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A Taste of the South

Come face to face with some of Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way for a spectacular road trip made up of cliffs, castles and characters. There are many culinary delights to discover and friendly locals to meet.
Exploring Ireland is easy. In the countryside the roads are excellent, well signposted and largely toll free. Distances between towns are short and driving is on the left hand side of the road, same as in New Zealand.


Suggested Itinerary
Day 1: Dublin – Wicklow (64km)
Explore the Wicklow Mountains National Park bursting with beauty. Visit the 6th century Glendalough Monastic Site and walk a trail through this spectacular site, carved out in an Ice Age.

Day 2: Wicklow – Wexford – Waterford (146km)
Travel down the coast and see where Vikings made their mark in Ireland - looting monasteries, fighting kings for treasures and taking Irish people as slaves.

Day 3: Waterford – Killarney – Cahir (113km)
Kilkenny is the third point of the Viking triangle, medieval and modern, wander down a laneway and you never know what century you’ll end up in. After exploring Cashel rest your head in historic Cahir.

Day 4: Cahir – Cork – Killarney (186km)
From Cork visit Blarney Castle and the legendary Blarney Stone.

Day 5: Killarney – Dingle Peninsula – Dingle (65km)
Pass through the rugged countryside with beautiful lakes and mountain scenery on your way to Dingle Peninsula. Dingle is a charming town with brightly painted pubs and shops and great seafood restaurants.

Day 6: Dingle – Limerick – Doolin – Galway (154km)
Drive through The Burren to the spectacular Cliffs of Moher, then to Doolin, the traditional music capital of Ireland and end your day in Galway.

Day 7: Galway – Dublin (208km)
Explore the city on a foodie walking tour before returning to Dublin.

Customise this itinerary to travel at your own pace. 
Continue north to add on the Causeway Coastal Route.


Highlights worth seeing along the way
Fairbrook House Gardens –
 3.5 acre romantic walled artist’s garden and 3 acre woodland garden on the River Dawn.
House of Waterford Crystal – See the magic of a molten blob crafted to a twinkling masterpiece.
Eat your way around a food trail – Follow the streets of Kilkenny mixing music, food, Norman castles, ancient monasteries, farmers markets, and chat with food producers, chefs and traditional musicians.
Butter Slip, Kilkenny – This gorgeous narrow stone alley was built in 1616 and was once flanked with the stalls of butter vendors on market day.
Blasket Islands – Hop on a 20 minute ferry ride from tiny Dunquin Harbour to Great Blasket. See the wildlife on a boat trip around the island.
Cloghar Headland – Venture off the main route, stop for a slice of lemon drizzle cake or a goat’s cheese salad in the café at Cloghar.
Milk Market in Limerick – Such a lot of fun, it’s colourful, energetic, with artisan foods, antiques, music and art.
Burren Smokehouse – At the visitors’ centre you can taste Burren smoked salmon and learn about the history and smoking process.
Venture to smaller villages – Like the ancient Tuam with its cathedrals or Abbeyknockmoy with ruins of a 13th century Cistercian Abbey.


Our favourite places to stay 
• Chester Beatty Inn, Wicklow
• Cahir House Hotel, Cahir
• Dingle Harbour Lodge, Dingle
• Jury’s Inn Galway, Galway


Choosing your Rental Car
Take into consideration the size of the vehicle you require. We strongly recommend a minimum 1.4 litre for two adults. If the vehicle is to be used for day touring from a central base and not for transporting your luggage, a smaller vehicle may be adequate. We suggest you book your car before leaving home as this will save money and ensure you get the car of your choice.

View for more HOT UK & Europe road trips

Image credit: Tourism Ireland

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