Where should we walk in Ireland?
April 29, 2012 2:37 AM   Subscribe

Irish walking tour recommendations?

My wife and I are considering a walking tour in Ireland (along the lines of what you see here) this June. Googling "walking tour Ireland" brings up a lot of hits without much way for me to distinguish good tour operators from bad ones. What we had in mind:

1. Self-guided (i.e. not a group tour).
2. Scenery!
3. Moderate difficulty (20-30 km) per day average.
4. 4-5 days.

Does anyone have recommendations of good tour operators, or of which areas that would be nicest? Also, if you think this is a dumb idea and we should instead rent a car and do day hikes, please tell me that too.
posted by myeviltwin to Travel & Transportation around Ireland (4 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Don't know anything about tour operators, but I like doing bits of the Wicklow Way, you can jump on that from local transport out of Dublin.
posted by Iteki at 4:31 AM on April 29, 2012

Shit, hit send too soon, here's the Wiclow Way. Other areas you might enjoy could be The Burren and Cliffs of Mohar on the west coast, and indeed the Aran Islands off the west coast.

Another option is The Ring of Kerry in the south-west, with the Kerry Way, and the Black Valley, etc.

You could also go up north, the Giant's Causeway and the amazing Carrick-a-Rede bridge.

I would like to raise a flag for the Irish Youth Hostel network, An Oige. I haven't stayed with them for years and years, but their locations are regularly amazing, and it's very good value.

Can't help you with any organisers or what have you, but it shouldn't be difficult to put together your own trip, it's a pretty small country, nowhere is too far from anywhere, and there's loads of nice places to stay. That said, be sure to exercise all usual hiking precautions and stuff, obviously.
posted by Iteki at 4:45 AM on April 29, 2012

I can't recommend any tour companies, but any that carry the Failte Ireland logo or that you find listed on discoverireland.ie will likely be fine.

All of the places above are beautiful, but I would have to add Connemara. Wicklow is fine, but the west coast (Kerry, Clare, Galway & Mayo) is IMHO way more beautiful.
posted by Long Way To Go at 11:19 AM on April 29, 2012

Some good suggestions up here. Don't forget the Mourne mountains - you can easily spend 4-5 days doing some spectacular walking, making places like carlingford or newcastle your base. The hills there will be a good bit more difficult than you may find around Wicklow, and the scenery is (in my opinion) just a little bit more spectacular. You can get to Carlingford from Dublin in very little time these days thanks to the new motorway, but for ease of access you cant beat Wicklow.

Also, for guides to individual walks and mountains Mountain Views is a great site. Awkward to navigate but there is a huge amount of detailed experience on every mountain in Ireland listed there.

I love walking around Ireland, drop me a line if you have any questions!
posted by kev23f at 9:03 AM on May 2, 2012

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