Knock to the Hills of Donegal

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8 Day/7 Night Self-Guided Bike Tour

Difficulty Rating:  4/5  Daily Distance:  60 – 65 km  Terrain:   Hilly

Cycling Holiday at Sliabh Liag, Donegal, IrelandTour Overview

Few places in Europe can compare with the beauty of the North West of Ireland. Towering cliffs, heather covered mountains and wild remote boglands combine to create a wonderful natural landscape. Definitely one of the most outstanding regions for Ireland bike holidays!

Here you can lose yourself in the mists of time as you cycle along deserted roads, explore megalithic, Celtic and early Christian historic sites, and experience the area’s legendary hospitality. Here also you will hear the unique traditional music, which, just like the region itself, is largely undiscovered.  In this beautiful region you will witness first-hand what greatly inspired poets like W. B. Yeats.

This biking holiday includes approximately 50 – 65 km of cycling each day, on paved minor roads. Much of the terrain is hilly, so it is best suited to moderately experienced cyclists.

Cycle tour map for KHD, from Ireland by bike Highlights of This Bike Tour

  • Cycling along the Donegal coast, including the Sliabh Liag (Slieve League) Cliffs
  • Cycling over Ireland’s remote boglands
  • Glencar Lake, Waterfall and Valley
  • Historic towns – Donegal, Belleek, Ardara and Ramelton
  • Ancient Irish history,  including Carrowmore and Glencolmcille
  • Glenveagh National Park
  • Friendly local pubs
  • Traditional Irish Music

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8 Day/7 Night Self-guided Bike Tour

Difficulty Rating:  4/5  Daily Distance:  60 – 65 km Terrain:  Hilly

Tour Itinerary

Bike Holidays Ireland All ready

Day 1: Arrive at Ireland West Airport (Knock)
Your Ireland bike holidays begin with your arrival at Ireland West Airport.  Transfer to your accommodation in nearby Charlestown. We will provide you with your bike, along with the maps and information for your cycling tour. Go for a cycle, or relax in this pleasant village. (If you prefer you can cycle the 9 km from the Airport to Charlestown).  Overnight in Charlestown.

 

 

Bike Holidays Ireland, Carrowmore, IrelandDay 2: Charlestown to Sligo.  59 km
Today your bike tour takes you north, through the farmlands and villages of County Sligo. Visit the Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetry, Europe’s second largest stone age cemetry. The site contains up to 60 passage tombs, dolmens and stone circles. Continue to bustling Sligo Town, situated beneath Benbulben. Overnight in Sligo – staying in the Town Centre.

 

 

Cycling Holiday in North West Ireland, Belleek, Fermanagh.Day 3: Sligo to Ballyshannon.  52 -64 km
Cycle through beautiful Glencar valley, immortalized by poet W. B. Yeats in his poem “The Stolen Child”.  Stop at Glencar Waterfall. Continue your bike tour through more quiet farmland, passing through small villages. Cross into Northern Ireland. Just over the border is the pretty village of Belleek –  home to the famous “Belleek Pottery”.   Cycle along Assaroe Lake to Ballyshannon, where you will spend the night.

 

 

Bike Holidays Ireland, Killybegs

Day 4: Ballyshannon to Killybegs.  65 km
Your cycling tour today takes you to historic Donegal Town, where you can explore Donegal Castle. It was from here that the O’ Donnell Clan once ruled over most of the Northern part of Ireland. From Donegal Town cycle west along the Atlantic Coast. Follow peaceful roads past beaches, inlets and headlands to the fishing port of Killybegs. Overnight in Killybegs.

 

 

cycling near Glencolmcille, Donegal, IrelandDay 5: Killybegs to Glencolmcille.  37 – 54 km
Cycle along one of the most stunning stretches of coastline in the world.  Pass pristine beaches and rocky headlands.  Visit the majestic Sliabh Liag (Slieve League) cliffs.  Here you can also take a boat trip to view the magnificent cliffs from below. Continue to the historic valley of Glencolmcille, where you can explore the numerous Stone Age and early Christian monuments. Overnight in Glencolmcille.

 

 

cycling down Granny Valley, in Donegal, IrelandDay 6: Glencolmcille to Glenties.  40 – 57 km
Cycle through one of Ireland’s most remote regions. Pass wild and abundant boglands, delightful coastal inlets, unspoiled fishing hamlets and spectacular valleys.  Visit the heritage town of Ardara — in bygone days a centre of the local tweed industry. Continue to your overnight stop in the pretty village of Glenties.

 

 

 

Perfect cycling along Glendowan Valley, Donegal, IrelandDay 7: Glenties to Ramelton.  63 km
Leave Glenties and cycle through quiet forests and bogland to the tiny village of Doochary. Climb along a beautiful, quiet, unspoiled valley to the southern edge of Glenveagh National Park.  From the park continue to the historic town of Ramelton, once a busy trans-Atlantic trading port.  Overnight in Ramelton.

 

 

 

Ardeen House, Ramelton, Donegal, Ireland, Bike Tour accommodationDay 8: Return to Ireland West Airport
It’s time to say goodbye!  We will transfer you the short distance to Letterkenny for the bus back to Ireland West Airport, and your flight back home. Alternatively, if you wish to spend more time in Ireland, we will help you plan your transport connections.

 

 

 

 

8 Day/7 Night Self-guided Bike Tour

Difficulty Rating:  4/5  Daily Distance:  60 – 65 km Terrain:  Hilly

Tour Starting in Sligo

Unless you are flying to Ireland West Airport at Knock, we recommend that you start this bike holiday in Sligo. This gives you a chance to take in many of the sights around Lough Gill and still visit the Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetry

Itinerary Days 1 and 2

Traditional Music Session, Bike Holidays IrelandDay 1: Arrive in Sligo
On arriving in Sligo for your bike holidays we will meet you from the train or bus.  If you arrive early in the day it will give you a chance to explore this town – forever associated with the poet W. B. Yeats.  If you like, we can recommend a short cycle route that will allow you to familiarize yourself with your surroundings and bicycle. Sligo is a centre of traditional music.  Many of the legendary traditional musicians come from the Sligo area.  Several pubs in the town host traditional music sessions.

 

Bike Holidays Ireland, Creevlea AbbeyDay 2:  Around Lough Gill.  47 – 63 km
The area around Sligo is rich in historic sites from every era.  Today as you cycle around tranquil Lough Gill you can travel through every era, since the stone age, on your way.  Visit the Carrowmore Megalithic Site (one of the world’s oldest).  See Creevlea Abbey and Parke’s Castle.  Be inspired, just as poet W. B. Yeats was, by the land you pass through. Return to Sligo for the night.

 

 

After days 1 and 2 you then follow the same itinerary as the tours starting at Knock.

8 Day/7 Night Self-Guided Bike Tour

Difficulty Rating:  4/5  Daily Distance:  60 – 65 km Terrain:  Hilly

Prices 2017

      Off Peak              Peak        Single Supplement  Electric Bike  
   8 Day/7 Night€840€890€160€95

Self-Guided bike tour price includes:

•  Bed and breakfast accommodation in carefully selected guest houses and B&B’s
•  Quality, 24 speed, hybrid bicycle hire
•  Welcome meeting on arrival
•  Daily luggage transfers
•  Full support
•  Comprehensive guide booklet
•  All maps and guide notes
•  Garmin Edge 200 GPS unit (one per group)

Not included in price:

•  Travel to and from start/finish of tour
•  Meals other than breakfast

Extra Days

If you wish to avail of an extra day’s accommodation and bicycle hire at any location during your tour, this can be arranged (at time of booking) at a cost of €80 per night/per person sharing. Single supplement – €15

Short Bike Tours 

If you cannot take the time to spend a full week on this bike tour, we have the following range of shorter versions:

7 Day/6 Night Bike Tour

Day 1:  Arrive Sligo
Day 2: Sligo to Ballyshannon
Day 3: Ballyshonnon to Killybegs
Day 4: Killybegs to Glencolmcille
Day 5: Glencolmcille to Glenties
Day 6: Glenties to Ramelton
Day 7: Depart
Price:  Off Peak – €760,    Peak – €810,     Single Supplement – €110,     E-Bike – €80

6 Day/5 Night Bike Tour

Day 1: Arrive Ballyshannon
Day 2: Ballyshannon to Killybegs
Day 3: Killybegs to Glencolmcille
Day 4: Glencolmcille to Glenties
Day 5: Glenties to Ramelton
Day 6: Depart
Price:  Off Peak – € 690,   Peak – €740,     Single Supplement – €90,     E-Bike – €65

Bikes and Equipment

It may sound obvious, but in order to enjoy a bike tour, you will need a good bicycle!  We give you a choice of a high quality hybrid or electric bike.

Hybrid Bikes

Ireland by bike Kellys Axis

Kellys Axis

The bicycle we use on our tours is the Kellys Axis (men’s frame) and Kellys Omega (women’s frame), or an equivalent model. These high quality 24 speed hybrid models combine the best features of road and mountain bikes, making them the perfect choice for touring the type of terrain in North West Ireland.

 

Electric Bikes

Electric bike tours Ireland. Kalkhoff agattu impulse

Kalkhoff agattu

We use the high quality Kalkhoff Agattu Impulse.  This bike combines an excellent battery life lasting up to 180 km with the comfort and versatility of an all-terrain bike. Perfect for bike touring in the hilly terrain of North West Ireland.

 

Equipment

As well as the bicycle, the following are also provided:Bike touring equipment

  • Helmet
  • Front carrier bag with map holder
  • Mudguards
  • Rear luggage carrier
  • Lock
  • Puncture repair kit
  • Pump
  • Spare inner tube

We do not normally provide rear pannier bags as these tend to slow the bicycles down. Our daily luggage transfers should mean that the front carrier bag easily holds day to day needs. However, if you require rear panniers, we can provide them at no extra cost.

If you would like to use your own pedals and saddle we will be more than happy to fit these to our bikes. We are also quite happy for you to use your own helmet if you would prefer.

Booking Online

To book this self-guided cycling holiday online, please go to our booking page.  Once you have filled out the booking form you will then be asked to pay a deposit of €100 per person using PayPal.  If you would like to pay using an alternative method, please contact us and we will gladly make alternative arrangements. Once you have paid the deposit, your booking is secure.  We will respond to your booking within 2 working days.

Terms and Conditions.