Challenging Connemara Cycling Tour

Challenging Connemara Cycling Tour

PRICES FROM

€725.00

DURATION

7 days

DIFFICULTY

PRICES FROM

€725.00

DURATION

7 days

Challenging Connemara Cycling Tour

  • Take up the challenge of greater daily cycling distances with averages of 70km per day. Shorter options are available should you wish to drop down a gear on any day!
  • Cycle through deep, sparsely populated valleys and emerge to a coastline strewn with islands at Clew Bay.
  • Enjoy a day to explore the heritage town of Westport. While there choose to follow the pilgrim route up Croagh Patrick mountain or learn the history of this eighteenth century planned town at Westport Estate House. 
  • Spend a night in the village of Cong, renowned as the setting for the 1952 John Ford film, The Quiet Man, starring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara. 

Gabriel’s favourite view:

Reaching the end of the Doolough Valley, climbing the hill you will come to a monument. Turn to look back over the valley with its deep, dark lake and almost vertical sides. This view changes for me every time I see it.

YOUR TOUR IN BRIEF

Tour Essentials:

This is a 7-day (6 night) tour starting every Wednesday from April to October.
The tour starts and finishes in the small village of Leenane, Co Galway. 

Your Challenging Connemara Tour comprises average cycling distances of 70km per day with occasional hills. Longer and shorter options are available on most days. 

Equipment and information:

Your touring bike, helmet, front handlebar bag, puncture repair kit and lock are all included.

Full route notes and an Ordnance Survey Ireland map of the area are also provided and explained to you.

Hospitality:

Your accommodation each night is provided in 3* hotels or approved B&Bs and guesthouses, where you will enjoy a full Irish breakfast on each morning.

Your luggage will be transferred every day to your next accommodation..

Extras:

Entrance tickets for Kylemore Abbey

Upgrade to a hybrid bike with front suspension - €70 per bike

Electric bike hire - €195 per bike

Side panniers - €20 per bike

Alternative start days - €50 extra per person.

 

Tour Essentials

This is a 7-day (6 night) tour starting every Wednesday from April to October.
The tour starts and finishes in the small village of Leenane, Co Galway. 

Your Challenging Connemara Tour comprises average cycling distances of 70km per day with occasional hills. Longer and shorter options are available on most days. 

Equipment and information

Your touring bike, helmet, front handlebar bag, puncture repair kit and lock are all included.

Full route notes and an Ordnance Survey Ireland map of the area are also provided and explained to you.

Hospitality

Your accommodation each night is provided in 3* hotels or approved B&Bs and guesthouses, where you will enjoy a full Irish breakfast on each morning.

Your luggage will be transferred every day to your next accommodation..

Extras

Entrance tickets for Kylemore Abbey

Upgrade to a hybrid bike with front suspension - €70 per bike

Electric bike hire - €195 per bike

Side panniers - €20 per bike

Alternative start days - €50 extra per person.

 

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

ITINERARY

map

Your starting point for the Challenging Connemara Tour is in the picturesque village of Leenane, nestled among the Maamturk Mountains, at the head of Killary Fjord. Your route notes and maps will be waiting for you at your accommodation to study overnight. Depending on your time of arrival Conor or Gabriel will meet you to allocate bikes and equipment, otherwise this will be done the following morning. Despite its size there is always a buzz of conversation and craic in the village’s two pubs and a choice of restaurants serving great food from locally-sourced ingredients. 

Today, the first day of your cycling holiday in Ireland, brings you to the eighteenth century, heritage town of Westport, Co Mayo. This spectacular and less-travelled route will see you cycle along the shores of Killary Fjord to Aasleagh Falls, through the steep-sided Delphi and Doolough Valleys and on to the coastal market town of Louisburgh.  The final part of your journey hugs the Clew Bay coastline in the shadow of the holy mountain of Croagh Patrick to bring you to Westport town (56km with longer and shorter options). You will spend the next two nights in Westport, where you will be spoiled for choice with dining, entertainment and activity options.

Distance:

60 km

A day to explore Westport with so much to see and do! Today you have several options ranging from climbing the holy mountain of Croagh Patrick which has been a pilgrim’s route since pre-Christian times, to visiting Westport House, the ancestral home and estate of the Marquis of Sligo. If you wish to cycle through the surrounding farmland and coastal regions you can take to the 42km Great Western Greenway. This follows the route of the once-vital Westport to Achill railway line which closed in 1937. Alternatively, you can cycle back along the coastline of Clew Bay to Louisburgh, visiting the fourteenth century Murrisk Abbey along the way.

You will leave Westport today for your next destination, the village of Cong in Co Mayo. Made famous by the filming of the 1952 John Ford film, The Quiet Man, and by the presence of the world-renowned Ashford Castle Hotel, it is a quaint and interesting place to visit. Departing after breakfast you will cycle via Aghagower, Tourmakeady, Lough Mask, Finny, and Clonbur and into Cong village (70km). This is a wonderful, long cycle through a variety of scenery - hills, trout lakes, winding country roads and farming villages. You will stay the night in Cong. Here you will find the best of traditional and contemporary cuisine in the restaurants as well as live music in many pubs.

Distance:

60 km

Today you continue your cycle southwards from Cong along the shores of Lough Corrib, Ireland’s largest lake, and renowned for fishing and boating. At the end of the lake is tiny Maam village from which you will cross a small mountain pass to Maam Cross. The area around Maam and Maam Cross is surrounded by hills and deep valleys and is definitely a place to pause and simply gaze around you. Your journey continues to another breathtaking Connemara valley, the Inagh Valley which is sparsely populated with the road winding along beside Lough Inagh. Your Connemara cycle finishes today in Leenane. It is a 90km cycle but you will have options to make it shorter if you wish. You will stay in the lovely village of Leenane for the next two nights.

Distance:

ENTRE 65 ET 90 KMS

There is plenty to see today as you cycle west to Kylemore Abbey, Connemara National Park, Renvyle Castle and finally back to Leenane (50km). The longer option includes a cycle further south to the fishing village of Cleggan and Streamstown Bay (80km). You will visit the world famous Kylemore Abbey, a gothic lakeside castle which is also the site of one of Ireland's finest gardens, a six-acre Victorian walled garden. It was created by Mitchell Henry in tandem with the building of Kylemore Castle in 1867. Connemara National Park entrance is in Letterfrack village where you can climb all or part of Diamond Hill or simply visit the excellent visitor centre and tea rooms. Return to Leenane tonight. 

Distance:

DE 50 À 80 KMS

Breakfast and depart from Leenane on your onward journey.

Your starting point for the Challenging Connemara Tour is in the picturesque village of Leenane, nestled among the Maamturk Mountains, at the head of Killary Fjord. Your route notes and maps will be waiting for you at your accommodation to study overnight. Depending on your time of arrival Conor or Gabriel will meet you to allocate bikes and equipment, otherwise this will be done the following morning. Despite its size there is always a buzz of conversation and craic in the village’s two pubs and a choice of restaurants serving great food from locally-sourced ingredients. 

Today, the first day of your cycling holiday in Ireland, brings you to the eighteenth century, heritage town of Westport, Co Mayo. This spectacular and less-travelled route will see you cycle along the shores of Killary Fjord to Aasleagh Falls, through the steep-sided Delphi and Doolough Valleys and on to the coastal market town of Louisburgh.  The final part of your journey hugs the Clew Bay coastline in the shadow of the holy mountain of Croagh Patrick to bring you to Westport town (56km with longer and shorter options). You will spend the next two nights in Westport, where you will be spoiled for choice with dining, entertainment and activity options.

Distance:

60 km

A day to explore Westport with so much to see and do! Today you have several options ranging from climbing the holy mountain of Croagh Patrick which has been a pilgrim’s route since pre-Christian times, to visiting Westport House, the ancestral home and estate of the Marquis of Sligo. If you wish to cycle through the surrounding farmland and coastal regions you can take to the 42km Great Western Greenway. This follows the route of the once-vital Westport to Achill railway line which closed in 1937. Alternatively, you can cycle back along the coastline of Clew Bay to Louisburgh, visiting the fourteenth century Murrisk Abbey along the way.

You will leave Westport today for your next destination, the village of Cong in Co Mayo. Made famous by the filming of the 1952 John Ford film, The Quiet Man, and by the presence of the world-renowned Ashford Castle Hotel, it is a quaint and interesting place to visit. Departing after breakfast you will cycle via Aghagower, Tourmakeady, Lough Mask, Finny, and Clonbur and into Cong village (70km). This is a wonderful, long cycle through a variety of scenery - hills, trout lakes, winding country roads and farming villages. You will stay the night in Cong. Here you will find the best of traditional and contemporary cuisine in the restaurants as well as live music in many pubs.

Distance:

60 km

Today you continue your cycle southwards from Cong along the shores of Lough Corrib, Ireland’s largest lake, and renowned for fishing and boating. At the end of the lake is tiny Maam village from which you will cross a small mountain pass to Maam Cross. The area around Maam and Maam Cross is surrounded by hills and deep valleys and is definitely a place to pause and simply gaze around you. Your journey continues to another breathtaking Connemara valley, the Inagh Valley which is sparsely populated with the road winding along beside Lough Inagh. Your Connemara cycle finishes today in Leenane. It is a 90km cycle but you will have options to make it shorter if you wish. You will stay in the lovely village of Leenane for the next two nights.

Distance:

ENTRE 65 ET 90 KMS

There is plenty to see today as you cycle west to Kylemore Abbey, Connemara National Park, Renvyle Castle and finally back to Leenane (50km). The longer option includes a cycle further south to the fishing village of Cleggan and Streamstown Bay (80km). You will visit the world famous Kylemore Abbey, a gothic lakeside castle which is also the site of one of Ireland's finest gardens, a six-acre Victorian walled garden. It was created by Mitchell Henry in tandem with the building of Kylemore Castle in 1867. Connemara National Park entrance is in Letterfrack village where you can climb all or part of Diamond Hill or simply visit the excellent visitor centre and tea rooms. Return to Leenane tonight. 

Distance:

DE 50 À 80 KMS

Breakfast and depart from Leenane on your onward journey.

ACCOMMODATION

B&B/3* ACCOMMODATION

When you select this tour you will have the chance to stay in either 3* hotels or Bed & Breakfast/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.
Staying in B&B/guesthouse accommodation is a unique experience where very often you are staying in a family home, with your hosts being the owners of the property. You will receive a warm welcome and will have access to plenty of local stories. Best of all you will catch a glimpse into the lives of the local people of the areas through which you travel. Accommodation is warm, cosy and homely and breakfast is home-cooked by your host. 

B&B/3* ACCOMMODATION

When you select this tour you will have the chance to stay in either 3* hotels or Bed & Breakfast/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.
Staying in B&B/guesthouse accommodation is a unique experience where very often you are staying in a family home, with your hosts being the owners of the property. You will receive a warm welcome and will have access to plenty of local stories. Best of all you will catch a glimpse into the lives of the local people of the areas through which you travel. Accommodation is warm, cosy and homely and breakfast is home-cooked by your host. 

TOUR DETAILS

ACCOMMODATION

Room TypeLow SeasonHigh Season 
Double/Twin/Triple€725.00€795.00Book now
Single€880.00€960.00Book now
Solo€1,195.00€1,355.00Book now
Displaying 1-3 of 3 results.

LOW SEASON: April, May, September & October

HIGH SEASON: June, July & August

GROUP DISCOUNTS

We offer group discounts when a group size of 4+ is booked online, as part of one order. The discounts, outlined below, are automatically applied during the online booking process:

  • 4/5 people = 5% discount
  • 6 to 9 people = 10% discount
  • 10+ people = 15% discount

What's included

Meals

  • All breakfasts

Transport

  • All luggage transfers from accommodation to accommodation leaving you free to explore at your ease. 
  • We will collect you from Maam Cross bus stop and bring you to Leenane on the day of arrival. You can make your way from Galway city to Maam Cross via Citylink bus www.citylink.ie which has 5 daily buses serving this area, on the Galway-Clifden bus line.
  • We will also bring you back to Maam Cross on the day of departure to connect with the bus to Galway.

Accommodation

  • 6 nights accommodation (includes private en-suite)

BIKES

  • Each bicycle is equipped with a bottle cage, small front handlebar bag, bike rack (with option to add pannier bags).
  • Safety – we provide a helmet (various sizes) and a high visibility jacket for our customer’s safety on the road.
  • Spare tube, repair kit with tyre levers, pump and bike lock are all provided.
  • Cyclists are expected to be able to have a general knowledge of the function of bicycles, i.e. how to change gears, how to brake properly, replacing a slipped chain, changing a flat tyre. Please check out this link if you are looking for few tips.
Sizes: S female, M female and male, L male, XL male
Frame: ALUXX-Grade aluminium
Fork: High Tensile Chromoly steel (w/ low-rider rack mount)
Shock: N/A
Handlebar: Steel, Low Rise
Stem: Giant Sport
Seat post: Giant Sport
Saddle: Giant Connect Upright
Pedals: Giant Sports
Shifters: Shimano ST-EF41 21 Speed
Front mech: Shimano Tourney
Rear mech: Shimano Acera
Brakes: Tektro TK837 linear pull
Brake lever: Shimano EF-41
Tires Giant S-X3 Puncture Protect, 700 x 32 mm
Chain: KMC Z51
Cranks: Shimano FC-TY501 28/38/48
Bottom bracket: Shimano BB-UN26
Rims: Giant GX02 Double Wall Aluminium
Hubs: Joytech
Spokes: Stainless steel
Frame Material: 6061 Aluminium
Frame type: Hardtail
Sizes: S female, M female and male, L male and XL male
Colour: Silver and Red
Fork travel: 63 mm
Wheels Lapierre Double Wall Alloy 32H
Brake calipers Tektro Disc HDC330 Hydraulic
Gears 27 speed
Stem: aluminum threadless
Headset: CH-918 1.1/8'' Steel/Alloy semi integrated
Front Der: Shimano Acera
Crankset: Shimano FCM431E866CSL with chainguard
Rear Der: Shimano Alivio 9 speed
Saddle: Selle Royal Shadow steel rails
Tires: Schwalbe CX comp 37-622 700x35C
Shifter: Shimano Alivio 3x9 speed
Stem: Lapierre adjustable alloy TDS-C217-8 aheadset E: 100mm : 28.6mm
Wheel size 700 C
Chainset type 48-36-26
Front Fork: Suntour NEX 700C disc
Weight: 14.2 kg
Brake Levers: aluminum linear-pull
Handlebar: Lapierre AB-064 Allow W: 660mm R: 20mm : 25.4mm

DIFFICULTY LEVEL

DIFFICULTY Easy

Represents a low level of activity with maximum 35 kms on the bike or 12 kms by foot per day – 3 hours physical activity

DIFFICULTY Medium

Represents a medium level of activity with maximum 50 kms on the bike or 15 kms by foot per day – 4 to 5 hours physical activity

DIFFICULTY Hard

Represents a higher level of activity with maximum 80 kms on the bike or 25 kms by foot per day – 6 to 7 hours physical activity

CUSTOMISE THIS TOUR

You can add extra days or shorten this holiday to suit your needs or schedule.

We are very fortunate to have hundreds of kilometres of magnificent coastal and scenic routes and paths to enjoy. So the options are endless.

We understand that the duration of this tour may not be the ideal amount of time for everyone so if you would like a longer or a shorter version, please do not hesitate to contact us and we will design a custom tour for you to suit your needs.

GETTING TO TOUR START POINT

You can take a Citylink bus or a Gobus  directly from Dublin airport (or from Dublin city centre) to Galway (approx. 3 hours trip) and then a Citylink bus or a Bus Eireann bus from Galway to Maam Cross bus stop (Galway – Clifden line / 50 minutes trip).

For this tour, which starts and finishes in Leenane, a taxi from Maam Cross to Leenane (30 minutes) and from Leenane to Maam Cross will be organised and is included in your tour price (as long as you confirm to us your arrival time to Maam Cross one month prior to arrival).

Please note that the last Citylink bus leaving Galway to Clifden is at 5.30 pm.

Total journey time is approximately 5 hours.

Reviews

Marian

01 Aug 2018

5/5

You are so flexible on the bike. You are free to stop everywhere you want to take pictures, have lunch on a bench close to a loch and if it starts raining you have the opportunity to stop in cute and cosy coffee places for tea and scones until the rain stops. Ireland is a wonderful destination and Connemara adventure tours the best way to explore this beautiful country! The staff is very friendly, helpful and supportive. Thank you for making this journey unforgettable!

James

13 Jun 2018

5/5

You have a great team there. From the booking, bike, B&B's and well laid tour & mapping I cannot think of a better way to see Ireland (in low gear)."

Francis

21 Sep 2017

5/5

We had such a memorable holiday, please pass on our thanks to Geraldine and Mary in Cong who were both fantastic to us. They did a load of washing for us when we arrived wet and muddy and also drove us into town. Such welcoming and helpful ‘hostesses’ made our stay all the more enjoyable. It’s a pity we didn’t have more time.

ACCOMMODATION

Room TypeLow SeasonHigh Season 
Double/Twin/Triple€725.00€795.00Book now
Single€880.00€960.00Book now
Solo€1,195.00€1,355.00Book now
Displaying 1-3 of 3 results.

LOW SEASON: April, May, September & October

HIGH SEASON: June, July & August

GROUP DISCOUNTS

We offer group discounts when a group size of 4+ is booked online, as part of one order. The discounts, outlined below, are automatically applied during the online booking process:

  • 4/5 people = 5% discount
  • 6 to 9 people = 10% discount
  • 10+ people = 15% discount

What's included

Meals

  • All breakfasts

Transport

  • All luggage transfers from accommodation to accommodation leaving you free to explore at your ease. 
  • We will collect you from Maam Cross bus stop and bring you to Leenane on the day of arrival. You can make your way from Galway city to Maam Cross via Citylink bus www.citylink.ie which has 5 daily buses serving this area, on the Galway-Clifden bus line.
  • We will also bring you back to Maam Cross on the day of departure to connect with the bus to Galway.

Accommodation

  • 6 nights accommodation (includes private en-suite)

BIKES

  • Each bicycle is equipped with a bottle cage, small front handlebar bag, bike rack (with option to add pannier bags).
  • Safety – we provide a helmet (various sizes) and a high visibility jacket for our customer’s safety on the road.
  • Spare tube, repair kit with tyre levers, pump and bike lock are all provided.
  • Cyclists are expected to be able to have a general knowledge of the function of bicycles, i.e. how to change gears, how to brake properly, replacing a slipped chain, changing a flat tyre. Please check out this link if you are looking for few tips.
Sizes: S female, M female and male, L male, XL male
Frame: ALUXX-Grade aluminium
Fork: High Tensile Chromoly steel (w/ low-rider rack mount)
Shock: N/A
Handlebar: Steel, Low Rise
Stem: Giant Sport
Seat post: Giant Sport
Saddle: Giant Connect Upright
Pedals: Giant Sports
Shifters: Shimano ST-EF41 21 Speed
Front mech: Shimano Tourney
Rear mech: Shimano Acera
Brakes: Tektro TK837 linear pull
Brake lever: Shimano EF-41
Tires Giant S-X3 Puncture Protect, 700 x 32 mm
Chain: KMC Z51
Cranks: Shimano FC-TY501 28/38/48
Bottom bracket: Shimano BB-UN26
Rims: Giant GX02 Double Wall Aluminium
Hubs: Joytech
Spokes: Stainless steel
Frame Material: 6061 Aluminium
Frame type: Hardtail
Sizes: S female, M female and male, L male and XL male
Colour: Silver and Red
Fork travel: 63 mm
Wheels Lapierre Double Wall Alloy 32H
Brake calipers Tektro Disc HDC330 Hydraulic
Gears 27 speed
Stem: aluminum threadless
Headset: CH-918 1.1/8'' Steel/Alloy semi integrated
Front Der: Shimano Acera
Crankset: Shimano FCM431E866CSL with chainguard
Rear Der: Shimano Alivio 9 speed
Saddle: Selle Royal Shadow steel rails
Tires: Schwalbe CX comp 37-622 700x35C
Shifter: Shimano Alivio 3x9 speed
Stem: Lapierre adjustable alloy TDS-C217-8 aheadset E: 100mm : 28.6mm
Wheel size 700 C
Chainset type 48-36-26
Front Fork: Suntour NEX 700C disc
Weight: 14.2 kg
Brake Levers: aluminum linear-pull
Handlebar: Lapierre AB-064 Allow W: 660mm R: 20mm : 25.4mm

DIFFICULTY LEVEL

DIFFICULTY Easy

Represents a low level of activity with maximum 35 kms on the bike or 12 kms by foot per day – 3 hours physical activity

DIFFICULTY Medium

Represents a medium level of activity with maximum 50 kms on the bike or 15 kms by foot per day – 4 to 5 hours physical activity

DIFFICULTY Hard

Represents a higher level of activity with maximum 80 kms on the bike or 25 kms by foot per day – 6 to 7 hours physical activity

CUSTOMISE THIS TOUR

You can add extra days or shorten this holiday to suit your needs or schedule.

We are very fortunate to have hundreds of kilometres of magnificent coastal and scenic routes and paths to enjoy. So the options are endless.

We understand that the duration of this tour may not be the ideal amount of time for everyone so if you would like a longer or a shorter version, please do not hesitate to contact us and we will design a custom tour for you to suit your needs.

You can take a Citylink bus or a Gobus  directly from Dublin airport (or from Dublin city centre) to Galway (approx. 3 hours trip) and then a Citylink bus or a Bus Eireann bus from Galway to Maam Cross bus stop (Galway – Clifden line / 50 minutes trip).

For this tour, which starts and finishes in Leenane, a taxi from Maam Cross to Leenane (30 minutes) and from Leenane to Maam Cross will be organised and is included in your tour price (as long as you confirm to us your arrival time to Maam Cross one month prior to arrival).

Please note that the last Citylink bus leaving Galway to Clifden is at 5.30 pm.

Total journey time is approximately 5 hours.

Reviews

Marian

01 Aug 2018

5/5

You are so flexible on the bike. You are free to stop everywhere you want to take pictures, have lunch on a bench close to a loch and if it starts raining you have the opportunity to stop in cute and cosy coffee places for tea and scones until the rain stops. Ireland is a wonderful destination and Connemara adventure tours the best way to explore this beautiful country! The staff is very friendly, helpful and supportive. Thank you for making this journey unforgettable!

James

13 Jun 2018

5/5

You have a great team there. From the booking, bike, B&B's and well laid tour & mapping I cannot think of a better way to see Ireland (in low gear)."

Francis

21 Sep 2017

5/5

We had such a memorable holiday, please pass on our thanks to Geraldine and Mary in Cong who were both fantastic to us. They did a load of washing for us when we arrived wet and muddy and also drove us into town. Such welcoming and helpful ‘hostesses’ made our stay all the more enjoyable. It’s a pity we didn’t have more time.

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 plenty of useful information on our Getting to Ireland page.