Cycle the Wild Atlantic Way on €40 a day

One of the greatest pleasures of taking part in any cycling sportive, along with experiencing different roads and scenery is meeting new cyclists and listening to their stories.

Last Sunday as we rode along in the Bobby Power Commerative Cycle I began chatting to a former GAA man from Kilmacow who has swapped the hurley for the handlebars. As we spoke about everything and anything he mentioned having walked the Camino in Spain previously and then cycling the Wild Atlantic Way this summer. This casual statement needed further investigation.

The Wild Atlantic Way is 2500km long and follows the Atlantic coast of Ireland from Kinsale to Derry, or Derry to Kinsale if you fancy a prevailing headwind. It is a fully signposted route that offers any visitor some of the most spectacular scenery in the World. Cycling South to North also keeps you closer to that scenery.


Screenshot 2015-09-16 11.05.10


Having cycled much of the WAW in stages myself over the past year I was keen to hear more about the experience of cycling the entire route and my companion from Kilmacow did not disappoint.

He managed to cover the entire route in 15 days by cycling just over 160k per day. As he said, this may seem like a lot but when you give yourself all day to do it most cyclists with enough training could easily manage it.

Staying in mostly hostels and B&B’s along the way offered the opportunity to meet all types of people from all over the World. It is always amazing how many people travel from the other side of the World to experience what we take for granted on our doorstep.

His wife joined him for the final two days and they stayed in hotels.

The average daily cost whilst on his own was €40 per day for food and accommodation. That’s just €600 for the 15 days.

When you stop and think about it this man gave himself the experience of a lifetime and a holiday that he would be stronger and fitter from, saw some of the most spectacular sights in the World and all for the price of a weekend booze up in a Capital city.

He compared it favourably with the experience of walking the Camino de Santiago in Spain. Perhaps we have our very own Camino here at home.


If you’re looking for a holiday experience away from sunburn and swimming pools for next summer or if you crave a challenge that will leave you satisfied and invigorated for years afterwards, cycling the Wild Atlantic Way may just be it !

Explore what the Wild Atlantic Way route has to offer HERE


Read more about people who have cycled the WAW ;


Satu from Finland 


Mark Graham from Tramore recently journaled his fabulous experience cycling the WAW on a wooden bike for the Irish Independant here 





11 thoughts on “Cycle the Wild Atlantic Way on €40 a day

  • September 16, 2015 at 11:34 pm

    Had the fortune of being able to take my bike with me while working in west cork during the the summer,I got some memorable rides in on the WAW.worth every pedal stroke,encountered great acts of kindness from some wonderful people.

    • September 17, 2015 at 7:45 am

      I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there Mick. It’s the people that you meet along the way that make the place so memorable.

  • September 25, 2015 at 1:17 pm

    Barry, Audax Ireland are in the process of organising the WAW as an audax event next summer, probably June. Route will be around 2100km I think, they won’t follow the exact route with alterations to make it more bike friendly. First draft
    I’ll post again once it’s been confirmed

    • September 26, 2015 at 6:04 am

      That looks really interesting Michael. Look forward to finding out more.

  • August 13, 2016 at 10:53 am

    Hello Barry, I’m going to head onto the WAW in September, I’m just planning my trip. I have a few questions that I’d really appreciate your advice on:
    I’m hoping not to book accomodation and just turn up to hostels and b+b’s with the option of bivvying. Do you think this will work or would you pre-book all accomodation?
    I’ve never done a cycle tour before so I have no idea how far I can go per day so I’d rather have the freedom of travelling as far or as little as I like each day.
    I’m not aiming to manage the whole thing, just as much as I can, travelling from south to north. Would you start in Kinsale and just go north as far as you could? I could always go back another time and carry on (I have two weeks).
    Do I need a GPS? I gather it’s signposted but will probably take a Garmin too.
    Any top tips? Thanks for the blog! Jody

    • August 13, 2016 at 3:15 pm

      Hi Jody,
      You must be excited looking forward to your trip. September can be a great time to take on the WAW as the weather can often be quiet good at that time of year. As it is no longer peak season you will be safe to just arrive on without pre booking. The distance that you cover each day can vary with the wind. The prevailing wind is South westerly so hopefully it will be on your back. The route is well signposted although there are a number of spurs along the way that bring you out and back the same road to certain landmarks. It might be worth checking out beforehand which you might like to see and which you might choose to by pass. Essentially once you keep the sea on your left as close as possible you can’t go too far wrong. Kinsale is definitely the place to start and possibly aim for Galway or Clifden depending on how much ground you are covering each day. If you feel very fit you might make it even further. Services can be a little sparse between towns and villages in certain parts so be sure to have enough water and food with you on the bike. You will have a fantastic experience anyway. Enjoy,

  • August 25, 2016 at 9:22 pm

    My wife, myself and another couple are going to cycle on the WAW in October. We are in our mid 50’s and of average fitness. We were thinking of visiting the Aran Islands, as well. Would you start south of the Aran Islands and end there or start at the Aran Islands and go north? Which is more scenic better part of the WAW, if there is a better part. We are biking for 5 days.
    If we start at the Aran Islands we will probably start on the WAW in Rossaveel. If we end at the Aran Islands we will probably take the Doolin ferry.
    Any suggestions on bike rentals or anything else would be greatly appreciated.

  • November 1, 2016 at 9:23 am

    Hi Barry, I’m looking forward to cycling the WAW next May. I’m not giving myself any real time limit or distance to cover per day just going to see how I feel. I will be mostly camping though what are the chances of wild camping along the way.

  • February 1, 2017 at 10:38 pm

    I cycled the WAW last year in 19 days. Epic adventure, stunning scenery, great people, highly recommended.


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