Ireland is famous for its scenery, its history, and its methodology, so between hikes, trails, and fairy forts there is always plenty of activities to keep us busy. I have picked 5 Best Hikes in Ireland for some sustainable travel options and hope you get some inspiration for a Staycation.
In 2018, after 6 months of traveling, my partner Ciarán and I both knew to expect a shock to our system when it came to settling back into reality. Our 2019 New years resolution was to explore some of Ireland’s hidden gems. Sustainability is key to us and we knew traveling locally would be an easy way for us to continue on our eco journey.
There are literary thousands of trails to choose from on the Emerald Isle. Between coastal walks, mountain climbing, and forest walks, the choice is endless. To ensure that I didn’t get too carried away, I compiled a list of our top Sustainable travel trails and thought I would share them here on my blog. Ciarán and I plan on tackling each of them before the end of the summer, and ensure we make the most out of what this beautiful country has to offer. So, if you are like us and want to see more of what Ireland has to offer but don’t know where to start, hopefully, these 5 trail ideas will help you out.
12 O’Clock Hills, Kilkishen, Co. Clare
The 12 O’clock Hills (Knockanuarha hills) is located 5km outside Kilkishen, a small village in East Clare. depending on your capabilities, you can choose between two forest trails, a 5 km, and a 9km route. Both looped paths have been developed under the shade of trees and are suitable for all fitness levels. If you are looking for a fun family day out, this trail is ideal but be warned that access for buggies is limited. This walk is so close to our house, we ensure that we really embrace Sustainable travel by stopping at the local shops and packing a picnic. When we get to the top of the hill we sit down, chill out, relax, and take in the stunning view of the Burren and the Shannon Estuary. It is a dream.
Coumshingaun Lake walk, Comeragh Mountains, Co. Waterford
Coumshingaun is famous throughout Europe for its corrie and we are fortunate to have this scenic walk right on our doorstep. These corries were formed by glacier movement during the ice-age and are located in centre of the Comeragh mountains. The hike commences with a gentle slope through the forest but then gradually gets steeper with the highest point in the Comeraghs at 792 meters overlooking the lake. Relative fitness is important, but a good pair of hiking boots is key to completing the climb safely.
Cliffs of Moher Coast Walk, Liscannor to Doolin, Co. Clare
The Cliffs of Moher coast walk is located near my home house in Co. Clare on the west coast of Ireland. With the sound of the wild Atlantic ocean crashing against the rocks, this walk is not for the faint-hearted and would be deemed as moderate to strenuous. The route is 18km can take up to 7 hours to complete. It is important you give yourself enough time to stop and take pictures of the stunning views. Attractions include; Hags head, the Cliffs of Moher, Aran Islands, Galway Bay, and Aill Na Searrach. I have been advised that this walk is best to do on a dry day and shoes with a good grip are a necessity.
Howth Cliff Path Walk, Co. Dublin – Not Completed
Conveniently the starting point for this walk is at the train station in Howth. The cliff path walk is marked with green arrows (6km length) and purple arrows (10km). It is laid with paved walkways and stable earth paths throughout and is deemed to be an easy walk suitable for all fitness levels. Views include Baily Lighthouse, Lambay Island as well as Dublin Bay. If looking to pass the time, this walk is ideal. It enables you to explore the hustle and bustle of Dublin city but also take in some of Ireland’s scenic views.
Carrauntoohil Mountain, Killarney, Co. Kerry
Carrauntoohill is the highest peak in Ireland. It is 1,038 m tall and is the central peak of the Macgillycuddy’s Reeks mountain range. There are several hiking routes to choose from. The most popular route commences in Cronins yard and takes the Devils Ladder. This course is deemed to be the most straightforward but is considered to be strenuous. It is also important to note that due to the loose stones along the path it can be dangerous, so hiking boots are a must. Because of this, I have been warned that it is important to keep distance from groups ahead to prevent injury. Hiking boots and suitable hiking attire is key when taking on Carrauntoohill.
Thanks so much for reading, I understand there is so much information out there around sustainability and sustainable travel that it can be a minefield to navigate. I hope that through Instagram we can establish a little community where we can openly discuss our environmental views and the impact eco- living has on overall sustainability. I would love to hear your thoughts, you can find me, I would love to hear from you. You can find me on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram.
Keep it Green,