I’ve been waiting for this trip for a very long time !!
The magical Cliffs of Moher day trip from Dublin is located on the west coast of Ireland, along the Wild Atlantic Way, are the iconic Cliffs of Moher. You may recognize the Cliffs of Moher from such films as The Princess Bride (1987) (as the filming location for “The Cliffs of Insanity”), Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009), and Leap Year (2010).
The breathtaking 8km cliff stretch got its name from Fort ‘Mothar.’ The fort was later destroyed in the Napoleonic war in the 1800s. Visiting this prestigious site on a clear day offers views of the Aran Islands, Galway Bay and City and Twelve Pins.
After a well-spent couple of days in Dublin (and sobering up), I wanted to take a day trip to see what else the stunning country has to offer?
During our bus ride to the Cliffs of Moher, our tour guide shared loads of information and stories about famous people, bands and folklore. So continue reading to get a glimpse into my unbelievable day trip experience of the Cliffs of Moher, from Ireland’s fictional history to almost getting seasick on a boat ride.
GETTING TO THE CLIFFS OF MOHER FROM DUBLIN
BEST CLIFFS OF MOHER TOURS FROM DUBLIN
Most tours will depart from Dublin, as the Cliffs are near Dublin (266km). When you book your tour, there will be a meeting point where you will be fetched by your bus or tour guide.
Because the Cliffs of Moher, Ireland are such a popular attraction, there is no shortage of times and options that you can choose. For example, you can experience these lush, green, 700 feet tall cliffs from the comfort of a vehicle or tour bus. Or, float down the wavy Atlantic Ocean on a boat tour.
Be advised; the Irish seas can be turbulent and make the boat rock. If you’re prone to seasickness like I am, maybe opt to explore the cliffs from above rather than below. More on that below.
Anyways, for those who want to take on the Ireland Cliffs first hand, you can enjoy a walk along the stretch of cliffs. Enjoy breathing in the cold, fresh air while taking in the infinite beauty, fauna and flora of Ireland. I did this as well. Much better than the boat option. Don’t forget to pack a picnic in your travel backpack, as there are plenty of great lunch stops along the way.
The Cliffs tickets are £4,50 per adult and kids for free. Some tours will offer entrance to the park as well as entrance to other attractions along the way. Be sure to check and see what your day trip tour provides.
If you visit the Cliffs of Moher from elsewhere in Europe or Ireland, RyanAir Airlines has some great flights to and around Ireland. RyanAir can get you to Dublin from most major cities around Europe.
If you are driving yourself from Dublin to Cliffs of Moher, it will take about 3 hours. The most direct route is through Galway on the M6.
THINGS TO SEE ALONG THE WAY – EN ROUTE
While the Cliffs of Moher tour is an excellent excursion itself, part of the fun was listening to our tour guide share stories about famous people from Ireland and tales of mystical creatures. To make the most of your day trip, it’s worth stopping at some of the other attractions along the way.
LANDMARKS OF U2 IN DUBLIN
On a sightseeing tour in Dublin, you can see the East Link Bridge, Grand Canal Docks and the old U2 Tower site. U2 fans may recognize these attractions as the album cover art from October and their Greatest Hits album.
The legacy of U2 fills the air of Dublin. Along your Cliffs of Moher day trip, you can stop to see some of the remarkable landmarks that represent U2 and all their greatness.
VISIT BARACK OBAMA PLAZA
If you take the M7 highway from Dublin to the Cliffs of Moher, you can stop at the legendary Barack Obama Plaza that opened in 2014. This attraction is a great place to rest along your journey and maybe grab some food and gas.
The site is a bizarre-themed gas station with all sorts of merchandise in honour of Obama. Here you can buy branded rugs and trash cans as well as explore the free museum-like building.
THE CRANBERRIES TOWN OF LIMERICK
Also, on the M7 to the Cliffs of Moher, you will pass through the town of Limerick. Limerick is famous for being the place where the iconic, Cranberries band was formed. The alternative Irish rock band was popular in the 1990s, achieving international fame.
In the town, you can visit popular restaurants and cafés where the Cranberries played. They performed gigs at The Flag Cafe, Broad Street, Ruby’s Nightclub and Stables Bar. My all-time favourite Cranberries song: “Zombie”
THE CLIFFS OF MOHER
THE TOWN OF DOOLIN
Stop at Doolin to be in the heart of traditional Irish music. This famous town is known for its lively pubs as well as its many archaeological sites. While you’re visiting, it’s worth going to see the two castles in the area, Doonagore Castle and Ballinalacken Castle.
CLIFFS OF MOHER BOAT TOUR – DOOLIN FERRY COMPANY
As part of the cost of my tour bus ticket, a quick boat ride with Doolin Ferry Company was included. Tour bus riders were given the option to either hang out in Doolin or go see the Cliffs Of Moher from below. I immediately thought about that scene from Harry Potter and thought this would be cool. As I mentioned off the top, while the perspective is cool I must stress that the waters were extremely rough.
It was first fun; it felt like a rollercoaster—huge waves and water pouring into the deck. Then I noticed this lady who could not stay out of the washroom and a bunch of people holding paper bags in the cabin. Suddenly, it hit me, and my stomach started churning—a unique perspective but not fun at all.
FOLKTALES OF THE CLIFFS OF MOHER
Besides the stunning cliff views, Moher has numerous stories of supernatural creatures that have been around for centuries. Our tour launched into several stories about fairies, banshees and even leprechauns as we headed back to Dublin.
IRISH FAIRIES AND THE REROUTED HIGHWAY
It’s believed that Ireland’s Fairies are so powerful, they redirected the highway. The native tale says that these folk live in the hills, tombs, seas, lakes and distant islands of Ireland.
These fairies are famous for the Fairy tree that rerouted the highways. The Hawthorn Tree sits in the middle of the M18, between Galway and Limerick. Since the tree grew so big, the Irish had to build the road around it: Or face the consequences which include terrible luck, never getting a good night’s sleep and possibly meeting an unfortunate end.
Clearly, fairies are not as pleasant as they are over at Disney.
IRELAND’S BANSHEES AND THEIR LEGENDS
Banshees sit on the darker side of Irish history. These Gaelic folk are said to be the ‘women of the fairies’ that give off mournful screams at night. It’s believed these screams predict the death of the Irish family member who heard them.
THE LUCKY IRISH LEPRECHAUNS
Leprechauns are mythical creatures that have been embedded into Ireland’s history for centuries. The leprechaun is a symbol of liveliness and luck. These little folk can be fierce even though their names translate into a simple shoemaker.
Leprechauns wear unique green hats on top of their reddish hair. They are constantly blushed and live freely and greedily and are untamable.
FINAL COMMENTS ON IRELAND CLIFFS OF MOHER DAY TOURS
The Ireland Cliffs of Moher Tour offer more than just spectacular views on Galway Bay, vast ocean and islands beyond. Taking a Cliff of Moher day trip lets you experience so much more of Ireland than just its alluring cliffs.
Visit some of Ireland’s most famous sites during your Dublin to Cliffs of Moher Tour and walk through history with some great legends.