Hiking in Ireland will get you to peaceful hills, rocky ridges, wild moorlands, stunning sea cliffs, remote islands, and unexpected weather. However, it will all be a memorable life experience. Hiking in Ireland – Epic trails and hiking tips – Let’s hop into more details on this topic below!
For such a remote island, Ireland hits well above its weight speaking of hiking options. There are many trails all over the country, with broadly diverge landscapes. Now you could be climbing the hills encircling Belfast, another instant you could be bypassing the turbulent coast of Cork. Hiking is an outstanding practice to examine hidden parts of this stunning country.
All you require is a couple of sturdy shoes, or Nike Roshes per se, a rain jacket, some weightless gear and you’re right to go. You cannot choose where to start? Here are some hints to get you on your way, with trails right for beginners to experts. This goes without saying!
Table of Contents
- 1 The Best Hiking Trails in Ireland
- 1.1 #1 Carrauntoohil, County Kerry
- 1.2 #2 Wicklow Way
- 1.3 #3 Causeway Coast Way, County Antrim
- 1.4 #4 Mount Brandon, County Kerry
- 1.5 #5 Howth Summit, Dublin
- 1.6 #6 Croagh Patrick, County Mayo
- 1.7 #7 Muckross Lake Loop Trail, County Kerry
- 1.8 #8 The Beara Way
- 1.9 #9 Slieve Donard, County Down
- 1.10 #10 Tory Way, Tory Island, County Donegal
- 2 Some Vital Hiking Tips
- 3 Planning Your First Hiking Trip
The Best Hiking Trails in Ireland
#1 Carrauntoohil, County Kerry
Carrauntoohil is the country’s most elevated summit, at 1040m. There are many ways up, yet even the most precise needs good hillwalking and navigation mastery. Whereas, others are heavy scrambling or rock-climbing paths. If you don’t have adequate map-reading and compass talents – or if you are doubtful – hire a guide.
As a rule of thumb, Carrauntoohil is one of 27 heights in the Macgillycuddy’s Reeks mountain field. Also, there are more effortless mountains to climb for various capabilities. The location is full of lakes, woodlands, and breathtaking panoramas so you won’t be lacking on spots to explore.
#2 Wicklow Way
Wicklow Way is a fantastic view near Dublin! One of Ireland’s most widespread long-distance hikes because of its exceptional sight and its somewhat unrestricted start and finish points. Starting your journey from Dublin’s Marlay Park will get you through the core of the Wicklow Mountains and to the end of Clonegal in County Carlow.
There are plenty of half-and full-day choices along the way, with the path transiting through woods, rivers, rolling hills, and more rugged peak treks. This goes without saying!
#3 Causeway Coast Way, County Antrim
This is, by all means, an outstanding path for wide known sites. It consists of a two to three-day-long hike. A waymarked pathway that pursues Antrim’s north shore. Specifically dazzling is the final 16.5km from Carrick-a-Rede to the Giant’s Causeway. This passage can be done in one day and presents one of the most satisfactory coastal treks in Ireland. Leave tons of spare time for expeditions. What’s more, this route bypasses some of Northern Ireland’s best-loved visitor draws such as Dunluce Castle and Bushmills Distillery.
#4 Mount Brandon, County Kerry
The most elevated cliff on the Dingle Peninsula has stormy paths that yield jaw-droppingly stunning views. It stands in magnificent seclusion to the north of Dingle, a thorny ridge bordered by dazzling cliffs and glacial lakes to the northeast, and descending steeply into the sea to the northwest. Relying on the route, it may take up to six hours. What’s more, in clear weather the sceneries are stupendous. This is the unwritten rule, by all means!
#5 Howth Summit, Dublin
A looped walk near the projections starts at Howth DART station. Track the green arrow along the boardwalk and then turn right onto the cliff route. The walk takes you up to the summit before winding back down again. There are other, longer walks sketched by blue, red, and purple indicators (which somewhat overlap the greenway). This walk will give you fantastic views of Dublin Bay yet it can get stuffed at weekends.
#6 Croagh Patrick, County Mayo
As a rule of thumb, this is the best peak hike in the west of Ireland. The primary track up Croagh Patrick climbs the mountain from the marked car park in the west stop of Murrisk. The steep trail is shaky in regions and it gets stuffed on sunny weekends. At the summit, you’ll see a 1905 whitewashed assembly and a 9th-century rhetoric fountain. The panoramas are, by all means, sublime. Hikers are instructed not to employ the traditional Pilgrim’s Path due to increased levels of erosion.
#7 Muckross Lake Loop Trail, County Kerry
Even though it is short, you could effortlessly spend most of a day walking around this spiral trail (anticlockwise exclusively for cyclists), which brings in some of the most photogenic regions of Killarney National Park. There are lovely side pathways to explore on the course. Also, try not to miss the 10-minute diversion to Old Weir Bridge, where you can watch tour boats powering through the narrow, rocky channel.
Sprawling more than 10,236 hectares, it goes without saying that this sublime playground is an idyllic location to examine with a bunch of other more rugged hiking trails. This is for anyone wanting to see more of the antique oak woods or see panoramic sceneries of its highest mountains.
#8 The Beara Way
This 206km waymarked trek includes a loop close to the Beara Peninsula. The location is fairly unused to mass tourism and makes a likable disparity to the Ring of Kerry to the north.
The Beara Way mainly tracks old roads and paths, infrequently rises above 340m, and takes in some of the stunning Wild Atlantic Way coastlines. The terrain is sprinkled with stone rings and archaeological zones from the Bronze Age, this is a wonderful one for history enthusiasts.
#9 Slieve Donard, County Down
The most elevated juncture in the Mourne Mountains, on clear daylight you’ll have a picture of a massive area of Ulster and often even out to Scotland. The 100-year-old Mourne Wall slices through the valleys for 22 miles (35km) and you can employ that as a trail trait to explore more of the territory.
#10 Tory Way, Tory Island, County Donegal
A waymarked circle walk that conveys you around Ireland’s most remote populated island. The eastern ending of the island is overwhelmed by craggy ridges and sea piles, including the breathtaking Tor Mór, a 400m-long blade of rock limited with pinnacles. If you wish to escape the crowd, this is the right place for you!
Some Vital Hiking Tips
- May, June, as well as September are the most suitable periods for hiking and cycling. These months have the best possibility of dry weather and smaller odds of midges.
- There are cliff hikes and way-marked paths proper for every power in Ireland. Likewise, regional tourist seats have maps and brochures with components of local hikes near you.
- Unlike many other European countries, hikers and cyclists in Ireland have no privilege to access privately possessed land, not even on rugged moorland and peaks. Access has been negotiated with landowners for many federal trails and waymarked walks (disputes over access are why multiple of these trails track public roads for long spaces). Nevertheless, you will periodically come across closed gates, barbed-wire fences, or ‘no hikers allowed’ signals. All these are lawful and must be obeyed.
- For quick walks on waymarked pathways all, you will need is comfy footwear, a rain jacket, and some meals and water. Hikers embarking additionally into Ireland’s hills and swamps should be suitably qualified and careful, as the weather can become harsh at any time of year.
- After the rain, peaty mud can evolve to boggy, so always wear sturdy hiking shoes or boots and carry fine waterproofs and additional food and drink.
- Always carry a map and compass and understand how to utilize them. This goes without saying! Don’t depend on mobile phones (even though having one with you is a fine idea). Vacate a note with your course and anticipated time of return with a relied individual and let them know when you have returned safely. Know that is quite important!
Planning Your First Hiking Trip
The smell of nature and the sense of revivified earth under your feet, the soft sound of a babbling stream, and a world free of agendas, emails, and burdens. It’s time to get ready for hiking, by all means. By this moment, you are likely excited to engage yourself in nature, yet you may still feel a bit worried. How do you prepare a hiking trip everyone in your company can enjoy? Where do you start?
- Finding the trail. You won’t begin your hiking experience by jumping in the car and exploring a path along the road. While there’s nothing mistaken with a bit of spontaneity, it may be hard to slip upon the perfect trail for your necessities. Rather, review online before you hit the road. This goes without saying! The web is full of amazing hiking websites with helpful knowledge that allows you to explore trails near you. Many of them also show whether a path is manageable, average, or complex. You may even learn how long the trail generally takes to end, how to access it, parking details, and more. Examine the maps of the path to help you prepare your day.
- Time. Evaluate how much time you want to spend on your hike. Are you peeking for a trail you can complete between brunch and a film? Or are you intending on hiking from dawn to dusk? Also, think how long it takes to get to the pathway and how height will impact timing.
- Weather. Always inspect the weather forecast prior to a hike so you can wear rain or wind pants, generally to dress properly. It may not be 100-degree weather or a tornado but you have to be ready for anything! Likewise, plan according to the period of the year. No matter your talent or fitness level, you should still bypass hiking new trails in the dark.
- Factors of the trail. Become acquainted with your trail before you begin the hike. Look at maps or flyers so you can view length, test level, peak, and terrain. Think about where you will park and where the toilets are. You can also determine whether you want to take a spiral trail, so you twirl up back where you began, or a straight trail that will need you to retrace your steps.