€403 - €494
Friends & Family groups
Suggested start time:
- Discover every important site in Dublin city centre
- Your own personally guided tour of the National Museum (or the Old Library of Trinity College, which hosts the Book of Kells)
- Learn about over 2,000 years of Ireland’s history & culture
- Feel the character and spirit of the Irish people
- Spend the day with a charming Irish person
What to expect on this tour
- Customizable – the guide will change the itinerary to go where you want to go
- Pacing – we’ll take a break (coffee/beer/meal) every 80-90mins
- Exercise – Dublin is a very compact city so we will NOT be covering vast distances
Communication forms – the guide will use a display folder full of photos, maps, etc. and might also sing or act
- Variety – the right mix of fun, culture and history to suit you!
- Private – no one else will be joining your group, ever.
- Professional, well-travelled, clear-spoken and personable Irish tour guide who is specialised in giving private tours and therefore is able to talk AND listen
- Lifetime memories – create wonderful and lasting memories
The perfect exploration of Dublin personalised for you, involving a visit to the National Museum, most of the sites of the city and two breaks.
An inspiring exploration of Dublin’s history from Irish bridge, to Viking town, and from colonisation to Independence. For those who seek a deeper understanding of and connection with Ireland. Our most popular tour will bring you on an emotional and memorable journey into the core of who the Irish are.
We’ll walk a nice loop of the city centre, taking in every main site (as well as many minor ones) in Dublin. We will gain entry to one of Dublin’s most important cultural institutions (either the Old Library of Trinity which hosts the Book of Kells, or the National Museum). We won’t race to try to see everything, rather we’ll take our time so that we can fully experience the significance of each site. As this is a private tour, you can decide what you’d prefer to see, and the experience will be more like a conversation with an old friend rather than a presentation by an academic. Your personable and professional guide will regale you with the fascinating history and culture of Dublin and Ireland.
You’ll be kept energised and engaged throughout the five hours thanks to the enthusiasm of the guide, the wide variety of the topics discussed, as well as a break for coffee and another one for a meal to nicely punctuate the tour.
By the end of the tour, you will have learned what’s the deal with Northern Ireland, how Brexit affects Ireland, how to say something in the Irish language (and the cultural importance of that language), how the Irish won independence, as well as what life is like in Dublin and Ireland today, and what lies ahead for this humble nation. So, you will have learned so much, yet felt even more: the pain and legacy of the Great Famine, the defiant perseverance of the Irish people against British rule, that Ireland has become your second home, and the levity and humour with which the Irish enjoy life.
Most importantly, though, the amazing day you have just spent laughing and learning with your new Irish friend will become wonderful memories that you will appreciate for years to come.
A crucially important site for the history of Ireland, especially since 1204 when the castle was built. From 1204 until 1922, it was the centre of British rule in Ireland and had therefore a reputation of oppression and violence. Since the keys of the castle were metaphorically AND literally handed off to the Irish in 1922, it has experienced a complete change in the minds of the Irish people. The Irish President is inaugurated here, dignitaries are welcomed and referendum results are announced here, making it into a place where, although history is still being made, the changes are positive and are creating a better Ireland.
We will not be venturing inside, but thankfully we are free to explore the grounds – the lower and upper courtyards and the Dubh Linn gardens – which is fully satisfying.
Although a wooden church was built here in ca. 1030, and there was likely a pagan shrine before that, Christchurch as a stone structure began in the 1180s and has been restored and changed numerous times since. The neo-gothic architecture makes Christchurch, arguably, Dublin’s most beautiful complex. The vast crypt underneath the cathedral deserves particular attention for its size, interesting curious and the fact that it hosted a pub, distillery and… brothel (!) in the 18th century.
Started in 1592 as a university only for Protestants, Trinity remained an institution of resentment for Ireland’s Catholic majority up until at least 1970. Throughout the centuries, this fine university nurtured such aspiring students as Oscar Wilde, Jonathan Swift, Bram Stoker and Samuel Beckett, the greatest playwright of the 20th century.
A remarkable building that really gives you a sense of how wealthy Dublin was at the end of the 18th century. Often there are events taking place inside, which would preclude us from entering, but if there are not we can explore the fantastic frescoes and gold-leaf design on the rotunda.
The Ha’Penny Bridge
Built in 1816, the beautiful white cast iron bridge straddles the River Liffey. It serves as the gateway to the charming Temple Bar quarter with its narrow cobbled streets. We’ll cross over it to look up and down the river. On the north side, there’s a great opportunity for a photo.
General Post Office (G.P.O.) (O’Connell St)
It was outside this impressive building on Easter Monday when Padraig Pearse read the Declaration of Irish Independence and he, together with his 1600 comrades, led a rebellion that shook an empire. The most under-rated site in Dublin for tourists, the GPO retains all its historical potency for Dubliners and Irish people, but most tourists never learn why this should be on their top 5 list of sites to visit.
We’ll be able to stand at what was the front entrance where the proclamation was read and, possibly, venture inside to admire it’s reconstructed antique interior as well as soak up the significance of what happened on this spot and what it means to Irish people today.
Daniel O’Connell Statue (O’Connell St)
Daniel O’Connell was arguably the first man to prove to the masses that civil disobedience and peaceful resistance could be effective. A huge hero for Irish people, having secured Catholic Emancipation, he’s nick-named ‘The Liberator’ and the main street of our capital city is justifiably named after him.
We’ll explore the intricate notes of symbolism on this brilliant monument.
Old Parliament Building
Dublin was the 2nd city of the British Empire in the 18th century, and we have the subtle patriotism of the Irish-born politicians of the institution to thank. Today, Dublin’s architectural landscape is ornamented by an abundance of buildings from this period, making it look much older than Paris and London. What is now known as ‘The Bank of Ireland building’ was grand enough to serve as the architectural inspiration for the monumental British Museum in London.
This building is located in College Green, which could be regarded as the centre of the city. The entrance to Trinity College is adjacent as is famous Grafton Street.
Leinster House – Dáil Eireann – Irish Parliament
What was once the town house of the Fitzgerald family from the 1740s has, since 1922, hosted the Irish Parliament (Dáil Eireann). Much like the Old Parliament building, this parliament building also became an architectural inspiration. Its facade, as well as the floor plan for its 1st and 2nd floors, were used as blueprints for the design of the White House.
Naturally, we’ll only be able to view it from the gate, which, thankfully, gives us a more-or-less unobstructed view of the front facade.
Dublin’s heyday was from 1729 to 1800, which roughly coincides with the reign of Kings George I to III. In the subsequent 19th century, however, money and influence abandoned Dublin. As a result, instead of constructing new buildings, the cash-strapped populace resorted to maintaining many of the fine Georgian buildings. Thanks to these circumstances, Dublin today is architecturally older than London.
Georgian architecture is characterised by symmetry, elegance and restraint (in contrast to Baroque or Rococo). The state buildings normally have neoclassical elements such as columns whereas the residential buildings have red-brick facades with famously colourful doors to distinguish them from each other.
Don’t let the brands and blatant consumerism fool you, Grafton still has its charm. In fact, Grafton street is one of the last bastions of old Dublin left. Admire the flower ladies, enjoy the buskers (street musicians) as you head towards Bewleys Café, Ireland’s oldest and biggest café, built in 1927.
Saint Stephen’s Green
Gifted to the city in 1880 by a member of the Guinness family, Stephen’s Green remains much-appreciated by Dubliners today – it’s probably their favourite piece of the city. We’ll stroll through the lush verdure along the curved Victorian walkways and keep our eyes peeled for that most-rare of animals – an Irish person sunbathing!
Wolfe Tone Statue (St. Stephen’s Green)
Wolfe Tone led the rebel of 1798, which sought to free Ireland of its political, cultural and martial chains to Britain as well as introduce equal rights for Catholics, Protestants and Dissenters. Although the rebellion failed, it, and he, would become the inspiration for generations of Irish men and women to stand up against oppression, to this very day.
Find out how it came into existence and discuss the potential for it to dissolve and result in a united Ireland. We’ll be chatting about this when we’re inside siting down during one of our breaks.
The Irish Language
If the English language is a language of prose, then the Irish language is a language of poetry. An incredibly fascinating language – you’ll learn how to say ‘cheers’ in Irish. And hopefully get to properly practice it too, should we stop by a pub. Regardless, we’ll be chatting about this when we’re inside sitting down during one of our breaks.
- Entry or admission fee
- Tip or gratuity
- Food & drinks
- The Book of Kells exhibition will be closed for 3 years for renovations. Please check their website for an update on the dates affected
- The National Museum of History and Archaeology is open from 1-5pm on Sundays and Mondays. Otherwise, 10am-5pm.
- COVID 19 – We abide by current governmental safety guidelines. We suggest you read about Ireland’s current COVID updates on the Citizens Information website
- Accessible for those with limited mobility, limited eyesight, wheelchairs, stroller/pram.
- Make sure to bring comfortable walking shoes.
- Weather – Check the weather before the tour to determine if you’ll need a lightweight raincoat or not.
- Further details available once you click into our booking engine linked by a button called ‘Check availability’ or ‘Book’
Complementary tour – If you book this tour, we recommend booking driving tours outside of the city, Pub Tour, Food Tour Crafts & Design
- 15+ days before : Free postponement or 80% refund (we retain 20% to cover admin costs)
- 14-8 days before : 50% refund
- 7-0 days before : 0% refund
- All cancellations must be discussed via email or phone. Booking fees are non-refundable. For more info, see our T&Cs
“They may forget what you said…but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
Carl W. Buehner
Over 10,000 happy customers
Don’t just take our word for it. Read our reviews below.
An Excellent Guide!
“… an excellent guide! He knows his city and the history of his country and explains it in a super interesting and memorable way. We spent 5 hours walking around the city and the time flew by! Best decision that we made was to take this tour.”
Linda, Oct ’19
“We have used tour guides, local ones, on many adventures but we have never had a guide as wonderful as Garvan who showed us places, told us stories, sang, recited and explored one of a kind experiences in Dublin. Hands down he is one of the top three tour guides we have ever used in close to 30 years of traveling. He designed a custom tour for us which started at the Dublin Library and ended at the post office with a combination of site seeing, experiencing special commemorative events at the City Hall, the singing of “Molly Malone” and recitations of poetry by Yeats (Song of the Wandering Aengus). If we could clone him and use him in every city we would. It was an invigorating, emotion filled, curiosity satisfying foray into Irish culture through food, history, song, poetry and places. We will never forget Garvan and hope that one day we will have the honor, and it was indeed an honor, of going on another tour with him as our guide.”
David B., LA, Aug ’15
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