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The High Life 8-Day Self-Drive Road Trip Through Ireland

Self-Drive
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Book with Confidence

  • Guaranteed Departures
  • 5 Star Rated on TripAdvisor
  • Small Groups
  • Can be booked as a private tour
  • Local Irish Guides

Self Drive Tours

  • Expertly Designed Itineraries
  • Support Concierge Service
  • Overland Ireland Virtual Tour Guide
  • Fully Comprehensive Insurance

  • Self-Drive
  • 8 Days
  • 1-4 people (Get in touch for groups of 5+)

Treat yourself to a luxury 8 day tour of Ireland

From castle stays to romantic cliff-top walks this self-drive 8-day Ireland tour has it all!

Let us provide you with the perfect itinerary for a luxury 8-day road trip through Ireland, showing you the best of our country has to offer. Begin exploring Ireland’s Ancient East at Glendalough and make your way to the legendary Wild Atlantic Way.

Discover the magical sites on the Ring of Kerry, take a jaunt through Killarney National Park and even steal a kiss from the Blarney Stone. This Ireland self-drive tour has the perfect balance of heritage, culture, and famed Irish “Craic” (fun), all packed into 8 days without ever feeling rushed!

This trip will take you to the famous Cliffs of Moher, through the Bohemian Capital of Culture Galway and finish with a night of opulence at Ashford Castle! If it is good enough for Prince Harry’s Honeymoon, then it is good enough for us!

Book your Ireland self-drive tour with confidence

  • Expertly Designed Itineraries
  • Support Concierge Service
  • Overland Ireland Virtual Tour Guide
  • Fully Comprehensive Insurance

Due to our tours’ remote, off-the-beaten-path locations, and the fact that we cannot guarantee that all accommodation partners have ramps and/or elevators, unfortunately, our tours are not wheelchair accessible.

Paddy - The Pocket Pilot

Paddy the Pocket Pilot App

Every Ireland Self-Drive Tour booked with us comes with a guided itinerary, exceptional service, and a host of extras, including Paddy the Pocket Pilot App, as standard. If you have an independent spirit and want to explore Ireland on an unforgettable road trip, you’re in good hands with us! Even though you hit the road solo, you still get all the benefits and insights of a guided tour as well as pre-booked “tried & loved” accommodation. Check out our tour group reviews to see how highly other travellers rate us!

What Is Included And Excluded In This 8-Day Ireland Road Trip?

At Overland Ireland, we are proud to be one of the only tour companies that tries to include as much as we can in your tour price. This means we minimise the chances of hidden surprises or unexpected charges while you’re here in Ireland.

We are always trying to find ways to keep experiences up and costs down! You can be sure that our team has worked tirelessly to find the best deals across the Emerald Isle.

Do you have special dietary requirements or food-based preferences? Please inform us as soon as possible so we can make the necessary adjustments. Overland Ireland can cater this tour to pescatarians, vegetarians, and vegans.

Included

  • Paddy the Pocket Pilot App
  • Top class accommodation in carefully chosen locally run guesthouses. We also have options of hotels and castle experiences
  • A hearty breakfast each morning to set you up for the day
  • Detailed and easy to follow daily itineraries
  • Simple maps and instructions on how to navigate your way around our beautiful country
  • All entrance fees to all national parks on your itinerary
  • Tour support throughout your journey. We are always available for a chat should you need us
  • Daily hidden gem locations revealed by our expert guides
  • Daily food and entertainment recommendations
  • Glendalough Tour
  • Blarney castle entrance
  • Bunratty Castle
  • Kylemore Abbey
  • Westport Bike Hire

Excluded

  • Parking and motorway toll fees
  • Fuel - for you car and of course your body! Petrol, lunch and dinner are on your own!
  • Rock of Cashel
  • Glendalough Monastery
  • Jaunting (horse and cart)
  • Shannon ferry
  • Clonmacnoise
  • Killarney bike hire
  • A driver guide (check out our fully-guided tours)
  • The self-control to leave stunning locations and be brave enough to discover all the other wonderful places on your itinerary
  • Some suggested activities and experiencesWe can arrange these for you, but you may be making payment directly to the activity/experience provider i.e. horse-riding, jaunting (horse drawn carriage)
  • Airfare to Ireland
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Private room upgrade for solo travellersMandatory

Are there 5 or more people in your group?

Get in touch to enquire about booking a larger vehicle

Reviews

Map

The High Life 8-Day Tour of Ireland

Your Self-Drive 8-Day Trip To Ireland Itinerary

The-Ultimate-Tour-of-Ireland-Unique-Experiences-Off-the-Beaten-Path

Day 1:Glendalough – Cork

Total driving distance & time: 330 km – 4 hours 10 minutes, excluding stops

Turn on your Paddy the Pocket Pilot App and hit the road! Glendalough in the Wicklow Mountains, perched centrally in Ireland’s Ancient East, is the first stop after leaving the hustle and bustle of Dublin behind.

You will take a guided tour of an important monastic site, learn about Ireland’s history and folklore, and take in the impressive St. Kevin’s Round Tower, built back in the 6th century.

After this introduction to Irish history, it’s time to travel south, where the Rock of Cashel awaits. Prepare to take plenty of jealousy-inducing photos at this famous medieval landmark.

In the afternoon and evening, you will make yourself at home in the luxurious Hayfield Manor in Cork City. You will have an endless choice of places to eat and be entertained this evening or simply relax and enjoy the lavish surroundings of the manor house.

Day 2:Blarney – Killarney

Total driving distance & time: 140 km – 2 hours 10 minutes, excluding stops

You simply cannot visit Ireland without a trip to Blarney Castle and Gardens. Kissing the Blarney Stone (and receiving the gift of the gab…hopefully!) is an absolute must. Take the time to roam and admire the beautiful gardens surrounding the castle.

Then it’s off to Kenmare, nestled between the Ring of Kerry and the Beara Peninsula, where you will enjoy lunch.

Killarney, the Capital of Kerry, is your next destination. Here, you will marvel at the spectacular views at Moll’s Gap, Ladies View, and Torc Waterfall before exploring the natural wonderland of Killarney National Park. In the afternoon you will enjoy a jaunt – riding in a horse-pulled carriage. And if you have the energy, you can cycle around this stunning 100km estate, taking in Muckross House, Ross Castle, and much more.

The evening is yours to spend wandering around Killarney’s wonderful shops, pubs, and eateries.

You will stay at the magnificent four-star Lake Hotel where you will receive a traditional Irish welcome with stunning surroundings. All of this has been prearranged for you by our expert team at Overland.

Day 3:The Ring of Kerry – Dingle

Total driving distance & time: 179 km – 4 hours, excluding stops

Rise and shine nice and early because it’s time to start the ultimate road trip on Ireland’s most famous driving route – The Ring of Kerry! Be sure to take your time and enjoy every part of this journey through 10,000 years of Irish history. This truly is a breathtaking drive. Our expert team will share tips on how to get off the beaten track, directing you to hidden gems along the way. You may even bump into our old friend selling Poitín (Irish Moonshine), but don’t tell anyone!

This evening you drive to the famous harbour town of Dingle, one of our most famous Irish legends!

The evening is yours to absorb Dingle’s famous atmosphere, from its quirky pubs to its fantastic restaurants. We recommend heading to Foxy John’s hardware store, ordering yourself a drink, and striking up a conversation with a friendly local!

Stay at the award-winning Heaton’s Guesthouse and get excited about their wonderful breakfast feast tomorrow morning.

Day 4:The Cliffs of Moher – Dromoland Castle

Total driving distance & time: 275 km – 4 hours, excluding stops

In the morning, you leave the South West behind and head northwards to the world-famous Cliffs of Moher. Here, you walk across the clifftop, exploring the stunning natural features with the powerful Atlantic Ocean waves crashing below. The Cliffs of Moher are an icon of Ireland for a good reason; we are sure they will astound you! We will also send you on a wonderful route off the beaten track.

After your invigorating cliffs experience, you deserve to unwind! Live like royalty in the celebrated, 5-star Dromoland Castle.

Day 5:Bunratty – Galway

Total driving distance & time: 72 km – 1 hour, excluding stops

This morning, you can either take your time to enjoy the activities and estate at Dromoland or make the short drive to Bunratty Castle where you can join a folk and heritage tour.

As you depart County Clare, your bustling, bohemian Galway adventure begins. Voted European Capital of Culture 2020, this city will not disappoint. Embrace the electric atmosphere, watch the entertaining street performers, and enjoy plenty of “craic” (fun). Our friends in Galway will then lead you on a gourmet historical city tour.

Your overnight accommodation is at the historical Hardiman Hotel on Eyre Square, a stone’s throw from the liveliest hotspots.

Day 6:Kylemore Abbey – Ballynahinch Castle

Total driving distance & time: 110 km – 1 hour 50 minutes, excluding stops

The next stop on your self-drive Ireland tour is Kylemore Abbey, set in the heart of Connemara. This incredible landscape is rugged, beautiful, and breathtaking in all conditions, be it hail, rain, or sunshine. While you’re here, enjoy some time roaming the abbey, in the Victorian walled garden, and near Kylemore Lake. Soak up the splendour of this 1000-acre estate overlooking the majestic Connemara National Park.

We recommend making the quick trip to Clifden for tea and cake, or even a delicious seafood lunch.
Ballynahinch Castle awaits you. Let them serve up a sumptuous afternoon tea in one of their luxurious rooms. Once you park up at this hidden gem, you will not want to leave.

Day 7:Westport – Ashford Castle

Total driving distance & time: 120 km – 2 hours, excluding stops

Ready for a challenge? Then spend your morning hiking up Ireland’s holiest mountain – Croagh Patrick – made famous by St. Patrick himself! Awe-inspiring panoramic views of Clew Bay await at the top. If this doesn’t sound like your thing, you can hop on a bike and cycle the Greenway route to Achill Island. There’s also the choice to have a relaxed walking tour of Westport.

This is the last night of your trip, so we have made sure you go out in style! The fabulous Ashford Castle Hotel has attracted presidents, sports heroes, and celebrities throughout history — and now it’s your turn! Infused with rich history and heritage, this really is one of the most luxurious places to stay in Ireland. What a way to finish your whirlwind tour of Ireland!

There are countless activities to enjoy on the estate, like archery, falconry, horse riding, and boat trips. Of course, you can also just head for their award-winning Spa!

Day 8:Clonmacnoise – Dublin

Total driving distance & time: 255 km – 3 hours, excluding stops

Sadly, every good thing must come to an end. Today, you head back to Dublin’s fair city at your leisure, stopping off at the 6th-century monastery Clonmacnoise.

If you have some time left in Dublin before your flight home, we can arm you with fantastic recommendations for things to see and do in our capital and the surrounding areas. Let Paddy the Pocket Pilot guide you back to Dublin and make some reservations for you.

Or…. Why not stay longer and link up with another one of our wonderful self-drive itineraries? The choices are endless with Overland Ireland.

Note: To confirm your Ireland self-drive tour booking, you have to pay a non-refundable deposit of €300 per person.

Due to our tours’ remote, off-the-beaten-path locations, and the fact that we cannot guarantee that all accommodation partners have ramps and/or elevators, unfortunately, our tours are not wheelchair accessible.

Download this itinerary as a PDF

    Note: This is our current itinerary for this year. If you’re booking for next year, the plan could change slightly. Feel free to get in touch if you have any questions about this or our other tours!