Donegal Coastal Treasures Bike Tour – Itinerary
Day 1: Arrive Donegal Town.
Your cycling holiday begins in historic Donegal Town. It was from here that the O Donnell Chieftians once ruled over much of the northern half of Ireland. Their imperssive castle still stands in the town centre. Donegal has direct bus services from both Dublin and Ireland West airports, making travelling to your bike tour start point quite easy. On your arrival you can spend the evening relaxing in this very pleasant town with its many great pubs and restaurants.
Day 2: Around Lough Eske. 26 km
Following breakfast we will meet you to provide you with everything you need for your upcoming bike tour and to answer any questions you may have. You will then be set to begin your new cycling adventure. Your first day of cycling takes you around tranquil Lough Eske, nestled at the foot of the Bluestack Mountains. Back in Donegal you can visit the 15th Century Donegal Castle, or take a trip on the Donegal Bay Waterbus. Alternatively you can spend the evening relaxing (or shopping if you like!).
Day 3: Donegal to Killybegs. 38 – 53 km
Today you cycle along the ever-changing coastline between Donegal and Killybegs. You’ll pass quiet bays, beaches and inlets. Cycle along narrow peninsulas and headlands. Bike along St. John’s Point, where the Atlantic Ocean will lie on both your left and right. The views in all directions here are magnificent. Continue west to your overnight destination in the bustling fishing village of Killybegs, where much of Ireland’s Atlantic catch is landed.
Day 4: Killybegs to Carrick. 21 – 35 km
West of Killybegs you cycle along one of the most memorable stretches of coastline you will ever see. Cycle through Kilcar, a centre for traditional tweed production, before reaching your overnight destination of Carrick. A short bike trip from Carrick brings you to the stunning Sliabh Liag (Slieve League) Cliffs – one of Ireland’s greatest treasures and a sight not to be missed. Here you also have the opportunity to view the cliffs from below, with a boat trip from nearby Teelin Pier.
Day 5: Carrick – Glencolmcille – Carrick. 25 – 33 km
Today your cycling holiday brings you through 5,000 years of Irish History. The title of a book about the area, “5,000 Years in Stone” says it all. Stone age court tombs, dolmens from the bronze age, early Christian standing stones and Celtic ring forts which are overlooked by a watchtower from the Napoleonic era are amongst the sights to behold. Set in one of the most beautiful spots you will ever visit, there could hardly be a better place to explore by bike.
Day 6: Carrick to Ardara. 22 km
Cycle over wild boglands as you climb gradually to emerge at the head of dramatic Glengesh Valley. The bike ride down the valley will be one to remember. Choose between stopping to admire the amazing views or enjoying the thrill of the descent. At the bottom of the valley is your overnight destination in the heritage town of Ardara. This lively town has a great selection of pubs, many of which feature regular traditional music sessions.
Day 7: Around Ardara. 0 – 35 km
The possibilities today are endless; take the leisurely 8 km bike ride along beautiful Loughros Point. Alternatively, cycle to the golden sandy beach, caves and waterfall at Maghera. A third option is to cycle around Dawros Head. Here you can step back in time to view the Kilclooney Dolmen, and the mystical Doon Lough Fort. The choice is yours! Return once again to Ardara and spend another night exploring its many nice pubs.
Day 8: Ardara to Donegal. 30 km
Cycle back to your starting point in Donegal Town. Cross more wild boglands as you climb out of the town. Great views open up over Donegal Bay with its many headlands and islands. Enjoy one last descent to the pleasant village of Mountcharles. Return to your starting point in Donegal Town, completing your biking tour around the beautiful and historic coast of Donegal.
Day 9: Depart
Following breakfast it is time to depart — taking with you memories of your cycling adventures in one of the world’s most beautiful places.