The Cliffs of Moher have proudly stood above the Atlantic Ocean for over 350 million years.  These massive cliffs on Ireland’s West coast are the countries most popular tourist attraction.

The cliffs span over 8 miles starting in Doolin to the North and ending at Hags Head to the South.

We will discuss the two way of seeing the Cliffs.  One way is via the massively busy visitors center or our preferred way through the Cliffs Of Moher Coastal Walk.

Before we jump into the specifics let’s cover some essentials that you should know to help plan your visit.

Cliffs Of Moher Weather

The weather along this magnificent coast can be challenging.  As the Irish saying goes: “Is iomaí athrú a chuireann lá Márta dhe” or “there is a lot of weather in a March day.”  Well this holds true for any day in Ireland and especially so at the Cliffs Of Moher.

To get a feel for the weather you can visit the live weather cam and wind gauge located at the visitors center.

I also recommend having a look at the Irish National Weather Service which will help you to plan for a good weather day for your visit.

People will also tell you to avoid mornings due to fog but I wouldn’t rule out the mornings.  They are a great time to visit and you’ll beat the crowds by going early. 

While too much fog isn’t a good thing, a little fog can really add to the experience making for an even more dramatic scene.  If it is foggy it will likely burn off as the day goes on.  Most importantly, just don’t be in a hurry.  

cliffs of moher

Getting Here

In my opinion the only way to do this trip is by renting a car.  The thought of hopping on a tour bus for hours to then be fed like cattle through the visitor center entrance is a no go for me.

But if this is your only option it’s still definitely worth the experience.

If you’re nervous about renting a car in Ireland that’s completely normal.  We were too.  We did have a great experience renting a car in Ireland but here are some Tips and Tricks that will save you some headache.

Cliffs Of Moher From Dublin

Getting to the cliffs by coach will take you about 4 hours from Dublin.  You can book all-day excursions that will even take care of meals.

Cliffs of moher from galway

Another popular option is to catch a bus from Galway.  This will only run you about 2 hours so is a far better option than coming from Dublin.

Cliffs Of Moher From Doolin

cliffs of moher
Allright folks now we’re getting to the good stuff!  Doolin is an awesome little town just a 10 minute drive from the Cliffs.  Rent yourself a car and head here for your Cliffs of Moher experience.

This charming coastal town while small still packs a punch.  It’s full of energy, live music, and a fun pub scene.

 Be sure to check out the Doonagore Castle just outside of Doolin.

cliffs of moher
From Doolin you’ll have to option to drive to the visitors center or better yet take the Cliffs Of Moher Coastal Trail.

One piece of advice, book your accommodations early in Doolin.  This place fills up fast.  We tried booking 3 months out and there was nothing!

The Coastal Walk from Doolin to the visitors center is about 5 miles (2-2.5 hours).

If you continue to Hags Head from the visitors center that’s another 6 miles.

There is a hop-on hop-off shuttle service that makes hiking the full or just part of the trail a breeze.

Accommodations in Doolin – Check availability at Booking.com or Hotels.com

 

Cliffs Of Moher Map

cliffs of moher

You can download this high-resolution printable map along with other travel resources

HERE

Visiting The Cliffs Of Moher

Plan on spending a full day here.  Pack yourself a lunch and bring an extra layer as the wind can pick up making things a bit chilly.  This visitors center does have a cafe should you need anything.

The trail runs for miles along the edge of the cliffs with endless spots to relax and take in the views.

The busiest times for Moher are between 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. which corresponds to when the tour buses are here.

cliffs of moher

The visitors Center

By far the most popular way to get here is through the visitors center.  This is where the tour buses that come in from all over Ireland shuttle in massive amounts of people.

If you’ve opted for a tour bus package the visitors center is where you’ll start.  Don’t be discouraged by the crowds as they quickly thin out once you start hiking from the visitors center.

Visitors Center Hours Of Operation

January 09:00 – 17:00.
February 09:00 – 17:00.
March 08:00 – 19:00.
April 08:00 – 19.00.
May to August 08:00 – 21:00.

September 08:00 – 19:00.
October 08:00 – 19:00.
November 09:00 – 17:00.
December 09:00 – 17:00.

The visitors center has an ATM, restaurant, and restrooms.

Entrance Fee

There really isn’t an entrance fee per se but rather a parking fee.  You’ll pay $8 for parking or you can purchase online in advance for a discounted rate of $4.

To climb Obrian’s Tower you’ll have to pay an additional $2.

If you hike in from Doolin or another town along the coastal walk trail you won’t have to pay any entrance fees.

cliffs of moher

Cliffs Of Moher Coastal Walk

If you look at the map from above you’ll see the visitors center located right in the middle of the coastal trail.

If you’re starting here you can hang either a right towards Doolin or the more popular way towards Hags Head.  I would recommend taking a left towards Hags Head if you’re starting from the visitors center.

Once you get to the boundary of the visitors center property you’ll come to a gate like thing that warns of certain death if you venture past here.  Ignore and walk through the gate but don’t be stupid because from here on out there is no fencing protecting you from the crumbling and delicate edge of the cliffs.  

Plenty of people have fallen to their death here trying to get that perfect Instagram shot!

cliffs of moher
As you walk the trail it will often divide into a moderate path and a more exposed option that you can see above.  If you’re not a big fan of heights the inner path is probably a better option.

Cliffs of Moher Coastal Walk Details

Be sure to download the printable map which has all the trail info below plus some additional hiking options.

The trail itself is loose gravel but pretty moderate in grade.  There is little to no shade so plan accordingly.

  • Liscannor – Doolin 12.5 miles, 4-5 hours
  • Moher Sports Field – Cliffs of Moher Visitor Center 4 miles, 2 hours
  • Cliffs of Moher Visitors Center – Doolin 5 miles, 2.5 hours
  • Cliffs of Moher Visitors Center – Hags Head 6 miles, 3 hours
cliffs of moher

Cliffs of Moher Final Thoughts

We had an absolute blast here and cruising the coastal trails was quite an experience.  Here’s a recap of our tips for visiting the Cliffs of Moher.

  • Stay near the cliffs at Doolin or one of the other nearby towns.
  • The busiest times especially near the visitors center are 11-4 so plan accordingly.
  • Check the weather before you go!
  • If you’re here for Photography, the West facing cliffs are best in the evenings.
  • Bring extra layers because the ocean breeze can get chilly.
Visiting Ireland\'s Cliffs of Moher doesn\'t have to be a crowded experience.  Discover how best to visit this amazing attraction on Ireland\'s West coast.  Best times to visit, downloadable hiking map, and even a shuttle service for hiking the coastal trails.