The second largest of the British Isles, and third-largest island in Europe, Ireland is separated from Great Britain by a narrow stretch of channels and straights. The landscape of Ireland is dramatic and green. It is home to castles, cliffs, low-lying mountains, rolling plains, and wondrous culture.

Being an Island, and without major impairing geographical features, a road trip around the island can be done with relative ease. Acquire an international diverse license and pack your bags. This is a 2-week journey around Ireland that you need to check off your bucket list!


Day 1: Start in Dublin

Pick up your rental at the airport and it’s time to get started. You will only have one night here, so try to pick your destinations wisely. A couple of good choices for during the day would be Dublin Castle or Saint. Stephens Green. As sunsets on your first day in Ireland, go ahead and be a tourist and grab yourself a Guinness. The Temple Bar area is a great destination.

  • Cost of Car Rental - $24-$100 USD per day

Day 2: Stop 2: Visit the Rock Of Cashel And Hore Abbey

The Rock of Cashel is a collection of medieval structures of Gothic design. They are a round tower, a high cross, a Romanesque chapel, a Gothic cathedral, an abbey, the Hall of the Vicars Choral, and a fifteenth-century Tower House.

The last medieval Cistercian monastery in Ireland, Hore Abbey was founded in 1272 by monks from Mellifont Abbey. It still retains its stunning archways and sits on a hill overlooking green fields.

  • Driving Distance - 167 km from the center of Dublin.

Day 3: Cork, Cobh, And Blarney Estate

The main attraction here is Blarney Estate and its gardens. One of the more iconic parts of the estate is the Blarney stone which is said to gift eloquence to any who kiss it. The estate itself is stunning with its well-maintained castle, walls, and gardens. Other attractions in this country are its scenic coast, markets, and even whale watching.

  • Driving Distance - Less than 100km from the Rock of Cashel and Hore Abbey.

Day 4: The Ring Of Kerry

This day will be a road trip in itself as the Ring of Kerry is a scenic drive along the verdant southwestern coast. Skellig Michael, a rocky island with an abandoned 7th-century Christian monastery, along with the many coastal villages here will be the main stopping points and attractions. The circular loop itself is 179km, so with a few stops, this will take up the better part of your day.

  • Driving Distance - 120km from Cork

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Day 5: Valentia Island

Just off the route from did the day before, Valentia Island is deserving of a day itself. Depending on the weather, you may want to consider giving the car a rest and renting a bicycle. Several stops on this island are the slate quarry. the Lighthouse at the Cromwell fort, Knightstown, and Geokaun Mountain, which has an impressive view of the surrounding areas. It should be quick to get here from wherever you spent the night before, so you should have plenty of time to take in what this island has to offer.

  • Driving Distance - 59kn from the general starting area for the Ring of Kerry.

Day 6: Explore Killarney

Also just off the route for the Ring of Kerry, this is a good spot to yet again escape the car and venture into Killarney National Park to enjoy a bit of nature, or take some photos at St. Mary’s Cathedral. You should be able to do both without much issue.

  • Driving Distance - 82km from Valentia Island.

Day 7: Dingle Peninsula

It's finally time to escape the Ring of Kerry. A short drive northwest will take you to Dingle Peninsula. This peninsula is home to rolling hills and stark cliffs ending in the Atlantic. Mount Brandon, just 952 meters high, offers a stunning view of the surrounding area. This is a great location to take in Ireland's beauty.

  • Driving Distance - 65km from Killarney

Day 8: The Cliffs Of Moher

A bit further of a drive than other days, but scenic in its own right. This is a location most travelers are aware of, even if they know very little about Ireland. Images of this sharp and long cliff line and the waves breaking against them is an iconic image from Ireland. Definitely enjoy your time exploring this region.

  • Driving Distance - 210km from Dingle Peninsula (fast route) / 140km (Scenic route)

Day 9: Doolin

Not far to the north of the Cliffs of Moher, Doolin is a charming village with colorful houses and much to spend your day exploring. Doolin isn’t just the gateway to the Aran Islands. It is the home to the Doolin Caves, Doolin point, and the Burren which is home to unique orchids.

  • Driving Distance - 8km from the Cliffs of Moher

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Day 10: Westport

Westport is the home of Rockfleet Castle and Burrishole Abbey. Here stone bridges link the tree-lined promenade on the banks of the Carrowbeg River. The stunning sights also link to this town’s history and interesting connection to the pirate queen Grace O’ Malley.

  • Driving Distance - 162km from Doolin

Day 11: Achill Island

It’s time to make a trip back to nature with a brief drive northwest to Achill Island. The home of peat bogs, rugged mountains, eye-catching ocean views, and sandy beaches, Achill Island is popular for watersports. The strand at Kreem Bay is a popular location for spending some time.

  • Driving Distance - 52km from Westport

Day 12: the Slieve League Cliffs

A bit of a drive, so make sure to give yourself enough time to fully enjoy it. The Slieve League Cliffs are another set of ocean cliffs in Ireland. They aren’t as dramatically sharp as the Cliffs of Moher, but the way they wind, with small inlets, makes them stunning in their own right.

  • Driving Distance - 255km from Achill Island

Day 13: Belfast

Now it's time to get back into the city. This is the first and only time you will cross the border into Northern Ireland. Titanic Belfast, Belfast City Hall, and the Dome of Victoria Square are sites worth making time to visit. You will also find no shortage of locations to grab some food or a bit to drink.

  • Driving Distance - 226km from the Slieve League Cliffs

Day 14: Return to Dublin

Returning to Dublin, it is your chance to visit any locations you didn’t have time for during your first visit. Make sure to not miss your flight!

  • Driving Distance - 105km from Belfast

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