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Family Friendly Walks in Ireland

Want to know the ideal way to spend time with the family? Well I will let you into a little secret…walking! What better way to get all the family out and about together than a family walking expedition.

Whether you are on holiday or living in Ireland, it is a great day out for all the family and it doesn't cost a penny. Walking is good for you and releases feel good endorphins, putting everyone in a good mood. It is a win, win situation.

I know if you suggested walking to the youngsters, there might be a few moans and groans initially. But once they are out and about, they will realise there is so much more to this outing. It’s all about picking the right walks and if you do, you’ll see fabulous scenery, plenty of wildlife and interesting historic ruins. It'll be fun exploring the area and sure, why not stop for a picnic en route?

Drewstown Woods - Girly Bog Loop

Drewstown Woods - Girly Bog Loop in Co Meath is graded as an easy walk and is 6km in length. The loop covers a variety of landscape of forest and bogland and has been developed as an Eco walk with interpretive panels throughout. Completing the trail should take about two hours and you will see a wonderful array of bird-life, plants and animals along the trek. Important archaeological finds were made in years gone by including swords, jewellery, trumpets and human bodies. Interestingly, these artefacts would have been preserved by the acid nature of the bog.

Jenkinstown Wood Loop

Jenkinstown Wood Loop is just a ten minute drive from Kilkenny City and was once part of a large estate. The house has long gone, but there are remnants of the 1870 parkland that have survived, including trees called Chinese Necklace Poplars. This is another great family friendly walk which is graded as easy. It will only take an hour and a half to complete and is about 4km long. Relax and enjoy the beauty of this wonderful parkland. The youngsters will have the opportunity to feed deer in the enclosed park. Wildlife  includes foxes, badger, stoats and both red and grey squirrels.  The woods are also home to pheasants, ravens, long-eared owls and bats that reside in the old church. There are picnic tables within the park so that you can sit down, have a bite to eat and marvel at your picturesque surroundings.

Oak Park Loop

Oak Park Loop in Carlow is another walking trail that is not too taxing. Graded as easy, it is 4km in length and will take about an hour and half to complete. This walk takes you around the scenic location of the lake, where you will see swans and ducks in their natural habitat.  Stroll amongst beech, ash, Scots pine and larch trees and enjoy the extensive range of ferns, mosses and woodland flora. Oak Park is a lovely location with a range of wooded beauty spots.

Clare Island– Fawnglass Loop

Clare Island– Fawnglass Loop is located on Clare Island off the coast of Mayo. This walk lies at the entrance of Clew Bay and is 3km in length. It is graded as easy and will take about an hour and fifteen minutes to complete. The scenery is outstanding with a spectacular backdrop of the Clare Island clifftops. The island is rich in archaeological remains of the Neolithic and the Bronze Ages. Rare medieval wall-paintings can be viewed in the 14th century Cistercian Abbey, which is well known for its rare medieval roof paintings. A ferry crossing to the island takes twenty minutes and runs at regular intervals.

So, if you are looking for a perfect day out that won’t break the bank, and that all the family will enjoy, then look no further than a leisurely walk around some of the most scenic locations in Ireland. Why not stay in the area a bit longer and book yourself into a Walkers Welcome B&B?

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Posted: 20 Mar 2013 by Claire Regan | with 0 comments

Tags: Walking, Walking Trails

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