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Tales and Trails

Tales and Trails

Tales and Trails is a new experience that highlights all the reasons for planning a short walking break to one of Ireland’s spectacular trails this year. Through articles, videos and an immersive podcast series featuring some of Ireland’s most interesting personalities, we’re encouraging you to get out there and discover the great outdoors.

Choose Your Region

Glencolmcille Tower Loop, Donegal

Glencolmcille Tower Loop, Donegal

Tales & Trails with Finn Ni Fhaolain

We took on the Tower Loop at Glencolmcille in Donegal with author, marine scientist and chef Finn Ni Fhaolain. We chatted about her cooking blog and her unique relationship with the ocean from foraging to surfing.

Trail Info

10km
10km
2-3hrs
2-3hrs
Moderate
Moderate
St. Columba's Church
St. Columba's Church

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

Located along some of the most epic stretches of the Wild Atlantic Way, the Glencolmcille Tower Loop is 10km long and takes less than 3 hours to complete. It starts off and ends in the Gaeltacht village of the same name, named after Saint Colm Cille.

The saint resided in the valleys of Glencolmcille, and you can still see the ruins of several churches today.

This hike is the highlight of any short break in this area and the summit truly offers some of the most breathtaking views in the country. It can get a little steep so make sure you bring your hiking boots.

Plan Your Trip

The Bothy Loop, Letterkeen, Wild Nephin Ballycroy National Park, Mayo

The Bothy Loop, Letterkeen, Wild Nephin Ballycroy National Park, Mayo

Tales & Trails with JP McMahon

We took on The Bothy Loop in Wild Nephin Ballycroy National Park, Letterkeen in Mayo with top chef JP McMahon. We chatted through his love of food and nature, and his hectic life as a restauranteur.

Trail Info

6km
6km
1.5hrs
1.5hrs
Moderate
Moderate
Brogan Carroll Bothy
Brogan Carroll Bothy

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

The third largest of Ireland’s six National Parks, this is the place to escape to when it’s time to go truly off-grid and get back to nature.

This hidden gem is one of the most untouched landscapes in the country – perfect for those who love exploration and are craving a peaceful getaway. Boasting the Owenduff/Nephin bog complex, the stunning Slieve Carr, Ireland’s most remote mountain; and some utterly exceptional wildlife, this National Park on the Wild Atlantic Way should be on everyone’s walking bucket list.

This 6km loop takes around one and a half hours to complete, and encompasses some points of interest which include Nephin Beg mountain range, the view of Slieve Carr and the Altaconey River.

Plan Your Trip

Sheep’s Head Lighthouse Loop, Cork

Sheep’s Head Lighthouse Loop, Cork

Tales & Trails with Andy Lee

We walked the Sheep's Head Lighthouse Loop with Irish Olympian Boxer and World Champion Andy Lee. We chatted about his life leading up to becoming World Champion, how boxing changed his life, and the obstacles that he faced on the way.

Trail Info

4km
4km
2hrs
2hrs
Moderate
Moderate
Tooreen Trailhead
Tooreen Trailhead

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

The Sheep’s Head Lighthouse Loop on Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way is a stunning coastal trail that takes in breathtaking cliff walks and spectacular 360 views.

Located just north of the Mizen Peninsula, this walk offers a unique view south to Mizen Head and north to Bere Island.

Starting at Bernie’s Cupan Tae Café at the Tooreen Trailhead, the Sheep’s Head Lighthouse loop is 4.2km in distance and takes about 90 minutes to complete. It does get a little steep and rocky at points – so a good pair of walking or hiking boots are essential.

Plan Your Trip

Lough Easkey Loop, Sligo

Lough Easkey Loop, Sligo

Tales & Trails with Georgie Crawford

We took on the Lough Easkey Loop with podcaster and radio presenter Georgie Crawford. We chatted about Georgie's cancer diagnosis and how she managed to turn her nightmare into an incredibly positive journey to wellness, healing and self-care.

Trail Info

6km
6km
1.5hrs
1.5hrs
Moderate
Moderate
Lough Easkey
Lough Easkey

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

The Lough Easkey Loop on the Wild Atlantic Way is a walk that is remote, exposed, and strikingly beautiful.

This 6km loop takes about 2 hours to complete in full, and certain stretches get soft and boggy, so it’s definitely recommended you wear good walking boots and pack raingear and plenty of water.

The walk takes you around the shoreline of Lough Easkey along lakeshore tracks, laneways and minor roads and is situated in the heart of the Ox Mountain range.

Plan Your Trip

Slieve Foy Loop, Carlingford

Slieve Foy Loop, Carlingford

Tales & Trails with Anna Geary

We were joined by camogie All-Ireland medallist and TV personality Anna Geary to take on the Slieve Foye Loop in Carlingford, Co. Louth. On the trail, we chatted about Anna’s passion for sport, and life as a female sportsperson in Ireland.

Trail Info

9km
9km
2-3hrs
2-3hrs
Hard
Hard
Tourist Office Carpark
Tourist Office Carpark

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

The Slieve Foy Loop is a varied walk with incredible views right beside one of the most charming small towns in Ireland, nestled in Ireland’s Ancient East.

This 9km loop takes around three hours to complete in full, and takes you up the majestic Slieve Foye, the highest peak on the Cooley Peninsula. Given the various terraines on this hike, hiking boots are essential. There are some seriously spectacular views of Carlingford Lough from the mountains and you can also view the medieval town of Carlingford at various points along the walk – a hidden gem with breathtaking scenery, a rich history, and terrific pubs and restaurants.

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Kinnitty Castle Woods, Offaly

Kinnitty Castle Woods, Offaly

Tales & Trails with Alison Canavan

We took on the Kinnitty Castle Loop in Co. Offaly with wellness coach, motivational speaker and lifestyle blogger Alison Canavan. We chatted about her career as an international model and how she transitioned to motherhood and a life of reflection and self-care.

Trail Info

4km
4km
1.5hrs
1.5hrs
Easy
Easy
Kinnitty Forest Trailhead
Kinnitty Forest Trailhead

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

The Kinnitty Castle Loop is a walk that is nestled in the foothills of the majestic Slieve Bloom mountains and takes you through beautiful broadleaf forestry, the grounds of Kinnitty Castle and if you want to extend the trail further, you’ll pass the ruins of Glinsk Castle.

The Slieve Bloom are the oldest mountains in Europe along with the Massif Central in France, and on a clear day you can see the high points of the four provinces of Ireland from its peak.

Plan Your Trip

Mangan’s Lane Loop, Wicklow

Mangan’s Lane Loop, Wicklow

Tales & Trails with Sonia O’Sullivan

We took on the Mangan’s Lane Loop walk with Irish Olympian Sonia O’Sullivan. We chatted about her hugely successful running career, how she dealt with fame and her life since retirement.

Trail Info

5km
5km
1.5hrs
1.5hrs
Moderate
Moderate
Mangan's Lane
Mangan's Lane

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

The Mangan’s Lane Loop in Tinahely, Co. Wicklow is a 5km looped trail that takes around 90 minutes to complete.

Tinahely is a small village, nestled in the Derry River Valley, in the southern reaches of the Wicklow Mountains. One of the great things about Tinahely’s walking trails is the scope for variety in the routes you can take, offering a walking experience for all levels and abilities.

The official trailhead is about a 1.5km walk up Mangan’s Lane from the GAA carpark below. From the trailhead you can choose from three looped trails, all of varying lengths and difficulty levels.

Mangan’s Loop is the gentlest of the three, but there are some steep ascents – so a good pair of walking or hiking boots are essential.

Plan Your Trip

Rock An Thorabh Loop, Glen of Aherlow, Tipperary

Rock An Thorabh Loop, Glen of Aherlow, Tipperary

Tales & Trails with Stefanie Preissner

We were joined by author and screenwriter Stefanie Preissner to take on the Rock An Thorabh Loop in the Glen of Aherlow, Co. Tipperary. On the trail, we talked about the creation of her hit comedy drama 'Can't Cope, Won't Cope', her recent book 'Can I Say No?' and her journey of self-discovery.

Trail Info

6km
6km
2.5hrs
2.5hrs
Moderate
Moderate
Christ The King Statue
Christ The King Statue

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

The Rock An Thorabh Loop in Ireland’s Ancient East takes you through forest track and woodland trail along the ridge of Slievenamuck, with breathtaking vistas between the trees of the Glen of Aherlow and Galtee Mountains in Co. Tipperary.

This moderately difficult 6km loop takes around two hours to complete in full – and with some steep ascents it’s important you have your hiking boots on.

The walk starts at the Christ The King statue, with a view point that offers magnificent panoramas of the mountains across the luscious Glen of Aherlow – the perfect way to start your adventure.

Plan Your Trip

Rinmaher Walking Trail, Portumna Forest Park, Galway

Rinmaher Walking Trail, Portumna Forest Park, Galway

Tales & Trails with Philly McMahon

We took on the Portumna Forest Park Rinmaher Walking Trail in Galway with Dublin footballer and entrepreneur Philly McMahon. We chatted about his successful career in both the sporting and business world, and the amazing philanthropical work he is involved in.

Trail Info

10km
10km
2hrs
2hrs
Moderate
Moderate
Rinmaher Trailhead
Rinmaher Trailhead

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

Located in Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, the Portumna Forest Park Rinmaher Walking Trail is a walk with breathtaking views of Lough Derg and amazing natural diversity.

This 10km loop takes around two hours to complete in full so it’s suitable for those who love exploration and stumbling upon wildlife in its natural habitat.

There are good views along the lakeshore near Rinmaher Point, south towards Terryglass and east towards Portumna Bridge.

Plan Your Trip

Killeshandra Loop, Cavan

Killeshandra Loop, Cavan

Tales & Trails with Maser

We were joined by Dublin artist Al Hester AKA Maser on the Killeshandra Loop in Co. Cavan. During our walk, we chatted about his work which lights up the walls of Dublin, and his most recent project Atelier Maser.

Trail Info

6km
6km
2hrs
2hrs
Easy
Easy
Town Lough
Town Lough

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

The Killeshandra Loop takes you through unspoiled Cavan countryside and dense forestry, broken up by bubbling streams and glimpses of lakes through the trees.

This easy 6km loop takes about 2 hours to complete in full, and while it’s not too taxing, it’s recommended you wear good trekking boots and pack raingear and plenty of water.

Plan Your Trip

The Tramline Loop, Howth

The Tramline Loop, Howth

Tales & Trails with Gavan Hennigan

We took on the Tramline Loop in Howth with extreme environment athlete Gavan Hennigan. We talked about his love of nature, adventure and why he chose a life where he puts himself on the toughest terrains known to man.

Trail Info

7km
7km
2hrs
2hrs
Easy
Easy
Howth Dart Station
Howth Dart Station

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Video

Route Map

Trail Summary

The Tramline Loop in Howth is one of the most spectacular and breathtaking cliff walks in the country.

This walk starts and ends at Howth Dart station and takes in incredible views of Dublin Bay as well as Ireland’s Eye, Lambay Island, and the iconic Baily Lighthouse as you follow the coastal path along the towering cliff’s edge.

This 7km loop takes around an hour and a half to complete in full, with plenty of opportunities to take a break and soak in the far-reaching sea views.

It is a gentle loop, with very little incline, but with steep cliff edges.

Plan Your Trip

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