Sometimes we forget the true beauty that lies on our doorstep. Ireland is full of adventure and is waiting for you to explore it this summer. We know a road trip with a car full of children needs to have the right mixture of splendor, education and fun so we have come up with 5 road trips in Ireland that you will be looking forward to trying this summer as a family. Divide the road trip into sections to be sure to make the most of it. Take your time and enjoy the beauty and nature along the way.
One of our favourite road trips of all time! This is one for the kids and adults alike. Plenty of fun activities spotted along the way to keep everyone entertained. The beauty that surrounds you on the drive and breath taking scenery makes it a perfect road trip adventure for everybody.
Top tips on attractions you might like to stop at in East Cork:
- Stop off in Fota Wildlife Park and go explore it. The park is not like your ordinary zoo. At Fota you can come face to face with free roaming animals and birds from all parts of the world. You can watch the amazement on your child’s face as a kangaroo hops in front of them, as they feed the spectacular birds or as a ring tailed lemur jumps down from a tree to try steal their lunch. Be sure to check out their amazing tropical house too.
- For the older kids, stop off in Aghada to Neptune Kayak. Go on a water adventure (Stand up paddle boarding, kayaking etc) with them for a few hours and tire them out. Great way to have a splash of fun on the road trip.
- Stop off at Stephen Pearce’s pottery and spend time admiring their beautiful, creative work. We love seeing the two lovebirds perched in the shop, who also provide a little entertainment for the kids. A great spot to grab a cuppa before heading on the road again.
- A beach we stumbled upon during our own road trip in East Cork is Ardnahinch Beach. Located just five minutes up the road towards Shanagarry. It’s like a secret beach. Ardnahinch Beach is situated with a beautiful view of Ballycotton lighthouse.
A road trip around beautiful Clare, a place full of adventure, history and fun! A great place to explore and discover Irelands West Coast.
Top tips on attractions you might like to stop at in County Clare:
- You can’t go on a road trip in Clare and not visit one the most popular tourist spots in Ireland. The Cliffs of Moher - Standing 702 feet high, it is a stop that will take your breath away.
- Located in the heart of the Burren lies the Aillwee Caves. Full of wonder, exploration and discovery. While you are there, why not stay for the birds of prey demonstration, which is set against the beautiful Burren scenery.
- Enjoy the adventures of Lahinch beach. As you walk down the beach, you see lots of surfers enjoying the waves. The beach is full of activity with people walking, running, strolling, building castles and playing football. For the more adventurous on the beach try your hand at surfing, kayaking and even swimming (with a wetsuit...it is Ireland after all!).
- Everybody loves a bit of Father Ted. This famous house in Clare became the location for the very popular ‘Fr. Ted’ television series. Why not go off the beaten track and spot the house on your road trip. Be sure to bring your camera and take your picture outside the house. We have to smile when we think of all the fun times and laughter ‘Father Ted’ has given us!
RING OF KERRY
A typical Irish road trip but did you know most Irish people wont explore what’s on their doorstep. Be sure to check out this road trip during the summer… you might just be surprised at the beauty that surrounds you in the Kingdom.
Top tips on attractions you might like to stop at on the Ring of Kerry:
- Be sure to make plenty of stops to just take in the beauty of the lakes, coastline and mountains. Take your time and enjoy the beauty and nature. Don’t make a plan and just take it all in and enjoy the journey and beauty.
- Stop off at Ballinskelligs Beach. Although most beaches in Ireland are beautiful, there are some beaches that just capture your heart as soon as your toes touch the sand. Ballinskelligs beach is definitely one of them! There are also numerous rock pools to keep the children entertained while they look for sea creatures, along with McCarthy’s castle which stands proudly on the west end of the beach!
- Derrynane is a beautiful seaside village. It is not one to be missed. In the summer months you’ll find it to be brimming with laughter, sunshine, BBQs and friendly faces outside the pub in the middle of the town – one could not but have a good time whilst there!
- Portmagee is another picturesque seaside town and a hive of activity and laughter during the summer. Portmagee is located on the Iveragh Penninsula south of Valentia Island. Although you can access Valentia Island by ferry if you wish to but you can also cross via a bridge from Portmagee – (which is great fun to drive over!) Successfully capturing everything that is beautiful about rural Ireland in one village – it is a definite hidden gem you must visit this Summer! Beautiful cafes, a bookshop brimming with novels, fantastic 99s, a port with several pretty sailing boats, gorgeous walks… it really has it all!
A road trip that is part of the Wild Atlantic Way. A scenic road trip taking toIreland's northernmost point Malin Head, along with great adventures.
Top tips on attractions you might like to stop at in Coastal Donegal:
- Malin Head is a must on this road trip. The most northerly point in Ireland. A spot full of history, while also providing lots of activities including walking, fishing, swimming and even bird watching. A perfect spot for a picnic break on your road trip.
- Bundoran in Co. Donegal is known as the surf capital of Ireland and has lots of amazing surf, beaches and surf schools. Travel along the coast for some big waves, clean waters and great surfing.
- Glenveagh National Park is a great place to stop with the kids. Perfect for young explorers who are begging to get out of the car! Glenveagh National Park lies northwest of Co. Donegal and is one of six national parks in Ireland. It’s beauty lies in the heart of the Derryveagh Mountains.
- If you are feeling very adventurous, why not try surfing or even blo-karting with SurfnTurf. End the day with a splash! Or if you would prefer something a little more relaxed and chilled out why not end your road trip by experiencing the sunset while stand up paddle boarding in Bundoran. An experience to be remembered and a memory to treasure.
This is especially for or all our Dublin followers. A road trip that will take you out of the hustle and bustle of Dublin city and into a world of peace and tranquility in Co. Wicklow.
Top tips on attractions you might like to stop at in Wicklow:
- Sugarloaf: The Great Sugar Loaf Mountain dominates the skyline as you drive south from Dublin to Wicklow. Though only 501 metres (1,644 ft) high, its isolation from other hills, steep slopes and volcanic appearance makes it appear much taller than it is. The unique mountain stands apart from the rest of the upland and is instantly recognisable by its conical shape. The hiking route starts in a designated car park, and the obvious track leads you up around the base where the view in every direction you turn has something different to offer! A steep climb to your right (hands and feet required!) will take you to the summit!
- Wicklow Mountains National Park is about a 30minute drive from the Sugarloaf. It provides spectacular scenery of the mountains and wilderness. Why not spend a few days exploring the wilderness and camp out in the national park. Get the full experience of peace and tranquility. Be sure to visit Glendalough, which is a popular spot for visitors. A perfect combination of beautiful scenery and monastic history.
- Why not drive along the coastline of Wicklow and just enjoy the beauty. It stretches the length of the county and you can enjoy over 60km of stunning scenery. Along the way, you will be able to explore like a local and discover the many towns, beaches, villages and harbours.
- The Bray to Greystones cliff walk is a must! 6.2 kms of wildlife and beauty along the Wicklow coastline. A perfect activity to break up the road trip.
Bring on the Road Trips of the Summer