“My husband, Brian, and I met Fran at the Big E last fall. We were immediately drawn to her smile and her open, friendly greeting. While shopping at her booth full of her beautiful sweater designs, I noticed a flyer for her personalized tours of Ireland. I have visited Ireland many times, but Brian had never been, and I wanted him to experience my favorite place on earth – but I did not want to spend another two weeks driving a car around Ireland. So here was Fran, with personalized itineraries and a DRIVER! The promise of a small group with a knowledgable, charming guide and driver was perfect. We were in!
Leading up to the trip, Fran was always in touch, asking for any special requests – towns to visit, activities, personal food preferences – everything to make our trip all we wanted it to be. We also had the opportunity to email with the other travelers, finding common interests, and getting a chance to know a bit about them.
Arriving in Ireland, we were incredibly lucky that our group of 9 meshed so well. We shared the same sense of humor, but brought varied backgrounds and experiences, so we always had things to talk about while traveling. Fran had every detail planned, but still was open to last-minute changes when we found something fun or interesting along the way. We saw so many off-the-beaten-track treats: ancient churches, hidden waterfalls, sights the giant buses can’t reach. And, many times, it seems that Fran knows everyone in Ireland! Between sites, we had so much fun on our bus – Fran knows the history of her beautful country, and shares stories and songs. Funny, fanciful, tragic – all the stories of our ancestors. Our bus driver, Martin, was amazing, and so fun! He has a great voice, and treated us to many traditional songs along the way, and got us safely to every destination (even when we begged him to take us down some very skinny roads). Fran took such good care of us. Every day, fresh water and her creme cookies, and sometimes a pharmacy stop when someone wasn’t feeling well. We loved every minute of our trip, and have wonderful memories. When I think of Fran I always break into a big smile! We are already planning to go back. I recommend Fran and Saiorse Tours without reservation!”
Maureen and Brian Finn, Massachusetts
“In May of last year I was fortunate enough to have gone on a truly wonderful enchanting tour of the Wild Atlantic Way in Ireland with Saoirse Tours owned by Fran Ryan. Fran who lives in Dingle has an amazing knowledge of her country and you learn so much about this beautiful country. She makes you feel like family and so very welcome. Our group was 9 and she made us all feel so special . You leave feeling you have found a new friend in Ireland whose main concern is for you to truly have a wonderful memorable trip wanting to return or never leave the beauty of Ireland and its people. Cannot wait to return.”
“When asked about my tour of Ireland with Fran Ryan, I always say, ” it was like having a REALLY good and helpful friend to graciously show me her personal and beloved homeland.” Fran went out of her way to make sure she met any particular wishes the 8 people in her charge might have, while we were traveled the Wild Atlantic Way. I even tried some things I didn’t know I wanted to try, (Ie. Horse riding in a beautiful valley! I felt really pleased with myself afterwards as I hadn’t been on a horse for @50 years!) This was my first experience travelling on a tour, and the first trip since my husband passed, but I have to think that this organized, yet personalized trip was unique if compared to other tours. I brought a friend from home, and made new ones along the way. I loved the music that was everywhere!I danced a jig, saw the champion step dancer of Ireland, I laughed and soaked in beauty everyday.”
Carol Cranston C.T.
“My husband and I had the good fortune of booking our ‘trip of a lifetime’ with Fran Ryan (Saoirse Tours) to celebrate our fifteenth wedding anniversary in Ireland. Little did we know at the time how very lucky we were to have made the decision to go with Saoirse Tours and most especially having Fran as our tour guide.
Fran is a delightful, passionate, and heart-felt woman with deep insider knowledge of Ireland, its people, and many of its mysteries. She took our group to many off the beaten path places and we enjoyed some truly sacred experiences along the way, too. We are so very grateful to Fran for making every aspect of our dreams come true and giving us so many priceless memories!
If you are ever considering a trip to Ireland, I highly recommend booking with Saoirse Tours. You will enjoy every instant! Best trip ever.”
Merrybeth Lannan and David Wharton
“I’ve been to Ireland three times, the first two being large group tours. The last one was with Saoirse Tours and it was the best experience and the way to go. I’d do it again. We had a group of 8 passengers, plus Fran and the mini coach driver. Fran puts together a wonderful itinerary that encompasses must-see and historical destinations, but also some surprises along the way. We stopped at a farm with sheep, baby lambs, goats and donkeys and fed them. Because of the unusual hot weather, we stopped at two beaches, one the popular and beautiful Inch Beach. We gassed up the mini coach and picked up sandwiches and had a picnic outside of a castle. In Dingle, we had the option to go bv horseback riding or kayaking. I chose kayaking and it was spectacular. We never felt rushed while staying on our itinerary and timeline. My friend and I wanted to go to Dublin on our own after the tour ended and Fran took care of making hotel reservations for us and arrangements for a bus from Adare to Dublin. Fran is very knowledgeable, personable, and the best tour director.”
Laura Mirmino Jones C.T.
“Our trip to Ireland was a dream come true for me and my family. It was everything we expected, and more! Our host Fran Saoirse was invaluable in that she showed us an Ireland we would not have seen otherwise. She arranged our whole trip including transportation, hotels, B&Bs, dining, and entertainment. She helped get my brother onto some exclusive golf courses that he would not have been possible without her connections. Music was a highlight of our trip and Fran not only entertained us along our travels with her accordion and song, but provided us entry to some very talented musical events that the general public was not privy to. We had 11 and 13 year old girls with us and Fran ensured that they were entertained as well. She arranged activities for the children and brought her cute puppy dog to accompany us on some of our adventures; huge fun for the kids! She educated us in Ireland’s rich history and pointed us where to shop so we got the best quality of Irish goods for the most reasonable prices…Fran is bargain conscious and overall saved us monies as well as enriched our trip over and above what we ever could have experienced on our own. We’ve actually become friends with Fran and plan to stay in touch. Recently I asked my husband where he wanted to go this year on vacation….he said emphatically “Ireland!”. I highly attribute his fondness for the “Green Isle” to Fran’s meticulous planning, incredible resourcefulness, and fun personality. I highly recommend using her as your guide to Ireland. Thankfully of Irish heritage.”
Sandy Shea Davis, Savannah, Georgia USA
“Saoirse Tours I celebrated my 50th birthday on the Emerald Isle!! It had always been my dream to explore the country of my ancestors. With Fran’s help, it became a reality. I had gotten Fran’s name from a friend of a friend, who assured me that Fran was the tour guide for me! I was not disappointed. Fran not only was accommodating, she was a true treasure to find. Our trip was exactly what I had envisioned and then some! Fran shared with us not only the beauty of the Irish, but her history, her people and not to be forgotten, the breathtaking scenery. I requested “off the beaten path”, and that is what I received. The B& B’s were reasonably priced, the castle was wonderful, and the local pubs & dining establishment were welcoming. Saoirse Tours is a perfect fit. WE Americans, are always searching for the “Deal” of the day.. Saoirse Tours is the deal, with a big bonus.. Friendship! I plan to use Fran again when I return.”
“We had the best time ever, you did a fantastic job, we loved it.”
Alexis Mahilo, Cleveland, Ohio