Ireland is a beautiful country with a rich history and culture. The Emerald Isle features landscapes, cliffs, forests, castles, and historic ruins that keep tourists coming back. Ireland is also a popular destination for exploring its world-famous nightlife.
Typically, tourists plan seven days, nine days, and 14 days Ireland itineraries. But, the number of days you need is determined by the number of sites you would like to see, your budget, and other factors.
If you’re looking for the best way to enjoy some days in this great country, you’ve come to the right place.
This article covers how to plan a 7-day Ireland itinerary, places to visit, where to stay, and fun activities for tourists in Ireland.
How many days are enough to see Ireland?
Seven days is enough to see Ireland. However, you must consider certain factors to ensure you have the best time.
For example, the time of year you visit Ireland is crucial. The weather in Ireland can be freezing around January and February, between 4 and 7 degrees. So this time may not be the best if you are worried about cold weather.
In addition, the type of activities you wish to engage in will determine how long your stay will be.
If you want to see all of the most popular tourist attractions like the EPIC museum, ST. Stephen’s Green, or Trinity College, then a 7-day Ireland trip is going to be enough time for you.
However, Suppose you want to make more side trips like visiting the Rock of Cashel or Galway, which require several days of driving. In that case, a more extended Ireland trip might be best for you.
When planning your Ireland itinerary, you also need to consider your budget. Typically, Ireland is a more expensive destination than many other European cities.
Whether you’re looking for an Ireland 7-days itinerary or Ireland 10 days itinerary, the best way to plan your Ireland trip all comes down to planning a fair budget.
Ireland Itinerary for seven days
Ireland’s itinerary for seven days covers most of the exciting locales in Ireland. We recommend that you start from Dublin and end in the Province of Munster.
Here is our best 7-day Ireland itinerary:
Day 1-3, Dublin
- St. Stephen’s Green
- Kilmainham Gaol
- Trinity College
- EPIC Museum
Day 4-6, Wild Atlantic Way
- Old Head of Kinsale, County Cork
- Dursey Island, County Cork
- Skellig’s Islands, County Kerry
- Cliffs of Moher, County Clare
- Keem Strand, County Mayo
- Downpatrick Head, County Mayo
- Malin Head, County Donegal
Day 7, The Ring of Kerry
- The Ring of Kerry
- Killarney National Park
- Rossbeigh Beach
- Derrynane Beach
- The Ladies’ View.
Since most flights touch down in Dublin, it makes sense to begin exploring Ireland from there and work your way until the Ring of Kerry and Limerick for a seven-day trip.
Dublin, the capital city, sits graciously on the east coast of Ireland, embracing the bays of the River Liffey.
Although the city is famed for its scholarship, literature, and Nobel laureates, it is not short of fun and memorable tourist experiences.
The city’s parks, streetscapes, green curbs, and historic Victo-Georgian-styled structures like the St. Patrick Cathedral will instantly fill you with an imposing fantasy upon arrival.
Undoubtedly, it gets even better from thereon.
Here is a list of 5 top attraction sites you should visit in Dublin from Day 1-3 of your visit:
Relish an oasis of Greenish calm at St. Stephens Green
Stephen’s Green is a public park located in the city centre of Dublin.
If you are not jet-lagged or tired from the trip, this four-centuries-old park is the first place to visit after you arrive in Dublin.
As you explore this Victorian scene, you will find the perfect photo-op with several historical Irish sculptures sprawled across the park (James Joyce and Arthur Edward Guinness give the best hug).
And, if you get lucky, a few of the hundred bird species that call the park home may grace your photoshoot.
That would be awesome, right?
Stephen’s Green is open all day of the year, from 7:30 am to dusk. Sundays and bank holidays are exceptions.
If you are going with the kids, the park’s famous children’s playground has everything they need.
In addition, tourists who visit during the summertime will occasionally catch a free concert around lunchtime.
Every turn in the park is a revelling experience. You should not miss the Victorian tree-lined avenue, the bandstand, the duck pond, and public artworks before you leave.
Take a look into the Darkest Places at the Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin
Kilmainham Gaol is one of the largest and oldest gaols in Europe. Though unoccupied, within the walls of this historic site are tragic and heroic events between 1798 and 1916.
The gaol is open every day except the 24th, 25th, and 26th of December. You need to book tickets online for a guided tour of the Kilmainham Gaol.
Although a short drive, the route is filled with many exciting sites like the Guinness Storehouse, where the tale of Ireland’s most famous beer is told.
The Proclamation Sculpture and War Memorial Gardens are also worth a binge-time on your road to Kilmainham Gaol.
Enjoy the immersive terrains at Oscar Wilde’s Trinity College
Trinity College, Dublin, is Ireland’s most renowned University. It is located in the city’s heart, next to Grafton Street.
One of the greatest 19th Century poets and dramatists, Oscar Wilde, studied there. Every year, over two million people visit Trinity College, Dublin – making it one of Dublin’s most popular tourist attractions.
Another tourists favourites at Trinity College is the Long Room in the Old Library. This 65 meters long room is among the most photographed places in Dublin because it houses the 1000 years old Book of Kells.
The Book of Kells is an illuminated manuscript dating back to the 9th-century. It narrates the four Gospels of the New Testament. It is one of Ireland’s greatest cultural treasures.
Nearly everywhere in the Trinity college is a memorial site. The elegant Victorian-meets-Georgian buildings and wildflower meadows are highlights of this scenic place.
Kilmainham Gaol to Trinity college is a 21 minutes drive. There are dozens of restaurants and pubs around Trinity college, so you can grab a meal before proceeding to the next destination.
Visit the EPIC Museum
The EPIC (Irish Emigration Museum) museum in Dublin, located on the north bank of the River Liffey near Heuston Station, is one of those top 5 places. It is only a 12 minutes drive from Trinity College.
Designer Heneghan Peng won prestigious awards for its unique shape and contemporary style, which presents a welcoming face to visitors arriving by boat, bus, or car.
EPIC’s roof comprises three interlocking orbs that look like bubbles rising from the waterline.
At this site, visit the EPIC museum shop on the ground floor.
The shop has a unique selection of gifts and souvenirs you can buy for yourself or someone special!
Collecting stamps with the EPIC museum logo is an exciting way to spend time at the EPIC Museum. You can purchase these stamps at EPIC’s gift shop. They are only 1 euro each.
You should also be sure to check out EPIC’s ‘Experience Ireland’ gallery and the virtual reality headsets. The headsets use computer-generated animation, motion sensors, and surround sound to simulate life on board an emigrant ship crossing to America.
Lastly, EPIC contains objects from National Museums Northern Ireland Collection, including items used by travellers forced to take shelter in Drogheda during storms or bad weather along their journey across the Atlantic Ocean.
Where to stay in Dublin?
Check in the laid-back modern setting with a host of local Irish delicacies. It’s 26% cheaper than most hotels but offers more perks than the typical 4-star hotels of its category. This hotel costs between 81.5 to 90.5 euros
Or stay in the airport hotel with unfussy rooms and contemporary restaurants. The Maldron Hotel Dublin Airport is an excellent place to stay while exploring Dublin because it shares proximity with places to see in Dublin.
Watch the World Open Up in front of you on the Wild Atlantic Road Trip DAY 4-6
The Wild Atlantic Way is a 2,500-mile scenic route that stretches from Northern Ireland to West Cork. It was ranked the world’s second-best road trip in 2017. The coastline is dotted with history and beauty.
You can explore all of this beauty in two days at the following locations:
Old Head of Kinsale, County Cork
The old head of Kinsale packs a broad view of the Atlantic ocean, which the headland extends into by 3 km.
A signature sign of this locale is the Old Head Signal Tower standing erect since 1805.
The signal tower makes for a great view and memorial garden dedicated to the Lusitania ship that sank on 7th May 1915.
Dursey Island, County Cork
The Dursey Island is a signatory discovery point on the Wild Atlantic Way. The Island stretches across 6.5km long and 1.5km wide. According to Viking lore, the name Dursey Island means Island of Bulls.
Buried across this island’s surface is a tragic story that follows The Battle of Kinsale, where 300 of the Island’s inhabitants were slaughtered. And another 1000 were attacked on a long winter march to join their relatives in Country Leitrim.
Skellig’s Islands, County Kerry
The Skellig Islands are on Bray Head, at the end of Valentia Island. Aside from the fact that the Skellig Islands is a UNESCO world heritage site, it is also the location of the movie Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
From the parking lot (it cost €2), you can take a hike across the island and tower area.
The views from the Tower are more stunning from the pinnacle. But keep a close eye on little children so they do not get too near the edge.
Where to stay at Skellig’s Island
Stay at this nicely decorated hotel with spacious rooms, large beds, and a spa.
Dromhall Hotel is highly recommended for residents of Killarney. Whether you’re exploring the Wild Atlantic Way with your family, as couples, or solo, the hotel has a fabulous bouquet of customised plans for you. And it costs Euros 89 nightly.
Cliffs of Moher, County Clare
What makes the Cliffs of Moher an attraction site in Ireland is the cliffs themselves. The ridges are entirely vertical with a sharp edge. When there is clear weather, you can see out to the Aran Islands in Galway Bay off the west coast of Ireland.
The cliffs extend for 8 kilometres (5 miles) and extend southwards from Doolin village in County Clare to Hag’s Head peninsula on the northern end of County Clare.
There’s also an admission charge for this attraction site in Ireland during peak season (April to October). Still, it is free otherwise at any time of year.
But don’t worry; you get your money’s worth! If you come down to see the cliffs without paying, you can still explore many other things.
Keem Strand, County Mayo
Keem Strand (or Keem Beach) is a sheltered beach on Achill Island located about 7.5 km west of the village of Keel.
What makes Keem Strand the desired site for tourism in Ireland is the beach itself.
Unlike much of the north and east coasts, the sand at the Keem Strand is a dark gold colour, as it consists of pure quartz, which was formed during the Ice Age when the glaciers that covered Ireland 20,000 years ago retreated.
Aside from the snorkelling sites and beautiful open-world view of the Keem Strand, other things you can do on the island include:
- Visiting the Achill Experience Centre
- Observing the animals at Achill Eco Park
There are also kelp baths, boat trips, and surfing is popular along this stretch of the coastline.
Downpatrick Head, County Mayo
Downpatrick Head is a huge tourist attraction. In addition, the area around Downpatrick Head is full of activities, recreation opportunities, and historical significance.
Tourism at Downpatrick Head started because of its location: it sits on one of Europe’s most westerly points.
Tourism here aims to make the most out of this aspect with pleasant sea views from cliffs like Dún Briste.
Exploring Downpatrick Head offers many recreational opportunities such as walking trails, cliff-top walks (with safety precautions), basking in the sun, or taking crazy climbs up rocks, just to name a few.
You’ll come across some of County Mayo’s rich history and culture in the area.
But it’s not always an easy task since there are no entrances, signage, or information boards here as this was all washed away in the past by strong ocean currents.
However, if you’re a fish-and-shipwreck enthusiast, you can flock along what now remains of this former fortress.
It is also a great spot to watch the seabirds that fly around freely from the clifftop.
Tourism at Downpatrick Head is an excellent place for everyone — from birdwatchers and hikers, walking enthusiasts to party animals looking for a good time after work or on their weekends off.
Malin Head, County Donegal
Malin Head is an exciting place for tourism as it allows both land and sea-bound visitors to come and appreciate the view. Malin Head Tourism has been going for years with a “unique Gaeltacht experience” available to those looking for something besides the traditional attraction sites in Ireland.
On Malin Head Island, you will enjoy the spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean and Donegal Bay. And also the best views of Ireland’s tallest mountain, Carrauntoohil, at 1,038m.
Suppose you’re looking for something more local.
In that case, you should consider taking a walk through the town of Malin Head, taking part in some traditional music sessions, or visiting one of the many pubs in this small but charming village.
If you want to go back in time, an old manor house called Straidbilly stands by itself on top of Malin Head– said to have been built about 350 years ago.
There are several myths related to this little building – one tells us that it was created as a shelter for pilgrims across the sea.
Where to stay around County Donegal?
The Redcastle Hotel is a top-rated accommodation around County Donegal. It costs £138.99 to enjoy a luxury experience at the hotel for two nights.
Radisson Blu Hotel is an alternative to Redcastle. It has many exciting perks like free wifi, a great breakfast, and is very close to the public park. The hotel costs £98.49 for one night.
Hike, Kayak, and Ride the best spots around the Ring of Kerry
One place that is almost always included in any travel itinerary for Ireland is The Ring Of Kerry.
The circular road that constitutes the Ring of Kerry begins and ends in Killarney, taking visitors past the Lakes of Killarney and all around the Iveragh Peninsula.
The best way to explore the Ring Of Kerry is by car. It takes around ten hours to drive from one side of The Ring of Kerry to the other.
A Ring of Kerry tour must be planned carefully so that all visitors have enough time to see everything on offer. A good place to start would be:
Visiting Killarney National Park
Killarney Park is the home to Muckross House and Muckross Abbey. These historical abbeys are located in some beautiful forest scenery.
Many tourists suggest that they should be visited on sunny days when there’s plenty of light coming through the window openings.
Visiting Killarney National Park is one of the fun things to do on your visit to The Ring of Kerry.
The Killarney National Park offers a wide array of hiking, cycling, and rock climbing activities.
It also has scenic walkways for people who are more interested in experiencing the beauty of nature rather than engaging in physical activity.
Killarney National Park offers a fantastic chance to view native Irish wildlife in their natural habitat.
The park consists of over 100,000 hectares of wildland, home to an abundance of outdoor activities like walking trails, cycling routes, and even golfing on some courses.
Horseback riding at Rossbeigh Beach
Rossbeigh Beach is one of Killarney’s finest beaches that boasts golden dunes and great amenities for visitors, such as toilet booths, parking spaces, a children’s playground, and plenty of room to accommodate tourists.
However, the beach does not allow dogs.
Kayaking at Derrynane Beach
Kayaking at Derrynane Beach is another exciting thing around the Ring of Kerry. It helps you get closer to the dolphins and whales.
Take a stand at the Ladies’ View
The Ladies View is a famous spot to visit on The Ring of Kerry. This accessible car-only viewpoint offers spectacular views over parts of The National Park, Gap Of Dunloe, and Moll’s Gap.
Picnic benches are placed throughout the site, so you can stop here for a quick rest before continuing to your destination.
Where to stay around The Ring of Kerry?
We have created a list of our top self-catering accommodations to make your stay in Kerry the best time.
- Park Place Apartments, Highstreet, Killarney, Co.Kerry – 1 Bed – Sleeps 2
This accommodation is located in the town centre. It offers easy access to Killarney’s eclectic pubs, restaurants, and shops while you are still only 500 meters from the World famous Killarney National Park.
- Dingle Glor Na Habhann Luxury Residence, Dingle, Co. Kerry
This luxury apartment is the perfect place for accommodation if you’re going with the family. It has eight bedrooms in two separated villas located on the edge of the fishing port of Dingle Town, Co. Kerry, Ireland.
Check here to find more affordable self-catering accommodations around the Ring of Kerry.
How much should you budget for a 7-day itinerary in Ireland?
It is difficult to state the exact figure as it varies according to the available services and other factors.
For example, if you decide to book a hostel or an average hotel, the cost per night is likely to be $30-40 while booking a four-star.
However, if you are travelling on a budget, $50 per day should be good enough for one person. In contrast, if you want a comfortable stay with all facilities available at your disposal, then $100 per day is not an unrealistic amount.
So, on average, you’re looking at around £750 for solo travel, £1800 for a couple, and about £3000 for a family of 4. Riding the bus ride is a great way to explore Ireland on a budget.
How much do hotels cost in Ireland for tourists?
The price of hotels in Ireland varies based on the number of nights you will spend and specific services. But on average, Ireland hotel rates start from $150 for one night and go up to $300 for a week. The hotels come in all categories, and luxury is not missing from the list.
A 7-day Ireland itinerary is the ideal package to embrace most of the fantastic experience Ireland has to offer. You will enjoy the most popular tourist attractions like the EPIC museum, St. Stephen’s Green, or Trinity College.
Seeing Ireland is an evergreen experience, especially if you enjoy time with your family.
If you are unsure when to plan your trip, maybe due to weather, budget, or work schedule, this blog is a perfect guide for you on the best months to see Ireland.