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Archive for self-drive holidays in Ireland

July 11, 2018

Breakaway to Ireland’s Ancient East with Irish Ferries

Ireland’s beautiful south-east is a comfortable four-hour cruise from Pembroke on Irish Ferries’ Isle of Inishmore, with the port of Rosslare offering easy access to Counties Wexford, Waterford and Wicklow this summer.

For a short break packed with interest, visit Waterford City (see, which was founded by the Vikings in 914AD. Stroll through the ‘Viking Triangle’ and visit Reginald’s Tower to see original artefacts, view the excellent Medieval Museum and Georgian treasures at the Bishop’s Palace.

The 29-room Athenaeum House Hotel is a great Waterford base, quietly set in gardens running down to the River Suir, with city views. A three-night midweek break this summer costs from £722 per couple when sharing a double room, including a full Irish breakfast each morning, complimentary parking and return ferry travel.

Alternatively, there are family-friendly holiday cottages in seaside resorts like Dunmore East, where a week’s holiday for mum, dad and up to three children under 16 can be enjoyed for a great-value £899 for the weeks starting 18 or 25 August or £985 for the weeks starting 21 or 28 July, 4, 11 and 18 August.

Seacliff holiday cottages are set on the cliff top beside Dunmore East’s golf club and 650 metres from the sandy cove of Counsellors Strand. Each modern holiday home offers open-plan living, an ensuite double, a twin and a single room to sleep five, and there’s an onsite playground.

Seacliff is 90 minutes’ drive from Irish Ferries’ port at Rosslare, using the charming ferry to the River Suir. There are beaches, boat trips and great sightseeing, with Hook Lighthouse across the bay and historic Waterford half an hour’s drive.  08717 300 400

September 25, 2017

Family Ferry Holidays at October Half Term from £454

Families looking for a great value half term holiday will find a self-drive escape with Irish Ferries Holidays hard to beat. A five-night break between 21 and 29 October, including cottage rental and return ferry crossings for the car and all the family, costs from just £454.

That’s in the wooded heart of County Wicklow, where Aughrim Holiday Village is set between the mountains and the sea. Each of the cottages has three en-suite bedrooms, (double, twin and single) so can accommodate a family of five. There’s a comfortable living room and open-plan kitchen-diner and the pretty village centre – with a couple of pubs – is no more than five minutes’ walk away.

Riverside Aughrim is well placed for days out: the beautiful lake at Glendalough is half an hour away, the seaside at Brittas Bay the same. Nearby are horse-riding stables, walking trails and a Paul McGinley designed golf course, while fishing and Gaelic games are popular in Aughrim itself.

Aughrim is about 90 minutes drive from each of Irish Ferries’ ports: Dublin (for ferries from Holyhead) and Rosslare (for ferries from Pembroke).

This is just one of over 30 different locations around Ireland where Irish Ferries offers self-drive cottage holidays, including the West Coast and County Cork.

08717 300 400,


About Irish Ferries

  • Routes: Holyhead to Dublin and Pembroke to Rosslare.
  • Drive times: Holyhead from Liverpool or Manchester 2 hours; from Birmingham 3 hours. Pembroke from Cardiff 2 hours; from Bristol 2 hours 30 minutes.
  • Crossing times: the Dublin Swift is the only ‘fastcraft’ on the Irish Sea and offers the shortest crossing in as little as 1 hour 49 minutes. Ferry Holyhead to Dublin is 3 hours 15 minutes. Ferry Pembroke to Rosslare is 4 hours.
  • Club Class (priority boarding, reserved seating, free refreshments etc) available.
  • Ship-wide free WiFi.


Press and pictures contact Jane Williams at Beacon PR:  01572 748 800

January 23, 2015

Save on Peak Season Cottage Holidays to Ireland

An early booking offer from Irish Ferries Holidays delivers savings of up to £101 on a family holiday this summer, with 10% offered off holiday cottages in 29 of Ireland’s most beautiful coast and country locations.

Bookings must be made – with a deposit of just £50 – by the end of the day on 28 February 2015, and the deal is available on dates right across the year including peak summer holidays.

For example, in a rural setting 20 minutes north of Dublin, Heywards Mews town houses offer four-star accommodation within a short drive of the beautiful beaches of Laytown and Bettystown. With a double, a twin and a single room – all ensuite – each house sleeps five. A bonus is special rates for access to the adjacent Golf & Country Club’s swimming pool and leisure facilities.

A week’s holiday here in peak summer season is reduced from £1010 to £909, saving £101 with the early booking offer. That price includes return cruise-ferry crossings for a car, two adults and three children under 16.

Alternatively on the south shore of Galway Bay, Burren Coast Holiday Cottages offer outstanding value in the west of Ireland. This little holiday village is a few minutes’ walk from Ballyvaughan’s cafes and pubs, and there’s easy access to fabulous beaches, and the amazing rock-formations of The Burren.

Each cottage here has two double bedrooms to sleep four: perfect for families with young children. In August peak, a week is just £653 if booked before 28 February, including cruise-ferry travel from the UK in the family car. Two weeks in August costs only £921 with the 10% discount, and a week at Easter is just £384 in total.

Many of Irish Ferries Holidays’ cottages welcome the family pet at no extra charge (pet passport required), and many offer a second week completely free outside of high season.

Irish Ferries Holidays features holiday cottages in 29 locations from County Sligo in the far north-west to County Wicklow in the sunny south-east.

08717 300 400,





October 1, 2014

Wild Atlantic Way itinerary for Autumn Holiday with Irish Ferries

Irish Ferries has created a ten-day touring holiday along the south-west section of the Wild Atlantic Way, with prices from £434 per person including ferry travel.

“This is a great time of year to discover Ireland’s new scenic drive, combining dramatic seascapes with autumn colour,” says Irish Ferries head of passenger sales Dermot Merrigan.

This ten-day tour is one of four sample itineraries featured on its specially-created Wild Atlantic Way microsite:

Image courtesy Tourism Ireland

Image courtesy Tourism Ireland

The holiday starts with a day-time ferry crossing from Holyhead into Dublin, or Pembroke into Rosslare and an overnight in a local hotel before driving to County Kerry’s Parknasilla Resort & Spa for a three-night stay.

This is a great spot from which to explore the Dingle peninsula, the Blasket Islands and amazing beaches such as Rossbeigh’s seven mile stretch. A short drive inland through the mountains brings travellers to the woods and lakes of the Killarney National Park.

Moving on to Bantry Bay in County Cork, the Eccles Hotel in Glengarriff is an ideal base (three nights) from which to discover Dursey Island – reached by Ireland’s only cable car – and Mizen Head, where the Fastnet lighthouse guards the treacherous Atlantic approaches.

A night beside the sea at the Garryvoe Hotel in Castlemartyr before checking out Cork City, and a final night back in Wexford (or Dublin) before catching the ferry home completes a package that includes return ferry crossings for a car and nine nights’ bed and breakfast accommodation at hotels. The price is per person based on two sharing.


November 19, 2012

Christmas in an Irish Castle for £569

An Irish Castle with views over Dublin Bay, hearty ‘full Irish’ breakfasts each morning, Christmas meals and winter walks is specially packaged by Irish Ferries Holidays.

A self-drive break at the Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel, starting 23 or 24 December, costs from £569 per person (£1138 per couple).  This includes the ferry to Ireland from Holyhead to Dublin, just half an hour’s drive from the hotel. The package provides:

  • Four nights in a double/twin room
  • Mulled wine and mince pies
  • Carol Singing
  • Christmas Eve Dinner
  • Champagne reception
  • Christmas Day Lunch
  • St Stephen’s night dinner
  • Breakfast every morning
  • Return ferry crossings for a car and two people

The hotel dates to the 18th century and greets arrivals with mock-Gothic towers and turrets, all set in mature grounds above Dublin Bay and a short walk from the fashionable seaside village of Dalkey.

Fitzpatricks Castle Hotel. Image courtesy of Irish Ferries Holidays

Welcoming public rooms echo the castle’s history, from the Library Bar to PJ’s Restaurant, which boasts an AA Rosette.  The 113 four-star bedrooms are traditionally styled and the hotel’s Leisure Club boasts a 20 metre indoor pool.

Christmas calories can be walked off on Killiney and Sandycove beaches (visit the James Joyce Tower), or in the Wicklow Mountains only half an hour’s drive south. From Dalkey it is only 20 minutes by DART train into Dublin city centre for shopping or sightseeing.

Additional nights’ bed and breakfast before or after Christmas cost from £57 per person.  The last ferry to Ireland from Holyhead is at 1410hrs on 24 December and sailings resume on 27 December.

For a Christmas break with a warm Irish welcome, call 08717 300 400 or visit





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