The vast majority of Wexford’s coastline is made up of sandy beaches and coves, particularly north of Wexford town starting off with Curracloe, the jewel of Wexford beaches, and stretching to Kilgorman and Courtown at the very north tip of the county (Courtown on YouTube). To the south of Wexford town, Carne is fantastic for wildlife (particularly bird watching), and Kilmore, Rosslare, Dunncannon all prepare you for the dramatic Hook Peninsula.
Inland, the county’s woodland offers unparalleled scenery whilst urban walks allow you to dip into Wexford’s rich heritage. There are two professional walking tour operators in Wexford – Wexford Walking tours and Southeast Costal Walks.
Carrickbyrne Hill is a historic and scenic 5km long forest trail with multiple viewing points. The hard volcanic outcrop that resisted the weathering process now stands out on the rather flat landscape. The rocks were formed during a period of volcanic activity about 400 million years ago. Carrickbyrne Hill was once part of the Jeffares Estate. The oak wood is known locally as ‘Camp Field’. During the 1798 rebellion the insurgents gathered here before marching towards New Ross.
The trees are mainly coniferous – an international gathering, with representatives from Europe and North America including Douglas fir from Vancouver, Japanese larch from the east and native Scots pine. You will also find oak, beech, ash, rowan, and Spanish chestnut. On the trail through the forest one might spot a fox, rabbit, hare or hear the blackbird and thrush. Laurel, bramble and heather form the main ground cover of the wood.
Location: Carrigbyrne Hill, New Ross, Co. Wexford
Coolmelagh Forest Recreational Area
This recently launched walk takes you through pine and beech forests up to the summit of Gibbet hill. A number of places on this hill you’ll notice some fine stone walls made out of flattish pieces of rock. In the eighteenth century there was a slate quarry on the hill. In early May expect to see a carpet of bluebells, thriving quietly away beneath the beech trees.
Sat Nav: 52.6860, -6.5796
Edenvale River and Forest Walk
A short but lovely walk alongside the slow river through woods. It features an impressive waterfall which offers a haven for keen walkers and nature lovers who relish the natural beauty of the great outdoors. It is close to the village of Castlebridge where the Guinness book of records was founded in May 1951.
Location: Castlebridge, Wexford
Sat Nav: N: 52.38632 W: -6.46667
Enniscorthy Town Heritage Walk
Enniscorthy was founded by St. Senan in 510. It is a picturesque town situated on the banks of the River Slaney midway between the Blackstairs Mountains and the sea. The town is overlooked by the old 1798 historic battle site of Vinegar Hill. The town’s heritage walk takes in the Duffry Gate, St Aidan’s Cathedral, the Market House/Market Square, the Athenaeum, St Mary’s Church, Enniscorthy Castle and County Museum, Enniscorthy Bridge and The Cotton Tree site, the railway station, Templeshannon, Vinegar Hill, Society of Friends, the fountain, Seamus Rafter Memorial, post office from 1903, Methodist and Presbyterian Church, the National 1798 Rebellion Centre, and the Maltings.
There is an excellent promenade walk by the River Slaney with a children’s playground at the entrance of the walk.
Sat Nav: 52.501411,-6.567228
Enniscorthy Town Prom Walk along the River Slaney
This 6km walk round trip starts close to the Riverside Park Hotel in Enniscorthy on the west side of the River Slaney. Starting on a concrete path for approx 500m it brings you to the point where the Urrin River joins the Slaney. A Country Walk can be accessed via a Footbridge (it’s approx 4m high and as such not accessible to wheelchairs or prams/buggies). The 2m wide path is more suited to country walkers and hiking enthusiasts. The gravel path was installed to match the rural landscape with several seats installed alongside. Don’t be too surprised to see some livestock in this rural setting, munching on the grass at several times of the year!
Location: Starting in Enniscorthy Town
Sat Nav: 52.496902,-6.56706
Forth Mountain 3 Rocks Trail
There are a number of car parks and lay-bys in the forest, with numerous walks on the forest road network and paths. Fine views of the surrounding countryside can be had and on a clear day you can see counties Carlow, Kilkenny, Tipperary, Wicklow and Waterford.
The main tree species in the forest are Sitka spruce, Lodge pole pine and Japanese larch, other flora includes heather, heath and furze. Some of the animals and birds that can be seen in the forest are woodcock, pheasant, raven and fox.
Location: 8 km SW of Wexford Town on the R733
Sat Nav: 52.30759, -6.58765
Kilbrannish Forest Recreation Area
Close to the summit of Mount Leinster, this area has fantastic views of the surrounding countryside. There are two official trails of 3km and 5km but much longer walks are possible for those with more energy.
Location: 7km west of Bunclody
Sat Nav: N: 52.64037 W: -6.74390
Raven Point Nature Reserve Walk
This walk is a real favourite with many Wexford people, running parallel to Curracloe beach and passing through a bright mature pine forest with pine needles cushioning your steps. The main forest track is fine for strollers and kids will love running and jumping off the dunes and hiding in the fern covered forest. Continue around the loop or come back by the beach, this is a great walk any time of year with plenty of shelter during the winter.
Further north is Curracloe Beach, which doubled as Omaha beach in the film ‘Saving Private Ryan’.
Location: Raven Point, Curracloe
Sat Nav: 52.38051, -6.36781
Remember 1798 Walk
This 6 mile walk, starting at the Trading Post Shop and camping site, along the lanes and backroads of rural Wexford follows the route taken by the North Cork Militia to Oulart Hill in 1798. Walkers and cyclists have the opportunity to view the twelve hectare woodland park designed by Coillte and The Oulart Hill Co-op, visit Fr Murphy’s Well, pass the home of Edward Fitzgerald and take in the magnificent views of County Wexford. The walk finishes on Oulart Hill at the Tulach a’ tSolais Monument which represents the divide between the old and new world. A local historian is available for guided walks by contacting the camp site in advance.
Sat Nav: 52.45057,-6.39584
Location: Ballaghkeen, Enniscorthy
South East Coastal Walks
Offering panoramic coastal walks in the South East from the Hook, Kilmore Quay, Carnsore Point, St Helens, Rosslare etc.
Our aim is to offer 1.5/2 hr guided relaxed walks with local info on history and flora and fauna, followed by tasty lunch.
Walks and Lunch €20
Walk only €10.
Transport €10 extra from Wexford Tourist Office
Walks on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
Private parties also catered for.
Slieveboy Askamore Loop Walk
Three walking loops of 6km, 9km and 12km, ranging from easy to moderate, along laneways and forest roads – perfect for nature lovers. Trail head is located in the car park opposite the parish church in the village of Askamore. The nearest services (teas, toilets etc) are available in the village of Carnew (10km away).
Location: Opposite parish church, Askamore, Gorey.
Sat Nav: N: 52.38632 W: -6.46667
The Wexford Walking Experience
This wonderful historical and anecdotal walking tour of Wexford Town takes place every Wednesday and in all weathers!
When: Every Wednesday from 1st March to 31st October.
Where: Departs from Wexford Tourist Office on Crescent Quay at 1pm.
Duration: 2 hours
Walking Tour – A stroll through the beautiful historic town of Wexford
Wexford Opera House – Enjoy an intimate behind the scenes tour of the stunning Wexford Opera House
Lunch – Enjoy a complimentary light lunch in the Sky View Café at Wexford Opera House
Selskar Abbey – Experience a superb guided tour of this medieval abbey and discover the wonders of this historic gem.
Booking: Wexford Opera House
T: +353 53 9122400. For groups and can tailor made tour bookings call Monica on 086 1079497
Wexford Town Heritage Walk
This wonderful walk around the historic town of Wexford takes in Selskar Abbey, John Wesley Methodist Chapel, St Iberius’ Church, Rowe Street Church, The Friary, Bride Street Church, Society of Friends Meeting House, St Patrick’s Church and Graveyard.
Location: Wexford Town
Sat Nav: 52.34143, -6.46550
Wexford Walking Tours
A historical and anecdotal tour of Wexford Town every day ( except Sunday ) from 1st March to 31st October. Departs from Wexford Tourist Office on Crescent Quay at 11am.
Cost €4 per person. Duration about 90 mins.
“History happened in all weathers and so do our tours”
We also cater for groups and can tailor make tours according to group’s particular interests or mobility levels. Just ring Joanne at 0863526133, Monica at 0861079497, or Siobhan at 0879175171.