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My Ireland

Looking for inspiration? Planning a trip? Or just want to scroll yourself happy? We'll show you an Ireland that's tailor-made for you.

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    See what Ireland has in store for you

    Rock Farm Slane, County Meath Rock Farm Slane, County Meath

    Cycling

    Steep ascents, winding lanes and off-road trails: Ireland is a cycling playground

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    For its size, the island of Ireland has some of the greatest geographical diversity of any destination in the world. For cyclists, this means a breadth of very different experiences never more than a few hours travel from each other. With spectacular cycling routes to suit any level – from casual sightseer or intrepid road racer to mountain biking enthusiast – just strap on your panniers, put on your helmet and let’s cycle.

    Take a guided tour along the Wild Atlantic Way with your baggage transferred each time you change location; self-tour Ireland’s Ancient East on a bike rental picked up from its towns and villages; pedal at your leisure along the stunning Causeway Coastal Route in Northern Ireland; or make the most of the island's city bike schemes to explore at your own pace.

    Cliff at Lyons, County Kildare Cliff at Lyons, County Kildare

    Cliff at Lyons, County Kildare

    The incredible network of roads and boreens (small roads) means you can go out with no planned route in mind and follow your nose.

    Rory Wyley, president of Cycling Ireland

    Greenways and Trails

    Across the island, you’ll find a number of Greenways, which are designed for cyclists – and it’s no coincidence that they also happen to cover some of the most memorable landscapes imaginable. Check out the Great Western Greenway, reaching from the town of Westport to Achill Island; or the Waterford Greenway, which runs between Dungarvan and Waterford city.

    If you’re looking for a route that brings diversity of landscapes, the Kingfisher Trail covers 300 miles, and consists of landscape dominated by mountains and lakes. The trail straddles counties Fermanagh, Leitrim, Cavan, Donegal and Monaghan, and cyclists will find plenty of punchy climbs for a tough test or gently winding lanes between villages for those in search of something more modest. As for tranquil scenery, the inky waters of Lough Erne will oblige, while the Cuilcagh Mountain is a dominant presence as you head north.

    Cycling around the island of Ireland

    L-R: Cycling Ballycastle, County Antrim; Waterford Greenway, County Waterford; Rostrevor, County Down; Bicycle in Dublin city

    Cycling: need to know

    If you don’t bring your own, there are plenty of bike hire shops around the island, and rental fees are reasonable. Most bike shops will let you rent your bike in one location and drop it off at another for a small fee.

    Rental price generally includes lock, pump, puncture repair kit, mudguards and carrier; insurance cover is given with all bicycles hired. Children's bikes are also available, but remember to book well in advance and ask about helmets, especially in high season.

    The Road Safety Authority in the Republic of Ireland and Road Safe NI gives advice on cycling safely and the rules of the road.

    In Northern Ireland, all bicycles are carried free of charge on Translink Goldline Express Coaches only and Translink trains (including the 'Enterprise' service). No bikes will be carried before 0930 hours Monday to Friday. In the Republic of Ireland, bicycles are not permitted on Irish Rail Commuter trains before 9.30am and between 4pm and 7pm, Monday to Friday. Bikes are allowed on public transport free of charge at off-peak times, however there is limited space on intercity trains and a nominal fee may be charged. In Dublin, buses and trains both allow fold-up bikes, free of charge.

    And don’t forget, Ireland’s weather is famously unpredictable, so pack gear for every eventuality.

    5 top tips

    1
    Always cycle with traffic on the left-hand side of the road.
    2
    Use arm signals when you are turning left or right.
    3
    City bike schemes are an easy way to travel around the cities, however, you will need to bring your own helmet.
    4
    A high-visibility jacket, helmet and good headlamp are recommended.
    5
    It's always sensible to have waterproof gear with you and extra layers to add on/remove as the temperature dictates. And some sunscreen, just in case!

    Ireland cycling adventures

    Attraction

    Great Western Greenway's

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    Newport

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    The Royal Canal Way

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    Dublin

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    Waterford Greenway

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    Ballyhoura Mountain Bike Trail Network

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    Limerick

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    The Old Rail Trail Greenway: Athlone to Mullingar

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    Westmeath

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    The Grand Canal Way

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    Dublin

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    Glens of Antrim Cycle Route

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    Antrim

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    Ballinastoe Mountain Bike Trail

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    Wicklow

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    Great Southern Trail

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    Limerick

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    The Wicklow Way

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    Wicklow

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