“May you always have a clean shirt, a clear conscience, and enough coins in your pocket to buy a pint!”An Irish Toast by someone who was probably on an ireland breweries & distilleries tour
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Céad míle fáilt (a hundred thousand welcomes)! Despite being a relatively small country, Ireland has made some fairly big contributions to worldwide beer culture. Chances are when you hear the words “Irish pub” you can conjure up a pretty distinct image that has been imitated around the globe. Irish beer history reaches all the way back to the Bronze age when the first form of beer in Ireland is believed to have been brewed, though a variety of plants and herbs take the place of hops. And taking a look at modern day, Ireland is experiencing a craft beer boom, developing new creative brews around the country.
We add to our brewery visits some walking and hiking each day as well as several distillery visits. Spend your days in perfect balance between physical activities and brewery/distillery experiences. Evenings are spent in accommodations that range from fun and modern hotels to warm and welcoming country guesthouses, along with meals at local pubs and restaurants.
Explore breweries ranging from the very well-known such as Guinness to smaller, newer craft breweries you likely have never heard of, such as Ballykilcavan Brewery. And as a change of pace, we’ll also sample a bit of the harder stuff and visit a few whiskey distilleries.
We’ll be pairing our beer experiences with a variety of splendid, picturesque hikes throughout the Irish countryside and coastline. The hikes are more rambles than peak climbing, so suitable for most people, and we can tailor the activity level to your group. We’ll visit some of the top natural sights in the country such as the Rock of Cashel, the Cliffs of Moher, and the Dingle Peninsula. Our towns include Dublin, Killarney, Dingle, Limerick, and Galway.
For a fantastic Ireland Breweries, Distilleries, & Hiking Adventure grab your own group with a minimum of six participants and select a date of your choosing. If you are looking for a group tour, consider our Scotland Inn-to-Inn Trekking and Whisky Adventure.
Private Tour Info
This tour is available for private groups of a minimum of six people.Start planning your private tour
- Cost Per Person: $4,250
- Single Supplement: $900
- Private Tour Minimum: 6
- Activities: Hiking, Brewery Tours, and Distillery Visits
- Difficulty: All Ability Levels
- Guides: Yannick de Cocquéau
- Touring and tasting at 11 different breweries from huge (Guinness) to tiny (Dick Mack's Brewhouse)
- Rambling on scenic Irish trails and country roads, taking in Ireland's stunning beauty
- Visiting several Irish whiskey distilleries including Killarney, Dingle, and Burren distilleries
- Seeing some of Ireland's iconic sights such as the Rock of Cashel and the Cliffs of Moher
- Starting and ending in Dublin, heart of Ireland and of the Irish beer industry
Fáilte (Welcome) to Ireland! Our adventure starts at 1:00 PM, allowing you to arrive in Dublin this morning or the day before (which we highly recommend). After a few short introductions, we head out on a short educational and fun walking tour of Dublin to learn about the history and culture of this incredible city. We end our tour at Guinness's Storehouse, located in the heart of the St. James's Gate Brewery. We'll enjoy an engaging self-guided tour that ends with a pint of their iconic beer and instruction on how to properly pour it. We'll then head over to the Guinness Open Gate Experimental Brewery to taste some of the new creations. We finish things off with a wonderful welcome dinner at Porterhouse Brewing. After dinner, you can walk back to our hotel or head out for a drink in Dublin's oldest pub dating back to 1198, The Brazen Head.
After breakfast at the hotel, we'll head out on the road for our first brewery stop of the day. But first we'll stop at the Rock of Dunamase, the ruins of an ancient Celtic castle where we can wander around on our own - no visitor center or entrance fee here. It is then on to Ballykilcavan Brewery for a farm tour, brewery visit, and charcuterie beer pairing lunch - 13 generations and 383 years in one family! After lunch we travel on with a visit to the Whitefield Brewery, which gets great reviews for its quality beers using traditional Irish styles and ingredients, and then on to our home for the night in Killarney. This is our longest drive day, four hours, as we get to the lovely southwest corner of Ireland. Dinner tonight is in the pizza pub of Killarney Brewing.
We depart this morning for 9 White Deer Brewing in the region of West Cork, an area known for the high number of people who speak Irish on a daily basis. The brewery is not generally open to the public but we know the owner and that gets us in the door. We then move on to the cute village of Kenmare where you can enjoy lunch on your own, followed by a visit to Tom Creane Brewery, a very new establishment (November of 2019) with a rustic taproom and with owners sporting super interesting backgrounds. We'll then shuttle to the Gap of Dunloe, an incredibly scenic mountain pass where we'll walk on trails and small roads to Kate Kearney's Cottage, an Irish pub with 170 years of history and a good place to grab a pint if you so desire. Dinner is Killarney Brewing Company's second location, the main brewery, preceded by a tour of their distillery.
Our destination today is one of the cutest and most scenically-located villages in Ireland: Dingle. We'll break up the drive there by doing a walk on the Three Peaks Annascaul Meelin Hill Loop, with views overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Arriving in Dingle, you'll have time for lunch on your own at one of the many restaurants on the main street of town. After lunch we'll meet at the Dingle Distillery for a tasting. While they are currently closed for tours, we'll get them to open up their warehouse for a tasting for our group. We then switch back to beer with a visit to Dick Mack's, a pub that has been in operation and in the same family since 1899, with a recently added brewhouse. With outdoor seating it is a great place to spend the remainder of the afternoon. We'll then check into our central Dingle hotel before walking to dinner at Ashes Restaurant, which offers local seafood as well as other traditional dishes.
The Dingle Peninsula and Ireland's southwest coast was named "The most beautiful place on earth" by National Geographic magazine. We'll drive to the very end of that beautiful peninsula to look out over the Atlantic, doing a morning hike at Slea Head. After, we'll head to the West Kerry Brewery, the original and first microbrewery in County Kerry, brewing traditional yet progressive beers. We'll then depart over Connor Pass for the town of Limerick and a tour and tasting at Treaty City Brewery, started by an Irish expat living in Vancouver, BC who started as a home brewer before moving back to Limerick. Dinner this evening is an your own at one of the local pubs or restaurants in town.
If Dingle is stunningly beautiful, the Cliffs of Moher are truly breathtaking. The Cliffs are a part of the UNESCO Global Geopark (a special region with outstanding geology) and rise an impressive 702 feet above the Atlantic Ocean at their highest points. We'll walk along the Cliffs of Moher Coastal Trail, taking in their raw natural beauty. We'll then make a stop at Burren Brewing with lunch at their associated Peter's Pub. After lunch we'll stop at Burren Distillers, a new company that is making Irish Whiskey in the spirit of the 13th century monks who first started distilling in the Burren region. It is then on to Galway, our home for the night, where we'll have a local dinner and perhaps an after-dinner drink at one of the many local pubs in the city.
After breakfast, we'll hit the road back to Dublin. But first it is one more brewery stop, this one at Galway Bay Brewery, one of Ireland's larger craft breweries, for a tour and tasting. We'll then say our farewells and drop you off at the Dublin airport for you to either hop on a flight home or continue exploring what Ireland has to offer.Book this Tour
PLEASE NOTE: Your exact hotels will depend on availability on the dates of your tour. In addition, keep in mind hotel rooms in Europe are often smaller than you are used to and there are not usually elevators, so pack lightly! (If you have traveled in Europe before, then you know what to expect.)
NIGHT 1 >> ASHLING HOTEL / DUBLIN
Located in the heart of Dublin's city center, this 4-star luxury hotel overlooks the Guinness Brewery and Phoenix Park. If you arrive to Dublin early, this is also nicely situated to explore the city on your own. The hotel has a spa, restaurant, bar, and even a small outdoor dining area. It is the perfect starting point for a week of adventure!
NIGHTS 2 & 3 >> ABBEY LODGE / KILLARNEY
This four-star hotel is situated in central Killarney, right across from Killarney Brewing, which we visit on the tour. And with the center of town being only three minutes walk away, you can easily stroll to see the sights, shops, and pubs of Killarney. With only 15 rooms, this small inn is a nice size with personal hospitality.
NIGHT 4 >> DINGLE BAY HOTEL / DINGLE
The Dingle Bay Hotel is located in the heart of Dingle, right next to the marina. It is Dingle's most modern hotel, with up-to-date comforts but a very welcoming atmosphere. Dingle itself is one of the cutest small towns in Ireland - which has plenty from which to choose! And if you are ready for a bit of Irish fun, Paudie's bar at the hotel is a local favorite.
NIGHT 5 >> THE GEORGE / LIMERICK
This boutique-style hotel boasts an eclectic mix of contemporary style and comfort in a perfect central location, right in Limerick's city center. At four stars you get all the luxury you need but you will be tempted to spend your free time wandering the streets of Limerick near the hotel.
NIGHT 6 >> THE DEAN / GALWAY
Located in the heart of Eyre Square in the center of Galway, this hotel offers warm and inviting accommodations amongst the hustle and bustle of the city. While the facade seems ultra modern, the hotel was built using part of an 1800s building that was in the location and also a section of the Galway to Clifden railway tunnel.Book this Tour
Arrival & Departure
You are free to arrive in Dublin (airport code: DUB) anytime you like prior to our after-lunch meeting on Day 1. This allows you to travel the day before or arrive that morning. However, if you are flying from North America we highly recommend arriving at least a day ahead of time to recover from your travel and any potential delays.
Our adventure ends the last afternoon of the trip in Dublin where we will drop all guests off at the airport no later than 1:00 PM to either catch their flight home (we would suggest not booking a flight earlier than 3:30 pm) or continue on to explore more of what Ireland - or Europe - has to offer.
- One professional guide. Yannick is based in Belgium but is our resident European beer expert.
- Double occupancy lodging is included. If you are traveling solo, you can choose to pay a single supplement for your own room or ask us to find you a roommate; you will need to pay the supplement if we are unable to do so.
- All breakfasts, two lunches, and five dinners are included. Gratuity for these meals is also included.
- All your transportation is included once you meet your guides on the first day until we say goodbye in Dublin on the last day.
- All scheduled tastings and brewery/distillery visits are included.
- NOT INCLUDED Beverages outside of brewery and distillery visits, desserts, lunches, gratuities to your guide, personal expenses and travel to and from the destination.
The weather in Ireland is always a bit unpredictable. While we will hope for clear skies and warm weather, it can rain throughout the year and you should be prepared for rain, wind, and cool temperatures. You'll want to bring layers that can easily be taken off and on during our various hikes.
This tour is rated For All Abilities and is a moderately active trip . The hiking is on country roads and trails and does have some incline but we are not climbing mountains. Daily mileage varies depending on beer tastings and other activities for each day but is roughly 5 - 12 kilometers for hiking. While you will get daily activity by walking each day, this is not the best trip for someone looking for a major workout and tons of mileage (check out some of our other hiking trips for that!). Conversely, this is not the best trip for someone not interested in being active on vacation (check out our Taste Vacations for that, which also includes this Ireland tour). We can adapt the hiking difficult for private groups.
In order to see and do as much as possible on this tour, we do have quite a bit of van time to get from place to place. We try to break up the driving with stops along the way as best we can. The good news is, the Irish countryside is absolutely beautiful, so you'll always have something pleasant to look at out the window!
Changes to the itinerary
While everything under “What is Included” will remain the same, the actual restaurants, hotels, and activities listed in our itineraries are subject to modifications. Changes that are out of our control are common – a restaurant closes or loses its awesome chef, a brewery changes its visiting hours, a hotel gets remodeled, a road or trail undergoes construction. You are entrusting us to create an outstanding vacation for you and so it is possible we may take the liberty of making necessary changes to the itinerary that will improve your overall trip experience. If there is any one experience that is going to make or break your trip, please discuss this with us in advance! We will attempt to keep our website itinerary as current as possible and communicate any major changes with you in the weeks prior to the tour.
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