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Review Highlights
You can't go wrong with Vagabond!

My husband and I booked the 11 Day Ireland Driftwood tour that covered the entire Island in a... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
spocklover
Definitely recommend

Best tour of my life❤️❤️🇮🇪 I fell in love with Ireland and it is all because of the beautiful... read more

Reviewed 3 days ago
Mlajpop
via mobile
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Reviewed 4 August 2018

My wife, 16 year old son and I just returned from a Vagabond Wild Irish Rover 8 day tour, which ran July 22- July 29. There aren't enough superlatives in English with which I can praise this experience. It was the best trip I have ever taken, superb in every respect. I would echo earlier comments written by other travelers. The locations we were taken to were breath takingly beautiful, the whole tour was superbly organized and ran like a Swiss watch, the accommodations were excellent, the pubs/restaurants outstanding. Our guide, John, was simply outstanding in every respect: personable, well organized and with encyclopedic knowledge of all things Irish. We were doubly blessed to have another new Vagabond employee, Derry, take the tour with us. He was like another guide for us, and like John, so generous with his knowledge and perspectives. Both men exhibited the wit, humor and grace for which the Irish are so well known. Such great ambassadors for their country and company, class acts both. I will always consider them friends, as I will the other couple on our trip, who were a lot of fun and a joy to be with.

First, this ain't your grandparents' trip to Ireland. The Vagabond tours give you the chance to get out and get close to Ireland's beauty, through hikes, a bike trek and even a kayak excursion. You don't feel like a total couch potato. The trip is energizing.

Our 13 passenger vehicle was comfortable, immaculate, rugged, and able to go where the tour buses could not. A cancellation meant there were only 5 of us on the tour, plus John and Derry, for a total of 7.

At each stop, all our rooms, or tables, were waiting for us, there was never any confusion or waiting at any stop.

As advertised, the trip takes you off the beaten path. We went down rural roads to see stunning vistas, which we never would have been able to find had we attempted this on our own. Having a local expert take you to these places made all the difference...I am so glad we didn't try to do this ourselves, because we didn't waste time trying to find our own way around.

Most of all, it felt, time and again, like we had Ireland to our own small little group. At almost every stop we were the only tour group present. You'd find yourself in a remote valley, a crystal brook murmuring beneath you, the silence broken only by the bleating of sheep on the steep mountainsides rising around you, totally unspoiled and appearing as they did centuries ago. For me, as an Irish-American, this bordered on a religious experience. This trip takes you to the real Ireland, the experience is totally authentic, not gimmicky or touristy. It was exactly what I was looking for.

Near the end of our trip we visited the Cliffs of Moher. We were dropped off about 90 minutes south of the visitors center, and walked north towards it, while John took the van up to the visitors center and walked from there to meet us. We had the Cliffs to ourselves most of the way on an utterly spectacular day. It wasn't until we were almost at the end of our walk, and saw the dozens of tour buses and legions of tourists walking towards us, that I fully realized how totally absent the crowds and massive buses had been from our week and how singularly different our experience was from those tourists on the big bus tours.

We travelled with our 16 year old son. When booking the trip the office staff was honest with us and said in a number of cases, he would likely sleep on a roll away bed of some type, which we weren't going to subject him to given he is 6 feet tall and not suited to children's arrangements, so we got another room for him. In every case but one, the hotels made sure his room was next to our own, which we really appreciated. Having an active tour such as this made this trip much more enjoyable for him. I definitely think this trip is the way to go with a teen. John, Derry and our fellow travelers treated him so well, we truly felt like a big family.

One of my favorite observations in life is fools know the cost of everything and the value of nothing. We derived enormous value from this trip and felt it was worth every cent and are already contemplating another visit in the future. I can't recommend this trip highly enough.

Date of experience: July 2018
4  Thank FrankUSA2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vagaboss, Owner at Vagabond Tours, responded to this reviewResponded 13 August 2018

Hello FrankUSA2018, thank you for taking the time to write such a detailed and lovely review of your Vagabond 8 Day Wild Irish Rover Tour. At Vagabond we really do want to go off the beaten track as much as possible while still showcasing the iconic sites of Ireland. The great thing about being a genuinely small group tour is you really can avoid the crowds, hiking into the Cliffs is such a special experience, delighted you got to enjoy it. We get a good few families on our tours and our guides are super at catering for their needs too, its great to be outdoors, enjoying nature and activities together. We hope to see you again in the not so distant future. Rob Rankin, Owner.

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Reviewed 3 August 2018

I went on the 6-day Ancient Ireland tour, which is a Driftwood Tour. Driftwood is the branch of Vagabond with "gentler" tours. I went with a good friend. Neither of us had ever been on a tour of this type before, meaning a guided tour on a bus for a prolonged time. We had taken 1/2 day walking tours and full-day tours with a private guide, but never had committed to a full week.

This tour was jam-packed with activities, but it didn't feel like it. Although we saw many sites, we felt relaxed at the end of every day. That's because the tour guide was fabulous and knew just what we would like to do and how much we could tolerate.

The 6-day Ancient Ireland tour was packed with history, and of course with beautiful green scenery. The hotels were all wonderful, and they all had hair dryers and irons. The tour included a full breakfast at the hotel every day, and all were delicious. Lunch and dinner were extra, and I liked that because we could eat with the group, or we could choose to go on our own.

I can't say enough wonderful things about our guide, Cira (pronounced "Keera"). She was fun, funny, charming, knowledgeable, and a good driver. Everyone on the tour was crazy about her.

Date of experience: July 2018
Thank Linda F
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vagaboss, Owner at Vagabond Tours, responded to this reviewResponded 13 August 2018

Hello Linda, thank you for reviewing our 6 Day Ancient Ireland Tour, this is one of our newer ones so its super to hear that you enjoyed it so much. You are right, Driftwood Tours are the more relaxed, slower paced tours. We have our Vagabond Cultural Adventure tours also for those looking for a more active, fast paced tour. Ciara, is a super Vagaguide and we are very lucky to have her on our team. We hope to see you again one day on another Driftwood Tour. Kind regards, Rob Rankin, Owner.

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Reviewed 30 July 2018 via mobile

Wow. I vannot say enough about how amazing the 7 day Driftwood tour was! The route included a perfect combination of "standard" tourist sites and towns, but leaned toward off-the-beaten-path gems. There were a thousand and one breathtaking views, amazing food/pubs/holes-in-the-wall, unique hotels, music, and lots of history. Much of this is because out guide Behbinn was AH-MA-ZING! Her knowledge of the history of Ireland and the sites and areas in which we were driving was nothing short of impressivie, but her personal stories and laid back personalities really made for a great experience. She's a treasure! Book your tour now!!!

Date of experience: July 2018
Thank Derek E
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vagaboss, Owner at Vagabond Tours, responded to this reviewResponded 3 August 2018

Hello Derek E, at Vagabond Tours we really do try and blend off the beaten track hidden gems while seeing all the big hitter sights in Ireland that everyone knows. You are so right, Behbinn is AMAZING. Ireland's roads can be a bit daunting so letting Vagabond take care of things is a good plan. Thank you for your review. Rob Rankin, Owner.

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Reviewed 30 July 2018

We had a private tour w/ 13 family members and had a wonderful time. Our driver was Russ and he was awesome (the bomb!!). Russ did a great job of tweaking the itinerary to match our pace and to hit a couple of items that were not on the original plan. Mostly, though, we followed the standard itinerary and it was great. The lodging ranged from very good to outstanding. The meals were delicious. And the attractions, especially as we were a much smaller vehicle than the "standard" tour bus, were fantastic. Having optional add-ons worked really well as the more active and adventurous were accommodated as well as those who wanted to move at a slower pace. The Barrett family's journey on the Russ Bus was an unforgettable experience, we would definitely do a Vagabond tour again!

Date of experience: July 2018
1  Thank bosoxtom
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vagaboss, Owner at Vagabond Tours, responded to this reviewResponded 3 August 2018

Hello bosoxtom, sounds like the Russ Bus was good fun for you and your family, great to hear. We look forward to welcoming you back on another tour in the not so distant future, Kind regards, Rob Rankin, Owner.

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Reviewed 28 July 2018

I chose this tour because I wanted to sit back and let someone else do the driving AND because I wanted a small group to travel with! We traveled in a new BMW van that was roomy and comfortable, where each seat truly did have a view! Don't worry about not having a bathroom on board like big buses! There were plenty of stops to accommodate that! Our tour guide, Mark, was attentive and funny and so knowledgeable! He made us laugh every single day and his love of Ireland was contagious! He also sang to us! Several times!! :) So many details of this trip were handled by Mark and Vagabond/Driftwood which made it so easy to relax and focus on simply having fun. Our accommodations were wonderful! We even stayed in a castle one night! There was plenty of free time to go shop and visit pubs, listen to traditional music, see traditional dance. One night we were treated to a small dance recital by school children who showed off their amazing dances. I am sure that would not have been something even on my radar had I tried to book a trip without a tour!! While I loved so many things about the trip, I must say our last night in Gougane Barra was by far my favorite. Such a beautiful and peaceful place. If you are looking for peace, it's right there!! On our last day of the tour there were hugs and tears and new friendships formed with everyone on our tour. Driftwood, thank you for far exceeding any expectations I had for this trip! Thank you, Mark, for sharing your love of Ireland with all of us. YOU made this trip the best ever!!

Date of experience: July 2018
3  Thank abeckmaness
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vagaboss, Owner at Vagabond Tours, responded to this reviewResponded 3 August 2018

Hello abeckmaness, here at Vagabond, each and everyone of us truly love Ireland, this little island is very special indeed. We love showing guests around and hopefully sharing our love of Ireland with you. Gougane is for sure a very special place, there is nothing like driving up the road and the valley appearing before you! Mark is an excellent Vagaguide and we are very lucky to have him working with us. Thank you for the review - see you again one day, Rob Rankin, Owner.

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