EMERALD 2019, hiking and touring adventure in Ireland

June 10-15, 2019 Wicklow, Ireland

6 days, All inclusive|Group size: 12-16 |Included: Meals, Lodging (double occupancy), Guided touring, Guided hikes

Explore Ireland's incredible beauty and history with other geeks.

Explore the Emerald Isle with other geeks (and our expert local guides of course)! Meander through Dublin, hike the scenic Irish countryside, tour distilleries and the Guinness Storehouse, learn about the Irish Blackthorn Walking stick, and explore some of the scenic coast. The Stoop House in Shillelagh, Wicklow will be our house for the week as we venture into the enchanting country of Ireland. Want to relax? We'll have access to 2 acres of gardens and grounds for lounging, along with opportunities to explore the neighboring forests and towns. Join us for this epic Emerald Isle adventure!


Live Chat


(512) 953-3203
to reserve this trip over the phone

 Monday-Friday, 9 AM to 6 PM CST

The Location

Surrounded by 2 acres of landscaped private gardens, Stoop House (ours exclusively for the event) provides secluded, wooded countryside accommodation for us. Great views of the mountains & valleys can be had to the rear and the forest to the front, with miles of forest trails.

Outside to the rear there is a moated bar with seating and cover and a large garden with plenty of space to decompress, read a book, or go for a walk. There’s also a small waterfall and pond.

Itinerary

Day 1 - Walking tour of Dublin, St. Patricks Cathedral, Guinness Storehouse

This day is devoted to casually enjoying Dublin.

We’ll arrive at Dublin airport by 9am and make our way to our executive coach for a short transfer to Dublin city (for those arriving earlier and staying in the city, we’ll have a meeting place in city center at Nassau Street). We’ll stroll into the Trinity College campus, one of Ireland’s and indeed Europe’s most prestigious universities. As we leave through the front gates, we’ll see College Green, Temple Bar onto Dame Street, up to the famous statue of Molly Malone and stop for coffee/tea and pastries along the way. We will finish in St Stephen’s Green, a wonderful public park in the middle of town. Total time 1-1.5 hrs.

From there, we’ll board our coach for a panoramic city tour of Dublin (or a quick snooze if you’re just off a plane from the US), on the way to Guinness. After stopping at St Patrick’s Cathedral for a private tour, we’ll make our way to Guinness Storehouse for another private tour and a pint at the gravity bar (included).

Finally, we’ll make our way to our accommodations, unpack / relax for the evening, and have dinner together.

Day 2 - Breakfast, Irish countryside distillery tours + visit the Glendalough, a 6th century monastic site

Today will be all about the heritage of Irish whiskey. While a day of relaxing countryside views and touring is included, feel free to skip the tour, and spend the day relaxing at Stoop House.

After breakfast we’ll head to Powerscourt Distillery. Formerly the hub of all farming activity on the Estate, the Old Mill House is being faithfully restored and will house the distillery which you will enjoy in all its glory. Tastings of the distillery’s Fercullen range of whiskeys included; Premium Blend and 14 year old single malt (or 10 year old grain).

En route to the Walsh distillery, sit back and relax as we take the scenic route through beautiful County Wicklow, known as the ‘Garden of Ireland’. We’ll take a short stop at Glendalough en route, and learn a bit about this historic 6th century monastic site.

After our stop at Glendalough, we’ll arrive at a majestic 18th century estate Royal Oak, County Carlow.  Royal Oak was handpicked by Bernard and Rosemary Walsh to be the home of Walsh Whiskey Distillery. We’ll enjoy a private guided tour of the distillery and afterwards try one of their award-winning whiskeys, The Irishman Founder’s Reserve or Writers’ Tears Copper Pot.

Finally, we’ll head to Ballykeefe Distillery, an artisan Irish family farm distillery. We’ll enjoy a tour through the farm’s mill house, to the brewhouse, to the copper pot stills, to the warehouse where their whiskey is still sleeping soundly. Final stop, tasting rooms — (transformed from the horses stable) where we’ll sample Ballykeefe’s own Gin, Vodka and Poitin.

By late afternoon we’ll be headed back to our accommodations for some relaxation and dinner.

Not into whiskey? No problem. Enjoy the grounds of the Stoop House, read a book, or go on an afternoon hike!

Day 3 - Explore the ancient oak forest, happy hour at Big House

Today is all about exploring our surroundings. We’ll wake up to a casual breakfast and find our way to some of the hikes nearby in Tomnafinnoge Woods. We’ll explore the ancient oak forest together (for those looking for a long walk), and meet up at the Big House for a pint, games, and an enjoyable cap to a relaxing day.

Day 4 - Walk to Village of Shillelagh and explore, visit the maker of the famous Shillelagh Blackthorn Walking Stick, explore the village nightlife

After a casual morning and breakfast, it’s time to live like a local and visit the village of Shillelagh. We’ll travel by foot to explore the town and visit the famous Olde Shillelagh Stickmakers store. Duck into a local pub and enjoy some color flavor. Today is a day to take in your surroundings and meander.

Day 5 - Walking tour in National Heritage Park, tour the haunted Loftus Hall, enjoy the beauty of Hook Lighthouse

Time to explore the coast and learn about the 5000 years of Irish history. Want to explore more around the Stoop House grounds? This tour is optional (but included).
We’ll head down into Wexford to the Irish National Heritage Park for a private walking tour. The park is a 9 acre woodland dotted with reconstructed houses dating from the neolithic period to the Viking Longhouse.  We’ll finish in the Royal House to learn about what life was like for the Vikings when they arrived.
We’ll make our way from Heritage Park to Loftus Hall, the most haunted place in Ireland and learn about this storied place.
Finally, we finish at Hook Lighthouse for a special after hours tour. After a Mead reception in the Lighthouse keepers cottage, we’ll enjoy a tour of the Lighthouse. Cloudy or fair, we’ll enjoy a spectacular view and might be extra lucky and catch a pool of Dolphins or a whale swimming by. We’ll finish with a seafood (with vegan options) meal in the Watchtower.
Then it’s back home to our accommodations for one final night!

Day 6 - Early breakfast + departures

What's Included

These parts of the experience are included

  1. Three meals a day and snacks
  2. Sleeping accommodations
  3. All transportation for the duration of the event
  4. Scheduled tour admissions
  5. Hiking guides
  6. Touring guides
  7. Wifi
  8. Event swag

What's not included

Your flight is not included in the ticket price (Aer Lingus, the flag carrier of Ireland, has direct flights from New York for $638 during the event.) Plan to be at the Dublin airport at 9am for pickup on June 10th and depart no earlier than 1pm on June 15th.

Consider as you sign up

To protect your travel investment, we recommend the purchase of travel insurance.
Additional terms and conditions apply.

Accommodations

Lodging

Enjoy a comfortable room appointed with linens and modern bathrooms. We’ll have plenty of room to get together as there are common areas inside and outside of the house.

Accommodations are double-occupancy with 2 and 1 bed options (rooming preferences will be collected after signup).

Wifi is available for those that need to check in.

Food

All meals are included. Accommodations will be made for dietary restrictions (i.e. vegetarian, gluten, dairy, allergies, etc). Please fill out the relevant information in your welcome survey and we will do our best to accomodate your needs. Three meals and snacks will be provided each day.

Gear list

Below is a list of suggested gear to bring with you on your trip. It’s not an exhaustive list, just a list that will help make sure you have the essentials.

As you pack, think about these two ideas:Assume there might be precipitation. Backpacks should have waterproof covers (some are built into backpacks, so check yours), hiking boots should be waterproof, and clothes should be made of quick drying material (denim is ok to bring for a night on the town, but won’t be comfortable during a hike if they get wet). Temperatures can vary between day and night, and from day to day. Think about dressing in layers (3-5 top layers that can be taken off and put on throughout the day).

Clothing

  1. Waterproof / windproof jacket
  2. Lightweight fleece / jacket
  3. Short sleeved t-shirts
  4. Long sleeved t-shirts
  5. Hiking pants
  6. Hiking socks

Shoes

  1. Athletic and/or trail shoe
  2. ‘Around camp’ shoe
  3. Flip flops

Accessories

  1. Hat
  2. Scarf

Misc

  1. Small day backpack with rain cover
  2. Personal items / toiletries
  3. Sleep mask
  4. European electrical adapter
  5. Portable battery
  6. Charger for phone / camera / etc
  7. Water bottle
  8. Sunglasses
  9. Sunscreen
  10. Insect repellent
  11. Bandanna
  12. Camera

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Do I have to work in tech to feel comfortable attending?

No way! While there are many people in tech related industries that attend, people from academia, sciences, property management, and other industries also attend. Everyone has one thing in common, though -- they want to disconnect from the daily grind (and technology).

What is the gender distribution?

Geek Adventures trips are normally about 50/50 people identifying as female/male. No matter how you identify, you are always welcome.

Where do people travel from to attend these events?

We've had participants from all over North America and Europe and expect to see more geographical diversity from attendees in the future. International trips tend to see a larger international turnout than United States domestic trips.

How many years have you been in business?

Geek Adventures started operations in 2016 and has been creating experiences for geeks ever since.

I would like to room by myself, is that possible?

While all participants are encouraged to room with others during the trip, sometimes people prefer to room by themselves for a variety of reasons. If you're one of those people, please get in touch and we can work out an accommodation.

How does room / tent sharing work?

If you're a couple traveling together, we'll make sure you're bunking together. If you're a solo traveler, we make rooming assignments based on your preference, and then based on complementary interests from the intake survey. You will never be placed in a mixed gender sleeping arrangement unless you've indicated you're ok with it.

Why do people attend Geek Adventures events?

Here's a sample from previous attendee registration forms -- human connection, decompression, new friendships, inspiring conversations, networking, great conversations, awesome people disconnected from the world, explore new places.

Are children / families allowed at events?

Unless specifically noted, trips are designed for attendees 21+. Hiking with Geeks, the free local hiking groups around North America are designed for attendees 18+ or younger children when accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Does a digital detox mean no cell phones?

Not exactly... we realize mobile phones are needed for safety and picture taking, we just ask that during an event, you try to disconnect as much as possible from the other stuff. Example: If you normally read on your phone, bring a book instead. If you normally play games on your phone, pick up a game at the event and play in person! You'll be happy you did.

Is alcohol allowed?

All events are BYOB. Alcohol is allowed, and sharing is encouraged. We've found that cans are far easier to take on adventures than bottles, so please plan accordingly.

Have another question? Get in touch.

Testimonials

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Swaati Bhat

"I would highly recommend camping with Geek Adventures, specially if you are a beginner or first timer. One of the best hosts who is friendly, welcoming and makes sure you don't feel left out. I am glad we chose this event as our first camping in the US. I feel confident and am very keen to explore more camping events in future."

Joel T.

"One of the best things I’ve done in my life. I made great friends, learned and hiked a lot, and explored a part of the world I don’t think I ever would have otherwise."

Waving hello from the top of Iceland ;-)

Jackie M.

"I never wanted this event to end because it felt like the beginnings of some really excellent friendships. Hiking, sitting around a bonfire, laughing and eating with everyone was amazing and inclusive. All the arrangements were taken care of and I never wanted for anything."