sun chasers

6 Irish drives that end with great sunset views

Here’s where to head to if you’re chasing the sun during the milder months ahead.

IRELAND IS ONE of the best countries to watch Mother Nature put on her nightly show.

Due to our high-up northern hemisphere position, our summer sunsets are long and lingering. Sunset chasers have the benefit of Ireland’s (relatively) smog free skies, and proximity to the sea, making for an altogether more spectacular sunset experience.

Tempted? Here are 6 drives in Ireland to check out as summer creeps up…

Cliffs of Moher, Co Clare

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The 2,500km Wild Atlantic Way route, the longest coastal touring route in the world, offers rugged seascapes, wild landscapes and dramatic coastlines. One of the most dramatic sunset stops along the way has to be the Cliffs of Moher.

With eight headlands rolling off into the distance, few sunsets can beat the Cliffs of Moher in Co. Clare. The soundtrack of the Atlantic bashing off the cliffs below just adds to the sheer theatrical nature of it all.

Giant’s Causeway, Co Antrim

Shutterstock / Sara Winter Shutterstock / Sara Winter / Sara Winter

Take a trip along the Northern Ireland’s Coastal Causeway Route which runs from Belfast along the north coast and features many locations used to film Game of Thrones.

Time it right and you’ll hit the Giant’s Causeway, a UNESCO World Heritage Site to catch the sun going down. As the sun slowly sets it lights up the tops of the basalt columns with a gorgeous warm pink and golden glow.

Galley Head Lighthouse, Cork

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Did you know that Cork has the fifth most hashtagged sunrise in the world on Instagram? Well, it also has pretty spectacular sunsets too.

Test your driving skills along the twisty narrow road that leads to the Galley Head Lighthouse in West Cork and you will be rewarded with a breathtaking, uninterrupted sunset, perch on dramatic cliffs about 40 metres (130 feet) above sea level.

Croagh Patrick, Co Mayo

Shutterstock / Gerard Duffy Shutterstock / Gerard Duffy / Gerard Duffy

Take the rugged Atlantic coastal road along the Currane Peninsula in Mayo and enjoy spectacular views of Clew Bay and its 365 islands. There are loads of areas along this route to pull to enjoy the sunset.

Watching the sunset behind Croagh Patrick is a colourful experience, with vibrant reflections in the water and the mountain casting a shadowy figure, so have your camera at the ready.

Crohy Head, Co. Donegal

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Driving along the isolated stretch of coast along the Mullaghmullan Peninsula, you’ll come across some remarkable rock formations. One of them,the Sea Arch at Crohy Head – also known as the Breeches Sea Arch – is a popular sunset spot with landscape photographers.

Thanks to the quiet location, you can be assured of a peaceful sunset with nothing but the sound of the waves for company.

Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin

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Take the Dublin coast road and head out to Dun Laoghaire. Park up, buy a bag of chips, or an ice-cream and take a walk along the pier and back as you wait for the magic to happen.

Grab a perch and look out over the Irish Sea, as sailboats bob on the water. Dun Laoghaire is truly one of the best spots to enjoy the sunset in Dublin.

More: 6 spectacular drives to see the best of Ireland in springtime>

More: 8 ways to get your car properly clean without spending a cent >

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