Traveling from Dublin to Galway has never been so green. Visit the two bustling Irish cities, tapping your toes to traditional music sessions, exploring foodie scenes with your taste buds, and chasing historic tales through cobblestone streets. In between, hike the scenic paths in the Wicklow Mountains, including the famous Glendalough Trail that passes through a 1,500-year-old settlement.

Highlights

  • Hike the Wicklow Mountains
  • Experience the ancient streets of Dublin
  • Listen to traditional music in Galway City
  • Visit a 1,500-year-old town

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Dublin - Explore Dublin
Day 2 Hike the Wicklow Mountains - Roundwood to Laragh Laragh
Day 3 Explore the famous Glendalough Trail Laragh
Day 4 Travel to Galway - Explore Galway
Day 5 Goodbye, Ireland  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Dublin - Explore

Downtown Dublin, Ireland.
Downtown Dublin, Ireland.

Welcome to Ireland! Upon arrival to the airport in Dublin, you'll make your way to the bustling city center and find your hotel. After checking in, we recommend a bit of exploring.  The city is steeped in history and there is an abundance of activities to enjoy, including museums and memorials, as well as restaurants, cafes, cathedrals, and churches. Each site offers a slice of insight into what makes Dublin such a special city.

Suggested activities include:

  • Temple Bar is at the heart of the city, filled with a buzz only felt in Ireland. Wander the cobblestone streets and follow the sound of traditional music wafting from the pubs and restaurants. Stop for a Guinness or some fish and chips.
  • No visit to Dublin is complete without a stop at the Guinness Storehouse. This site continues to be one of the most popular tourist attractions in the world, and you will see why as soon as you step foot into the factory. Learn how the popular beer has been brewed for centuries and enjoy a pint at the top with panoramic views of the city.
  • If the weather is nice, take a stroll around tranquil St. Stephen's Green. End your walk along Grafton Street for a little retail therapy or to grab dinner at one of the many cafes lining the side streets.
  • Walk the historic campus of Trinity College Dublin and stop to see the amazing Book of Kells. You'll see publications dating back to 800 AD.

Day 2: Hike the Wicklow Mountains - Roundwood to Laragh

Hiking in Ireland

Today you'll be transferred from Dublin to the village of Roundwood where you will start your hike in the enchanting Wicklow Mountains. Leaving Roundwood, you'll walk over Paddock Hill to the village of Laragh at the entrance to the valley of Glendalough. The scenic hike takes you around the perimeter of the Barton Estate before taking a detour from Wicklow Way to the top of Scarr Mountain. From here you descend via a historic mass path—pathways used by Catholics attending illegal mass during penal times—to your overnight accommodation in Laragh.

Roundwood to Laragh Hiking Details:

  • Distance: 7.5 miles (12 km) to Laragh
  • Approximately 4 hours
  • Maximum height: 360 meters
  • Terrain: Some road walking, a mountain path, and a forest track

Day 3: Explore the famous Glendalough Trail

Wicklow Way
Wicklow Way

Today gives you an opportunity to explore the environs of Glendalough in greater detail. Here, you can enjoy time exploring the old monastic village that was once bustling 1,500 years ago. This is a beautifully tranquil place & offers a wonderful opportunity to explore more of the surrounding landscape while also taking the time to explore the historical remains that abound in this region.

There are a number of marked hiking trails of varying lengths and difficulties within the valley. Enjoy a challenging hike to the viewing point overlooking the beautiful lakes in the valley, or a gentle stroll along the lakeshore to soak up the flora and fauna in the valley.

Day 4: Travel to Galway - Explore

Downtown Galway
Downtown Galway

After breakfast, pack your bags and board the train from Dublin to the colorful west-coast city of Galway, the Bohemian Capital of Ireland.

Take the opportunity to soak in Galway’s vibrant streets, sample its wide variety of food offerings, or take a tour exploring its unique historical places of interest.

Suggested activities include:

  • Walk High Street and stop into one of the many stores selling local crafts, cafes offering endless pots of tea, and pubs with cozy snugs and the perfect pour of Guinness.
  • If you're here on a weekend, meander the farmers market and try local foods.
  • Stroll the Salt Hill Promenade. Whether rain or shine, this walk out to Galway Bay is relaxing and offers stunning views of the Burren—a natural landscape of limestone—off in the distance.
  • Catch a traditional music session in a pub. Taaffes Bar is known for nightly music and a lot of craic, although you may find more locals in the Crane Bar and Tigh Coili.

Day 5: Goodbye, Ireland

Ireland
Ireland

Enjoy your final morning in buzzy Galway City. Share a pot of tea in a cozy cafe and stroll down the vibrant streets one last time.

If flying out of Shannon Airport, you'll find it conveniently located just an hour away from Galway. Otherwise, Dublin Airport is just a couple hours away.