Stroll from Doolin to the Cliffs of Moher – it takes lower than two hours

Weekend Stroll: There aren't any roads to this lovely Donegal seashore

Stroll from Doolin to the Cliffs of Moher – it takes lower than two hours

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It is the mom of all Irish cliff walks. So why hadn’t I heard of it?

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It is the mom of all Irish cliff walks. So why hadn’t I heard of it?

Earlier than travelling to Clare a number of weeks in the past, I tweeted for suggestions. The Cliffs of Moher featured closely… as I knew they’d.

I used to be stunned, nevertheless, to be taught that you do not have to park up and traipse throughout the highway with hordes of vacationers to come across them.

Nope, there is a technique to have a reduce of this shoreline to your self.

The Cliffs of Moher Coastal Stroll stretches round 20km from Doolin to Liscannor, and has been developed along with native landowners who granted permission for walkers to cross their land. One among these, farmer and historian Pat Sweeney (doolincliffwalk.com), gives guided walks… if that is your cup of tea.

You are able to do shorter stretches – from the Cliffs to Hag’s Head (5km), for instance, or from Doolin to the Cliffs (8km), which is the stroll we select, setting out from Fisher Avenue.



On the coastal path... Photo: Carsten Krieger / Fáilte Ireland
On the coastal path... Photo: Carsten Krieger / Fáilte Ireland


On the coastal path… Photograph: Carsten Krieger / Fáilte Eire

Strolling from Doolin to the Cliffs of Moher

A kilometre or so is all it takes to get to the primary stile, to really feel the gravel underfoot, and drink within the first vivid views of the Atlantic Ocean.

It is immediately immersive. Even from the comparatively low heights at this stage, you possibly can see the swell rolling in below the floor, rising into waves that thump thunderously off the rocks beneath. You begin to style salt in your lips.

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A number of occasions, I cease and stand in awe on the uncooked energy, stretching in sheets of blue, white and inexperienced all the best way to the Aran Islands… and past. The skies are blue, dabbed with skirting pillows of cloud, however I think about it could possibly be simply as dramatic on gray days.

The Wild Atlantic Manner is not named for its light nature, in any case.

The trail is brilliantly waymarked all through and, because it strikes south, you begin gaining peak. In the event you fancy a better hike, set out from the Cliffs – that course is generally downhill, with Doolin because the ending line.

Smaller moments of magic punctuate the massive sights. We spot a raven’s nest below a rocky overhang, and anticipate the grownup fowl to fly in with meals for its chicks. There are the husks of ruined cottages and buildings in a steep discipline. We step throughout a stream on large, flat flagstones. Fairly clumps of pink sea thrift (or ‘sea lollipops’ as we used to name them) bop within the wind.



The cliff walk from Doolin. Photo: Fáilte Ireland
The cliff walk from Doolin. Photo: Fáilte Ireland


The cliff stroll from Doolin. Photograph: Fáilte Eire

Because the cliffs draw nearer, the gradient will get tougher, however the views repay… and consider me, irrespective of what number of pictures you have seen, your jaw will drop.

At this stage, a security observe.

The draw in the direction of the sting is weirdly hypnotic, and you will find your self instinctively scrambling for smartphones or cameras as you step ahead, but it surely’s important that you do not get too shut. Indicators warn walkers to not depart the paths, there are not any limitations or seaward fences, and other people have misplaced their lives alongside this coast.

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Sudden gusts of wind (which may change course from onshore to off-shore with out discover) or mis-steps might show deadly. Even so, we cross individuals straying queasily near the overhangs, a few of them with telephones held up in entrance of their faces.

You do not realise how shut you’re.

The ultimate third of the stroll brings the cash photographs. Sea stacks, punching from the ocean like sharks’ fins. The 700-foot drops earlier than O’Brien’s Tower. The teeming ocean, with boats beneath bobbing like toys in an enormous tub.

As we get nearer to the Cliffs of Moher themselves, pods of individuals pop up extra usually. We return to civilisation. At one level, hundreds of hair-bands are tied to a fence. Why? Mementos, possibly. However they litter the pristine panorama.

Lastly, we attain O’Brien’s Tower, the viewing factors and customer centre. Right here, you possibly can allow your self a smug grin as you combine with the crowds, and head for a well-earned cuppa.

I hadn’t heard of it a number of weeks in the past. I am telling everybody now.

Have to know

Stage: Reasonable to tough. As a consequence of uncovered cliff edges and doubtlessly dramatic climate adjustments (together with wind, rain and fog), this stroll shouldn’t be advisable for youngsters below 12. Canines are usually not allowed.

Distance: 8km. Permit two hours with picture stops. Plan your return – by bringing two automobiles and leaving one at every finish, for instance, or taking the shuttle bus between Doolin and the Cliffs (examine occasions prematurely; cliffsofmohercoastalwalk.ie).

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A chunk close by: In the event you stroll from Doolin, you possibly can seize a cuppa and a chunk on the customer centre café. Going the wrong way, cease into Gus O’Connor’s pub or Resort Doolin. The lodge made our Fab 50 listing of the perfect locations to remain in Eire this yr, and brews its personal Dooliner ale.

Extra information: cliffsofmoher.ie; wildatlanticway.com.

NB: Your Strolling Guidelines

Security comes first on a stroll, irrespective of how straightforward. Verify the climate, depart phrase of the place you’re going and once you’ll be again, and pack good.

A completely charged cellphone, water and snacks, layers of acceptable clothes and durable footwear are important for these walks. Deliver a bag for garbage, and pop a pair of fresh sneakers and socks within the boot for afterwards. You may thank us later!

Accountable walkers all the time respect non-public property.

Here is an inventory of Eire’s 30 greatest spring walks.

Listed here are seven superb walks for slightly additional journey.

See irishtrails.ie for extra nice walks.

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