Hike the Spinc and Glenealo Valley Trail in Glendalough

Glendalough Valley, Wicklow, Ireland

  • Activities:

    Photography, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Spring, Summer, Autumn

  • Trail Type:

    Loop

  • RT Distance:

    5.6 Miles

  • Elevation Gain:

    1246.7 Feet

Bathrooms
Family Friendly
Forest
Lake
Picnic Area
Scenic
Waterfall

This hillwalk offers some of the most spectacular views in Glendalough and its close proximity to Dublin makes it a perfect day trip.

Glendalough is located in Wicklow Mountains National Park and is just over an hour's drive from Dublin, making it the perfect day trip from Ireland's capital city. There are 9 hikes of varying lengths and difficulties in Glendalough but the 9km Spinc and Glenealo Valley Trail (White Route) is the perfect hike to see everything the area has to offer. I recommend parking at the Glendalough Visitor Center lot (where the pin is on the map). By parking here you will be treated to views of Lower Lake and the Monastic Site while you make your way to the hike's trailhead near Upper Lake on a short and well-traveled trail.

From the trailhead you will begin following the white arrows through the woods. Each of the 9 trails are denoted by a different color trail marker so you will continue to follow the white arrows the entire hike. The trail is extremely well-marked so staying on the correct path is not something you will have to worry about.

The hike starts by ascending a steep path past Poulnass Falls through a wooded area. The trail eventually joins a boardwalk and 600 steps leading you to a beautiful view of Upper Lake. Continue on the trail as it descends into the valley through a blanket bog - be sure to stay on the wooden planks as you hike through the bog! Finally the trail begins to wind around the valley and takes you right alongside Upper Lake. There are some beautiful stopping points for a picnic along this stretch.

On beautiful days and weekends Glendalough can be very busy so arrive early to secure a spot in the car park, otherwise you will have to park on the narrow street.

Pack List

  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Water and snacks
  • Extra layers
  • Camera
  • €3.00 to enter the Visitor Center and take advantage of its , no fee for hiking or exploring the park on your own
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Everything you need to know about the trail here, great article!

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

Sonja Saxe Explorer

Seattle, WA based, adventuring everywhere. I'm on an endless journey to explore and photograph the national parks' scenic backcountry!

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