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Grand Southwest Ireland Self-Guided Bicycle Tour (14 nights)

Tour code: SWISG14

Tour Overview

This comprehensive itinerary encompasses all five peninsulas of the South West and includes McGillicuddy’s Reeks and Gougane Barra. Mizen Head, Sheeps Head, the Beara Peninsula, the Iveragh Peninsula and the Dingle Peninsula are explored in turn. This is a wonderful (and fairly challenging) itinerary.

From the start point in Killarney, you begin your riding with a beautiful loop south of Killarney, taking in the famous Gap of Dunloe.  From Killarney you then head toward Gougane Barra on tiny country roads.  From Gougane Barra there are a couple of options in getting to Bantry.  You may want to take on the slightly more challenging Sheep’s Head Peninsula.  You then have two nights in the extremely pretty Bantry, with a loop ride via Mizen Head the most southernly point on the Irish mainland.

From Bantry we then head north along the coastline toward the quaint fishing port of Castletownbere, where there is another two night stay, with several loop options available, including around the Beara Peninsula, where you can take the cable car across to Dursey Island.  From Castletownbere you head toward Kenmare via the stunning, and quite challenging Healy Pass.  From Kenmare we then head west round the world famous Ring of Kerry, before arriving in Waterville for a two-night stay.  A potential loop ride from here takes you out to The Skelligs via a small boat.  From Waterville we ride away from the coastline toward Killorgin, and from there onto the lovely town of Dingle.  From Dingle you can ride a loop around Slea Head, which is simply stunning.  Your final ride takes you over the daunting Conor Pass, before heading back to Killarney via Tralee.

For information on the en route scenery and attractions see the Regional Details page.

Ten highlights

  • Visiting Killarney National Park
  • Gougane Barra Lake and Forest Park
  • The views from Mizen Head – Ireland’s most southerly point.
  • The quiet beauty of the Sheeps Head Peninsula
  • A visit to Bantry House
  • The wonderful ride over the Healy Pass
  • Traditional music sessions in Kenmare’s pubs
  • The breathtaking landscapes of the Dingle Peninsula
  • The Skellig Experience Centre
  • Gallarus Oratory


  • Allihies
  • Ballyferriter
  • Beara Coast
  • Beara Riding
  • Brandon
  • Dingle Coastline
  • Dunquin Harbour
  • Gallus Oratory
  • Kerry Road
  • Slea Head


  • To extend the itinerary an additional night in Killarney at the beginning or at the end of the riding is a good choice.

Outline Itinerary

Day Start Stay Core route Other options En Route
→ km ↑ m longer shorter
1 - Killarney - - - -  
2 Killarney Killarney 56 782 Gap of Dunloe, Ladies’ View, McGillicudy’s Reeks
3 Killarney Gougane Barra 56 766   Killarney National Park, Roughty River, Lough Allua, Gougane Barra Forest Park
4 Gougane Barra Bantry 65 749 Carriganass Castle, Bantry House, Sheeps Head Peninsula
5 Bantry Bantry 50 629 Mizen Head, Altar Wedge Tomb, Durrus
6 Bantry Castletownbere 51 531     Garinish Island, Glengarriff
7 Castletownbere Castletownbere 42 710   Dursey Island, Allihies Copper Mine Museum
8 Castletownbere Kenmare 55 695   Healey Pass, Dereen Gardens
9 Kenmare Waterville 62 748     Ring of Kerry, Staigue Fort, Derrynane House
10 Waterville Waterville 51 628   Portmagee, The Skellig Experience, Valentia Island
11 Waterville Killorglin 57 624     Ballaghisheen Pass, Glencar, Lough Caragh
12 Killorglin Dingle 56 495     Inch Strand, Minard Castle
13 Dingle Dingle 56 560   Slea Head, Dunbeg Fort, beehive dwellings
14 Dingle Killarney 68 515   Conor Pass, Desmond Castle, Tralee

Day-by-Day Summary

Tour Costs

Costs in Euros
Basic cost per person sharing 1495*
Single accommodation supplement (if applicable) 415
Optional Costs
Bicycle rental Hybrid 225
Road Bike 295
Pannier rental per pair 20
luggage transfers Total for one or two people 590
Each additional person 30

* Prices for solo travellers are on request

Click here for more details on what's included in the costs above.

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