CycleWest Ireland - vacations and travel

West Coast Adventure

“‘This was one of the best vacations of our lives - without all of your timely and thorough assistance, there… ”
Ireland, Europe

from €795* per person 6 Days March-September
Boutique accommodations Exertion level: 3
Operator: CycleWest Ireland 12 people max
  • Dublin airport, dublin, ireland
  • Active & Adventure trips
Highlights of this Self Led Cycling Holiday in Ireland include the Cliffs of Moher, the Aran Islands, Connemara National Park, Kylemore Abbey and Killary Fjord

In the Burren, you will enjoy the stone forts, monuments, alpine and arctic flowers and plants that grow side by side, the seeds having been deposited by glacier millions of years ago. This is the mystical land of disappearing rivers and lakes, closed valleys, caves and limestone pavements. You may even find a real fairy fort!

The Aran Islands, three timeless islands in an endless sea showcase weathered monuments on awesome cliffs, great labyrinths of limestone, meandering walls, patchwork fields, quiet beaches and a welcoming island people.

Crossing by ferry from the Aran Islands, you will know immediately that you have arrived in Connemara by the light that constantly changes the mood and tone of the landscape!

For this rewarding bike trip, we have chosen a wonderful variety of quality, select accommodations that offer a blend of luxury, location and personal hospitality.  You will enjoy the delights of stunning settings and vibrant culture.

Locations visited/nearby

Ireland, Europe

3 testimonials about this trip

  1. Reviewer: located in Boston, USA
    ‘This was one of the best vacations of our lives - without all of your timely and thorough assistance, there is no way we would have been able to pull off this trip! We will definitely be taking more vacations with you…’

    5
  2. Reviewer: located in Toronto, Canada
    ‘We loved our trip and consider it one of our favourite vacations!  We loved discovering the Connemara region of Ireland…the people and the landscape were wonderful!  Thank you for taking such great care of us too. Thank you Aoife and John for working so hard to give us a fantastic trip. We are still humming our favourite Irish ballads.

    5
  3. Reviewer: located in Ohio
     

    "My favourite day was the cycle from Leenane to Westport, seeing the mountains and fresh water lakes, plus the traffic was very low...."

     

    5

3 testimonials about the provider, CycleWest Ireland:

  • Reviewer: located in Raleigh, North Carolina USA
    "I have been telling everyone who will listen to me just how wonderful an experience my Ireland trip was. My pictures are developed and I carry them with me all the time. I can honestly say it was the best vacation I have ever had. The sights, the people, the accommodations and even the challenge made for a very fulfilling experience. You have really done an excellent job in developing this program. I would do it again in a heartbeat"
    5
  • Reviewer: located in Brevard, North Carolina USA
    "10 out of 10"
    5
  • Reviewer: located in Madison, Connecticut USA
    "My father and I had a wonderful time. The cycling was adventurous. I particularly enjoyed cycling on the tiny roads of Connemara---where sheep seem to be the only road traffic in many places. Your knowledge of the region combined with your dedication to all the details of our trip enabled me to learn about the region, enjoy its beauty and cycle without a worry"
    5

Comments from Facebook

Special information

  • This is a custom departure, meaning this trip is offered on dates that you arrange privately with the provider. Additionally, you need to form your own private group for this trip. The itinerary and price here is just a sample. Contact the provider for detailed pricing, minimum group size, and scheduling information. For most providers, the larger the group you are traveling with, the lower the per-person cost will be.
  • Family oriented trip.
  • Self-guided (includes hotels, maps, luggage transfer, etc but no guide).

Itinerary

Day 1: Welcome to the Emerald Isle!
Here you begin our celebrated tour of the West Coast of Ireland: the Burren region, the Aran Islands and Connemara. We meet in the
village of Ballyvaughan at you first overnight tour accommodation. Further details and transfer options will be sent to you upon
booking your tour. Welcome meeting and bike fit out with briefing in the late afternoon. You will spend the next two nights here in
Ballyvaughan.

DAY 2: Castles and Caves
Today you explore medieval Newtown Castle before setting off on your day’s adventure. This day is designed a leisurely day to bring
you into the heart of the Burren, explore Ailwee Caves and the Wild Bird sanctuary where you can watch the falcons fly. A day of
history and scenery, of ancient ring forts and dolmans. Onward to the environmental initiative of The Burren - the Burren
Interpretative Centre in Kilfenora. Discover a world of wildlife, folklore, ancient archaeology and wonderful plant life. Explore Kilfenora
Cathedral and Celtic High Crosses. Overnight in Ballyvaughan.
Daily Miles: Minimum mileage of 15 miles with extensions. Total possible miles: 42.

DAY 3: Moonscapes and Music
Having viewed Newtown Castle, a 12th Century tower house, you continue with today's biking. A leisurely ride along one of the most
scenic coastal routes. The flaggy shoreline, Fanore Beach and Blackhead Lighthouse are amongst just some of the points of interest
you view along the route this morning. An afternoon ferry ride from the village of Doolin will take you to the historical Aran Islands,
where Gaelic is the spoken language. Visit the historical Dun Aengus Hill top fort towering 700 ft above the ocean. Enjoy the vistas of
white washed cottages and the intricate network of stone walls. This is a visit you will treasure long after your visit to Ireland.
Transfer by ferry and overnight on the Aran Islands.
Daily Miles: Minimum mileage of 19 miles with extensions. Total possible miles: 30.

DAY 4: Ferries and Foxes
Mid Day departure from the Aran Islands to the Rosaveal ferry port. You traverse a route bordered by heather and bracken, through
scenery that is wild and barren. Picnic lunch en route followed by a bike ride through the rugged Twelve Bens mountains towards the
rugged coastline. Recommended evening cocktails and dinner at a local restaurant, where the food and produce are all sourced in the
West of Ireland. Overnight in Clifden.
Daily miles: Minimum mileage of 25 miles with extensions. Total possible miles: 45

DAY 5: Seascapes and Sandcastles
Early morning start to Roundstone village, the most picturesque fishing harbour in Connemara where traditional Galway Hooker,
lovingly cared for over the years, can be seen on Bertraghboy Bay. You visit Malachy Kearns Musical Instrument workshop, the home
of the traditional Bodhran. Departing Roundstone to Ballyconneely village via stunning beaches at Dog’s Bay and Gurteen Bay, you
follow the rugged coastline to Ballyconneely, taking time to visit the Connemara Smokehouse, perched on the water's edge. Here the
Roberts’ family run Connemara's longest established smokehouse and are one of the few specialists in wild smoked salmon. You bike
to the Alcock and Brown monument, dedicated to the first transatlantic flight in 1919 from New Foundland. Returning to Clifden via
Ballynahinch Castle hotel by way of the scenic bog road where sheep are your only distraction. Tonight you may dine at a nearby
award winning, family run restaurant where the seafood is truly the 'catch of the day'. Overnight in Clifden.
Daily Miles: Minimum of a 19 loop, with longer routes from 22 - 45 miles.

DAY 6: DAY 9: Castle Extension or Departure
Today, sadly, today we bid you farewell. This morning you depart from Westport to your next point. We can assist you with any
planning, be it rail, flight or car hire. Please also see our 'trip arrival and departure' instructions' for transport options.
You also have the option of extending your bike trip by one further day. Transfer or bike from Westport to Cong, and stay overnight at
the historical, five stars, Ashford Castle Hotel. This is a magnificent opportunity to visit the historic village of Cong, most famed as the
setting for the John Forde movie 'The Quiet Man' starring John Wayne and Irelands' famed Maureen O'Hara. Ashford Castle, perched
on the edge of Lough Corrib, was built in 1228 and in later year’s home to Sir Benjamin lee Guinness, of the famed Guinness family.
Avid gardeners, Sir Guinness and his son, Lord Ardilaun created the beautiful gardens and surrounding acreage of woodlands. Nearby,
the 12th century ruins of the Augustinian Abbey stand as a legacy to this fine castle.
Activity options include: horseback riding, falconry, fishing, golf in lieu of biking. These activities as options are costed as extras to
your trip but can be booked on your behalf on advance. You may also elect to take a leisurely cruise on Lough Corrib from Ashford
Castle. This option includes a visit to historical Inchgoill Island, where the remains of 5th Century St. Patrick's church lies nestled in
the woods. Outside is a memorial stone with the inscription ' Lie Luguaedon macci Menueh' (the stone of Luguaedon, son of Menueh),
one of the oldest inscribed stones in Ireland dated to 500 A.D.
Enjoy an evening dinner overlooking the castle grounds, often accompanied by music from the Drawing Room's grand piano.
Transfer next day to Galway Airport or Rail Station for departure to your next point.
Overnight at Ashford Castle Hotel
Daily miles: chose between a private castle transfer or bike ride. Minimum miles: 22 miles. Extension through Tourmakeady and
Clonbur: 42 miles.

More information from CycleWest Ireland: