Travel Weekly's Ireland E-Letter: Oct. 2, 2003

MORE GO, LESS DOUGH: CIE Tours Int'l added four new discounted departures of its seven-night, land-only Irish Pub and Folk Tour, with the extra trips--now priced at $696 per person--scheduled for Oct. 30 and Nov. 6, 20 and 27. The rate-- discounted by $60--includes accommodation at first-class hotels; full Irish breakfast daily; six dinners; escorted sightseeing via motorcoach with a driver and guide; admission charges as outlined in the itinerary; and all local taxes and service fees. Activities include tours and tastings at the Guiness Storehouse, Old Jameson Distillery and Kinsale Brewing Co.; a walking tour of Kinsale; a Shannon River ferry ride; and admission to Dublin Castle, the Rock of Cashel, the Cobh Heritage Center and Blarney Castle. The $60 discount applies now through day of departure; full payment is required at booking. Agent pay is 10% on land; call (800) CIE-TOURS or visit www.cietours.com.

WE DO PUBS, TOO: Sceptre Ireland offers travelers pints galore with an air-inclusive, four-night Sights & Sounds Pub Tour, priced from $549 per person for departures Jan. 31 and Feb. 2, 4, 6 and 8 from New York [Kennedy], Boston and Baltimore-Washington; Chicago and Los Angeles departures are available from $639 and $749, respectively. The tour includes roundtrip airfare; two nights each in first-class hotels in Galway and Dublin; full Irish breakfast daily; two dinners; a private motorcoach with professional driver/guide and sightseeing; portage of one suitcase per person ; and all tips, taxes and service charges [except tips to the driver and guide]. The pub tour is also offered for departures Feb. 10, 12, 14, 20, 22, 24 and 26 at $599 per person from New York [Kennedy], Boston and Baltimore-Washington; $689 from Chicago; and $799 from Los Angeles. Agent pay is 10%. For more information, call (800) 221-0924 or visit www.sceptreireland.com.

GARDEN OF DELIGHT: Clients might enjoy a visit to Northern Ireland's Mount Stewart, an estate that sits on the Ards Peninsula in County Down. Its grounds were recently voted "Top Garden in Europe for Inspiration" by analyst Ursula Buchan, of the British newspaper The Independent. Mount Stewart, which also has been nominated to Unesco's World Heritage List, is cared for by Britain's National Trust environmental charity group. Created in the early 1920s by Lady Edith, wife of the seventh Marquess of Londonderry, the unique gardens are enjoyed by millions of visitors each year. Experienced National Trust gardeners conserve a range of rare plants thriving in the mild climate of the Ards Peninsula. For more information on the Mount Stewart gardens, visit www.ntni.org.uk.

HELPING HAND: Destinations Ireland & Great Britain said it will honor deposits of up to $200 per person paid to bankrupt Far & Wide companies if clients choose to rebook their plans for travel through March 31 to Ireland with the New York-based operator. The company will pay travel agents 12% commission on these replacement bookings, said Declan O'Brien, president of Destinations Ireland & Great Britain. Agents must provide proof of Far & Wide deposit. For more information or to make reservations, call (800) 832-1848 or visit www.destinations-ireland.com.

CLARIFICATION: Sceptre Ireland's six-night Mysteries and Castles self-drive tour is priced from $956 for travel Jan. 1 to March 31. Incorrect pricing was provided to us for last week's Ireland E-letter.

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