How to Take an Epic Running Holiday in Ireland

It’s easy to see why running in Ireland captures the imagination of so many runners. The sheer, natural beauty of its seaside cliffs, the verdant rolling hills, and the charming towns with as many great pubs as inviting people. What better place to train and travel than a running vacation in Ireland?

Still, Ireland is big, and finding the right Ireland running holiday isn’t an easy feat. So, how can you find the right running trip that’ll take you the sights you want to see, while also still letting you enjoy all of Ireland’s other great qualities?

We’re here to help. As runners ourselves who have lived and traveled throughout Europe, we know the importance of finding that balance between a good morning running and a relaxing afternoon exploring! 

Below we’ve highlighted four of the best Ireland running holidays that combine the must-see spots and must-run trails throughout the country. 

Why Ireland Makes for an Epic Running Vacation

Ireland running holidays are an amazing way to trail run through beautiful countryside.
Rogue Expeditions
  1. It’s a trail runner’s dream.

Home to some of the highest sea cliffs in Europe and some of the most rugged trails, as well as Ireland’s highest mountain, Carrauntoohil, which tops out at over 1,000 meters, Ireland is a dream for trail runners looking to test themselves in a new environment.

  1. The environment is primed to wow.

Ireland is great for runners and even better for explorers. With ancient Irish castles, world-class beer and whisky makers, and Irish delicacies like colcannon, seafood pie, and Irish stew, there’s as much to see, eat, and drink as there are beautiful trails to run.

3. The environment is primed to wow.

The Wild Atlantic Way is a 2,400km route (nearly 1,500 miles) that goes along the west coast of Ireland. With over 150 viewpoints, it’s easy to see how one could dedicate an entire trip just to running here. A perennial favorite? The Cliffs of Moher, the dramatic cliffs that are in many films and series, have found a home on many runners’ bucket lists of running travel destinations.

What It Costs to Take a Running Holiday in Ireland

All-inclusive run retreats in Ireland last between seven and eight days and cost between $4,200 and $5,100.

Run retreats of similar lengths in the United States can cost $2,000-4,000 for a week. 

The Best Classic Running Holidays In Ireland 

Rogue Expeditions Run Ireland takes you through classic Irish views.
Unsplash, Elias Ehmann

Tap into the Ireland you’ve been dreaming about with this Rogue Expeditions’ Run Ireland. From castles and pubs to green hills and sheer cliff faces, this classic route crisscrosses Ireland and gives you a wild, run-forward adventure.

Where this Ireland running vacation takes you:

  • Dublin 
  • Connemara
  • The Cliffs of Moher
  • Dingle Peninsula
  • County Kerry

We love all excursions Rouge Expeditions puts on, and the Ireland itinerary is sure to not disappoint.

The Best Women-Only Running Retreat In Ireland

Who says daily runs of 1-3 hours can’t also be relaxing? This guided, women-only running tour of Ireland by Run Wild Retreats features the best of both worlds. 

You’ll enjoy challenging runs that reveal captivating lakes and stunning cliffs as well as a lively and laid-back adventure throughout the Irish countryside. This tour blends mindful running and magnificent Irish landscapes.

Where this run retreat in Ireland takes you:

  • Start in Dublin
  • County Wicklow
  • Upper Glendalough Lake
  • Wicklow Way 
  • Djouce Mountain
  • Spinc Trail
  • Poulnass Waterfall
  • Cliffs of Moher
  • Black Valley
  • Killarney National Park 
  • Torc Waterfall
  • Muckross Abbey

The Best Adventure-Packed Running Holiday Ireland

If you’re looking to pack your time in Ireland with as much running as revelry, this Vacation Races Ireland Global Adventure could be for you.

In addition to time spent on the Wild Atlantic Way, runners can expect whiskey tastings, dancing, falconry, archery, shooting, and more in the Emerald Isle over the course of eight days.

Where you’ll run in Ireland:

  • Start in Dublin at Howth Cliffs
  • Ballina
  • Carrowteige
  • Achill Island
  • Clare Island
  • Famine Trail
  • Galway
  • The Cliffs of Moher

The Best Off-The-Beaten Path Running Holiday Ireland

Rogue Expeditions Hidden Northwest Ireland running trip shows you hidden gems along the coast.
Rogue Expeditions

For as beautiful and untamed as much of Ireland is, its most celebrated trails are well-known. If you’re looking to see a side of Ireland that few runners and travelers have tried before, look over Rogue Expeditions’ Hidden Northwest Ireland running trip.

While you’ll still see parts of the Wild Atlantic Way, you’ll add on dramatic new sights, too, like the underground wonders of the Marble Arch Caves Geopark and the wide-open beaches of Sligo.

Where you’ll run in Ireland:

  • Start in Dublin
  • Head cross country to the Wild Atlantic Way
  • The surf coast of Sligo
  • County Fermanagh’s Marble Arch Caves Geopark
  • County Donegal

Best Single-Day Run Training In Ireland

Already got your Ireland itinerary planned? 

If you do find yourself with an extra day while you’re in Dublin, Go Running Tours has a number of routes that help you get to the Irish capital while also keeping the miles up.

Here are a few of our favorites:

  • The Dublin City Highlights – 9km – See Temple Bar, the Georgian quarters and the Liberties as you jog down Dublin’s cobbled streets
  • Dublin By The Sea – 8km – Head out from the capital to the coastline, the Victorian pier of Dun Laoghaire, Martello Tower, and more
  • Dublin Half Marathon – 21km – Combine the highlights of the Dublin city tour with more exploration of the city’s greener side, including a run through Phoenix Park

Explore More Of Europe Through Running

While we couldn’t be more excited about hitting the trails in Ireland, we know it’s not the only country in its area that’s catching runners’ eyes.

We shared some of our favorite England and Scotland running retreats in this roundup here, as well as some ideas for other European gems like Mont Blanc and the Italian Dolomites here. But some of the best running holidays in Europe are across Spain, Iceland, Norway, and more.

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