Enjoy a stay in Dublin and discover the cultural and natural highlights of Ireland's dynamic capital and surrounding countryside.

Starting at: $4,590 Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Ha'Penny Bridge, Dublin  Grafton Street, Dublin. Credit: Courtesy Ireland Tourism Bureau  St. Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin  Trinity Library, Dublin. Credit: Courtesy Ireland Tourism Bureau  Trinity College Library, Dublin  Typical scene of musicians in a pub. Credit: Courtesy Ireland Tourism Bureau  Scenic Howth harbor just outside Dublin  Newgrange Neolithic era monument, County Meath  Russborough House in County Wicklow  The site of Glendalough  Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin  Savor Irish favorites   Sample Irish whiskey

Dublin

A One-Week Stay in Ireland

9 days from $4,590

Enjoy a stay in Dublin and discover the cultural and natural highlights of Ireland's dynamic capital and surrounding countryside.

or Call 855-330-1542

Overview

Ireland is known as the land of “céad míle fáilte” or “a hundred thousand welcomes.” Ireland sweeps you off your feet by charming you with the words of great Irish writers, engaging you with its fascinating medieval history, and wooing you with lively Irish music and dancing. Pursue the essence of Ireland during an exciting week in Dublin, an old city with a youthful heart, and two neighboring counties. Explore the ancient history and new traditions, delve into events that shaped the modern country, and visit monuments that tell the story of a flourishing prehistoric civilization. Join us to experience the magical heritage of Ireland, the Emerald Isle.

Highlights Include

  • Dublin: Stroll through the quads of world-renowned Trinity College and see the breathtaking library and Book of Kells. Learn about 18th-century Dublin and the people who lived here as you admire the Georgian architecture during a walking tour. And at Kilmainham Gaol, hear about the Easter Rising, the pivotal insurrection of 1916.
  • History and Archaeology: View collection highlights of Dublin’s National Museum of History and Archaeology. Take an excursion to the Boyne Valley, Ireland’s ancient capital and a World Heritage site, with its Neolithic monuments of Newgrange, Knowth, and Dowth. Plus, visit the early medieval monastery of Glendalough.
  • Great Homes and Gardens: Discover the art and architecture of Russborough House, one of Ireland’s fi nest great houses with its immense landscape and garden maze. Enjoy a walking tour of the many gardens of Powerscourt Estate, renowned as one of Ireland’s top gardens.
  • Cuisine: Meet food artisans and learn about the country’s newest culinary delights and trends, plus enjoy a tour and tasting at a boutique whiskey distillery.

Itinerary

Day 1 — Depart the U.S.

Travelers depart the U.S. on an overnight trans-Atlantic flight to Dublin, Ireland.

Day 2 — Dublin

Upon arrival at Dublin International Airport, transfer to the upscale Davenport Hotel located in Dublin’s city center. Your Smithsonian Journeys Travel Director will be on hand to welcome travelers and assist with check-in. Each guest will receive a customized Welcome Kit containing general information about Dublin, as well as a map of the city and its environs. Your Travel Director will be available this afternoon and throughout the program for suggestions regarding points of interest, restaurants, and independent activities.

Excursion: Later, attend a short orientation walk of the hotel’s neighborhood. This evening, join your Smithsonian Journeys Expert for a short presentation followed by a welcome reception and dinner at the hotel. (R,D)

Day 3 — Dublin

A full Irish buffet breakfast is served at the hotel each morning during your stay. Begin the day with a presentation by your Smithsonian Journeys Expert.

Excursion: Set out with an expert leading the way, to visit a selection of independently owned food venues with a tasting at each one. The tastings reflect the current Dublin food scene. You’ll also learn about the culture and history of this lively and charming city.

Excursion: After a break for lunch, continue to Trinity College, Ireland’s oldest university known for its splendid architecture and remarkable history. A student-guide will point out historic highpoints on a walking tour. See the College’s four major squares and learn about its 400-year history.

Finish the tour at the library to see the famous medieval illuminated Book of Kells, one of the world’s great treasures. This evening, join fellow travelers in a Smithsonian Journeys Traveler’s Corner at a local pub. (B)

Day 4 — Dublin / Wicklow / Glendalough / Powerscourt Estate

Excursion: Drive out of Dublin and spend the day in County Wicklow. Often referred to as the Garden of Ireland, you will revel in gorgeous scenes of mountains, forests, lakes, and meadows during your journey. Explore​ Russborough House, an impressive 18th-century Palladian mansion that offers some of the most beautiful views in Ireland. Drive across the Wicklow Mountains to Glendalough, a 6th-century monastic settlement founded by St. Kevin and famous for its Round Tower.

After lunch, continue to Powerscourt Estate, an 18th-century architectural masterpiece where you’ll discover splendid Greek and Italian-inspired statuary, decorative ironwork, a Japanese garden, and the occasional herd of deer. (B,L)

Day 5 – Dublin

Gather this morning for a presentation by your Smithsonian Journeys Expert.

Excursion:  Learn the history of the 1916 Rising, the watershed revolt that set into motion the 1949 establishment of the Republic of Ireland, and the people behind it.  Kilmainham Gaol, an infamous prison that has witnessed some of the most heroic and tragic events in Ireland's modern history. Attractions include a major exhibition detailing the political and penal history of the prison and its restoration. Now re-purposed, it has been the location for film and theater productions.

Excursion: There’s a major debate about where whiskey originated. It is widely accepted that it has Celtic origins but was it the Scots or the Irish who first produced it? On a visit to the boutique Pearse Lyons Distillery, sample various whiskeys and hear stories about the historic area of Dublin surrounding the distillery.

In the early evening, gather for an engaging talk on Great Irish Literary Figures. Afterward, dinner will be served at a popular restaurant. (B,D)

Day 6 — Howth / Dun Laoghaire

Excursion: Board a coastal train and journey north to the picturesque fishing village of Howth. Enjoy lunch at one of the popular restaurants along Howth harbor. After lunch, explore the village at leisure. See the resident seal colony, then embark the MV St. Bridget for a cruise on Dublin Bay for the Victorian seaside town of Dun Laoghaire. Along the way, listen to local commentary as you pass the island of Ireland’s Eye and Lambay Island, where the Vikings invaders first landed in the 9th century. You’ll see Howth Head, Baily and Kish Lighthouses, Bull Island, and Clontarf.

Return via DART to Dublin city center and the hotel. Get together in the early evening in the Smithsonian Journeys Traveler’s Corner. (B,L)

Day 7 — Boyne Valley/ Dublin

Start the day with a lecture by your Smithsonian Journeys Expert.

Excursion: Step back in time to Neolithic Ireland in Brú na Bóinne, a culturally rich area by the bend of the Boyne River. Learn about the social, religious, and architectural importance of these tombs, which became the center of subsequent communities who lived here.

After a delicious lunch, continue to Trim Castle, a beautiful Norman castle built along the Boyne River. This massive Anglo-Norman structure, built over a span of thirty years, features an impressive twenty-sided cruciform design.

Independent Exploration: Spend an evening at leisure in Dublin. (B,L)

Day 8 — Dublin

Excursion: Dublin was the “second city” in the British Empire, and today you’ll find some of the finest examples of Georgian architecture in Europe. Visit the Georgian Architecture and National Museum of Ireland-Archaeology. Witness Dublin’s Georgian buildings, and listen to stories about life across the social spectrum in 18th-century Dublin while passing the National Gallery, Leinster House, Oscar Wilde Statue, and other buildings from that period. Take a guided tour of National Museum of Ireland- Archaeology, which houses prehistoric gold artifacts and metalwork from the Celtic Iron Age.

Independent Exploration: During this time at leisure, relax in the city’s park or visit the National Gallery to browse art by great masters. 

Gather for a festive farewell dinner to celebrate a wonderful week in Dublin. (B,D)

Day 9 — Return to the U.S.

This morning, transfer to Dublin’s International Airport for your flight to your gateway city. (B)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)