A hiking or cycling short break is a great way to explore Ireland this year with the family and reinvigorate the body and mind.
With #Staycation2020 happening in Ireland this year, we’ve created some brand new hiking and cycling short breaks in Ireland to suit all ages and abilities.
Here we choose our top 3 hiking and cycling short breaks in Ireland:
1. Wicklow Way Hiking Short Break
The Wicklow Way is a 7-day walking trail from Bunclody to Dublin through the Wicklow Mountains, otherwise known as the ‘Garden of Ireland’.
If you have limited time then you can consider walking the last 3 days of the Wicklow Way from Glendalough to Dublin.
Starting in the early-Christian monastic settlement of Glendalough, the route will take you over Paddock Hill and past Lough Dan to the village of Roundwood.
Your second walking day will take you over some stunning trails and after a few kilometers, you will reach the viewing point over Lough Tay which is one of the iconic images of the Wicklow Way.
Here you will also find a memorial to J.B. Malone who was the main driving force behind the creation of the Wicklow Way.
After this point, the route climbs to cross the saddle of Djouce mountain before descending to a stunning viewpoint over Powerscourt Waterfall.
The third and final walking day will over the saddle of Prince Williams Seat and close to Two Rock Mountain.
As you make your way downhill from here you will get fantastic views over the city of Dublin before you complete your walk in the beautiful surroundings of Marlay Park.
Prices start at €300 PPS for 4 Nights. For more details: Wicklow Way Hiking Short Break
2. Causeway Coast Way Hiking Short Break
If you are looking for a slightly easier walk than the Wicklow Way, then a 3-day trip from Ballycastle to Portstewart along the Causeway Coast Way is perfect for you.
Located on the northern coast of County Antrim, Ballycastle is a busy little town with views over Rathlin Island and across the Irish Sea to the Mull of Kintyre in Scotland.
The town is also famous for the Auld Lammas Fair which is held there every August.
From Ballycastle, the hike will take you by the world-famous Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge which is not for the faint-hearted!
After spending the night in Ballintoy, you will begin your second day’s walk by traveling by Ballintoy Harbour which is better known to Game of Thrones fans as Pyke in the Iron Islands.
The walk from here will take you past the ruins of Dunseverick Castle to the geological wonder that is the Giants Causeway.
A visitor centre here which was opened in 2012 gives a great insight into the history and culture of the area.
If you have some time to spare why not walk along the greenway to Bushmills or better still, take the small steam railway to the town, where you can visit the Bushmills Distillery, which is the oldest whiskey distillery in the world.
The final day will continue along the coast through the towns of Portballintrae and Portrush to the Victorian seaside resort of Portstewart.
Prices start at €440 PPS for 4 Nights. For more details: Causeway Coast Way Hiking Short Break
3. Great Western Greenway Cycling Short Break
The Great Western Greenway is a traffic-free cycling and walking trail which follows the route of the Great Western Railway which was closed in 1937.
The Greenway, which was fully re-opened in 2011 is one of the most popular short break destinations for people looking for a safe, family-friendly cycling route.
The Greenway Cycling short break route begins in the beautiful, bustling town of Westport.
Depending on the distance you wish to cycle, there are lots of different options available.
Our recommendation would be to cycle from Westport, through the town of Newport and the village of Mulranny.
From Mulranny you can follow the Wild Atlantic Way along a route known as the ‘Spanish Coast Road’ to Achill Sound.
The road owes its name to the number of ships that were wrecked along this coast during the Spanish Armada of 1588.
On your second day, you can explore Achill Island and its many beaches, including the sublime Keel beach.
After staying in the village of Keel you will make your way back to Achill Sound and from here you can follow the Greenway back to Mulranny.
Prices start at €340 PPS for 4 Nights. For more details: Great Western Greenway Cycling Short Break