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ROAD TRIP DESTINATIONS



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In the summer of 2015, a group of Porsche drivers excitedly took on the scenic road trip of their lives - Ireland’s stunning Wild Atlantic Way.

Keen to embark on a unique new adventure, a fleet of 38 Porsche enthusiasts set off on an epic journey through the thrilling twists and turns that make up Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way. This winding and picturesque road – said to be the world’s longest continuous driving route – is the ultimate road trip destination, running the entire length of Ireland’s rugged west coast.

The trail offers up stunning scenery, from soaring cliff-tops and golden beaches to jutting headlands and of course, the wild and crashing Atlantic Ocean, which over the years has shaped the area’s jagged and alluring coastline, providing unmissable destinations all along its length. 

 
 

Starting the Porsche tour at Malin Head
Malin Head

The troupe set off from the headland of Malin Head (Ireland’s most northerly tip) in the mountainous county of Donegal, and gradually made their way south, finishing up seven days later in the charming sailing port of Kinsale in the south-west. And there were plenty of stop-offs in-between! In magical Donegal, the drivers visited the majestic Grianán of Áileach fort; thought to be the seat of the area’s ancient ruling kings. From its top, it’s said that (on a clear day) visitors can see as far as five counties. Equally impressive were Donegal’s Slieve League Cliffs; some of the highest sea cliffs in Europe and another stop on the team’s jam-packed itinerary. 

Classic Porsche driving on the Wild Atlantic Way

Taking in the lush countryside, the drivers (even those who live in Ireland!) were amazed by the panoramic views around every corner. Nowhere was this more evident than in County Mayo, home to a whole host of gorgeous inlets, coves and islands, and Porsche drivers were amazed when the team drove over Achill Head; Ireland’s largest island, and down around Keem; its golden stretch of blue-flag beach.
 
En route to Achill, the team had stopped for lunch in Mullaghmore; a small fishing village with a fantastic sandy beach; perfect for those seeking a spot of outdoor adventure. Its home county Sligo draws surfers from all around the world, and thrill-seekers will be delighted to hear that Mullaghmore ‘Prowlers’ (the name given to the area’s crashing waves) have been known to reach a dizzying height of 30m! Later, as the team continued their journey south, they paused to gaze up at the breathtaking Cliffs of Moher in County Clare. Ireland’s most visited natural attraction stretches for 8km and reaches an astonishing 214m at their highest point. Clare is also home to the Burren, a unique and otherworldly stretch of stark, limestone landscape that boasts over 1,100 species of plant. Nature lovers will delight in this unusual terrain, which has been designated as a Special Area of Conservation; a title reserved for Europe’s very best natural environments.  

Stunning sunset on Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way
Cliffs of Moher

“The Wild Atlantic Way shows you every challenge of driving, but in the most beautiful countryside you could ever come across”, reflects Mel Nolan, a former world speed champion and Wild Atlantic Way native (he hails from Cork, Ireland’s largest county, in the south).
 
His highlight? Neighbouring Kerry; home of Ireland’s highest peak, Carrauntoohill. This stunning county’s soaring mountain ranges, gorgeous lakes and winding peninsulas are a must-see for anyone exploring the Wild Atlantic Way. “The Slea Head route brings you around the real end of Kerry”, explains Mel. “The next stop is America! Just off the coast are the rocky Blasket Islands, and you’ve got the ocean crashing on the rocks; it’s fantastic.”
 
Kerry is also home to an unforgettably scenic road trip viewing point of the ancient Skellig islands, a UNESCO World Heritage site. The drivers paused on the Conor Pass, an incredibly picturesque winding trail set in the stunning Dingle Peninsula. From there, they were able to see Skellig Michael; a former medieval monastery and remote hermitage that juts dramatically out of the wild Atlantic. 

Exploring Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way in a Porsche

The drivers were also delighted by the many charming towns and villages that dot this breathtaking route; Dunfanahy, Bangor Erris, Salthill and Kilrush, to name but a few. There they enjoyed the hospitality, music and lively banter for which this region is famous. Indeed, there’s plenty of adventure to be had along the Wild Atlantic Way after the sun sets. From star gazing in Kerry (a renowned international dark-sky reserve) to kayaking under the stars or enjoying an evening of good old-fashioned storytelling and music, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. 
 
Fancy embarking on your own exhilarating adventure and need some perfect road trip ideas? Whether you’d like to explore the west coast’s entire length like the Porsche crew, or would prefer to break it into sections, there’s a unique Wild Atlantic Way getaway for you. So what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip today!

 

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