Biking For Softies – 7 Best Easygoing Bike Tours in Ireland

We’re back again and ready for another healthy portion of Irish softie adventures. Today,  it’s cycling for softies and the 7  best easygoing bike tours in Ireland.

Not all enjoyable cycle routes have to be physically demanding and intense. Easy-going tours are meant to take the umph out of the ride and allow you to focus on the spectacular scenery, the culture, the food, and the experience of your trip.

For most leisurely tours the landscape is often made up of gently rolling hills, meandering cycle pathways, easy roads, and enjoyable urban rides. This allows you to focus more on the journey rather than the destination as you enjoy cycling as much as possible during your days in the saddle. Take your time, meander a little bit, and take it all in as you pass through the Irish countryside and exciting towns and villages.

Our easy-going and leisurely rides aren’t just for beginners; they’re perfect for families, senior riders, and those just wanting a less intense cycling experience.

E-Bikes Hire are available on most trips.

Sometimes the joy of discovering a new place can be lost in the struggle up a long climb or along a challenging route. With e-bikes, casual riders will have more flexibility to focus on the beauty around them—without ever worrying about saving energy to make it up the next hill. With a boost from the battery, you never have to choose between reaching the next vista and having happy legs the next morning!  Our softie bike rides below are proof that you don’t need thighs of steel to see the parts of Ireland on two wheels… So grab life by the handlebars and pedal some of these fantastic landscapes around the island of Ireland.

Inis Oirr, Aran Islands, County Clare

For a glimpse at the true Ireland, visit the Aran Islands with us by ferry, and cycle around the legendary Inis Oirr (the smallest and least inhabited island). This is a Gaelic-speaking wonder, full of jaw-dropping scenery, ancient low stone walls and local characters. According to many, this remote wonderland is best explored by bike. Inis Oírr (Inisheer) is very bike-friendly, with little traffic, and cycling gives you the luxury of exploring the island at your own pace. The island has a lot to offer such as The Plassy Shipwreck, O’ Briens Castle and The Lighthouse.

The Gap of Dunloe, Killarney, County Kerry

Killarney has many route options to take advantage of, but the Gap of Dunloe is number one. Start your day with picturesque a boat ride through the 3 lakes of Killarney with folklore and legends delivered by the local boat drivers before a thrilling descent by bike through the Gap of Dunloe. The Gap of Dunloe is a narrow mountain pass forged between the MacGillycuddy Reeks and Purple Mountain by glacial flows. The river running through the gap is the river Loe from where the Gap gets its name.  The road, narrow in many places, winds through the pass and descends into The Black Valley passing five lakes, Coosaun Lough, Black Lake, Cushnavally Lake, Auger Lake and Black Lough. A final ride into Killarney where your Kerry adventure comes to an end.

Connemara & Clifden , County Galway. 

Connemara has a stunning coastal landscape of rugged cliffs, labyrinthine inlets, billowing grasslands and craggy mountains. Coupled with enchanting history and vibrant culture, Connemara’s environs make for an awesome week of biking. Bike through sparsely populated Connemara, a land peppered with small loughs (lakes) and villages. Traditions thrive here, where the lilt of Gaelic is ubiquitous. Explore a winding route along Ireland’s windswept western coast. Cycle meandering country roads, where breathtaking views of the sapphire ocean, windblown grasses and golden beaches abound. Taste mouthwatering salmon on a lively smokehouse tour. Hear the heartbeat of pub music with a stirring bodhran demonstration.

Killarney National Park, Killarney, County Kerry. 

This ride is an excellent introduction to cycling in the Killarney National Park, a 3-hour flat ride that takes you out of Killarney town and through classic rolling scenery to reach Torc Waterfall, one of the largest in Ireland. Take a rest and enjoy the sounds of the water crashing down the green moss-covered rocks, Follow the path around the lake then turn back towards the Muckross House, enjoying stunning views of the lower lake and McGillicuddy Reeks. Upon return expect a mix of paved road and forest trails. Highlights may include sightings of rare red deer herds in native oak forest, a centuries-old yew tree at the centre of a ruined abbey and idyllic lakeside and mountain views, all towards a well-earned brew at the end of the day.

Slea Head, Dingle Peninsula, County Kerry

Heading west from Dingle on your E-Bike, cycle via Ventry to Slea Head taking in striking panoramas of the peninsula and look out at the Blasket Islands and nearby Dunmore Head, where clans gathered to mediate local conflicts. (Alternatively, you can cycle to Dunquinn harbour and take the ferry to the Great Blasket Island and enjoy a walk around this mystical and enchanting place). The road is mostly quiet and you won’t find yourself puffing up long steep hills, but there’s a satisfying downhill stretch on one side.  For a fresh snack along the way, you’ll find wee Pubs stocked with produce straight from the local waters. If there’s time, drop into Dingle Crystal & Workshop a family business specialising in hand-cut Irish crystal and see master craftsman Sean Daly at his workshop in Dingle.

Valentia Island, Ring of Kerry, County Kerry

Valentia Island in Kerry is up there with the best cycling experiences. Saddle up for an adventure of a lifetime. Explore the island on your bike with stunning views of the famous Skellig Islands (UNESCO World Heritage site and Star Wars filming location). Discover one of Ireland’s most westerly points and home of the first transatlantic telegraph cable. The island is situated off the South West coast of Kerry and is connected to the mainland by a bridge at Portmagee or you can take a ferry from Reen point. The island is renowned for its great beauty, ecological wonders and historical importance with many spectacular viewing points. Take the time to discover its many hidden gems, why Westminster Abbey is so closely connected and stare out over the vast wild Atlantic Ocean and rekindle your Celtic spirit.

 

Waterford Greenway, Ballyvoyle Tunnel, Co Waterford

The picturesque Waterford Greenway hugs the coastline as it follows old railway lines from lively Waterford City, through the foothills of the Comeragh Mountains and onto the pretty harbour town of Dungarvan. You can walk part of the way, cycle in both directions or cycle one way and get the bus back to Waterford from Dungarvan. With plenty of pit-stops and trailside attractions along the way, exploring the 46km route really is a perfect short break.

Other cycling options include Donegal’s Glenveagh National Park, a remote wilderness with a beauty that will stay with you forever once you witness it. Visit the castle on the edge of Lough Veagh and take in the wonderful surroundings from the saddle in this unforgettable part of Ireland.
Another gem of a cycling route is the Greenway in County Mayo, a pristine 42km stretch of a disused railway line between the towns of Achill and Westport. Along the route lie superb views of Clew Bay and Achill Island with many nearby attractions like Croagh Patrick and Westport House.

 

That’s all we have for today. We hope w’ve inspired you to cycle parts of the Wild Atlantic Way. These amazing routes along the west coast of Ireland deserve to be part of your next Irish adventure.

Comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.