Explorer Series 8-Day Guided Northern Ireland Highlights Walk

guidedhike

GUIDED TOUR

Expert Guide on tour for the tour duration.

8 DAYS

DURATION

7 nights stay, 6 days hiking

self-guided-hike

GRADING

Moderate Walks each day – Previous Hiking experience required

From €1,180

“Met new friends, learnt local culture from native residents. IWHB could not have planned it better.”

– Gerard, U.K., 2015

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Explorer Series Guided Walk Northern Ireland & Donegal

Northern Ireland remains as one of Ireland’s most untouched landscapes just waiting to be discovered.  This magical place of scenic beauty, varied landscapes, a rich and colourful history which is home to many film scenes from the hit TV series Game of Thrones.

Scotland is just “over the water” only 12 miles (19kms) across the North Channel and from Fair Head & Murlough Bay, you can see across to the Mull of Kintyre.  Just off the coast of Northern Ireland lies Rathlin Island, a magnificent place boasting one of the UK’s largest seabird colonies and an upside-down lighthouse, only in Ireland!

On your guided hiking holiday you will discover the famous Giant’s Causeway on what must be Ireland’s premier coastal pathway hike.  Moving west, you will then have the opportunity to visit the famous Walls Of Derry, before moving into Donegal and the outstanding Glenveagh National Park.  Add to that, hikes at Slieve League which Europe’s highest sea cliffs, Glencolmcille and Errigal mountain and you have one of the most breath-taking Guided Hiking Holidays in Ireland.

5-Day options available on request.

 

Tour Dates

 

  • Sep 23 – 30

Highlights

  • Carrick-A-Rede rope bridge
  • Glenveagh Castle
  • Slieve League
  • The Giants Causeway
  • Glenveagh National Park
  • Errigal Mountain
  • Glencolmcille

Whats Included?

  • 7 nights stay in an en-suite room at our premium hand-picked accommodations.
  • Delicious Irish breakfast each morning.
  • 6 Picnic Lunches (on hike days only).
  • Four sumptuous evening meals in the region’s top restaurants.
  • 6 days hiking with our local, expert guide who will accompany the group for the duration of the holiday.
  • Courtesy transfers to and from each day’s walking locations and all transport as outlines in the itinerary.
  • Prices are per person sharing. Single Room Supplement – €285.00.

Not Included: Personal drinks, medical expenses or gratuities.

    Above pricing does not include single room supplement.

    Day by Day

    Click the days below to reveal more information.

    Arrive to Portstewart and meet your Guide at your first accommodation on the coast where you spend your first 2 nights.  A courtesy transfer will be offered from Coleraine Bus/Train station at 16.00hrs for those that wish to avail of this.  With time to check in before your Welcome Briefing, your Guide will meet you at 18.00 hours, introduce you to your group & brief you on the coming days of your holiday.  You will then walk to a nearby restaurant for your first dinner together & return later to your accommodation for your overnight.

    After a delicious breakfast your first walk takes east to the famous Carrick-A-Rede rope bridge.  From there, you continue following along the coast to reach the fascinating Giant’s Causeway with its unique rock formations.  With time to read about the ancient history that links this place to Scotland & makes it so fascinating, you complete your walk along the coast.  At the end of your day, a trip to Bushmills Distillery introduces you to the delights of Irish whiskeys.  Return to your accommodation for an evening at your leisure in Portstewart.

    Walk Details Distance: Up to 17kms. Highest point: 150mts. Narrow & grassy trails which can be muddy & stony underfoot, beach & sand dune walking, uneven sections, paved roads & some stepping stones

    Leaving the Antrim Coast after breakfast, we travel west to reach the City of Derry.  Here, we enjoy a short walk around the City walls, learning about the history of this region & the influence that has made Northern Ireland so well known throughout the world.  Continuing west from here, you arrive to the magnificent Glenveagh National Park.  This is a beautiful location and a super place to discover on foot.

    Following a super trail over the hills, your walk starts just outside the village of Churchill & follows West over the shoulder of Gartan Mountain to descend to Lough Beagh and Glenveagh Castle.  On arrival, enjoy some refreshments, time to explore the Castle & gardens before returning to your minivan.

    Walk Details Distance: Up to 9kms at Glenveagh. Highest point: 100mts. Gravel tracks with rocky & uneven sections, stepping stones, board walks & boggy underfoot conditions.

    You then continue your drive to the western coast of Donegal, staying in a beautiful area known as Gweedore with the village of Bunbeg close by. You spend your next 2 nights & enjoy your dinner & overnight here.

    Driving north today, your journey takes you to the impressive Horn Head where you start your walk.  This is a beautiful headland with views across to Tory Island, the Wild Atlantic Way & east towards Malin Head.  For those of you who would prefer a gentler walk today, you have the option to take a boat over to the beautiful & very historical Tory Island.

    Tory Island:  Just beyond Falcarragh, you take your ferry to Tory Island.  Arriving to this very special place, the King of Tory will be happy to greet you and introduce you to the island.  A super walk takes you to the north eastern end of the island where migratory sea birds can be seen in their hundreds.  Before returning to the mainland, you should take the time to discover some of the artistic talents of the islanders with their rich & famous history of painting dating back to the legendary Derek Hill.  Return by ferry back to your minivan & drive back to your accommodation for some free time to discover the delights of Bunbeg & Gweedore.  (Boat journey is approx. 50 mins each way).

    Horn Head: Following the coast along a spectacular trail, this walk takes you close to sea cliffs with wonderful views of nesting birds as you follow west.  From here, you reach the lofty heights of Horn Head and amazing views beyond.  Continuing along the coast, you then return to your minivan via a more inland route and visiting an old Signal Tower along the way.

    Return to your accommodation in the Gweedore region for your overnight & a free evening at your leisure.

    Walk DetailsDistance: Up to 9kms. Highest point: 100mts. Paved roads, gravel tracks with rocky & uneven sections, some off trail & Horn Head walk has rougher underfoot conditions. Exposed cliff edges with no protection on walk.

    Travelling inland from your accommodation, you reach the iconic Errigal Mountain – seen from afar all around this north western region of Ireland.  The surrounding landscape around Errigal is a wild, untamed and beautiful landscape with stunning views over “The Poisoned Glen”, Dunlewy and Muckish Mountain.

    Ascending across open mountain, you reach the impressive Errigal with glorious views all around.  This is a tough climb with tremendous rewards for the effort involved.  At the top, there is a narrow track between the two peaks where you can enjoy the magnificent 360 degree panorama.  Descend the same way to return to your minivan.

    Walk DetailsDistance: Up to 10kms. Highest point: 750mts. Muddy & boggy off trail walk which can be very wet & slippery underfoot. Rocky & slippery towards the top with uneven ground which makes the climb all the more wonderful when you get there.

    Driving south west from here, you then reach the lovely villages of Glenties & Ardara.  You will be staying in either one of these villages for your final 3 nights & will have dinner together tonight.

    :  Today – you travel to the south western corner of this northern region of Ireland to reach the beautiful Glencolmcille.  Right on the coast, this is a place apart with a rich monastic history & also an amazing story of survival in rural Ireland.  The community in this part of Ireland are a resilient and dedicated people and a pleasure to meet & chat to.

    Just outside Glencolmcille, you will start following an old Pilgrim Route around what is locally known as the Turas.  Here you have an array of ancient monuments to see as you learn about the history of this glorious valley.  Following further around the coast to reach the beautiful and sheltered cove known as Port.  From here, a track takes you back over the hills to reach your minivan, where you then continue back to your accommodation in either Ardara or Glenties.   If time allows – you may wish to enjoy some light refreshments in the Folk Village before returning to your accommodation.

    Walk DetailsDistance: Up to 16kms. Highest point: 300mts. Paved roads & gravel tracks, grassy trails, open hillside with rocky & uneven sections that can be wet & boggy underfoot.

     

    Enjoy an evening at your leisure in this lovely part of Donegal as you discover your surrounds.

    Driving to the southern shores of Donegal and overlooking Donegal Bay you reach the magnificent Slieve League.  This is another of Ireland’s pilgrim mountains & offers a breath-taking hike to really impress you for your final walk.

    Your walk begins with a super trail into the hills following the old Pilgrim Route that was once used hundreds of years earlier by many faithful followers.  This was also an access point for those wishing to collect turf from the higher slopes of the surrounding hills.  Continuing south, you then reach the amazing Slieve League & One Man’s Pass.  With time to enjoy the views, your route then follows a very narrow track along high cliffs to reach Bunglass.  With spectacular views all along the way, this tough hike rewards with a terrific sense of achievement and a completion of a circuit that is one of the most spectacular coastal routes in Ireland.  Return to your minivan at the end of your walk and some well earned refreshments in one of the local pubs.

    Walk DetailsDistance: Up to 15kms. Highest point: 550mts. Paved roads, gravel tracks & grassy, muddy trails. Off-trail walking over rough & uneven ground with steps up & down. Exposed cliff edges throughout the walk.

    At the end of your walk, you return to your accommodation for your final farewell dinner together. This is a great way to compare stories, reminisce and enjoy some great food before your onward journeys tomorrow.

    After your final and substantial Irish Breakfast, you will be taken by minivan to reach Donegal town.  From there, a bus service offers transfers to Dublin Airport, Sligo to join a train service, or north to Letterkenny & back to Belfast from there.  If you need assistance for your onward journey plans – please do ask at time of booking & we will be delighted to advise.  Your estimated arrival time to Donegal town is approx. 10am.

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    CONTACT DETAILS

    Ireland Walk Hike Bike
    Collis Sandes House, Co. Kerry, Ireland.

    Tel: +353667186181

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