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Mizen Head to Malin Head (8 days) – 2015


TYPE: Road Cycling
LEVEL: Regular
DATES: 7 Aug 2015 – 16 Aug 2015
DURATION: 10 days / 9 nights (8 days cycling)

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Mizen Head to Malin Head – 8 days

  • Irish version of the ‘End to End’ offering excellent and varied cycling
  • Route takes you through the counties of Cork and Kerry and includes the Cliffs of Moher, The Burren and the dramatic Gap of Dunloe
  • Enjoy famous Irish hospitality and music
  • Hotel & B&B accommodation

Continuing our popular ‘End to End’ theme, this superb cycling holiday takes you just over 400 miles the length of Ireland from Mizen Head in the south to Malin Head in the North. Shorter and slightly easier than the French and UK ‘End to End’ holidays this tour offers some excellent cycling through the delightful Irish countryside.

The trip starts at Cork from where we transfer you to Mizen Head to begin the cycling. The route takes you along the coast of Bantry Bay and through the hills of Kerry. We continue around the mouth of the River Shannon, crossing the river to continue north past the Cliffs of Moher and across the limestone plateau known as ‘The Burren’. From here we turn inland to continue through lovely quiet countryside of remote lakes and rivers.

The route takes you briefly across the border into Northern Ireland, passing around Lough Melvin and the head of Lower Lough Erne, before crossing back into the Republic of Ireland to the attractive little town of Donegal. You then continue across the Blue Stack Mountains, on to the Inishowen Peninsula, and across open moorland to Malin Head, the most northerly point on Ireland. The following day we transport you to Londonderry or Belfast to return home.

Accommodation on this trip is in small hotels or guest houses.

This is beautiful ride through lovely countryside. A certificate is provided for those that complete the trip – just to prove you did it!!!

For those of you capable of cycling nearly 100 miles a day, try the 4 day version of this trip.

7 day, 10 day or 14 day Independent holidays.

If you would like to read other people’s comments on our holidays then check out the Customer Comments page.



Day 1 – Arrive in Cork. Either cycle or transport to accommodation near Mizen Head.

Day 2 – Mizen Head to Glengarriff – 52 miles
We start with a short ride to Mizen Head. From here we then turn north along the shore of Dunmanus Bay, pass through the attractive little town of Bantry, and continue around Bantry Bay to Glengarriff.

Day 3 – Glengarriff to Tralee – 55 miles
The route takes you around the Killarney National Park, through the Gap of Dunloe and across the Slieve Mish Mountains.

Day 4 – Tralee to Lahinch – 62 miles
We continue north around the Mouth of the Shannon, then turn inland alongside the river to Tarbert where we take the ferry across the Shannon River, and continue north along the coast to Lahinch on the shore at Liscannor Bay.

Day 5 – Lahinch to Athenry – 60 miles
We continue north past the magnificent Cliffs of Moher and across the wild countryside of The Burren. We then turn inland to the small town of Athenry.

Day 6 – Athenry to Carrick-on-Shannon – 70 miles
Staying inland we pass through rolling countryside, dotted with lakes and rivers as we head to the small town of Carrick-on-Shannon.

Day 7 – Carrick-on-Shannon to Belleek – 45 miles
We pass along the shore of Loch Allen, then cross into Northern Ireland as we go around the head of Lower Loch Erne, to finish the day at the attractive little border town of Belleek.

Day 8 – Belleek to Buncrana – 55 miles
The penultimate day takes you back into the Republic, passing through Donegal, the Barnesmore Gap and continuing north through pleasant rolling countryside, before taking the ferry across Lough Swilly.

Day 9 – Buncrana to Malin Head – 42 miles
The last day is a fairly easy one as you head across the open moorland of the Inishowen Peninsula to finally reach the rocky, deserted cliffs at Malin Head.

Day 10 – Transport to Londonderry Airport or Belfast International Airport.

Tour Price includes

Hotel/B&B accommodation
Vehicle support
Services of leader/mechanic
Local transfers
Route information
Transport from Cork to Mizen Head if required
Transport from Malin Head to Londonderry or Belfast at end of holiday
Mizen Head to Malin Head certificate for those that complete the trip.

Tour Price does not include:

Lunches or evening meals
Any snacks or drinks required during the day
Transport to Cork or from Londonderry/Belfast
Cost of any optional excursions, entrance fees etc.


The Country: Ireland is a predominantly rural country with a varied landscape of mountains and moorland, dotted with quiet peaceful villages and isolated farmhouses. It has a long and ragged coastline and much of this is spectacular, with long sandy beaches, some of the highest cliffs in Europe, and small rocky bays. The country has long been a popular cycling destination. An excellent network of minor roads link the many small towns and villages, and these offer some lovely cycling. Most villages still have at least one pub, and in many areas you can still find traditional evening music sessions taking place. The people are friendly and hospitable and Irish charm is well known around the world. Gaelic is still the first language in some parts of the country.

The Tour: This is a fully supported holiday with a tour leader and a vehicle to carry all the luggage and provide additional assistance if necessary. The trip is designed to enable you to complete the Irish ‘End to End’, while following a route that allows you to see many of the delights of Ireland while keeping to minor roads as much as possible. The total distance is just over 440 miles, and the daily mileage is 50 – 65 miles. There are no rest days. You do need to ensure that you are prepared for the trip. While there are no mountainous areas there are some hilly sections, with a reasonable amount of up and down, and some of these are along the coast which you will encounter during the first couple of days.

Accommodation & Food: This is a small hotel/B&B based holiday. Generally this is of our higher standard than on our other holidays (mostly 4* B&Bs), and all accommodation has en-suite facilities. Single people travelling alone will be booked into a twin bedded room with another single person of the same sex – unless the additional single supplement has been paid. Full Irish breakfast will be provided at the accommodation each morning. Evening meals are available at nearby pubs or restaurants.

Start: The holiday starts at Cork on Saturday. There is a choice of flights available from several airports in the UK and we will meet you at the the airport. There is also an overnight ferry from Swansea to Cork which arrives in Cork at 0700, and we will also meet this if necessary. Transport will be provided from Cork to the first nights accommodation or you may ride if you prefer (note that the distance is about 75 miles). The transport will leave Cork at approximately 14.15. On Sunday morning there is a short ride from the accommodation to Mizen Head, where you begin the ride to Malin Head.

Finish: The holiday ends at Malin Head. The following day we will transport you to either Londonderry Airport (from where flights are available to Birmingham, Liverpool or Stansted) or Belfast International Airport (from where there are flights to most UK regional airports). The coach will drop you at Londonderry at approximately 10.00 and arrive at Belfast International at about 11.00. Note: The cost of the flight to Cork and the return flight from Londonderry/Belfast are not included in the cost of the holiday. You may book any flights or ferry crossing you require yourself or we will do so for you. A separate form will be sent to you if required (an additional fee is payable).

Cycle Transport: If required we offer a cycle transport service to take your bicycle from the UK to the start of the holiday at Mizen Head, and return your bike from Malin Head to anywhere in the UK (additional fee payable).

Documents: Although British Nationals do not require a passport to visit either the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland, you do need to ensure that you carry official photo ID, and for most people a passport is the easiest form of ID. Nationals of most other countries only need a passport. You are also required to have travel insurance for the duration of the holiday, although British passport holders do not require insurance to visit the North. If you do not purchase insurance from us you will be required to provide evidence of a suitable alternative policy.

Bikes: All types of cycle are suitable for the trip. The most important thing is that the bike functions properly and that you are comfortable riding it. However you should make sure that your bike has suitable gears as there are some steep hills on parts of the route. Most people will require a cycle with a triple chainset. If you are riding a mountain bike then you should fit it with narrow ‘slick’ tyres. You should also make sure that you are able to carry some spare food and clothing with you on the bike. The route does cross some wild exposed areas with little in the way of shelter and no services, and you can get very cold and wet if the weather is bad.