Cycling and Walking tours in Ireland

Connemara to Cork Self Drive Tour

Prices from

€795.00

Duration

8days

Difficulty
1

DRIVING TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

  • Experience magnificent natural beauty including Europe’s highest sea cliffs, the Cliffs of Moher, Killarney National Park and the vast, empty beaches of windswept, white sand along the route of this driving vacation.
  • Engage with the warm, welcoming people of this area as you witness their daily lives in towns, villages, remote communities and in the unique setting of the Atlantic islands. 
  • Visit the World Heritage site at Dun Aonghusa on Inishmore Island with evidence of settlement from as early as 1100BC.
  • Enjoy traditional Irish music, song and dance at its best in the cosy pubs of Connemara, Doolin and Dingle

Conor’s favourite visitor attraction: I can never quite comprehend the scale and resilience of Dun Aonghusa stone fort on Inishmore. That it was built by the hard labour of the island people so long ago and stood the test of time, weather and the Atlantic Ocean amazes me.

Check out this video on driving the Wild Atlantic Way to see what is instore for you! The Porsche is not included in the tour!!


Your Tour in brief

Tour essentials:

 

This is an 8 day (7 night) driving tour in Ireland starting any day from April to October.

 

The tour starts in the village of Leenane in Connemara, Co Galway but you will collect your hire car at Dublin or Cork airports. The tour finishes in Cork.

Equipment and information:

 

Manual compact car including CDW insurance (with excess), Theft protection, unlimited mileage, VAT, airport & locations fees.

 

Drivers must be at least 25 years of age, full and clean licence for at least 2 years compulsory

 

All extras including extra insurance cover, gps, additional driver, automatic option, baby/child seat etc must be paid directly by the driver on arrival.

 

Full route notes and map of the area are also provided and explained to you.

Hospitality:

 

You can choose from two accommodation options - 3* hotels or approved B&Bs and guesthouses where a full Irish breakfast is included for you on each morning.

Transfers and travel:

 

Return ferry tickets to Inishbofin and Inishmore islands

 

Further information on getting to/from Ireland can be found here

 

   

Itinerary

Day 1

Arrival to Dublin/Cork Airport

Arrive at Dublin Airport and collect your rental car. Your first journey is to the starting point of your driving tour in the picturesque village of Leenane in Connemara, Co Galway. Conor or Gabriel will meet you either on the evening of arrival or the following morning (depending on your arrival time) to go through your itinerary and answer any questions you have about your tour. Your first night's accommodation will be here in Leenane village which sits nestled at the head of Killary Fjord and at the foot of the Maamturk mountains. Despite its size, you will have the choice of excellent local dining, traditional pubs and the chance to meet locals and visitors alike. In the morning you will wake to sweeping views over Killary Fjord and the mountains which dominate this special place.

Day 2

Leenane to Clifden

Starting off on your journey south along the Wild Atlantic Way you will immediately see why this route just has to be explored. Leaving the shores of the Fjord behind you, you will take the road inland through the Inagh Valley, a spectacular valley flanked on either side by soaring mountains reflected in the lake below. There are few houses along this road and apart from the occasional tractor or intrepid sightseer you will have all this peace and beauty to yourself. As you continue on your way to Clifden you will include a detour via the picturesque fishing villages of Cashel, Roundstone and Ballyconneelly, stopping off at the Connemara Smokehouse where delicious local smoked seafood is produced using traditional methods. You are in the heart of Connemara here with its ancient stone walls, endless windswept golden beaches and rocky landscape. You will spend the night in Clifden town, known locally as the 'Capital of Connemara'. 

Day 3

Sky Road and Inishbofin

Leaving the charming winding streets of Clifden behind you, you will take the famous Sky Road along the coast. Stop at the viewing point at the highest part of the road and you will be wowed by the panoramic view of this part of the Atlantic coast and its offshore islands. Your destination is the small fishing village of Cleggan to catch the morning passenger ferry to Inishbofin. You will be leaving the car behind but exploring the island by foot is much more rewarding. The chance to witness and experience traditional island life is very special and you will know as soon as you land at the harbour that this is a very different way of life. You will spend the night on the island. Enjoy dining on locally sourced foods including the freshest seafood. Afterwards, find a cosy corner in one of the island pubs for a music session and to listen in to the stories of everyday life here.

Day 4

Cliffs of Moher

Take the morning ferry back to the mainland and turn south again towards Galway city along the Wild Atlantic Way as you continue touring Ireland by car. On your way through Connemara we would highly recommend you take the time to visit Kylemore Abbey which is directly on your route. This Gothic abbey is one of Connemara's most striking and famed attractions offering tours of the abbey, a visitor centre and magnificent Victorian walled gardens. The Wild Atlantic Way brings you to today’s destination further south in Co Clare - the coastal village of Doolin. When you arrive in Co Clare you will visit the impressive Cliffs of Moher, Europe's highest sea cliffs. A walk along the edge of the cliffs offers incredible views over the coastline as it drops vertically into the roiling Atlantic waters.  You will spend the night in Doolin, a village which is known for its world-class traditional Irish musicians and regular music sessions in the pubs and bars.

Day 5

Inishmore

From Doolin the passenger ferry takes you to the largest of the three Aran Islands, Inishmore. This is an ideal daytrip and as soon as you step off the boat you will know you are in another world. The island is starkly beautiful and dominated by the influence of the sea and its long history, as evidenced by over 50 different monuments of Christian, pre-Christian and Celtic origin. The highlight of any trip to the island is the World Heirtage Site at Dun Aonghasa. A semi-circular fort on the very edge of the Atlantic-facing cliffs with evidence of dwellings there from as early as 1100 BC, it will amaze you with its size and resilience. Transport on the island can be via taxi, horse and cart tours or if you would rather be independent you can hire bikes. You will return for a second night in Doolin.

Day 6

Dingle

Your drive today is further south along the Wild Atlantic Way to the town of Dingle, in Co Kerry. The Dingle peninsula is a much-visited region, pushing out into the deep Atlantic waters from the south west corner of Ireland. Dingle town on the southern side of it is a buzzing, colourful town bursting with music, art, great food and an occasional cosy pub! The town has managed to maintain a traditional look and feel and a warm welcoming atmosphere while accommodating its many Irish and overseas visitors every year. At the tip of the Dingle peninsula is Slea Head where you can follow a loop walk to explore the wild coastline of this western outpost. Enjoy a night in Dingle and be sure to experience some of that wonderful atmosphere.

Day 7

Killarney National Park and Cork

The final day of your driving tour on the Wild Atlantic Way will bring you from Dingle to Cork City with a stop off to explore Killarney National Park. An area of preserved woodland, lakes, forestry and waterfalls south and west of the town of Killarney it is ideal for walking or simply enjoying the natural beauty all around you. Muckross House and Gardens, a nineteenth century estate house is one of the most popular and impressive features of the park and well worth a visit.

You will spend the last night of your driving vacation in Ireland in the Cork area.

Day 8

Departure

Drive back to Dublin airport or Cork airport, return your rental car and depart on your onward journey.

 


Accommodation

The B&B option means you will get to stay in a family home where the personal touch and attention to detail is second to none. A true Irish welcome awaits you as well as home-cooked food, comfort and a taste of traditional Irish life.

While you may be staying in part of the family home this does not mean that you will not have privacy and high standards of accommodation you require. Cosy rooms, modern facilities and care and attention are what these properties excel in.

When you select this tour you will have the chance to stay in either hotels or B&B/guesthouse accommodation. The 3* hotels that have been selected are all comfortable, well-appointed properties which also boast their own character and style. You may find yourself in a historic manor house hotel, one with a modern twist or get a 'room with a view' overlooking a shimmering lake or a golden beach.

However they all share the same high standards of hospitality and service and will guarantee you a warm welcome, good food and a relaxing experience after your day on the road.


Price


B&B

Room Type

Price

Double/Twin/Triple

€795.00

B&B Single

€940.00

B&B Solo

€1,295.00

3* Hotel

Room Type

Price

Double/ Twin/ Triple

€995.00

Single

€1,170.00

Solo

€1,495.00


Terms and conditions

To secure your booking, we will request 30% deposit per person. Please note this is a non-refundable payment. The balance payment is due 30 days before the tour starts.

If your tour start date is within 30 days of booking, the full, non-refundable payment is required upon booking.

We do not organise travel to/from Ireland. However there is some useful information on our “Getting To Ireland” page.