Authentic Ireland – 11 Day Self Drive Tour

Self-Drive Tour
From€1,299
Self-Drive Tour
From€1,299
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  • 11 daysDuration
  • IrelandDublin
  • AISDTTour Code
  • Mar-OctDates
  • 2/5Physicality
  • N/AGroup Size

A truly unforgettable Ireland Tour

Discover Ireland’s authentic side with a spectacular 11-day self drive journey through the most spectacular landscapes of Ireland’s wild Atlantic coastline and the Boyne Valley. This tour of Ireland starts from Dublin and takes you through most of the most important places in the South of Ireland, including, the Rock of Cashel, Cork, Killarney National Park, Dingle, the Cliffs of Moher, and more. This is so much more than your average Ireland bus tour from Dublin and we can’t wait to show you! If you’d like to shop around a little and compare itineraries, make sure you take a look at our range of Ireland tour packages. If you want the trip to meet your every need, then check out our private guided tours of Ireland.

Journey off the beaten track in Ireland. Experience the ‘real’ Ireland with Wild N Happy. There is so much passion and planning from the Wild N Happy HQ to ensure that this self drive tour (and all our tours, for that matter) are filled with magical landscapes, spectacular adventure (kayaking, hiking, cycling, you name it), and vibrant people. Your journey begins in Dublin, and from there it bring you on a round trip of southern Ireland’s most important towns, landmarks, and wild areas. This self drive experience ends at the magnificent Stone Age (Neolithic) monument of Newgrange in Ireland’s Ancient East. You’ve never been on a vacation quite like this! 

Experience Southern Ireland’s wild coastline and its pristine islands, spectacular peninsulas, colourful fishing villages and vibrant towns. Go kayaking on the lakes of Killarney, hike on the Ring of Kerry or explore the magnificent Cliffs of Moher. We’ve done everything we can to ensure this self drive tour of Ireland has the perfect balance ingredients to create an authentic, completely unforgettable experience. There’s plenty more information below and on the other tabs, but if you have any more questions for us, please don’t hesitate to contact us.  

Why You Will Love This Tour

  • Discover vibrant towns and cities of Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Coastline
  • Explore the spectacular Mizen Head peninsula
  • Visit Killarney National Parks and its precious lakes
  • Experience the majestic Ring of Kerry and Dingle
  • Feast your eyes on the spectacular Cliffs of Moher
  • Experience great food and fun traditional music nights

Start and Finish Location

This is a self-drive tour, so you can start and finish from wherever makes sense for you.

Departure Day(s)

Daily

Departure Time(s)

09:00 AM – Recommended departure time. Setting off early is always recommended, but this is a self-drive tour, so you can leave when it suits you.

Included

  • Professionally designed and easy to follow daily itineraries
  • 10 nights accommodation
  • Breakfast each day
  • Daily recommendations for food, entertainment and additional activity experiences
  • 24/7 support service so no matter where you are or what time of the day it is we are just a call away to help you.
  • All entrance fees to national parks outlined in your itinerary
  • Rock of Cashel
  • Mizen Head Signal Station
  • Skellig Experience Visitor Centre
  • Cliffs of Moher Visitor Centre
  • Aran Island Ferry - to and from Inis Mor Island
  • Kylemore Abbey & Gardens
  • Newgrange

Not Included

Tour Highlights
Itinerary

Day 1:The Rock of Cashel and Cork City

Departing from The Ashling Hotel, Parkgate Street, Arran Quay, Dublin 8 at 9am.

Your adventure starts off in Dublin, Ireland’s capital, also known as the Fair City. Your direction is south to the rebel county of Ireland, Cork, and its wild Atlantic coastline.

Along the way, take a stop off at the Rock of Cashel, a spectacular group of medieval buildings set on an outcrop of limestone and home of the High Kings of Ireland. After lunch, continue your journey towards Cork, which is the starting point of Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way and where that evening you can relax and savour its picturesque setting and friendly atmosphere.

Day 2:Mizen Head and West Cork

Rise and shine for an adventure along the wild and spectacular coastline of Cork and climb over mountain passes to reach the majestic setting of Killarney.

Along the way, stop off at a Stone Age tomb called the Altar Wedge Tomb, which sits dramatically on the waterfront overlooking Toormore Bay. Continue your journey towards one of Ireland’s most southerly point, Mizen Head. You have the option of visiting the Mizen Head Signal Station* or take a stroll along the golden strand of Barleycove beach.

After a bite to eat, make your way over the mountainous terrain that separates Cork and Kerry before arriving in the picturesque town of Killarney. It is home to Ireland’s first national park with spectacular glistening lakes, beautiful nature, great food, and a vibrant cultural atmosphere.

*Mizen Head Signal Station only available from Mid-March to October.

Day 3:The Ring of Kerry and Valentia Island

Today’s adventure takes you off the beaten track to unlock the real beauty of the world famous Ring of Kerry. Considered one of the most beautiful destinations to explore in Ireland, the Ring of Kerry offers dramatic landscapes of wild rugged coastline, golden beaches, glistening lakes, picturesque villages and spectacular mountain ranges.

Even better, take an incredible tour of the spectacular Valentia Island where you can delve into its incredible history and heritage, explore its magical setting on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean and if you are lucky get a glimpse (weather permitting) of the dramatic Skellig Islands (Star Wars famed).

After a well-earned bite to eat, slowly make your way back to Killarney stopping off at many spectacular viewing points to learn of their historical importance and the opportunity to take that picture that will ensure an everlasting memory of paradise.

Day 4:Discover Killarney

Today is your chance to discover the majestic setting of Killarney and Ireland’s first National Park. You can choose to relax and unwind, explore its national park and vibrant town or take one of many adventure experiences to truly discover Killarney.

In terms of adventure, you have the opportunity to take a gentle guided hike of Torc Mountain with magical view of the Lakes of Killarney from its summit, explore Muckross Estate by bicycle or walking which is home to a spectacular 15th Century Franciscan Friary, Torc Waterfall and the majestic setting of Muckross House & Gardens. or finally combine one of those experiences with a mesmerizing kayak tour on the Lakes of Killarney in either the morning or afternoon.

That evening, you can experience Killarney’s great food offerings, vibrant musical nightlife or take a stroll through its majestic national park.

Day 5:Dingle and Lahinch

Dingle and Lahinch are your destinations today, as you explore these dramatic and beautiful areas of Ireland that are littered with archaeological and historical wonders. 

Your first stop off is at Inch beach, famous for being the place where an inch is actually three miles long and where we take a short stroll along its golden sands and watch long rolling waves that come crashing ashore. Then continue west to the edge of Europe, also known as Slea Head. Feast your eyes on breathtaking scenery of wild rugged coastline, golden beaches and the magnificent Blasket Islands. Journey around this rich and vibrant peninsula exploring its vast Gaelic culture and learning a cupla focal (some words) in Irish along the way. 

Then take in a visit and have lunch in the colourful and vibrant town of Dingle before making your way north along the edge of Europe to the spectacular setting of the Cliffs of Moher, where you will overnight in the beautiful coastal setting of Lahinch and a chance for you to experience great traditional music sessions, fantastic food and of course meet the locals.  

Day 6:The Cliffs of Moher and The Wild Burren

This morning make our way to the spectacular Cliffs of Moher in County Clare. This ‘must see’ wonder of Ireland, the Cliffs of Moher, stretches for almost 10 KM and will capture your eyes and imagination as you gaze out in awe of its impressive setting. 

Take the opportunity to explore the fantastic interpretation centre that will show you how this marvelous creation was shaped by nature’s hand and learn about its unique geological makeup.

After a bite to eat, continue north through the remarkable moon-like terrain of the wild Burren on route to the bohemian capital of Ireland, Galway. That afternoon, take the opportunity to soak in it’s vibrant streets, sample its wide variety of food offerings or take a tour exploring its unique historical places of interest.

Day 7:Discover Galway City

Today is your opportunity to soak in Galway’s vibrant bustling streets and quaint cafes offer you a relaxing atmosphere to rejuvenate your batteries before we commence our spectacular northern section of the dramatic Wild Atlantic Way.  

Day 8:Inis Mor Island (Aran Islands)

Jump from mainland Ireland to one of its most renowned island, Inis Mór, meaning big island. It is the largest of three islands that make up the Aran Islands.

Once you arrive on its limestone shores, you can either explore the island by foot, bicycle or jaunting cart, in which you can experience the island’s magnificent landscape of rocky fields, wild Ocean views and incredible monuments of Christian, pre-Christian and Celtic mythological heritage. Take in a visit to one of the most famous of them, Dún Aonghasa, which is a breath-taking fort that was built on a high cliff some 100 metres above sea level.

That afternoon, make your way back to mainland Ireland before heading due west to the colourful coastal town of Clifden, where you can sample its famous culinary delights and traditional music nights.

Day 9:Connemara National Park and Kylemore Abbey

Today’s adventure brings you to Connemara National Park and Kylemore Abbey. Explore these majestic destinations, full of colourful scenery and wonderful history.

In Connemara National Park, take the opportunity to hike to the top Diamond Hill before heading to Kylemore Abbey for a bite to eat and time to explore its incredible history and unique gardens.

Later that afternoon, commence your journey northwards passing Killary harbour and secluded picturesque lakes that line your path to the colourful town of Westport. That evening, experience this vibrant towns legendary musical talent and culinary exploits.

Day 10:Discover Westport

You have the day to either relax, explore or take an adventure in picturesque Westport. It is famous for Croagh Patrick, Ireland’s holiest mountain and Clew Bay, which has an island for everyday of the year.

Westport is rich in historical areas of interest and a great traditional music scene. Be sure to experience it!!

Day 11:Westport to Dublin via Newgrange

In the morning, we depart the beautiful coastal setting of Westport and head east through the heartlands of Ireland towards Dublin’s fair city.
 
As we meander through Ireland’s midlands, we will pass through quaint villages and lush green fields that dot this picturesque landscape before arriving at one of Ireland’s most unique and special locations, Newgrange.
 
This magnificent Stone Age (Neolithic) monument is the jewel in the crown of Ireland’s Ancient East and was constructed about 5,200 years ago (3,200 B.C.) which makes it older than Stonehenge and the Great Pyramids of Giza. Take the opportunity to explore this unique monument before we head south to Dublin and our journey’s end, where we bid a fond farewell with happy memories that will last forever. Remember, Ireland is now your second home away from home!

Returning to The Ashling Hotel, Parkgate Street, Arran Quay, Dublin 8 at 6pm.
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