Sheep’s Head Way – 8 Days
Sheep’s Head Way – 8 Day – Self-Guided Walking Holiday
The “Sheep’s Head Way” Peninsula or the ancient name of Muintir Bháire, the people of Bháire; is the middle of the three peninsulas in the south-west of county Cork, Ireland’s largest county, along part of the Wild Atlantic Way. It must be the least visited part of Cork and this contributes to the wonderful presence of such a unique place. The narrow finger of land is part of the Old Red Sandstone system, when the mountainous coastal region was split into several peninsulas as the sea level rose between 4000 – 7000 years ago. The rounded hills (drumlins) are the evidence of glaciation, leaving fertile sheep pastures dominated by a spine of low hills. The highest point on the peninsula is Seefin Hill at 345 m. At its best in 1844 the peninsula had a population 8340, but now has just 1300 residents.
Bantry Harbour, sheltered by Whiddy Island, is one of west Cork’s oldest ports, and was the scene of an attempted French invasion in 1796. Bantry House, built in 1771 for the first Earl of Bantry, houses a fine art collection, and is open to the public. The town remains a bustling market town and the main shopping town of the south-west. A renowned Farmer’s Market takes place every Friday morning in the main square. Look out for the West Cork Fuchsia Brand, a marketing initiative to brand the huge variety of local produce that both locals and newcomers to the area manufacture, for the local and international markets.
Tour Pricing & Dates
|8 Day Tour||€575 per person sharing|
|Tour Dates||April to October|
|BOOKING||BOOK THIS TOUR|
- Day 1 / Arrive at Cork Airport and take public transport to Bantry
- It is also possible to arrive into Dublin or Shannon airport but will result in a longer transfer by bus. Bantry town is perfectly located as a place to start your adventure in the southwest of Ireland. It sits in the bay separating the Sheepshead and Beara peninsulas and in the shelter of Whiddy Island.
- Day 2 / Bantry to Glanlough
- On the first day of your walking tour on the Sheeps Head Way you will walk from Bantry to Glanlough overlooking Bantry Bay and Whiddy island. On today’s trail you will walk along a beautiful ridge before making your way down into Glanlough. Distance; 16km, Ascent; 280 m/1148 ft, Approximate walking time; 4.5 hours
- Day 3 / Glanlough to Kilcrohane
- Today’s walk gives you the option of following Gortnakilly ridge up onto Seefin Mountain, the highest point of the peninsula at 345m, or you can take the lower path which also finishes in Kilcrohane village. Distance; 13km, Ascent; 385m, Approximate walking time; 4 hours
- Day 4 / Kilcrohane to Tooreen
- You will follow the wild and rugged coastline at the western extremity of Sheepshead peninsula on the trail today, passing through long abandoned and ruined villages and the Gortavallig Copper Mines. Distance; 14km, Ascent; 110m, Approximate walking time; 4 hours
- Day 5 / Tooreen to Reenmore
- Starting your day walking the southern coastline, with a very short climb, which leads you to a 17th century signal tower, the trail then stays at lower levels winding through farmsteads and ancient town lands on your way to Kilcrohane village. Distance; 16km, Ascent; 200m, Approximate walking time; 4.5 hours
- Day 6 / Reenmore to Durrus
- Durrus, the largest village on the peninsula, is today’s destination and the trail takes you there along undisturbed paths and winding roads. Passing through this area you will see evidence of the extensive activity from pre Christian times, in the form of standing stones, wells and burial grounds’. Distance; 16km, Ascent; 280m, Approximate walking time; 5 hours
- Day 7 / Durrus to Bantry
- On the final leg of your return to Bantry, you move inland from the coastline and ascend Barr na Gaoithe, the Top of the Wind, before meandering back down on small country roads into the town, through the beautiful grounds of Bantry House. Distance; 17km, Ascent; 190m, Approximate walking time; 5 hours.
- Day 8 / Depart
- Depart from Bantry.
- 7 nights B&B
- All accommodation is pre-booked in approved family-run guesthouses with all rooms en-suite
- Detailed route notes and Ordnance Survey maps
- Details on restaurants and places of interest to visit along the way
- Luggage transfers daily while you walk
- All information on trains or buses needed to get to your first accommodation and back at the end of the tour
- Full back up service should you require it while on our tour
- Packed Lunches
- Evening Meals