Eire Climbing and Cultural Journey April 2024

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To actually expertise Eire – you could really feel it – really feel its land, its rain, its temperate local weather and most of all – its soul. This can be a nation that can not be rushed and exploring it on foot is among the finest methods to expertise it. This enables you the chance to satisfy the locals, come nose to nose with 1000’s of years of historical past and see what it’s that makes Irish folks so distinctive.

I’ve partnered with information extraordinaire, Rachel Nolan of Rachel’s Irish Adventures, to place collectively an Ottsworld tour that will deliver Nation Mayo’s landscapes, climbing, native tradition, and distinctive touches collectively in an unbelievable personalized tour.

Ireland tour county mayo hiking
Ottsworld Eire Tour – A singular solution to see Eire!

Overview and Map

Dates: April 20 – 27, 2024

Value: €2,780* (€450 single complement)
This can be a small group tour – solely 7 folks + me! The house will replenish quick so enroll rapidly.

*All costs shall be charged within the Euro – some USD value fluctuations may happen by the point of your remaining fee – nevertheless you possibly can pay in full at any time and lock within the value.

This isn’t your run of the mill Eire tour. That is an unique personalized Ottsworld tour within the firm of me as your host, accompanied by our skilled native Irish information – Rachel. Our small group of seven folks will get to go to a few of Eire’s finest stored secrets and techniques, hike on distant trails, keep in boutique lodging, meet locals, expertise distinctive Irish tradition, and benefit from the lush inexperienced of the Eire panorama within the spring.

I may even provide images instruction for these of you who’re occupied with enhancing your images (cellphone or digital camera). As well as, I shall be taking pictures of the complete tour and every visitor will get a obtain of all photos I take. So should you don’t need to take photos – I’ll do it for you!

The journey will discover the entire fantastic thing about County Mayo’s stretch of shoreline alongside the Wild Atlantic Method and it’s islands. What’s that – you haven’t heard of County Mayo? That’s precisely why I selected it! It’s a hidden gem away from the closely traveled websites in Eire.

county Mayo Map
County Mayo is in darkish inexperienced

Whereas most individuals head to the Ring of Kerry or the Cliffs of Moher, we’ll have the attractive shoreline of County Mayo all to ourselves.

The right way to E book This Tour

I’d like to speak to you first to reply any of your questions previous to you reserving. Subsequently observe these steps to e book:

  1. Ship me an electronic mail at [email protected] letting me learn about your curiosity. We’ll arrange a name to debate any questions you’ve gotten. This shall be on a primary come first serve foundation – there are solely 7 spots out there on this tour.
  2. I’ll ship you a fee hyperlink to Rachel’s website the place you possibly can e book your deposit and safe your spot for this practice tour. 500€ non refundable deposit is required to safe spot.
  3. Ultimate fee is due January 21, 2024 (90 Days previous to April 20, 2024)

Cancellation Coverage and Charge

  • If you happen to cancel greater than 90 days earlier than the beginning date of the vacation, you’ll lose the deposit quantity.
  • If you happen to cancel between 89 – 42 days earlier than beginning date of the vacation, you’ll lose 50% of vacation value
  • If you happen to cancel lower than 42 days earlier than the beginning date of the vacation, you’ll lose 100% of the vacation value

I extremely advocate that you just get journey insurance coverage to cowl any dangers of cancellation. I usually use Allianz Journey Insurance coverage for my very own travels and it is vitally moderately priced.

Day by day Itinerary

The itinerary is one-of-a-kind and is full of included experiences similar to a number of ‘spa’ experiences, visits to sheep farms, entrance to historical websites, lamb cuddling, cooking expertise, falconry, whiskey tasting, and the possibility to satisfy plenty of locals. As well as, we have now included loads of hikes, walks, and even some biking!

Word: The journey begins in Ballina and ends in Westport. You’ll be reponsible in your personal transportation to the beginning and from the end, nevertheless there’s a common prepare and buses which are straightforward to take from Dublin with a number of departures occasions throughout any given day.

Day 1 – April 20 – Arrival in Ballina Eire

Your vacation kicks off within the charming city of Ballina in County Mayo the place your information will meet you on arrival and switch you to the resort. Settle into your room and take within the magnificent view over the River Moy and Belleek Woods, go to a museum, and revel in a river stroll.

Get pleasure from a day baking expertise in Marjorie’s kitchen, hosted by Rachel’s mom in her kitchen. Marjorie is the creator of 4 cookery books and loves nothing greater than to share her ardour within the kitchen, adopted by savoring the fruits of your labor over a scorching cuppa tea.

Marjorie Ballina
Marjorie’s dwelling baking class – Picture by Susan Portnoy

We’ll get pleasure from a welcome dinner for the group to get to know each other. After diner when you have any power left, we’ll hit the city and go to Pat Rouse’s bar, Ballina’s oldest family-owned pub the place a standard Irish music session and singsong will go on late into the night time. You could even get the possibility to drag your individual pint of Guinness.

Day 1 Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Sligo Coast – Following the traces of the Historic Queen Maeve of Connacht

After a refreshing sleep and a scrumptious breakfast. It’s off to hit the paths of Mayo and get our boots soiled for the primary time. At present we’ll hike the great Knocknarea hill and add a stone to the 1000’s adorning the imposing grave or cairn of Maeve, the nice warrior queen, which overlooks Strandhill.

Distance: 7.5km | Elevation achieve 404m | 2-3 hours

Knocknara hike
Queen Maeve’s Hike

It’s time to get pleasure from an natural, fair-trade espresso on the excellent Shells Café which overlooks the strand, having fun with one in all their delicious do-it-yourself treats. With time to chill out and discover this quaint location.

Go to Aughris Head Seaside bar – a standard thatch roof pub and revel in a warming Irish espresso.

Get pleasure from a completely distinctive native expertise and unwind with a seaweed bathtub in Enniscrone. Seaweed baths are literally a centuries-old observe in Eire. Courting again to the twelfth century, monks harvested the seaweed from the coastlines and gave it to the poor as a nourishing meals. We’ll get pleasure from a soak on the 100+ 12 months previous Kilcullen’s Bathtub Home perched proper on the coast the place they harvest their seaweed.

Get pleasure from a hearty dinner in Ballina and conventional Irish music at Lilly’s Bar.

Day 2 Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 3: Conventional Irish Trades & Treats

Begin the morning assembly and dealing with birds of prey. The Birds of Prey Expertise is a singular alternative to satisfy and deal with a wide range of Birds on the Mount Falcon Aviary.  Get an enchanting perception into the lives of those magnificent creatures and get the possibility to carry and admire them shut up; it’s a really visceral and satisfying expertise!

Ireland Falconry

Tour the Foxford Woollen Mills and study the historical past of the mill in addition to how vital it’s to the close by village. Have an opportunity to buy any wool mementos. Get pleasure from lunch on the Woolen Mills Cafe.

Head again to Ballina and get fitted for bikes at Rachel’s bike shed. We’ll cycle to the Monasteries of the Moy, discover the Belleek woods, and Rosserk Abbey. There shall be a lot of events to cease off and take photos and study concerning the historical past and traditions of the area…just like the Fairy Path!

For anybody who doesn’t need to cycle at present, an alternative choice is to sit back out and revel in a calming remedy in an award-winning spa (at your individual value).

This night you’ve gotten an actual deal with earlier than dinner. A whiskey appreciation masterclass, your whisky knowledgeable will take you thru a number of Irish Whiskey and educate you on this world-famous spirit and its origins. Style the completely different whiskeys and ask any questions you might have. Following the masterclass, we’ll have dinner at Quay West.

Day 3 Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 4: North Mayo coast (The Ceide Coast)

Depart Ballina with a scenic drive to the coast the place we’ll take a straightforward strolling route alongside the coast to a hidden seaside. We’ll additionally make a cease on the iconic Downpatrick Head the place your information will deliver this place to life with details and folklore about time passed by.

Downpatrick Head
Downpatrick Head

Now it time to reward you in your morning’s journey with some scrumptious lunch and residential baked treats at Mary’s Cottage Kitchen. The right place to cease for some tasty dwelling cooking located within the coastal village of Ballycastle. Mary’s Cottage Kitchen was constructed within the early 1800’s and maintains many conventional options such because the stone wall exterior, open loft, uncovered beams, flag flooring and an excellent open hearth.

Subsequent, it’s time to go to the fantastically Ceide Fields which is the oldest, most in depth Stone Age monument on the earth, which lies beneath our ft! Consisting of megalithic tombs, fields and homes, the relics are softly coated by a pure blanket lavatory, which itself is a marvel with its distinctive natural world. Put together to be blown away on the viewing platform on the fringe of the 110-metre cliff shut by.

Tonight we keep on the luxurious Ceide Glamping Pods. Every of the 6 Glamping Pods comes with a surprising coastal view. And the very best half is that we are going to have the complete space to ourselves. We’ll get pleasure from dinner within the frequent space whereas we benefit from the sound of the waves crashing on the coast.

Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5: Off the Crushed Path

After a refreshing sleep and a scrumptious breakfast. It’s off to hit probably the most beautiful trails in County Mayo. This area of the Wild Atlantic Method has among the most dramatic shoreline to be discovered anyplace in Eire. The hike we’ll get pleasure from at present was described in Lonely planet as “The best sustained coastal stroll in western Eire, with a profusion of precipitous cliffs, crags, caves, chasms and islands alongside the distant North Mayo coast”.

County May hiking
County Mayo Cliff Hike

Distance: 7km | Elevation achieve: 300m | 2-3 hours 

After the difficult hike reward your self with a standard heat whiskey and lunch at Connoly’s Pub and revel in assembly some locals at this tiny, distant institution.

Drive to Ballycroy Nationwide Park. Situated on the Western seaboard in northwest Mayo, the park covers an enormous 15,000 hectares of uninhabited and unspoilt wilderness, dominated by the Nephin Beg mountain vary. To the west of the mountains is the Owenduff Bathroom, one of many final intact lively blanket lavatory methods in Western Europe. If time permits we’ll do a brief stroll there.

Drive to Achill Island, the most important of the Irish isles but it solely has 2500 inhabitants. Right here we’ll keep on the secluded Bervie B&B. The magical beachside home was as soon as a coast guard station, and since 1932 has been the final word escape for the numerous visitors who’ve stayed right here. It’s a low, tucked-in type of place with a little bit wicket gate giving direct entry to the seaside. There’s an other-worldliness concerning the Bervie that could be very uncommon today.

In spite of everything of that climbing – get pleasure from some scorching & chilly Atlantic remedy! Heat up within the cute beachside saunas after which cool off with a refreshing dip within the Atlantic Ocean…and repeat. Dinner at Bervie B&B.

Included: Breakfast

Day 6: Achill Island & Clew Bay

After having fun with the very best breakfast on Achill Island, we’ll drive to Keem seaside which is honored as among the finest seashores on the earth. From there we’ll hike as much as Eire’s highest sea cliffs (it’s steep – however quick)!

Subsequent we’ll go to the Abandoned Village at Slievemore which consists of some 80 – 100 stone cottages positioned alongside a mile lengthy stretch of highway on the southern slopes of Slievemore mountain. Settlement on this space dates from a minimum of early Mediaval occasions and we’ll get to stroll by way of the village on a straightforward highway stroll.

Keem Beach Achill Island
Keem Seaside

After lunch on the island we’ll drive in the direction of the village of Westport. We are able to have a ‘select your individual journey’ afternoon with a number of stops to select from relying on curiosity, climate, time, and so on)

Keep within the widespread city of Westport tonight the place we’ll get pleasure from dinner, dwell music, and iconic pubs.

Included: Breakfast

Day 7: Killary Fjord & South Mayo

Morning drive alongside Clew Bay and cease on the iconic Croagh Patrick to get pleasure from views of the notorious peak that 1000’s pilgrimage to the highest of.

Lunch open air if climate permits. For the animal lovers, we get to visist an iconic Eire sheep farm. The Killary Sheep Farm in Connemara is a standard working mountain farm with approx 200 ewes and lambs roaming freely within the mountain overlooking Killary Fjord, on the Wild Atlantic Method. Right here we’ll get to see a sheep canine demonstration, study concerning the farm, and even get to cuddle some spring lambs!

We’ll head again to Westport the place you’ll get time to do some remaining souvenier procuring and revel in extra of the colourful city. We’ll have our goodbye dinner (how did it go so quick?!) in Westport that night the place we will share our favourite Eire recollections and enjoy our new friendships.

Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 8: April 27 – Departure Day

After breakfast you possibly can catch the prepare again to Dublin, or possibly you’ll determine to stay round and revel in extra of Eire’s west coast!

Prepare to Dublin (direct):

  • 07:15 – 10:27
  • 09:45 – 13:04
  • 13:10 – 16:29
  • 18:20 – 21:36

(Occasions could be barely completely different in 2024)

Bus to Galway:

  • 06:18
  • 09:19
  • 12:27
  • 15:19
  • 18:19

(Approx. 2 hours)

What’s Included

  • 7 nights keep in an en-suite room at our premium hand-picked lodging.
  • Scrumptious Full Irish breakfast every morning, and three Dinners.
  • 7 days actions with an knowledgeable Irish information who will accompany the group all through the vacation
  • All experiences as outlined within the itinerary; Whiskey Tasting, Foxford woollen mills, Baking class, Seaweed bathtub, Ceide fields, Sheep canine demonstration, Sauna Achill Island, Bike rental.
  • Courtesy transfers to and from every day’s strolling places and all transport as outlined within the itinerary.
  • Fundamental images instruction throughout the journey.
  • Entry to a full gallery of photographs (shot by me!) of the complete journey, you should utilize for private functions.

What’s Not Included:

  • Flights to/from Eire
  • Transportation to Ballina and departure from Westport
  • Journey Insurance coverage
  • Some dinners and lunches
  • Private drinks
  • Medical prices
  • Gratuities

Our Superior Native Information

When you’ve gotten the suitable information, it may possibly ‘make’ a whole journey! Rachel is the final word out of doors information. She’s an unbelievable athlete and such an exquisite advocate of her dwelling area in County Mayo. One in all my favourite issues about staying in Ballina is that it’s the city she grew up in (and nonetheless lives there) and with that comes unbelievable native connections. Actually, we could have particular cooking class from her mom. It doesn’t get rather more native than that! Plus, Rachel ensures that we all know everybody on the town introducing us to the bartenders after we go right into a pub, restaurant house owners, and even the native man who smokes fish.


What makes this tour ‘Ottsworld’? This isn’t your common tour…it’s an Ottsworld tour. I have to confess – that I’m form of a journey snob. I don’t love to do the ‘anticipated’ or see the standard sights; I like to hunt out the bizarre, and fewer traveled. I’ve labored collectively very carefully with Rachel to place collectively a tour that impresses even me! It has all of my favourite components in it: climbing, native journey, booze, hands-on native experiences, and images. Sure – all of this in solely 8 days! Right here what previous visitors needed to say under.

“Undoubtedly a ten! I actually loved the truth that the tour was a “white glove supply” experience- all the pieces was so meticulously deliberate so we didn’t have to fret about transportation, meals, what we’re doing for the day, or if we’re attempting to an excessive amount of or not sufficient. I went again to reread the outline of the tour (revealed in Could) after we returned dwelling and couldn’t consider that we hit EVERY. SINGLE. ITEM. AS. PLANNED

“It was excellent for me, a bit difficult however that’s what I like. The primary day was probably the most stunning, second probably the most difficult, third very fascinating with the steps by way of the woods.”

“undoubtedly met expectations and likewise uncovered me to issues I’m positive I’d not have thought of if I used to be planning a visit.”

“Meals was AWESOME – manner higher than anticipated. Appreciated doing issues I’d not have finished alone”

“Thanks in your endurance in serving to us seize wonderful recollections! The one factor I knew earlier than your class was the rule of thirds, and now I’ve an awesome basis of information to construct upon- no extra level and shoot! Instagram be careful!”

Who Ought to Contemplate This Tour?

  • Individuals who prefer to discover the lesser-known locations, and be adventurous and lively.
  • People who find themselves versatile.  Try to be prepared to exhibit flexibility, as itineraries might change as a result of climate, and it helps when you have a ‘prepared to strive new issues’ angle.
  • Individuals who don’t thoughts getting moist or having fun with the thrill of inclement climate.
  • Individuals who really feel comfy climbing 3 to five miles in uneven terrain.


In case you have any questions – please be at liberty to contact me at [email protected]. I’m completely happy to reply something concerning the journey!


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