Europe for Visitors - Home
Home Main Menu

Arrow"Best of the Web" - Washington Post

SouthWestWalks Ireland

Walking tours and self-guided intineraries in Eire and Northern Ireland

from Walking in Ireland


ABOVE: John Ahern and Linda Woods of SouthwestWalks Ireland pose with their two daughters on Cape Clear Island.

  • 2017 Update: SouthWestWalks Ireland is now Ireland Walk Hike Bike, which offers guided and self-guided tours on two feet or two wheels. The company's Web site is at

SouthWestWalks Ireland was founded by Linda Woods, a former Dubliner, and her husband John Ahern, a native of South West Ireland. Originally, the couple and their staff of walking experts thought they'd focus on walks within their home region, but--faced with demand from repeat travelers--they expanded their territory to include other scenic walking areas of the Republic and Northern Ireland.

Linda and John planned our small group's itinerary on Sherkin, Heir, and Cape Clear Islands in Roaringwater Bay. We visited archaelogical sites, met interesting local people, learned about the area's history and culture, and were treated to entertaining anecdotes along the way. Our guides were a delight professionally and personally, and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend SouthWestWalks Ireland to anyone who's contemplating a walking tour in the Republic or Northern Ireland.

SouthWestWalks Ireland has several types of trips:

Guided Walking Holidays are made up of 6 to 14 individually booked walkers (often from different countries). Each day's walk is typically 12-22 km (8-13 miles), with evenings being spent in local restaurants and pubs.

Guided Leisure Holidays are designed for less experienced walkers or visitors who are new to Ireland and want more time to become acquainted with the local people and culture. Groups are limited to 8 people, and the walks cover more of the country (with more driving) than the Guided Walking Holidays do.

Guided Mini-Break Holidays last four nights (rather than the usual week) and run from Monday until Friday morning. They focus on a specific region, such as the County Kerry or the Southern Islands of West Cork.

Self-Guided Adventure Holidays offer the convenience of a planned itinerary with the privacy and flexibility of independent travel. SouthWestWalks Ireland provides tour descriptions, maps, and route maps for each day's walking;. Acommodations are pre-booked, luggage is transported for you each day, and you can call a 24-hour emergency number if problems arise.

Next article: Molly Gallivan's Cottage and Traditional Farm

Walking in Ireland - General Information:
Types of walking trips
Resources and Web links

Walks in Northern Ireland:
Giant's Causeway
Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge
Rathlin Island
Guide: Chris Murphy

Walks in Southwest Ireland:
Roaringwater Bay
Sherkin Island
Heir Island
Cape Clear Island
Sheep's Head Way
Glengarriff Nature Reserve
Guides: SouthWestWalks Ireland

Related articles:
Molly Gallivan's Cottage and Traditional Farm
Bunratty Manor Hotel (Shannon Airport)