If you’re looking for a escape with a difference, then why not hop aboard a ferry, ready for an Irish adventure? With fairytale castles and fun adventures, as well as big cities and country retreats, Ireland is the perfect place to take a spin in the car for a road trip. Here are some top ideas for self-drive journeys:
1) Donegal to Cork
As the world’s longest touring route, this is Ireland’s answer to California’s Pacific Highway. It makes for a spectacular drive and takes in dramatic coastline, stunning scenery and more than 150 landmarks. Try stopping off at Hell’s Hole, a steep rocky crevice in Malin Head, Donegal, or admire the ocean views from Loop Head Lighthouse.
2) Dublin to Galway
Fly to your Dublin timeshare then hire a car for this magical tour, which takes in romantic castles and the impressive Martello Tower in Dublin, the former home of novelist James Joyce. Just be sure to make a pit-stop at the charming walled medieval town of Athenry Castle.
3) Kerry to Cork
Drive alongside spectacular mountainside and rugged coastline until you reach Blarney Castle, the ancestral home of the McCarthy clan and home the legendary Blarney Stone. When you finally arrive in Cork, reward yourself with a pint of Red Rebel ale from the local brewery.
4) Belfast to Londonderry
Enjoy Northern Ireland’s bustling capital, before heading out on the Causeway Coastal Route. See the world famous Giant’s Causeway – 40,000 other-wordly hexagonal basalt columns that were by cooling lava more than 60 million years ago – before taking in the rope bridge to Carrick Island, which has medieval ruins, gushing waterfalls in Glenariff Forest Park, and dazzling limestone cliffs.
5) Dublin to Portlaoise
After partying in Temple Bar, get some downtime in the wilderness of the stunning, wild Wicklow Mountains. Enjoy a lazy lunch at the foot of Powerscourt Waterfall, before cruising through the Wicklow Mountains National Park. As you take in the beautiful scenery, you’ll feel a million miles away from the chaos of modern life.