Our starting point is Cork City on the banks for the river Lee. It is the river that provides our inspiration as we begin our journey following backroads along its course to the wonderful glacial lake and hermitage retreat of Gougane Barra.
The fresh salty air of the Atlantic Ocean is our next inspiration as we sweep down towards Bantry Bay and take in the wonderfully remote and unspoilt charms of the Sheep’s Head Peninsula. We hug the coastline for the rest of the week takin in the charming villages of Baltimore, Union Hall and Glandore, with the nearby Neolithic stone circle of Drombeg.
The towns of Clonakilty and Kinsale await where the brightly coloured villages compete with each other for your attention, all this connected by sweet scented fushia-lined backroads. The group tour finishes up in Kinsale, whereas the self guided tour heads back to Cork city for the last night.
We also organise an “Easy” tour in West Cork which has reduced mileage with more rest days and finishes up in the beautiful seaside village of Schull.
We run both guided & self guided tours for you to choose from.
Day 1: Arrive in Cork
The group meets at 6.30 pm in the Bar of River Lee Hotel, Western Road. The hotel is only the meeting point and not our actual accommodation. However if you get there before the meeting time and wish to explore the city you can leave your luggage in the left luggage at the hotel reception.
An introductory talk from the guide is followed by a light bar food menu, while your bags are transferred to our guesthouses. Afterwards you might decide to head into the city for a drink in one of Cork’s lively pubs.
Day 2: Cork to Gougane Barra 67km
Your cycle starts by the banks of the Lee where you travel along quiet back roads to a lunch stop in the market town of Macroom. In the afternoon you continue up the Lee Valley through rolling countryside to the wonderfully peaceful Lakeside retreat of Gougane Barra , the source of the River Lee and Irelands first National Park.
Day 3: Gougane Barra to Ahakista 43km
You cycle down to the coast past fields of grazing cattle and sheep to the coastal town of Bantry for lunch. In the afternoon you head out to the beautiful Sheeps Head Peninsula and cycle along quiet coastal roads with stunning views of the surrounding landscape. That night you have a home cooked dinner in your guesthouse.
Day 4: Ahakista to Baltimore 26km
You cycle onto the Mizen Peninsula in the morning and the village of Schull. After lunch you can either cycle the coast road or else take a ferry across Roaring Water Bay (it is usually quite calm!) to the village of Baltimore.
Day 5: Rest Day in Baltimore
Baltimore is a lovely village to potter around for the day or else you can take off to explore the nearby islands and countryside.
Day 6: Baltimore to Clonakilty 57km
In the morning you cycle along quiet backroads to the peaceful Lough Ine and then follow the West Cork coast to the village of Glandore where you can have lunch overlooking the beautiful Glandore Harbour with its two islands, Adam and Eve. In the afternoon you can visit a 3,000 year old stone circle , one of the best examples of its kind in the country, before following another scenic coastal cycle to the bustling town of Clonakilty.
Day 7: Clonakilty to Cork 57km
In the morning you head straight to the village of Timoleague, where you can visit a 15th Century Franciscan Friary. You continue to hug the coastline all the way to the historic town of Kinsale, site of the Battle of Kinsale in 1601 where you can have lunch.
Unlike the group tour on the self led tour we continue our journey back into Cork city, along quiet roads, where you spend the last night of the tour.
Day 8: Saturday: Tour ends. In the morning you are free to make your own way back to Cork City which is 18 miles (29 km) away.
The roads are all sealed and the route is designed to ensure that you spend most of the week on quiet back roads, away from the main tourist routes. Routes have some hilly sections that require a good level of fitness, however this is one of the less difficult tours we offer in Ireland.
The nearest international airports are Shannon and Dublin. Buses depart each city for Galway on a regular basis. There is also a regular train service from Dublin to Galway. Schedules are provided in your tour package.
Our escorted bicycle tours include all services provided to our “Individual” riders, as well as the following additional services:
2018 departure dates: June 23, August 4
|Price per person, double occ.||CAD||$1345|
|Single rooms on request||$400|
|Single share||No surcharge|
|Surcharge for August departure||$60|
This tour includes:
Self guided tours are available from April to October and can start any day of the week.
|Price per person, double occ.||CAD||$1355|
|Single room surcharge||$400|
|High season surcharge for July & August departures||$60|
This tour includes:
Telephone: 705-949-1710 or 888-297-4786
Station Mall, 293 Bay St., Sault Ste Marie, P6A 1X3
Monday to Friday: 9.30 am. to 5.30 pm.
Saturday: by appointment