Thursday, April 1, 2010

Beara Way & Dursey Island Cable Car

Go to the start of scenic Beara Way, go to Dursey Island at the Beara Peninsula in West Cork! But the "trail" is not for the faint-hearted because it runs 30m above the a cable car to be precise.

Dursey Island Cable Car is the only cable car in Europe that goes over water! Local are somewhat proud of the "tin-can hanging from telephone wires" given the fact that there is no other cable car in the whole country. Watch the windswept "tin-can"in our video:


Once you're on Dursey Island, Beara Way loops 11km round the island - an easy hike after a tough journey!

Sea ViewThere are no lodging options on Dursey Island. The closest B+B, Sea View (left), is located in the village of Allihies, which is a 15-minute drive on R572/575 to the North. Another option is Beara Coast Hotel in Castletownbere (25 minutes along R572 to the East).


Travel Guides

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Gougane Barra Forest Park (Guágan Barra)

Open KML file to view the hiking trails of Gougane Barra in Google Earth!

Gougane Barra Forest Park is located in the Shehy Mountains, 20 km southwest of Ballingeary in County Cork. The backdrop of rugged hills, dark pine forests and tranquil Gougane Barra Lake (Lough an Ghugain) create a unique atmosphere of magical calmness - thus making the area a haven for hikers!

There is a tiny island in the lake with an isolated chapel dating from the 19th century. Against the wild scenery of Gougane Barra, the chapel appears even more iconic and consequently it is one of the most photographed sites in County Cork. The chapel is accessible via a narrow causeway linking the island with the shore. River Lee (An Laoi) rises near Gougane Barra, flows through the lake and continues to Cork Harbour where it eventually empties.

In 1966 the area was named as Ireland's first national park. The name Gougane Barra derives from St. Finbarr (Barra in Irish, the patron saint of Cork), who is said to have built his monastery on the island in the lake in the 6th century, and means "Barra's retreat enclosed by mountains".
The forest park offers six hiking trails of different levels and some of them are leading to picturesque waterfalls and viewpoints:
  • Slí Ghaorthaidh, 0.5 hrs, multi-access (i.e. suitable for wheelchairs and buggies)
  • Slí Com Rua, 10 mins, moderate
  • Slí Doire Na Coise, 1.15 hrs, moderate
  • Slí Laoi, 1 hr, moderate
  • Slí An Easa, 1 hr, strenous
  • Slí Sleibhe, 1.45 hrs, strenous

View Gougane Barra Forest Park in a larger map

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Dalkey Island (Deilginis)

Open KML file to view Dalkey Island in Google Earth!

Dalkey Island is an island located 300m offshore from Dalkey (Deilginis), a coastal suburb south-east of Dublin City Centre. The Irish name Deilginis means 'Thorn Island'. The island is thorn-shaped and this is from which Dalkey acquired its name. There are no hiking trails as such on the island but due to its small size it is easy to explored without any guidance.

There are a number of ancient remains on the island with the ruins of St. Begnet's Church (7th century) and a Martello Tower being the most historic ones. Martellos are small defensive forts that were built during the 19th century and used for coastal defence against a potential invasion during the Napoleonic era. The Martello Tower on Dalkey Island is one of the most remote towers in the former British Empire.

View Dalkey Island in a larger map

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Dingle Peninsula (An Daingean)

Open KML file to view the hiking trails up to Mt Brandon in Google Earth!

Dingle Peninsula (An Daingean) is less touristy than the Ring of Kerry. It offers an extraordinary number of rings forts, high crosses and other ancient monuments. A hiking delight is Mt Brandon (Cnoc Bhréannain), at 951m Ireland's second-highest mountain. There are two walking trails up. A gradual one from the west and a more exciting one from the east, allow at least five hours for the climb.

View Dingle Peninsula in a larger map

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Connemara National Park (Conamara)

Open KML file to view Connemara National Park in Google Earth!

Connemara National Park (Conamara) lies northwest of Galway and covers 2000 hectares of bog, mountain and heath. It encloses a number of the Twelve Bens. The park's heart is Big Glen (Gleann Mór), through which flows the River Polladirk. There's fine walking up the glen and over the surrounding mountains.

View Connemara National Park in a larger map

Friday, February 29, 2008

Great Sugar Loaf Mountain (Ó Cualann)

Open KML file to view Great Sugar Loaf Mountain in Google Earth!

Great Sugar Loaf Mountain (Ó Cualann) arises at the verge of the Wicklow Mountains, just south of Bray. The combination of its conical tip and its isolation from other hills makes the Great Sugar Loaf one of Ireland's most distinctive peaks. His overall shape reminds of a volcano and though it is only 503m high, it appears much taller due to its height relative to the surrounding landscape.

The end of the trail is adventurous because hikers need to climb the last 50m to reach the summit. However, they will be rewarded with spectacular views to Howth, Powerscourt Estate, the Wicklow Mountains and over Killiney Bay.

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Thursday, January 17, 2008

Glendalough (Gleann dá Loch)

Open KML fileView to view Glendalough and Wicklow Way in Google Earth!

Glendalough (Gleann dá Loch, 'Valley of the Two Lakes') is one of the most important monastic sites in Ireland.

It's located in the Wicklow Mountains, located south-west of Dublin.

Two of the best hiking trails around Glendalough are Spinc Trail and the multi-day hike Wicklow Way.

View Wicklow Mountain National Park in a larger map