Glendalough Monastic City & Spink Walk

If you are comming from abroad and staying at Lough Dan Scout Centre then a day trip to Glendalough is a must. This spectacular glacial valley (Glendallough means valley of the two lakes) is right at the heart of the Wicklow Mountains National Park and has attracted visitors for centuaries. The first of these was Saint Kevin who set up a small hermatige on the side of the upper lake which eventually developed into a major religious centre in the 6th and 7th centuaries. Known as Glendalough of the seven churches, the monastic site has the ruined remains of several churches, the cathederal, Saint saviour’s priory, St kevin’s kitchen and Round tower.

Glendalough is only 9km from Lough Dan Scout Centre by road or via the Wicklow Way. If you want to do an overnight visit to Glendalough you can camp beside the Glendassan Log Cabin and swim in the Glendassan River.

A visit to the monastic city can be followed by the spectacular Spink walk. This high level walk goes around the upper lake through some wild country and past the ruins of the old miners village. The round trip from the upper car-park takes about two and a half to three hours. It is on forest tracks & a board walk so can be done in regular shoes. I prefer to do the route anti-clockwise as the climb is more gradual and if the weather is good there is a great plunge pool at the top of the zigzag miners path. Like all hill walks make sure you have the correct personal and group equipment such as map and compass, rain gear, warm clothes, first aid kit and bivvy bag.