We may be limited to our counties for the moment and with the Bank Holiday weekend coming up, it is nice to get out and about.
The Wild Atlantic Way
During the past 11 years, a variety of Greenways has appeared across the country. The first was the 42km route from Achill to Westport via Mulranny and Newport. It is in Mayo along the former rail line. The stunning scenery over Clew Bay makes this a lovely walk or cycle.
The Golden Vale
The Great Southern Greenway is 40km follows the old Limerick to Tralee rail line. It will take you through the pasture of the Golden Vale and many pretty villages. This greenway will eventually connect Limerick to Tralee.
The Grand Canal Way
The Grand Canal Way is 117km from Lucan to Shannon Harbour in Offaly, it is easily divided into sections. it crosses, Dublin, Kildare, and Offaly, The 8.5km stretch from the 3rd Lock in Inchicore to 12th Lock at Lucan are an easy walk along the canal.
The Waterford Greenway is the longest, dedicated off-road walking and cycling trail in Ireland, 46km. Visitors can cycle or walk the route which runs from Waterford City to Dungarvan. It follows the old Waterford to Mallow railway line over the famous Ballyvoyle Viaduct and taking people through the Durrow Tunnel.
The Pilgrims Route
The Royal Canal Way is also known as the Pilgrim’s Route. It is here that in 1847 almost 1,500 people walked the banks of the Royal Canal to get to Dublin. Where they emigrated to Canada. It passes through Dublin, Kildare, Meath, Westmeath, and Longford.
Ireland’s Ancient East
The Boyne Greenway is in Ireland’s Ancient East and will take you to meet heroes of the past. It begins at the Peace Bridge in Drogheda. The walk takes you along the river to the site of the Battle of the Boyne at Oldbridge, a gentle stroll of only two km.
Walk between the Mountains of Mourne and the Cooleys
On the border with North Ireland, the Great Eastern Greenway is a nice flat seven km walk on Carlingford Lough. Walk or cycle from Carlingford to Omeath with stunning views of the Mountains of Mourne and the Cooley Mountains. It was originally the Dundalk to Newry Railway.
Not for the faint-hearted – a cliff walk
In Co Antrim the stunning cliff-face walk, the Gobbins is a must. Designed to hug the cliff walls it crosses bridges and above the roiling sea at Islandmagee, it is 3 km and is breath-taking. There is a charge of £20 for adults and £14.50 for children, £42 for family tickets, thegobbinscliffpath.com.
All of these Greenways can be walked or cycled and there are cycling hire places at various points along the routes. An Ordinance Survey map can be useful for planning your journey, osi.ie.