St. Declan’s Way is an old pilgrimage route linking Cashel in County Tipperary and Ardmore in County Waterford. The trail marks the route that St. Declan took when travelling to Cashel to meet St. Patrick in the fifth century. At the end of the walk is St. Declan’s monastery, holy well and grave in Ardmore. Here you will also find one of the best preserved round towers in Ireland.
The route is fully marked with blue arrows to guide walkers, and can be broken up into five sections:
- Cashel to Cahir – 20km – flat terrain on back roads.
- Cahir to Goatenbridge – 20km – flat terrain on back roads and tracks.
- Goatenbridge to Lismore (via Mount Melleray) – 30km, over the Knockmealdown Mountains. Mountainous terrain on forest trails and back roads.
- Lismore to Aglish – 21km – flat terrain on back roads and tracks.
- Aglish to Ardmore – 20km – flat terrain on back roads, tracks and finishing along beach.
Begin your walk at the Rock of Cashel car-park. From there, you will pass through Cashel, Cahir, Ardfinnan and Goatenbridge in South Tipperary. Continue into West Waterford through Mount Melleray, Lismore, Cappoquin and Aglish, and finish at St. Declan’s Monastery.
St. Declan’s Way can be walked in either direction, however it’s recommended that you walk north to south (Cashel to Ardmore). This route will lead you to finish up at the seat of St. Declan on Ardmore Beach.
There are a number of regular Bus Éireann services running in both the Cashel and Ardmore areas. Less frequent services are available to Ardfinnan, Lismore, Cappoquin and Ardmore. Local Link Waterford also runs a number of useful routes at the Waterford side of the Knockmealdown Mountains.
Map of St. Declan’s Way: