7:00 departure of InterCity train to Cork (breakfast available). We visit Blarney Castle, the Queenstown Story at Cobh, then train to Killarney for two nights B & B with en-suite facilities. Day 2 10.00 depart Killarney on Ring of Kerry tour. We have a wonderful day viewing some of Ireland’s most spectacular scenery, including Dingle Bay. We also see the Macgillicuddy Reeks, Ireland's highest mountain Carrantuohill, Moll's Gap, Ladies View and the world famous Lakes of Killarney. Overnight in Killarney. Day 3 07.30 transfer from Killarney to Limerick, to join the Cliffs of Moher Tour, visit Bunratty Castle, Cliffs of Moher, O'Connors Pub at Doolin, Galway Bay, overnight Galway City in 3 star Hotel (2 nights). Day 4 10.30am transfer to Connemara Airport for flight and tour of Inishmór, largest of the Aran Islands Day 5 10.00 depart Galway for tour of Connemara, including Kylemore Abbey after which we depart Galway by train, arriving Dublin Heuston 20.45 transfer by tram to three star hotel for two nights (room only). Day 6 Check in Dublin Connolly Station at 07.10 departure for the Giants Causeway tour. At Belfast we join our tour and head to the famous Antrim Coast Road crossing the lovely Glens of Antrim en route to Ballycastle and the Carrick-a-rede* rope bridge (Mid March - October only. Glimpse the Scottish coast on a clear day. We continue to the stunning Giant's Causeway next, seeing Dunluce Castle (photo stop only). We return to Belfast and our train to Dublin arriving at Connolly station at 22:20 for second night in three star hotel. Depart Monday/Wednesday, Thursday & Saturday (March to October only) * Price is per person sharing Single Room Supplement applies

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Cliffs of Moher Full-Day Tour from Dublin

9. Cliffs of Moher Full-Day Tour from Dublin

Discover the Cliffs of Moher, the number 1 attraction in Ireland on a full-day sightseeing tour. Depart Dublin in the morning by luxury bus, and drive across Ireland to the Atlantic coast, arriving at this natural wonder in the early afternoon. Stop en route at Doolin to experience Ireland's traditional music capital. Pull over for a hearty Irish lunch and pint of Guinness on the lovely western shore. Drive along the dramatic limestone coast and lunar landscape of the Burren to see the only place on earth where the Arctic, Alpine and Mediterranean flora grow together. Look out for 28 different types of orchids in season. Arrive at the cliffs to enjoy a short hike among the staggering rock formations. Soak up the stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and Aran Islands before entering the interpretive Atlantic Edge Exhibition and award-winning Visitor Center. Visit the set of the movies “Princess Bride” and “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.” Capture photos of the scenic spots along the way, including the traditional fishing village of Kinvara and the 15th-century Bunratty Castle.

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Cliffs of Moher, Connemara and Aran Islands Rail Tour

10. Cliffs of Moher, Connemara and Aran Islands Rail Tour

DAY 1 Check in at Dublin Heuston Station (Customer Service Desk) for a 7:00 AM departure with the InterCity train to Limerick (breakfast available). Join your coach here for a short tour of Limerick City and then to Bunratty Castle and Folk Park (admission included). Onto the village of Doolin for O'Connors Pub. Next, visit the stunning Cliffs of Moher, Black Head, the Burren, and Galway Bay with an overnight stay in the heart of Galway City (3-star hotel with bed and full Irish breakfast) DAY 2 10:30 AM transfer to Connemara Airport for a flight to Innismor where you'll join a tour of the islands, time for lunch at Kilronan before a visit to the magnificent ancient Fort Dún Aengus. Return flight and transfer. Back to Galway city late afternoon. Overnight as before. DAY 3 At 10:00 AM, head into magnificent Connemara where John Ford filmed "The Quiet Man" in 1951, taking in Clifden, Kylemore Abbey (reduced admission rate applies to Abbey itself), Leenane and Killary Harbour or Roundstone, the Coral Beach and the Sky Road. Take in views of the breathtaking, wild Atlantic Coastline. Return to Galway for an InterCity return train to Dublin Heuston arriving at 8:45 PM (snacks and full bar available). Prices are per person sharing - single room supplement applies Departs Daily (Monday-Saturday)

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What people are saying about County Clare

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 1,222 reviews

John is a lively character, full of songs, stories and sarcastic wit. He is a top notch expert level bus magician. He was able to effortlessly maneuver the massive tour coach through the tiny streets and byways of the Irish countryside. Along the journey he always had a quip of quick fact at the ready. Engaging, entertaining, a consummate professional! Ten out of ten would recommend.

Lovely day out with great stops. Our tourguide Gary was lovely and we had such a nice day. We stopped at the baby cliffs as well and in a lovely village. Would recommend this tour to everybody.

The tour with Alex as a fun story teller was great. He obviously ran the trip very well organised. We get the chance to learn the history while on board.

Should be wear warm clothes, especially against rain and wind, comfortable shoes.

It was cathartic. The Bus Driver John was amazing and funny. Worth every penny!