What to Expect on an EF Ultimate Break Tour – The Grand Tour of Ireland

Disclaimer: This post might contain affiliate links, which means we get a small commission if you make a purchase (at no extra cost to you).

In this post, we’re going over what it’s really like to travel with EF Ultimate Break with a detailed breakdown of the EF Ultimate Break Grand Tour of Ireland! We wanted to give you a detailed look at what an EF Ultimate break tour includes. Sometimes it can be hard to tell when reading through an itinerary what is included and what the days will actually look like. So we’re sharing how our EF ultimate break Grand Tour of Ireland trip experience! 

If you want to get $100 off your first EF Ultimate Break Tour, book with our like here, and the code will be automatically applied at checkout!

What It’s Actually Like Traveling with EF Ultimate Break

Why We Love Traveling with EF Ultimate Break

We traveled with EF Ultimate Break on the Grand Tour of Europe trip, and it was truly the trip of a lifetime! We love traveling with EF Ultimate Break because it removes so much of the detailed planning required for an international trip. EF Ultimate break also makes it super affordable to travel. Read more about why traveling with EF Ultimate break is worth it in our detailed post

Are EF Ultimate Break Trips Customizable?

While there are a ton of activities included in a tour with EF ultimate break, there is free time built into the schedule. Thanks to having a full-time tour director, they can offer suggestions and even plan additional activities for the group if people are interested. For the grand tour of Ireland, our tour director planned several activities for us, and some of them were favorite things that we did! So remember this when booking a trip with EF Ultimate Break: having a tour director can open up opportunities to do things you wouldn’t have considered doing on your trip! And when planning your free time ahead, remember that there might be opportunities through your tour director. 

How Do I prepare for an EF Ultimate Break Trip?

Before your departure, you will likely not have an hour-by-hour itinerary for each day of your trip. This is one small criticism of EF Ultimate Break that we have. We are BIG planners, so for us, we wanted to have a detailed itinerary before we left home on our trip. Especially because we wanted to plan some popular activities that required timed tickets. In retrospect, we probably should have tried to reach out to our tour director about it earlier. But at the same time, sometimes the tour directors don’t know the exact day’s schedule until a few days before. Sometimes, this was a little frustrating because we had ideas of what we wanted to do during our free time. Still, we weren’t sure of how long we were actually going to have, or when precisely that free time will start, or where we would be physically during the day when free time started (since walking or transit to destinations might be required). But when traveling with a tour group like EF Ultimate break, you have to be adaptable and flexible in this way since you’re on the tour’s schedule. Just something to keep in mind! Because of this, we recommend having several ideas for free time pre-departure so that when the time comes, you can make a decision. 

In addition to researching activities for free time, we recommend researching restaurants as well before departure, especially if you’re a foodie or if you have dietary needs. Pam is a vegetarian, so we needed to find restaurants that had items on the menu she could eat. And Kathrine is a huge foodie, so she wanted to try the best local cuisine. So before departure, we put in time to find several restaurant options for each place we traveled. We didn’t want to be wasting time trying to find a restaurant the day off. 

EF Ultimate Break App – Predeparture

Before your trip, you will added to your tour group on the EF Ultimate Break app. This is a great place to communicate with others before the trip, so you can plan free time and get to know everyone. Your tour director will also contact you through the app or by email with pre-departure information.

How Much Money Do I Need Per Day on an EF Ultimate Break Tour?

During your trip, you will pay for at least two meals per day, non-included tips, and any non-included activities. We recommend anywhere from $100-$200 per day, depending on how much shopping and additional activities you plan. But usually, $100/day is enough.

Book with our referral link and get $100 off your next EF Ultimate Break trip!

EF Ultimate Break Grant Tour of Ireland 

Why did we choose the Grand Tour of Ireland? 

We chose the Grand Tour of Ireland because our ancestors are from Ireland, and it’s been on our bucket list for years. The grand tour of Ireland is one of the two all-Ireland trips EF Ultimate break offers. We also liked how the trip included all the major cities in Ireland and attractions while offering free time. This adventure-packed trip has everything from the lively streets of Dublin to the stunning Cliffs of Moher to the amazing Irish libations and cuisine. Read our blog post for an insider’s guide to this unforgettable journe

What’s included in the Grand Tour of Ireland? 

The Grant Tour of Ireland is a 9-day EF Ultimate Break trip that includes all the major bucket list items for Ireland! The trip includes:

  • Round trip flights
  • Full-time tour director 
  • Transportation between cities 
  • Welcome dinner and farewell dinner
  • Admission to included activities 

9 Days in Ireland Itinerary – EF Ultimate Break Grand Tour of Ireland  

Here is a detailed look at our day-to-day itinerary 

Day 1-2 – Dublin

The first two days of the Grand Tour of Ireland are the arrival and settle-in day. Almost all EF Ultimate break trips are like this. The first day is when you fly to your destination, get checked in to your first hotel or hostel, and then have the welcome dinner. Group members will arrive throughout the day. You might arrive early or later in the day, depending on where you are flying from. We arrived early, around 8 AM, in Dublin, so we had the whole day to explore! Which was great but also very tiring because of the jetlag. So, for us, our first day was a tourism day. That evening, we met with our tour director for introductions and then walked to our welcome dinner.

  • Free time 
  • Self-guided walking tour – Temple Bar, Penny Bridge, downtown 
  • Lunch in Temple Bar
  • Guided tour of Dublin Castle 
  • Checked in and met with group 

Day 3 – Dublin

Day 4 – Kilkenny

Book with our referral link and get $100 off your next EF Ultimate Break trip!

Day 5 – Killarney 

  • Toured Kilkenny Castle before driving to Blarney 
  • Blarney Castle – Free time at Blarney Castle 
  • Arrive in Killarney 
  • Dinner – The Shire 
  • Free time – walked around town 

Day 6 – Killarney 

  • Jaunting Cars tour of Killarney National Park 
  • Ring of Kerry driving tour with a stop for lunch and snack 
  • Tour director planned to hike at Killarney National Park 
  • Dinner – Bricin 
  • Tour director planned – Celtic Steps Show 

Day 7 – Galway

  • Drive to Galway with a stop at Cliff of Moher 
  • Free evening in Galway – Music and shopping 
  • Dinner – Gatto Rosso 

Day 8 – Galway 

  • Optional Aran Island Excursion – all day with lunch at Aran Islands 
  • Farewell dinner – The Western

Day 9

Departure Day or continue on to another trip or extend your trip on your own 

When booking with EF Ultimate break, you can fly home on the departure day, extend your trip by booking another trip back to back, or continue on your own. We opted to continue on our own with family to explore Northern Ireland. When doing this, we called EF Ultimate break support and told them our new departure date (and where we wanted to fly back from), and they rearranged our flight home. When continuing on your own like this, you are responsible for all other accommodations and travel aside from your flight back to the United States. For anyone not continuing to another trip, day 9 is a departure day where you are shuttled from Galway back to Dublin for your flight home. 

Book with our referral link and get $100 off your next EF Ultimate Break trip!

Why you should book the Grand Tour of Ireland 

The grand tour of Ireland is an excellent trip if you want to immerse yourself in a single country. It was a great way to see most of Ireland’s major attractions and destinations in a single trip. The Grand Tour of Ireland has a good balance of organized and free time. We personally liked how the trip was just over a week, so it didn’t feel too short, but it wasn’t too long away from home either. We appreciated that being only in one country, the bus rides were not long. The longest ride was 3 hours. 

EF Ultimate Break’s Grand Tour of Ireland is a fantastic trip if you want to see beautiful landscapes, interact with wonderful people, eat amazing food, and drink good beer and whiskey!