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Dive DEEP Into Legends: 2023‘s Top Historical Tours in Ireland

Best Historical Tours in Ireland

Thinking of diving deep into Ireland's historical treasures? I've been there, and trust me, it's a journey you won't forget!

Ireland, a land of myths, legends, and deep-rooted history, had me spellbound. From the haunting tales in the backstreets of Belfast to the mesmerising beauty of the UNESCO–listed Giant’s Causeway, every bit was surreal. Imagine standing atop those ancient, hexagonal stone columns, feeling like a character out of folklore!

One morning, I found myself wandering through Glendalough's monastic ruins. The silence was poignant, interrupted only by the whispers of stories long forgotten. Oh, and Kilkenny? A medieval wonderland! Walking its streets felt like time-travelling to a bygone era.

But what really tugged at my heartstrings was that unexpected stop in Wicklow. Seeing those border collies herding sheep with such finesse? Mind-blowing! And a hearty chat with the local shepherd was the cherry on top.

Then there's the darker side of Dublin, a walking tour that delved deep into its eerie past. Gruesome tales of murder, intrigue, and even cannibalism kept me on my toes.

But the question remains: with so many awe-inspiring historical tours dotting Ireland, where will your adventure begin?

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💁‍♀️ In a Hurry? My Top Picks for Best Historical Tours in Ireland

Best Historical Tours in Ireland

What This Tour is Best For
Northern Ireland Highlights Day Trip from DublinExploring iconic sites like Belfast, Giant’s Causeway, and Dunluce Castle
Kilkenny, Wicklow Mountains, Glendalough Day TripMedieval Irish architecture and folklore in Kilkenny and Glendalough
Blarney Castle Day Tour from DublinVisiting Blarney Castle and the Rock of Cashel
Dark Dublin Guided Walking TourDiscovering Dublin’s gruesome history of murder, torture, and dark legends
Titanic Belfast Experience Day Trip from DublinLearning about the Titanic and visiting the Giant’s Causeway and Dunluce Castle
See also
Best Irish Whiskey Tours in Ireland

Journeying Through Time: My Personal Dive into Ireland's Best Historical Tours.

Connemara Day Trip from Galway: Cong and the Kylemore Abbey

⭐️ Rating: 4.8/5 (683 Reviews) | 📍 Location: Galway, Ireland | 👉 Check Availability

Connemara Day Trip from Galway Cong and the Kylemore Abbey
Credit: Tour Provider

An Enchanting Escape

Delve into Ireland's rugged charm with this full-day journey through Connemara, embracing natural splendours and historic gems. Experience the stillness of Lough Carrib and Loch NaFooey, walk the elegant paths of Kylemore Abbey's walled gardens, and step back in time in Cong village. Here's why this is an experience you can't miss!

The Adventure I'll Never Forget

I'll admit, the beauty of Connemara took my breath away. As our luxury coach meandered through the scenic landscapes towards Headford, the serene ambience of Ross Errilly Friary set the tone for the day. But what truly made my heart skip a beat was the quaintness of Cong village, where the classic film ‘The Quiet Man' was set. Can you imagine wandering through the same spots that once echoed with the footsteps of John Wayne? And just when I thought it couldn't get any better, there was Kylemore Abbey. This neo-gothic masterpiece, with tales of romance and tragedy, was mesmerising. Pausing by the walled gardens, I could almost hear the whispers of stories long gone by. The sumptuous home cooking by the Benedictine Nuns was the cherry on top. Truly, every corner of this trip felt like stepping into a storybook.

Don't Wait, Dive In!

It's not just a day trip; it's an enchanting voyage into Ireland's heart. Why only hear about it when you can live it?

Need-to-Know Facts

PriceFrom €35.00
Duration8 hours
LanguageOffered in English
Start Time10:00 AM
Meeting PointKinlay Hostel, Galway
IncludedDriver/Guide, AC Vehicle, Meals
Additional FeeKylemore Abbey & Walled Garden

Exclusive Insights from My Personal Journey

  • Opt for a morning visit to Kylemore Abbey; the golden hues make it look ethereal.
  • Don't forget your camera; the vistas of Lough Carrib are a photographer's dream.
  • Sample the Benedictine Nuns' pastries at the Abbey. Heavenly!

Guest Review: “The Connemara tour was a magical experience. Every moment, from the serene landscapes to the historic monuments, felt like stepping into a fairy tale. Highly recommended!” – Sarah, United Kingdom.

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Cliffs of Moher and Burren Day Trip, Including Dunguaire Castle, Aillwee Cave, and Doolin from Galway

⭐️ Rating: 4.8/5 (1,354 Reviews) | 📍 Location: Galway, Ireland | 👉 Check Availability

Cliffs of Moher and Burren Day Trip, Including Dunguaire Castle, Aillwee Cave, and Doolin from Galway
Credit: Tour Provider

A Breathtaking Irish Experience

Discover the rugged charm of Ireland with a day trip that sweeps you through the scenic Burren region and indulge in the breathtaking sights of the Cliffs of Moher. Stop by the historic Dunguaire Castle, marvel at the mysteries of Aillwee Cave, and enjoy the quaint town of Doolin, all the while journeying with the company of a knowledgeable local guide.

My Day Amidst Ireland's Natural Wonders

Oh, the joy of standing atop the mighty Cliffs of Moher, with the coastal wind tousling my hair and the majestic Atlantic waves crashing below! It was an exhilarating experience. Strolling through the Burren's unique moon-like landscape, I was taken aback by its haunting beauty. The 16th-century Dunguaire Castle was a picturesque sight, and although closed for entry, provided a great photo opportunity. The Aillwee Cave? An underground wonder! To wrap it up, a cosy stopover at Doolin, where I felt the authentic vibe of a small Irish town. The guide’s tales and insights gave a deeper understanding of each spot, making the journey more enriching. Ever wanted to feel on top of the world and be embraced by history at the same time? This is the trip for you!

A World Awaits Your Exploration

Why wait when an enchanting journey beckons? Embrace the captivating beauty of Galway and its treasures. Dive deep into Ireland's heart, and you'll leave with memories that last a lifetime.

Essential Tour Details

PriceFrom €50.00
Duration8 hours
LanguageOffered in: English
Meeting PointLally Tours Pick Up Point, 10 Forster St, Galway
Start Time09:30 AM
End PointHYDE Hotel Forster St, Galway
InclusionsLocal guide, Air-conditioned vehicle, Entrance to Aillwee Cave

Exclusive Insights from My Day

  • While at the Cliffs of Moher, venture a bit further along the trail for even more stunning views.
  • Don't forget to pack a light jacket; the coastal breeze can be a tad chilly.
  • Grab a bite in Doolin; they serve some of the finest Irish delicacies.
  • Keep your camera ready; the landscapes are a photographer's dream.

Guest's Voice: “I've been on numerous tours, but this one stands out. The blend of nature, history, and culture is just perfect. Every stop has its charm, but the Cliffs are an experience of a lifetime!” – Patrick, Australia.

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Cliffs of Moher Day Trip from Galway

⭐️ Rating: 4.9/5 (1,232 Reviews) | 📍 Location: Galway, Ireland | 👉 Check Availability

Cliffs of Moher Day Trip from Galway
Credit: Tour Provider

A Unique Irish Gem Awaits

Marvel at Ireland's most astounding natural spectacle on this unforgettable day trip from Galway. Journey through charming fishing villages, admire ancient castles and get lost in the lunar-like landscape of the Burren. But the highlight? Spend two captivating hours at the UNESCO-listed Cliffs of Moher.

My Remarkable Adventure at the Cliffs

I’ll admit, initially, I underestimated the grandeur of the Cliffs of Moher. The drive from Galway is an experience in itself. Meandering through the idyllic fishing village of Kinvara, I found myself gazing at the historic Dunguaire Castle, imagining the tales it could tell. The Burren's peculiar limestone surface captured my fascination as our coach glided through. It felt surreal, almost like landing on another planet. However, nothing could have prepared me for the first sight of the Cliffs. The wind in my hair, the gentle hum of the waves below, and the sheer magnitude of nature's creation – it's an image seared into my memory. Remember the scene from “The Princess Bride”? Yes, it's that breathtaking! I even caught myself daydreaming about Harry Potter's adventures, knowing part of the film was shot here. If you ever find yourself on this tour, do take a moment just to sit and soak it all in. Ever had a moment that feels like time has paused? That's what it felt like.

You're Just One Click Away!

Every moment of this tour is a testament to Ireland’s ethereal beauty. If breathtaking landscapes and historic wonders tickle your fancy, this is the adventure you've been searching for. Dive in and let Ireland's magic wrap around you.

Quick Tour Facts

PriceFrom €50.00
Duration8 hours 15 minutes
LanguageOffered in English
Meeting PointKinlay Hostel Galway
Start Time10:00 AM

Exclusive Insights from My Personal Journey

  • Best Photo Spot: Just before the main viewing platform, there’s a slightly elevated area. Perfect for those Instagram-worthy shots!
  • Local Delight: If you get a chance, try the seafood in Doolin. Fresh and incredibly delicious.
  • Wear Comfy Shoes: The trails at the Cliffs can be a bit uneven, so comfy shoes are a must.
  • History Buffs: Listen closely to the guide when near Dunguaire Castle. The tales are enchanting.

A Glimpse from Another Traveller: “The Cliffs are an experience I'll never forget. From the picturesque journey to the jaw-dropping views, it was a day of pure magic.” – Sophie from the UK.

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Killarney National Park Tour

⭐️ Rating: 5.0/5 (233 Reviews) | 📍 Location: Killarney, Ireland | 👉 Check Availability

Killarney National Park Tour
Credit: Tour Provider

A Delightful Ride into Nature's Heart

Unearth the tranquil beauty of Ireland's oldest national park on a private horse and carriage tour. Navigating routes inaccessible to cars, you'll marvel at lakes, mountains, and even a historical 15th-century castle. It's Killarney National Park like you've never experienced before!

A Whirlwind of Natural Wonders and History

Last month, I found myself atop a comfortable carriage, with the rhythmic clip-clop of the horse setting the pace for my adventure. The breeze carried whispers of ancient tales as we journeyed through Killarney National Park. Before I knew it, Ross Castle loomed ahead! Should I explore the castle grounds, or should I opt for the lakes route? The latter won me over. Perched lakeside, with the castle in the backdrop, I snapped what might be my best photo yet. This tour didn't just show me the park; it made me feel its magic. Can you imagine a place so serene that time feels paused? That's Killarney for you.

If you've been yearning for an experience that brings together nature, history, and a touch of the unique, this horse and carriage tour is it. It's like stepping into a storybook. What wonders of Killarney are you waiting to discover?

Quick Tour Facts

PriceFrom €38.99 (Varies by group size)
Duration1 hour
IncludesPrivate transport, Commentary, Professional Guide

Exclusive Insights from My Personal Journey

  • Location Tip: Meet at the Deenagh Lodge, it's right across from the Cathedral with free parking. Perfect for starting the tour with ease.
  • Choice Matters: When you reach Ross Castle, remember you can choose between the direct route or the picturesque lakes route.
  • Carriage Comfort: Even if you're not a regular equestrian, the carriage is comfy and gives the tour a special charm.

Guest Review: “I never thought I'd see Killarney in such a breathtaking way. The horse and carriage added a touch of magic. Definitely a highlight of my Ireland trip!” – Sarah, UK.

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Ring Of Kerry Tour

⭐️ Rating: 5.0/5 (199 Reviews) | 📍 Location: Killarney, Ireland | 👉 Check Availability

Ring Of Kerry Tour
Credit: Tour Provider

A Day in Emerald Beauty

Experience the iconic Ring of Kerry in all its glory on a full-day tour from Killarney. Travel comfortably in a minibus, ensuring closer views of the breathtaking landscapes, while soaking in the charm of picturesque villages like Waterville. Immerse yourself in the beauty of the Irish countryside, get to know local tales, and snap some frame-worthy shots without the worry of driving.

My Day on the Ring

Honestly, the Ring of Kerry was a revelation. Travelling in that cosy minibus was a joy, especially knowing I wouldn’t be the one navigating the serpentine roads. Every bend and turn opened up views that took my breath away. We stopped at Waterville Beach, a gem hidden between the Atlantic and Lough Currane. The salty breeze, and the locals taking their promenade, it was like stepping into a postcard. Our group was a perfect size too, just 15 of us, sharing this experience. And can I talk about the Kerry Bog Village Museum? A peek into Ireland’s rich history, right in the heart of nature! Would you believe the entry to Waterville Beach was absolutely free?

Dive Right In!

The Irish countryside is not just a destination; it's an experience waiting to be lived. Grab your chance and dive deep into the heart of Ireland. Time will fly but the memories, oh, they'll last a lifetime!

Key Details at a Glance:

PriceFrom €39.00
Duration7 hours
Language OfferedEnglish
Tour InclusionsAir-conditioned vehicle
Start Time09:00 AM
Max Group Size29 travelers
Cancellation PolicyUp to 24 hours in advance

Exclusive Insights from My Personal Journey:

  • Local Tip: After Waterville, take a few minutes to chat with the locals. Their stories are as rich as the land.
  • Picture Perfect: Always have your camera ready. Every corner has a surprise view waiting.
  • Snack Alert: Pack some local Irish snacks for the ride. There's something magical about munching on them amidst such beauty.

A Guest's Glimpse: “Fantastic time on the Ring! Kevin’s tales added so much flavour to an already mesmerising journey. The landscape is something right out of a dream. Highly recommended!” – Michael_F, United Kingdom.

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Shore Excursion From Cork: Including Blarney Castle and Kinsale

⭐️ Rating: 4.8/5 (246 Reviews) | 📍 Location: Cobh, Ireland | 👉 Check Availability

Shore Excursion From Cork Including Blarney Castle and Kinsale
Credit: Tour Provider

A Day to Remember

Journey through Cork’s picturesque countryside, explore the legendary Blarney Castle, experience the charm of Kinsale and relive the Titanic's departure at Cobh – all in one enriching shore excursion!

My Unforgettable Experience

I’ll admit, standing atop Blarney Castle and looking down at the panoramic views of Cork's emerald landscapes was genuinely surreal. The ancient castle had its stories, and after leaning back to kiss the famous Blarney Stone, I felt like a piece of Irish lore was now a part of me. My afternoon stroll in Kinsale was just as dreamy. The vibrant market stalls, the scent of fresh seafood, and the symphony of Irish accents around – it was like living inside a postcard. And let's not even talk about Cobh, standing there, and imagining the Titanic making its final departure was both chilling and fascinating. The whole day was seamlessly orchestrated from the moment the coach left Cork Harbour. Every destination was a new revelation, and by the end of it, I genuinely felt like I’d experienced the essence of County Cork.

Don't Hesitate!

This excursion offers a taste of Ireland you won't find elsewhere. Dive into the heart of Cork, embrace its history, and be charmed by its tales. Waiting only means missing out on creating memories for a lifetime.

Quick Glance: Tour Details

Duration8 hours
Languages OfferedEnglish
PickupFrom Cruise Ship Terminal

Exclusive Insights from My Personal Journey

  • Arrive a bit early and enjoy the serenity of Cork Harbour before the tour begins.
  • Don’t forget to wear comfortable shoes for the walk-in Kinsale and Blarney Castle.
  • If you can, grab a quick bite in Kinsale – their seafood is exceptional!

A Word from a Fellow Traveller: “This excursion was the highlight of my Ireland trip. Blarney Castle was just as magical as I’d imagined, and Kinsale is an absolute charm!” – Amelia, Australia.

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Ring of Kerry Day Tour from Cork: Including Killarney National Park

⭐️ Rating: 4.9/5 (352 Reviews) | 📍 Location: Cork, Ireland | 👉 Check Availability

Ring of Kerry Day Tour from Cork Including Killarney National Park
Credit: Tour Provider

Capturing Kerry’s Magic in A Day

Venture into the heart of the Ring of Kerry, where lush landscapes fuse with timeless traditions. From the vibrant houses of Sneem Village to the breathtaking views of Killarney National Park, this full-day tour from Cork promises an adventure through Ireland's mesmerising southern realms.

A Day to Remember

I’ll admit, the Ring of Kerry always seemed like a dream to me. The day began in Cork's spirited streets, leading us towards the breathtaking heights of the Cork and Kerry Mountains. Killarney, the most beautiful town I've ever set foot in, was our first stop. Surrounded by mountain peaks and gleaming lakes, every nook and corner echoed stories of ancient Ireland. Sneem Village, with its rainbow of houses and old-world charm, felt like stepping into a storybook. But the highlight? Dingle Bay. The coastal views made my heart race. And Killarney National Park? Simply out of this world. My guide was a treasure trove of folklore and history, making the entire journey feel intimate and personal. Who knew a day could be filled with so much magic?

Don’t Just Dream, Dive In!

The Ring of Kerry awaits, vibrant and brimming with wonders. Dive into an adventure that’ll etch memories on your soul and stories you’ll be eager to share.

Essential Tour Details

PriceFrom €49.00
Duration11 hours
LanguageOffered in: English
InclusionsTaxes, Driver/guide, Live commentary
ExclusionsFood and drinks, Gratuities, Hotel pickup and drop-off
Meeting PointPaddywagon Tours Cork 9 Bridge St, Centre, Cork, T23 KW89, Ireland
Start Time08:30 AM
End PointReturns to the original departure point

Exclusive Insights from My Personal Journey

  • Make sure you wear comfortable shoes; the scenery begs to be explored!
  • Sneem Village is a photographer’s paradise, ensure your camera is charged.
  • While the tour offers rich insights, chatting with locals adds an extra layer of authenticity.
  • Don’t forget a light raincoat; after all, this is Ireland!

Guest's Voice: “This tour was the highlight of my Ireland trip! The sights, the history, and the sheer beauty of the place took my breath away. Will definitely recommend!” – Siobhan, Scotland.

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Aran Islands and Cliffs of Moher Cruise from Galway

⭐️ Rating: 4.8/5 (836 Reviews) | 📍 Location: Galway, Ireland | 👉 Check Availability

Aran Islands and Cliffs of Moher Cruise from Galway
Credit: Tour Provider

A Glimpse of Natural Beauty

Embark on a memorable journey to the mesmerising Aran Islands and the iconic Cliffs of Moher. This cruise gives you an intimate encounter with nature’s masterpieces, ancient castles, and the echoing history of the villages. Revel in awe-inspiring views, only accessible by boat, and soak in the serene beauty of one of Ireland’s most pristine beaches.

My Unforgettable Journey

I'll confess, the moment the cruise set sail, I was absolutely captivated. The beauty of the Aran Islands isn't just about its landscapes, but the tales they tell. As our guide shared snippets of history, I felt a deep connection to the land. And oh, the Cliffs of Moher! Standing atop, with the wind playing with my hair, the breathtaking panorama was surreal. The eco-sensitive visitor centre was a delightful bonus and those views? Unparalleled! And Inisheer? An unexpected gem with its lovely beaches, pubs, and historic remnants. Trust me, exploring the islands on a bike? Pure bliss. Curious how the world looks from the Cliffs' edge?

Dive into the Experience!

Imagine yourself riding a bike across scenic landscapes, the wind carrying tales from ancient times. Feel the rush? The Aran Islands and Cliffs of Moher await. Dive in and let the magic envelop you.

Essential Tour Details

PriceFrom €70.00
Duration10 hours 30 minutes
LanguagesOffered in: English
Meeting PointKinlay Hostel Galway, Eyre Square, Galway

Exclusive Insights from My Personal Journey

  • Consider renting a bicycle on Inisheer for a unique exploration.
  • Be ready with your camera at the Cliffs for some mesmerising shots.
  • Visit the eco-sensitive visitor centre; it’s enlightening!
  • Engage with locals, they've fascinating stories to share.

Review from a Guest: “The views from the Cliffs are like nothing I've ever seen! A magical experience that I'll cherish forever.” – Emma, UK.

Read More Reviews

See also
Best Pub Tours in Ireland

My Final Thoughts on Best Historical Tours in Ireland

In my travels across the verdant landscapes of Ireland, I've found these historical tours to be simply spellbinding. Glendalough's serene lakes, Kilkenny's ancient whispers, and the mystique of the Giant’s Causeway have all left an indelible mark on my soul. Each tour offers a unique blend of lore, legends, and tangible history that captures the very essence of Ireland. Walking these paths, I've come to appreciate the stories that shaped this nation, and I'm ever eager to share this sense of wonder. Here's hoping you'll find the same magic and connection in these storied places.

FAQs about Best Historical Tours in Ireland

What personal experiences did I find most captivating in the Northern Ireland Highlights Day Trip?

I was truly enchanted by the mural-strewn streets of Belfast, the UNESCO–listed Giant’s Causeway, and the iconic Dunluce Castle, known for its “Game of Thrones” connection.

How did the Kilkenny and Glendalough tour make me feel?

Kilkenny’s medieval charm combined with the breathtaking views of Glendalough transported me to a time of legends and rich history, leaving me in awe.

Why do I think the Blarney Castle Day Tour is a must-visit?

Kissing the Blarney Stone and exploring the historic Rock of Cashel provided a blend of tradition and history that deeply resonated with me.

How did the half-day tour of the Glendalough & Wicklow Mountains captivate my senses?

The picturesque journey showcasing Wicklow National Park's beauty, paired with Glendalough's tranquillity, gave me a refreshing escape.

How would I describe my experience with the Dark Dublin Guided Walking Tour?

Delving into Dublin’s dark tales of murder, torture, and cannibalism, it was an enthralling journey that shed light on the city's hidden layers.

Did the Wicklow Mountains and Kilkenny Day Tour live up to my expectations?

Absolutely! The idyllic countryside of Wicklow National Park and the historic ambience of Kilkenny made it an unforgettable experience.

What is the duration of most of these historical tours in Ireland?

From my journey, tours ranged from half-day excursions, such as the 5-hour Glendalough trip, to full-day adventures lasting around 10 to 13 hours, ensuring a comprehensive experience.

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📣 Local Insider Tips: Plan Your Dream Trip to Dublin with Our Guide!

👉 What's the Best Way to Get Around Dublin and Ireland?

By Car – We're a big fan of renting a car and driving ourselves while touring the island. It allows us to see attractions at our own pace outside the city centre too. We find the best rental deals through Discover Cars. (Read more)

👉 Where Can I Book a Place to Stay in Dublin?

Maybe – For hotels, we recommend to compare places. If you are looking for a vacation rental, VRBO is a top choice. We advise reading reviews carefully before booking. (Read more)

👉 Which Site Finds the Cheapest Dublin Flights?

Check out Expedia first when booking airfare. Setting up price alerts is an easy way to grab deals when fares drop. (Read more)

👉 What's the Best Way to Get from the Airport to Dublin City Centre?

By Bus – The Dublin Express Bus is an affordable and convenient option. Taxis are readily available as well. (Read more)

Private Transfer – Travel to and from Dublin Airport in style and comfort with a private luxury van or minibus transfer. Skip the taxi queues and enjoy a personalized meet-and-greet service, ensuring a smooth start or end to your Dublin adventure! (Read More)

👉 Is There a City Pass to Access Multiple Dublin Attractions?

Absolutely – The Go City All-Inclusive Pass is your ticket to over 40 top attractions in Dublin. It includes spots like the Guinness Storehouse, Dublin hop-on hop-off bus tours, Christchurch Cathedral, and many more. (Read more)

👉 What Are Some Recommended Attractions in And near Dublin?

Dublin, located along Ireland's east coast, offers several nearby attractions worth exploring. The Giants Causeway, Cliffs of Moher, Galway, and Belfast are all accessible by a short drive or flight. (Read More)

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