Walking in Ireland - The Burren
Ballyvaughan Wood Loop Walk
Walking in the Burren in Co. Clare, Ireland is very special. This looped walk, starting from the picturesque village of Ballyvaughan, Co. Clare, Ireland, is a real gem. The walk is accessible to anyone with a good fitness level, although you do not need to be super-fit to complete it. Sturdy walking boots, raingear and a walking stick or pole are recommended, as well as some water, food and a mobile phone. Remember LEAVE NO TRACE. The area should be left with no sign that you’ve been there! Take nothing except photographs and leave nothing behind. Also, remember to let someone know where you are going, so that you can be found if you happen to have an accident or you get lost!
This walk starts in the beautiful little village of Ballyvaughan in North Clare, Ireland, on the R477, which is the coast road at the north of County Clare. Parking is available in the village, near the pier. At the time of writing, this is a free parking area.
A – B: Start the walk on the opposite side of the road to your parking area. Just after the row of cottages, heading towards the village, there is a small road to the right that takes you past the local primary school. This road is also part of a longer walking route called the Burren Way. Follow the purple arrows which take you across a series of stone stiles and afterwards, a wooded section that eventually exits into a field. Continue to follow the loop that is marked with purple arrows. You will arrive at a surfaced roadway where the loop turns left. At this point you will see that the Burren Way turns right.
B – C: Continue along the surfaced roadway for about 300m. You will reach a main road (N67). Turn left here and almost immediately, turn right onto a minor road. Be really careful on this main road, as these roads are busy during the tourist season and are generally very narrow. Follow this minor road until you reach its end, at a metal gate taking you into a field. Cross the stone stile and follow the purple arrows across the fields. The path also takes you through a beautiful wooded area and sandy roadways. The exit from this section of the walk is very near Aillwee Cave. Turn left here.
C – D: Follow the roadway for approximately 2km. You will reach a T-junction. Turn left here. Now the purple arrows will direct you through a gateway where you will join a green road. Follow this green road for approx. 300m and exit at the double gate. The green road changes to a surfaced roadway and reaches a T-junction, where you must turn left onto a minor surfaced road.
D – A: You are now only approx. 400m from the N67 Galway road. When you reach this, turn left for the walk back to the village of Ballyvaughan and to your parking area on the right.
This is a really fabulous walk. The views are spectacular and there are many little areas where you will want to linger a while, so remember to bring some tasty refreshments with you. We completed this walk early one morning and treated ourselves to a beautiful lunch in the Burren Tearooms afterwards. What a great way to spend a day! Exhilarating!!