If we listed all the appeals of Ireland, we’d be here all day. Suffice it to say, the island nation is chock full of hearty food, historic sights, and stellar music. Not to mention its rolling green hills are a sight to behold. But where should one go to behold such sights? That’s the topic we’re touching on today. If you find yourself around Dublin, these five spots are the perfect places to get in some exercise, and appreciate the beauty of Ireland while you’re at it.
Here are 5 places to hike near Dublin, Ireland
Hill of Tara
The Hill of Tara lies a short drive from Dublin Airport. Instead of exciting hikes, the hill is tailor-made for afternoon strolls. There’s plenty of parking nearby, as well as snacks to savor along the journey. On a clear day, you can view vast swathes of the Irish countryside from atop the hill. Its many monuments are worth admiring, too, including the Mound of the Hostages and the Lia Fáil standing stone. On top of all that, the site holds historical significance; according to legend, Tara was the seat of power for the High Kings of Ireland for hundreds of years.
There are multiple ways to experience Tonelagee Mountain. The most popular route takes roughly three to four hours, spanning from Glenmacnass Waterfall to Tonelagee’s peak. Alternatively, you can embark on a hike from the Wicklow Gap up Tonelagee’s shoulder in about two to three hours. Either way, you’re in for a magical experience. Also, make sure you stop and snap a photo if you’re passing by Lough Ouler – Ireland’s famous heart-shaped lake.
A trip to Loughcrew won’t soon be forgotten. For one, the area boasts the tallest hill in County Meath, measuring approximately 276 metres high. It’s a quick trek to the top, though, where you can gaze out on the lush green landscape that surrounds it. And that’s not all; Loughcrew also holds tombs dating back thousands of years, some of which are marked with stunning megalithic art. If you’re in love with ancient history, this is a prime spot to experience it first-hand.
Located near the titular fishing village, Howth Cliff is one of the most breathtaking spots in Ireland. There are multiple routes of varying lengths to take, making the spot accessible for all sorts. You can pack your own snacks, or swing by Howth Market to sample local fare before you set off. Highlights of the trip include Baily Lighthouse, built in 1814, and gorgeous views of Dublin Bay. Just make sure you watch where you’re going; there’s nothing standing between you and the cliff face.
If you’re looking for a hike that’s both exciting and exhausting, look no further than Lugnaquilla. At 925 metres tall, you’ll only find higher mountains in County Kerry. You’ll want a whole day to tackle Lugnaquilla; transit from Dublin takes about ninety minutes, while the hike itself might last anywhere from four to six hours. To boot, certain parts of the climb will demand delicate maneuvering. When you’ve reached the summit, and you’re looking out on Sugar Loaf and the Wicklow Mountains, though, you’ll know every second of the trek was ultimately worth it.