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Hiking the Wicklow Way

Clonegal to Dublin

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  • The Wicklow Way
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Crossing the Wicklow Mountains and finishing in Dublin city, the beautiful Wicklow Way is Ireland’s classic hiking trail. Starting in the picturesque village of Clonegal, on the Wexford-Wicklow-Carlow border, The Wicklow Way takes walkers through pretty little Irish country small towns and villages where you can experience authentic Irish hospitality.

This is one of the great trails you can enjoy while hiking in Ireland. You will follow peaceful paths through ancient forests and open mountain trails to Glenmalure, Ireland’s longest glacial valley, enjoying spectacular mountain views. Glendalough Valley, in the heart of the Wicklow Mountains National Park, is one of the highlights of this walking tour both for its cultural importance and natural beauty. Step back in time in Glendalough with its 6th century monastic site and beautiful lakes. As the trail ascends you will be able to spot Lough Dan and Lough Tay, the lakes where popular TV series ‘Vikings’ is filmed. The walk finishes in the Victorian gardens of Marlay Park, 5km from Dublin’s lively city centre. There is something for everybody in Dublin, from festivals, markets and a lively night life to plenty of culture and heritage. Don’t miss Trinity College impressive library which houses The Book of Kells, Ireland’s most famous manuscript.

Walkers on The Wicklow Way will be following a variety of trails from quiet country roads (boreens) to forests, mountain paths and bogs. The terrain can be demanding in sections but achievable for walkers with average fitness. If you do take on the challenge, you will be rewarded with fantastic scenery and a wealth of history, as well as legendary Irish warmth and hospitality. This was the first way marked walking trail in Ireland, being formally established in 1980, and remains one of the country’s favourites. It is also part of a European long distance trek: the E8, covering 4,700 km from Cork through Britain, Europe and on to Turkey.

Please see our suggested itineraries below. In the following booking page you can customise your Wicklow Way route (start point, finish point and options that you would like to have).


  • The Wicklow Way – Short Break:
    • 4 days/3 nights. Short break hiking The Wicklow Way from Glendalough to Glencree/Enniskerry, ideal for a long weekend.
  • The Wicklow Way – Highlights:
    • 5 days/4 nights. Discover the best of the Wicklow Way, walking from Glendalough back to Dublin through the Wicklow Mountains National Park.
  • The Wicklow Way – Full Walk:
    • 9 days/8 nights. Walk the full Wicklow Way from Clonegal to Dublin city, staying in our selected accommodation.
  • The Wicklow Way – Guided Tour:
    • 7 days/6 nights. Hike the Wicklow Way from Glenmalure to Dublin city with a like-minded group and experienced guide. Upcoming departures: 28th May (FULL) and 3rd September 2017.

Trip highlights

  • Enjoy a pint of Guinness at 'The Dying Cow' a very special country pub
  • Experience the wilderness and beauty of the Wicklow Mountains
  • Travel back in time at Glendalough's 6th century monastic village
  • Soak up the history and culture of Dublin City

1 Bunclody


Today, you will travel to Bunclody in County Wexford were your accommodation is located in the centre of this lively market town. Bunclody is a small town with roughly 2,000 inhabitants on the Wexford-Carlow border where the rivers Slaney and Clody meet in the valley by the Blackstairs Mountains. At 795m, Mount Leinster is the highest peak, standing sentinel over the valley.

2 Bunclody to Shillelagh - 26km


6H30 | +661m / -723m
After a hearty breakfast you will be transferred to the start of The Wicklow Way in pretty Clonegal. For this first section of the route you will follow the Derry River walking on quiet rural roads, then moving onto mixed forest trails below the summits of Urlands Hill, Moylisha Hill and Raheenakit before reaching Stanakelly cross roads. Here you will find a hidden gem ‘The Dying Cow/Tallons’, a cosy country pub where you can have a light refreshment or a pint of Guinness and enjoy the atmosphere while waiting for a transfer to your accommodation. This is your longest walking day but with very little height gain: a gentle way to ease you into your walking holiday.

3 Shillelagh to Moyne - 18km

Moyne WicklowWay,Irelandways

4H30 | +313m / -208m
Today you have a  shorter day walking The Wicklow Way, to help any achy limbs recover. From the village of Shillelagh, once again you will be walking along winding country roads (boreens), open mountain tracks with fantastic views and forest trails. The mountain trails along Muskeagh Hill will open up awe inspiring views of this lush countryside. Just off the trail to the left between Ballybeg and Ballycumber Lane there is the remnants of an old ring fort. Best seen in the satellite view from Google maps before setting off, just so you know what to be looking out for!

4 Moyne to Glenmalure - 21km


6H |+657m / -734 m
Today the terrain of The Wicklow Way changes and you will be walking mainly on forest paths. These can be a little more challenging especially if there has been any rainfall in the days prior to your ascent, but that is what makes today’s walk all the more rewarding. As you leave Moyne you will start to gain some altitude and you will be amazed by some stunning scenery in the foothills of the Wicklow Mountains.

When you walk through Ballyteige forest you will get your first proper glimpse of Lugnaquilla, the tallest mountain in Leinster. Continuing further along the trail to Carrickashane Woods you will reach a clearing with the best view of Lugnaquilla from the South Prism side (a popular area for mountaineers during the winter months as the moisture rich piety soil freezes allowing them to climb it like you would a frozen waterfall in Scotland or The Alps). Moving into the Aghavannagh valley you will enter the evergreen forest on Slieve Mann before descending into the Glenmalure valley, your picturesque home for the evening.

5 Glenmalure to Glendalough - 14km

Glendalough-Wicklow Way-Ireland Ways

3h30 | +450m / -442 m
You will wake up in the U-shaped glacial valley of Glenmalure, which at over 16km is the longest glacial valley in the UK and Ireland. Today is a short walking day, for good reasons. This will allow you to gain altitude in your own time to make the most of the spectacular scenery in the heart of the Wicklow Mountains and it will also allow you some time to explore the world renowned heritage site of Glendalough, in the heart of the Wicklow Mountains National Park and the most important stop along The Wicklow Way.

Extra Day Glendalough Tour - 12km


You can add an extra day to your Wicklow Way itinerary, allowing yourself to sleep in and have a late breakfast before taking a day off your hike to explore the remains of the 6th century monastic village of Glendalough, once referred to as the ‘centre of learning in Europe’. The highlights of this area include an 8th century, 36m tall, round tower; the 12th century cathedral; an abandoned lead/zinc mine, and the eerie St. Saviours Priory.

6 Glendalough to Roundwood - 15km


3H30 | +661m / -723 m
This is a short and pleasant walking day. You leave the beautiful Glendalough Valley on forest trails as you skirt by the village of Laragh. You can step off The Wicklow Way here if you wish to explore this lively village with a choice of shops, restaurants and bars. From Laragh to Roundwood you will be walking along a mixture of peaceful forest trails, mountain paths and boreens.

Glendalough is the start of the ‘Short Break’  and the ‘Highlight’ tours.

7 Roundwood to Enniskerry - 19km

Lough Te Wicklow Way,

5H30 |+655m / -746 m
This is a lovely section of The Wicklow Way, taking walkers across the tops of mountains with amazing views of both mountains and the coast. As you leave Old Bridge you will be ascending the ridge around Lough Dan looking down on to the location where the television series ‘Vikings’ is filmed. Continuing along here you will have the perfect vantage point to view Loch Tay, a dark brown peaty lake, flanked on one side by a white sandy beach, which resembles a pint of Guinness (fittingly this area is owned by the Guinness family).

From this point you will once again head North, through forest over White Hill and on to the exposed moorland of Djouce Mountain (one of Wicklow’s best know mountains). As you descend off Djouce you will be able to see the Powerscourt estate and its waterfall, before finishing your walk at your accommodation in the Glencree Valley.

Enniskerry is the finish of the ‘Short Break’  tour.

8 Enniskerry to Marley Park - 22km


5H |+546m / -636 m
Another great day walking The Wicklow Way today over mountain tops and along forest tracks. With the city of Dublin beginning to come into view your destination is within reach. When you arrive at the Cairn (a man-made pile or stack of stones at the top of a mountain) at Two Rock, you can see the whole of Dublin City and Bay in one impressive panoramic vista.

From this point it will be all downhill until you reach the beautiful Georgian estate of Marlay Park where The Wicklow Way finishes. Originally Marlay Park was a walled manor house with over 300 acres of land. It is an idyllic location for a tea or coffee before making your way into Dublin city centre.

9 Dublin City


After your breakfast your Wicklow Way walking tour comes to an end. Why not ask the travel consultants about adding an extra night accommodation if you wish to spend some time exploring the historic city of Dublin. Sample a pint after a tour of the Guinness Store House, view the magnificent book of Kells in Trinity College, be magically transported back in time when you visit the National Museum of Ireland or simply relax strolling Saint Stephen’s Green. There is always going on in Dublin: theatre, festivals, markets, concerts… we recommend you spend a couple of days to discover this bustling and lively city.

Hotels and guest houses on The Wicklow Way have been carefully selected for their location, comfort, character, food, and friendliness of the staff. Accommodation displayed is subject to availability and if the hotel/guest house described is not available, we will provide you with one of the same standard of comfort and price.

Bunclody - Standard

Tonight’s accommodation will be a 4 star hotel in the town centre, you will have full use of the pool and gym facilities. You will be staying 6 km from the trail and you will be transferred to the start of The Wicklow Way in the morning.

Shillelagh - Standard

We have chosen this family-run guest house for its character, location and warm hospitality. You will be staying close to The Wicklow Way surrounded by stunning green vistas.

Moyne - Standard

Tonight’s family-run guest house has been chosen for its character and warm hospitality. This guest house has been welcoming The Wicklow Way trekkers for many years, both the host and hostess are avid hill walkers and have a unique insight to the needs of their walking clientèle.

Glenmalure - Standard

This family friendly and family-run hotel has a cosy restaurant and lounge overflowing with atmosphere and old memorabilia paying homage to the area’s rich and colourful history. Open fires and great food with plenty of good comfortable seating add to its interesting character and old world charm. You will be staying right on the trail.


Glendalough - Standard

Our first choice accommodation is an original Victorian building which has been completely refurbished and enlarged, but it remains the haven of tranquillity that it has always been.


Roundwood - Standard

This evening you will be staying in a friendly guest house in a picturesque location on The Wicklow Way. Your hosts will arrange a transfer for you into the market village of Roundwood for dinner and entertainment


Glencree - Standard

This evening you will be staying in a friendly country house in a peaceful idyllic setting with large gardens surrounded by woodland, just minutes from The Wicklow Way. Your hosts will be able to arrange a transfer for you into the charming village of Enniskerry for dinner and entertainment.

Dublin - Standard

We have chosen a modern hotel in the heart of Dublin city centre as your accommodation at the end of your tour with us, along The Wicklow Way. Our hotels will be rated 3 stars or higher, ensuring you get a chance to relax and recharge after your week of walking.

Optional: Talk to the travel specialists about adding extra nights to your stay in Dublin, upgrading your room to a suite or upgrading your hotel to one of our 4 or 5 star properties.

Enniskerry  Average Temperature & Rainfall

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How to Get There

Live information on Rome2Rio. We can also arrange private transfers if you prefer, just ask us.



Dublin Airport 124km:

Step 1: Dublin Airport to Carlow Town | Bus Éireann | Travel time 1H00, outside the main terminal, leaving every hour | Fare €23 return.


Step 1: Dublin Airport to Carlow Town | JJ Kavanagh & Sons | Travel time 1H00, outside the main terminal, leaving every hour | Fare €18 return.

Step 2: Carlow Town to Bunclody | Taxi | Travel time 0H30 | Fare 20 approx one way.

Getting to Bunclody from Dublin Airport via Dublin City Centre:

Step 1: Dublin Airport to Dublin City Centre | Aircoach | Travel time 0H30, leaving every 15-30min | Fare €6 approx. one way.


Step 1: Dublin Airport to Dublin City Centre | Dublin Bus – Bus No.747 | Travel time 0H40, leaving every 15min | Fare €6 one way. (NOTE: This bus also stops at Heuston Train Station).

Step 2: Once on O’Connell Street it is a short walk, tram or taxi ride to Heuston Train Station or Busaras Bus Depot.

Step 3: Dublin City Centre (Busaras Bus Depot) to Bunclody | Bus Éireann | Travel time 2H30, leaving 3 times a day: morning, mid day and evening | Fare €20 return.



Dublin Airport 74km:

Step 1: Dublin Airport to Dublin City Centre | Aircoach | Travel time 0H30, leaving every 15-30min | Fare €6 approx. one way.


Step 1: Dublin Airport to Dublin City Centre | Dublin Bus – Bus No.747 | Travel time 0H40, leaving every 15min | Fare €6 one way. (NOTE: This bus also stops at Heuston Train Station).

Step 2: Once on O’Connell Street it is a short walk, tram or taxi ride to Lowwe Leeson Street.

Step 3: Dublin City Centre (Lower Leeson Street) to Glendalough | St Kevin’s bus | Travel time 1H30, leaving twice a day (11:15 and 18:00) | Fare €13 one way.


Marlay Park

Dublin Airport 33km:

Step 1: Marlay Park (Grange Wood, Stop 2970) to Dublin City | Dublin Bus – Bus No.16 | Travel time 0H45 from Marlay Park, departing every 30 minutes | Fare €3.05 one way.

Step 2: Dublin City Centre to Dublin Airport | Aircoach | Travel time 0H30, leaving every 15-30min | Fare €6 approx. one way.


Step 2: Dublin City Centre to Dublin Airport | Dublin Bus – Bus No.747 | Travel time 0H40, leaving every 15min | Fare €6 one way. (NOTE: This bus also stops at Heuston Train Station).


More information:

Air Coach – Airport Transfer.

Bus Eireann – Intercity Bus.

JJ Kavanagh & Sons – Intercity Bus.

Dublin Bus – Dublin City Bus.

St Kevin Bus – Glendalough Bus.