2024 - Belfast & A Beautiful Railway Journey
A Crusader Favourite Tour
Cosmopolitan Belfast has undergone a remarkable transformation into a hip and happening city with a glittering waterfront lined with modern art, a fabulous foodie scene and magnificent Victorian architecture. From your Belfast base you will discover Northern Ireland's beauty, intertwined with its tragic history, rich culture and the renowned friendliness of its people. One of the tour highlights for 2024 is the spectacular rail journey from Coleraine to Derry. Northern Ireland is wild craggy mountains, magical lakes and a sweeping coastline, unspoilt by the passage of time. The scenic Causeway Coastal Route, snakes along through glens, waterfalls and small villages, with the sea on one side and towering cliffs on the other. A visit to the Giant's Causeway, the mysterious geological formation is included as is a bonus stop at Castle Kennedy Gardens (one of Scotland's hidden treasures) en-route to the ferry on Day 2.
PLEASE NOTE: Price is per person and based on two people sharing a twin/double room. Single room supplements and upgrades are not included.
- Hotel for 4 nights in Belfast with breakfast & dinner with tea / coffee
- 2 overnight hotels with breakfast (one with dinner)
- Entrance to Castle Kennedy Gardens (Scotland)
- Porterage at main hotel
- Guided tour of Belfast
- Entrance to the Titanic Belfast
- Entrance to the Giant's Causeway Visitor Experience
- One way train journey Coleraine - Londonderry
- Visit to Dublin
- Excursions as stated
Your ItineraryDAY 1 - After joining your holiday coach, you will travel northwards with ample stops for refreshments and lunch before arriving at the Cairndale Hotel across the border in Dumfries. DBB
DAY 2 - After breakfast, continue further west through Dumfries and Galloway for an included visit to the magnificent Castle Kennedy Gardens, just a few miles east of Stranraer. 75 acres of spectacularly designed loch-side landscape create a romantic garden paradise with something for everyone to enjoy. From stunning fauna to beautiful scenery, sculpted landforms, spectacular walks and popular bird hides, the Gardens are a hidden treasure in South West Scotland. The inspiration of the 2nd Earl of Stair in the 1730s, the colourful displays of rhododendrons, azaleas and embothriums are legendary, so too are the many rare and exotic plants, 20 Champion Trees, the walled garden, atmospheric avenues and the romantic ruins of 16th Century Castle Kennedy. The giant lily pond is a truly remarkable sight. There is a tea room and gift shop.
Continue to Cairnryan for the afternoon sailing with Stena Line to Belfast. The crossing takes two hours 15 minutes and on arrival in Belfast, it's a short drive straight to your main holiday hotel, The Stormont, for dinner. DBB
DAY 3 - 5 - At leisure in Belfast with THREE included excursions.
The Spectacular Antrim Coast & Giants Causeway
Take a scenic drive along the Antrim Coast Road passing through the spectacular scenery centred around The Glens of Antrim. The Glens are an area of outstanding natural beauty and are a major tourist attraction in north Antrim. Much of this area has been used in filming the TV series 'The Game of Thrones'. Follow the coast road, through Larne, Carnlough, Cushendall and onto the National Trust village of Cushendun. A highlight today is the mighty Giant's Causeway, created by volcanic activity. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the Giant's Causeway is a magnificent, mysterious geological formation on the North East coast of Co Antrim steeped in myth and legend. There is a shuttle bus service (Causeway Coaster) from the visitor centre down to the shore for those who do not wish to walk (small fee applies - approx. £2 return).
Guided Tour of Belfast
Enjoy a guided tour aboard a local bus starting and finishing at your hotel, with free time to explore. Tour the city's sights including the Queen's University and the Waterfront Hall, with the opportunity to visit the Falls or Shankill Roads where politically inspired murals can be seen. Maybe enjoy a drink in the Crown Bar opposite the Grand Opera House, the only pub owned by the National Trust. Enjoy Belfast's thriving, cosmopolitan scene with its many bars and restaurants. A visit to Titanic Belfast, is included as it is a "must see" on any tour of Belfast. It is located in the heart of the city, right beside the historic site of this world-famous ship's construction. Explore its six floors of interactive galleries and experience the sights, sounds, smells and stories of life aboard the doomed RMS Titanic. The story of Titanic - from her conception, construction and launch to fateful maiden voyage – is an unforgettable experience. Belfast is a city full of heart and one of the easiest cities to navigate as it is split into quarters - The Titanic Quarter, The Cathedral Quarter, Queen's Quarter and The Gaeltacht Quarter.
A Beautiful Rail Journey to City of Derry / Londonderry
Enjoy the train journey from Coleraine to Derry described by Michael Palin as 'one of the most beautiful rail journeys in the world'. The track runs alongside stunning, unspoilt beaches and through Ireland's longest railway tunnels, passed the cliffs of Downhill and the impressive Binevenagh Mountain to arrive in Derry / Londonderry. Dominating the north-western landscapes of Ireland, astride the flowing waters of the Foyle, is 6th Century Derry that today resonates to the sounds of the 21st Century. Long an undiscovered gem, the city is emerging from a long and colourful history. Meander through the bustling streets of the only completely Walled City left in Ireland or the British Isles, and listen to the echoes of 1450 years of history. Stroll along its 17th century walls which are over 400 years old, and marvel at the ever-changing skyline of a city which is constant only in the warmth of its welcome. There will be the opportunity of a guided tour here. Full details from your driver.
DAY 6 - Dublin
After breakfast depart Belfast for Dublin, some free time before taking the mid-afternoon sailing back to Holyhead. It is recommended to have a meal on board as it will be a mid-evening arrival for your overnight at 3* Beaufort Park Hotel in Mold. BB
DAY 7 - After a leisurely breakfast retrace your steps, with ample stops for refreshments. Continue via interchange back to your local joining points arriving home mid/late evening. Back to top
Stormont Hotel, BelfastThis smart 4* hotel is located on the outskirts of Belfast centre, adjacent to the Stormont Estate overlooking immaculately maintained wooded landscape.
he superb facilities include a refurbished lounge and stylish, cosmopolitan restaurant. Bright, spacious guestrooms are tastefully decorated and offer all
mod cons and singles are double/twin for sole use.
There is a lift.
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