One of the best parts about Dublin is how easy it is to get out of the city and into the beautiful country surrounding it. Here are our top five recommendations for day walks.
- Howth Head. This walk across Howth’s cliff tops offers unique and incredible views of the sea as well as a ready-made challenge for those who enough a walk. There are various different walks that you can go on and these are marked using colours. As a result the full walk from Howth village can take from an hour and a half to anywhere around three hours. Along the way you walk along the cliff path, which is a journey of about 3km. If you choose, parking is available in the summit car park and you can just do the cliff walk itself. This is a beautiful walk, especially in the summer, and the long grass is ideal for sitting down to have a picnic.
- Glendalough. This glacier created lake in Wicklow is one of the most serene spaces for a walk or a hike, depending on which route you choose. Different routes have been set up and marked so you can choose what level of walking you wish to do (beginner, intermediate, advanced) and also what rough time you want to complete the walk in (from 1 hour to between 4 and 5 hours in a loop). During the walks there are chances to see wildlife such as deer, goats, kestrels, falcons and more as well as waterfalls and an old miner’s town. Due to the number of walks, it is possible to return many times and discover a new path. When you return to the lake, there are many places to eat food from home, and a small café that sells ice creams, drinks, and a number of hot food items.
- Phoenix Park. The Phoenix Park is known for a number of things – namely the zoo, Aras an Uachtarain and its deer. It’s also, however, a very large, green space in the heart of Dublin. The walk around is pleasant, and there are many different routes to go – whether that’s along the roads within the park or down the dirt paths that have been created. As well as a nice walk, there are Segway tours in the park and bicycles can also be rented (it says €5 for a few hours which tends to get you about 3-4 hours). There are also tea rooms and a café within the park as you’re wandering in case you need a snack. Magazine fort also stands abandoned in the park and is an interesting set of buildings to take a look at.
- North Bull Island. Dollymount strand makes up a large part of North Bull Island, but the island itself is good for bird watching and quite quiet walks as most people stick to the first km of the beach. As a UNESCO protected biosphere reserve, Bull Island harbours some unique animals and birds such as Reed Buntings and Irish Hares. It’s also a great place for swimming (when it’s warm!) and flying kites. The spot has also recently become popular for water sports.
- Bray to Greystones. This walk takes about two and a half hours across a really well-kept and scenic costal path. The walk is moderately difficult but brings you along the sea the whole way and ends in the cute town of Greystones, which has plenty of cafes, and lunch spots for when the walk is finished and you’re famished. The DART can bring you back into town after your walk and is fairly inexpensive.