Gordon Bennett Route
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Bennett Route Map

County Carlow


Walking and cycling are fun ways to enjoy the great outdoors and take in the beautiful scenery of Carlow and its surrounding counties. Some of Ireland's most satisfying walks are to be found in Co. Carlow. Home to three of Ireland's key national walking routes - The Leinster Way, The Wicklow Way and the Barrow Way, the county is blessed with hundreds of kilometres of excellent and varied walking. Experienced walkers will enjoy the invigorating challenge of Carlow's way-marked mountain treks, whilst novices will find peace and tranquillity on peaceful riverside and country walks. The walks featured here are just a sample of the many available to the visitor to Co. Carlow so feel free to wander at will …..

Cyclists are well catered for with Celtic Cycling, based in Bagenalstown who organise leisurely "go-as-you-please" self guided cycling tours through the by-roads and country lanes of counties Carlow, Kilkenny, Waterford and Wexford.

The Barrow Way

The Barrow Way follows the towpath, originally a path alongside the River Barrow to allow the pulling of barges or boats for transport. The ground is level throughout passing good farmland where tillage and cattle farming is predominant. The path offers much of architectural interest to the visitor - bridges, many arched, and pretty lock houses, some still in use. Many interesting historical features are located in close proximity to the river including castles, abbeys, old bridges and derelict mills.

The full length of the Barrow Way from Lowtown to St. Mullins is 113 kilometres (70 miles). One can cover this distance in a single journey in less than a week or explore shorter sections of the walk in a number of easy strolls. Accommodation is available along route and varies from hotels to self-catering and bed & breakfasts. Most accommodation providers are delighted to transport you to and from your starting and finishing points. Towns offer a full range of services while villages have good facilities that are designed to meet the needs of the walker.

STAGE 1 Lowtown - Monasterevin 23 km (14 miles)
STAGE 2 Monasterevin - Athy 23km (14 miles)
STAGE 3 Athy - Carlow 19km (12 miles)
STAGE 4 Carlow to Bagenalstown 16km (10 miles)
STAGE 5 Bagenalstown - Graiguenamanagh 26km (16 miles)
STAGE 6 Graiguenamanagh - St. Mullins 6km (4 miles

The South Leinster Way

The South Leinster Way is a long distance walking route which runs from Kildavin, Co. Carlow to Carrick-on-Suir in Co. Tipperary covering 102 kilometres (64 miles) in length and ascending 1600 metres.

The predominant features in the landscape are Mount Leinster, Brandon Hill and the river valleys of the Barrow, Nore and Suir. This stretch can be comfortably walked in five days but strong walkers can finish it in three days.

STAGE 1: Kildavin - Borris 22km (14 miles)
STAGE 2: Borris - Graiguenamanagh 12km (7 ˝ miles)
STAGE 3: Graiguenamanagh - Inistioge 16km (10 miles)
STAGE 4: Inistioge - Mullinavat 30km (19 miles)
STAGE 5: Mullinavat - Carrick-on-Suir 22km (14 miles)

The Wicklow Way

This route covers a distance of 132km (81 miles) in length commencing in Marley Park, Dublin and finishing in the beautiful village of Clonegal located in the River Slaney valley in the east of the county. A combination of suburban parkland, forest trails, wild and scenic mountain landscape and finally rolling countryside offers a wonderfully varied, 8 to 10 day experience for a hill-walker of average fitness. Variety in buildings and wildlife is a great characteristic of this route with regular sightings of red deer, silka deer, hares, foxes, squirrels and badgers. 2006 marks the 25th anniversary of the foundation of the Wicklow Way with a celebration event planned for Clonegal village on Sunday 14th May.

The Slieve Margy Way is located in the north western corner of Co. Carlow and south-eastern corner of Co. Laois and allows the visitor explore some of the most spectacular scenery in Ireland. The route is a circular network of walking tracks through a number of villages, many in close proximity to Co. Carlow including Graiguecullen, Maganey, Arles, Wolfhill and The Swan. Passing along the banks of the Barrow river, the Slieve Margy Way then takes to the hills rising over 1,000 feet to the top of the Castlecomer Plateau to join the Swan Loop. The Way has been designed to allow walkers join it at any point and walk in either direction. Full map available from Carlow Tourist Office on 059-9131554.

Cycling Holidays with Celtic Cycling, Bagenalstown, Co. Carlow
Celtic Cycling organise self-guided "go-as-you-please", fully supported biking holidays in the South-East of Ireland. The company is based at Lorum Old Rectory in Bagenalstown, one of the most cyclist friendly areas in the country with many traffic-free by-roads meandering through the countryside. Itineraries are planned to ensure visitors have a relaxing holiday with time to explore at leisure and to take in the many places of historical and general interest. Cyclists can choose from 7 or 14 day itineraries with average daily distances of 26-48 kilometres. Accommodation is of a consistently high standard with specially selected family run B&B's or, in the case of the 'Hidden Ireland' tour, family run heritage homes. Tel: + 353 (0) 59 9775282 Fax: 059-9775455
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Attractions By Stages
Ballyshannon To Carlow
Carlow To Athy
Athy To Kildare
Kildare To The Heath
The Heath To Athy

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