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Beautiful Ireland: Our top scenic spots

From the Ring of Kerry to the Giant's Causeway, Ireland's scenery will amaze you

Cliffs of Moher

With lush sweeping mountains, ancient stone walls, romantic castle ruins, and picture-perfect villages, there’s no shortage of gorgeous scenery in Ireland. We think it’s one of the best places in the world to sightsee – Ireland’s emerald-tinted beauty is simply extraordinary. Let’s take a look at a few of our favorite spots!

Cliffs of Moher

If you’re looking for the perfect spot for your souvenir selfie, it would be hard to find a better backdrop than the sweeping Cliffs of Moher. This is no ordinary sight: nine miles long, and soaring 700 feet above the Atlantic, the Cliffs among Ireland’s most recognizable landmarks. They’ve been a draw for visitors since the 18th century, and if you’re a movie fan, they’ll be familiar to you. They were the filming location for “The Cliffs of Insanity” in The Princess Bride, a Harry Potter scene was filmed in a cave at the base, and they feature in the Irish classic “Into the West”. Most CIE Tours vacations in Ireland visit the Cliffs of Moher, so there’s no shortage of opportunities to see these beloved formations.

Slieve League Cliffs

While the Cliffs of Moher may be the most famous cliffs in Ireland, they’re not the largest. That accolade belongs to Slieve League in Donegal – they’re actually the largest sea cliffs in all of Europe, towering 2,000 feet above the Atlantic at their highest point. What could be better than to be surrounded by the awesome beauty of the dramatic landscape around you, the roaring ocean below, and the seabirds flying overhead?  Well, on the Irish Explorer tour with CIE Tours, you’ll experience the scenic splendor with a cup of creamy Irish coffee to warm and revive you.

Glendalough

If historic ruins inspire you, there’s no better spot than Glendalough. This old settlement nestled in the splendor of the Wicklow Mountains is what’s left of a sixth-century monastery. Founded by St Kevin, the monastery flourished as a center of learning for hundreds of years, despite numerous sackings by Vikings. As you walk among the picturesque ruins, you’ll see a distinctive 30-foot round tower, churches dating to the 10th century, and one of Ireland’s oldest Celtic crosses. Just imagine the many medieval monks who once lived here, producing beautifully illustrated manuscripts in Irish and Latin – these monks would preserve much of Europe’s knowledge of religion, astronomy, and mathematics during the Dark Ages. You can visit Glendalough on our Irish Spirit, Irish Adventure, Irish Heritage tours.

Ring of Kerry

The Ring of Kerry is Ireland’s best-known scenic drive. It’s a winding coastal road showcasing rugged mountains, sandy beaches, ancient ring forts, and enchanting villages. The 110-mile route circles the Iveragh Peninsula in the island’s southwest, with Killarney as the usual starting point. The drive takes about 3.5 hours without stopping, but there’s much to make pausing worthwhile.  One of the Ring’s most scenic viewpoints is named “Ladies’ View”, the name commemorating the visit by Queen Victoria and her ladies-in-waiting in 1861.  Other sights along the way include Skellig Michael, the small rocky outcrop, visible offshore, where monks once lived and Star Wars was filmed. Many of our Irish tours drive the Ring of Kerry, including Taste of Ireland and Irish Heritage. 

Giant's Causeway

What do you get when you combine spectacular natural formation with a little bit of fantastic folklore? The Giant’s Causeway in County Antrim -  a delight for both scenery-hunters and lovers of a good story. Science tells us that this natural wonder of 40,000 interlocking basalt columns sweeping into the sea was created by ancient lava flows. Legend says a giant, Finn MacCool, built it as a path to reach a Scottish rival, Benandonner, across the North Channel. Finn is the victor in the battle through physical prowess in one version of the tale – but in another, Finn outwits Benandonner: when he realizes that the Scottish giant is much larger than he is, he cleverly asks his wife to disguise him as a baby. When Bennandonner sees the size of his rival’s “baby”, he takes fright – and runs back to Scotland, destroying the causeway behind him. See the Giant's Causeway on many of our tours, including Irish & Scottish Sampler, Jewels of Ireland, and Irish Classic. 

CIE Tours can bring you to Giant's Causeway and all these scenic spots across Ireland - plus so much more!

All our Irish itineraries are available as guided vacations or as Independent Adventures - either self-drive or with your own driver. CIE Tours can also take you to Scotland, England,  Wales, Iceland, and Italy! Explore our website for more. 

Ireland Tours

Showing 12 of 12 total

Taste of Ireland

Starting from $1130

4.7
5/7 Days

This fast-paced, short-and-sweet Ireland tour is the perfect introduction to the Emerald Isle. Taste of Ireland hits all of the "greatest hits" highlights—from Blarney Castle to the Cliffs of…

​Guided Tours, Guided Small Groups, Independent Adventures

Irish Heritage

Starting from $1995

4.9
7/8 Days

See all the highlights on this classic tour - and on our 8-day option, luxuriate in a stay at the elegant, five-star Dromoland Castle Hotel.

​Guided Tours, Guided Small Groups, Independent Adventures

Irish Spirit

Starting from $1645

4.8
8/9 Days

This leisurely Irish tour covers the spectacular scenery of the countryside and seaside, with plenty of stops in the Emerald Isle's vibrant towns to stop and explore.

​Guided Tours, Guided Small Groups, Independent Adventures

Irish Adventure

Starting from $1650

4.8
8/9 Days

Make the most of every moment of your Ireland vacation—you'll discover all the can't-miss Irish scenery and history on this fast-paced tour.

​Guided Tours, Guided Small Groups, Independent Adventures

Irish Explorer

Starting from $1955

4.7
9/10 Days

Adventure through the most spectacular parts of Ireland, from emerald green farms to seaside cliffs and vibrant towns. 

​Guided Tours, Guided Small Groups, Independent Adventures

Irish Classic

Starting from $2895

4.8
13 Days

Skirt along the entire rugged coastline to see the highlights on this Ireland tour. 

​Guided Tours, Guided Small Groups, Independent Adventures

Jewels of Ireland

Starting from $3285

4.9
14/15 Days

Enjoy the splendor of every corner on this leisurely Ireland tour of the essential—and the unexpected.

​Guided Tours, Guided Small Groups, Independent Adventures

Irish & Scottish Sampler

Starting from $2345

4.6
8/9 Days

This short-and-sweet combination Ireland and Scotland tour visits all the top highlights, mixing in historic cities with iconic sights.

​Guided Tours, Guided Small Groups

Taste of Ireland Self-Drive

Starting from $1245

7 Days

This fast-paced, short-and-sweet Ireland tour features top Irish highlights: the Ring of Kerry, Blarney Castle, the Cliffs of Moher, and a medieval castle banquet. Stay in Dublin, Killarney and…

Independent Adventures

Irish Classic with Driver

Starting from $7095

13 Days

Skirt along the entire rugged coastline as your specialist driver/guide shows you all the highlights. See the Giant’s Causeway, Donegal, Westport House, the Cliffs of Moher, Dingle, Waterford, and…

Independent Adventures

Irish Heritage & Dromoland Castle with Driver

Starting from $5150

8 Days

Relax as you travel from Limerick to Killarney, Waterford, Dublin and back. Your dedicated driver/guide will show you all the sights and regale you with history and lore. Finish this classic tour…

Independent Adventures

Jewels of Ireland Self-Drive

Starting from $2735

15 Days

Soak in the splendor of the expanse of Ireland, with overnight stays in two of its most charming towns, Kinsale and Dingle. Visit the Burren, Donegal Castle, Europe’s highest cliffs at Slieve …

Independent Adventures

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