Our inaugural tour was a roaring success, our 17 new friends from the USA thoroughly enjoyed everything Ireland had to offer from the stunning scenery to the delicious local food prepared by some of our top chefs.
You can enjoy the trip with them by watching the video below.
This 9 Day Good Food Ireland® Tour is a Culinary & Cultural journey that takes you on a tour of the Irish Coast, viewing our dramatic sceneries, hearing about our history. Most importantly, this tour allows you to get to know Ireland by mouth. Every place has been tried and tested by our team before being approved to the Good Food Ireland® collection.
You will taste the best food produced and cooked on the island. Irish cuisine has deep roots in its history, and this is reflected in the respect with which producers and chefs treat the ingredients to create stunning dishes made with local and seasonal produce. With this tour, we give you a true taste of our Ireland.
DAY 1 ARRIVE IN DUBLIN, IRELAND:
Welcome to Ireland! After collecting your bags, you will meet with your driver in the arrival’s hall at Dublin Airport. You have arrived to the Land of a Hundred Thousand Welcomes or “Céad Míle Fáilte” as we say over here. We have one goal and that is to mind you and show you some of the things we love so much about Ireland! No good story ever started with an empty stomach and so first things first, we’re off to a local pub for your first full Irish breakfast of the week – Mulligan’s of Sandymount. What’s a full Irish breakfast, you wonder? Well, we think it’s the most delicious start to any great day, imagine grilled sausages and bacon, fried eggs, black & white pudding, roasted tomatoes, fried mushrooms and some baked beans to keep it traditional. Add toast with lashings of proper Irish butter, some tea and coffee and you’ve got the idea. It will keep you warm and well fed and will set you up for a magnificent day of sightseeing and discovery. From there, you will head into the Wicklow Mountains, to Glendalough where you will learn about St. Kevin’s 6th century monastery in the Glendalough Visitor Centre. Should you wish, you can take a walk through the deep valley to view the picturesque ruins of a round tower, churches and Celtic crosses. Glendalough offers the most magic views and weather permitting, you can even bathe your feet in the lake!
Later, you will continue to BrookLodge Hotel & Macreddin Village where you stay for the night and are free to relax in the afternoon before dinner. This evening enjoy dinner in the hotel’s famous and multi award-winning Strawberry Tree Restaurant, Ireland’s first certified organic restaurant and approved to Good Food Ireland® since 2011. Reflecting the seasons, this mouth-watering culinary experience will feature delicious organic and wild foods, many from nearby farms and surrounding lanes.
DAY 2 WICKLOW / WEXFORD / WATERFORD / CORK:
You will wake up in the heart of the lush Irish countryside so keep an ear out for the birds singing. It’s a joyful neighborhood and it’s one of the many reasons why County Wicklow is often referred to as the Garden of Ireland! After a gorgeous continental or cooked breakfast made with the best of local artisanal ingredients and served in a relaxing setting, you will start your journey
towards County Wexford and the 19th Century Johnstown Castle Estate, Museum and Gardens. The Estate is a place of great romantic charm and tranquillity but before you start and to set the tone right for the rest of the day, you will enjoy a spot of morning tea or coffee which comes with traditional home-baked scones, more delicious Irish butter and famous Wexford preserves. Now that you’re full of great food, the guided tour of the Castle is next on your list. This is followed by some free time to browse the Irish Agricultural Museum which is
one of the most comprehensive exhibits of farming and rural life in Ireland. You may also want to take a stroll around the lake and Victorian gardens.
The next stop is in County Waterford for lunch in Grow It Yourself (GIY) HQ Café. Grow HQ is a must-stop on any food loving traveller’s map and you are sure to find inventive dishes made with the freshest of ingredients, and most of the vegetables coming from the Café’s own gardens where they pick what they’ve grown straight from the ground and complement with produce supplied by local producers. After lunch, you will be visiting the renowned House of Waterford Crystal which offers a guided tour and the chance to view some stunning Irish artisanal craft.
You will finish the day in Cork, in the beautiful surroundings of the Hayfield Manor Hotel for dinner and, why not, a cocktail before resting for the night.
DAY 3 COBH / BALLYMALOE:
After a hearty breakfast, you will visit the charming harbour town of Cobh. There, you will meet with our friend Dr Michael Martin, renowned historian for a warm and informative walking tour that explores the heritage of Cobh, which was the last port of call of RMS Titanic. The town is famous for its rich history but let’s not forget its visual appeal, after all Condé Nast ranked it amongst the 25 most beautiful small towns in Europe in 2019. Take a beat and look up to the hills for rows of candy-coloured houses.
Later, you will head over to the world-renowned Ballymaloe House, one of the first approved members to the Good Food Ireland® collection. Here you will have lunch and meet with the Allen family, widely credited with having established a new, modern era in Irish food and raised its international profile. After lunch, you will pop over to nearby Ballymaloe Cookery School, Organic Farm & Gardens brought to fame by owner Darina Allen, who is also a Good Food Ireland® Ambassador. Dubbed “The Julia Child of Ireland” by the San Francisco Chronicle, Darina has written a number of best-selling books and presented multiple TV series. Meeting Darina is no small deal in Ireland so come with your questions! Her knowledge on all things Irish Food knows no bounds and to try her recipes is to love them. Do ask about her potato soup, one of the easiest and tastiest Irish recipes you make at home. Enjoy a memorable guided walking tour of the Organic Farm and Ballymaloe Cookery School Gardens. This is a gloriously easy way to spend a day. Later, you will return to Hayfield Manor, where your evening is free and where you can make the most of all the fun things Cork has to offer.
DAY 4 CORK / SKIBBEREEN / KILLARNEY:
After breakfast, you will depart from Hayfield Manor and make your way to West Cork to visit the fascinating Ummera Smokehouse which has been in operation for over 50 years. There, you will take part in their Smoked Irish Salmon Experience. Ummera Smokehouse is all about sustainability and since 2006 they only smoke organically farmed Irish salmon and it can truly rival some of the best smoked salmon in the world. From there you will move onto the market town of Skibbereen and to The Church Restaurant to be precise. What’s interesting about this location, apart from the delicious fare made from fine Irish produce bought locally, is the history of the building. It was a Methodist Church from 1833 to 2003 when it was transformed into its current form which has been feeding friends and visitors ever since!
Now that you’re well fed, your driver will take you through the beautiful Beara Peninsula, a trip which takes you from Glengarriff in County Cork to glorious Kenmare in County Kerry, you will stop to take the time to admire some of the most breath-taking scenery in Ireland. You will see the intriguing Kenmare stone circle, drive over the Caha Mountains and take in the jaw-dropping beauty of Moll’s Gap where you can admire the picturesque views of the lakes before arriving in Killarney, a busy tourist town. This is a fun stop.
Killarney is full of life and there is a great buzz about the town, people are friendly and here for the craic! Get in and chat with the locals over a cuppa or a pint in the local pub. The atmosphere is cheerful and at times downright electric! You will be staying at The International Hotel Killarney for the next two nights, a hotel that dates to the mid 1800’s and is steeped in local history. Take the time to visit their Library which houses their collection of historical pieces. To give you an idea of the importance of this building, you should know that back during the Famine (1946-1947), the Sisters of Mercy set up a temporary Hospital in the building to care for the victims. Dinner tonight is in the hotel’s Shelbourne Suite, an elegant room with old-world charm and flair. Quietly luxurious comfort is the mood here, with a menu that calls on both the traditional and modern side of our national cuisine and that reads like a Who’s Who of the county’s best food producers.
DAY 5 THE RING OF KERRY:
You’ve heard of it, you’ve read about it, you might even have seen it in the movies, today is the day. Today, you travel the road that winds around the beautiful Iveragh Peninsula, better known as The Ring of Kerry. It is undoubtedly one of the most magical places in all of Ireland. Here mountains, valleys, lakes and sea blend into a landscape that is often breath-taking beyond words. If the weather is clement and the view clear, you might see majestic Skellig Islands. Skellig Michael once housed an intense and quiet man called Luke Skywalker, have you heard of him? The last of the Jedis, a young woman called Rae went there to find the hermit, and together they saved the world.
Lunch today is at The Smugglers Inn in the beautiful town of Waterville and Wild Atlantic Way. The Smugglers Inn is renowned for its cosy atmosphere and for serving only the best seafood available at any given time. If it’s not sustainable, fresh, wild and Irish then it’s not on the menu! After lunch, your driver will give you a tour of the bay, taking a number of stops which will allow you to marvel at the spectacular scenery. In the evening, back in Killarney, you will enjoy an Irish Whiskey Tasting Experience. From deeply peated to pot still via single grain, whether you like it plain, on ice or with a drop of water to open it, Irish Whiskey has a something for everyone.
DAY 6 DINGLE PENINSULA / ADARE:
Today is a great day filled with more gorgeous scenery and delicious food which will begin by a drive out to the beautiful Dingle Peninsula where you will stop at a family oyster farm for a tour and more importantly a tasting of the famous Cromane Oysters which are farmed in the peninsula and drink from the tidal waters of Cromane. These oysters are loved by seafood connoisseurs the world over and their clear and savoury flavour will wake you up and shake up your taste buds. They are a true taste of Ireland and we are so excited for you to taste them. The Dingle peninsula is a Gaeltacht, a unique area where the Irish language is preserved, so you might even get a chance to practice your Irish!
The next part of your drive will take you to the Gallarus Oratory, a tiny stone church, built between the 6th and 9th century, which preserved Christianity in Ireland; from there, you will go on to Slea Head where you will see the curious beehive huts. The driver will stop at various viewing points, every single one more spectacular than the last. You will view the Blasket Islands, quaint harbours and beaches dotted along the Wild Atlantic Way. There will be time to explore the town of Dingle, a colourful fishing port, where the locals are friendly and where, sometimes, if you get lucky, dolphins come to play!
Lunch today is Dingle Bay Fish ‘n Chips. You can’t come to Dingle and not have Fish’n Chips, it’s the law. Once you’ve painted the town red, you will continue to Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel near the beautiful village of Adare in County Limerick where you will dine and stay the night. Tonight’s menu specialty is Irish Grass-fed Beef. If you love our butter and dairy, you will love our grass-fed beef, it is absolutely world class and melt in the mouth.
DAY 7 CLIFFS OF MOHER / DUBLIN:
After a delicious breakfast you will depart and head to the Burren and the dramatic, near-vertical Cliffs of Moher, which rise 700 feet above the pounding Atlantic waves. From the cliffs on a clear day, you can see the Aran Islands and all the way across the Galway Bay. O’Brien’s Tower stands near the highest point and has served as a viewing point for visitors for hundreds of years. This stop is a real highlight of the trip and you will never forget the sights you will see today. Lunch will be more casual and will be a simple but delicious Good Food Ireland® local artisan picnic that can be enjoyed on the Cliffs.
Once you have eaten and refreshed yourself, it’s time to make your way back to Dublin where you will stay for two nights at Brooks Hotel, a conveniently located boutique hotel tucked away in a small side street in Dublin’s city centre. The Fair City has much for you to enjoy and we invite you to take the remainder of your day at your leisure. This evening enjoy dinner in Francesca’s Restaurant located in the hotel. You can expect a warm and welcoming atmosphere and a menu sure to delight with Patrick McLarnon, the Executive Chef, having a keen interest in foraging and local food. He has even set up an urban herb garden in the hotel where he grows seasonal herbs and even some fruits so you can definitely look forward to an absolute feast at Francesca’s!
DAY 8 DUBLIN:
Today, you get to visit the Guinness Storehouse, Dublin’s No.1 tourist attraction which will take you all the way up through the Gravity Bar where you can enjoy a glass of Guinness while enjoying a magnificent 360 degrees view of the city. You will see from the sea to the Wicklow Mountains. You will see Phoenix Park and the Aras (our President’s home) and you can even spot planes taking off and landing at the airport. Once the visit is over you are free to explore the many shops and sites on the hotel’s doorstep. Tonight, our Farewell Dinner is in Ely Wine Bar in the heart of Georgian Dublin. Ely is known and loved by the locals for its extensive, well researched and simply fantastic wine list and its elegant food. This is the heart of Dublin and you will live tonight as Dubliners do and we hope you love it.
DAY 9 DUBLIN / USA:
After breakfast, it’s time to bid farewell to Ireland as transfers begin to Dublin airport, where after check-in you will have plenty of time for your last-minute duty-free shopping. Your flight to the US arrives the same day. We hope you have had a tremendously exciting and delicious adventure with us, and we look forward to hopefully seeing you soon again. Safe home!
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Summary Of Hotels
Wicklow – 1 night, 4-Star BrookLodge Hotel
Cork – 2 nights, 5-Star Hayfield Manor Hotel
Killarney – 2 nights, 4-Star International Hotel
Adare – 1 night, 4-Star Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel
Dublin – 2 nights, 4-Star Brooks Hotel
Food & Tasting Experiences
Full Irish breakfast daily, including breakfast on the day of arrival in Mulligan’s Pub in Sandymount
Dinner in The Strawberry Tree Restaurant, BrookLodge
Morning coffee or tea with traditional home-baked scones in Johnstown Castle Estate
Lunch in GIY HQ Café, Waterford
Dinner in Hayfield Manor
Lunch in Ballymaloe House
Smoked Irish Salmon Experience in Ummera Smokehouse
Lunch in The Church Restaurant, Skibbereen
Dinner in The International Hotel
Lunch in The Smugglers Inn, Waterville
Irish Whiskey Tasting Experience in Killarney
Tasting of the famous Cromane Oysters in County Kerry
Dingle Bay Fish ‘n Chips lunch in The Fish Box, Dingle
Dinner in Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel
Special Good Food Ireland® packed picnic at the Cliffs of Moher
Dinner in Francesca’s Restaurant, Brooks Hotel
Dinner in Ely Wine Bar, Dublin
Other Experiences & Inclusions
Enjoy a Small Group Experience with a maximum of 25 guests on this tour
Luxury motorcoach with services of a professional Irish driver/guide
Visit Glendalough in County Wicklow
Visit the 19th Century Johnstown Castle Estate, Museum and Gardens
Visit the House of Waterford Crystal
Guided walking tour of Cobh, County Cork
Guided walking tour of Ballymaloe’s Organic Farm and Gardens
Above are Land Start Dates in Dublin, Ireland. Prices are per person land only and based on two people sharing a room. Single Room Supplement: $1,400. This Small Group Journey is based on a minimum of 12 participants to operate, with a maximum of 25 participants. Good Food Ireland® and Journeys Connect reserve the right to cancel or reschedule any departure with fewer than 12 participants. Please review our full terms and conditions prior to booking.
About Our Tour Operator
Good Food Ireland® is delighted to partner with US-based tour operator, Journeys Connect for our Exclusive Good Food Ireland® Culinary & Cultural Tour – South 2022. Benefitting from over 34 years of experience, Owner and President, Marc Kavanagh shares our mission to not just meet customer expectations, but to exceed them.
Expertise, reliability, flexibility and trust are the foundations on which their services are built. With a dedicated team, they work to understand as much as possible your holiday goals and needs and are committed to delivering excellence.
Journeys Connect is an active member of the United States Tour Operators Association. They also provide competitive group airfares in combination with our land package and have contracts with most of the major US and International air carriers.
Why Book A Good Food Ireland® Tour
Good Food Ireland Approved Every experience is reviewed by Good Food Ireland to ensure each meets our high-quality standards
Because they are the very best adventure partner and we know our food! Our tour prices do not include flights, travel insurance or Dublin accommodation
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