Customer FeedbackWe would like to say thank you very much to everyone who has travelled with Driftwood and thank you also for your kind words. We have put a huge amount of work into creating a product that we consider to be very special, and it is always fantastic to hear that that you agree. Warm Regards Rob, Mark, Wendy, Mia, Russ, Dee, Paddy, Jean, Larry, Emmet and Sean (and the coaches!).
11 day Discover Ireland Tour Reviews
It was a fantastic tour. I’ve been in fifteen countries with various types of transportation and lodging. I have to say this was the most enjoyable way to travel. I saw history, culture, beauty, antiquities, and more. Our group of people were great and Paddy Connelly was the best tour guide I have ever had. I will certainly tell folks about your services. Jane Easley, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2014 This was, as you know, my second Driftwood trip, and I thoroughly enjoyed it just as much as the first. I am a Driftwood fan, that’s for sure. Mark did a wonderful job. Besides being incredibly knowledgeable, he sang, told stories, and has a wonderful sense of humor. We all loved having him as our guide. Marion Jacobs, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2014 Everything was great. Kathy and I both think that this was the best vacation that we ever had. We like the small group tour (only15 on our tour) in a smaller vehicle, as opposed to the big coach tour with 50 or 55 folks, etc. Our little vehicle had good visibility, and was able to take the back roads, so we saw some small towns that the big bus tours miss. We stayed in mostly smaller little hotels and B&Bs and even a castle (the Abbey Glen Castle hotel), and had wonderful meals, and saw spectacular sites, and listened to wonderful music in the pubs, etc. The meals were excellent. Our tour guide was the best tour guide that I have ever had. He not only educated us about the history and the legends and the myths and the traditions and the geography and the geology, etc., but he also serenaded us with Irish ballads, and he even recited poems and prose (James Joyce, Oscar Wilde, W.B. Yeats, Samuel Beckett, Jonathan Swift, etc.). What fun! We had some sing-a-longs as we traveled from here to there, etc Mike Kirkpatrick, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2014 A little time has passed since my friend Lorraine and I finished our Irish Driftwood tour with guides Larry to start and finishing with Mark Doherty. The Driftwood tour was a wonderful experience that I shall not forget easily. All aspects made the tour a pleasure. The guides, the destinations, accommodation etc. Thank you for an enjoyable holiday. I will definitely recommend Driftwood to others who hanker to see the Emerald Isle. Penny Ireland, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, July 2014 I’m old-fashioned and can’t read my emails while I’m on holiday, but thanks for your welcome-email which I have just read. Your customer relationship management is excellent I had the most wonderful holiday and thanks to Emmet a real Irish experience. He is an excellent guide, a wonderful person and a great story teller. He’s a very knowledgeable person and – what is more – he can convey this knowledge in a very interesting way. I learnt a lot in these 11 days without ever having the feeling of “being taught”. Emmet also has great social skills. He created a good group feeling right from the beginning and always made sure that everybody was happy with whatever we decided to do. He’s an asset to your company. So thank you for offering such a wonderful tour. The group size (9) was perfect. I saw breath-taking scenery, a lot of culture, beautiful towns and villages – and even the weather was gorgeous most of the time. What more do you want?! Barbara Requardt, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2014 The tour exceeded my expectations and my mom, my sisters and I will be talking about this trip for the rest of our lives! Kudos to Paddy for his patience, diplomacy and special care taken to insure his passenger’s enjoyment. He had quite a diverse group of tourists in his care and he handled all of us with care and wisdom above and beyond. He truly helped make this trip more enjoyable and memorable. Edie Sanders, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2014 First I need to explain, that before Sharon and I retired, we had the good fortune to have travelled extensively with my company, with up to 225 people on our tours, to numerous places all over the world, for about 30 years. So to put it bluntly I have been on a lot of tours with a lot of different tour companies and guides. So how does Driftwood stack up against my other trip experiences? Rob, your tour is simply one of the best I have ever had the good fortune to have been on. The reason I would rate it so highly is simple, Emmet, he is the most professional guide I have been with, and his passion for, and knowledge about, Ireland, and it’s history were the highlight of our 15 traveling in Ireland. I will be telling all my friends who might be considering a tour of the Emerald Isle that Vagabond is the way to go. Please keep doing what you’re doing, because you do it so very well. Win and Sharon MacIntyre, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2014 My wife, Kathy, and I along with our good friends Bob and Marsha Kelley and Cheryl Crow had the pleasure of the 11 day Driftwood “Discover Ireland Tour”. Kathy and I have travelled quite a bit over the past 6 years including trips to, Russia, China, Egypt, Peru including the Amazon, Alaska, Ireland with CIE, Nepal and Tibet. My reason for listing the trips is because on all of those trips we had really good tour guides, but none of them were even close to being as good a guide as Mark. I had the opportunity to render a toast to Mark at our “last supper,” and when I said that there was no doubt that he is the best guide in Ireland it was no blarney, and our fellow travellers agreed. His ability to inform, entertain, display patience and react positively to any situation is unique. Kathy and I still have some places to see before we would visit Ireland for a third time, but if we could be sure of having him for a guide we would move that visit up on our priority list. Once again, we thank you and Driftwood Tours for a great time. Harry White, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2014 We are now back in California after our tour and could not be more pleased with the way it went. Emmet was superb in his passion, knowledge, delivery, and logistics. Our fellow travellers were both interesting and compatible. Even the weather cooperated. Jeff DeCurtins, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, July 2014 Hello and thanks for a great trip to Ireland! I just wanted to say that Emmet was a FANTASTIC tour guide! Extremely knowledgeable, interesting, funny, and had an evident passion for Ireland and a great manner for passing on that enthusiasm to the group. I became ill on the trip and he arranged a visit to the doctor, dropped me off, and explained to me about how the medical system in Ireland works. I truly appreciated the extra effort that he took to put my mind at ease and get me to the doctor. He went out of his way to answer our questions, respond to the group’s needs, and keep things lively and moving along at a decent pace. We had quite a few options of side excursions/tours that we could take and he explained each in great detail. I can’t say enough about how much we enjoyed having him as our guide. He definitely was the highlight of our trip and is both a superb story teller and great representative of your organization. I would recommend Vagabond/Driftwood Tours and particularly Emmet, to any of my friends that plan to visit Ireland in the future. Jennifer Querner, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2014 It was an enjoyable trip, and we found Mark epitomized Irish hospitality. He was always concerned about everyone’s safety and satisfaction with the tour. He went the extra mile and we appreciated his efforts — and his sense of humour — and his singing. Great job, Mark! Nita and Paul Wardlow, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2014 I just wanted to send a quick note thanking you so much for the grand experience we had with our recent Driftwood 11 day tour. My husband and I toured with you to celebrate our honeymoon, and we will always remember and cherish our time in Ireland with the fondest of memories. I would be remiss to not point out the significant contribution that our tour guide had on our positively wonderful experience. Emmet was really what helped make our overall experience be the true success that it was. I cannot sing high enough praises for Emmet. His passion for the island was infectious and all of us left inspired by this passion. His knowledge of the geology and archaeology was unmatched. His rich love and respect for the mythology and folklore delighted even the most cynical of tour members. Emmet was in and of himself a true highlight of our tour, and that does not in any way take away from the sights and scenes we saw while on tour. Instead it took our tour to a whole other level. Emmet and Vagabond have set the bar extraordinarily high for the future tours we will take. I cannot thank you enough for this experience and I look forward to future trips with Vagabond. Karina Lyons, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2014 We wanted to let you know what a thoroughly enjoyable time we had. We didn’t just go to Ireland, we experienced it. Both Larry and Mark are great guides – each has their own (tour) personality, yet is able to convey information in an entertaining manner – it is obvious they are well-versed in Irish history and enjoy delivering that history to the tour group. Now, was there a famine or not? Larry says no and Mark says yes -> think we need to have them debate! Another aspect of the tour we liked was the absence of large crowds of tourists. Our tour was able to deftly time and navigate around peak tour bus activities – this was greatly appreciated (and a significant reason for us choosing a company like Driftwood, specializing in small tour groups). As an anecdote, we went into a local pet store today, ran into a woman who grew up in Ireland, and we were surprisingly fluent in the locales and attractions that this woman grew up with – a testament to what we actually “learned” during our tour (tell Mark I was listening with my eyes closed!). Kenneth Carlozzi, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, July 2014 My husband and I had a wonderful time! Emmitt is a wonderful guide and we are so thankful to have someone that is so knowledgeable, friendly, and professional. I am glad we booked our trip with Vagabond. We are looking forward to hopefully coming back to Ireland in the near future. Linda Murray, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, August 2014 John and I wanted to personally write to you and let you know what a PHENOMENAL job Emmet did on our Driftwood Tour. My husband has been a business manager most of his working career and he said to me numerous times what a valuable employee Emmet is for Vagabond, the kind of person he always hoped he could hire! Emmet was extremely knowledgeable and very enthusiastic about sharing that knowledge with our group. His enthusiasm was high in the morning and at the end of the day, a difficult task! He made sure he connected with everyone, playing no favorites. It is obvious watching him in interactions with hotel keepers, restaurant staff, individuals involved in various tours etc where he is known, how well liked he is by these business associates. We cannot say enough about how well he did his job to make sure we all had a great time. This was our first group tour. We did not want to do a big bus tour and are so glad we chose Vagabond. You have done a great job packaging the Driftwood Tour and it will be difficult for us to find another tour comparable to the quality of the one offered by Vagabond. Thank you all for making our trip to Ireland so memorable. Linda and John Rahilly, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2014 I wanted to let you know what a wonderful trip I had in Ireland. It was your 11 day Driftwood Discover Ireland Tour. Initially Larry was our guide/driver and, as mentioned in my feedback, he personalised the trip for me by taking our group to the Michael Collins memorial. Earlier that day I had mentioned that Michael Collins was the name of my father. For me, it was quite a moving experience and I only wished that father had still been alive to share in the emotions of that visit. He often mentioned that he had a famous namesake. Mark was everything that Larry had told us he would be. We couldn’t have wished for better guides. Big thanks to Larry, Mark and Driftwood Tours for such a memorable holiday in Ireland. I certainly do love it as much as you do! Lorraine Smit, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, July 2014 We just got home a few days ago from our 11 day Driftwood tour. Myself, my wife, and our three friends (Harry and Kathleen White and Cheryl Crow, who travelled there with us) all agree it is probably the best vacation we’ve ever had. We were in Ireland 3 years ago with a large coach tour and found Driftwood’s small group tour much superior. We love the fact that we got to experience the back roads and small towns of Ireland, and that the itinerary is flexible. We loved the fact that our guide, Mark, and your trainee, Bebhinn O’Malley were able to make a change in the itinerary and organize a trip to Claire Island. Those of us who went along on this jaunt enjoyed the experience thoroughly. It was one of the highlights of the tour. I would also like to say a little about Bebhinn. She was a joy to have along on our tour. She is knowledgeable of Irish history and folklore and did her best to help Mark give us the best tour possible. She is going to make an excellent guide. And more about Mark. He might just be the best guide in Ireland. He is a wealth of knowledge on Irish history, legends, culture and music, and shares it willingly. He is also very funny and kept our whole group laughing, singing and thoroughly enjoying the trip. He is certainly an asset to your company. We will not hesitate to recommend Driftwood, and especially Mark and Bebhinn, to our friends. We will certainly be using Driftwood on future trips to Ireland. Thanks for a wonderful experience. Robert Kelley, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2014 I just want you to know that Mark is incredible! I have travelled a bunch and he is truly the best guide I have ever experienced. He is kind, thoughtful, knowledgeable and truly hilarious at times. And, oh my, he sings too! What more does one need? Sally Burke, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2014 We loved our tour. We had a fantastic time and really got a nice feel for Ireland – the people, the history, the culture. All in all we had a wonderful experience on our tour but I thought that you would want to know about our visit to this hotel. Sandra Culvahouse, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2014 We would like to thank Emmett for guiding our group around this lovely country. His background in archaeology and knowledge of the history of Ireland made it a truly enjoyable experience. Emmett¹s driving and communication skills were excellent, his love for Ireland evident and his concern for everyone getting to do what they wanted to do was always at the forefront. And of course the people of Ireland are unbelievable. We¹re already planning for a return visit. Best holiday ever. Sandra and Mark Urbanowicz 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2013 We have just finished the 11 day tour with Mark. More on how FABULOUS the tour was and how Mark made it so special. He is a treasure. Thanks for running such a fabulous tour company of Ireland and hiring Mark!!! Vicki Wiman, Tallahassee, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, September 2013 Mark Doherty,our Driver-Guide on the 11-Day Discover Ireland Tour beginning 2 September, was superb. Carson and I have taken several guided tours around the world and Mark is tops. He had all the skills, energy, knowledge, enthusiasm, flexibility, and personal charm one would wish for in a Driver-Guide. He handled the usual group dynamics beautifully, and there was an “interesting” mix of people in the group. He explained, helped, sang, told stories, listened and in every way made this the best of guided tours. We appreciated his arranging tables at restaurants along the way. We were happy with all the options he offered for the more active (that’s us) and those who wanted to take a little more time to relax. Joan Hostetter 11 day Discover Ireland tour, September 2013 Our trip with Driftwood tours of Ireland (“Discover Ireland” Driftwood, 16 September–26 September) was outstanding. The itinerary was diverse and interesting, and the “small group” type of travel was exactly what I was looking for. I cannot emphasize enough to you how much we enjoyed Ireland. I think we were very lucky in that our group was so friendly and fun. Everyone got along extremely well. However, undoubtedly the most important aspect to the success of our trip was our outstanding guide. I’m sure you have received many wonderful comments about Mark, so let me add my voice to the chorus. He was exceptional. His depth and breadth of knowledge, along with his engaging personality, immeasurably enriched our experience. I think we more closely visited the “real” Ireland. Congratulations on employing this fine young man. Congratulations, also, on your concept of how a tourism company should be run, and continued success. I have already passed along my “notebook of information” to close friends who would like to visit Ireland in the Fall of 2014. Paula Mahmet 11 day Discover Ireland tour, 2013 The tour was fantastic. Your country is beautiful and we all would like to return. I can’t say enough about Emmitt. He was the best! Very knowledgeable, very funny and worked tirelessly to keep us all happy. I particularly liked the way he adjusted the tour for someone if requested. Eg. surfing and fly fishing etc. The memories of our tour will never be forgotten. Sheldon and Shelley Rathwell 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2013 Our experience on the Driftwood tour from September 30 through October 10 proved truly special. It was our intent to not only enjoy the particularly beautiful scenery and features of Ireland but also to learn of the people and culture. Our wishes were fully met. Your emphasis throughout the experience was directed to our enjoyment rather than simply exposing us to a set list of locations. This subtle difference made a vast difference in our enjoyment. We were amazed at the quality of the accommodations as well as delighted at the unique and interesting nature of each of the nightly locations. The historic significance and special hospitality we experienced as illustrated by Abbeyglen Castle Hotel and Beech Hill and the special nature of Glengarriff and the Waterfront House truly made the journey far more than just a simple tour. Our guide Emmet Stafford regaled us throughout with Irelands culture and history delivered as both fact and fable in a most interesting and entertaining way. His appreciation of geography, geology, and culture, as well as his archeology made the story complete and particularly interesting. His skillful catering to our wishes and willingness to accommodate us, the weather, and the time (and his bimbling) made each day a fresh and new experience. His caring and considerate help and attention on the occasion of Marie¹s fall and need for medical attention certainly minimized her discomfort and reduced our concern for affecting the tour for others. We have nothing but praise for the tour and will be speaking positive things about you and yours for some time. Ted and Marie Keller 11 day Discover Ireland tour, September 2013 Our trip with Larry was outstanding. I don¹t see how it could have been better. We were with a great group including two children. I can¹t say enough about Larry, and the magnificent lodging and food. Had we driven and travelled by ourselves, we never would have found the like. We also would have missed the history, music and comedy of our great guide. Thank you for a wonderful vacation. Thomas T McGranahan, Sr.,M.D. 11 day Discover Ireland tour, August 2013 I just wanted to let you know personally, how much I enjoyed my tour. As a solo traveler, I was very hesitant when I booked this tour. Actually I was scared to death!. I have never travelled alone outside the USA. I have to admit my expectations were mediocre at best. However, I truly did have the time of my life, partly due to the great group I travelled with, but also due to Mark. His knowledge of Ireland’s history, geology, literature, and folklore is unbelievable! I expected to see the sights, but the stories, history, songs and folklore really blew me away! (let’s not forget his “Irish wit”). His love for his country showed in everything he did. I would recommend this tour to anyone. I have never laughed so much, learned so much, and enjoyed a vacation so much as I did on this tour. I hope someday to return to Ireland, and when I do, be assured that I will be using Vagabond again! Betsy Mitchell 11 day Discover Ireland tour, September 2013 Rob, we had the BEST TIME EVER! Our guide, Emmet, was a huge part of why this trip was so great. Thanks again for the awesome trip, we really feel like we had the chance to better understand the people of Ireland and see your amazing country. Regards Francine Crawford, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, August 2013 I’m back home and the trip was marvellous. I will recommend you to anyone interested. Mia was great. Very accommodating – a real sweetheart. Patricia V Coyle 11 day Discover Ireland tour, August 2013 We are agree that our trip with Driftwood was fantastic and will have memories of a lifetime. Everyone seemed to feel that every moment was outstanding and couldn’t identify their favorite – it was all good! Sean & Dee were both great! We spent more time with Dee so we got to know her a little bit more, but found both of them informative and helpful. Dee shared a great deal of history, language, singing and, of course, bubbles with us. It was also very accommodating of you to arrange such outstanding weather for us! We all returned home with tans, not something that most tourists can claim when returning from Ireland. Our accommodations were wonderful and comfortable. Thank you for making our experience in Ireland so wonderful. Kim Tamarin – Private 11 day Discover Ireland tour, July 2013 Michelle & I would like to thank you for putting together a really first class travel experience. Some comments – I would give Mark a 110% rating, he not only fulfilled all those things you expect from both a driver & a guide, challenging enough with a small tour group, but also told some wonderful stories, sang to us and in all the 11 days I did not see him get grumpy or be unprofessional in any way. He was the perfect host. Sights were great, Gougane Barra – stunning, perfect start. Bantry Bay, Garinish Island so beautifully scenic, Ceide Fields & neighbouring cliffs striking .Our tour group were great, I know you have no control over this but the tour format seems to bring the best out in people. I find it very hard suggest how you would make the tour better. I liked the way Mark had the flexibility to change the itinerary to fit in with the group and we certainly all had a great time. Regards Greg Rodoreda – 11 day Discover Ireland tour, September 2013 Just want to let you know that we had a great time on our Driftwood tour. Both of the driver/ guides were tremendous. .. Mark for the first couple of days and Russell who had to put up with us for the bigger part of the journey. In addition to knowing their information, they were very mindful and concerned about people as individuals. In my case, it was finding the dentist in Dingle as a tooth abscess on tour does not make for a happy traveller! Our group really got on well and I think that was in many ways because Russell joined in with meals and the laughs and just made us relax and have fun, whilst we were still taking in a lot of the history and the beauty of Ireland. It was grand! Deb and Phil Cook and Jill Carter, 11 day Discover Ireland tour June, 2013. I wanted to be sure I took a moment to provide you with very positive feedback on your tour and your lads. We had Mark for a few days only and then Russell came aboard. Both Gents were terrific with us! We also met Wendy and Dee along the way. Great gals! Having driven some of the roads myself in days past (in a very small car) I can only imagine how much harder it is with the tour bus. Both Marc and Russ did a brilliant job of maneuvering those tight roads. Not once was I concerned for my safety. I would like to say Mark was kind, polite, helpful and very entertaining for the short time we had him with us. Great fellow with tons of information and great fun! Russell came aboard like he had been with us all along! While there are many fantastic comments to make about Russell I will keep it as brief as possible. His attention to detail with all of us was amazing. Russ made sure each of us was engaged, having fun and helped whenever needed. He made sure our meals were as ordered and served timely. One comment about a place and by the next stop he had made calls and had information for us. He took great care for those who needed a Doctor and Dentist, checked on them throughout the day. We got into some nasty traffic heading into Belfast and Dublin upon our return. I am truly impressed with Russell¹s patience and calmness. He made the best out of every situation and ensured we all did as well. I could also not help but notice that Russell was just as engaged in the sites as we were. Very nice to have a guide who wanted to see the sites as much as we did and wanted us to get the most out of every stop. Truly a great young lad and asset to your team. The tour was ‘savage Craic’! My highest compliments to you and your lads. I know I will never have such a perfect trip again.I will be sure to send everyone your way when they are travelling to Ireland. Anne Marie Maddigan, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2013 Our tour with Emmet was over-the-top wonderful in every way. Within a few seconds of meeting him, we knew we were in good hands and that we were into something good. That guy knows his stuff. Simply outstanding. His friendly way and articulate skill and incredible store of knowledge….Well, I have no words to convey the praise he deserves for what all he did for us (and praise for you in employing him). I will recommend Vagabond and Driftwood to everyone we tell of our fabulous tour. We shall never forget it. And Emmet. And our fellow travelers. Oh yeah: and Ireland. So, thank you for designing the best tour we have ever taken. Tom and Judy Decker, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2013. We had a wonderful trip and it could not have been better. It was important to Andy and I to let you know what a great guide you have in Paddy. It was surprising to us how intelligent, devoted, industrious, versatile, and conscientious he is for someone so young. He never let us down, was always available, he even walked our group across busy streets. You are lucky to have such a terrific employee. Linda Opple, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2013. Just wanted you to know that Marybeth and I had probably the most stress free vacation ever. Paddy was a great guide, driver and very enjoyable person to be around. I will promote your tour to anyone that asks about our trip.Thanks for a great experience Dave and Marybeth Fontaine, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2013. Having recently completed the Driftwood 11 day tour,we want to let you know how very much we enjoyed it. The sites we visited more than matched our expectations. We especially want to tell you how much we enjoyed our guide Emmet. Emmet is a genuinely nice person with the perfect combination of fun and professionalism. His vast knowledge and communication skills enriched the sheer physical beauty of the island, making it an experience we will always treasure. His archaeological expertise enhanced the whole tour as well as our own post-tour visit to the National Museum in Dublin. We will definitely take every opportunity to recommend your company to any family and friends who are planning to visit Ireland. Thank you for a wonderful experience. Bruce and Ginny Garland, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2013. I had a FANTASTIC time. I couldn’t believe how wonderful everything was. Your country is beautiful and Emmet was an excellent guide and driver. Everything was perfect, well thought out, and yet still it felt as though everything was flexible. One small complaint – I wish I could have stayed for 11 MORE days. I am already saving up for my next trip. I will be telling everyone that Driftwood/Vagabond is the only way to go. I can’t say enough what fun I had and how great Emmet was in helping make sure that my dietary needs were accommodated and that he made my dad feel so alive and young again. Paula Arzio, 11 day Discover Ireland tour , May 2013 It was a fantastic experience and Paddy a great tour leader. Would thoroughly recommend the 11 day tour to anyone. Rob & Deb 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2013 I wanted to touch base with you and let you know just what a terrific time we had in Ireland traveling with Driftwood and seeing the country. The trip has been on our to do list for many years. Which brings me to the heart of the matter. Paddy is such an asset to your organization and to Ireland, as well. He is a born storyteller, full of intelligence, charm, wit and the stunning history of the country he obviously loves so much. The way he imparts all this to his guests is priceless. Pam and I tremendously enjoyed his company and I would definitely request him for a future travel guide, plus I will recommend him to all. I loved his musical selections and the fact that he was so willing to honor “special requests” for music that might not have been on his regular musical itinerary. You need more people like Paddy. Ah, what the hell, the whole world needs more people like Paddy. The first or second day there, I heard two or three lads talking in a pub and heard one of them say that something left him positively gobsmacked. I’d never heard the word before but, as a writer and lover of language, dialect and words, loved it’s visceral sound. I asked Paddy and he told me that it basically means that you’re astounded nearly speechless. And this sums up our trip to Ireland. Pam and I were positively gobsmacked – by the scenery, by the culture, by the history, by the warmth and friendliness of Irish people who never meet a stranger and, especially the group of oldsters I spend the evening talking with up in Enniscrone when we stayed at Martina’s place. And finally, but by no means the least, we were gobsmacked by having Paddy as our driver and guide. Two weeks with him was a pleasure and I do hope our paths cross again sometime in this world. Thanks again. Driftwood will always be on our itinerary for Irish adventures. Joe Palmer, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, May 2013. The first thing I must say is how much my sister in law and I enjoyed our trip. Emmett was absolutely superb, his story telling, the breadth of his knowledge re Ireland and the environment was second to none, he made everybody enthusiastic for the ruins, houses and various other historical sites we visited and history and geography come alive for us all. Emmett was so friendly to each and every one on the coach and helped anyone who had problems keeping up with the others (usually me!) He did not make me feel in anyway uncomfortable if I felt unable to do something. He must be a terrific asset to your company. Plus, a very good thing, bearing in mind the miles we traveled, to me he was a very safe driver. I really don’t think I can think of a single negative point re Emmet’s guardianship of us over the 11 days. I am aware that the trip we were on was not full, but the coach we traveled in was very comfortable and there was plenty of room to move about the coach, plus plenty of room for our luggage. All in all my experience of Ireland, Driftwood tours and, in particular, Emmett, was terrific and I would have no hesitation in recommending Driftwood or Vagabond to anybody wishing to do as Carol and I did. The Irish people were so friendly to us and I feel jealous of those people now on your tour. Rosemary Jones, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2013. We had a fantastic trip, despite the rain, and Emmett was the best guide we could have had. He was very knowledgeable historically that is for sure and forever cheerful. Thank you for a wonderful trip. Carmen & Laurie Winters , 11 day Discover Ireland tour, June 2013 First of all it was nice to meet the man behind the tour, good job. We were booked into an 11 day tour with Kevin. Needless to say, it was an incredible experience! The accommodations were first rate, the breakfasts were great and the surroundings were terrific. (you see I am running out of superlatives!) As for Kevin, I am sure you know the Irish gem you have in him. He was caring and thoughtful of his charges, making sure we were well informed, well photographed and of course well fed. He was very accommodating to each of us making sure that our interests of the trip was met. He was although a bit jealous that we met the King of Ireland and listened to his music and he did not. We had a wonderful trip filled with wonders and beautiful scenery, I’d come back just to see all the sheep in the mountains! There was also lots of “craic” from us and the rest of the group. I will not hesitate for one second to recommend this trip or any other Vagabond experience to my friends. The thoughtfulness that was evident on this trip made us feel very special. Again I ramble. Thank you so much for providing us the opportunity of seeing Ireland through the eyes of true Irishmen. Mary Therese and Peter Kluender, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, September 2012 We just wanted to tell you that we enjoyed our tour tremendously and that Kevin was a great tour guide. He was full of knowledge, stories and songs and kept our interest the whole time (except for maybe a few minutes of napping, especially in late afternoon before arriving at our next hotel)! Kevin was like a shepherd protecting his sheep! We just sat back and enjoyed the ride!!!! We can’t stop talking about our wonderful experience and are recommending it to everyone who hasn’t been to Ireland yet. It was also a pleasure to meet you, Rob. (and John). We can see what pride you take in your company and how you are always trying to improve things or add new things, with feedback from your customers. Thank you for a wonderful tour!! We love Ireland!!! Nancy & Butch Codi, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, September 2012 Hi Rob – Just wanted to let you know that our experience with Driftwood was absolutely splendid! The tour was wonderful and Brendan was quite a fabulous guide and driver – if he ever leaves you, send him our way! Barbara, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, September 2012 Just home in Australia after a 33 hour travel home – Australia is too far from everywhere! We (Brian & I) had a wonderful time in your beautiful country. Brendan, our driver/guide, who is younger than our youngest son! did you proud. He is a gem. So laid back and flexible, he made the trip so relaxing. His driving was exemplary, so careful. We had a great small group of 10 which after 5 days became 8 and we all got on really well. I commend you for the trip we did and seeing Ireland and Northern Ireland the way we did. We sure did have the best time ever and the weather was not too bad either. Thanks for a wonderful tour. Sue Adams, 11 day Discover Ireland tour, August 2012 Judy and I wish to thank the team at Vagabond-Driftwood for what we consider to be a highlight tour in our many travels through Europe. It is clear that much thought and experience have gone into the development of the tours. The flexibility that has been built in to allow for the wants/likes of the different people on the tour and to adjust for the vagaries of weather made for a rewarding visit. I cannot think of, nor have I come across in my research on touring Ireland, a more appropriate way to get an overview, and in-depth insights, of the DRI and Northern Ireland: their history, their lifestyles and their magnificent beauty. I cannot say enough about our tour guide, Kevin. He displayed not only an extensive and deep knowledge of Ireland, its history and the ins and outs of the different regions/counties and their people, but portrayed it in narrative and song, and with a deep passion, as, I feel, very few could. He was very attentive to the diverse needs of the tour group and did so cheerfully at all times. Based on our experience, we would certainly recommend the Driftwood tour to others, and have already done so! And to you, Rob, I wish to extend our thanks and deep appreciation for the expediency with which all of our requests were dealt, and for having maintained a high level of timely communication throughout the planning, and post-tour. Sincerely, Boyd and Judy Case. 11 day Discover Ireland Tour, August 2012 Tony and I just finished the most fantastic tour we’ve been on. When I signed up with you for the 11-day Driftwood tour that began on August 20, our goal was to learn more about Ireland, its people, culture, and history. With a combination of a good itinerary and a wonderful tour guide/driver (Brendan McDermott), we did just that. Brendan’s lay-back style was perfect as we saw everything planned without feeling rushed. He combined Irish music CD’s with stories and history about what we were seeing. He is very knowledgeable as well as being an excellent driver in difficult driving conditions. We appreciated his willingness to be flexible with the schedule and itinerary, and he went out of his way to make sure we were having a good time. We have no complaints and only good comments about Brendan. One of the highlights of the trip was going to Brendan’s cousin’s Beach Bar. It definitely gave us the opportunity to talk with “regular” Irish people, see how they live, and to see a unique bar. The walk along the ocean there was peaceful and scenic. Other highlights of our trip that we especially liked are the Kissane Sheep Farm, Dingle Peninsula (glad we had 2 nights there), Galway (need more time there!) and the Burren. We enjoyed watching a weaver weave wool in Aradura, and the residents of Aradura doing their weekly folk dancing (exercise) in the Heritage Centre was a wonderful experience. The famine houses and learning about the tragedy and hardship of the Irish people in the 1800’s (and on) are imprinted on our hearts. The black taxi tours in Belfast gave us more perspective of the troubles in Northern Ireland. Thank you, Rob, for a wonderful tour. I will certainly recommend your Driftwood tour to anyone thinking of visiting Ireland. We made a wise choice in going with your tour company, and we are thankful Brendan was our tour guide. Barbara & Tony Vella, 11 day Discover Ireland Tour, August 2012 Bill and I enjoyed our 11 day Driftwood trip very much. Our guide Kevin was the best tour guide we have ever had….he was considerate, well spoken with a great sense of humor, very informative, an excellent driver and a pretty good singer! Plus he offered photography suggestions and even took photos with our camera when we were unable to leave the van. The sights and sites on the trip were just what we had hoped for, the van was incredibly comfortable, and the tour companions were a nice addition. The hotels were very good and offered a nice variety. Ireland is indeed a beautiful country, especially when the sun shines upon it, not always the case on this trip. We learned a great deal about the history and current conditions in the many different areas of the country, and we found the Irish people very friendly and welcoming. Thanks for answering all our questions and concerns prior to the trip, and once again, we found this trip to be very much to our liking, and we will certainly recommend your company and this tour to our friends. Sincerely, Bill and Norma Ford, 11 day Discover Ireland Tour, July 2012 So, there’s this Irishman, a German lass, 2 Aussie gals & 5 Yanks and they walked into a pub…and then they sang & drank & laughed & sang & laughed & drank some more & then the next day they packed up their van, drove off & did it all again! Along the way they saw spectacular scenery, explored all the back tracks and short cuts and long ways around. They took in heaps of history & local knowledge and had a mighty time. At times, sad stories & songs made them cry. Other times, they laughed til the tears ran down their cheeks. Dear Brendan, Rob & All at Driftwood & Vagabond To say I’ve had the best holiday is such an understatement. The tour delivered everything it promised but so much more besides. I don’t want to throw any more cliches at you – spectacular scenery, beautiful, hospitality, blah, blah, blah…. It was simply brilliant. Brendan, your ‘research’ has proved invaluable! All those hours put in on previous trips, checking out pubs, bands, restaurants and cafes, exclusively for the benefit of your guests, saved us so much trouble & time. The music was always great & the food was always beautiful – we are indebted. Please carry on that research and find someone who can do Waltzing Matilda justice. I love that you’ve sought out smaller, often family run businesses to support. Their genuine appreciation for our business and want for us to have a wonderful time was obvious. The boys on the Garnish Ferry were great – didn’t mind being taken over by mutinous Aussies at all. I loved the CD’s while we were travelling. I loved the van, comfy and cruisy – perfect. The size of the tour – to have only 9 and then 5 of us in the group was brilliant. Brendan, I loved your calm and careful driving – thank you. I loved the freedom to turn … left or right??? I loved the couple of hours at The Beach Bar. Taking over the bar, talking to the local farmers about cattle prices, rainfall, acreage and road frontage. To meet and get to know real people is priceless and what I will remember forever. The flexibility to spend some time however we wanted was much appreciated. The time spent at Beech Hill House was a standout. The accommodation and meals were absolutely superb, but the time spent in front of the fire with John the Barman & the lovely young Chef was the best bit. (Apart from that Library of course) I love the respect you all obviously have for Ireland and for the Irish people that have paved the way for us all. It’s a passion that you don’t always see in Australia – we are such a lucky country and take a lot for granted. I’ve learnt a lot from you in that regard. I felt totally safe and catered for. Every detail of the tour was taken care of, but most of all, it was just so much fun. I will shout ‘Driftwood!’ from the rooftops, along with a coo-eee for good measure, and recommend your tours to everyone. I can only say, Thanks a Million, Clara Harris, Geraldton Western Australia, 11 Day Discover Ireland Tour with Brendan July 2012 I just wanted you to know how much we enjoyed our 11-day Driftwood tour with Mark (first 4 days) and Brendan (last four). We’ve been home since September 28th and I’m still sorting through the many pictures I took. Janet and I are also exchanging photos. Ireland is such a beautiful country with such a rich history……there were photo ops everywhere we went! Even the weather cooperated and allowed us to enjoy several beautifully sunny days! Our day on Inis Oirr was a case in point. Both Mark and Brendan were excellent driver/guides, full of information, patience, and a great sense of humor. We enjoyed them both. All the tours were great, but the two guided ones in Derry and Belfast stand out in our minds. They were both eye-opening and very sobering, and having the opportunity to talk with each of our group’s Black Cab drivers in Belfast (one Catholic, the other Protestant) was most enlightening. All the best & thanks for everything! -Carol, 11 Day Discover Ireland Tour, September 2012 The tour was absolutely fantastic!!! Better than Jim or I anticipated. Yes, I did fall in love with Ireland, and in spite of missing our family and friends, we still were sad to leave. I found each day to be adventurous and different than the day before. I am so glad we chose the 11 day trip because I found Northern Ireland fascinating with its history as well. All the marvelous scenery will never be properly captured in our pictures and I miss seeing those beautiful pastures and mountains dotted with sheep and cows. Most of the people were just so friendly and fun to talk to wherever we went on the tour. I didn’t quite get the hang of the Euros and Pounds but even when I was trying to weed through my coins the store owners or pub owners would help me out. We can’t say enough about Kevin! He was so professional and so helpful as well as being a walking history book!! We loved his humor, his jokes, and his songs–he really made the tour eventful for us and at the end we felt like we were saying good bye to a dear friend. I especially appreciated his taking the time to help me find a driver to go to Killaloe, as that meant so much to be able to at least see the town my ancestors were from. We also thought how nice it was that you were there. Rob, to greet us all before we took off on our tour (in spite of the 1000 questions we emailed you or Gillian about the trip!!!) That was such a thoughtful gesture and it is those things that make your company stand out from some of the other tours. I have already recommended your company to everyone I’ve talked to and one of these days I plan to come back too. Thank you again for making this trip so memorable and enjoyable!!! Maureen and Jim Budny, 11 Day Discover Ireland Tour, September 2012
7 day Driftwood Treasure Island Tour
Mark was an exceptional guide. He was as energetic and personable as he was knowledgeable and he was great at sensing were the group was and adjusting the schedule so that everyone had the sense of being very special. He exhibited wonderful flexibility and though we were on a schedule, it never seemed so. We all enjoyed Mark’s many talents, from scheduling to driving over small country roads, to singing old ballads and telling us tales of yester year, all with an enthusiasm that would make you think it was the first time he had taken a group on tour. I loved the history he shared with us. Ireland is truly a magical place. I especially appreciate Mark’s willingness to retrieve a fleece jacket left behind and post it to me…Very much above and beyond the call of duty. We could not have wanted a better guide nor a finer experience. Just wish I could have done the second week. I know it would have been fun. Sarah Demers, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, June 2013. Thanks for a great vacation! It tops our list for the best trip we’ve ever taken. Mark and Dee are great, we couldn’t have had better guides. Dee is wonder, loved her fairy stories. We are so happy that we chose Vagabond for our vacation. You came highly recommended and you did not disappoint! We have recommended you to friends and to my sister, who are thinking of going to Ireland next year. Thank you again for a great trip! We hope to join you again in a few years and maybe explore the northern part of your beautiful country. Kathy and Fred Casey, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, May 2013. Just finished a Driftwood tour with Mia and Dee. What a great time my wife, daughters and I had. We had such a wonderful time seeing the sights of Ireland. The tour went at pace that we saw many things in a day but were never tired. As a photographer by trade I had plenty of time at all our stops to get great shots. We had a very nice group of people on our tour that are now our friends. Both Mia and Dee were the best at making suggestions as to what was best to do as the weather changed hour by house as it does in Ireland. They were both knowledgeably and just kind people. You are fortunate to have them on your staff. We will definitely be coming back to tour with you – Thanks John, Teresa, Sofia & Kyra Kofodimos, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, June 2013. Wow! Fantastic! What an enjoyable week! It really is difficult to put exactly how much fun our group had! While we certainly had high and hopeful expectations your guides, Mark and Deirdre greatly exceeded our hopes! Both were fun, informative and a joy to be around. While Mark and Deirdre certainly have different & distinct styles, they both have many common traits in abundance; knowledge, enthusiasm, interest, concern for their customers and an obvious satisfaction in doing a good job! The transition from Mark to Deirdre was seamless. We had fun with both! The sites we saw and the information we received was unmatched. There is absolutely no way we could have planned an independent tour through Ireland and seen the beautiful landscapes or learned about the hidden treasures Mark and Deirdre were able to share with us. I wholeheartedly recommend your tour for anyone interested in seeing Ireland. We are already talking about returning and seeing the northern part with one of your tours. Thank you again! Mark Corrigan, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, May 2013 We had a wonderful time on your tour. Jeanette and I revisiting many of the same places we saw in 2001 and this time sharing it with our children. Paddy and Dee were great guides-especially Dee, she is most entertaining. And letting someone else do the driving this time sure made for a more relaxing time!!! They are very good drivers. Best regards for the continued success of your company. Richard and Jeanette Foster, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, May 2013. We had a wonderful time with Emmet and you should never let him leave your company. We were both VERY impressed with his knowledge and his friendliness. Great impression left on us for the Irish people. If we are ever able to come back to Ireland, Driftwood will be the tour company we contact. We also met Dee and Russ, also just as nice and friendly; though I wonder about the sanity of Russ….. ;>) D’Anne Weaver, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, May 2013. Just few words to thank you and Russell. I got a very positive feedback about the trip from my parents, they said it was interesting and very well organized. Additionally, Russell was very kind and patient and despite the English of his passengers was not so strong (!!) he was able to overcome all potential difficulties in dealing with them, finding other ways to effectively communicate…They were very pleased and could definitely enjoy the new country, its habits and flavor as they (and I that have been living here for a while) would have hoped. On behalf of my father thanks again and look forward to crossing paths again maybe next year for the tour of the North ! Fabrizio Agressi, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, April 2013 You have two very attentive guides and Dee and Paddy were a pleasure to work with. Dee was a jewel and continually added smiles and happy stories to the day. We had a grand time and made some lovely new friends. Keep up the good work! Carol and Bruce Hodges and Beth Hodges, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, May 2013 We really had a great time, especially thanks to Paddy who has been a great guide. He drove very carefully and always had some information to tell or some song to play or some story about Ireland. Everything was perfectly organized and worked out well. We really want to thank you and everybody from Vagabond for this great experience. It was a perfect way for us to discover Ireland. Katja & Tom, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, May 2013 Just completed our seven day trip. We want to thank you for employing Emmet. He was informative, helpful, courteous, and the finest guide we have ever had and we travel quite a bit. The overall trip exceeded our expectations and was grand in every way. Paul and Nancy Madwin, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, May 2013 I just wanted to let you and our guides, Wendy and Kevin, know how much we enjoyed our 7 day tour. We had so much fun with our group and loved all the out of the way places we saw. It truly gave us a sense of Ireland and the knowledge of Wendy and Kevin was invaluable. They handled everything with patience and ease, making us feel that nothing was too much trouble. The van was so comfortable and made it easy to get around on those narrow roads. From the start of my inquiry to the last day of the trip, things were done in a friendly and professional manner. We will certainly recommend Vagabond. Best regards, Kim McDonnell. 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, July 2012. You have an excellent company and we are so glad we booked with you. Kevin is an articulate, informed, and capable guide. I posted your website on my Facebook highly recommending your tours. Thank you for this excellent introduction to your most beautiful and charming country. best, Marta Tanenhaus, . 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, August 2012 Rob, the trip was absolutely brilliant. It completely exceeded my expectations, which were really high to begin with! The value we got for what we paid was incredible. You guys might actually want to think about charging more. There’s no shame in making a profit! I’ll be recommending this trip to many people here in the Middle East who are in need of some green! Best regards, Regan Doherty, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, August 2012 We spent two months in Europe for our honeymoon and did a few other tours after Ireland with several tour guides (some who’d been voted best for their company). The Driftwood tour was the best (the places, the accommodation, the food) but without a doubt, Kevin was definitely the best tour guide we had. When you go to some many beautiful places around Europe, it is not just the locations that make a tour memorable. Kevin made sure that everyone had the best experience of Ireland and we really are grateful. We will definitely recommend Driftwood to our friends and family. Kind regards, Chantelle Miller, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, June 2012 I Just wanted to let you know what a great time we had on your 7 day Driftwood Tour of the South and West with Kevin Clancy. Our four person group really loved the experience. Kevin was extremely knowledgeable on Ireland’s history, he and kept us entertained, on time, and enjoying the experience throughout the entire tour. This was our first trip to Ireland and our first tour after many years of vacations “on our own”, and we saw so much more than I could have found, and many smaller locations that large tour buses could not even reach. In addition, the hotels, pubs, and food were consistently great. I would highly recommend Vagabond Driftwood tours and Kevin to anyone looking for a first class and unique tour of the Emerald Isle. Thanks, Craig MacLatchie, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, September 2012 I’m writing to let you know that our Driftwood tour with Kevin Clancy was indeed fantastic! Kevin is an awesome ambassador for Ireland- he generously shared his love for and knowledge about Ireland as we traveled to see ancient sites, spectacular scenery, and interesting people. I can’t imagine a better guide- he told stories, sang, introduced us to interesting people, made great suggestions for places to eat and hear Trad music. The itinerary was wonderful- beautiful and interesting. In short, we were extremely pleased with the tour and would recommend Driftwood to anyone wishing to see Ireland! Thank you! Susan & Peter Nielsen, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, September 2012 I tried to do the survey, but I was not able to get it to behave when I tried to send it. But we do want you to know how much we enjoyed our Driftwood tour. Danny was an excellent guide–we do understand that he does not work directly for Vagabond, but he is a capable driver and a fine guide with a lot of useful and interesting information about Ireland and its history. We liked being able pick and choose activities–my husband and I elected not to go kiss the Blarney Stone (a few years ago in Pisa, we chose not to be photographed holding the leaning tower, so you can perhaps tell from that what kind of travelers we are) and I chose to go to Inishmore while my husband elected to see the sheep dogs and Galway. Happily, our tour group was very compatible and friendly–I joined two sisters who were traveling together for the Aran Islands trip, six of us rented a horse-drawn carriage, and we spent a very enjoyable afternoon exploring the island. We liked all the hotel arrangements–nice variety there and we were pleased that several of the hotels were in the central part of town within walking distance of many places. Also, we particularly liked the small-group aspect of your tour. One thing we definitely did not want was to be crowded into a huge bus with 50 other travelers (with a group that size, restroom stops alone would take half the day!) because the entire experience would, we think, be much more impersonal. Ireland is an astonishingly beautiful country. The Slea Head drive alone was worth the trip to Ireland. Dingle is a lovely town altogether. The ferry ride to Inishmore was definitely an adventure–the young woman who lost her breakfast fortunately missed my shoes–and I would not have missed either the ferry ride or the island itself.We would definitely recommend your tour to others. Thanks for providing us with a wonderful visit to your beautiful country. Gloria and Bob Johnson, Oklahoma City, OK, USA, 7 day Treasure Ireland tour, September 2012
5 day ‘Backroads and Byways’ Tour and Northern tourMy family and I took the Driftwood 5 day Backroads tour with Emmet on July 15th. Please tell Emmet that he totally won the hearts of our 2 teenage granddaughters (Kristina and Emily). They think he is their favourite person in the whole world. Plus, they both loved learning the history of the places we visited because he is such a good story teller! He is the best!!!! Jeanna Murphy 5 day Backroads &Byways Tour, July 2013 First, I need to thank you for your most kind consideration about my husband Dan and his fall at the Grand Canal Hotel in Dublin. You and Mark and your whole team were just so considerate and professional, caring, all of the best attributes that I can imagine. Thank you and your team for helping us to join up with the tour later on the 16th. Despite Daniel’s injury, he still enjoyed his trip. We both loved it actually. Mark, our guide, was knowledgeable, humorous and kind. We loved everything about the tour itinerary (which was flexible according to interests). It was our good fortune to find Driftwood/Vagabond tours.You should be very proud of your company and your wonderful tour guide. The van was comfortable. The sights were amazing. We just absolutely loved it and will recommend and re-recommend. Congratulations to you! Suzanne and Dan Hughes 5 day Backroads &Byways Tour, September 2013 It was a great tour. Memory lane and new ground for me. Lovely to see Connemara again. We were very well looked after and choice of hotels/B & Bs and restored mansions was very comfortable indeed. Plenty of walks through lovely gardens and countryside despite some windy, wet weather. Paddy of course kept us in check and looked after us very well indeed. He went to a lot of trouble one evening, when I dropped my visa card in a shop that we had stopped at, by going back to the shop and luckily for me it had been found by one of the shop staff……………. so I slept OK that night…. Phew! Many thanks for including me on such an enjoyable tour with an interesting and pleasant group. Evelyn Tait 5DWN 12th May 2013 Sally and I enjoyed our Northern Ireland Driftwood Tour. Mark was a very competent guide. He talked non-stop, with so many tales and historical information, poems, songs. His willingness to oblige any request was appreciated. He could also drive the bus well, and demonstrated his prowess in many tight spots on the narrow streets and lanes. We were very well looked after with regard to accommodation. Some was quaintly Irish and the recommendations for places to have our meals was always great. There was a good variety of the aspects of Ireland for us to enjoy. Luckily we did not need our raincoats, as the weather was warm and sunny. How lucky were we!!! Thank you again for a most enjoyable trip. Jennifer Saad 5 day Driftwood Northern Island tour, September 2013 The tour was fantastic and we enjoyed every moment of it. Will highly recommend your company to anyone who should ask my opinion of tour companies of Ireland. Mark is a gem of a guy and a great asset to you and your business. We plan on coming back to Ireland and using Vagabond as our guide in the not too distant future and of course hoping Mark will be behind the wheel of the coach!!!! Linda and Cliff Hodson, 5 day Northern Island tour, June 2013. We had an amazing time and enjoyed every minute of our tour – it’s hard to say what our favorite adventure was…the rope bridge, the neolithic stone formations…the view of the ocean. It was all amazing and I have nothing but great things to say about Vagabond Tours. Thank you to both you and Paddy for making our Ireland vacation a memorable one. So memorable in fact we are going to try and make it again next June. Jan M. Weiss, 5 day Northern Island tour, June 2013 I’m writing to let you know what a wonderful time my dad and I had on our 5 day ‘Backroads and Byways’ tour with Paddy. This was the first group tour we’ve ever done and I will heartily recommend Vagabond and Driftwood to my friends and family. The tour far exceeded our expectations. The hotels, route, van, and itinerary were all better than we had even hoped – but my dad and I both agree that the trip was made truly perfect by our guide, Paddy. I can’t imagine anyone else making us feel so comfortable, teaching us so much, or maintaining his level of enthusiasm and good humor throughout. Paddy is an excellent driver, teacher, story-teller, and guide. His good cheer was absolutely unflappable. Honestly, he seemed to have as much fun as we did and I got the impression that he really enjoys his job. I appreciated his flexibility in catering to our group’s diverse interests, his heartfelt concern for a tour member who was under the weather for a few days, and his inexhaustible knowledge of everything Irish – from the history, to the language, to the best places to eat. I see from other reviews that all your tour guides receive exemplary praise, but really our trip wouldn’t have been the same without Paddy. My dad is still talking about him and what a wonderful time we had thanks to his expertise. Thanks so much for developing these fantastic small-group tours of the beautiful emerald isle. You provide a truly unique way to experience Ireland to the fullest. Liz Byrne, 5 day Backroads & Byways tour, May 2013. I just wanted to take a moment to tell you how FANTASTIC my experience with Driftwood tours was. I had a marvelous time! Emmett is a supreme tour guide – smart, witty, personable, efficient, accommodating. You can tell that he truly LOVES Ireland and his job. I especially appreciated his level of knowledge about the history, mythology and archaeology of Ireland. I was not expecting to learn as much as I did! I have been recommending your company to all my friends and I will most assuredly be a repeat customer in the future. In a few years when she’s older, I’d like to bring my daughter on a Vagabond trip. I think she would really enjoy experiencing Ireland that way. Thank you so much for making my first trip oversees such a gratifying and amazing experience. Cheers!! Susanna Hill, 5 day Backroads & Byways tour, June 2013. I was SO happy I had found your tour. I cannot praise Dee and her hard work enough. I have been driving for 40 years and I cannot stress enough what an Excellent driver she is. Thanks for providing such a great tour. America V. Oujevolk, 5 day Backroads & Byways tour, April 2013. Mark Doherty did (and is doing) a great job on the tour. We thoroughly enjoyed our 5-day tour. We’ll have to do the northern loop next time. Ted & Faith McMichael, 5 day Backroads and Byways tour, July 2013. We’re now back from Ireland after having had a fantastic time with Driftwood Tours. We were surprised to find there were only four of us on the tour (only two one day) and were delighted to find the coach had been down-sized to suit. Accommodation was right up to scratch and the places we visited were everything we expected. Even the weather was reasonable! Our guide Brendan was a treasure – a really nice guy with good local knowledge who took advantage of the small coach to show us places other tours would never hear of. Nothing was too much trouble for him. We learned a lot and enjoyed every minute of it. We’ll certainly recommend Driftwood or Vagabond Tours to any friends thinking of visiting Ireland. While I’m about it, your feedback was excellent too from the first enquiry, even after we’d handed over the funds! We were well informed in advance and there were no unpleasant surprises. Well done all round. Best regards Jim and Anne McEwen 5 day ‘Backroads and Byways’ Tour (south west Ireland), August. 2012 Hello! Rob! Do you recall the 4 “spritely ladies” (Danny’s nickname for us) that took your tour almost one year ago now? Bernadette and her family has moved to Abingdon, Va. and this is one of many pics that she’s sent to me….claiming she’s found a wee bit of Ireland in America…. We still daydream and talk about our GREAT experience with the Driftwood adventure. I hope that you are continuing to PROSPER!!! I LOVE the capitalist country that I live in and I am NOT interested in all of us being “equal”… let those that can become wealthy (legally) go for it! Whew! where did that soapbox come from??!! HA Best Wishes….Mary Holt, Bernadette, Leslie and Saundra. ‘Backroads and Byways’ Tour (south west Ireland), 2011 My mum has just got back from her Driftwood Tour TODAY and wanted me to email straight away to say thank you and to let you know what a fantastic time she had. It was her first time as a solo traveler and she chose Ireland as a trial run on ‘home ground’ being from Dublin as she is, though living in the UK for many years. She wanted to tell you how FANTASTIC Brendan the tour guide was and wanted to say how knowledgeable, funny, friendly and professional he was and how he made the tour even better. She loved everything about it – The guide, the activities, the quality of the accommodation and how friendly the atmosphere was.Though she is Irish she has not spent much time in the west and she couldn’t believe how beautiful her own country was. Now she’s done it once she’s got the bug and wished she had booked for the 12 day tour – but she will be back to do that at some point! So because she had such a great first solo travel experience with you guys, you have just opened up a whole world of travel opportunity for her so thank you again. I handled all of the booking and found your emails super helpful which helped me to get mum to the Grand Canal Hotel for an easy start to her trip – so thanks from me too! I did lots of research into other tours and I’m really glad I chose you! Look out for my mum again! All best wishes, Caroline McDonald, 5 day ‘Backroads and Byways’ Tour (south west Ireland), Sept. 2012 I wanted to let you know that we had a wonderful time and your tour guide Kevin was terrific. The reason for the tour was for my mother’s 80th birthday and it far surpassed what I expected. I will certainly recommend Driftwoods tours for anyone who is heading to Ireland. I just wish you had tours in other countries because I would not hesitate to take a tour with Vagabond again. Thank you for making a memorable vacation for myself, mother, sister and daughter. Mary Ellen Bridge, 5 day ‘Backroads and Byways’ Tour (south west Ireland), October 2012 Brian & Livvia Goff – Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, USA, 7 day tour, 2011
Just wanted to drop you a note and let you know that our recent 7 day tour with Paula was absolutely wonderful! A+ all the way! Paula and Livia and I hit it off wonderfully and ended up having a king-sized helping of CRAIC! Goof fun, great scenery, EXCELLENT historical references and time-lines, great choices as to what to do during the day or upcoming days choices and, the pub and grub was always top notch. There was a great mixture of sightseeing, free time, hiking and general hanging our with Paula that made our time there and with the tour exceedingly wonderful. I will highly recommend this tour and your company to all who will listen. As far as Paula goes, what a treasure you have in being to send her out on the tours as the guide! She is thoughtful, a good listener, willing to bend and flex to meet our requests, liked to engage us as to what we thought and also did a lot of comparison and contrast of different Irish cultures and American cultures… Hope to see you again some day!Sandi and Bobby Davenport May 2011
Pat is so knowledgeable about Ireland. His love of his country shows in everything he says and does. He got along very well with all of us on the tour……he has a wonderful sense of humor, compassion and sense of fair play. Patrick is a wonderful driver. He was careful on the road and never hesitated to stop if there was something special we wanted to see. He made sure that there was a safe place to pull into and was always concerned about our safety. He always called ahead to make sure that our plans for the day could be met……..because Patrick was Irish made it all the more special. He would explain some things to us in Gaelic and then translate those same words into English for us. He showed up each morning with such enthusiasm and energy and it lasted throughout the day………we had time for ourselves but we all enjoyed the guided information more…….we loved his Irish accent and hearty laugh. He even got us all singing together one afternoon:) We will miss him and think of him often. The Vagabond Driftwood tour was the best!! I would not want to see Ireland any other way and will tell everyone about this tour. Best wishes to you and please pass along our sincere gratitude to Patrick. Thanks again.Kate Orlet Schuering, June 2011
Thank you so much for all your help with our Driftwood trip. It was really wonderful and that was largely due to your generosity of spirit. My Mom had such a wonderful experience, which was the whole purpose of the trip and for the rest of us, it was the trip of a lifetime. We will always treasure our memories of being with Mom in your beautiful country. Thank you once more. Larry Connelly of Parry Sound, Canada 5 and 7 day tour, May 2010
I’m repatriated to Canada and have made it back to my home Town after a grand tour of Ireland. I’m bragging to family and friends that I had put together an exceptional trip and emphasizing how smart I was to have signed on for the Vagabond 5 day NI tour and the 7 day World Tour of Ireland. An outstanding feature of the tours for me was the leaders. Kevin led the tours I was on for nine and a half of the days and freely shared with us the people, history, legends, anecdotes, customs, language, music and more. Jean led the group for the final two and a half days. Isn’t she a darling’? Her charm and enthusiasm in sharing her information with the group is a memorable component of the tours. The tours were a full and active two weeks. By my count I was in 23 or 24 of the 32 Counties in both the south and north. Even before leaving Ireland I was rethinking my travel agenda over the next year or two and plan on a revisit next spring to spend two or three weeks in Counties Kerry, Clare and Galway, particularly Killarney National Park, the Dingle Peninsula and The Burren. May you have continued success with Vagabond Tours. Best wishes and good health to you, Jean and Kevin.Dov & Ricky Yarden, Israel 5 day tour, May 2010
Let us begin by saying “Thank you!”. Our week of travelling with Vagabond around South West Ireland was wonderful. Our guides – Mark and Jean (both of whom have obviously kissed the Blarney stone too many times!) – were really fun to be with. They imparted loads of information, sang on demand and were very accommodating with our requests. Our group was a great mix of people that allowed us to share and enjoy the experiences together. You are also to be complimented on the exceptional job you did with the weather! I now have hours of work ahead of me in editing the 5500 pictures that I photographed around your beautiful country. I’ll send you a link when the album is complete…. Thanks againBranka & Zoran Pavlovic, Serbia 7 and 5 day tours, August 2010
Well, we have to say that we were very much satisfied with both Tours and we enjoyed a lot all what we passed throughout as well as the accommodation, places, sites, vehicles, and of course our tour’s Guide (all 3 of them). Finally, the core of your idea to create such kind of sight-seeing Ireland is really remarkable and we should, no doubt, recommend it to any of our friends who might be a good potential to explore it as we done. Thanks a lot for making us an opportunity to see your country in a very unique way. It is wonderful !