This is a proposed 4-day tour itinary covering the West Coast of Ireland and the River Shannon.
The tour is optimised with four starting points which will enable you to begin your tour from you own location. This tour will allow you to follow a leisurely pace, seeing as much as possible of the area as your time allows. Many suggestions will be made for each area which will allow you to plan your activities.
Two routes are taken from Limerick City to Kilrush in West Clare; the first travels through Co. Limerick passing through Adare and then crossing over the Shannon at Tarbet. The second route travels through south Co. Clare passing Bunratty Castle and Ennis.
From Kilrush the route follows the coast through Kilkee, Lehinch and onto the Cliffs of Moher. It then meanders through the limestone pavements of the Burren until the coast is again reached overlooking Galway Bay at Ballyvaughan. Back on main roads, the route follows the coast to Galway City.
Starting Point 2 - Galway
Galway City is the capital of the west and will take a day to explore on its own. Flights are available from Galway airport to the Aran Islands and would be a highly recommended daytrip. From Galway, the route crosses the county past Lough Corrib to Clifden and up along the coast to Westport. From Westport you have a choice of following the coast past Achill Island or through Castlebar to Ballina and on to Sligo.
Starting Point 3 - Sligo
From Sligo we follow a coastal route past beaches and Ben Bulbin, through Co. Donegal to the fishing port of Killybegs. We then re-trace our steps back to Sligo by the original route or through the Erne valley and then head inland towards the River Shannon. This days tour ends at the river port of Carrick-on-Shannon.
Starting Point 4 - Carrick-on-Shannon.
On day 4 we follow the River Shannon from Lough Ree to Athlone, then Lough Derg past the monastic settlement of Clonmacnoise before heading west to the main Galway / Limerick road so we can pass Bunratty Castle as we complete our tour by returning to Limerick City.