Irish Nature

Sep 22, 2012

We were in for a long weekend in Dublin, but figured that we’d have enough time to take a day to explore the national park just outside of the city. So we rented a car and hit the road towards Wicklow Mountains National Park, and eventually its own little treasure- Glendalough.

Shortly after getting out of Dublin the road took us right through some lovely Irish countryside: spectacular valleys with rivers, lakes and hills, farms with old grey stone houses surrounded by countless sheep, sun striking through the clouds every now and then, and all this polished with the autumn glow.  As we followed the Old Military Road through this gorgeous scenery, we pulled over frequently to take in the views and snap some photos, and occasionally just to avoid running over some stubborn group of sheep…

It’s really no wonder that a number of famous movies such as PS. I Love You has been filmed around this area considering the raw and pristine beauty of the surroundings. Arriving to Glendalough (refers to the two lakes) was pretty out of ordinary: monastic ruins with ancient Celtic crosses, stone chapels and towers all with a stunning backdrop of mystic, and somewhat rainy, mountains. 

We made our way towards the first (lower) lake and continued till the second one, which is way bigger. The weather kept changing faster than we could walk, and eventually we just had a smaller tour along the bigger lake before getting in the middle of a downpour. As soon as we got back closer to the car, it started really coming down heavily and so, we were pretty happy with the choice of turning back…

Although we could’ve spent so much more time walking or hiking around the lakes, we equally enjoyed the drive back as we took the route along the seaside. We stopped on few occasions, checked out some villages and eventually returned back to Dublin for a long awaited treat- what else than the perfect pint of Guinness!

All in all, if you’re ever planning to visit Dublin for more than a weekend, be sure to get on four wheels and head to this national park that’s practically right outside of the town! You won’t regret it…


Tip: Follow the scenic Old Military Road (R115, Kilakee Road) till Laragh, where you can turn to Glendalough.

Some Highlights of Old Military Road
Lough Bray Lower- lake and views around surrounding mountains, great hiking possibilities!
- Crossing River Liffey, Cloghoge Brook and River Inchavore- all such lovely riversides. I loved the fact that parts of this park were fields (probably full of flowers during early summer?) and parts of it was just plain forest area…
- Intersecting with River Glenmacnass & its waterfall- enchanting views down to the green valley! Here we figured out a theory that this river must contain the secret ingredient for Guinness, I swear the water looked just like the beer- from its color to its creamy texture- not kidding! 


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