If you’re ready to discover marvelous scenery, fascinating history, friendly people, and the warmest of welcomes, CIE Tours is inviting you to Ireland. Nobody can beat CIE Tours’ choice of vacations in Ireland, and 2022 is a special one at CIE Tours – it’s the 90th anniversary of the premier tour operator’s founding.
To commemorate it, we’ve compiled a list of a dozen don’t-miss experiences for 2022, and a suggestion of which itinerary to see it on. All of CIE Tours’ Irish itineraries are available as guided tours, as self-drive adventures, or with the affordable luxury of a personal driver/guide.
- Horse-lovers will thrill at the sight of some of the world’s finest thoroughbreds at the Irish National Stud, right in the heart of Ireland’s racing industry in Kildare. Learn about Ireland’s racing heritage, and marvel at these magnificent creatures. Then stroll the grounds to see the beautiful Japanese-style gardens. Recommended tour: Irish Heritage
Raise a glass at the oldest bar in Europe – Sean’s Bar in Athlone. Thirsty patrons have been slaking their thirst here since around 900 AD, and it’s in the Guinness Book of Records. With its old fireplaces and cedar sawdust on the floors, it’s an atmospheric gem. Recommended tour: Irish Pub Tour
- Visit a high-tech, award-winning museum to hear tales of the Irish around the world. EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum tells the stories of the Irish diaspora – how and why they left, and their new lives abroad. The history is fascinating, whether you’re a descendent of one of those emigrants or not, and these stories are brought to life in amazing digital displays. Recommended tour: Irish Spirit
- Learn a slice of local history from a guide who lived it – the Arigna Mining Experience offers the stories of the lives and struggles of those who worked the coal tunnels. Your guide will be one of those who did – former miners give the tours. Recommended tour: Irish Spirit
- Walk in the footsteps of centuries of learned monks and marvel at the romantic ruins left behind. Glendalough was founded by St Brendan in the sixth century, and its decorated crosses, stone churches, and round tower are a picturesque delight. Recommended tour: Irish Adventure
- Feel the mist on your face and the wind in your hair as you sip a creamy Irish coffee on top of Europe’s highest sea cliffs. The ocean and landscape you’ll see from Slieve League in Donegal will enthrall you – and you won’t be alone in enjoying the view, with thousands of birds attracted to the cliffs, and seals, dolphins, and basking sharks down below. Recommended tour: Irish Explorer
- Experience Irish history in a surprisingly innovative way at the world’s first cemetery museum. Glasnevin National Cemetery is the final resting place for 1.5 million souls, including many national heroes – the patriots and politicians who founded Ireland. Recommended tour: Irish Heritage
- Hear traditional music in a 300-year-old pub when you visit the Marine Bar in Dungarvan. It’s a legendary spot for music lovers – owned by local musician Christy O’Neill, it was a beloved haunt of Liam Clancy of the world-renowned Clancy Brothers. He used to live nearby and often came in to sing. It’s a CIE Tours Exclusive. Recommended Tour: Irish Gold
- Dip into the Irish craft beer scene as you taste a flight of local brews at the
Walled City Brewery, a family-owned establishment located in a former army barracks in the historic heart of Derry. It’s a CIE Tours exclusive venue. Recommended tour: Mystical Ireland
- Sit in the old-style Muckross Schoolhouse and take a fun Irish language lesson the way your grandmother might have! You can practice your cúpla focal (few words) afterward when your group enjoys a private dinner with traditional entertainment. It’s a CIE Tours exclusive. Recommended tour: Best of Ireland South
- Pull up a chair by the fire in an old-style pub, and settle in for a storytelling session. O’Connor’s Famous Pub in Galway’s seaside suburb of Salthill might even seem a little familiar – it was a filming location for Ed Sheeran’s Galway Girl video. (The fiddle used in the video is still behind the bar!) The experience is a CIE Tours exclusive. Recommended tour: Irish Pub Tour
- Discover the Victorian charm of Blakes of the Hollow Pub in a CIE Tours exclusive. Famed author John McGahern once called it “one of the happiest and most beautiful bars” in all of Ireland. And check out the handcrafted “Game of Thrones” door, carved from a fallen tree of the Dark Hedges. Recommended tour: Irish Explorer
All guided tours come with the All-In Inclusive Advantage, which means all the attractions and most of the meals are included in the price. You won’t worry about hidden extras, and your tour guide can focus on showing you the wonders of your destination.