The West Coast of Ireland

Starting in the southwest corner of the Emerald Isle, you can tour the picturesque and compact countryside without a care in the world. The rolling hills and rocky Atlantic coast will accompany you through small towns and farms, but bring along some buddies too, since there are few (if any) real tours in the area. Thankfully though, with its fairly straightforward coastal paths, navigating the region shouldn't be a problem. From the town of Shannon in County Kerry (the southwestern corner of Ireland), you can virtually go anywhere up (or down) the coast, taking two or three weeks in the summer through meandering roads and charming towns. Stop in at the quaint bed and breakfasts to appreciate a truly Irish lifestyle and sample some local brew before heading out on your bike with the crashing ocean waves at your side. The various trips you can take range from 120 to 300 miles in length.

Must-see: Ride through the Dingle Peninsula, which has curving paths straight out of a true cyclist's dream. Link to Weather Back to activities

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