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Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

Nellysford, Virginia
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31 posts
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Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

We plan on spending 8 nights in Co. Donegal. Will be using public transport (bus). We plan on 2 nights in Donegal town and later 3 nights in Clonmany in Inishowen. Seeking advice for where is best to spend three nights between---want public transport access and good hill/coastal walking.(Glencolumbkille, or Ardara, or Dungloe, or Glenties, or Dunfanaghy, or somewhere else??)

Grayslake, Illinois
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1. Re: Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

Hi, I'm travelling to Co. Donegal next month, on public transport. I'm taking Bus Eireann from Derry to Donegal Town, then transferring to a bus to Ardara, where I'll stay for a night. As near as I can tell, the nearest coast to Ardara is Maghera Beach, 6 miles away. It's a beautiful long beach with caves and a lot of history - I don't know how I will get there - prob a combo of walk, taxi, maybe hitch.

Then that evening, I'm taking the McGeehan's bus to Glencolumkille, where I will stay 3 nights, a couple miles outside of town, in Malinmore. The guesthouse where I'm staying has a shuttle which will pick me up at bus stop. They'll also bring me to town the next AM, from there I hope to walk at least a portion of the Glencolumbkille Circuit walk, along the Turas pilgrimage stones, down to the coast. (If I get tired on the way back, may try to catch a lift).

The next day, I hope to arrange with the guesthouse shuttle for a lift down to/from Carrick or Teelin, to walk the Pilgrim Path up to One Man's Pass. We'll see how far I get :) I hear tell that hikers crawl across on their stomachs due to the wind. It is possible to walk a few miles along the coastal hills, down to Malinbeg beach.

The next day, I'll catch a late-AM bus from Glencolumbkille to Donegal Town, to Dublin Airport. I'll write a trip report when I get back......

Dublin
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2. Re: Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

Trying to visit Donegal on public transport is a perennial problem. There are great areas in which to walk around Errigal and Muckish Mountains, and in nearby Glenveagh National Park, but they are not practical by bus, as public transport to the northern part of the county is very limited.

If you fancy trying to work out a schedule, see www.loughswillybusco.com/timetables. Lough Swilly serve Gweedore, Dunfanaghy and Falcarragh from where you can access Errigal and Muckish. There may be some other local bus services - e.g.Feda O'Donnell in Rannafast, but their services are generally longer distance and are not designed for passengers to local destination, as far as I'm aware.

Nellysford, Virginia
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3. Re: Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

Bus in Donegal is awkward but seems like it can be done. We could do bus from Donegal to Glencolumbcille or Dungloe( McGeehy ) Stay at either of those towns walking. Then after two nights take bus to Letterkenny (McGeehy from Glencolumbcille or Swilly from Dungloe) and change bus to Clonmany.( Foyle/Northwest). I need to refine the question---given that we can move by bus, which is better destination for hill-walking/coastal walking and B&B/guesthouse accommodation?

Bangor, Northern...
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4. Re: Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

We have a holiday house in the Dunfanaghy area , and would recommend it for good walking , lots of b& bs, etc -

good walks locally that we love are -

Climbing Muckish , or Errigal

Tramore beach - along the Hornhead road out of Dunfanaghy - there is a good guided walk here , along the headland and passing 3 " blow holes " known locally as " Mcswynes Guns " due to the noise they make during storms .

Other good coastal walks include from Ards friary around to Ards forest park ,

There is a great walk from the back gates of Glenveagh National park , it follows the river down to the loch , you can look around the castle gardens and use the restaurant etc before retracing your steps back , or climb higher above the castle on the other side of the lake overlooking the " poisoned glen "

For most of these you will need good boots, and to take sensible precautions in weather etc - mist can come down quickly .

Unfortunately all these may be difficult if relying on public transport - but Dunfanaghy is a friendly village , and you may well be luck in getting lifts - try asking in the Centra store, or around the local pubs !

Nellysford, Virginia
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5. Re: Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

Dunfanaghy was wonderful. Good hill walking and coastal walking. Public bus drivers were very helpful and would let us off at Ards Forest entrance and later pick us up on the road to Creeslough. No difficulty getting to or from Dunfanaghy by bus.( Did have to go into and out of Letterkenny but schedules were workable)

Nellysford, Virginia
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6. Re: Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

The movement on to Clonmany from Dunfanaghy was smooth. BUT, no one had mentioned that Clonmany had no food options other than a part time Chinese Take Away during September weekdays. Evidently all food sources shift to weekend only in the fall. Highly awkward when one is moving by public transportation--long walk to and from Ballyliffin.

Bangor, Northern...
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7. Re: Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

So glad you enjoyed Dunfanaghy - We have been going to this area for 50+ years , and just love it !

Although there are a lot more new holiday homes ( ours is 300 years old , so we feel a bit superior!!) , it has meant that there are more restaurants, art galleries etc in the area , so there is something for everyone !

We were up at the weekend , and despite the horrible weather in most of Ireland, the sun was shining in Donegal , a really beautiful start to October - so good that I just had to go in swimming at the Monks beach at the Ards Friary!

8. Re: Good Hill/Coastal Walking ?

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