Bold Spirit Travel Sample Itinerary

Duration: 7 Days / 6 Nights


Overview

Embark on an unforgettable hiking & cultural odyssey through the dramatic landscapes and rich cultural tapestry of Sligo, Westport, and Clifden on Ireland’s west coast. Ascend Knocknarea, where the mystical Queen Maeve’s tomb crowns the summit, offering breathtaking views of Sligo’s rolling green hills and the sparkling Atlantic beyond. Traverse the iconic pilgrimage site of Croagh Patrick, Ireland’s holy mountain, steeped in religious significance and providing panoramic vistas of Clew Bay.  Along the way, connect with locals, delving into their traditions and savouring local dishes that celebrate the unique flavours of each region. This journey intertwines epic hikes with authentic encounters, promising an immersive exploration of Ireland’s stunning landscapes and vibrant heritage.

Highlights

  • Visit a working shellfish farm for a tour & tasting
  • Hike the iconic Knocknarea & Croagh Patrick
  • Meet locals as you traverse Ireland's Wild Atlantic Way

Day by Day

Day 1 - Arrive in Sligo, Canoeing on Lough Gill

It’s easy to see how the windswept landscapes of Sligo captured the imagination of Irish national poet W.B. Yeats. Your guide will meet you at the train station in the town centre and together you will head to your hotel to check in. After lunch, adventure to a secluded spot for some canoeing. Glide along the Lough Gill’s shimmering surface, embraced by the stunning scenery of wooded shores, picturesque islands, and the mythical atmosphere that inspired W.B. Yeats. This evening, your guide will join you for a welcome dinner and briefing on the adventure to come.

Overnight: Sligo | The Riverside Hotel
Room Type: Classic
Meals Included: Lunch and Dinner

Day 2 - Knocknarea

This morning, your guide will make the short drive to the imposing Knocknarea mountain, which stands tall dominating the peninsula’s landscape. Legend has it that the Warrior Queen Maeve is buried atop, signified by a large 10-metre tall cairn visible from sea-level, as the mountain served as an important outpost during her reign over the western counties. Following your hike, head for lunch in the nearby Strandhill, a small seaside village neighbouring Sligo town and renowned for its world-class surfing. Back at your hotel, feel free to relax for the evening or stroll around the river.

Overnight: Sligo | The Riverside Hotel
Room Type: Classic
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch
Walk Details: 4 km / 2 miles

Day 3 - Sheepdog Demonstration & Westport

This morning you will get the opportunity to see an Irish farmer in action. The most recent Best Sheepdog Experience in Ireland award winner will introduce you to his dogs, who will demonstrate their herding skills with Sligo’s iconic landmarks of Benbulben’s ribbed mountainside as your backdrop. After a break for lunch, you’ll make your way to the market town of Westport. Westport lies at the edge of the Wild Nephin wilderness and on the shores of Clew Bay, known for the hundreds of tiny islands created by glaciers millennia ago. A bustling regional hub and host to some of Ireland’s most musical pubs, you can spend your evening exploring the colourful streets and fantastic shops and artisans

Overnight: Westport | Knockranny House Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 4 - Croagh Patrick

The pilgrimage up the rocky sides of Croagh Patrick is a tradition stretching back over 5,000 years from the Stone Age to the present day. Pilgrims gather annually in late July to climb to the summit barefoot in honour of St Patrick, who, according to legend, once fasted at its peak. Your hike today takes you along this ancient and significant pilgrimage route right up to the tiny white church at the summit. From there, you’ll take in a spectacular vista of Clew Bay, where it’s said there are 365 drumlin islands (one for each day of the year!). After the hike, head into Westport town to enjoy lovely cafes, pubs and shops.

Overnight: Westport | Knockranny House Hotel
Room Type: Deluxe
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch
Walk Details: 12 km / 7 miles

Day 5 - Connemara Shellfish Farm

The hills and mountains of Connemara are defined by the ocean surrounding, and this is particularly evident at the beautiful Killary Fjord. This morning you will visit a family run shellfish farm where you can head out onto the fjord, lift a string of mussels for hauling and harvesting and understand the lifecycle of these delicious shellfish. Afterwards, visit the stunningly beautiful Kylemore Abbey and Gardens to tour the grounds and hear the romantic story behind this iconic site. Your accommodation for the next two nights is in the heart of Connemara. Head into town this evening for a traditional music session in a local pub after a fantastic dinner of locally caught seafood.

Overnight: Clifden | The Ardagh
Room Type: Classic
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 6 - Inishbofin Island with an Archaeologist

This morning, grab a ferry to explore the ancient mysteries of Connemara with a local archaeoligist who will bring the landscape, traditions and mythology of the region alive. Our route takes us to a hauntingly beautiful island where you’ll hear tales of pirates and invasions. Be sure to taste some of the spectacular local seafood in an idyllic island pub. Once back on the mainland, settle into a tiny local pub and listen to some traditional Irish music. Your guide will join you tonight for a farewell dinner.

Overnight: Connemara | The Ardagh
Room Type: Classic
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 7 - Galway History Tour & Depart

In a country known mostly for its rural spaces, Galway is one of Ireland’s most beloved cities. But don’t take it from us – get the local perspective. Leaving Connemara behind this morning, enjoy a guided walking tour of Galway with a cheerful local as he points out the history, culture and architecture of this cheerful and vibrant town. You’ll finish up at Galway Train Station where you can begin your homeward journey.

Meals Included: Breakfast