Explore Ireland's most picturesque locations on foot with this rugged 15-day itinerary. Begin your adventure in Dublin, a city steeped in history, before moving on to Killarney for a cruise through its lakes and a hike along the ancient "butter road" to Kenmare. Head to Sneem to learn about the area's rich history and explore its natural beauty. Enjoy a walk around Slea Head, trek along the wild Cliffs of Moher, and end your journey with a night at the medieval Kinnity Castle.


  • Embark on a guided walking tour through Dublin and visit the Guinness Factory
  • Cruise the Lakes of Killarney and the Meeting of the Waters 
  • Trek through Kerry Way, admiring the Ring and Dingle Peninsulas
  • Marvel at the Cliffs of Moher on a scenic 10-mile (16 km) hike

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Dublin, Explore Dublin
Day 2 Transfer to Killarney Killarney National Park
Day 3 Hike from Lord Brandon's Cottage to Kenmare Kenmare
Day 4 Hike the Kenmare Bay Trail Sneem
Day 5 Hike the Beentee Loop Cahersiveen
Day 6 Hike from Kells Post Office to Glenbeigh Glenbeigh
Day 7 Hike from Glenbeigh to Dingle Dingle Town
Day 8 Slea Head Day Hike  Dingle Town
Day 9 Hike from Tiduff to Cloghane  Cloghane
Day 10 Hike from Cloghane to Annascaul Annascaul
Day 11 Transfer to Doolin, Rest Day Doolin
Day 12 Cliffs of Moher Scenic Hike Doolin
Day 13 Day Trip to the Aran Islands Doolin
Day 14 Medieval Castle Stay, Slieve Bloom Mountain Walk Birr
Day 15 Transfer to Dublin, Depart  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Dublin, Explore

Dublin city center

Welcome to Dublin! Ireland's capital city is steeped in history, and it has an abundance of museums, memorials, cathedrals, and historical sites for you to discover. After you land at Dublin Airport, a private driver will meet you and drive you to your accommodation in the city center.

After checking in, set out and start exploring. Take a guided walking tour and get a feel for the city through the eyes of a local guide. Or, visit the Guinness Factory, located in the heart of the legendary St James's Gate Brewery. Afterward, have dinner at one of Dublin's critically acclaimed restaurants or head to one of the cozy pubs at Temple Bar.

Day 2: Transfer to Killarney

The forests and lakes of Killarney National Park.
The forests and lakes of Killarney National Park
Today you'll transfer to Killarney, a popular town located on the edge of Killarney National Park, which is famous for its three stunning lakes in the heart of Kerry. Upon your arrival at the first guesthouse, your host will provide you with a detailed information pack. Additionally, they will recommend some of the numerous local restaurants or pubs where you can enjoy a meal and perhaps even experience some live music. Get an early night and rest up for the start of your hiking adventure tomorrow.

Day 3: Hike from Lord Brandon's Cottage to Kenmare

Ross Castle at night
Sunset over Ross Castle

Take a short walk from Killarney to Ross Castle on Lough Leane, the town's largest lake. Board a small boat from here to enjoy a breathtaking ride through all three Lakes of Killarney and the Meeting of the Waters. The boat ride ends at Lord Brandon's Cottage, an old hunting lodge, where you can enjoy light refreshments before starting today's 9.5-mile (15 km) hike.

From the cottage, follow an old Mass path along the shores of the Upper Lake of Killarney to reach the beautiful Derrycunnihy Church and Galway's Bridge. Next, continue on the Old Kenmare Road, an ancient "butter road," through the hillside and moorland to cross from the center of the Ring of Kerry to the south side on the shores of Kenmare Bay. As you descend into the heritage town of Kenmare, take in the glorious views across the town to the Kenmare River and the Beara Peninsula to its south.

Day 4: Hike the Kenmare Bay Trail

Views along the Ring
Views along the Kenmare Bay Trail

Start today's 8-mile (13 km) journey to the award-winning village of Sneem by walking along the shores of Kenmare Bay, and enjoying the breathtaking views of the Beara Peninsula and the Caha Mountains. Your hike begins at the stunning bridge over the River Blackwater. Upon arrival in Sneem, you'll find a treasure trove of traditional Irish pubs, colorful buildings, and archaeological sites, including a sixth-century monastery and several standing stones. Spend some time exploring the area's natural beauty and learning about its rich history before settling in for the night. 

Day 5: Hike the Beentee Loop

Ballycarbery Castle near Cahersiveen

Today, you'll be transferred to the town of Cahersiveen, which is nicknamed "the town that climbs the mountain and looks down on the sea." Embark on a 6-mile (10 km) hike around Beentee Mountain, taking in stunning views of Valentia Harbour and the surrounding area. Starting from the town center, you'll follow an old Mass path up the lower slopes of Beentee. Then, you'll climb more steeply beside some forestry, ascending the ridge to the south of the mountain.

Continue northwest until you reach the summit of Beentee, which stands at 1,234 feet (376 m). From there, you'll enjoy magnificent views of Valentia Island, Cahersiveen, and Dingle Bay. As you descend northward, you'll have a breathtaking panorama of the town, the harbor, and the marina. Finally, you'll return to the town center by taking some small back roads before re-joining your starting point.

Plan your trip to Ireland
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Day 6: Hike from Kells Post Office to Glenbeigh

Views toward Rossbeigh Beach

Today's magnificent 10-mile (16 km) hike will take you along the northern shores of the Ring of Kerry peninsula, following an old stagecoach road on the Kerry Way. Starting from Kells, you'll hike east with wonderful views across Dingle Bay and the southern shores of the Dingle Peninsula. Eventually, you'll reach the village of Glenbeigh, where you'll be treated to glorious views across Rossbeigh Beach at the end of your hike. If you're lucky, you might even find a local to tell you the story of Ireland's "Land of Eternal Youth" before settling into your accommodations and putting your feet up for the evening.

Day 7: Hike from Glenbeigh to Dingle

The cheerful harbor of Dingle welcomes you for the night

After a hearty breakfast, a transfer to the starting point and strike out toward Dingle on an epic 14-mile (22 km) trek, passing through the 16th-century ruins of Minard's Castle and the small village of Lispole. As you follow the trail, the terrain will change to old country lanes through Lisdargan and Ballingarraun. You'll meet up with an old military road below the Connor Pass and continue on to Dingle.

In Dingle, you'll find a vibrant town full of bars and restaurants, including places like Foxy John's and Dick Mac's Pub & Brewery, the latter of which shares its drinking space with a leather goods shop. Traditional Irish music and the sounds of the Irish Gaelic language await as you explore popular spots like the Dingle Distillery and Louis Mulcahy Pottery. Try a traditional cheese shop while you're here, too. Spend the night in Dingle and soak up the lively atmosphere.

Day 8: Slea Head Day Hike 

Tackle the spectacularly scenic Slea Head on today's hike

This morning, a prearranged local taxi will take you just outside Dingle to the start of today's 12-mile (19 km) journey. You'll hike to the historical Kilcolman and continue on to Ventry Beach, where you'll embark on a beautiful and historic walk around Slea Head that culminates in Dunquin. Along the way, you'll have the opportunity to see the region's ancient "beehive" huts and enjoy a full view of the Blasket Islands. Once you've finished the walk, another pre-arranged taxi will take you back to Dingle, where you'll spend another night. 

Day 9: Hike from Tiduff to Cloghane

Views from the foot of Mount Brandon

Transfer out to the hamlet of Tiduff this morning, where you'll set out on a 7-mile (11 km) trek along an old military road that cuts through magnificent rural landscapes. Take in the tranquil countryside around you as you tread territory that's only accessible on foot. Your destination today is the picturesque village of Cloghane, which sits at the foot of Mount Brandon and overlooks the Owenmore Estuary

Day 10: Hike from Cloghane to Annascaul

Traverse the rural countryside of the Dingle Peninsula
Today's adventure is a beautiful 9-mile (14 km) hike along the Dingle Peninsula. Striking out from Cloghane, follow an old farmer's track, passing a deserted famine village and the shores of Annascaul Lake before descending into the charming village of Annascaul, where a free afternoon and a good night's sleep awaits. 

Day 11: Transfer to Doolin, Rest Day

Approaching Doolin
Take a break from hiking as you transfer to colorful Doolin
Switch gears and rest your tired legs today as you transfer by bus from Annascaul to Tralee bus station, then on to Doolin. Spend the rest of your day getting to know this enchanting village known for its traditional Irish music, picturesque scenery, and close proximity to the Cliffs of Moher, which you'll be visiting tomorrow. 

Day 12: Cliffs of Moher Scenic Hike

Cliffs of Moher
Hike along the edge of Ireland at the Cliffs of Moher

Experience one of the highlights of your trip today as you lace up your hiking boots again and set out from your guesthouse on a 10-mile (16 km) trek to reach the Cliffs of Moher, Ireland's most popular natural attraction. Forming a protective barrier from the Wild Atlantic Way to the rich and fertile land at the southern end of the Burren, these iconic cliffs run for 5 miles (8 km) along the spectacular coastline.

You'll follow the Burren Way route along the cliff tops to Hag's Head, where an unusual rock formation marks the cliffs' most southern point. Return by the same route with a completely different yet equally breathtaking panorama. After finishing the walk, a transfer will take you back to your accommodations in Doolin for the night. 

Day 13: Day Trip to the Aran Islands

Meet some of the locals on a bike ride around the Aran Islands

Today you jump from mainland Ireland to the windswept and wild Aran Islands. Spend the day discovering the largest of the three islands, known as Inis Mor or "Big Island." After a scenic ferry trip, see the island at your own pace, opting to travel by foot, bicycle, or a traditional horse-drawn jaunting cart. Experience the island's magnificent landscape of rocky fields, wild ocean views, and its many ancient monuments of Christian, pre-Christian, and Celtic mythological heritage. After a busy day of exploring, you'll catch a boat back to Doolin, where you'll spend another night. 

Day 14: Medieval Castle Stay, Slieve Bloom Mountain Walk

Brave Ireland's most haunted castle on today's tour 

Celebrate the end of your Irish adventure with a day of castle-hopping through its hidden heartlands. This guided tour immerses you in beautiful landscapes, tranquil waters, and stunning boglands off the beaten track. Transfer two hours inland to Birr and get settled into your atmospheric accommodations at Kinnity Castle, which was once home to the powerful O'Carrolls of Ely. Then it's time for a hike along the gorgeous Slieve Bloom Way, where you can pass through the magnificent ruins of Glinsk Castle.

Continue to Kinnity's sister castle, Leap Castle considered the most haunted place in Ireland, and hear stories of its resident ghosts and a dark history of housing the O'Carrolls' dungeons. Return to Kinnity Castle for lunch, freshen up, and hit the road to discover the tragic Clonmony Castle, where young cousins of Queen Elizabeth I tragically died in captivity. After a fascinating day full of history and legend, it's time to return to Kinnity Castle to enjoy your last night in Ireland at your leisure.

Day 15: Transfer to Dublin, Depart

Dublin Bridge
 Bridge over Ireland's River Liffey
Today your epic Irish hiking adventure draws to a close. After a leisurely breakfast at the castle, transfer back to Dublin and depart—whether that's home or onward to your next adventure. Safe travels!

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Map of Ultimate Southwest Ireland Hiking Adventure - 15 Days
Map of Ultimate Southwest Ireland Hiking Adventure - 15 Days