Travel

Top three for free: wicklow

The Garden of Ireland is most certainly a title that Wicklow lives up to. The county’s abundance of beautiful scenery and outdoor trails means that there is a huge amount to do here on a tight budget. So much so, that in fact it is hard to narrow it down to just three things.
 
The Bray to Greystones cliff walk has to be one of the most scenic and easy to navigate hikes in Wicklow and perhaps all of Ireland. 
 
There is simply no way to get lost because it follows the dart line. At 7km long, this hike takes around two hours to complete at a steady walking pace. It is not overly strenuous, but certainly provides a great work out.  
 
For those who are eager for a a challenge, jogging the trail will provide just that. An abundance of wildlife can also be seen by those who embark on the cliff walk. Seals, and if you are really lucky, dolphins can be spotted popping their heads above the water. 
 
The views along the cliff walk are truly stunning. On a clear day this hike is truly glorious with the sun reflecting off the ocean. 
 
Next up, is Glendalough. This breath taking glacial valley is home to an ancient monastery and a gloriously beautiful nature reserve. A trip to Glendalough provides a whole day out that won’t cost you a penny. 
 
If you are interested in history, Glendalough has bags of that. The monastery located here dates back to the sixth century and can be explored completely free of charge. It is a door to the past and an amazing resource to have access to all year round. 
 
The landscape of Glendalough is so gorgeous and unlike anything else in Ireland. You will want to return to this picturesque location time and time again to experience its charm and breathe in the crisp, fresh air. 
 
The valley was formed by a glacier during the last ice age, giving Glendalough its unique appearance. Glendalough has an eerily beautiful atmosphere that is really worth experiencing by all.
 
While we all dream of the beaches of Spain, don’t feel too forlorn if a beach holiday isn’t on the cards any time soon, because there are actually some really gorgeous beaches around Ireland. 
 
Brittas Bay is perhaps the most popular and largest sandy beach in Wicklow. The overall atmosphere is really great. Over the summer months it’s a top spot to visit if you desire a beach day and in the winter months it is a great place to go for a stroll and a change of scenery, minus the high cost. 
 
A day of relaxation by the beach can do wonders, alleviating stress and giving you a chance to let loose for a day, without the worry of bankrupting yourself. 
 
With all of these suggestions, consider packing food and you really won’t have to spend a single penny whilst out and about, experiencing all that Wicklow has to offer. 
 
Whether you want to fly solo or bring some friends, all of these suggestions give you the opportunity to see some of Wicklow’s wonders in a very cost effective manner. 
 
There is truly nothing better than coming home after a day full of adventure knowing that you won’t have to scrape together money for the next few weeks as a result of your endeavours. 
 
If you’re feeling like you might want to spend some time outdoors, surrounded by beautiful scenery and fresh air, Wicklow is the perfect place to spend some time.  
 
The options available are very diverse, with something to suit everyone’s interests. So, next time you are looking for a day of high adventure and low cost, make sure to spend some time in Ireland’s garden county. 
 
 
Photo: Sean MacEntee/ Flickr