The Irish Like a Good Story
And we make sure you hear some of the best of them in everyone's favorite lecture hall: the local pub. As you bike from village to village among stone-bordered fields of grazing sheep, we introduce you to old friends like Mike Murphy, a retired schoolteacher and passionate local historian who can tell you everything you need to know about Irish history – real or imagined – over a pint of Guinness. And he may even sing a traditional song to see you on your way.
The Best Leaders in Ireland
Backroads has the best-qualified people to lead your trip in Ireland, and our guests back that up, rating our Trip Leaders an average of 9.75 out of 10 for all-around quality of performance. Get the facts (and no fluff) on how we recruit and develop the very best people for your trip.
Great Bikes Included (or Upgrade)
Choose a Backroads Custom Titanium or Custom Electric Assist bike—both are included in your trip price. Maybe a Specialized carbon-fiber pro model is more your speed or go for double fun on a tandem. Our fleet is the best in active travel, so you don't have to roll the dice on this vital trip component. Learn why our titanium bikes are ideal for most riders. See the bike options for this trip.
Navigate Your Way in Ireland
Your ride comes equipped with a Garmin Edge Explore 1000, the best bike-touring GPS device on the market. This is a Backroads exclusive, and it's included with your bike in Ireland. If you prefer to bring your own device, we also have downloadable GPS files and of course, our good old paper directions are always available. Read more on why our navigation options are the best.
Everyone at Their Own Pace
We design and support our Ireland trips to suit mixed abilities and varied interests—so you can set your own pace, then change things up as the day unfolds. And all guests are free to do the same, traveling together or apart, with no one cramping anyone else's style. Which sounds easy in theory, but it's hard to pull off. Here's more on how we do it.
The Value of Casual Inn Trips
In addition to the ideal balance of comfort and hospitality in our choice of lodgings, this Casual Inns trip includes nearly all of your meals, plus everything from cocktail receptions to the best snacks along the road. So there's rarely a need to reach for your wallet – we've got you covered.
More Leaders to Support You
On our Ireland trips we have an extra leader supporting you along the road—for a total of three, compared to the industry standard two. So we can be in more places at once, giving personal attention to guests traveling at their own pace. Here's more on our Trip Leaders.
A Second Van When You Need It
Backroads is the only active travel company providing two support vans in Ireland—because we know it's essential to ensure a truly great travel experience. It doubles our ability to be there when you need us to offer hydration, lighten your load or give you a lift if it's time to take a break. Read more on why two vans make all the difference.
Our Cultural Roots Run Deep
Thanks to our extensive connections in Ireland, Backroads takes you off the beaten track and deep into the region's culture in ways that traditional travel can never hope to do. We know the people and their customs, the legacy of art and architecture, the complex history and politic—and if we're not sure, our amazing local experts can fill in the blanks.
Your Trip Will Run. Period.
Under our Book with Confidence policy, your Backroads trip will run even for one or two people (or a family of three or four), subject to a nominal extra fee. Or transfer to another trip, and we'll give you a credit. It's all part of our trademark commitment to treating guests with integrity, transparency and total accountability. Read all the details.
Experts with Secrets to Share
In choosing the ideal experts to enrich your travel experience, we look for people with a wealth of local knowledge, but also the ability to convey their insights in English. Too often travelers find themselves smiling politely, not quite understanding what they're being told. Our experts share intriguing facts, anecdotes and inside stories that stay with you forever.
A Variety of Routes Each Day
In Ireland you head off each morning after choosing among several expertly designed routes—all with detailed directions, mileage and shuttle options. Unlike trips with one fixed daily route (or worse, one guide that everyone's obliged to follow), you're free to enjoy the best of the region at your pace, stopping wherever you want to explore further.
The Right Local Pairings
Our Trip Leaders combine deep local expertise with a firm grasp of North American expectations around quality of service. By the same token, we pair experienced Backroads leaders with local guides who know how to cater to your needs while cracking open the culture or natural history in ways that are meaningful, memorable and often magical.
We Live in the Neighborhood
Our Trip Leaders in Ireland live in the area and are deeply engaged in their communities, giving them unique inside knowledge they're happy to share in making your experience that much richer. They'll introduce you to people, customs and parts of town you'd likely never encounter on your own—and teach you a few local phrases to help break the ice.
In Europe Since 1988
Backroads has been welcoming active travelers to Europe since before the Berlin Wall came down. Today it's virtually our second home. We know the perfect roads and trails, the most scenic valleys and hilltop towns, the hidden churches and gem-like museums, the up-and-coming vintners and celebrated chefs—and, of course, all the best places to stay.
Choose Your Fellow Travelers
With Backroads you won't end up with kids on what you thought was an adult trip; we have exclusive departures for families, so they're off having their own adventures. As you browse our unrivaled selection of trips and dates, you can count on finding a trip in Ireland that's geared exclusively to your choice of traveling companions.
Signature Backroads Picnics
Guests rave about our picnic spreads. Enjoy a welcome break in a scenic spot, or a quick refuel stop if you don't want to lose momentum. And because we have two vans, one can host lunch while the other is out providing support along the route.