Touring in Ireland

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
wheel71
Posts: 77
Joined: 4 Nov 2015, 12:25pm
Location: SW Ireland

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby wheel71 » 4 Nov 2015, 12:47pm

Hi, My first post on here although I have used the site for reference many times. We moved to Ireland last year and live on the Mizen peninsula. I've only done day rides since being here but am planning a little 5 day tour up to and around Kerry next year (gap of dunloe ect, can't wait). Everywhere around here just seems so nice, with lots of quiet roads and mountains. Mizen, Sheeps head and Beara peninsulas are all very good cycling and I'd recomend them to anyone. Also some daunting hills if you like that sort of thing (priests leap, evil).
My other reason for posting is that we could probably look after a car here for a few days (for free obviously). We also rent the house next door out so if it's free at the time may also be able to provide a nights accommodation if needed. Send me a PM if this may help you out. But bear in mind we only have room for 1 vehicle.

robing
Posts: 977
Joined: 7 Sep 2014, 9:11am

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby robing » 5 Nov 2015, 9:14am

youngordon wrote:Hi - I live just outside of Limerick and I am a keen cycle tourist. The whole of the south coast from Rosslare across through Waterford, Cork and then down to Mizen is great. Then up via the fingers that stick out into the Atlantic (especially the Beara and Sheep's Head) and across the Shannon on the ferry to Clare (watching the Dolphins on the way) and then through the magnificent Burren. There are plenty of small roads in Ireland that will allow you to cycle away from traffic. Living in the Limerick the route road Lough Derg is very pretty and traffic light. If you want to take the train with your bike Irish Rail have just announced that they no longer will carry bikes at peak times. There is a new long distance bike route being constructed from Dublin to Galway but only some of it has been constructed (parts from Dublin to Athlone). If you do go round Cork and Kerry and want to use the ferry to Clare the Great Southern trail offers about 50k of car free riding.


I had a thoroughly enjoyable cycle tour of Ireland last year. I got the ferry from Fishguard to Rosslare, cycled the 'long way round' the coast to Belfast and got the ferry to Birkenhead. Went via Waterford, Cork, then Mizen Head to Malin Head taking in the wonderful west coast. The Burren was amazing and in particular finding the Father Ted house in deepest co Clare. Then up to Galway, Sligo, Donegal and Malin Head. From there I hopped on the short ferry to N Ireland (bypassing the longer land route via Londonderry) and then did the Antrim coast which was spectacular. Campsites were good but not as plentiful as in the UK, but there are BnBs everywhere and most were extremely nice and welcoming. Ireland is such a nice place to visit, even if the weather isn't great!

jags
Posts: 575
Joined: 3 Oct 2007, 3:11pm

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby jags » 5 Nov 2015, 4:57pm

hasen't stop raining here all feckin day more tomorrow and saturday :( :( :(

get here in may usually good weather and everyone is in good form well almost everyone.

pwa
Posts: 9409
Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby pwa » 6 Nov 2015, 7:19am

Having cycled and driven in Ireland I would try to avoid the narrowish roads that are likely to be used by Saga coaches. The Ring of Kerry road is a prime example, and the road down the southern side of the Dingle peninsula. If you do need to use a road like that, try to get there at 8 or 9 in the morning, whilst most tourists are still putting marmalade on their toasts. I remember enjoying riding up the Moll's Gap road from Kenmare at about 9 and finding the road fairly quiet and pleasant.

bikergirl
Posts: 16
Joined: 2 Nov 2015, 3:03pm

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby bikergirl » 6 Nov 2015, 1:52pm

I think we are going to have to have several tours in Ireland to get to all the places you good folks have told me about. Loads of super info, thank you to all. I love the bit about the train plus ferry being cheaper than just the train - how daft is that. Thanks for the accommodation note "wheel71" - duly noted. It looks as tho we are going to head south for our first trip and see how far we get just pootling along in 2 weeks. We were planning on camping, which is what we usually do when touring, but I note some of you say there are not that many campsites. so I guess we'll just have to play it by ear and use BnB if we have to. Probably going to go to Dun Laoghaire (thanks iviehoff) if it gets us on the right side of town to set off.
It's all very exciting - something to look forward to through the long winter months.

eileithyia
Posts: 7731
Joined: 31 Jan 2007, 6:46pm
Location: Horwich Which is Lancs :-)

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby eileithyia » 6 Nov 2015, 2:12pm

http://hostels-ireland.com/

Check these out.... a lot of hostels offer camping at the hostel, with use of indoor facilities.... invaluable at times when we were travelling with a child.

I went over Gap of Dunloe from south side and before the tourists from the north side had arrived, one advantage of staying at Black Valley YH. You can also camp at some of the An Oige hostels.
Someone used to produce a booklet of all the Irish hostels, as there was more than one Independant network along with Northern Ireland and An Oige... it was certainly useful when travelling and pre-internet days to have all the hostels in one reference guide you could carry with you.
I stand and rejoice everytime I see a woman ride by on a wheel the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood. HG Wells

robing
Posts: 977
Joined: 7 Sep 2014, 9:11am

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby robing » 6 Nov 2015, 2:23pm

There are certainly fewer campsites in Ireland, but the ones I stayed at were all very good. In particular the ones at Skiberreen, Carhisveen and Blarney. I didn't know about the camping at hostels, that's useful information.

bikergirl
Posts: 16
Joined: 2 Nov 2015, 3:03pm

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby bikergirl » 6 Nov 2015, 6:12pm

Thanks, I'll certainly look into the hostels and have noted the good campsites.

gordonyoung
Posts: 16
Joined: 16 Sep 2009, 10:44pm

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby gordonyoung » 6 Nov 2015, 8:55pm

if you need any further information contact me or if passing through Limerick let me know. We could put you up OK.

vjosullivan
Posts: 417
Joined: 31 Oct 2010, 12:06am

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby vjosullivan » 7 Nov 2015, 9:56am

The Ring of Beara is undoubtably one of the nicest cycling routes you'll find anywhere. When it's not raining that is. Ireland is, unfortunately, at the plug-hole end of the Gulf Stream.

http://www.bearatourism.com/cycling.html

In addition, I'd definitely recommend crossing the Healy Pass between Adrigole and Lauragh or at least going from Adrigole to the top and back again.
E25

jags
Posts: 575
Joined: 3 Oct 2007, 3:11pm

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby jags » 7 Nov 2015, 12:14pm

i agree the healy pass is a must do but it's a tough gig but if it's good weather certainly worth the efford.
pity me and bikepacker didn't turn left at the top. :lol: :lol: we were having some craic until we reached kenmare .
jazus i never knew bike touring could be so dramatic :wink:
anyway OP as i said get good weather and there no where better to ride a bike ,
pubs are great for food and music ,scenery is stunning on the west coast doolin has a great hostal also campsite .
the ride to molls gap is lovely i didn't find it hard to be honest but the ride to the cliffs of moher is long and hard but again worth the efford...
anyway have fun be sure your bike is in top class condition bike shops charge an arm and a leg bring wet gear to be sure to be sure :wink:

bikepacker
Posts: 1961
Joined: 5 Jan 2007, 7:08pm
Location: Worcestershire
Contact:

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby bikepacker » 7 Nov 2015, 1:42pm

jags looking cool and casual after his climb up the Healy Pass. Image
There is your way. There is my way. But there is no "the way".

jags
Posts: 575
Joined: 3 Oct 2007, 3:11pm

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby jags » 7 Nov 2015, 2:47pm

you nearly killed me on that climb lol. still we had a laugh while it lasted. :lol:

eileithyia
Posts: 7731
Joined: 31 Jan 2007, 6:46pm
Location: Horwich Which is Lancs :-)

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby eileithyia » 7 Nov 2015, 5:37pm

Ah remember that view well, but don't remember it being that hard a climb....
I stand and rejoice everytime I see a woman ride by on a wheel the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood. HG Wells

LollyKat
Posts: 2795
Joined: 28 May 2011, 11:25pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Touring in Ireland

Postby LollyKat » 7 Nov 2015, 6:22pm

Swank!! :lol: