Walking Hiking

Wales & Wicklow – Guided Walking Tour – 8 Days

Guided Walking Tour – Wales & Wicklow

‘A tour that combines two Celtic Nations to make one great hiking adventure!’

We combined two of our most successful hiking destinations, the Wicklow Mountains and Snowdonia National Park in North Wales, into a spectacular 8-day walking experience of two cultures, two histories, and two landscapes. This is a great hiking trip to observe the differences as well as the similarities between these two ancient Celtic regions and all they have to offer.

For our time in Wales, we will stay in Old Colwyn Bay, right outside of the Snowdonia National Park. The National Park is the second largest in the UK with 2,171 protected square kilometres (838 square miles) of oak woodlands, wild flowing rivers, cascading waterfalls, tranquil lakes, rocky mountains and moorland. The Park has some of the best walks in Britain; all dominated by Mount Snowdon, the highest mountain in England, Ireland, and Wales at 1085m (3560 ft). Whether you love nature, the great outdoors, culture or history, Wales has it all.

Our second half of the adventure takes place in the Wicklow Mountains. We will be staying just outside of the famous and majestic Glendalough, a seat of ancient culture and education. Wicklow holds a proud tradition of walking aided by the presence of the “Wicklow Way”, the oldest way-marked trail and the largest National Park in Ireland. The National Park protects some of Europe’s oldest peat bogs, heather-clad mountains, broad-leafed woodlands and native mammal species. After a few days walking here you will understand why the county has earned the title ‘The Garden of Ireland’.

 

Tour Pricing & Dates

8 Day Tour €1,045 per person sharing
Sunday to Sunday
Single € 245
Tour Dates 2018 Saturday 4th August to Saturday 11th August 2018
Tour Grade Easy to Moderate
Accommodation Family Operated Guesthouses
BOOKING BOOK THIS TOUR

Video

Map

Itinerary

Day 1 / Dublin to Wales
Pickup at the Dublin Airport at 12.00pm, then off to the ferry port for the journey across the water to Holyhead Wales. Alternatively, you can meet us in Wales. The ferry is approximately 3 hours and then we drive for 1 hour north to Old Colwyn Bay. After settling in to our accommodation we will seek out our week’s first local culinary experience.
Day 2 / Seaside Resorts & Ancient History
Our first walk begins in the coastal town of Llandudno, one of Britain’s finest Victorian seaside resorts, and works around the Great Orme peninsula for fascinating views of mountains over the ocean. We will explore the world’s only publicly open Bronze Age copper mine, first mined over 3,500 years ago and visit one of the finest examples of fortress architecture in the world at the walled town of Conwy. Conwy castle, with 22 towers and nearly a mile of battlements wall, was built by Edward the 1st in 1283 during the conquest of Wales. Distance: 10 km/6 miles, Ascent: 207 m/620 ft
Day 3 / Peaceful Valleys
Beginning at the foothills of Moel Siabod, Y Glyderau and Y Carneddau in the cosy village of Capel Curig we follow an old pass through the mountains and down into the peaceful valley of Cornel. We will walk through Hendre Forest and come around to the once natural lake Llyn Cowlyd. In the 19th century the lake was made into a reservoir for the region. Our homeward track is along the water, around the base of Pen Llithrig and back to Capel Curig. Distance: 16 km/10 miles, Ascent: 580 m/1740 ft
Day 4 / The Snowdon Challenge
The climb up the tallest mountain in Ireland, Wales, and England is a challenge but you will feel an amazing sense of accomplishment atop its summit. On a clear day we will also have incredible sweeping views. We make our assent on the Pyg Track and either walk down or return using the old sightseers’ railway. The railway has been running for over 100 years, a modern replacement for the ponies previously used to carry visitors to the summit. The Pyg Track is an old miner’s track now well maintained by the National Trust leading trekkers from Pen-Y-Pass to the summit. After today’s walk we will all deserve a pint, or three! Distance up the Pyg Track and down to Llanberis: 13 km/6.5 miles, Ascent: 727 m/2181 ft.
Day 5 / Swallow Falls & Trefriw Woollen Mills
Our final day in Wales is a short nature walk to the famous and lovely Swallow Falls in Betws-y-Code. Here the river Llugwy hurls itself down from the mountains, at its cusp the river is divided by jagged rocks so there are a number of foaming falls. We will have the chance to take a guided tour of the Trefriw Woollen Mills, do a little shopping, and maybe try your own hand at weaving. We then head back to Holyhead to catch the ferry to Ireland and drive South to our new home nestled in the Wicklow Mountains. Distance walked today is approximately 5 km/3 miles, Ascent 150 m/450 ft
Day 6 / Glendalough & The Spinc
We start the day at the famous Glendalough Monastic Settlement founded by St. Kevin in the 6th century. We will have a guided tour of the area to learn its regional and global significance as a former hub of learning in Europe. Its fully intact round tower overlooks the two lakes that gave Glendalough (“Gleann Dá Loch”, The Glen of the Two Lakes) its name. We will follow part of the Wicklow Way, onto Lugduff Mountain for spectacular views of the lakes and surrounding wild hills. Our trail crosses The Spinc, down through a deserted miners’ village and back to Glendalough. Distance: 11.5 km/7.2 miles, Ascent: 410 m/1230 ft
Day 7 / Trooperstown Hill & the Vale of Clara
Starting from our village accommodation our trail leads us through Ballard Forest and up onto Trooperstown Hill. This hill is a hidden gem and on a clear day almost every peak of the Wicklow range and some of the Welsh mountains are visible. At the base of Trooperstown is Footfalls Walking Holidays headquarters but our trail moves the opposite direction to the beautiful Vale of Clara for lunch on the banks of the Avonmore River. After lunch we will follow the Avonmore River through the Vale’s Oak Forest into the town of Rathdrum. We will be picked up in Rathdrum and go to visit the world famous Avoca Woollen Mills original location. Distance: 12.5 km/7.8 miles, Ascent: 430 m/1290 ft
Day 8 / Depart
Depart for Dublin Airport, arriving at 12.30 pm

Included

  • 7 nights bed and breakfast in family run guesthouses with all rooms en-suite/private wash room
  • 5 packed lunches
  • Pickup and return to Dublin Airport
  • Ferry to and from Wales
  • All transport to and from walks and evenings out

Not Included

  • Evening meals
  • Entry fees to Conway Castle
  • Packed lunch on Day 5

Testimonials

  • Dear Christopher, thank you for another wonderful vacation! I really enjoyed seeing another area of your beautiful country. Thank you for leading us on some amazing hikes, and for taking care of everything while we were here. It was a very relaxing week, and we’re going home renewed and rejuvenated. Until we meet again!

    Nicole
  • Christopher, as the official Irish Tourism Board’s representative, it gladdens me to award you the Golden Shamrock, our top tourism award. That last part was bullshit. I had an amazing experience and I am so glad that I got to see Ireland’s most intimate spots. Thank you for a wonderful trip and all of your knowledge and humour. Looking forward to doing another trip together!

    Adam
  • Christopher, thank you for a second tour through your beautiful Ireland. It was another amazing experience of hiking and food and laughter. What a wonderful week and I can’t wait to return soon for another Footfalls tour. Thank you for everything!

    Erin
  • Dear Christopher, thank you so much for another beautiful journey in your Ireland. We loved our first walking holidays with you, so much that we couldn’t wait to do it again! And this second time in Connemara and the Burren Way didn’t disappoint. You make each trip so special with your warmth, quick wit and what I like to think of your Irish spirit. Thank you for another week of memories that I will always treasure, for your friendship and coring.

    Radha
  • Christopher, that was the best! We enjoyed every minute of our adventure in Ireland. You are an awesome tour guide. Thanks so much for a great trip. We really enjoyed ourselves and hope to return soon. We will return!

    Barbara and Michael