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Ardara to Donegal Cycle Directions


Section 1

0 to 10km

Head north from Ardara Main Street. Go up the hill and past the church, and when the N56 turns right, take the left turn on the R261 signed Nairn and Portnoo to go straight ahead [5km marker]. After 6.0km, take the first left turn since leaving the town on the L7713, signed Rossbeg.

This road goes up and down several short rises.


Section 2

10 – 20km

After 3.8km, this road turns sharply left by a stone wall. Ignore the road straight ahead and keep left. You soon see Kiltooris Lough on your right.

Stay on this road as it loops around to the right. After passing the lake you go through Rosbeg, which has a fine beach. The road then turns north. You pass a shrine and follow the road [15km marker] all the way to Portnoo, which you reach after turning inland for a short spell and ignoring all turnoffs. When you see a wide beach ahead of you, you are on the edge of the village.

Portnoo adjoins Naran and the road goes through them both.


Section 3

20 – 30km

Turn left when you reach the t-junction with the R261 on the other side of Naran. After 4.5km [25km marker] you reach a t-junction with the N56, where you turn right, following the sign for Ardara.

A few metres later, take the first right turn. Keep straight on this road for 7.3km through some very remote countryside.


Section 4

30 – 40km

It will bring you to a t-junction on the R261 which you passed earlier on the trip. Turn left and cycle into Ardara. When you reach the t-junction with the N56, go straight down the hill and into the town.

At The Diamond – the small square in the centre of Ardara by The Nesbitt Arms, turn left along a narrow lane. Ignore the road that goes uphill. Stay on this road as it immediately bends left and leaves town [35km marker].


Section 5

40 – 50km

Stay on the road as it goes gradually uphill and goes along a plateau with great views. You pass numerous turnoffs. 9.9km after leaving the town, the road bends left, then right [45km marker].

After a 1.1km straight you ride next to a wood. You pass a track on your left and then see a sign for a crossroads. Take the left turn, which goes slightly downhill. After 2.4km down this hill, turn left when you reach the t-junction. Keep straight on this for 2.1km.


Section 6

50 – 56km

You reach Meenagran Junction. Turn right on the wide R262.

Take the first left turn, down a narrow road, and then the first right. You climb a little and then [55km marker] go down to a staggered crossroads. Here, you turn left and ignore the immediate left turn. Follow the main road around the bend to the right and keep going – effectively, you go straight through this crossroads.

You soon reach a t-junction at Letterbarra Church, where you turn right, signed Letterbarra. You shortly reach another t-junction. Turn right, following the sign for Blue Stack Drive. Then you take the first left and soon you have a short climb.

Ignore all turnoffs after you reach the top and descend into Donegal Town.


Section 7

60 – 63km

When you reach a roundabout at the edge of the town, take the second exit and this road will soon take you to The Diamond in the centre.