By Ilona Kauremszky

Q: My great grandparents came from Ireland. While our family has never visited, we are now making serious travel plans to go in the summer. I am not familiar with Internet searches and would appreciate any guidance you might have regarding packages and itinerary suggestions. We would welcome travelling with a group and are open to doing sightseeing independently too.

A: What an ideal situation to be in. Sometimes when we lock ourselves into a travelling experience you could lose out on seeing many beautiful areas. For example, let’s say you hated travelling with others, you could miss out on some great stories, and potential friendships that often results from travelling together.

The Emerald Isle is certainly laden with countless trip opportunities. For escorted tours, several tour companies offer Ireland specific trips. Royal Irish Tours has a list of trips. You might like to consider an 8-day bus trip called the Kerry Royal starting from $1449 based on double occupancy excluding airfare. This is a leisurely tour with two and three night stays visiting the southern counties of Ireland. Price includes 7 nights’ accommodation, breakfast, transportation and more. For additional information, contact them at 905-773-6773 or toll-free 1-866-907-8687 or visit

Other tour companies like Globus, Trafalgar and Insight Vacations also have a variety of escorted trips. Trafalgar is offering a 7-day escorted tour called “Irish Jaunt” starting from $1160 based on double occupancy for land tours only, and includes five nights at B&Bs, 8 meals, a welcome drink, visits to several historic sites and more. For tour information, call them at 1-800-352-4444 or visit

For the independent minded, you can rent a car and go as you please to visit the various sites and towns. If you log onto Tourism Ireland’s virtual office, click on “Vacation Offers” and then the sublink “Go as you please” for a host of packages. In addition, tour operators like Transat Holidays is offering a variety of 7-night packages tailored for the self-drive vacationer.

There’s “go as you please” driving holiday starting from $949 per person based on double occupancy excluding taxes that offers roundtrip airfare from Toronto, seven nights in a B&B, a touring map of Ireland and a seven-day car rental. For tour information, visit around since 1989 has a seven-night driving holiday titled “City Lights and Country Delights” starting from $599 per person based on double occupancy. This land-only package includes two nights’ accommodation in a 3-star Dublin hotel, five nights in B&Bs with a full Irish breakfast, five days car rental and more. For reservations call toll-free 1-800-668-2958, or dial 416-482-0449 or visit

For any of the above you can also see your travel agent.


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