The Happy Traveler US
The Happy Traveler US…
Invites you to
IRELAND and SCOTLAND
August 11-23, 2020!
Had to postpone due to Covid-19 shutdown
If the world opens up...we are planning the same trip
beginning August 1, 2021!!
There is also a pre-trip in Ireland and a post-trip to
Welcome to Ireland!!
Day 1 ARRIVAL / GALWAY Hotel: Jury’s Inn Meals included: Dinner
Aug 11 Tuesday
Individual arrivals at Shannon Airport (SNN)
Meet fellow Happy Traveler US’ and our trusty tour escort Dimitri Wentner at the airport. Meeting place is the “INFORMATION DESK” on the Ground Floor of the Terminal. Meeting time TBA. You will be transferred by private motor-coach to the charming town of Galway.
After checking in at our hotel, you will have time to relax and unwind before meeting for a welcome drink and dinner.
We will have an historic walking tour in one of Ireland’s most charming towns, Galway. In the afternoon and evening there will be plently of free time to explore this vibrant city. The food,
theatre, music, boating, shopping and sights are wondeful here! Charming Galway
Day 2 GALWAY Hotel: Jury’s Inn Meals included: Breakfast
Aug 12 Wednesday
- 10:00 am: Meet in the lobby of our hotel for a sightseeing tour of Galway with local guide! This charming village is historically rich and a cultural hub of Ireland.
We will take a drive to County Mayo and the village of Cong a picturesque small village that is known worldwide as the place where the John Wayne/ Maureen O’Hara classic “The Quiet Man” was filmed. Cong is also famous for the discovery of the Cong Cross, a lavish gold and silver cross dating from 1123
The evening is yours!
Suggestions: Galway has outstanding live theatre, excellent traditional music, old world pubs, the shopping is excellent and Galway a food lovers haven!
Visit of Kenny’s Bookstore, open since 1940 – an independent family business the largest Irish book provider to the Library of Congress in Washington and supply to major university libraries around the world http://www.kennys.ie
Oscar Wilde described the areas we will visit today as ‘savage beauty’, a landscape forged from ice scoured rock and then covered in peat bog. We will driver through the Burren visit the majestic
Cliffs of Moher towering above the Atlantic Ocean.
Day 3 GALWAY Hotel: Jury’s Inn Meals included: Breakfast
Aug 13 Thursday
Breakfast at hotel
10:00 am: private coach for a leisurely day excursion. Today we visit:
- Bunratty Medieval Castle where we will enter a real castle and visit a medieval village set up as it would have been
The Cliffs of Moher in County Clare the Cliffs are one of Ireland's most spectacular sights. Cliffs boast one of the most amazing views in Ireland. For Princess Bride fans…these cliffs are known as “The Cliffs of Insanity”
The Cliffs of Moher
Your evening is free. Try the BEST “Chipper” in Ireland…McDonagh’s Fish & Chips Bar – conveniently located steps from our hotel.
Day 4 GALWAY to DUBLIN! Hotel: Trinity City Hotel Meals included: Breakfast and Dinner
Aug 14 Friday
Late morning departure time TBA: Meet in the lobby to be taken to Dublin by private motor-coach.
Along the way we will stop in Clonmacnoise, an early Christian site founded by Saint Ciaran in the 6th century on the banks of the River Shannon. The site includes the ruins of a cathedral, eight churches among other beautiful ruins (10th -13th century)
Arrival in Dublin is scheduled for late afternoon. After hotel check in there will be time to relax before meeting in the lobby for a special evening:
The Brazen Head Where we will discover from where Leprechauns and the Little People” really come!
We call this…an evening of food, folklore, fairies, storytelling and traditional Irish music in Ireland’s oldest pub, built in 1198. We will experience an enchanting evening of Irish folklore and storytelling while enjoying a candlelit traditional Irish dinner. There will be “renowned storytellers to take us into a world of the imagination with wonderful insights and magical tales about Irish life in times past. This wonderful evening includes live traditional Irish music and ballads.” The pub’s patrons included James Joyce, Daniel O’Connell, Michael Collins, Jonathan Swift, and Brendan Behan and you will see close up how Ireland’s magical past meets its vibrant present. Grafton Street Trinity College St. Patrick’s Cathedral Dublin.
Day 5 DUBLIN Hotel: Trinity City Hotel Meals included: Breakfast
Aug 15 Saturday
10:00 am: Meet in the lobby of our hotel for a private tour with a local guide.
Our tour includes the major sights of interest in this vibrant beautiful city:
St. Patrick's Cathedral Ireland's largest church and home to Johnathan Swift.
Jonathan Swift, the author of ‘Gulliver’s Travels’, was Dean at St Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin from 1713-1745.
General Post Office where the revolution of “Bloody Sunday” began is one of Ireland's most iconic buildings with its pivotal role in the 1916 Easter Up Rising.
Trinity College founded in 1592 by Queen Elizabeth I where many artist scientist and world leaders were educated. Including a visit to Old Library with the Book of Kells
The Book of Kells is an illustrated book created by monks in the 8th Century. The Book of Kells is one of the masterpieces of Western art and a symbol of Irish nationalism. Where it was produced is controversial. Some scholars suggest Iona, the island monastery founded by St. Columba. It is thought to have been the work of several individual scribes over many years, likely before A.D. 806. The manuscript was held at Kells until 1661 when it was moved to Dublin where it remains as the chief treasure of Trinity College Library.
Dublin Castle still used as a government building today the castle was originally erected in the early thirteenth century on the site of a Viking settlement
SUGGESTIONS for free time today and tonight:
In the afternoon:
Enjoy Dublin’s lovely down town which offers wonderful resturants, pubs, shopping and all sorts of entertainment and loads of interesting literary and other history. A wonderful place to stroll and people watch.
Historic Kilmainham Jail (Kilmainham Gaol gaol= jail) a major attraction for anyone interested in the history of Irish independence admission is $10 guided tours http://kilmainhamgaolmuseum.ie/
The building symbolizes the tradition of militant and constitutional nationalism from the rebellion of 1798 to the Irish Civil War of 1922-23. Leaders of the rebellions of 1798-1916 were detained and in some cases executed here. Many members of the Irish Republican movement during the Anglo-Irish War (1919-1921) were also detained in Kilmainham Gaol, guarded by British troops.
Guinness Storehouse . https://www.guinness-storehouse.com/en
A beer lover’s "must see". Housed in an old fermentation plant in the heart of St James's Gate Brewery, the now seven-story visitor experience tells the story of Ireland's iconic drink and beings to life the heritage of this world famous beer. Your journey begins standing at the bottom of the world's largest pint glass, which rises through the building. It is a dramatic story that begins over 250 years ago and ends in Gravity Bar, Dublin's highest bar where you will receive a complimentary pint of GUINNESS(R) while enjoying spectacular views over Dublin. Admission approximately $20
The National Gallery of Ireland https://www.nationalgallery.ie/
For art lovers, the National Gallery is wonderful! The Gallery is open seven days a week, 9:15– 5:30
Entrance is free of charge, except special exhibitions may cost an admission fee
In the evening:
Dublin Literary Pub Crawl http://www.dublinpubcrawl.com/ approximately $20 per person I have been on this walking tour and it is wonderful.
This literary pub crawl is not to be missed as you will have a glimpse into Dublin’s most loved and famous authors. This walking tour will deepen your knowledge of the wit and wisdom of Dublin’s legendary writers and poets. Have a pint in the pub where James Joyce wrote; stand on the steps where Oscar Wilde attended class and more. In an article about this public walking tour by the Irish Times it was said, the enthusiastic and talented “tour guides quote the greatest Irish authors and take us from the Duke pub through the cobble [stone] square of Trinity College and into several pubs in a nearby maze of narrow streets. He [the tour guide, a trained actor] quotes at ease from Joyce, Behan, Beckett, Yeats and even James Larkin and Flann O’Brien.”
The Musical Pub Crawl is led by two professional musicians who perform tunes and songs while telling the story of Irish Music. https://www.musicalpubcrawl.com/ approximately $20 per person I have been on this walking tour and it is wonderful.
The Crawl is best described as a moving concert; visiting two of Dublin's finest pubs.
2018 and 2019 Trip Travelers Choice Award Winner
This is a Listening tour with guaranteed seating
We run two separate tours per night, the early Crawl includes dinner
Great stories and traditional Irish music and dancing
Authentic, immersive and interactive evening of great music
The Famous Abbey Theatre https://www.abbeytheatre.ie
Wonderful acting fantastic productions! The Abbey Theatre was founded as a national theatre for Ireland by W.B. Yeats and Lady Gregory in 1904. These revolutionaries defined the ambition of the Abbey Theatre with their manifesto “to bring upon the stage the deeper emotions of Ireland”.
Day 6 DUBLIN to EDINBURGH Scotland! Hotel: Grosvenor Hotel Meals included: Breakfast and Dinner
Aug 16 Sunday
After an early breakfast at our hotel…
7:45 am: We leave by private motor-coach to the Dublin Airport
9:55 am: flight EI 3252 departs Dublin DUB
11:10 am: arrival at Edinburgh Airport EDI
NOTE: the United Kingdom is NOT part of the European Union, so you will need British Pound Sterling. It is possible to exchange euro or dollars at the airport FYI.
Welcome to Edinburgh Scotland!
Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland and is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe!
- We will drive from Edinburgh Airport to the beautiful and interesting Rosslyn Chapel, located just seven miles south of Edinburgh. We will have an introduction by local guide .
Officially known as The Collegiate Church of St Matthew the Apostle, Rosslyn Chapel has intoxicated every visitor, especially the writers of poetry and fiction - from Robert Burns, Sir Walter Scott and William Wordsworth in the nineteenth century to the novelist Dan Brown in the twenty-first.
- After checking into our hotel there will be free time relax before we meet in the lobby for an evening…
A “Scottish Evening” at Prestonfield House with dinner and live entertainment
Day 7 EDINBURGH Hotel: Grosvenor Hotel Meals included: Breakfast
Aug 17 Monday
Breakfast at hotel
10:00 am: private motor-coach and local guide for city tour of Edinburgh! We will visit:
- Edinburgh Castle
- The Scottish Parliament
- St Giles Cathedral
- The Royal Mile
- Canongate Kirk
- Calton Hill
- Holyrood Palace
- Princes Street
In the afternoon we will visit of the Scotch Whisky Experience where we will tour the distillery and sample famous Scotch Whisky!
The remainder of the day is free for further sightseeing, exploration and shopping!
SUGGESTIONS: Edinburgh has a number of excellent museums, such as the National Portrait Gallery, the National Gallery of Scotland, the Museum of Childhood, or the National Gallery of Modern Art
9:00 pm: Meet in the lobby of our hotel to go to the Edinburgh Royal Military Tattoo!
The Tattoo is an iconic Edinburgh institution, and a sellout year after year after year. Music, dance and precision display with the Massed Pipes and Drums, the Massed Military Bands, cultural troupes, singers and the poignant refrain of the Lone Piper against the stunning backdrop of Edinburgh Castle.
The actual timing and / or sequence of events during the stay in Edinburgh may change,
depending on the availability of tickets to the TATTOO PERFORMANCE.
These tickets will go on sale in December 2019.
Day 8 EDINBURGH and Outlander Tour! Hotel: Grosvenor Hotel Meals included: Breakfast
Aug 18 Tuesday
Breakfast at hotel
10:00 am: Meet in the lobby then we will take a private motor coach and local guide for visit of several of the locations where the TV series “Outlander” was filmed, such as Blackness Castle, scene of ‘Wentworth Prison’, Doune Castle representing ‘Castle Leoch’ and Culross Village
Appearing in many episodes of Outlander, Doune Castle is used as Castle Leoch, the seat of Clan Mackenzie.
It is here that we are introduced to many important characters, including Murtagh, Mrs Fitz and Laoghaire
MacKenzie as well as Colum MacKenzie, Laird of the Clan, his wife Letitia and their son Hamish. Much of the
castle was used in filming. The huge courtyard, and great hall were used to great effect, as well as the surrounding grounds.
PLEASE NOTE: you do not have to be a fan of the Outlander series of books or the mini series to enjoy this history rich day tour!
In the late afternoon we will return to the hotel and the evening is free!
Suggestion: This is the season for music theatre and comedy shows in Edinburgh. This evening is free so you can do as you please!
Day 9 EDINBURGH to PITLOCHRY Hotel: Dunalastair Hotel Suites Meals included: Breakfast
Aug 19 Wednesday
10:00 am: Meet in the lobby of our hotel to take a private motor coach on our way to the Highlands!
We will see:
Stirling Castle One of the largest and most important castles in Scotland, both historically and architecturally. Now off to…
of approx. 3,000. It is largely a Victorian town, which developed into a tourist resort because of Queen Victoria visiting the area in 1842 and the arrival of the railway in 1863. It remains a popular resort today and is particularly known as a centre for hillwalking, surrounded by mountains such as Ben Vrackie and Schiehallion. The town has retained many stone Victorian buildings, and the main street has an unusual period cast iron canopy over one side.
We will stop and visit at the Blair Athol Distillery, founded in 1798 by John Steward and Robert Robertson.
Blair Athol Distillery stands at the gateway to the Scottish Highlands in the picturesque town of Pitlochry, Perthshire. Set in open moorland south of the town, in the foothills of the Grampian mountains, Blair Athol’s ancient source of water – the Allt Dour – flows through the grounds from the slopes of Ben Vrackie, contributing to the whisky’s, mellow quality and smooth finish.
Afternoon arrival at hotel, check-in and free time on the beautiful grounds of our hotel!
Day 10 PITLOCHRY to Inverness Hotel: The Palace Hotel and Spa Meals included: Breakfast
Today we take a world famous train ride on the historic…Jacobite Express
Bright and early in the morning we will drive from the hotel to Fort William, to begin our famous train ride on The Jacobite Steam Train!
Described as the greatest railway journey in the world, this 84 mile round trip takes you past a list of impressive extremes. Starting near the highest mountain in Britain, Ben Nevis. The route is meant be one of the most beautiful in all of Scotland and yes…it is the same train that brought Harry Potter to Hogwarts!
10:15 am departure:
The Jacobite Steam Train High Crème Tea-Lunch aboard train is an option and must be booked in advance. The addition cost is $30: Cream Tea Details...
“Chunky, freshly prepared sandwiches made with locally sourced Mull Cheddar Ploughman's, Free-range Egg Mayonnaise with Rocket and Heather Honey and Arran Mustard Glazed Ham Salad - all on white and brown bloomer bread. Delightful savory and sweet scone, served with Scottish artisan strawberry preserve, Scottish butter and clotted cream. Followed by a selection of mouth-watering homemade cakes.
Cafetiere of Tiki triple certified filter coffee or a pot of breakfast or herbal tea.
Sandwiches in the Vegetarian version would be replaced with: Mull Cheddar Ploughman's, Free Range Egg Mayo and Rocket and a Roasted Vegetable and Mozzarella sandwich.
For the Vegan version the sandwiches would be replaced with: Roasted Vegetable Sandwich, Red Pepper Hummus, Avocado and Cucumber sandwich, and a Ploughman's with Vegan Hard Cheese, Pickle and Salad.”
Jacobite Ben Nevis Whisky Miniature Collection must be booked in advance. The additional cost $30:
Miniature Selection Includes 4 Miniature Bottles:
Supreme Selection Blend
Special Reserve Blend
Blue Label Blend
10 Year Old Single Malt
Please let The Happy Traveler US know if you would like to add either of these options.
- 12:25 pm: train arrives at MALLAIG
Our trip continues as we drive north to the Scottish Highlands! We will take a leisurely drive to Inverness. Along the way we will stop at the famous…
Isle of Skye!! We will board a ferry to visit this lovely famous island. The on to visit...
Eilean Donan Castle on of the most beautiful castles in Scotland!
Then we drive to Inverness and the evening is free
Inverness has always attracted people from far away. The city has welcomed Pictish, Celtic, and English settlers amongst others, and today a cosmopolitan mix of residents and visitors give Inverness an atmosphere which is unique in the Highlands.
As the regional center for the Highlands of Scotland, it is a vibrant city with excellent travel, retail, leisure and educational facilities.
The Old Town features 19th-century St Andrews Cathedral, the mostly 18th-century Old High Church and an indoor Victorian Market selling food, clothing and crafts. The contemporary Inverness Museum and Art Gallery traces local and Highland history.
Day 11 INVERNESS Hotel: The Palace Hotel and Spa Meals included: Breakfast
Aug 21 Friday
10:00 am: Meet in the lobby of our hotel for a private motor coach and local guide for city tour of Inverness including:
- Inverness Castle
- St Andrews Cathedral
- The Victorian Market
- The Old High Church
The remainder of the day is free for further sightseeing, exploration, shopping or a spa treatment at our hotel or relaxing!
If you are interested in purchasing a kilt:
The Highland House of Fraser is a family-run business that is known to produce some of the best kilts in Scotland. Set along Huntly Street, the store houses The Scottish Kilt maker Visitor Center, where you can learn about the history of the Highland costume through workshops, films, digital presentations, and clothing exhibits.
Day 12 INVERNESS Hotel: The Palace Hotel and Spa Meals included: Breakfast and Dinner
Aug 22 Saturday
10:00 am: private coach departure direction southwest towards the banks of Loch Ness where we will go out on a boat onto the lake!
Today’s tour includes:
This is one of Scotland’s most beautiful castles, where we will explore its medieval architecture and beautiful surroundings. Built between the 13th and 16th centuries, this medieval fortress set along the banks of Loch Ness. You can climb the spiral stairway that leads to the top of Grant Tower to enjoy expansive views of the freshwater loch and Great Glen. There is a stone drawbridge, dungeon, and a full-scale trebuchet siege engine, all of which gives us a glimpse into Scotland’s medieval times.
Loch Ness We are going on a boat cruise on the Ness– sightings of the Monster cannot be guaranteed!
Culloden Battlefield https://theplanetd.com/culloden-battlefield-scotland/ This historic site is of the last battle to take place on British soil in 1746.
Today, hundreds of people visit the battlefield each year to pay their respects to those who lost their lives on that day. The battlefield is located on Drumossie Muir, just five miles east of Inverness.
Farewell Dinner tonight we meet in the lobby of the hotel to walk to our celebratory dinner at the
Mustard Seed Restaurant
Hootenanny Pub after dinner we will go to the unique Hootenanny Pub for some traditional Scottish Music. The Hootenanny is next door to our restaurant!
Day 13 RETURN TO THE USA or continue on to the post trip to LONDON!
Aug 23 Sunday
Departure time TBA-there will be one transfer from hotel to Inverness Airport
Twelve overnights at moderate first class hotels in convenient and nice locations in twin or double occupancy, all rooms w/ private facilities
Experienced, multilingual Club Europa escort Dimitri Wentner!
Services of deluxe motor coach (equipped with A/C) as noted
Both airport transfers in Shannon / Galway and Inverness
(one group transfer on arrival day and one on departure day)
Boat cruise on Loch Ness
Sightseeing with local, licensed guides as noted in the itinerary
Entrance fees as noted in the itinerary
All applicable local taxes
Airfare Dublin -Edinburgh (both airport transfers included)
1 checked piece of up to 20 kg/44 lbs per passenger
Taxes and fuel surcharges as of October, 2019
Gratuities to escort, local guides and coach drivers
Transatlantic flight arrangements (assistance with ticketing available)
- Meals other than mentioned
- Drinks with dinners, unless mentioned otherwise
- Expenses of personal nature, such as passport, laundry, insurance, souvenirs etc.
- Airport transfers in the United States
- Travel Insurance (assistance with travel insurance available)
Cost of this wonderful trip:
All rates per person, land only, based on twin or double or triple occupancy
Rates per person, based on minimum 20 paying participants:
If you would like a private room there is a single supplement fee of $980.00
Let The Happy Traveler US know ASAP if you are interested in this trip!
A deposit of $2,000 saves your spot
Email: [email protected]
Pre-Ireland trip to Wicklow Mountains-Blarney Castle-Waterford-
Kilarney-Ring of Kerry
Post -Scotland trip with flight to London-Stonehenge and Bath
Contact [email protected] for more information