The Spirit of Ireland Retreat!
Beginning September 4th and
ending September 16th 2019
You are never too old to set another goal or dream another dream.
~ C.S. Lewis
When planning a travel retreat, my goal is to combine the beauty of discovering another country, along with the power of self-discovery and personal growth.
Each woman who attends will experience the power of journaling, group discussion, and individual exercises. Along with meditation and mindfulness, all of these practices will enhance the journey. The combination will awaken your spirit and add deeper meaning to your life!
And, Ireland has so much to offer!
Your adventure will begin the moment you step off the plane at the Shannon International Airport, located in County Clare, Ireland.
Once your luggage is in-hand, you will take a 10-minute taxi shuttle to the quaint village of Bunratty. After settling into the Bunratty Castle Hotel, which will be our home for the evening, we will gather together to get acquainted, before we head to our evening festivities.
The evening’s celebration will begin at the Bunratty Medieval Castle Banquet, where we will be welcomed with an Irish tune, performed by a kilted piper. We will ascend the Castle steps, crossing over the drawbridge into an evening of authentic Irish cuisine, lively music, with great entertainment. It will be a fun-filled evening and the perfect beginning to our Ireland adventure!
The next morning, we will gather for a delicious Irish breakfast, then off to explore the 15th century Bunratty Castle, which is the most authentic medieval castle in Ireland.
After a tour of 15th and 16th-century furnishings, tapestries, and works of art, we will head next door to the Bunratty Folk Park. The park is a reconstruction of the homes and environment of Ireland over a century ago, with village streets, a fairy village, and a walled garden, all set upon 26 impressive acres.
After a day of glorious fun and getting to know one another, we will travel to Doolin, County Clare, which will be our home for the next 5 nights.
Doolin, situated on the Wild Atlantic Way, is a colorful and inviting village. It is within easy reach of the majestic Cliffs of Moher and the unique Aran islands. Doolin is the home to traditional Irish music, breathtaking landscapes, and some of the most welcoming people in County Clare.
We will spend our days in self-discovery, as we take daily walks along the magnificent cliffs, breathing in the crisp, salty Atlantic air. We will also take a 4-hour guided walk, ride the ferry to one of the Aran Islands, and visit the Doolin Cave and Nature Trail.
We will be staying at one of the villages’ idyllic B & B’s, which will offer our group the space and comfort, to relax after a day out exploring. With the opportunity to put our feet up, sip a cup of tea, and explore our inner desires. Our evenings will be spent enjoying the lively entertainment of one of the local pubs, along with an authentic Irish meal. We will even spend the evening with a famous flute player!
Here are a few of the highlights being offered...
A visit to the Cliffs of Moher, would not be complete, without joining Pat Sweeney, on a guided walk along the sea cliffs from Doolin to the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Centre. With the green fields of the local farmers on one side and the pounding wave of the Atlantic Ocean on the other, our senses will be awakened, while our spirits soar!
The 4-hour trail is not a difficult walk, "but it does require a basic level of fitness and a good head for heights." The walk ends at the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Centre, where we can visit the expansive craft shop, get a bite to eat, and take the bus back to our home. *If for any reason, you feel uncomfortable taking the trail walk, you can simply decide to miss it and meet up with the group at the end.
Our days will be spent taking a ferry to the Aran Island of Inis Oirr. Inis Oirr (Inisheer), is the smallest of the Aran islands and only a 30-minute ride from Doolin harbor. The island is recognized for a warm and outgoing spirit, that delights in the company of all who visit.
We will explore the island’s rugged landscape with horse-drawn carts, which afford the perfect pace and allow our eyes to fully take in this raw, elegant land. We will have lunch at one of the small cafes, before returning to the ferry, enjoying a trip under the cliffs before returning to the Doolin harbor.
The Doolin Cave and Farmland Nature Trail will take us walking through the lush countryside, where we will encounter a variety of farm animals, along with beautiful views of the glacial valley. The nature trail also has magnificent views of the surrounding Doolin and Burren landscape.
The cave itself holds “The Great Stalactite,” which is considered one of the largest in the world. We will lunch at the Cave Café, then head to the gift shop, to see Doolin Cave pottery, made by local artist, Caireann Browne. Each piece is made from the glacial clay found deep with the Doolin Cave.
Our nights in Doolin will be spent
enjoying pub dinners and authentic Irish music.
We will head to the house of World Famous Trad Musician, Christy Barry. He and his wife, Sheila, will welcome us into their home to sip wine, sample local cheeses with smoked salmon, as we listen to the legendary flute player, play the tunes that made him famous. It will be a night to remember!
After bidding a farewell to our stay in Doolin and the beauty of the cliffs, we will head to Galway City, where we will spend the day exploring the richness of this city steeped in history.
We will observe remnants of the medieval town walls that lie between the shops, as we stroll down the long promenade that leads to the seaside of Galway Bay. We will tour Eyre Square, also known as John F. Kennedy Memorial Park.
The Galway Cathedral is a must to see, with its' awesome and inspiring stained glass windows and renaissance design.
Lively Quay Street offers a variety of specialty shops, restaurants to meet any appetite, and of course, traditional Irish street music.
After a full day of all that Galway has to offer, we are off to bed to begin our adventure in the capital city of Dublin.
The train to Dublin takes 2.5 hours and offers beautiful views of the Irish countryside.
Once in Dublin, we will be staying at one of the beautiful hotels, located near the city center, where the heart and life of Dublin begins!
We will lunch at Stephen's Green, while we continue our retreat activities.
After spending time getting a taste of the city, we will be off to the theatre, to enjoy the spectacular performance of Riverdance!
Riverdance will be a great beginning
to our 4 night stay in Dublin.
Along with a walking tour of Trinity College and Library, Book of Kells, and St. Patrick’s Cathedral, we will take the Hop On/Off bus to enjoy any sites that we want to visit in the city. We will visit the Temple Bar neighborhood, as well as, the Grafton Street, for great shopping and people watching.
A trip to Dublin is not complete without a tour of the Guinness Factory, learning the history of the Guinness Family and enjoying a pint of their famous brew.
Upon our return, we will head to The Brazenhead, the oldest pub in Ireland, dating back to 1198. This will be our farewell dinner, which will include amazing food, great music, folklore, and fairies! A final night to celebrate new friends, a rewarding retreat, and a vacation filled with memories to last a lifetime!
After, 11 days spent enjoying the spirit of Ireland, it is time to say goodbye to new friends and head to the Dublin International Airport...until we meet again!
The trip is 13 days
(with 2 of the days being travel days)
Please Note: We will be walking an average 5 miles per day, on cobblestone streets and unpaved trails.
What is included:
- All accommodations (based on double-occupancy) *Single supplement is $950
- All breakfasts for 11 mornings.
- All dinners for 11 nights.
- All entry fees to all scheduled activities, tours, and theater.
- Bus, train, and taxi fares.
What is not included:
- Airfare to and from Ireland.
- Travel Insurance (You must purchase travel insurance to attend this retreat - I will provide a list of options)
- Taxi service to and from the airport.
- All lunches
- All snacks and beverages that are not part of breakfast or dinner.
- Any souvenirs or gifts that you purchase along the way.
Cost of trip: $3,250.00
- This retreat is limited to 6 women
- The 1st payment of $1,625.00 is due upon registration. $500 of this amount is non-refundable.
- The balance of $1,625.00 is due by May 1, 2019
- There are no refunds given for this retreat after June 1, 2019
- Please fill out a registration form before purchasing this retreat, so I have the information to be in contact with you.
- Be sure and read my registration policies.