Road Scholar : Home
The Best of Ireland: The Coast, the Countryside and Dublin

Program Number: 18731RJ
Start and End Dates:
5/8/2014 - 5/22/2014; 3/31/2016 - 4/14/2016; 4/14/2016 - 4/28/2016; 5/5/2016 - 5/19/2016; 5/12/2016 - 5/26/2016; 5/26/2016 - 6/9/2016; 6/2/2016 - 6/16/2016; 6/16/2016 - 6/30/2016; 6/23/2016 - 7/7/2016; 7/7/2016 - 7/21/2016; 8/11/2016 - 8/25/2016; 8/25/2016 - 9/8/2016; 9/1/2016 - 9/15/2016; 9/2/2016 - 9/16/2016; 9/8/2016 - 9/22/2016; 9/9/2016 - 9/23/2016; 9/15/2016 - 9/29/2016; 9/16/2016 - 9/30/2016; 9/22/2016 - 10/6/2016; 9/23/2016 - 10/7/2016; 9/29/2016 - 10/13/2016; 10/6/2016 - 10/20/2016; 10/7/2016 - 10/21/2016; 10/13/2016 - 10/27/2016; 10/14/2016 - 10/28/2016; 10/20/2016 - 11/3/2016;
Duration: 14 nights
Location: Ireland
Price starting at: $3,097.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type:
Meals: 26; 13 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 10 Dinners    
Meal Options: Low Fat; Vegetarian; Low Salt; Gluten Free    

Discover the magic, myths and modern realities of the Emerald Isle on this comprehensive journey from the dramatic coast and the spectacular Ring of Kerry to the pilgrimage sites of Glencolmcille and the cultural hotbed of Dublin. Scholars and schoolchildren, politicians and musicians offer you “cead mile failte” (a hundred thousand welcomes) and share the best of their country with you.


• Delve into the rich archaeology of the Dingle Peninsula, finding prehistoric and medieval remains in one of the most beautiful places on the planet.
• Experience the sights, sounds, streets and monuments of James Joyce’s Dublin on foot with a Joycean expert.
• Spend a full day on Inis Mor, the largest of the Islands of Aran, where Christian ruins stand side by side with remarkable Pagan relics.

Activity Particulars

Walking up to two miles per day; some uneven, rocky, and hilly terrain and cobblestones.

Date Specific Information

5-8-2014, 3-31-2016, 4-14-2016, 5-5-2016, 5-12-2016, 5-26-2016, 6-2-2016, 6-16-2016, 6-23-2016, 7-7-2016, 8-11-2016, 8-25-2016, 9-1-2016, 9-2-2016, 9-8-2016, 9-9-2016, 9-15-2016, 9-16-2016, 9-22-2016, 9-23-2016, 9-29-2016, 10-6-2016, 10-7-2016, 10-13-2016, 10-14-2016, 10-20-2016

Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.

Itinerary Summary

Arrival Shannon, coach to Killarney, 4 nights; coach to Galway, 3 nights; coach to Killybegs, 2 nights; coach to Dublin, 4 nights; departure.

Overnight flight from the U.S.A.
1 night
Arrival Shannon
Coach to Killarney
4 nights

Enjoy a walk on the beach of Rossbeigh, a natural heritage area, before journeying around the breathtaking Ring of Kerry on the Iveragh Peninsula. Take a gentle hike through Killarney National Park with a local expert then explore Killarney town on your own. Share a traditional home-cooked meal with an Irish family. A field trip reveals the heritage of the Dingle Peninsula, once called the “most beautiful place on earth” by National Geographic Traveler.

Coach to Galway
3 nights

Experience the stunning Cliffs of Moher and walk the otherworldly landscape of the Burren with a local expert. Explore Galway with a historian, making stops at Galway Cathedral, the Spanish Arch and the tiny fishing enclave of the Claddagh. Delight in a private dinner at Glenlo Abbey, part of the ancestral home of two of the fourteen “Tribes of Galway.” A boat excursion to Inis Mor immerses you in authentic Gaelic civilization and offers an opportunity to explore the village of Kilronan.

Coach to Killybegs
2 nights

Make your way through the town of Sligo before stopping at Drumcliffe, the final resting place of the famed poet W. B. Yeats. Learn about life in Killybegs from a member of the local fishing community. Discover the megalithic tombs, cross pillars and breathtaking scenery of Glencolmcille on an expert-led walk and learn a few steps of Irish dancing with a local musician.

Coach to Dublin
4 nights

Visit a local elementary school for a glimpse into education in Ireland. Learn about Irish immigration to America during an afternoon at Ulster American Folk Park. Set out on foot to experience the Dublin of James Joyce with a Joycean scholar. Walk through Trinity College, visit The National Museum of Ireland and enjoy ample time to explore on your own.


In 1801, the Act of Union merged the Kingdom of Ireland with the Kingdom of Great Britain. In the mid-19th century, the Irish experienced terrible famine and crowding that led to a spirited nationalist movement. With the Government of Ireland Act in 1920, five-sixths of the island began independent governance. Northern Ireland voted to remain a part of the United Kingdom, creating an island that today fosters two shared, yet opposite identities.

Killarney: Elegant hotel in the heart of town. Galway: Hotel near the waterfront. Killybegs: Hotel overlooking the harbor. Dublin: Centrally located hotel.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Shane Connolly

A native of the Burren, Shane Connolly has a diploma in archaeology from the National University of Ireland, Galway and a diploma in local and regional studies from University College Cork. He is also qualified with a certificate in agribusiness , a degree in business studies and currently runs a cattle and sheep farm in Corkscrew Hill, Ballyvaughan. An experienced educational excursion leader in the Burren, Shane enjoys good conversation and a laugh. His interests include place names, stone wall construction and folklore.
Peadar O'Dowd

Peadar O’Dowd is a historian dedicated to sharing his love for the heritage of Galway, Ireland, with students and visitors of all ages. A native of Galway, he has lectured on the region’s treasures both in Ireland and in the U.S., and is a columnist for the Connacht Sentinel newspaper and Galway Now magazine. He is the author of several books on Galway and the west of Ireland, including “Old and New Galway,” “Down by the Claddagh,” and “Tracing Your Galway Ancestors.” Now retired from his work as a lecturer at Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology, Peadar is a member of the Galway Archaeological and Historical Society, and is an alumnus of University College, Galway.
Deirdre Ni Chinneide

Deirdre Ni Chinneide is a singer and song-writer who specializes in Celtic singing. She has performed worldwide and sung extensively in Irish and English as a vocalist with bands such as Mo run Searc, Acabella, Ragus and more. Deirdre has also toured the Celtic festival route in Europe and the United States.
Tony O'Callaghan

Tony O’Callaghan is a native of Killybegs , Ireland’s largest fishing port. He witnessed the town’s hard times in the 1950s — when fishing was hit by a fall in demand — as well as a resurgence in the 1960s based on herring fishing. By 1969, Tony served as the fisheries correspondent with a national newspaper, and in 1989, founded the Marine Times newspaper. Since 1992, Tony has been working as a marketing and public relations consultant for many of the region’s fishing companies.
Denis Kissane

For 40 years, Denis Kissane ran a dairy farm on a small hill farm near his home town of Killarney. He retired in 2005 and has since spent his time welcoming visitors to Ireland, serving as a heritage specialist and working with elementary schoolchildren as a participant in the Heritage in Schools program. Denis truly loves his work and is never happier than when he is able to show the beauty of his native Killarney to the visitors of Ireland.
Meals and Lodgings
   International Hotel
  Killarney, Ireland 4 nights
   Harbour Hotel
  Galway, Ireland 3 nights
   Tara Hotel
  Killybegs, Ireland 2 nights
   The Camden Court
  Dublin, Ireland 4 nights
 International Hotel
Type: Hotel
  Description: Town centre hotel, close to the gates of Killarney National Park
  Contact info: Kenmare Place
Co Kerry,   Ireland
phone: +353646631816
  Room amenities: TV, direct dial telephone, hairdryer, tea and coffee facilities, trouser press, ironing boards, room safe
  Facility amenities: Restaurant and bar, residents lounge, snooker room and library.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: . For additional pre and post program accommodations, please contact Road Scholar Travel Services at (800) 241-1404 or via email to
  Check in time: 2:00 PM

 Harbour Hotel
Type: Hotel
  Description: 4 star waterfront hotel a short stroll from the lively bustle of Quay Street and Eyre Square
  Contact info: New Docks Road
Galway,   Ireland
phone: +35391569466
  Room amenities: Tea & coffee making facilities, wireless internet connection, hairdryer, cable TV, direct dial telephone, iron and ironing board, 24 hr room service
  Facility amenities: Restaurant, Bar, conference centre, on site fitness centre with gym, jacuzzi steamroom and spa with beauty treatments available
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Tara Hotel
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: Centrally located modern 3 star hotel, overlooking the fishing port and magnificent Killybegs harbour
  Contact info: Killybegs
Co Donegal,   Ireland
phone: +353749741700
  Room amenities: Tea & Coffee making Facilities, Hairdryer, direct dial telephone, safe (capable of holding a laptop) Broadband (supplement applies) Iron, Ironing Board and trouser press
  Facility amenities: Restaurant, Bar, Conference facilities, Leisure Centre comprising gymnasium, sauna & steamroom and relaxation area.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 The Camden Court
Type: Three-Star Hotel
  Description: Camden Court Hotel, modern 3 star hotel located in Dublin city centre. Located close to Dublin’s main attractions.
  Contact info: Camden Street
Dublin 2,   Ireland
phone: +353 1 4759666
  Room amenities: Multi Channel TV, Internet Wi-FI, Full use of Leisure facilities, Trouser press, Hair Dryer, Complimentary Tea/Coffee Tray.
  Facility amenities: Enjoy modern cuisine in the comfortable and friendly setting of the Iveagh Restaurant. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and serves quality food and wine at excellent value. For a more casual setting, C Central bar offers excellent food, serving your favorite beer, burgers and ribs. With wireless broadband internet access available you can enjoy a quiet drink whilst surfing on the net.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after:  For additional pre and post program accommodations, please contact Road Scholar Travel Services at (800) 241-1404 or via email to
  Check out time: 11:00 AM

Travel Details
  Start of Program:
A transfer will depart from Shannon Airport mid morning. Welcome meeting at 5.00pm You will be staying at International Hotel that night.
  End of Program:
After breakfast on departure day. You will be staying at The Camden Court the night before.
  Required documents:
The Participant Information Form is required.
  Parking availability:
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: Buses available. See
To Start of Program
  Location:  Killarney
  Transportation to site: We generally recommend that independent travelers arrive at Shannon airport at approx 9.00am on the group arrival day, many of the flights arrive at this time and it is the most convenient time to join the main morning transfer to the International hotel in Killarney.
  From End of Program
  Location:  Dublin
  Transportation from site: Group transfer by private motorcoach. For Participants travelling outside of the group departure date: Aircoach offers a service from Dublin city to Dublin Airport. Aircoach and public bus to Dublin airport from the Camden Court hotel - the nearest aircoach stop is Leeson street, about a 10 minute walk from the Camden Court. There is a Bus Eireann regular Dublin bus no. 16 which has a stop right beside the hotel and this goes to the airport.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Daily Schedule

Day 1: Overnight on board plane
(Thursday, May 8)
 In Transit: Overnight flights from North America to Shannon

Day 2: Arrive at Shannon airport, welcome, coach transfer to Killarney and check in to hotel
(Friday, May 9)
 Arrive To: Arrive at Shannon airport and transfer to Killarney by private coach. Southwest county Kerry is home to 14 of Ireland’s highest mountains and some of the last primeval oak and yew forests in Europe. The charming town of Killarney sits nestled beneath these majestic peaks and among its internationally famous lakes.
 Lunch: Excluded
 Afternoon: The afternoon is free before the welcome meeting.
 Dinner: Dinner in hotel dining room
 Evening: At leisure
Accommodations: International Hotel
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 3: Excursion around the Iveragh Penninsula. 'The Ring of Kerry' is made up of spectacular coastal and mountain scenery, enveloping the charming towns of Glenbeigh, Caherciveen, Waterville and Sneem.
(Saturday, May 10)
 Breakfast: A full Irish breakfast is served in the hotel dining room
 Morning: Enjoy a walk on the sandy beach of Rossbeigh which extends into the estuary like a finger, forming a natural barrier to the powers of the Atlantic Ocean and provides a safe haven for all kinds of marine life and seabirds. It is a designated natural heritage area and a Special Area of Conservation.
 Lunch: Lunch in Caherdaniel
 Afternoon: Excursion continues around the 'Ring of Kerry'.
 Dinner: Your choice to sample local fare.
 Evening: Free
Accommodations: International Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 4: Day Trip to the Dingle Pennisula and dinner with local Irish families.
(Sunday, May 11)
 Breakfast: A full Irish breakfast is served in the hotel dining room
 Morning: Field Trip to the Dingle Peninsula exploring this area’s rich archaeological heritage and unique culture. Once cited as ‘the most beautiful place on earth’ by the National Geographic, much of the peninsula is a Gaeltacht, an area where the Irish language is widely spoken in home, workplace & school.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own in the colourful fishing port of Dingle town, the area’s main hub, well known for its eateries and traditional pubs.
 Afternoon: Field trip continues.
 Dinner: Dinner as guests of local families in a nearby town. Learn about the rhythm of daily Irish life while chatting with your hosts and sampling home cooked cuisine.
 Evening: Free
Accommodations: International Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5: Killarney National Park
(Monday, May 12)
 Breakfast: A full Irish breakfast is served in the hotel dining room
 Morning: Walk to Killarney National Park home to magnificent native oak woods and one of the oldest yew woods in Europe. Enjoy an expert - led gentle hike in the Park. Look out for a glimpse of the native Irish red deer along the way.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own to enjoy local fare.
 Afternoon: Your afternoon is free to explore Killarney on your own.
 Dinner: Dinner at the hotel.
 Evening: Free
Accommodations: International Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6: The world famous Cliffs of Moher
(Tuesday, May 13)
 Breakfast: A full Irish breakfast is served in the hotel dining room
 Morning: Depart by private motor coach for a leisurely journey to Galway.
 Lunch: Lunch will be in a coastal village of Co Clare where you will be free to explore local fare
 Afternoon: Join a local expert at the world famous Cliffs of Moher. There will be time to linger by the cliffs which rise like a cathedral in to the sky some 700 feet over the wild Atlantic ocean. The views stretch as far as Galway Bay and the Aran Islands and the location is also home to one of the major colonies of cliff nesting seabirds in Ireland. Back on the coach our local expert will lead us through the Burren. one of the largest karst limestone landscapes in Europe and we will stop for a short hike on the moon like terrain
 Dinner: In hotel dining room
 Evening: Free evening
Accommodations: Harbour Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 7: Expert-led walk of Galway with local historian and writer and evening at the magnificent eighteenth century Glenlo Abbey.
(Wednesday, May 14)
 Breakfast: A full Irish breakfast will be served in the hotel dining room
 Morning: Visit a local primary (elementary) school. Sit in the classroom amongst the local school children, answer their questions whilst learning about school life in Ireland. The children will then put on a short display of traditional Irish music and singing especially for their new friends! Followed by an expert - led walk of Galway with local historian and writer. Learn why Galway is nicknamed the “City of the Tribes.” Explore Galway Cathedral, the Spanish Arch, and part of the original city wall. Walk through Eyre Square and down the cobble stones of Quay Street to the tiny fishing enclave of The Claddagh, immortalised in the song "Galway Bay", and internationalised through its traditional jewelry, the Claddagh Ring, a symbol of love, friendship, commitment and loyalty.
 Lunch: Lunch is free for you to sample local fare in one of Galway’s many restaurants, cafes and traditional Irish pubs.
 Afternoon: Free to explore Galway city independently
 Dinner: Be welcomed by your host, a Galway academic and expert in the field of Anglo-Irish literature, before being led in to dine exclusively in the private Abbey. The Abbey dates back to 1740, and was part of the ancestral home of two of the fourteen 'Tribes of Galway', the famed merchant families who dominated the economic and social life of the city at that time. A sumptuous candle - lit dinner will be served while you enjoy conversation on the topic: “The Irish Big House” and “Galway’s Literary Tradition.”
Accommodations: Harbour Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 8: Boat trip to Inis Mor, the largest of the Aran Islands. Perched in the Atlantic ocean at the entrance to Galway Bay, the Aran Islands are one of the last outcrops of authentic Gaelic civilization.
(Thursday, May 15)
 Breakfast: A full Irish breakfast is served at the hotel.
 Morning: Spend a full day on Inis Mor, the largest of the Islands of Aran, to explore this last remnant of authentic Gaelic civilization, where Christian ruins stand side by side with remarkable Pagan relics. Walk the short distance to the pretty village of Kilronan. From here, explore the island independently on foot, by bicycle, mini van or traditional horse - drawn jaunty car.
 Lunch: Your choice to explore local fare on the island.
 Afternoon: Explore the island independently; by foot, by bicycle, or by traditional horse drawn jaunty cars.
 Dinner: Dinner at hotel
 Evening: Free evening.
Accommodations: Harbour Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 9: Transfer to Killybegs via Sligo and Drumcliffe, the final resting place of the famed Irish poet W. B. Yeats’, under the majestic mountain of Ben Bulben.
(Friday, May 16)
 Breakfast: Full Irish breakfast served at hotel
 Morning: Depart by private motor coach for Killybegs, County Donegal. Undoubtedly one of Ireland's most untouched and ruggedly beautiful counties, County Donegal's striking landscape has remained relatively unaffected by the passage of time. The Donegal people, too are renowned for their warmth and hospitality.
 Lunch: Free time in Sligo town to explore local fare for lunch
 Afternoon: En route from Sligo to Killybegs, make a stop at Drumcliffe, the final resting place of the famed Irish poet W. B. Yeats’, under the majestic mountain of Ben Bulben. The epitaph on his gravestone is well known: "Cast a cold eye / On life / on death / Horseman, pass by!"
 Dinner: Dinner at hotel
 Evening: Free evening.
Accommodations: Tara Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 10: Learn about life in Killybegs, home to Ireland's largest fishing fleet, while walking on the pier. Enjoy dinner at a local seafood restaurant. Visit Glencolmcille, an area of outstanding beauty.
(Saturday, May 17)
 Breakfast: Full Irish breakfast is served at the hotel
 Morning: Spend the morning with a local journalist and community worker. On foot, explore this pretty town - home to the largest fishing fleet in Ireland. Take a walk on the pier to admire the fleet.
 Lunch: Excluded
 Afternoon: Field trip to Glencolmcille. A unique and beautiful place, Glencolmcille, was chosen as a base by St. Columba, one of Ireland's three patron saints, along with Patrick and Brigid. The name Glencolmcille, or "Gleann Cholm Cille" in the Irish language, means "The Glen of St. Columba's Church.". It is not surprising that Glencolmcille is rarely on a standard itinerary of the Irish countryside, you need to be determined to get there!. Though, due to the stark beauty of the landscape, historically it has been drawing visitors for over 1500 years. Take an expert - led walk of the ‘Turas’, a traditional pilgrimage site. This gentle hike comprises of megalithic tombs, cross pillars and breathtaking scenery.
 Dinner: Dinner in a local seafood restaurant.
 Evening: Return to the hotel where you can have the opportunity to meet a local musician and dancer. Learn a few steps of traditional Irish dance and an Irish tune on the tin whistle (penny whistle). Take home your tin whistle as a souvenir of your time in county Donegal!.
Accommodations: Tara Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 11: Transfer by private motor coach from Killybegs to Dublin, via the Ulster American Folk Park.
(Sunday, May 18)
 Breakfast: Full Irish breakfast is served at the hotel
 Morning: Depart Killybegs by private coach for Dublin, via County Tyrone and the Ulster American Folk Park.
 Lunch: Lunch is taken en route to the Ulster American Folk Park.
 Afternoon: Visit the Ulster American Folk Park. This museum tells the poignant story of emigration from Ulster to America in the 18th & 19th centuries. Continue transfer to Dublin. Dublin’s history dates back to the 8th century BC, and is now the Republic of Ireland’s vibrant capital. With its great universities, cathedrals, theatres and its literary legacy, Dublin has been the nucleus of Gaelic Irish and Anglo-Irish cultural tradition since medieval times.
 Dinner: Dinner at the hotel in Dublin.
 Evening: Free evening.
Accommodations: The Camden Court
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: Meet a Literary Scholar and take part in a walking tour of Dublin visiting the places and experiencing the sights and sounds which influenced the literary greats.
(Monday, May 19)
 Breakfast: Full Irish breakfast is served at the hotel
 Morning: Together with a Literature Scholar we will set out on foot to experience the sights, sounds, streets and monuments that form the Dublin which appear in the writings of Joyce. Punctuated by readings, stories and bits of history we will walk in the footsteps of Irish literary giants.
 Lunch: At Dublin’s famous Bewley’s Café on Grafton Street, with a lunchtime theatre performance. Bewley’s café is something of a national institution and has been called "the heart and hearth of Dublin" by poet Brendan Kennelly.
 Afternoon: Free to explore Dublin independently
 Dinner: Your choice to explore local fare from Dublin's many restaurants.
 Evening: Free evening
Accommodations: The Camden Court
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 13: Expertly guided visit of one of Dublin's 'hidden treasures': the Georgian House Museum at 'Number 29'. After our visit, we will walk past the Irish Parliament and visit the National Museum of Ireland for a private tour of the Bronze Age gold collection.
(Tuesday, May 20)
 Breakfast: Full Irish breakfast is served at the hotel
 Morning: Mrs Olivia Beatty, the widow of a prominent Dublin wine merchant set up home at 29 Lower Fitzwilliam Street in Dublin in 1794. This morning we will take a walk through Trinity College and pay a visit to 'Number 29' to experience what life was like for the fortunate who lived in such elegant townhouses, and the less fortunate who worked in them.
 Lunch: Excluded
 Afternoon: Continuing our walk we will pass the Irish Parliament and visit The National Museum of Ireland where we will have a private tour of the renowned collection of Bronze Age goldwork
 Dinner: Your choice to sample the local fare at one of Dublin's many restaurants.
 Evening: Free evening
Accommodations: The Camden Court
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 14: Today is free for you to spend at your leisure in Dublin. Browse the many bookstores, explore the museums, or even try some genealogy research at the National Library of Ireland. Take a day trip to The Hill of Tara, or Newgrange or gossip with the locals.
(Wednesday, May 21)
 Breakfast: Full Irish breakfast is served at the hotel
 Morning: Free time for you to enjoy as you wish; You could take a trip to the Hill of Tara and the megalithic tomb of Newgrange, or visit Glendalough in beautiful county Wicklow. Alternatively you could relax, and sample some of Dublin's cafe culture and vibrant cultural life.
 Lunch: Your choice to explore local fare.
 Afternoon: Free for you to spend as you wish: Browse the many bookstores, explore the museums, or even try some genealogy research at the National Library of Ireland.
 Dinner: Farewell dinner in Dublin city centre
 Evening: Enjoy your last evening in Ireland with an evening of traditional Irish music, song and relaxed banter at one of Dublin’s oldest pubs.
Accommodations: The Camden Court
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 15: After breakfast at the hotel, depart Dublin airport for return flight to the U.S.A.
(Thursday, May 22)
 Breakfast: Full Irish breakfast is served at the hotel.
 Morning: Depart for Dublin airport for return flight to the U.S.A.
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

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To School Through the Fields: An Irish Country Childhood

Author: Alice Taylor

Description: Lyrical reminiscences of growing up Irish, recounted with both wistfulness and wit by a postmistress from Innishannon. Raised on a farm by a quick-tempered father and a cheerfully indulgent mother, Taylor and her six siblings enjoyed a childhood of boundless freedom as the family worked together sowing their fields, nourished themselves with their own crops and livestock, walked miles across verdant hills to and from their two-room schoolhouse, and rode their wagon to Mass in town on Sundays. As befits one whose early years were spent in such close proximity to nature, Taylor's eye is refreshingly unsentimental as she recounts local legends featuring neighbors she knew from birth, including a crone-like skinflint who hoarded her tea cake from hungry callers while allowing the beloved birds in her cottage's thatched roof practically to bring the house down; a bachelor farmer who dressed only in long johns and a long white beard; the dutiful priests who performed Mass in each house in turn, no matter how mean or eccentric its inhabitants; and the schoolteachers who punctuated monotonous sessions of rote memorization with sharp slaps on their pupils' knuckles. Informed with an earthy, childlike sensuality, these stories evoke a time when family life consisted of a procession of joyful celebrations, when neighbors tended to one another's needs as a matter of course, and when nature was a benevolent presence, intimately connected with every soul. A best-seller in Ireland, this slim collection should find a modest niche among country-loving American readers as well. (Kirkus Reviews)

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