Getting on/off a motorcoach; driving about 90 miles, approximately 3 hours. Walking about 3 miles, periods of standing; paved streets, some cobbled areas, gravel and grass paths, some uneven terrain at Coole Park.
In the hotel dining room, we’ll have a full Irish breakfast buffet. Choices vary but will include a variety of eggs, breakfast meats, tomato, potatoes, cereals, fruit, toast, pastries and jams, plus juices, coffee, tea, water.
We’ll board the motorcoach for a field trip to the port city of Galway, the cradle of Gaelic culture in the West. Galway is often referred to as the “city of tribes,” as it was once home to 14 famous merchant families. We’ll enjoy an expert-led walk around the city with a local historian, concluding at the Galway City Museum for some time to explore independently. Should you wish to explore the museum, entrance is free of charge and it houses a variety of permanent and temporary exhibitions dealing with archaeology, local history, arts and crafts.
This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.
We’ll board the motorcoach for a field trip to Coole Park. Now a nature reserve spanning more than 1,000 acres, Coole Park was the center of the Irish literary revival in the early 20th century, as it was the home of Lady Gregory who co-founded the Abbey Theatre with W.B. Yeats. The house that provided hospitality to many who shaped the literary movement is gone, but the seven woods celebrated by Yeats can all be found within its confines. As we walk through the park with our Group Leader, we’ll be able to trace our fingers across the historic Autograph Tree, its bark deeply engraved with the initials of many of the authors who helped Ireland rise to literary prominence during the revival. We will then return by motorcoach to the hotel.
Hotel plated meal.
We’ll be joined at the hotel by members of a local family of musicians, who will regale us with a performance of traditional Irish music. Ennis is widely considered one of the most important heartlands of Irish folk music, and as we enjoy informal conversation with the performers, we’ll gain an understanding of its importance to community life.