Cycling south of Galway in Clare County, Ireland. Flickr:daspunkt

Traditional Irish stew, soda bread & Guinness! Flickr:daspunkt
4.7/5 (3 ratings)

Clare and the Burren Bike Tour

Ireland Bike Tours

A County Clare cycling tour

  • If you want to experience a taste of Ireland’s musical heritage, you could not have picked a better Ireland cycling tour. Clare is the music center of Ireland and on this tour, you are sure to have your feet tapping to traditional tunes nearly every night of the week. The Burren region is also an amazing limestone moonscape, famous around the world for its wonderful variety of botany. The area is rich in ancient and early Christian historical sites and offers some beautiful coastal cycling overlooking Galway Bay that will give this Ireland bike tour memories you won't soon forget. Finally, you can bike the Cliffs of Moher in County Clare, one of the best-known and most breathtaking landmarks of Ireland.

    Highlights:

    • Ennis
    • Cliffs of Moher
    • Village of Doolin (famous for its three pubs that compete to provide the best music
    • Spectacular coastal rides
    • Limestone landscape of the Burren
    • Overnights in coastal towns/villages

    This tour encompasses the very best of Ireland from start to finish!

    All of our bike tours in Ireland can be found here.

  • April, May, June & September: £ 743 $ 1,648 875 $ 1318 NOK 8240 kr 7606 $ 989

    July & August: £ 773 $ 1,714 910 $ 1371 NOK 8569 kr 7910 $ 1,028

    Single supplement: £ 217 $ 480 255 $ 384 NOK 2401 kr 2217 $ 288

    Supplement for solo traveler: £ 336 $ 744 395 $ 595 NOK 3720 kr 3433 $ 446

    extra options

    Extra nights: on request
    Electric bicycle rental:  £ 85 $ 188 100 $ 151 NOK 942 kr 869 $ 113 * On request. Limited number available. 

    please note

    Rates are per person based on double occupancy.

    Information to read before you book.

    We recommend purchasing bike trip insurance.

    Please see our FAQ.

  • Travel

    Fly into Shannon International Airport (SNN/EINN) or Dublin International Airport (DUB). Shannon is the closest airport but Dublin will have more route options.

    Local Travel

    Shannon Airport:
    Bus Eireann provides connections to and from all of Ireland’s major cities. From the airport, the city center of Ennis is only 13 miles away and costs approx. €13. If you prefer a taxi, the cost will be approx. €35.
    Dublin Airport:

    1. Bus + train:
      Take the Airlink shuttle (bus) service into Dublin city where you can transfer to a train to Ennis from Heuston Station. Bus requires exact currency on the bus which is approximately €6 for a single adult ticket into the city. The train to Ennis takes approx 2 hrs 20 mins. Details of all train travel are on IrishRail
    2. Bus:
      There is a bus service direct from Dublin city to Ennis available. Check BusEireann for more info

    Climate

    Ireland is called the Emerald Isle. The rolling, green hills and lush landscapes are possible because of the frequent rainfall so don’t forget your rain gear, as well as your sun hat, as a day that starts with rain, can end with glorious sunshine! However, because it is an island, located near the gulf stream, Ireland has a very mild climate making it ideal for cycling. The temperature range during the summer is between 15 and 22 degrees centigrade (60 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit).

    Remarks

    if you wish to use toe clips please bring your own pedals with toe clips (and spanner) which you can attach to your bikes, as they come with flat pedals). You can also bring your own saddle which should be possible to attach. There are a limited number of electric bikes available for this tour. Please request at the time of booking.

    Documents

    Before you travel, please check your country's passport and visa requirements and the passport and visa requirements of the country/countries you plan to visit. For US citizens, the US Department of State website is a good source of information. The Country Information tab in the International Travel section provides details about passport validity, blank passport pages required, etc. For our other international clients, please be sure that you research your own country's travel requirements. It is each traveler's responsibility to ensure proper documentation.

    *Important note: Beginning July 1, 2021, additional documentation from the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) will be required to visit any of the 26 Schengen-member countries for tourism, business, medical, or transit. This is an additional check on security rather than a visa.

    More on self-guided vs. supported

    Self-guided tours assume a level of independence and a desire to cycle at your own pace without the pressure of cycling with a group or guide. GPS tracks are available as well as good maps and route descriptions. For this tour, on the set departure dates, you will have the back-up of a guide and support van if the bookings reach 8 or more. The aim is to allow you feel like an independent traveler, free to cycle each day at your own pace while at the same time having the security of knowing that support is close by!  If bookings are less than 8, you must be prepared to cycle completely self-guided.


Tour Dates

2020

Self-guided: Daily arrival possible from April 18 to October 3, 2020
Supported*: May 23, July 18, and August 22, 2020

If there are less than 8 people booked on the tour, it will be conducted as a traditional self-guided tour. However, if there are more than 8 people on a set departure date,  a guide in a support van will be assigned. Each person will still have their own route details and maps and have the freedom to cycle at their own pace each day, however, there is the security of a person in the background offering assistance if and when it is needed.

 

Skill Level

Easy to Moderate, self-guided or supported hotel tour. The roads are all tarmaced and the route is designed to ensure that you spend most of the week on quiet back roads. Occasionally it will be necessary to ride on busier roads which is unavoidable as there may be no minor roads on certain stretches of the route. To experience the majestic scenery of this area the route does have some climbs, so it is worth getting a few weekends training on a bike in varied terrain before coming thus ensuring that you can fully enjoy the week. It will make your time in the saddle much more enjoyable. Cycling requires a good command of your bike, good balance, and the ability to stop and start quickly.

Where You’ll Stay

You will be staying in guesthouses, B&B’s, or occasionally small hotels. Below in the day to day details, you will find the preferred accommodations listed. The majority of the time, these small establishments do not have elevators so please pack accordingly. All hotel bookings are based on availability. If the preferred accommodation is not possible, a suitable alternative of equal standard will be booked.

What’s Included

  • Accommodations for 7 nights
  • Full Irish breakfasts
  • One evening meal in Ballyvaughan
  • 24 speed Giant CIty hybrid bicycle with a rear rack, pannier bag (not waterproof), repair equipment, lock, and bottle cage
  • Helmet is provided but only for supported tour
  • Luggage transfer
  • All route details and maps
  • GPS tracks on request
  • Also included for the Supported tour:
  • Guide in support van on set departure dates with minimum of 8 people

What’s Not Included

  • Individual arrival to your first hotel
  • Lunches (approx. €10 to €15 per lunch)
  • Remaining dinners (one is included, approx. €20 to €30 per dinner
  • Helmets (may be rented at local bike shop, €10)
  • Bicycle Protection
  • Travel Insurance

Extra Stay

It is possible to request extra accommodation in Ennis at the start or end of your tour. We do not assist with extra nights in Dublin. If you are planning to spend a few days in Dublin at the end of the tour, we recommend that you book accommodation well in advance as the capital is very busy on weekends.

TourBike
TypeBoth
SkillEasy–Moderate
Length8 days
From875 Rates
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Day-To-Day Itinerary

Clare and the Burren Map

Day 1: Arrival in Ennis, Co. Clare
Day 2: Ennis to Spanish Point, 30 mi. (48 km)
Day 3: Spanish Point to Doolin, 29 mi. (46 km)
Day 4: Doolin to Ballyvaughan, 31 mi. (50 km)
Day 5: Rest day in Ballyvaughan
Day 6: Ballyvaughan to Kinvara, 24 mi. (39 km)
Day 7: Kinvara to Ennis, 31 mi. (49 km)
Day 8: Departure from Ennis

*All distances are approximate. Due to circumstances beyond control, weather conditions or provisions issued by local authorities, therefore the itinerary may be subject to some changes before and/or during your holiday. For example, along the way you may find temporary deviations/detours caused by roadwork, In this case, please follow the directions posted on site.

Day 1: Ennis, Co. Clare
On arrival in Ennis, you will make your way to your B&B. Check-in is after 2:00 pm on the day of arrival. A folder containing your route details and information on collection of your bikes will be waiting for you at the guesthouse. Ennis is a fantastic town for music and entertainment so the rest of the day can be spent relaxing and enjoying the sights.

Accommodation: Ashford Court Hotel

Day 2: Ennis - Spanish Point, 30 mi. (48 km)
In the morning you will cycle towards West Clare, cycling along quiet country roads through rolling green fields to the Coast. You stay the night in a comfortable Hotel at Spanish Point. The area gets its name named from those Spanish Armada Ships which sank here in 1588 during their retreat home to Spain.

Accommodation: Bellbridge Hotel

Day 3: Spanish Point - Doolin, 29 mi. (46 km)
Cycling along quiet country roads you meander your way to the popular holiday town of Lahinch where you stop for lunch. In the afternoon, you visit the Cliffs of Moher which rise a spectacular 660 ft up from the Atlantic waves below. You can stroll along the cliff face and watch the birds gliding in the updraft. After visiting the cliffs you head to the village of Doolin. That night you can have a pub meal and enjoy the wealth of traditional music for which the village is famous.

Accommodation: Suantrai B & B or Seascape

Day 4: Doolin - Ballyvaughan, 31 mi. (50 km)
In the morning you begin to see the first hints of the limestone landscape of the Burren and visit the monastic site at Kilfenora and its stone high crosses. Kilfenora is also home to the Burren Heritage Centre which gives you an excellent insight into the formation and history of the Burren. Later you can stop off for lunch at the matchmaking town of Lisdoonvarna.
The afternoon's cycle is a beautiful run where the road hugs the coastline with Galway Bay and the Aran Islands on your left and the limestone cliffs of the Burren on your right. You stop for two nights in our comfortable hotel in the seaside village of Ballyvaughan.

Accommodation: Wild Atlantic Lodge or Hylands Hotel

Day 5: Rest day in Ballyvaughan 
The day can be spent doing a wide variety of activities. There is a wonderful four-hour walking tour of the Burren with a local man who is a very entertaining character and an encyclopedia of knowledge on the area. There is also an optional short cycle to the impressive ruins of a Cistercian Abbey or you could visit the nearby Ailwee Caves. Alternatively, the day could be spent relaxing in this attractive village.

Accommodation: Wild Atlantic Lodge or Hylands Hotel

Day 6: Ballyvaughan - Kinvarra, 24 mi. (39 km)
The cycle heads straight into the heart of the Burren where you can visit the locality and most famous historical sight, the Poulnabrowne Dolmen a small ancient burial site dating back to 2500BC. Veering off the beaten track you can stop at the village of Carran for lunch in an old police barracks. In the afternoon, you cycle through quiet backroads to visit the Burren Perfumery which makes a wide variety of perfumes using the local flora and has a wonderful slide show illustrating the beautiful and unique botany of this region. You then descend through a limestone lunar landscape to the pretty seaside village of Kinvarra where you spend the night.

Accommodation: Kinarva Guesthouse or Fallon's B & B

Day 7: Kinvarra - Ennis, 31 mi. (49 km)
For the last day, you head back into the Burren through another limestone moonscape, passing Lough Buny and the impressive Mullaghmore before stopping for lunch in Corafin. In the afternoon, you can visit a 16th Century Tower House and an even older monastic sight . This is also the site of the famous battle of Dysert O’Dea where the Irish Chieftains defeated the Normans and kept them out of Clare for another 200 years. You then cycle back into Ennis for a final night on the town.

Accommodation: Ashford Court Hotel

Day 8: Departure

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Tour Reviews

  • Karen R. 4 months ago     Verified Reviewer

    Wonderful scenic cycle routes with well-planned stops and comfortable accommodation

  • Cely de Souza Freitas 3 years ago     Verified Reviewer

    Fiz esse passeio de bike, sozinha, de 08/08/2016 a 15/08/2016, com uma pequena alteraçõ pois terminou em Galway. Foi INCRÍVEL, uma experiência MARAVILHOSA, a empresa prestou um serviço PERFEITO, PRECISO E IMPECÁVEL. Minhas surpresa e satisfação motivaram iniciar preparação para mais uma aventura, desta vez, na Alemanha, que já conheço, mas, desta vez, farei de bicicleta. Muito obrigada por tudo e até breve.

  • K. Hatcher 3 years ago     Verified Reviewer

    The most memorable part was the scenic route along the Burren and the Wild Atlantic Way. It was 22 km of beautiful ocean views and incredible landscape. It was also amazing to see the Cliffs of Moher.

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