Northern Ireland, Day Tours – Belfast

009656 - W20

Use the fascinating city of Belfast as your base and take one or several day tours out into the countryside to explore the beauty of Northern Ireland. We offer a variety of tours and if you don’t see what you’re looking for just ask, and we can custom design a program for you.

 

 

Highlights
Details
Itinerary
Included
Not Included
Tour Notes
Map
Highlights
  • Belfast's history, stories and hidden secrets spring to life on a private tour with a local guide
  • Drink in the views along the Causeway Coastal Route, voted amongst the #1 Destinations for 2018 by Lonely Planet
  • Legends come to life where giants once battled, at the stunning Giant’s Causeway
  • Explore historic villages, castles, country houses and several Game of Thrones filming locations, like the Dark Hedges
  • Visit Slemish Mountain, where a young St. Patrick tended sheep
  • Learn about Nobel Laureate for Literature, Seamus Heaney, at Homeplace, the fascinating new museum dedicated to his life and works
Details
Group Size: Varies by tour

2018 Departures:
Daily, on request

2018 Pricing:
See prices listed for each tour

Prices are shown in US$, per person, based on the specified number of people per party. Prices are approximate US$ equivalents of the current GBP rate and will vary depending on currency conversion at the time of final payment of your tour, at the time of making your reservation. CA$ rates are also available on request.

Tour Code:
009656 - W20

Itinerary
Open All
Belfast's History and Hidden Secrets (Private Tour)

You will be met by your private guide at your accommodation and set out for a walking tour of Belfast, learning about the city’s fascinating history. Your guide, Dee, is a native of Belfast, someone who personally lived through “the troubles”, and she will share with you her unique perspective of her beloved home. The route includes the Cathedral Quarter and Belfast’s hidden secrets and we’re sure you’ll find the tour is great craic (Irish term for fun, entertainment and enjoyable conversation) and very informative.

Private walking tour with local guide:
From US$85 per person – party of 8
From US$96 per person – party of 6
From US$119 per person – party of 4
From US$188 per person – party of 2

Hidden Gems of Antrim (Private Tour)

You will be met by your private guide and chauffeur-driven vehicle at your accommodation. Your tour today will explore some of the lesser known areas and sites in County Antrim. Head northwest of Belfast, along the north shore of Lough Neagh to the small town of Bellaghy.

The first stop is here, at Homeplace, the birthplace of Northern Ireland’s own Nobel prize winner for literature, Seamus Heaney. Enjoy an emotional insight into the poet’s life and inspirations behind his poetry at this new museum, on the Top 4 Places to Visit in Northern Ireland in 2018. Enjoy a tea break at the cafe in the centre. You’ll tour South Derry and discover the places that gave Heaney his inspiration and visit the poet’s grave.

On through Ballymena to Broughshane, known as the “Garden Village of Ulster”. The village was recently named Village of the Year, Great Britain for 2018 and has previously won Ulster in Bloom, Britain in Bloom and Entente Florale (Europe in Bloom), as well as the All Ireland Tidy Town Award. Well worth a visit and a walk along the main street, where you’ll find some quaint little shops. You will have time for a meal or a pint at the historic Thatch Inn, a quaint pub and historic, thatched building, originally a planter’s house.

Next up is a visit to nearby Mt. Slemish, where Saint Patrick was a shepherd as a boy, a place of real religious significance in Ireland. If the weather is fine and you’re game, you can climb up to the top for a spectacular 360 degree view of the surrounding countryside. Even if you don’t do the climb, the view from the car park out over the countryside below is beautiful.

Continue on to Carnlough on the east coast. Just south of Carnlough you’ll arrive at Glenarm Castle, where you can explore the beautiful, walled garden and perhaps take tea with Viscount Dunluce, if he is in residence. Travel further south along the coastal road through Ballygally, with its impressive castle (now an elegant hotel), turning west at Larne, a major seaport. You’ll pass through Carrickfergus, one of Ireland’s oldest towns and once home to author Jonathan Swift. Make a short stop here at the Carrickfergus Castle, then finally back to Belfast, where your tour ends at your accommodation.

Private tour with personal chauffeur-driven vehicle & guide:
From US$379 plus 66.76 taxes per person – party of 8
From US$415 plus 66.76 taxes per person – party of 6
Party 6 or 8 – Mercedes Benz Sprinter
From US$475 plus 57.22 taxes per person – party of 4
Party of 4 – Mercedes Benz V Class
From US$558 plus 47.68 taxes per person – party of 2
Party of 2 – Mercedes Benz S Class

Coastal Road & Giant's Causeway (Private Tour)

You will be met by your private guide and chauffeur-driven vehicle at your accommodation. Your tour today will take you along the Causeway Coastal Road, voted as a #1 destination to visit in 2018 by Lonely Planet.

Driving along this spectacular stretch of road will take you past Ballygalley and the impressive castle, which is now a hotel; Glenarm, home of Steenson’s Jewellers, maker of jewellery for Game of Thrones; Carnlough, home to the Londonderry Arms Hotel (formerly owned by Sir Winston Churchill) and Cushendall, a very pretty town sitting at the meeting point of three of the Glens of Antrim. Then it’s on to Cushendun, a beautiful, little, conservation village. After your visit here carry on to Bon a Margie Friary in Ballycastle, the ancestral burial grounds of the Macdonnells’. Time for lunch at Thyme and Co.

Next up is the iconic site of Northern Ireland, the Giant’s Causeway. You’ll explore this 8th Wonder of the World in depth, and learn about the geology, history and legends of this very unique and special place. The Giant’s Causeway is Ireland’s only natural UNESCO World Heritage Site.

After this fascinating site you’ll make a stop at Bushmill’s, home to the famous whiskey distillery. A visit here may be able to be incorporated in your program if you are interested. Please ask for possible options. From Bushmill’s, continue on to Dunluce Castle, the ancestral home of the clan MacDonnell, and hear stories of the castle’s history and ghost stories of some of her former residents (all true, to be sure!).

The next stop is the picturesque Dark Hedges, known as The King’s Road, a well known filming location for Game of Thrones.

Return to Belfast through the interior of Country Antrim. You’ll be able to see Slemish in the distance, the mountain where St. Patrick was a shepherd as a young slave boy.  Time permitting you may be able to make a side trip to see it up close and perhaps to stop in the award winning town of Broughshane for a pint before returning to the city. If you wish to incorporate this stop please let us know and we can rework your itinerary to ensure it is included.

Included
  • The services of an experienced, knowledgeable local guide
  • Touring and attractions as outlined in each trip itinerary above, unless specified as optional
  • Professional driver for chaffeur-driven vehiicles, on private tours where applicable
  • Seat in coach on scheduled tours
Not Included
  • Transportation to/from Belfast
  • Accommodation in Belfast
  • Meals unless specified in itinerary
  • Optional Tours and admissions not specified
  • Gratuities to driver and guide
  • Travel Insurance
  • Items of a personal nature
Tour Notes

Private touring: Programs marked as (Private Tours) are totally customized and can be changed in whatever way is needed for you to visit the sites and areas of interest. Maybe you had ancestors that came from Northern Ireland and want to visit specific villages, towns, farms and grave sites. Or you’re a whiskey fan or a golf nut and want to incorporate these interests into your tour. Just let us know what you want to see and what your interests are and we can design a specialized program, customized just for you.

Scheduled tours: Programs not marked as (Private Tours) are scheduled tours that offer you a seat in coach on a pre-set itinerary. They operate pretty much every day and offer the most economical way to see major sites.

No matter if you do a Private Tour or a Scheduled Tour we can arrange accommodation for you in Belfast for the number of nights you want to stay, and book you on the day tours of your choice, to explore the countryside. This gives you the chance to visit the fascinating city of Belfast, unpack once and settle in to your room and return to it each night, providing a more relaxed stay.

Are you a Game of Thrones fan? Approximately 80% of Game of Thrones has been filmed in Northern Ireland, so it’s a fantastic place for fans to visit.  We can ensure you visit specific filming locations, the jewellery store where the series’ jewellery was crafted and some of the doors featured in the various seasons. It’s even possible to do a trip to Castle Ward and Demesne, location of the series’ famous Winterfell. Here you can take part in the Winterfell Game of Thrones Experience, including guides who were extras in the show, wear period costumes actually used in the filming and giving archery a try. Just be forewarned, beheading is the standard punishment for a bad performance on the archery range (although it’s been known for clemency to be granted to visitors)!

 

Disclaimer: We do our utmost to ensure that information posted on our website is correct at the time of publication, however trip details are subject to change without notice by the suppliers and operators involved. We update the information as soon as possible when changes are advised to us, however, we cannot assume responsibility for such changes made by the suppliers and operators.

Map