Causeway, Cliffs, Castles (10 Day Tour)

Prices: US$ 3999
EU€ 3699
Duration: 10 days

Trip Advisor 2014 Winner

Itinerary Information

Causeway, Cliffs and Castles Tour Details for 2018
Wed 18 July to Fri 27 Aug 2018
12 places available
Depart Dublin Airport 1pm

Return Dublin Airport 3pm

Duration 10 days
$3999
€3699

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Tour Map: Causeway, Cliffs and Castles

Map: Causeway, Cliffs and Castles

Tour Highlights

  • Waterfalls in the Glens of Antrim
  • Walking at the Giant's Causeway
  • Official areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty
  • A visit to Rathlin Island
  • Crossing the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge
  • Traditional music in the pubs
  • The Medieval town of Carlingford
  • Stone circles
  • Glenarriff Forest Park
  • Walking the Antrim Coastal Path
  • A visit to Rathlin Island
  • Slieve League - Europe's highest sea cliffs
  • Stunning coastal scenery of Donegal
  • Poor House Museum in Dunfanaghy
  • The beaches and dunes of Horn Head
  • 2 nights in Carlingford
  • 3 nights on the Antrim Coast
  • 2 nights in Dunfanaghy, Donegal
  • 2 nights in Donegal Town

Included In Tour

  • Dublin Airport pick-up and drop-off
  • 9 nights 3-4 star accommodation (en suite)
  • All land transportation
  • Return ferry to Rathlin Island
  • Entrance to Carrick a rede Rope Bridge
  • Entrance to Glenveagh National Park
  • 9 guided walks
  • Escort of full-time guide
  • Escort of local guides
  • 9 breakfasts
  • 9 packed lunches
  • 7 evening meals
  • 2 nights in Carlingford
  • 3 nights on the Antrim Coast
  • 2 nights in Dunfanaghy, Donegal
  • 2 nights in Donegal Town

 Carlingford IrelandDAY 1: MEET AT DUBLIN AIRPORT, WELCOME DINNER, SHORT WALK AT CARLINGFORD

Terrain: quiet lanes, forest track | Elev gain 400ft 2 miles (3.2 km)

You will be met with a warm welcome at an hotel adjacent to Dublin Airport. Then we travel north to the pretty fishing village of Carlingford in County Louth. There are lovely views across the lough to the Mountains of Mourne, and the village backdrop is the mighty mountain of Slieve Foye. We will take a walk along the lower slopes of Slieve Foye in order to be rewarded with stunning views back over Carlingford Lough. Carlingford is steeped in medieval history and there are many sites of interest to wander around, including an ancient castle and an abbey ruin.

Overnight: Carlingford, County Louth. Meals Included: Dinner.

Hiking in IrelandDAY 2: HIKE BLACK MOUNTAIN IN THE COOLEY HILLS, VISIT CARLINGFORD AT LEISURE

Terrain: lanes, mountain track, moorland | Elev Gain: 1800ft | Walking Distance 8 miles (12.9 km)

Our first full day walk will be at Ravensdale forest and the Cooley Hills. We will encounter an ancient stone circle and a dolmen (ancient burial site) along the way and learn about the legend of the Cattle Raid of Cooley. After climbing steadily over heathe-covered slopes and moorland on Black Mountain we will enjoy fine views of Newry, Rostrevor and the Mountains of Mourne in Northern Ireland.

Walk Options: stroll around Carlingford at your leisure: visit old castle ruins and ancient abbey.

Overnight: Carlingford, County Louth. Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.

Beautiful sea viewDAY 3: DRIVE NORTH TO COUNTY ANTRIM, HIKE THE GLENS OF ANTRIM, CROSS CARRICK A REDE ROPE BRIDGE

Terrain: woodland paths, waterfall trails | Elev gain: 300 feet | Half day walk 6 miles (9.7 km)

Today we will head further north and over the border into Northern Ireland. En route we will stop to walk at Glenarriff Forest Park with our resident expert guide. You will enjoy a hike through a wealth of woodland and waterfalls. We then make our way on to the open hillside to look back on the Glenarriff Valley leading out to sea. Afterwards we will make our way to the Causeway Coast, Co. Antrim. It is obvious to see why the Antrim Coast has been designated an official Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Later in the afternoon we will have time to cross the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge.

Walk Options: the full walk is 6 miles. Alternative option of just 2 miles available.

Overnight: Bushmills, County Antrim. Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch.

Giant's CausewayDAY 4: HIKE THE ANTRIM COAST AND THE GIANT’S CAUSEWAY

Terrain: cliffs, coast path, sandy beaches | Elev gain: 400 feet | Full day walk 9 miles (14.5 km)

Today we take a spectacular walk from Dunseverick Harbour to Portballintrae via the Giant’s Causeway. The Causeway is made up of 37,000 black basalt hexagonal columns. It is the result of a massive underground explosion, which took place some sixty million years ago. In 1693 the Royal Geographical Society publicised it as one of the great wonders of the natural world. Our walk begins at Dunseverick Harbour, then we walk west along the very well-maintained Coastal Path passing rocky coves, high cliffs, sandy beaches, and a ruined castle.

Walk Options: the full walk is 9 miles. Alternative option of just 5 miles available.

Overnight: Bushmills, County Antrim. Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch.

HarbourDAY 5: FERRY OUT TO RATHLIN ISLAND

Terrain: cliff paths, paved lanes | Elevation gain: 200 feet | Walking Distance 8 miles

Today we take the ferry out to Rathlin Island: the only inhabited offshore island in Northern Ireland. Rathlin is only 15 miles from the Scottish coast at the Mull of Kintyre. We take a trip out to the West Lighthouse: famed for its bird life and home to tens of thousands of seabirds, including kittiwakes, guillemots, puffins and razorbills. Later we will walk down to Rue Point for a fine walk beside lakes and down to see the seals at the southern shore. We return later to the mainland and our guest house to relax and enjoy an excellent meal, perhaps with some locally caught seafood.

Walk Options: the full walk is 8 miles long, but there is option of just pottering around the island at your own pace.

Overnight: Bushmills, County Antrim. Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch.

Glenveagh National Park, IrelandDAY 6: TRAVEL WEST TO COUNTY DONEGAL, HIKE AT GLENVEAGH NATIONAL PARK

Terrain: forest path, lakeside track | Elev 50 ft | Walking Distance 6 miles (9.7 km)

We’re off into the west today to County Donegal: we will be located in the village of Dunfanaghy, in the Gaelic-speaking region of the north west. We will be staying in the award-winning Mill Guest House and Restaurant. This area is famous for excellent traditional Irish music and we will hope to be able to enjoy some music in the pubs. On our way to Donegal we will stop at Glenveagh National Park for a walk which begins in the wild country in the mountains and finishes at the beautiful Lough Beagh and Glenveagh Castle gardens.

Alternative walk options: there is a shorter alternative of hiking just one or two miles.

Overnight: Dunfanaghy, County Donegal. Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.

Horn Head PeninsulaDAY 7: HIKE HORN HEAD PENINSULA

Terrain: forest path, beach, cliff path | Elev 500 ft. | Walking Distance 9 miles (14.5 km)

Setting out on foot from the hotel, our walk today will be at the Horn Head Peninsula. This is one of the northernmost peninsulas of County Donegal. Our walk will commence though pine woods bring us through large sand dunes interspersed with wild flowers such as wild mountain thyme and pyramidal orchids. We then come down to a spectacular beach before taking a coast / cliff track around by the sea. We finish near a great natural arch in the sea before turning back towards Dunfanaghy to visit the Poor House Museum.

Walk Options: shorter 4 mile walk to Tramore Beach and returning the same way to visit the village of Dunfanaghy and the Poor House Museum.

Overnight: Dunfanaghy, County Donegal. Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.

Mount ErrigalDAY 8: HIKE AT DUNLEWY LOUGH AND THE POISONED GLEN, TRAVEL TO DONEGAL TOWN

Terrain: grassy / stone track, boggy hills | Elev gain: 400ft. | Walking Distance 8 miles (12.9 km)

This morning we will head further south in County Donegal, and on our way we stop to walk near Dunlewy Lough and the Poisoned Glen. This is a magnificent walk through hills and forests in the shadows of mighty Mount Errigal, Donegal’s highest mountain.

Alternative walk options: if you dont’ wish to walk, there is an opportunity to visit the Dunlewy Centre: a community-based culture and arts development centre.

Overnight: Donegal town, County Donegal. Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.

Slieve League, IrelandDAY 9: HIKE SLIEVE LEAGUE: ONE OF THE GREATEST HIKES IN IRELAND!

Terrain: grassy / stone track, boggy hills | Elev gain: 2000ft | Walking Distance 8 miles (12.9 km)

We head for Europe’s highest sea cliffs at Slieve League (2000ft) today. In many people’s opinion Slieve League is Donegal’s piece de resistance. The cliffs are three times higher than the Cliffs of Moher, but less well known due to their remote location. On a fine day, the vista is incredible. An isolated gentle green road brings us out onto the most majestic views of the Atlantic Ocean. This walk is truly an unforgettable one! We will return to our guest house near Donegal Town for another fine meal.

Instead of the long hike at Slieve Leaugue you may prefer to visit Donegal Town and the castle. Approx 2 mile return walk from our accommodation.

Overnight: Donegal Town. Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.

Hiking Tours Northern IrelandDAY 10: RETURN TO DUBLIN FOR DROP OFF AT DUBLIN AIRPORT

We will drive back to Dublin via Enniskillen and the Fermanagh Lakelands. We should get back to Dublin Airport at around 3 pm.

Meals Included: Breakfast.

Note: The above scheduled itinerary is subject to change for varying reasons. Any changes made by Joyce’s Ireland and / or the tour leaders will be in the interest and safety of all participants.

Note also: Many clients come on a Joyce’s Ireland tour who wish to do very little hiking. Every day there are alternative options such as sight-seeing, relaxing, reading, painting, listening to Irish traditional music, and generally just soaking up the Irish atmosphere. You can opt out of the hiking on any day! All our accommodations are based in scenic locations, so you are very welcome to just remain “home” for the day.

Hiking Tours Northern Ireland

Hiking Tours Northern Ireland – Joyce’s Ireland Hiking Vacations in Antrim, Rathlin Island, and Donegal Giant’s Causeway, Ireland’s Cliffs and Irish Castles.

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