Thanks to its charming castles, imposing cliffs and notoriously good beer, the Republic of Ireland is one of my clients’ favourite holiday destinations. Recently, one of them asked me to craft an itinerary for a road trip that encompassed the best of Ireland, which was quite a feat. Luckily, my many trips to this beautiful island prepared me well, and I thoroughly enjoyed reliving my happy holiday memories while creating a route that struck a great balance between countryside, coast and city visits (if I may say so myself!).
If exploring the natural and cultural gems of Ireland by car sounds like a fantastic getaway to you, you’re not alone. Among my clients who are disabled, holidays that are spent out on the road always receive highly positive reviews. So why not let my expert team and me create an itinerary for a self-drive trip through Ireland? To give you an idea of what your holiday could entail, take a look at the route that I recently created. It was a huge success!
Getting to Ireland
Before you can start driving, the logistical undertaking of getting to Ireland awaits. While this may sound like a challenge, it’s really easy as pie: we’re able to book flights for you or, if you’re driving your own car, organise a ferry ride.
I always recommend starting your road trip in the capital city of Dublin, as it’s easily accessible by both plane and car. What’s more, beholding the city’s attractions is a fantastic way of beginning your holiday: after all, its historical highlights – not to mention its “stronger” beverages – are world-renowned. We often book minibus and taxi tours for our clients, which are fully accessible and allow them to get a good sense of the city in a short span of time. If you’d like to get out in the fresh air (but hopefully not rain), we’d also be happy to organise an accessible outdoor walking tour for you. Snap some photos and have a Guinness or two – what could be better?
After experiencing the hustle and bustle of Dublin, it’s worth taking a leisurely drive to the coastal city of Waterford, which is only two and a half hours away. If you’re a history buff, you may know that Waterford is actually the oldest city in all of Ireland, dating back to 914. In addition to learning about its longstanding history and exploring its historic streets and architecture, you can look forward to its breathtaking coastal views, excellent pubs and romantic charm.
When you’re ready to keep driving, head two hours west to the “Rebel City”, otherwise known as Cork. As its nick name suggests, this vibrant city is famous for having a mind of its own, which was first discovered when it supported the controversial War of Roses’ Yorkist Cause. Nowadays, however, its reputation is nothing but favourable: in 2005, it even became the European Capital of Culture. Given Cork’s diverse range of attractions, ranging from cathedrals to up-and-coming art galleries, we’ve arranged more accessible excursions around the city over the years than we can count.
If you’re looking for a spot that has both natural and cultural troves, driving to Killarney is your best bet. This intriguing town is about one and a half hours away from Cork, and is best known for its legendary lakes, forests and mountains. The town centre, which is home to the marvellous St. Mary’s Cathedral and countless cafes, pubs and restaurants, is also well worth a visit. Why not kill two birds with one stone by opting for one of our itinerary staples, which combines seeing the cathedral with a visit to Killarney National Park?
If you’re disabled, holidays in Ireland are not complete without stopping by Limerick, situated on the River Shannon. This delightful city is not only Ireland’s first City of Culture, but is also particularly wheelchair-friendly, thanks to its easily navigable streets and large number of accessible hotels. In addition to visiting its architectural landmarks and browsing through its fantastic art galleries, it’s lovely to simply watch life go past while enjoying a steamy cappuccino or a cold beer.
Back to the Start
Limerick is about two and a half hours away from Dublin. If you’d like to split up the drive back to the airport or ferry, you could embrace your inner explorer and stop off at some other cities or towns that strike your fancy. After spending some time outdoors and having a leisurely lunch, you’ll feel refreshed and ready to tackle the rest of your drive back to Dublin.
Although getaways are often anxiety-inducing if you’re disabled, holidays don’t have to be stressful – in fact, if you go at your own speed on a self-drive road trip through Ireland, you’re sure to return feeling fully relaxed and rested. And, if you’re hoping to avoid the time-consuming task of planning the route of your dreams, why not let us do it for you? Get in touch today.