There is no doubt that Dublin is a beautiful, vibrant city, full of many things to see and do. However, many of Ireland’s most remarkable attractions are located outside of the capital. With Ireland being so accessible, it is possible to travel from Dublin to just about anywhere on the island in a matter of hours. This makes Clayton Hotel Liffey Valley the perfect base point for exploring the country. Here is a list of some of our favourite day trips from Dublin:
30 minutes drive from the hotel
Howth is a beautiful, picturesque seaside town situated just 30 minutes away from Clayton Hotel Liffey Valley. Breathe in the fresh sea air as you take on the stunning Howth Cliff Walk Loop with spectacular sea views along the way. Howth has many other attractions to see such as the beautiful Howth Castle and Gardens, Howth Lighthouse and St Mary’s Abbey Ruins. If you visit on the weekend you will get to enjoy the buzz of Howth Market, selling everything from street food to jewellery and antiques. Afterwards, treat yourself to some fresh fish and chips along Howth’s waterfront.
Wicklow sits just south of Dublin. Known as the ‘Garden of Ireland’ it’s easy to see why! The Wicklow Mountains are home to some breath-taking scenery, lakes, mountains and much more. There is also plenty of both easy and challenging hiking trails to enjoy in and around. Undoubtedly, the highlight of your trip will be Glendalough, a 6th-century monastic site nestled right in the heart of the Wicklow Mountains National Park. Here you will come across a 30-metre round tower, Glendalough Cathedral and many ancient churches and stones all surrounded by two glacial lakes.
Cliffs of Moher
One of the most popular tourist attractions in Ireland, the Cliffs of Moher run for 14 kilometres and rise 700 feet above the Atlantic Ocean. Although, located on the opposite side of the island, the Cliffs of Moher are still only a 3-hour drive away from Clayton Hotel Liffey Valley. Take in the astonishing views, have a walk along the trails and swing by the visitor centre to learn all about the history of the cliffs. Grab some lunch in one of the nearby towns and if you have some time to spare, don’t miss a trip to the Burren National Park.
Kilkenny is also known as ‘The Marble City’. A medieval city well known for its ancient Castle and Cathedral. The foundations of Kilkenny Castle go all the way back to the 13th century. After gazing at the very unique St Canice Cathedral and its stunning stained glass take a stroll along the winding Norman streets all lined with the very colourful cafes, bars, Irish gift shops and much more.
Northern Ireland is a lot closer to Dublin than you’d think! The city of Belfast is just a 2-hour car drive away from Clayton Hotel Liffey Valley, making it a perfect day trip destination. The Belfast skyline is populated with some impressive pieces of architecture such as the Leaning Albert Clock, St. Anne’s Cathedral and the City Hall. Take time to visit the world-famous Titanic Belfast Museum, the birthplace of the RMS Titanic. The Titanic Experience lets you in on the luxury of the Titanic ship while you learn about the history behind the world’s most famous ship. You’ll also find plenty of tours which take you behind the history of ‘The Troubles’ which divided the nation for decades.
A 3-hour journey from Dublin will get you to The Giant Causeway’s very unique hexagon landscape. It is one of the world’s most recognisable coastal landscapes and a true wonder of the world. This area consists of tons of basalt rock columns spanning over 6 kilometres along the Northern Ireland coast. Other big attractions nearby include the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge, a popular filming location appearing in different movies and shows such as the well-known Game of Thrones.
Blarney Castle is located in the second-largest city in Ireland – Cork. It is one of Ireland’s most famous castles. Blarney Castle is home to the famous Blarney Stone. Many visitors from all over the world travel to Blarney Castle to kiss the stone. Legend has it that if you kiss the stone you will get the ‘Gift of the Gab’, meaning you will have the talent of exceptional talking and persuasive abilities. The castle itself has some really wonderful and well-kept gardens including the unusual bog and poison gardens. If you’re not rushed for time, do add Cork City to your journey and take a stroll down Fitzferlad park or grab a coffee and explore the many stalls in The English Market.