Renowned for its beautiful, breath-taking scenery, Ireland is the perfect spot for adventurers planning to embark on a road trip. When you visit the island, you can expect stunning panoramic views, plenty of history and a warm welcome from the locals.
Ireland is the ideal place to explore by car, and it's clear to see why. As well as the state-of-the-art roads that conveniently link its cities and towns, you can also wander off the beaten track for an awe-inspiring and picturesque drive.
So, whether you plan to hire a car when you get there, or bring your own car for the trip, we’ve compiled a list of our favourite drives in Ireland for you to experience the amazing natural beauty that it offers. Buckle up!
1. Wild Atlantic Way
Covering 1,500 miles along the west of Ireland, this coastal drive starts at County Donegal to County Cork. The road takes you through towering cliffs to many iconic landmarks, like the jaw-dropping Cliffs of Moher, which are 702 feet high and 8 miles long.
We highly recommend driving the Wild Atlantic Way if you have enough time on your trip. This once in a lifetime drive will take you from remote areas beneath skies lit up by the northern lights (the stunning Northern Headlands), to the bustling and cosmopolitan city of Cork.
2. Dublin to Portlaoise via Wicklow Mountains
Go from the bustling capital to the remote countryside by starting your journey in Dublin and heading to Portlaoise, with a stop at Wicklow Mountains. En-route, you can visit Ireland’s highest waterfall, Powerscourt Waterfall, which is located in a stunning valley surrounded by jagged mountains.
Make sure you plan your route to include a drive down Sally Gap Mountain Pass, where you’ll get spectacular views of the surrounding blanket bog and the Wicklow Mountains. It’s an exciting road, full of twists and turns and definitely not for the faint-hearted - but it’s well-worth the breath-taking views.
If you’re planning a trip to Ireland, we’d recommend either taking your own car or hiring one whilst you’re there – as long as it can tackle the mixture of modern and rural roads. With everything well-connected to travel by car, you could enjoy some of the beautiful landscapes, the architecture and natural delights that Ireland has to offer.