Giants Causeway - Drive Ireland

Still wondering what to do with the family over summer? A road trip is the perfect family getaway, giving you the freedom and opportunity to stop and discover whatever takes your fancy along the way. Below are our favourite family-friendly routes to inspire any family adventures this summer.

1 Bay Coast


The Bay Coast offers some of the most amazing rugged landscapes along the Wild Atlantic Way. This four-day road trip route takes you from Belmullet to Galway City with amazing stops along the way, where you can play water-sports in Achill Island or go dolphin watching in Clifden.

Ballynahinch Castle in Connemara, previously listed in our 8 Epic Hotel Locations, is the ideal spot for a break to stretch your legs.

2 Northern Headlands

Visit the most northerly point of Ireland, Malin Head, along the Northern Headlands route. This three-day route is popular with families who want to explore the amazing scenery of Rathmullan, a beautiful village with a beach and quaint pubs. There is also an option to visit Donegal Town, which is filled with shops, great restaurants and family-friendly hotels.

3 Historic Heartlands

Rock of Cashel -

It may be a long way to Tipperary, depending on where you begin their journey. The smallest county in Ireland, Carlow makes a great starting point for a mini road trip. Stop off at the famous Rock of Cashel en route and embrace the magical panoramic views of Tipperary.

Find the latest hotel deals in Tipperary and start planning this special family adventure.

4 Celtic Coast

Waterford - Celtic Coast

A great experience for the whole family, this three-day Celtic Coast route takes you through the counties of Wicklow, Wexford, Waterford and Cork. Hook Lighthouse is a must-see site along the way that has been in place for over 800 years and was recently named as one of our 10 Reasons to Visit Wexford.

5 Causeway Coastal Route


The Causeway Coastal Route offers so much for families of all ages. Whether you are discovering the legend of Finn Mac Cool at the Giant’s Causeway, getting your picture taken at the Dark Hedges or exploring the Walled City of Derry, there is plenty to fill up at least a few days away. The area also has a selection of excellent restaurants looking out over the ocean.

Take a look at our guide to Portstewart if you’re looking for somewhere to stop off during your road trip.

Find the latest hotel deals along the Antrim Coast and make the most of your time in the area.

6 Surf Coast

Surfing Bundoran -

Whether you are a keen surfer or just fancy having a go at the popular sport, the Surf Coast route offers something for the whole family. This two-day route takes you through top surfing beaches like Bundoran and Strandhill, but you could easily extend your trip and spend a few days enjoying the foodie experiences of Sligo. Our Foodie Guide to Sligo will direct you to some of the best food experiences in the area.

Check out the latest hotel deals in Sligo and get packing those wet-suits!

7 Ireland’s Ancient East

The Land of 5000 Dawns route will take you on an adventure through the middle of Ireland as you visit some of the country’s most historic spots. Make sure to stop off at Carlingford’s Leprechaun and Fairy Underground Cavern, a magical place to spend an hour with the kids listening to stories from the Leprechaun Whisperer himself.

Read about other great stops along Ireland’s Ancient East and find the latest hotel deals in specific areas.


Find more family road trip ideas with Drive Ireland.

Images via Fáilte Ireland


Have you experienced any other great road trips around Ireland?

Share your favourite family road trips in Ireland in the comment section below.


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