There's no shortage of stunning scenery in Ireland. Around every turn, it seems, lies another opportunity to capture that epic Instagram-worthy shot-ancient castles and Stone Age ruins, rugged sea cliffs and soft meadows, Dublin's cobblestone streets and country cottages with thatched roofs.
Films and television series, in fact, have long set scenes against Ireland's wild beauty, and an Instagram post of the Dark Hedges or Skellig Michael will draw instant recognition from Game of Thrones and Star Wars fans.
CIE Tours International ensures its guests a steady stream of Insta-worthy moments, with a wide array of tours that highlight Ireland's most historic and picturesque sites. Here are just a few of the many options:
Jewels of Ireland
The aptly named Jewels of Ireland takes guests on a 14-day adventure that spans the country. Starting in the capital city of Dublin, it continues to Blarney Castle and the charming sailing village of Kinsale. Following Cork's rugged western coastline, guests continue to Killarney, with its picturesque lakes set against a backdrop of Ireland's highest mountains.
More photogenic destinations follow, including The Dingle Peninsula's Slea Head Drive; the Cliffs of Moher, rising 700 feet from the Atlantic; a catamaran cruise of Ireland's only fjord; Slieve League-Europe's highest sea cliffs; the natural wonder of the Giant's Causeway; Antrim-site of the Dark Hedges made famous in Game of Thrones; Belfast, with its Victorian architecture and Titanic Belfast; and the 5,000-year-old burial tombs of Newgrange and Knowth.
Taste of Ireland
The five-day Taste of Ireland makes the most of its shorter itinerary, focusing on Ireland's pastoral midlands and sunny southern coast. It begins in Dublin, with a driving tour past Trinity College and other historic buildings, rows of Georgian townhouses with colorful doorways, the Financial Center and River Liffey before stopping for a guided tour of Dublin Castle. Guests continue the next day to the majestic Rock of Cashel, Blarney Castle and picturesque Killarney.
Then it's on to the spectacular Ring of Kerry and the Skellig Experience, where guests will learn about the ancient monastic outpost on Skellig Michael, one of the locations for Star Wars VII. The tour also includes a sheepherding demonstration and a visit to the world-famous Cliffs of Moher and ends at Bunratty Castle with a medieval-style feast.
Private Driver Experiences
For those who prefer more flexibility in their travels-including the ability to pull over at a moment's notice to capture that perfect shot, CIE Tours' Private Driver experiences are an ideal alternative to a guided coach vacation. Guests can create an adventure from scratch or start with a suggested itinerary and customize it as they like.
One such option is the Private Driver Ireland Foodie Tour-the perfect choice for those who plan their travels around great meals (with the dinner-plate Instagram shots to match). Recommendations include an insider's walking tour of Dublin's culinary scene, a visit to the Teeling Whiskey Distillery, a chance to browse and sample produce from around the world at the historic English Market in Cork and a traditional Irish lunch at Davitt's in Kenmare.
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