Explore the hidden gems of both Donegal and Mayo during this spectacular self-guided motorcycle five day tour. Donegal was voted ‘Coolest Place on earth 2017’ by the National Geotraveller, and Mayo’s town of Westport where you will be residing for two evenings has been voted ‘Tidy Town of Ireland’ numerous times. Kicking off your Celtic Rider experience is our award-winning Safety Orientation Course, followed by a ride out with one of our team for the first half of your first day. From here, discover fijords, woolen mills, national park and an abundance of mountain passes.
Day 1 – Celtic Rider Rental Station to Donegal (Two nights in Donegal) (140 Miles/ 223 Km)
Transfer to Celtic Rider, attend and enjoy safety orientation course.
Head North west along the N3, I recommend stopping at Lakeside Manor Hotel in Virginia for lunch, a nice hotel beside beautiful Lough Ramor , 50 miles from Celtic Rider, plenty of parking space at this quaint hotel.
This ride briefly takes you through Northern Ireland, along upper and lower Lough Erne. There are no customs checks in Ireland anymore, the only difference you will notice are the speed signs are in miles, not km.
Entering Donegal town, check out Donegal Castle and Magee’s tweed shop, conveniently located 100 yards from each other in the town centre.
Check into Donegal accommodation for 2 nights.
Good restaurants are ‘The Harbour’ and ‘The Olde Castle’
Call into Reels Pub, traditional music every evening, real turf fire
Day 2 – Second day in Donegal. Donegal to Donegal (141 Miles/ 226 Km)
Follow the Garmin route up through Barnesmore gap, a smugglers haven in time gone by. Continue the ride to the stunning Glenveagh
National Park and Castle in North West Donegal, with the majestic Derryveagh Mountains all around you.
The Castle is set in a beautiful garden, nice to relax in for a while, have some refreshments and enjoy the short guided tour of the castle itself.
Departing Glenveagh note Mount Errigal, Ireland’s most iconic mountain, with its quartzite top.
Continue riding along the route through wild and remote Donegal to Ardara, than ride the Glengash mountain pass.
Onwards to Carrick, than Teelin Village, follow the route to ‘The Rusty’, a small old pub and just 100 metres after the pub you turn right to the start of the ascent to the highest sea cliffs in Europe, Slieve League Cliffs, at 2000 ft high.
The ride up is as memorable as the amazing view from the upper parking area, accessed by opening a farm gate on the way up. Often there are trawlers fishing, they look like tiny dots on the Atlantic Ocean from the summit of the cliffs.
Return to Donegal accommodation via Killybegs, Ireland’s deep sea fishing port, very photographic coastal town.
Day 3 – Donegal to Westport (Two nights in Westport) (156 Miles/ 250 Km)
Departing Donegal head south , Drumcliff is where Ireland’s beloved poet W.B.Yeats is laid to rest. Benbulbin table top mountain dominates the skyline
Must visit is the ‘Ceide Fields’ Visitor centre, the oldest and largest stone walled village in the world, dating back 5200BC
Ride south through Ireland’s most remote area, from Bangor ride Ballycroy National Park, please stop at the Ballycroy visitor centre, Europe’s largest expanse of blanket bog, local people working there will happily tell you the history of this region
View the Nephin Beg Mountains and look out for local people cutting turf
The ride to Mallarany is spectacular as it winds along the sea
There is a nice Abbey, Burrishoole Abbey, between Mallaranny and Newport, optional but worth visiting
Check into Westport accommodation for 2 nights
Day 4 – Second day in Westport (Westport to Westport) (130 Miles/ 206 Km)
Leaving Westport for Maam Cross we are now heading for the spiritually haunting experience of Connemara national park, a magical ride
From Maam cross ride to Roundstone coastal village than continue to Clifden
From Clifden town take the aptly named ‘Sky Road’ with outstanding sea views are you ride higher and higher to the viewing area
Continue to Kylemore Abbey for hot scones and freshly brewed tea This is a magnificent Benedictine Abbey in a stunningly beautiful wooded valley
Ride to Leenane village look at Irelands deepest Fjord, than ride the incredible and narrow Doo Lough mountain pass, the Gem of Mayo, with towering mountains on either side of you
Doo Lough Pass is steeped in history, some quite sad as many Irish people died of starvation along this pass during the great hunger, the famine years of the late 1840s.
There is a stone cross commemorating those who perished and a famine walk every year along this stunningly beautiful area. The words on the cross are very poignant and it is worthwhile to stop here for a short while.
Ride back now Westport via Louisburgh and admire Irelands holy mountain ‘Croagh Patrick’ en route back to Westport
Day 5 – Westport to Celtic Rider Rental Station (160 Miles/ 256 Km)
Travel back to Celtic Rider in Dublin Castlebar, Roscommon.
Again, enjoy the agricultural midlands of Ireland as you ride back to Celtic Rider.
Continue to Celtic Rider Rental station.
We will assist with unpacking the bike, check over of motorcycle and paperwork before arranging drop off to your Dublin hotel or Dublin Airport.
Hire of premium guaranteed waterproof KLIM riding gear is €20 per day.
The Celtic Rider Package
Rental of motorcycle , which includes, top box, side cases and inner bags
Accommodation in Irish owned B&B guesthouses of a very high standard, personally hand selected by Paul Rawlins, founder and owner of Celtic Rider
Award winning 2 hour long orientation course specifically designed for riders from countries that ride on the opposite side of the road to Ireland which is guaranteed to enhance your overall riding experience, here in Ireland
Third Party insurance, with an excess of €1,500 which is the maximum charged for accidental damage or theft
Unlimited mileage, full tank of fuel on departure, to be returned with full tank of fuel.
The latest Garmin Zumo 590, with our award winning routes pre-programmed for each days ride, map and comprehensive advice, prior to your departure
Helmet – Approved European Standard plus Richa Rainsuit
Breakdown cover, (excludes punctures as all bikes are supplied with repair kits)
Celtic Rider merchandise, Including t-shirt, baseball cap, neck bandana, warm fleece hoody and badges
Free secure storage of luggage cases at our premises
Breakfast every morning at your lodgings
Not included are fuel, food, drinks, ferries, parking, entrance to tourist sites, fines, tickets or any other personal costs you may incur during your trip
Some of Our Small Print
Riders must have a full license for riding the category of motorcycles that we rent and the rider must be 25 years of age or older.A pre-authorisation for damage excess of €1500 will be reserved on your credit card on collection of the motorcycle. For motorcycles going abroad the damage deposit is €2500. This is the maximum cost charged in the event of accidental damage or theft. Your signature on the rental agreement page shall constitute authority for us to debit the final total charges against your account and your specific card-issuing organization. Celtic Rider office staff must be notified immediately of any accidents.