The great outdoors, on Dublin’s doorstep
Dublin is an ideal spot for fun and adventure. The great outdoors, including many nature trails along mountain and coastal views, is literally right on the doorstep of this compact city. This week’s Dublin Visitor Centre team Top 3 list of Nature Trails in Dublin comes from Brian.
A short DART (suburban rail) trip from the city centre lies the peninsula of Howth. This picturesque fishing village has a wonderful array of pubs, cafes & restaurants. The spectacular cliff walk, which takes about 90 minutes, from the Village to Howth Summit takes in some of the most stunning scenery Dublin has to offer. Stop at the Summit Pub for a pint and a bite to eat before heading back down to the village or the more daring adventurer can continue on the three hour Bog of the Frogs purple route which clings to the coastline. Ramble back across the wilds of Howth head and back down to the village. Howth is a popular tourist destination and the cliff walk can be busy, but the rest of the trail is so quiet and peaceful, you’ll forget you’re minutes away from the thriving city centre.
The Wicklow Way stretches 127km from South County Dublin to Carlow and covers some of the most breath taking mountain landscapes in Ireland. Taking 8-10 days to walk, the trail crosses the valley of Glendalough and the rolling parklands and forest trails of Wicklow National Park. I recommend the Wicklow Mountains National Park section for an enjoyable one day hike, exploring famous Glendalough and the more secluded Glenmalure Valley. For more dedicated hikers The Wicklow Way has a wide selection of accommodation options on the way, but plan out your stops! There are also many villages close to the route providing many options for refreshments and a bit of local interaction and famous Irish hospitality.
Along the banks of the Royal Canal is one of Dublin’s more unusual trails. The Royal Canal Way starts at the Ashbourne railway station and continues 105km to the River Shannon in the middle of Ireland. This trail is generally flat and easy to walk or cycle. It’s not unusual to see barges on the canal as you stroll along this surprisingly pleasant trail. The railway track runs parallel to the walk, meaning you can always hop on the next train to get back into Dublin city! Great for a short stretch of the legs, a decent day of hiking or a week long adventure into the heart of the country, the Royal canal way is off the beaten path and a unique way to see hidden Dublin and Ireland.
For more details or ideas on Nature Trails in Dublin visit Irish Trails and for more information on Dublin attractions visit our things to do section or stop by and say hello to the Dublin Visitor Centre team at the friendliest tourist information office in Dublin.