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    Hiking & Island Hopping
    Ireland’s West Coast

    Next Trip(s): 31st Jul | 21st Aug Duration: 7 Days / 6 Nights

    From €1,870 View Prices & Departures

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    Travel Planning and Advice

    Trip created by Eimear Quinn
    View Eimear's Profile

    Region: West – Connemara, Burren & Aran Islands
    Trip Type: Hiking
    Comfort: Classic
    Max Group Size: 8
    Confirmed: When 2 Traveller(s) Book
    Deposit From €467.50 €467.50

    Difficulty:

    All you need to know about your trip, this essential document is a must for all adventures.

    Download Itinerary

    Join us on this exciting new Island Hopping adventure in Connemara and Mayo across Ireland’s rugged west coast. From coast to island, on foot and by boat, explore this ever-popular region of the Wild Atlantic Way on a unique hiking adventure!

    Travel through some of Ireland’s most beloved landscapes in a unique fashion on this trip. Leave the crowds behind to explore the little-visited islands, hills and headlands of Ireland’s west coast.

    Imagine yourself standing at the edge of the epic Cliffs of Moher before climbing aboard a small boat to hop over to the most remote island of the Aran Islands where Irish tradition reigns strong. Here, immerse yourself in local Irish traditions such as music, the Irish language and crafting. Discover vast blankets of wildflowers and wildlife while hiking the wild Burren National Park, visit infamous pirate queen Grace O’Malley’s ancient island stronghold on Clare Island, and see the crumbling Cromwellian barracks while hiking the pristine windswept landscapes of Inisbofin Island.

    On this fully-guided small group tour of Ireland’s islands and west coast, learn about the rich cultural, mythological, archeological and geological history of these rocky wild landscapes while staying in comfortable, authentic accommodation handpicked by our expert trip designers. Along the way, meet some of the west coast’s most colourful characters and maybe even pick a few Gaelic words.

    Trip Highlights

    • Island hop to the Gaelic-speaking Aran Islands & boat to Inisbofin Island's fort
    • Explore the island stronghold of Ireland's infamous Pirate Queen
    • Iconic sites visits - the Cliffs of Moher, Croagh Patrick - Ireland's Holy Mountain & Burren National Park

    Day by Day Itinerary

    Day 1 – The Burren National Park, Ireland’s Middle Earth

    Your island hopping adventure kicks off in Galway, the City of Tribes. Leaving the vibrant city behind, we head south on the Wild Atlantic Way to the craggy, alien landscapes of the Burren National Park, a place said to be J.R.R. Tolkien’s inspiration for Middle Earth. Keep an eye out for natural bouquets of wildflowers as we cross this strange stony landscape on our first hike of the trip. (L,D)

    Distance: 5.5km/ 3.5 miles, 2.5 hrs.*

    Day 2 – The Aran Islands & the Cliffs of Moher

    For our first island hopping excursion, we’ll set sail to the least-visited of the Aran Islands. With over 7,000 years of history, Inish Meain (or Inishman), is a true bastion of Irish tradition and Irish language. Your hike follows quiet island roads and trails around Inis Meain island. In the evening after most tourists are gone, enjoy a breathtaking visit to the Cliffs of Moher. (B,L)

    Distance: 13km/ 8 miles, 4.5 hrs.*

    Day 3 – Explore the Connemara Gaeltacht on Garumna Island 

    In the heart of the Connemara Gaeltacht (Irish-speaking region), we continue with our island-hopping adventure on a tiny peninsula, hiking to the little-visited Garumna Island. Here the trail meanders through a series of local lanes and paths as you head towards the Trawbaun graveyard with its neatly-preserved medieval church. Along the shore of Greatman’s Bay, you’ll pass coral beaches and the rocky foreshore but it is the views of Connemara’s Mamturk and Twelve Bens mountain ranges that really sets the scene. (B,L)

    Distance: 8km/ 5 miles, 4 hrs.*

    Day 4 – Inisbofin Island

    Another day, another island! Today we head to iconic Inisbofin Island, where you can take in some of the most stunning Atlantic Coast scenery. A coastal hike across the island offers aw-dropping views of the island’s blowholes and sea arch and sea stacks. Look out for resident seals and seabirds as well as an Iron Age promontory fort. Kick back at the day’s end with a pint of Guinness in hand. (B,L)

    Distance: 16km/ 10 miles, 6 hrs.*

    Day 5 – On the Shores of Killary Fjord

    Certainly one of Ireland’s most spectacular coastal hikes, this gentle walk along Killary Fjord takes you past rocky outcroppings of sheep-shorn grass with distant ocean views spreading out before us. Overlooking a necklace of white sand beaches along the shoreline, sharp eyes may spot pods of dolphins or diving seabirds on the surface of the island-dotted seascape. Delve into Irish history at a famine-era abandoned village while your guide brings to life the rich ancient histories of this little-changing landscape. (B,L)

    Distance: 11 km/ 7 miles, 4 hrs.*

    Day 6 – Clare Island, A Pirate's Hideaway

    Welcome to Clare Island, the final island on our tour. In the 16th century, the wild north Atlantic coast of Ireland was ruled by Grace O’Malley, a formidable Gaelic pirate queen, who ruled the seas of Northern Europe. The little-visited Clare Island guards the entrance to Clew Bay, the Pirate Queen’s former stronghold. Explore the Pirate Queen’s castle, the jagged cliffs, pristine beaches and wondrous ruins of this magical place. Our hike follows the line of the cliffs on the northern coast, from the dramatically situated lighthouse to the island’s highest point before descending back to the little harbour village to relax at the sandy beach. (B,L,D)

    Distance: 11km/ 7 miles, 4-5 hrs.*

    Day 7 – Croagh Patrick, Ireland's Holy Mountain

    The imposing silhouette of the pilgrimage site, Croagh Patrick Mountain, dominates the surrounding countryside. On our way past, we’ll take a short hike in the shadow of the sacred mountain, following sheep tracks through heathery bogland along the final miles of the traditional pilgrimage route to the foot of Croagh Patrick. We’ll stop at a beautiful Augustinian friary before finishing up in lively Westport town. (B)

    Distance: 4km/ 2.5 miles, 1.5 hrs.*

    *This itinerary is subject to changes and improvements. All hiking times are approximate. 

    X
    Hiking
    Ireland’s West Coast

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    What's Included

    Accommodation Read More

    Kick off your hiking boots and relax by the evening fire on chilly nights or on the outdoor terraces on mild evenings after an exciting day of island hopping along the Wild Atlantic Way in Connemara, Mayo, the Burren, and the Aran Islands. The accommodations chosen for this trip are tucked into the heart of some of Ireland’s most beautiful wilderness and are recognised for their uniqueness and conviviality – all part your Wilderness Ireland adventure!

    This trip features accommodations chosen for their excellent location, service and comfort. All accommodations provide breakfast. Each day, lunch is either a Wilderness Picnic or taken at a local cafe/pub. Water and snacks are provided throughout the day. Evening meals are included on the first and last nights only. For the other evenings your Wilderness Guide can provide expert recommendations. We do not charge single person supplements to people booking on their own. However, you will be expected to share a room with another person of the same sex. If you specifically require a single room you will have to pay the single supplement charge of €250 but this is subject to availability.

    Meals Read More

    Most meals are included in the price of this trip. Breakfast is provided each morning, as well as lunch and snacks throughout the trip. Dinner is provided the first and last night. Other evenings, can dine where you choose – your guide can help you by making recommendations and reservations. Local pubs and restaurants offer a wide choice of local dishes.

    On this trip, we generally eat dinner as a group however if you would like to make alternative arrangements you are free to do so. Your guide will have an evening off during this trip where they do not eat with the group. They will recommend options for dinner that evening and will help you make any necessary reservations.

    Inclusions Read More
    • 6 nights accommodation in unique and cosy guest houses and hotels
    • Most meals during the trip (Meals included indicated as B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
    • The services of an experienced and knowledgeable hiking guide/driver throughout
    • Pickup and transport throughout the trip, starting and finishing in Galway
    • 6 days of hiking among the wild landscapes and islands of Ireland’s west coast
    • All boat/ferry transfers to/from the Aran Islands
    • Entrance and admission fees as stated in the itinerary
    Travel Read More

    You will be met by your Wilderness Ireland Guide at Galway Train Station at 12.00pm on Day 1 of your trip. You will be dropped off at Westport Train Station by 1.00pm on the last day of your trip. For full details on how to get to Galway, please see the travel section of our website here.

    Trip Dates & Prices

    Trip Dates for 2021 Availability Status Price Book
    31st Jul - 6th Aug 2021 4 place(s) left CONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    21st Aug - 27th Aug 2021 6 place(s) left CONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    11th Sep - 17th Sep 2021 6 place(s) left CONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    9th Oct - 15th Oct 2021 6 place(s) left CONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    Trip Dates for 2022 Availability Status Price Book
    26th Mar - 1st Apr 2022 8 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    16th Apr - 22nd Apr 2022 8 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    7th May - 13th May 2022 8 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    11th Jun - 17th Jun 2022 8 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    9th Jul - 15th Jul 2022 6 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    30th Jul - 5th Aug 2022 8 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    20th Aug - 26th Aug 2022 6 place(s) left CONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    17th Sep - 23rd Sep 2022 8 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now
    8th Oct - 14th Oct 2022 8 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED €1,870 Book Now

    Make This Trip Private

    Sometimes it's nice to get family and friends together and travel privately for some quality time. This means you benefit from all the features of the group departure, including hand-picked accommodation and expert local guides and we'll take care of it all. Then you can make your choice of departures dates and we'll get back to you to finalise the details.

    Speak to an Expert

    Eimear Quinn

    Our resident Northern gal, Eimear loves everything outdoors, from gardening to climbing and cycling. As a member of the Operations Team, Eimear is in charge of trip logistics throughout Ireland and knows everywhere from Connemara to Kerry to the Causeway Coast like the back of her hand.

    Ask Eimear a Question

    Meet Your Guide

    Difficulty Grades Explained

    Green Grades 1-3

    Our hiking trips range from very straightforward low-level hikes to trips that include more challenging itineraries which will take you to a new mountain top each day.

    Our green graded trips include shorter hikes, with few ascents, and are generally over smoother (but usually not paved) terrain. We include more cultural stops along the way and walk at a leisurely pace.

    Often our green graded trips include hikes in flatter coastal areas or in valleys, and will last around 2-4 hours each day. To help you decide if you are fit enough for this trip, ask yourself:

    Can you comfortably hike for 6 miles (10km), including some ascents, over generally good terrain?

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