Walking vacations in the West and North of Ireland
Conducted by Gerry Collins, a self-styled local expert on the film, the tour re-visits the streets and buildings pictured in the film including the bridge over the River Corrib, Cohan’s Pub and the local church. All tours end at the Quiet Man Cottage, a replica of a simple white-washed dwelling used in the film with similar furnishings and props. Tour members are then randomly selected by Gerry to wear hats or costumes identical to the outfits worn by the characters of the film, and a quick five-minute comic scene is acted out at Gerry’s direction. It’s a clever finale that produces lots of laughs and Kodak moments.
Duration: 35 minutes or more.
More information: tel. 094-954-6089; www.quietman-cong.com/tours.html
Moving over to Northern Ireland, Derry invites visitors to “walk the wall” on a guided tour. And quite a wall it is, too, at 19 feet high and 18 feet thick and extending for one mile around the circumference of the city – considered one of Europe’s finest example walled cities.
From its high vantage point, you get close-up views of the original four gates, canons, ramparts, bastions and prime sites within the walls such as The Diamond, St. Columb’s Cathedral and the Derry Craft Village, and outside the walls such as the Guildhall, Tower Museum, and St. Eugene’s Cathedral.
One of Derry’s best-versed guides, Ronan McNamara, amazes people with his endless stories of Derry history and folklore. He also charms visitors because he does not fit the stereotype of Irish guide. Ronan, whose mother is Chinese and father is Irish, adds a bit of Oriental flair to each tour. Once you see Derry through Ronan’s eyes on a McNamara’s Famous Guided Walking Tour, you will never forget it. It becomes easy to see why Phil Coulter wrote the award-winning song, “The Town I Loved So Well.”
Duration: 60 minutes
More information: tel. 078-8996-3858; www.derryvisitor.com
Pubs Pubs are the theme of one of Belfast’s most popular walking tours – Historical Pub Tours. Visit six of Belfast's most historic pubs, led by a local "pub expert" guide, Judy Crawford. Visits include Kelly's Cellars, McHugh's, The Morning Star, White's Tavern, The Blackthorn, Duke of York and more. Duration: 2 hours. Departs from the Crown Dining Rooms, upstairs at the Crown Bar, Great Victoria Street. More information: tel. 028-9268-3665; www.belfastpubtours.com