PRE-RACE OPTIONAL TOUR | OCTOBER 21 - 24
Monday October 21: Arrive in Belfast and make your own way to your hotel. This evening enjoy a welcome reception and dinner at your hotel. (dinner included)
Tuesday October 22: This morning following breakfast we will travel to the Antrim Coast. Upon arrival we will visit Giant's Causeway, a stunning UNESCO World Heritage site that formed 60 million years ago after a volcanic eruption. However, as the Irish legend goes, Ireland’s favorite giant Finn McCool created the Giants Causeway by building stepping stones to Scotland to challenge the Scottish giant Benandonner! In the Visitor Center, there are various interactive exhibits and the self guided visit will culminate with a spectacular two minutes audio-visual projection of a volcanic eruption flowing over the walls and onto the floor.
Next, we will visit Carrick-a-Rede rope-bridge. Carrick-a-Rede, on the Antrim Coast, is a spectacular rope bridge, which spans a chasm, 30 meters deep and 20 meters wide. Originally a seasonal working bridge for fishermen, it connects a small island to the mainland.Its construction once consisted of a single rope handrail and widely spaced slats, which the fishermen would cross to bring ashore salmon caught off the island. The single handrail was subsequently replaced by today’s two-handed railed bridge. Visitors bold enough to cross to the rocky island are rewarded with fantastic views. Underneath the bridge are large caves, which often served as a safe haven for fishing trawlers escaping from winter storms.
After, we will visit Dark Hedges, a long, tree-lined avenue of hauntingly beautiful trees, made famous by the television series Game of Thrones.
Once we return to Belfast the rest of the afternoon of the day and evening are free to enjoy. (breakfast included)
Wednesday October 23: Following breakfast we will set off to explore Belfast beginning with a Black Cab tour. This is a political history tour of West Belfast's Murals, telling the story of the Troubles. The award winning tour has been broadcast worldwide. Taking in sights at Falls Road, Shankill Road, Peaceline Wall, Crumlin Road Gaol, and the Murals. Next, we will visit Crumlin Road Gaol. Grasp the wonderful opportunity to experience the history inside the former prison, Crumlin Road Gaol, which dates back to 1845. Closed in 1996, it also played a significant role during the troubles in Belfast. Designed by Charles Lanyon at a cost of £60,000, it was one of the most advanced prisons of its day and was built within a five sided wall on ten acres. It was the first prison in Ireland to be built according to the “separate system”, intended to separate prisoners from each other with no communication between them. The prison was designed to hold between 500- 550 prisoners but during the civil unrest in Northern Ireland especially during 1970s as many as 900 prisoners were held here. This evening enjoy dinner and entertainment with a Belfast Story Show. (breakfast, dinner and show included)
Thursday October 24: After breakfast and check-out, we will visit the Titanic Belfast. Located in the heart of Belfast, the Titanic Belfast recreates the story of the world’s most famous ship in an iconic, six floor building right beside the historic site of the original ship’s construction. Opened in April 2012 to coincide with the centenary of its launch, the self-guided journey begins on entering the building's giant atrium, where the visitor is surrounded by the four ‘ship’s hull’ shaped wings which house the Titanic Experience. As you journey through the nine large galleries of the interactive exhibition, you will uncover the true story of the Titanic, from her conception in Belfast in the early 1900's, through her construction and launch, to her famous maiden voyage and subsequent place in history. Following we will make our way to Dublin for your four-night race package.
POST-RACE OPTIONAL TOUR | OCTOBER 28 - 31
GALWAY & ENNIS
Monday, October 28: Today we start the journey cross country! Morning coach departure for a chauffeured ride through the Irish countryside to Galway. We will stop along the way to visit the ruins of Clonmacnoise, a monastic site overlooking the Shannon River. Lunch will be on your own. We will arrive in Galway with time to explore and perhaps do some shopping! A welcome dinner will be at the hotel tonight. (breakfast and dinner included)
Tuesday, October 29: In the morning we will depart for a full day loop of the Connamara region, where little has changed since the beginning of time and Gaelic is still the spoken language in the small villages. In the afternoon you will enjoy a visit to the famous Kylemore Abbey. We will return to our hotel in Galway and this evening is free to dine at one of the many local restaurants and pubs.(breakfast included)
Wednesday, October 30: The group will depart in the morning for County Clare, traveling through the Burren Region on your way to the Cliffs of Moher. After your visit to the Cliffs of Moher we continue on to the Old Ground Hotel in Ennis. The grand finale is the Medieval Banquet at the Bunratty Castle! (breakfast and dinner included)
Thursday, October 31: Today concludes the extension to Galway and Ennis. There will be one morning transfer provided from Shannon Airport (time to be determined once all passenger flight information has been received). Please be sure to book your return flight out of Shannon Airport (SNN) and not Dublin! We will NOT be returning to Dublin. (breakfast included)