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The Northern Way 7-Day Self-Drive Tour of Ireland

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

Uncover Northern Ireland On This 7-Day Road Trip

Fall in love with Ireland on this 7-day self-drive tour of Northern Ireland. Roam the hills of Donegal and hug the Antrim Coastline on your way to discover the rich history, heritage, and culture of Northern Ireland. If you’d like even more travel inspiration beyond this tour, browse our extensive range of Self-Drive Tours of Ireland. And for a guided experience, check out our classic Small Group Tours of Ireland.

Get an adrenalin rush braving the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge and hike towards the Giant’s Causeway learning about Irish myths and legends!

Take jaw-dropping photos at Slieve League Cliffs and learn all about Ireland’s troubled past on a walking tour of Derry. Castles, stories, colorful locals and lots of “Craic” (fun) awaits on this unforgettable 7-day Ireland road trip.

Book with Confidence

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

Due to our tour’s 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 Self-Drive Tour booked with Overland Ireland comes with exceptional service, guided itinerary and extras, such as our Paddy the Pocket Pilot App, as standard. So, if you’re looking for an independent way to see Ireland with all the benefits and surprises of a guided tour with pre-booked “tried & loved” accommodation, you’re in good hands. But don’t take our word for it, check out our tour group reviews here.

Cartoon character named "Paddy the Pocket Pilot," with aviator glasses, a pilot hat, and specializing in Private Tours.

What is included and excluded in your Ireland 7-day self-drive tour?

We are one of the only tour companies to include as much as we can into your tour price. We aim to have no hidden surprises or unexpected charges on your tour.

Our quest is to keep costs down and experiences up! We have worked really hard to get you the best deals up and down the country for you.

Dietary requirements or preferences? Please let us know. We can cater this tour to vegans, vegetarians, and pescatarians.


  • 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
  • Newgrange or Hill of Tara
  • Titanic Experience
  • Crumlin Gaol
  • Giant's Causeway
  • Glenveagh National Park
  • Galway Walking Tour


  • Parking and motorway toll fees
  • Fuel - for you car and of course your body! Petrol, lunch and dinner are on your own!
  • Black Taxi Tour
  • Stormont Parliament
  • Dunluce Castle
  • Derry Walking Tour
  • Donegal Walking Tour
  • Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery
  • Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge
  • 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



The Northern Way 7-Day Tour of Ireland

Your 7-day Northern Ireland Road Trip

A stylized illustration of a blue minivan with "Overland Ireland: Small Group Tours" written on the side, featuring simple representations of passengers wearing sunglasses.

Day 1Newgrange – Titanic

Total driving distance & time: 180 km – 2 hours 10 minutes, excluding stops

Switch on your Paddy the Pocket Pilot App! Leave the capital city behind and make your way northwards to the most famous megalithic tomb in Ireland – Newgrange. It is said that Newgrange predates the Pyramids in Egypt by 600 years! Spend some time learning from your guide about the archaeology, mythology and astronomy of this special landmark.

It is now time to break the border and enter Northern Ireland and Belfast City. Your first port of call is the Titanic Experience – voted the world’s leading tourist attraction in 2016. All you need to know about the construction, the passengers and the fate of this doomed luxury liner will be revealed during your visit.

Spend the night enjoying Belfast’s fine eateries and lively watering holes.

Day 2Belfast City

Total driving distance & time: 45 minutes, excluding stops – depending on your afternoon options!

This morning begins with a Black Cab or Bike tour of Belfast City. Our friends will pick you up at your hotel and bring you on tour. These are the best ways to see the real Belfast and get an awesome insight into the history and modern times in Northern Ireland’s largest city. Let our local friends be your guides.

After a hearty lunch there is so much more to squeeze into your second day. Visit Stormont ParliamentCrumlin Gael or if you are a Game of Thrones fan take an afternoon trip around the filming locations. St. George’s Market is a treat if your tour falls Friday to Sunday.

You can relax at the end of another exciting day. No need to re-pack your bag tonight as you will spend another night in bustling Belfast and have a great sleep in one of our carefully handpicked accommodation.

Day 3Giant’s Causeway - Derry

Total driving distance & time: 175 km – 2 hours 20 minutes, excluding stops

Today you experience a test of mental strength but also a celebration for your soul. Giant’s Causeway is one of the most anticipated attractions on this Ireland self-drive tour — and it never disappoints!

But there’s far more to this stunning region. The Causeway Coastal Route passes through some of the most beautiful scenery on the island of Ireland. Crossing the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge is another highlight. Here, you make the exhilarating walk over the ocean below with nothing but air beneath your feet!

You will take a refreshing hike between the bridge and the Giant’s Causeway. Prepare yourself for entertaining stories about the giant, Finn McCool.

Make a pit stop at the ruins of the home of the Earl of Antrim at Dunluce Castle. Your next stop is Derry, Northern Ireland’s second-largest city, steeped in rich history.

Explore the city by night and look forward to a tour of the walled city tomorrow.

Day 4Glenveagh National Park – Adara

Total driving distance & time: 130 km – 2 hours, excluding stops

Before travelling deep into the wilds of Donegal, let one of our favorite tour guides lead you through the streets of Derry to help you understand the struggles of our past and the long road it has taken to current peaceful times we now enjoy in Northern Ireland.

On route to Glenveagh National Park, treat yourself to a pitstop at Grianan of Alleach, a 6th century hillfort built on top of the 244-meter-high Greenan Mountain at Inishowen, County Donegal.

Perched in the Donegal mountains, Glenveagh castle, gardens and park has so much to offer. The 16,000 hectares of the park includes the Derryveagh mountains, the Poisoned Glen which boasts hills and trails to follow for the afternoon. There are challenging routes for you to enjoy and more relaxed trails to take at your leisure. Why not try the cycle route?

An hour away you will settle in for the evening in the picturesque village of Ardara.

Day 5Slieve League – Donegal Castle

Total driving distance & time: 80 km – 1 hour 45 minutes, excluding stops

You will venture further into the Wild North West today!

Travelling south towards Donegal Town, we highly recommend you drive over the Glengesh Pass, make a stop at Assaranca Waterfalland the fabulous Maghera Beach and Caves.

Discover the truly breath-taking cliffs of Slieve League, standing at roughly 600 meters. Although less famous than the Cliffs of Moher, they stand three times as high and even more magnificent. Choose to hike along the cliffs or find your favorite view for some jealousy inducing photos.

Next up is a guided tour of the restored Donegal Castle – home of the wealthy and powerful O’Donnell Clan before enjoying the craic and colorful locals in Donegal Town.

Day 6Sligo – Westport

Total driving distance & time: 175 km – 2 hours 20 minutes, excluding stops

Rev up your engine and leave the North behind. Today will be spent discovering some of the fantastic sites on the West coast of our beautiful country.

Paddy will guide you on your road trip along the coast through Mullaghmore, Sligo and on to Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery.

Glencar Waterfall lies beneath the Benbulbin Mountain and was the inspiration for many of W.B. Yeats‘ poetry. Pull in and visit his grave on your way into Sligo.

Your road trip will take you to Ireland’s beloved town – Westport. Challenge yourself to climb Ireland’s holiest mountain. Croagh Patrick is 764 meters high and is a rewarding hike for the experienced and novice alike. Learn about the man responsible for St. Patrick’s Day. At its peak, you will be rewarded with a breath-taking, panoramic view of the 365 islands of Clew Bay

The evening is spent unwinding with some local craft beers and excellent food in Westport Town. And a visit to Westport would not be complete without a bit of “craic” at a traditional Irish music session in Matt Molloy’s bar.

Day 7Westport – Dublin

Total driving distance & time: 280 km – 3 hours 40 minutes, excluding stops

Today you will take a guided walking tour of Bohemian Galway City. Take your time to soak up the lively atmosphere of the city and wander in and out of the brightly coloured shops and cafes. Try on a Claddagh Ring or a Galway Shawl! Be careful though because you might never leave!

Try to dry your tears and look forward to your journey back to Dublin. Or if you haven’t had enough of our beautiful country why not extend your road trip and link up with an itinerary for the West and South!

Before you turn off the ignition and hand back your car we promise to arm you with plenty of great recommendations of things to do and see in Dublin if you have a couple of days left in Ireland.

Note: To confirm your booking, you are required to pay a non-refundable deposit of €300 per person for Self-Drive tours.

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!