General FAQ

Are we accompanied by a guide?

Although the guide will not be cycling with you, he or she will be driving the support van and will make a sweep to ensure that all is well, and offer lifts to those who want a break. If at any point you need to contact the guide, you will have the telephone numbers of the guest houses where you will be able to leave a message.

This provides a sense of freedom in that you can travel at your own pace in the security that the guide is there for you in the event that you might need them. The guide will recommend places to eat and try to find out where the best entertainment is each night.

Most importantly, the guide sets the right tone, to make you feel welcome to the country and to help you in whatever way possible so that each day you are free to leave your worries behind.

Do we have to carry our own luggage?

No, your luggage is carried in the support van to your next hotel or guest house.

What will the weather be like?

Because we are an island located near the gulf stream, Ireland has a very mild climate making it ideal for cycling.

Although there are occasionally wet days, the rain never usually lasts very long and you are soon free to enjoy a clear view of the magnificent scenery once again. The temperature range during the summer is between 15 and 22 degrees centigrade (60 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit).

Do I have to be super - fit?

Other than young children, whom we discourage from attending, people of all ages and abilities come on the tours, so do not worry if you are not super-fit. You have all day to cover the recommended route, and while Irish roads rarely follow a straight line, there are few really high climbs.

Sore bottoms are an occupational hazard on a cycling tour, but a pair of padded cycle shorts or a gel saddle cover can work wonders. Complete beginners might also take a few practice rides before coming on the tour.

What bikes do we get?

We are using Giant city bikes for our tours. Every year we purchase new bikes to guarantee the highest standard. The bikes come in lady's - and gent frames with a size range from XS to XL ( Gents model ) ( Ladies model )

What kind of accommodation should I expect?

We stay in a combination of small family run hotels and guest houses. The standard of such accommodation in Ireland is very high, with having en-suite bathroom and other excellent facilities. We try to pick places with character; your home for the week can vary from a Victorian townhouse, a remote lakeside hotel, a farmhouse by the sea, an attractive harbour guesthouse, or an old style family hotel in the middle of a bustling market town.

Breakfasts are included each morning, which in many cases will keep you going for the day! Our rooms are allocated on a twin-sharing basis. Unfortunately, we are very limited in our ability to provide single rooms. Please contact us in the office to request a single room if needed.

Fortunately, the days when Irish vegetables are cooked for an entire week are long gone. Most people are very impressed at the quality of new Irish cooking. While people are free to do their own thing in the evening, our guide will recommend a place for lunch and dinner each day that will hopefully cater to everyone's taste and budget.

1 dinner is included on our 7-night group and self led tours
(please note that dinner is not included on Wicklow 7 night self guided tour)

What should I bring?

As we transfer the luggage each day, you are free to bring a ballgown and tuxedo should you wish to. However, we find that more experienced travellers arrive with one compact piece of luggage, and look on with amusement at those who have to drag their kitchen sink along airport corridors.

Do bring a comfortable outfit for the cycling, and a pair of padded cycling shorts if you have them. We keep a limited stock of cycling helmets in our van, but you are advised to bring your own, which should be more comfortable.

Where do we meet, and how do we get to our safari?

We are happy to advise you on any travel arrangements into and around Ireland, and about additional accommodation or other services. Each of our safaris starts close to bus and railway stations, so they are all accessible by public transport. While we encourage you to give your car a holiday for the tour, we can help to arrange parking for those who have to arrive on four wheels. On booking, we can send you more specific information on the travel arrangements to and from each starting point.

Each safari starts on a Saturday evening at 6.30pm, and finishes the following Saturday morning. Although most the tours finish where you start, some are a little different: check with each tour. Our office can usually make separate arrangements for those arriving late or having to leave early.

What degree of difficulty can I expect on the tour?

We grade both Irish and European tours as follows:
A – leisurely cycles – although no tours are completely flat, these tours have few hills and are ideal for those who enjoy gentle exercise and who cycle only occasionally.
B – moderate cycle: these tours are perfect for those who are not put off by undulating terrain and someone who cycles quite regularly.
C – challenging cycles – to get the most out of these cycles it is advised that you are a regular cyclist, relatively fit and enjoy the views heading up hills as well as down them.

What is the minimum group size required for a guided tour?

The group size varies from 10 pax to a maximum of 20 pax.

What happens if a group tour hasn't reached the minimum number of participants?

If we don't have enough people to run our group tour as guided tour (minimum is 10 pax) we offer you to do this tour on a self led basis instead. Often, there will be some other cyclists who are doing this tour the same time with you.
The luggage will still be transfered to each accommodation and you can always contact us if you are in need of assistance or if you can not cycle one day. And we will arrange a tranfser for you.
In some cases its also possible to switch to a different irish group tour on the same date.
If those two options don't suit we will, of course, refund you the tour costs.

Walking FAQ

What should i bring with me?

The following items are listed to assist your preparations for your holiday. Items such as woollen hats and gloves are included as cold weather can occur at any time of year, however it is not expected that you will need them in July and August.

Essential items:

  • Good boots, which are waterproof
  • Thick woollen socks
  • Waterproof jacket & overtrousers
  • Fleece/pile jacket (or similar)
  • Warm hat and gloves
  • Trousers / track suit bottoms / breeches (not denim jeans - these become very cold and heavy when wet and do not dry)
  • Waterproof map case
  • Daypack / rucksack
  • Lunch box
  • Vacuum flask
  • Waterbottle
  • Sun hat, suncream and Lipsalve
  • Personal first aid kit for blisters, etc.
  • Insect repellent
  • Mobile phone for emergency calls

Optional Items:

  • Walking stick/pole
  • Shorts
  • Gaiters (fit over the boot and lower)
  • Camera
  • Binoculars
  • Swim wear
  • Book or reading material
  • Compass

What footwear should I use?

The importance of good footwear cannot be over stressed. You should not walk in sports training/running shoes. Trails in Ireland are subjected to frequent rainfall and after rainy spells they often become wet and muddy. Once your boots are wet it is unlikely you will be able to dry them before the following day, so investing in waterproof boots will make you more comfortable. Good strong ankle high walking boots will support the ankle and provide invaluable protection on uneven ground. It is not a good idea to wear new boots on a walking holiday, as blisters are often a problem if boots are not worn in.

What about waterproofs?

If you are caught in a downpour with good waterproofs, you will remain dry. Unfortunately, many clients are unaware of the poor performance of their coats until it is too late. Few waterproofs remain waterproof for more than five years, with many deteriorating in three years or less.

Is lunch provided on the tours?

A picnic lunch is provided on most walking days. Your lunch will normally comprise of sandwiches, a chocolate bar or piece of cake, and a piece of fruit. If you bring a thermos flask, this will be filled with tea or coffee. You should bring a water bottle for drinks during the day. You will be able to buy additional snacks and drinks from local shops for during your walk.

Will I need a walking stick for the tour?

These have become increasingly popular as a walking aid for walkers of all ages and abilities. They do help enormously when crossing rough ground and streams, they also assist progress when going up and down hills.

What sort of accommodation will be provided?

The accommodation is allocated on a twin sharing basis. We stay in bed & breakfast accommodation, where we hope to fuse the best standard we can get with the warmest welcome. We ensure en suite facilities almost all of the time however in some of the more remote spots one might occasionally have to share a bathroom.

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