Glendalough

I have spent many great days out at Glendalough and walking in the surrounding hills. Glendalough is about one hour by bus or car from Dublin. There are a couple of different routes to get here – see the Glendalough tours page for directions. Glendalough has become famous in part to St Kevin, however it … Read moreGlendalough

Walking Holidays in Ireland

Mourne MountainsThis is an unashamed plug for a friend who runs a walking holidays company.  Macs Adventures arrange hill walking tour and cycling holidays all over Europe.  Being a bit of a hill walker myself this gets my interest.

However I first thought when looking at walking holidays – Why would I pay for someone to arrange this for me?  I am the eternal student, in my head anyway, and I think about the cost of things.  But on second thoughts I discovered that I am not so right in this.

For about the same price of doing it all myself, phoning dozens of Bed and Breakfasts and trying to get a reasonable price, having one that is the right distance from the last one – so that I get a good long walk during the day, and having a B&B that caters to hill walkers – well I begin to see the sense in having someone else do all this work for me.

For example, if you are walking the West Highland Way in Scotland, you have to sit down and work out how far you intend to walk each day and if there is a B&B at the point you want to stop.  The other point is the rucksack.  Why carry you own all day, when included in the holiday you can have someone ferry it to your next stop and all you have to carry is a reasonably light daypack.

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Mourne Mountains Hostel

Getting a bit tired of paying way over the odds for weekends cottage rentals we decided to try a hostel last weekend.  I managed to find Cnocnafeola a hostel in the Mourne Mountains on the internet.  I wonder how we used to find places pre-internet, for so many things now I along with millions of others automatically turn on the computer to research any number of things.

I had forgotten the pleasures of staying in hostels.  One of the great things is chatting to other people.  One of the awful things about hostels is also other people, but more of that later.  I always find it a bit difficult when I go walking somewhere I haven’t been before.  It can be hard to know the best routes, on Friday evening I got talking with some guys who knew the area well and I got some great advice for starting points for some loops.  The other great thing about this hostel was the maps and routes in every room.  They have a folder with ten of the most walked routes in the area with full descriptions and maps, many others could take note of this it was a great help.

mournhostel

One of the first things to note is how much hostels have changed over the last 15 – 20 years.   No more cleaning the hostel yourself in the morning.  I used to always find this part a bit strange – you would pay whatever it was to stay over night, but on top of that everyone would have to clean part of the hostel in the morning, ah the 1980’s.

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Shopping in Dublin

Henry Street is located just off O’Connell Street (Dublin’s main thoroughfare) right in the heart of the city. If heading north on O’Connell Street, just take a left at ‘The Spire’ and you’re there! Henry Street is definitely the place to go if you want to shop ’til you drop, as it’s literally overflowing with … Read moreShopping in Dublin