"With all sincerity, Mick's tours have changed my life. What I'd tell anyone is plain and simple: Mick Moloney's Irish Cultural Tours have given me memories and friends that will last a lifetime." - Larry McCloskey
Into the West
May 12 - May 21, 2017
You'll begin your journey in Killarney traveling from Shannon via the picturesque towns of Adare, Rathkeale, and Abbeyfeale. You'll stay at the 5 Star Aghadoe Heights Hotel on the shore of Lough Lein, overlooking the mythical hills named for the goddess Danu. The stunningly beautiful Atlantic shoreline will be your vista as we travel along the Dingle Peninsula, a landscape layered with antiquities.
You'll visit the Blasket Heritage Center on the tip of the peninsula and explore the remarkable history of the Blasket Islanders and the rich repository of their native culture. You'll stop at Kilmakeder Church with its ogham and alphabet stones, sundial and Romanesque architecture, Riasc, famed for its standing stones and the perfectly preserved 10th century Gallorus Oratory. You'll travel up the west coast of Ireland to the great Viking city of Limerick, with stops at the renowned Hunt Museum, St. Mary's Cathedral, and the University of Limerick's World Academy of Music and Dance. In Clare, you'll stay at the beautiful Old Ground Hotel in Ennis and visit the famed Cliffs of Moher, St. Brigid's Holy Well, the fishing village of Doolin, the Burren, the Poulnabroune Dolmen and the extraordinary high cross at Dysert.
Your next coastal destination will be Renvyle in Connemara where you will stay at the Renvyle House Hotel famed for its haute cuisine. Along the way you'll explore many aspects of Irish history and culture with visits to Coole Park and Kilmacdough Round Tower and the renaissance city of Galway. You'll take a ferry to Inishmore and spend a day on the largest of the storied Aran Islands. You'll make your way through County Galway and Mayo and visit the Irish Famine Museum in Strokestown, Roscommon.
You'll explore Sligo and its stunning Stone Age cemetery, Carrowmore, as well as Drumcliff and the grave of W. B. Yeats at the foot of Ben Bulben. You'll spend time in the lakelands of Leitrim and have the rare opportunity to visit places steeped in the history of the 17th century Irish blind piper, Turlough O'Carolan and the gifted 20th century flute player, John McKenna. Each evening is brought to a close with exhilarating private concerts and sessions featuring Mick and outstanding traditional musicians, singers and dancers from all over the country.
"Mick Moloney has invented a bus tour for people who hate bus tours, elevating this hackneyed form of travel to untold heights of spontaneity and hilarity. You are taken to fine hotels and fed the best of Ireland's nouvelle cuisine. Then you are carefully exposed to fiddle tunes, Bronze Age dolmens and stone circles, immigration, rebel and famine songs, set dancing lessons, Irish history, politics, cultural geography, folk beliefs and mythology. You are enlightened and entertained by your tour guide, the folklorist, banjo player, wit and raconteur, and his handpicked team of local specialists. You feel you've crammed a whole lifetime into one week." - Nancy Lyon, Irish America Magazine