We’ve had great feedback on our Irish walking series such as Pilgrim Trails part 1 and part 2 and our top Wicklow walks.
Now we’ve selected three walks in Ireland that are suitable for buggies and the little ramblers of the future that rest inside. Grab your good solid buggy with suitable tyres and enjoy these four trails in Dublin, Cork and Roscommon.
Distance: 4 km
Duration: 1 hr 20 mins
Start Location: Ardgillan Castle Car Park
End Location: Ardgillan Castle Car Park
Parking: Ardgillan Castle Car Park
Co-ordinates: X: 53.350624 Y: -6.092401
Nestled in between Balbriggan and Skerries in North County Dublin, Ardgillan Castle and its surrounding grounds boasts stunning open spaces and incredible views of the Irish Sea. Although there are 200 acres to explore on the estate, there’s a buggy-friendly 4 km loop walk that takes in the main country house, the walled gardens and runs parallel to the train tracks beside the water.
There’s even an overhead walkway that crosses the train tracks and grants walkers access to the beach. You’ll find no shortage of picnic areas at Ardgillan, but it’s the worst kept secret for a summer’s day, so get there early to stake your claim on a perfect spot to put the blanket down.
Starting at the car park, head north for 200 metres, exiting from the northwest corner of the car park. Take the left fork in the path and continue on for another 230 metres, once again turning left, and follow the curve before the route adjusts north and heads towards the walled gardens after 500 metres.
From the walled gardens you can head northeast and exit through the woods. Alternatively, you can head east to the front of the castle and follow the route that runs parallel to the woods. From here you just need to head 500 metres northeast to reach the route that runs alongside the train track. Enjoy the 800 metres straight stretch, before joining the path up the gentle hill towards Ardgillan Castle. Head south west for 450 metres to reach the car park from here.
Please be advised that the terrain of this walk is somewhat more challenging than others with several steep inclines on the route and may be best undertaken with an “off road” buggy.
Distance: 2.4 km
Duration: 50 mins
Start Location: Doneraile House and Tea Rooms
End Location: Doneraile House and Tea Rooms
Parking: Doneraile House car park
Co-ordinates: X: 52.216374 Y: -8.583182
Rich in both history and natural beauty, a trip to Doneraile House in Co. Cork, makes for a fantastic day out.
The main house was founded by the St Leger family in the 17th century and is understood to have been a place of political and administrative power in Munster. A walk from the house across the front lawn and off into the many acres of gardens will transport you to a time when the Lord of the Manor was a person of high importance in the local area, partly as the family who owned estates of this size were usually the principle sources of employment. Sound familiar? Well that could be because it sounds like the workings of a real life Downton Abbey.
Guided tours from local historians can unlock even more insights into the back story of Doneraile House, while the tea rooms offer an opportunity to take a break from exploring the grounds. Ask locals if you dare about the origins of the curse of Doneraile.
The sprawling grounds of Doneraile House allow ramblers with buggies to stroll at a leisurely pace, taking in any route they choose. To start you off, we’ve assembled an easy 2.4 km loop route that can be squeezed into a passing visit.
Starting at the main house, follow the trail away from the house heading north east for 170 metres. Turning right, follow the path that heads south through the main open space in front of the castle. After 200 metres the trail cuts through the trees before heading down to the water. Enjoy the straight run along the water’s edge for 300 metres before crossing the open greenery and joining a path that heads north and brings walkers parallel to the woods. The first right turn takes you east and crosses the Awbeg River. The next left turn brings you towards the most northerly tip of the loop after 300 metres. Take a left at the junction of paths and head south, over the meandering river once more and back towards the house.
Type: Non Loop
Duration: 2 hours
Start Location: Lough Key Activity Centre
End Location: Lough Key Activity Centre
Parking: Lough Key Activity Centre
Co-ordinates: 53.984699 -8.233373
Situated on the southern shore of Lough Key in Co. Roscommon, Lough Key Forest and Activity Park has hosted countless holiday makers from home and abroad for decades. The location is famous for its water sports, family camping facilities and walking trails and caters for those staying over one or more nights and day-trippers alike.
There’s a family friendly walking trail that runs through the woods and skirts the lake shore before returning back to the activity centre. The trail sticks to paths that are suitable for kids’ bikes and side-carriers, meaning it should be a good fit for buggies with suitable wheels.
Starting at the activity centre, head east for 500 metres and follows the trail in the woods. The path continues east for another 700 metres before turning north. For the next 1 km the route follows the coastline before returning east so that walkers can cross the bridge onto the tombolo. Once walkers have crossed over, the trail does a circle of the tombolo before returning back over the bridge. Head south for 500 metres and re-join the trail you started on. 300 metres east will take you out of the woods and back towards the activity centre.
Whatever your level of experience, make sure that you know how to stay safe. Read our Essential Guide To Walking Safety before you head off on your next walk.
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Disclaimer: Walkers use these tips entirely at their own risk. No responsibility can be accepted by landowners or by Ordnance Survey Ireland, for any loss, damage or injury caused or sustained during walks.