We often think that adventure can only be sought at the end of an uncomfortable plane journey, far away from home. This is just not true! Irelandâ€™s Wild Atlantic Way is just a short hop across the sea yet offers the longest coastal route in the world.
This is a short guide to this amazing route with some tips and tricks to help you have the best time on the road.
What is the Wild Atlantic Way?
The Wild Atlantic Way â€“ or the WAW â€“ runs along the entire west coast of Ireland, stretching from Kinsale, near Cork, in the south to either Muff, near Londonderry, or Derry, in the north. The route is 2500 kilometres long and passes through six Irish regions, each with its own character.
The route offers something for everyone. There are stunning scenic views and plenty of hiking spots, as well as places to surf, ride horses and kayak. Here are a few suggestions of where you should spend your time, and what you can do there.
â€¢Donegal: Make the most of the Surf Coast and take to the waves. In winter you might catch a glimpse of the aurora borealis, while the iconic lighthouse at Cionn FhÃ¡nada is striking all year â€™round.
â€¢Clare: Take in views from the Cliffs of Moher, experience the thrill of whale watching and explore the regionâ€™s history at Dromoland Castle.
â€¢Mayo: Walk or cycle on the Great Western Greenway and visit the sacred mountain of Croagh Patrick.
â€¢Galway: Catch some local live music in a proper Irish pub or warm up after a swim with a stroll around the Salthill Promenade.
â€¢Cork: The largest county with plenty to offer, including the gorgeous Inchydoney Beach. However, a real highlight is Garnish Island, a horticultural marvel with oriental and southern hemisphere flora.
Tips for Driving the WAW
â€¢Donâ€™t worry about getting lost. Not only do we have the magic of SatNav these days, but the route is clearly marked with the WAW logo the whole way.
â€¢Drive south to north. This way you will be on the ocean-side of the road and can pull over much more easily to take photos or look at the view.
â€¢Narrow, winding roads mean that it can take a fair amount of time to get from point A to point B. Donâ€™t try to cram too much into one day. Instead, take your time and be realistic about how much distance you can cover. Why rush?
â€¢You donâ€™t need a huge car. The roads are in good condition, so a normal vehicle will be just fine.
Before You Go: Car Hire Excess Insurance
Even though you are not far from home, it is still important to have the right insurance in place. Car hire excess insurance is key if you are renting a vehicle to drive the Wild Atlantic Way. It covers you in case of accident or theft as well as many other things that could â€“ but hopefully wonâ€™t â€“ happen whilst you are on the road.
Ethan Bailey is an experienced adventure traveller and insurance expert with the team at Let's Go Insure. Ethan’s passion is to inspire his clients to go just that little bit further, deeper and higher on their travels and his expertise in providing the ideal insurance cover allows them to do just that. If you're looking for the best car hire excess insurance Let's Go works with the most experienced underwriters, intermediaries and insurers to offer a range of competitive insurance without compromising on cover.
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