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The Ultimate Itinerary for 7 Days in Ireland

Ireland is one of the most beloved countries in Europe, if not the world, because of its 50 shades of green, medieval castles, iconic movie/TV filming locations, scenic drives, delicious cuisine, world renown whiskey and more. Though Ireland is a small country, it has so much to see and explore. Truth be told, 7 days in Ireland was not enough for us because of the number of cities and castles we wanted to explore. So I highly recommend spending at least 7 days in Ireland, especially if it is your first trip to the Emerald Isle. And if you are the type of travelers that want to see it all during your first trip to a new destination, you are definitely going to want to read through my ultimate itinerary for 7 days in Ireland.

This itinerary is not for the faint of heart, it is for those daring to experience it all. I packed this itinerary to be as perfect as possible, including a day in Northern Ireland. From castles to Star Wars and Game of Thrones filming locations, beautiful landscapes, driving on the Ring of Kerry, touring the famous Jameson Distillery, watching a traditional Irish dance show and more. So whether you copy this itinerary day by day, or take little bits and pieces to create your own itinerary – this post of 7 days in Ireland has it all!

My itinerary for driving 7 days in Ireland is almost a complete circle of the country that starts and finishes in Dublin. It is all based on my first-hand experience and includes where to stay, places you must visit, tidbits of what you can do with additional time and more. At the end of this post, I hope you will walk away with a wealth of information to help plan your own trip to Ireland. And if you have any questions or need assistance planning your trip, I would be delighted to help you.

Full disclaimer –  Our post may contain affiliate links. When you click on the link you will have the option to purchase a product at no extra cost to you, but we would receive a small commission. We want to thank everyone for following and supporting us on all of “Our Sweet Adventures.” 

The Best Time to Visit Ireland

In my opinion, I think the best time to visit Ireland is in early May. The trees and flowers should be at full bloom, the weather is fantastic (give or take some rainy days per usual), and there are fewer crowds which mean lower costs as well.

Other great times to visit Ireland are during St. Patricks Day, April, early June, September, and October. After experiencing Oktoberfest in Munich, we can only imagine how much fun St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland must be. However, there are some sights that are not open yet. Some of the “touristy” destinations to visit and tours to enjoy only open after Easter weekend.

If you plan to visit Ireland between late June through August, be prepared for long waiting times to kiss the Blarney Stone or crowds of people along the Cliffs of Moher.

Best Way to Get Around Ireland

The best way to get around Ireland and truly enjoy everything the Emerald Isle has to offer is by renting a car. If you are not used to driving on the left side of the road, do not be discouraged – it is a lot easier than you would think! Furthermore, you can also find automatic cars at a reasonable price.

Here are a few helpful driving tips for an Ireland road trip:

  • BUY trip insurance and make sure it covers third-party vehicles. Whether you purchase it through the rental company or through another party, you must have insurance to rent vehicles in Ireland.
  • Get comfortable sharing tiny roads. Take your time and allow other cars to pass before you continue.
  • Avoid tolls – it not only saves money, but you also get to enjoy Ireland’s beautiful landscape.
  • The speedometer and speed signs in Ireland are in KPH, but if you drive to Northern Ireland it changes to MPH.
The best way to see Ireland is by renting a car and taking a road trip!

7 Days in Ireland Itinerary

It took us a long time to come up with the perfect 7 days in Ireland itinerary due to the fact that we wanted to see as much of the Emerald Isle, including Northern Ireland, as possible. The website that helped us plan our Ireland trip is Furkot. It allows you to place each destination you want to visit with the desired time you want to stay. Then it calculates your entire trip with the exact times of when you need to arrive and leave at each destination – it is amazing. To give you an idea of what our 7 days in Ireland itinerary looks like, here is a map.

A map of the perfect 7 days in Ireland itinerary. It is a full circle of Emerald Isle to see the Dark Hedges, Giants Causeway, countless castles, Ring of Kerry and more. From Dublin to the Causeway Coast, Donegal, Galway, Limerick, Dingle, Killarney and Cork. This 7 day Ireland itinerary has everything you need to have the perfect trip!

Day 1: Dublin to Donegal

Day 2: Donegal to Galway

Day 3: Galway to Dromoland Castle – 1 hour

Day 4:  Dromoland Castle to Killarney – 3 hours 15 minutes

Day 5: Killarney to Cork – 1 hour

Day 6: Cork to Dublin – 3 hours 15 minutes

Day 7: Dublin to Flying Home

Day 1: Begin your 7 Days in Ireland Itinerary from Dublin to the Causeway Coast and Donegal

If you love Game of Thrones and beautiful landscapes, then you will LOVE this first day. Once you arrive in Dublin (in the morning), pick up your rental car and hit the left side of the road! This will be a very long, but rewarding day. You start in Dublin, then make your way to Northern Ireland and finish in Donegal.

There is so much beauty to explore and see that you will feel like your next 7 days in Ireland cannot top this first day. I know it seems daunting to drive this far on your first day in Ireland, but trust me, you do not want to miss Northern Ireland and the Causeway Coast.

Visit Your First Irish Castle at Malahide Castle

What better way to start your 7 days in Ireland than with a medieval castle? The first stop is to Malahide Castle. A very picturesque castle you cannot miss in Ireland that dates back to the 12th century. There is plenty to enjoy at Malahide Castle. Visitors can enjoy a guided tour of the castle, step into the beautiful butterfly house and take a stroll through the botanical garden and fairy trail.

Stroll through the Dark Hedges

Whether you are taking an epic Game of Thrones tour or just love beautiful landscapes, you cannot miss walking through the “Kings Road”. To put it simply, the Dark Hedges are absolutely stunning in person. As a Game of Thrones fan, I truly felt like I was in Westeros. Just be sure you time this destination well because if you go between 10am to 1pm, you will most likely be fighting the crowds like you are fighting to sit on the Iron Throne.

Do not forget your best walking shoes when you pack for Ireland. Not all the roads are paved like the Dark Hedges aka Kings Road.

Walk Across Carrick-a-Rede Bridge

Walking across the famous Carrick-a-Rede Bridge is one of the most popular and sought out experiences to enjoy in Northern Ireland. The 60-foot long rope bridge is about 100 feet above the water and links the mainland of Northern Ireland to the tiny island of Carrickarede. You must visit the ticket booth in-person to pay for a specific time slot to walk across the bridge. So it is recommended to get your ticket in case the next time slot is all taken and you have to wait.

Find Yourself Mesmerized at Giants Causeway

This is by the far the most beautiful landscape in Northern Ireland and should not be missed during your trip! Giants Causeway is a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and the most visited site in Northern Ireland. Visitors can easily spend at least an hour exploring and walking along the amazing hexagonal stepping stones. They also have a state of the art visitor center where you can learn more about the history and formation of Giants Causeway.

You cannot miss the Giants Causeway during your 7 days in Ireland. It is absolutely stunning with its hexagonal stones along the coast.

Explore the Ruins of Dunluce Castle

This is one of the most dramatic landscapes and castles on the entire Emerald Isle. It is also the castle featured in Game of Thrones to create the Greyjoy Castle (or House of Greyjoy) on Pyke Island. When you visit Dunluce Castle, you can find archaeological digs that show Dunluce Town’s street grid system. Furthermore, after exploring the castles’ ruins, head down to the sea cove beneath the castle known as the Mermaid Cave – it is a true hidden gem.

Stay at a Castle Hotel Fit for Royalty

There is nothing more fitting than staying at a castle hotel on your first day in Ireland. So finish your day at Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa, a five-star hotel in Donegal, Ireland. In addition to feeling like royalty in a castle hotel, one of the best features of Lough Eske Castle is its award-winning spa. So relax and unwind at their Thermal Suite before you continue your 7 days in Ireland itinerary.

Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa is not only a beautiful, five-star castle hotel, but also one of the best spas in Ireland. It is located in Donegal, Ireland tucked away in the woods.

Total driving time: 5 hours and 35 minutes

Where to stay: Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa in Donegal or enjoy glamping in Ireland at Portsalon Luxury Camping.

If you have more time: Spend a day in Belfast, tour Bushmills Distillery

Places you cannot miss: Dark Hedges, Carrick-a-Rede Bridge, Giants Causeway

Day 2: Continue your 7 Days in Ireland Itinerary from Donegal to Galway

A trip to Ireland is not complete without a visit to Galway. So of course, I have included it in my 7 days in Ireland itinerary. There are so many beautiful places to visit just outside of the city including several different castles and a beautiful National Park. These remarkable places help break apart the long drive from Donegal to Galway.

Gaze Upon the Marvelous Benbulben

The first stop from Donegal to Galway is Sligo’s marvelous tabletop mountain called Benbulben. Whether you are hiking the trail to the top of Benbulben or gazing upon it from a grass field, it is a breathtaking sight not to be missed during your road trip in Ireland.

Try Handmade Chocolates by the Benedictine Nuns at Kylemore Abbey

Do you love chocolate and castles? If yes, you are going to be in heaven at Kylemore Abbey. The Kylemore Castle and Estate is one of the most iconic destinations in Ireland and the perfect place for a pit stop. The estate is 13,000 acres, so you will be able to stretch your legs and explore some beautiful places. Kylemore Abbey includes a Victorian Wall Garden, a neo-Gothic church, an Old Mausoleum and of course the castle itself. Furthermore, there is a chocolate kitchen where you can take a sneak peek inside the process of the Benedictine Nuns making Irish chocolate truffles and bars. Then head to the Craft & Design Gift Shop to take home some of the most delicious chocolates.

Kylemore Abbey, also known as Kylemore Castle is one of the most beautiful and iconic castles in Ireland. It sits along a long in Connemara National Park.

Enjoy a Luxurious Afternoon Tea at Ashford Castle

Check off the most luxurious item on your bucket list, afternoon tea at an Irish castle. More specifically at Ashford Castle, a five-star castle known to be one of the best hotels in the entire world. We have never experienced such luxury than at Ashford Castle and highly recommend this experience for your 7 days in Ireland itinerary. For only $50, you can enjoy unlimited tea from around the world, delicious pastries, scrumptious finger sandwiches, and fresh scones. Yes, I will say it again – everything in the afternoon tea experience is unlimited! Moreover, only guests of Ashford Castle can visit the estate. Whether they are staying at the hotel, dining for dinner, booked an activity, or having afternoon tea, only guests are able to pass through the gates. Trust me, you will want to be a guest to explore the castle grounds.

A luxurious afternoon tea experience at Ashford Castle includes unlimited teas from around the world, scrumptious sandwiches, decadent desserts and fresh scones.

Sing and Drink the Night Away at Traditional Pubs in Galway

People visit Ireland for many reasons and a few include singing, dancing, and drinking in traditional pubs. One of the cities well known for all of those activities is the one and only, Galway, Ireland. So grab a pint of Guinness and enjoy the Irish culture and lifestyle. Just note, that you will want to find your pub before 7pm because each one gets packed very quickly. Our friends and I had a very hard time finding our perfect pub at 9pm. A few of the best pubs in Galway are Taaffes Bar, Tig Coili, The Quays, Murphy’s, O’Connell’s, and Naughtons. Of course, there are plenty of other things to do in Galway, so if you have more time, I recommend spending more time here.

Total driving time: 5 hours and 15 minutes

Where to stay: Eyre Square Hotel in Galway

If you have more time: Visit Clifden Castle, spend an extra day in Galway

Places you cannot miss: Kylemore Abbey, Ashford Castle

Day 3: Dance Away from Galway to Sleep like Royalty at Dromoland Castle

This is one of the shortest drives during the 7 days in Ireland itinerary, so take your time and enjoy each destination. Furthermore, a few of these can be great day trips from Galway if you have extra time during your trip.

Visit Dunguaire Castle

Dunguaire Castle is one of the most visually stunning castles in Ireland. In addition to marveling at the castle towering over the bay, visitors can also experience a medieval banquet dinner. Though we did not have the time to enjoy the medieval banquet dinner, we have heard nothing but great reviews. So if you have more time than 7 days in Ireland, you should definitely take a step back in time and enjoy this Irish experience.

Dunguaire Castle is a beautiful castle along the Wild Atlantic Way. You can even enjoy dinner and entertainment in their banquet halls every night. It is a beautiful castle in Ireland you should not miss.
Photo courtesy of Flickr (Robert Lindsell)

Eat Chocolate at Hazel Mountain

Leave it to Our Sweet Adventures to find the best chocolate in Ireland. As a former pastry chef, I was more than impressed with the quality, creativity, and flavor of the chocolates by Hazel Mountain. It is perfectly located between Galway and the Cliffs of Moher to get your healthy dosage of chocolate.  Which is why I made sure to include Hazel Mountain in my 7 days in Ireland itinerary. Hazel Mountain is a boutique bean to bar chocolate factory and shop producing handmade chocolate truffles and bars. They only use the finest ingredients in Ireland including milk from local grass-fed cows, seaweed, honey, lavender and of course, whiskey. Be sure to make your own little truffle box featuring their special flavors of the week to enjoy at home.

Explore Ruins at Corcomroe Abbey

Corcomroe Abbey is a great little pitstop to explore more of Ireland’s beautiful ruined abbeys. It was built during the 13th century and a lot of the structure remains intact. So you can get a real sense of the magnitude the abbey had during its time. It is truly a stunning and picturesque building inside and out. Inside Corcomoroe Abbey are high archways and some incredible carvings throughout the abbey. Just outside the building is a small graveyard with several different tombstones that have also been well preserved.   

Marvel the Cliffs of Moher

Of course, an Ireland itinerary is not complete without a visit to the Cliffs of Moher. The Cliffs of Moher is without a doubt, Ireland’s most popular attraction and beloved sight amongst locals and tourists. It is best to visit as early in the morning as possible to beat the crowds and to capture incredible photos with the morning light. However, with this itinerary, it is unlikely you will be able to visit before 9am. So as long as you visit on a weekday and outside of the months of July and August, you will be okay to visit in the afternoon. Another important tip to acknowledge is the weather and walking trail. We have never experienced such high and dangerous winds than at the Cliffs of Moher, so make sure you read the weather hazard signs. Furthermore, the trail along the Cliffs of Moher is outside the managed service area, so read their safety guidelines and walk with caution. There are NO RAILINGS between you and the ocean. Respect the beauty of mother nature and stay safe.

Of course, a 7 days in Ireland itinerary is not complete without a trip to the Cliffs of Moher.

Learn Falconry and Go Clay Shooting at Dromoland Castle

One of the most exciting and fun activities you can enjoy in Ireland is falconry and clay shooting. Both activities are widely popular throughout the country, so a lot of hotels in the countryside offer them to their guests. One hotel that offers great falconry and clay shooting lessons is at Dromoland Castle. We had the BEST time going for a walk with our falcon. Our guide would place food on our glove and the falcon would come soaring down to grab it – truly a surreal experience. As for clay shooting, that was another thrilling adventure. We each got 30 bullets (3 rounds of 10) to practice our shot and hit the clay flying in the air. Furthermore, we also had the amazing opportunity to stay at Dromoland Castle and live like a King and Queen. I highly recommend everyone booking at least one night at Dromoland Castle to enjoy luxurious accommodations, fun activities, and delicious cuisine.

A woman smiling and looking at an owl after a unique and fun falconry experience at Dromoland Castle.

Total driving time: 2 hours and 40 minutes

Where to stay: Dromoland Castle

If you have more time: Visit Burren National Park

Places you cannot miss: Cliffs of Moher, Hazel Mountain Chocolate

Day 4: Drive Along the Dingle Peninsula to Killarney

On this day you will continue to drive along the Wild Atlantic Way and begin your scenic route on the Dingle Peninsula. Though this day might be a semi-long drive, it will be one of the most beautiful drives of your life. Moreover, a 7 day in Ireland itinerary is not complete without some Star Wars fandom. In addition to an amazing scenic route, this is also a great day for any Star Wars lovers because a lot of the Star Wars: The Last Jedi scenes were filmed along the Dingle Peninsula. So let the force be with you during your trip to Killarney.

Visit King John’s Castle

King John’s Castle is one of the more visitor-friendly castles in Ireland and is located in Limerick. The castle is not only fun to explore, but it also includes an engaging exhibit for all ages. The exhibit features touchscreen technology, 3D models, animated projections and an activity room for children. One of our favorite places in King John’s Castle was the top of a battlement which had an amazing 360° panorama view of the city.

Enjoy the Scenic Drive Along the Dingle Peninsula

We saw so many beautiful landscapes throughout Ireland, but none took our breath away like the Dingle Peninsula. We have even driven along the Amalfi Coast and the Dingle Peninsula is almost unmatched. For most of the route, you are driving along dramatic cliffs towering over on one side, while the other side has the endless ocean crashing into the shore. Be prepared to make frequent stops along the Dingle Peninsula for some short hikes up grassy hills to find spectacular views. Words will never be able to describe how stunning this drive is, so it is best you see it for yourself!

One of Ireland's most scenic driving routes is along the Dingle Peninsula. You should not miss out on this beautiful drive during your 7 days in Ireland.

Take the Epic Picture at Dunquin Harbour

The best and most popular stop along the Dingle Peninsula is Dunquin Harbour. Why? It is one of the most “Instagrammable” destinations in Ireland. So get your camera ready to take one epic photo. Of course, travel is not about Instagram, so take in the precious moment enjoying one of the most beautiful spots in Ireland.

Photo courtesy of Flickr (Giuseppe Milo)

Visit the Most Western Point of Ireland

Dunmore Head is the most western point in Ireland and features two great places to visit, a beach and an awesome view at the top of the hill. We had the best time at Slea Head Beach, as did many other tourists, surfers, and dogs. Slea Head Beach is known as one of the best beaches in Ireland and we could see why. It is a very lively and safe beach to find hidden coves and watch the waves crash into the towering cliffs. At the top of Dunmore Head, you can see the Great Blasket Islands. More importantly, Dunmore Head is used as part of Ahch-To, a.k.a. the planet in Star Wars known as the birthplace of the Jedi Order. If you look hard enough along Dunmore Head’s coastline, you might be able to find Luke Skywalker’s X-wing hidden just beneath the water.

Visit the Famous Star Wars Beehives Huts

You do not have to travel to Skellig Michael to find the famous Star Wars beehive huts. The beehive huts can be found driving along Ireland’s scenic Slea Head Drive. You do have to pay 3 euros to visit the beehive huts, but for 3 euros they are definitely worth it. The beehive huts, more formerly known as Ceann Sibéal, existed long before Star Wars. They date back to the prehistoric times, around 2,000 B.C., which is quite incredible. So either take out your lightsaber and feel the force or enjoy some remarkable architecture from the prehistoric times.

Have a Scoop of Ice Cream at Murphy’s

You cannot visit Ireland without enjoying a scoop of ice cream or sorbet from Murphy’s. Murphy’s ice cream has become a little empire in Ireland that started it Dingle and has grown to 5 more locations throughout the country. What makes Murphy’s special is its quality of ingredients. They receive their milk from the Kerry cows, (some of the best cows in the world), use free-range eggs, organic sugar, sea salt from the Dingle sea water and distill Dingle rain to make their sorbets. Murphy’s ice cream is the true definition of sourcing from local resources and farmers. Their dedication truly shows in every lick and bite of ice cream and/or sorbet you enjoy. Furthermore, everyone welcomes you with warm hospitality and their flavor combinations are genius!

Total driving time: 4 hours and 57 minutes

Where to stay: Cahernane House Hotel

If you have more time: Visit Inch beach, Skellig Michael and spend an extra day in Dingle

Places you cannot miss: Dunquin Harbour, driving along the Dingle Peninsula, ice cream at Murphy’s

Day 5: Drive Along the Ring of Kerry to Cork

As you continue your 7 days in Ireland itinerary, you will be driving along another amazing and scenic route, the Ring of Kerry. This drive is more about the beautiful Irish countryside than the Dingle Peninsula. You will also explore several different destinations within Killarney National Park and finish your day with a glass of Jameson.

Visit Ross Castle

Ross Castle is known as one of the strongest and more fortified castles in Ireland because of its defensive wall on the edge of Lake Lough Leane. It was built during the 15th century and still stands tall today. Visitors can explore the castle grounds within the fortified wall on their own or take a guided tour inside the castle.

Hike in Killarney National Park to Torc Waterfall

One of the best places to go hiking in Ireland is in Killarney National Park. Moreover, whether you are an avid hiker or do not hike at all, “hiking” to Torc Waterfall in Killarney National Park is a must. I recommend you do this first thing in the morning as it is the most popular destination in Killarney National Park and can get very crowded. In addition, parking is very limited – we had to drive in circles for 30 minutes to find a parking spot just to “hike” five minutes to Torc Waterfall. With that said, everything is worth it when you walk through the beautiful green, mossy forest and come across the water cascading down some of Ireland’s most beautiful landscape.

Visit Muckross House and Gardens

Another fantastic place to visit within Killarney National Park is Muckross House and Gardens. Even if you do not take the guided tour inside Muckross House, just walking around the grounds of the estate to see architectural beauty is enough to make this a destination on your 7 days in Ireland itinerary. Furthermore, walking along Muckross Lake has some breathtaking views and is a great way to spend a nice day in Ireland.

Getting Lost at Muckross Abbey

Visiting Muckross Abbey was one of our favorite experiences in Ireland because it was exactly what we imagined Ireland to be – exploring ruins on our own and getting lost along the way. Muckross Abbey looks just like all of the other ruins in Ireland from the outside, but in the inside, it escapes you into another world. I remember following Adam into a corridor of Muckross Abbey and one minute later not being able to find him for another twenty minutes.

There are several grand opening areas that connect with little nooks that you can travel through until you find another huge room to explore. Then you come across the most beautiful tree in the middle of a courtyard surrounded by stone walls. Needless to say, Muckross Abbey will surprise you with its hidden beauty and you will feel like you have been transported back in time.

A true hidden gem in Ireland is Muckross Abbey. There is so much to explore within the ruined abbey that it will surely be the highlight of your trip in Ireland.

Scenic Drive on the Ring of Kerry

Every road trip in Ireland needs to include the Ring of Kerry. This driving route is famous for a very good reason – it is truly breathtaking and one of the most scenic drives you will ever encounter in your life. Two of the most photographic landscapes along the Ring of Kerry are Moll’s Gap and Gap of Dunloe. Both are very close to Killarney National Park which makes day-5 the perfect time to visit for your 7 days in Ireland itinerary. Just make sure you drive slow to not only take in every moment but to also find little parking spots to jump out and take photos.

Kiss the famous Blarney Stone at Blarney Castle

If you plan to visit any castle in Ireland, you must include Blarney Castle during your 7 days in Ireland. It is one of the most famous castles in the world due to the legendary Blarney Stone. Visitors travel near and far to wait in line just to place their lips upon the cold, wet Blarney Stone and receive the gift of eloquence.

Is it worth it? Absolutely! In addition to the Blarney Stone, this was our favorite castle because it was so much fun to explore. Like Muckross Abbey, there are so many levels with little nooks and crannies that you can easily get lost and feel transported back in time.

Drink Liquid Gold at the Jameson Distillery

Regardless if you drink whiskey, visiting the Jameson Distillery is a must for any trip to Ireland. I do not like any whiskey and even I had a great time. Of course, Jameson is Adam’s favorite whiskey, so he had the BEST time! The guided tour takes visitors throughout the distillery to learn about Jameson’s history, the entire process of making Irish whiskey and what makes Jameson special. The tour lasts around 75 minutes and finishes with a complimentary glass of Jameson.

A guy standing in front of a Jameson building in Cork, Ireland - one of the best things to do during your 7 days in Ireland.

Total driving time: 3 hours

Where to stay: Hotel Isaacs Cork in Cork or if you prefer a country house outside of the city, try Ballymaloe Country House Hotel

If you have more time: Visit a cheese factory in West Cork, the English Market, Blackrock Castle Observatory, and the city of Cobh.

Places you cannot miss: Torc Waterfall, Muckross Abbey, driving the Ring of Kerry, Blarney Castle, and Jameson Distillery

Day 6: Finish your 7 days in Ireland Itinerary in Dublin

After 6 days of driving, it is time to relax, drink, eat and explore in the capital of Ireland – Dublin. I cannot think of a better city to finish an epic trip throughout the country than Dublin. The city is vibrant in culture, tradition, and charm.

Explore Rock of Cashel

The Rock of Cashel is the most stunning fortress you will ever see. It sits on top of a hill towering over the city of Cashel. The fortress has several different elements to it that were all built during different periods of time. It has a complete 11th century round tower, a 12th-century Romanesque chapel, a 13th-century Gothic cathedral, a 15th century Hall of the Vicars Chora and a dramatic Gothic graveyard with beautiful Celtic high crosses.

You will find yourself mesmerized by the sheer magnitude of the fortress when you are exploring within the ruins. Furthermore, you can also drive down to Hore Abbey to wander through more ruins that are similar to the ones found at Rock of Cashel.

Rock of Cashel sits majestically above the city, Cashel, Ireland. It is a stunning fortress full of history dating back to the 12th century. Though it is still standing tall, the fortress is exactly what you would imagine when thinking of a medieval fortress in ruins.
Photo courtesy of Flickr (Warren LeMay).

Visit Kilkenny Castle

Kilkenny Castle is one of the very few castles in Ireland that truly let visitors see countless rooms. One of the more well-known rooms is the picture gallery wing with several beautiful portraits hanging on a vibrant red wall. Another great feature of Kilkenny Castle is the ability to take a guided tour of the castle or a self-guided tour using an informational pamphlet. Overall, it is an amazing castle inside and out that should not be missed.

Explore the Heart of Ireland in Dublin

Exploring the streets of Dublin is the perfect way to finish your 7 days in Ireland itinerary. Simply because it is extremely difficult to drive within the city. Furthermore, after driving for 6 days in a row, it is nice to relax and visit some of the most well-known pubs in the world. A few Dublin attractions you should not miss are the Guinness Storehouse, The Brazen Head and The Temple Bar. Some other things to do in Dublin that does not include alcohol – Dublin Castle, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Ha’penny Bridge, Trinity College Library, St. Stephen’s Green and Kilmainham Goal.

A trip to Ireland in 7 days is not complete without a visit and drink at the Temple Bar.

Traditional Irish Dance and Craic

There is no better way to spend your last night in Ireland than with traditional Irish food, dancing, music, and craic. So, visit Johnnie Fox’s Pub to experience one of the best nights of your life. Johnnie Fox’s Pub is not only the highest pub in Dublin but also one of the best pubs in Ireland.  With that said, it is not easy to get to, so I highly recommend booking their shuttle bus. Furthermore, the pub has a wide variety of traditional Irish cuisine and nightly live music, but the real treat is their Hooley Show. Our night at Johnnie Fox’s Pub was one of our favorite experiences of our entire 7 days in Ireland.

The entire show was outstanding! The band played Irish music we had never heard before and then some favorites like Galway Girl and Whiskey in a Jar. In between songs they would tell stories and crack jokes (craic) and then towards the end of the show the Irish dancers came on stage. I honestly cannot put words onto paper (online) to give this show justice so you will have to trust me when I say, go to Johnnie Fox’s Pub Hooley Night!

Total driving time: 3 hours and 33 minutes

Where to stay: Cliff Townhouse

If you have more time: Spend an extra day in Dublin and take a day trip to Bray and the Wicklow Mountains

Places you cannot miss: Rock of Cashel, Trinity College Library, Temple Bar and the Hooley Show at Johnnie Fox’s Pub

Day 7: Fly Home

Unfortunately, all great things must come to an end. On your last day in Ireland, visit any destinations you might have missed the day before or just take a leisurely walk with a cup of coffee and reminisce all the great memories you created over the last 6 days. Before you know it, you will be back on a plane going home wishing you had one more pint of Guinness or glass of Jameson at a local pub in the land of the Irish.

If this 7 days in Ireland itinerary seems daunting and you need help planning and booking your trip, I would be more than happy to help! Just contact me here and I will respond as quickly as possible.




  • Sheree

    Wow, this guide is extensive! Super full of useful information and has definitely inspired my wanderlust. Despite being from England I haven’t made it over to Ireland yet – a bit embarrassing when you consider how close they are but I will definitely change that! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • oursweetadventures

      Thank you so much for your kind words. I am sure you will enjoy Ireland when you make it over. England is next on our list! 🙂

    • Shauna

      Would this itinerary be ok during late December?

      • oursweetadventures

        Personally, I would look into staying in 2-3 places and doing several day trips. For example, staying in Galway and Dublin. I’ve never been to Ireland in Winter, but I would eliminate the drive along the Dingle Peninsula and Ring of Kerry. Also look into the times of castles and other attractions as they probably close sooner than spring and summer seasons. Please let me know if you have any further questions or need help planning your trip to Ireland!

  • Paula

    Such a wonderful itinerary! Ireland is a beautiful place and your post really shows the highlights!

    • oursweetadventures

      Thank you. I am delighted to hear you enjoyed the itinerary. It means a lot and I greatly appreciate it.

  • Julie

    Such a detailed and informative guide! Loved it. Still haven’t been to Ireland so this definitely have me some inspiration:)

    • oursweetadventures

      Aww thank you, I’m thrilled you loved it. I hope you are able to visit soon and use my guide.

  • Aga

    Great post. I’ve only been to Dublin, and would love to see more of Ireland. This post will definitely be helpful while planning it.

    • oursweetadventures

      There is so much diverse culture and landscape to explore in Ireland. We actually hope to spend more time in Dublin the next time we visit.

  • Dani Gill

    Thanks for all the detail on Ireland. I’ll be referring back to this post when we make it there one day, looks awesome!!

    • oursweetadventures

      My pleasure, happy to help others plan an incredible trip to Ireland!

  • The.Holidaymaker

    Such a detailed itinerary. This is fantastic. I have saved for future reference. Great photos. Glad you had a wonderful sweet adventure!

    • oursweetadventures

      Thank you so much.

  • Josy A

    Blooming ‘eck! You managed to fit in sooooo much into a week!
    I used to live in Connemara each summer when I was a child, so quite a few of my friends went to school in Kylemore Abbey, my mum used to sell her paintings there! But, back when I was a child, they made fudge rather than chocolate! I think now I’l have to go back and try the choccies!! 😉

    • oursweetadventures

      Wow that is incredible! Thank you for sharing your stories. And yes, we did do a lot. I always try to see as much as possible with the notion I might not be able to revisit. And you can order their chocolates online!

  • Amy

    Wow!! Ireland is on my bucket list! You fit in so many amazing sights!! I’ve been to Scotland twice now. If I could only extend my time (and can once my teens are fully grown!), I definitely want to take in Ireland as well.

    • oursweetadventures

      We did and we still had so much more we wanted to see, but not enough time. I am sure you will have a great time in Ireland with your family one day.

  • April

    What a great guide. I’m looking to spend 6-8 days in Ireland in July (I know, main tourist time, but it’s the only time that I’ll have) and this post is really helpful in ideas for planning what to do. I love all the stops you can do for chocolate! Nice bonus. I’m saving this for later when I get to planning my trip.

    • oursweetadventures

      Aww thank you so much for your kind words. I’m so happy to hear my itinerary has helped! Please don’t hesitate to ask me any questions when you start planning. You will love Ireland!

  • Julie

    Such a nice and informative post. Love the itinerary. A road trip like this around Ireland, would be so much fun:)

    • oursweetadventures

      Thank you, I am happy to hear you enjoyed the post and found it helpful. I highly recommend a road trip throughout Ireland. Best way to see the country!

  • Teresa Lopez

    Thank you so much for sharing your trip! Do you have a list of favorite restaurants from your adventures?

    • oursweetadventures

      Aww it is my pleasure! I hope you have found my itinerary useful. We mostly always ate breakfast and another meal in the hotels we stayed at. In Northern Ireland we ate The Nook. I have a post on Northern Ireland that goes into further details of the area and includes that restaurant. Then we had lunch at Ashford Castle for our afternoon tea. In Dublin we loved the food at Cliff Townhouse. Unfortunately, all the other meals outside of hotels were just out of the blue and based on recommendations from the hotel concierge. I’m sorry!

  • Cassie

    Hi! I love your post so much that I am planning my own road trip around the island! Can you point me in the right direction for the requirements for a US Citizen to be able to rent a car and drive in Ireland? What did you have to do to prepare before your trip? Thanks!

    • oursweetadventures

      Hi Cassie,

      Thank you so much for reaching out and for your kind words – I greatly appreciate it!

      To rent a car, car rental companies REQUIRE car insurance i.e. collision damage waiver. Besides that, just make sure you book your rental before your trip and be prepared to drive on the left side of the road! You can also rent automatic cars if you are not comfortable with a manual. This post of mine might be helpful. If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to reach out!

  • Amy

    I love this itinerary! did you build this trip on your own or go through a travel agent or a travel site? Im looking to book for april or may but can’t seem to find any packages that go all over ireland inc. north. please help lol

    • oursweetadventures

      Hi Amy, thank you so much for your kinds words! I am a travel agent and built this itinerary myself. I sent you a separate email of further details. I look forward to hearing from you soon!

  • Gregory Corraro

    Hi, thank you for this awesome blog article. It helped me very much!

    • oursweetadventures

      I am so glad to hear you enjoyed my article.

  • Blake

    My mom and I arrive to Ireland tomorrow at 10:45am, do you think we will be able to fit everything in that is recommended on your day 1 itinerary? Any suggestions?

    • oursweetadventures

      I would save that for another day because of the time you arrive. It is neat to have a full day and start early.

  • Nitin Goel

    Informative and well explained. Great tips. I have bookmarked it for future references. Thanks for sharing such an valuable and helpful article.

    • oursweetadventures

      My pleasure! I am delighted to hear my guide has been very helpful.

  • Cindy

    Wow! This is amazing! We’re looking to spend about 6-8 days there in June of this year, and I had mapped out a very similar route. Although we also want to stop in Belfast for the Titanic museum. I was starting to think maybe we could/should do a few things as day trips (tours) from Dublin or Belfast, but now I’m not so sure! We have a teenage son with us too, so that has to play into things, like where to stay! LOL! I’ll definitely bookmark your page and read more thoroughly soon. And share with my husband. I truly was starting to think that the driving was going to take up too much time, but it sounds like you guys made it through it. Just being from the US, where a road trip is such a different experience.

    • oursweetadventures

      Hi, thank you so much for your comment. I’m delighted to hear you found this post helpful. If all the driving sounds like too much, I would suggest doing day trips from Dublin and Galway. But you have to account for the cost of group tours and not being in control of everything you want to see and do.

      I am also a travel agent and if you need help, I would be more than happy to assist you. Please contact me via email (contact page) 🙂

      • Cindy

        Oh no! Your post actually makes the driving plan sound much more doable! I had looked at a couple of those tours, but you’re right, it limits what you really see and then the added cost for 3 people! We may not hit all the things you did, but this is about 80% of what we want to see. I know our one challenge will be making sure we book a room each night that can accommodate the 3 of us, but we’re used to that, having traveled in the UK before.

        Thanks for the info! It’s a great help!

        • oursweetadventures

          Ohh wonderful! Thank you for your kind words. The itinerary is definitely fast paced but adding one night on Belfast will help split up one of the longest driving days.

          • Cindy

            Yes! We’re most likely coming into Dublin from Holyhead during the day, then head up to Belfast. We want to see the Titanic museum there, so we’d spend a night there then before heading up to Giant’s Causeway. I actually printed out Google maps showing the distance between the major points we’re looking at right now. We just need to decide how far we want to go after Giant’s Causeway, as we really want to get to Cliffs of Moher after that. But we’ll figure out the best stop for us I’m sure.

          • oursweetadventures

            Sounds like y’all have a great plan so far! Good luck and please do not hesitate to reach out if you need help!

  • Jennifer

    I love this itinerary and really going to use a lot of it on our 10 year wedding anniversary to Ireland in June. Thank you so much. Any other helpful stuff you have outside of his would b grateful. Kinda excited about that clay shooting.

    • oursweetadventures

      First of all, congratulations!!! That is amazing and so inspiring 🙂 I am delighted to hear my post has been helpful. If you have any questions, please contact me and I will be happy to help. I have a lot of content on Ireland – just click ireland via destination tab. It includes hotel reviews, tips on driving in Ireland and more!

  • Kimberly

    This itinerary looks absolutely perfect!!!! Do you have any idea of the possible cost? Not including flight?

    • oursweetadventures

      Hi, thank you so much! I believe we spent around $3,000 because of luxury hotels. This budget included food, tours, tickets, gas, and a rental car. Please let me know if you need any help planning or booking your trip – I am also a home-based travel agent 🙂

  • Larissa

    How much did all this cost

    • oursweetadventures

      Hi, this cost us around $3000 – $4,000 due to the luxury hotel stays and dinners inside them.

  • Amanda

    Hey there, just curious where in Ireland the first picture at the top of the post was taken?

    • oursweetadventures

      Hi, that photo was taken along the Dingle Peninsula.

  • Sarah Gushue

    Hello, such a fantastic itinerary! We are looking at going the first week of October for 8 nights. Is there anything that you would have changed in your itinerary if you were to do it again? Any locations you felt tight on time or wished you had more time in? Or too much time in? Thanks!! I am definitely planning on using your itinerary for our trip!

    • oursweetadventures

      Hi, thank you so much for your kind words. I am delighted to hear you are using our itinerary to help plan your own. Since you have 8 nights, you will have more time than us and I would spend that extra night in Dublin. My husband would say that he would have liked to spend one more night in Dromoland Castle to relax and enjoy more of the property. It was difficult to always pack and unpack every night since we were in a different hotel. However, we really wanted to be able to see and do it all in one trip, so that was the consequence we had to endure. I hope this helps and if you need any further assistance, please feel free to contact me. I help build itineraries for clients all over the world.

  • Sam

    Hi! I’m currently making an itinerary for our trip to Ireland in June and I’ve found this extremely helpful, specifically your day 1. How long would you say you spent at each location? I’m trying to map out our times at each and I’ve having a hard to fitting everything in our schedule. Thanks!

    • oursweetadventures

      Hi, I am so delighted to hear my itinerary has been helpful in your trip planning. I believe we spent 30 minutes at Dark Hedges, 1 – 1.5 hours at Carreck-e-rede Bridge, almost 2 hours at Giants Causeway, and less than 30 minutes at Dunluce Castle. I hope this helps 🙂

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