Wednesday, 5 September 2012

The Glen of Aherlow


The Glen of Aherlow

 The Glen of Aherlow is one of Ireland’s under-rated treasures, a fabulous glen with rivers and streams and stunning mountain scenery and some really good food too as I found out on a very recent visit. It is also a mecca for walkers and fittingly there is a wealth of information on the many walks, some short, some easy, some long, some difficult, in the area.
Coming from Cork, I headed for Cahir and then for Bansha where I turned left and soon found myself in the Glen with the Galtees to the south and Slievenamuck to the north. The main road through the glen is the R663 but we soon branched off and took the more southern route to Rossadrehid.

 The walks into the Galtees start from this road and one, the 11km trek to Lake Muskry, starts here near the village. We had already had a walk that day, so stayed on the road. The views aren't bad here – but much better on the higher R663. There are many high hedges but we did stop often and looked at the Galtees over farmers’ gates.
Soon we completed that leg of the trip – the distances are short enough within the glen – and headed for the County Limerick town of Galbally. Here, we visited Moore Abbey before turning back and finding the R663. The views were improving by the time we found our base, the Aherlow House Hotel.


Moore Abbey near Galbally
After checking in and enjoying the Galtees from our bedroom window, we headed closer to Slievenamuck and found the large statue of Christ the King on the R664 which goes to Tipperary Town.

 Quite a few walks start here and we took a looped one called the Rock an Thorabh Loop, the rock of the bull. This is a pleasant forest track walk, rated moderate, with a length of 6 kilometres. Highlight is the Rock from which you get terrific views of Tipperary town and the valley around it.
Rock an Thorabh
Back by the statute, the Galtees can be seen in all their glory. It is probably the best place to view the range and it highest peak Galtymore (919 metres).
Tipperary town from Rock an Thorabh


In Cahir, they have a very helpful tourist office and I also visited the Castle  and the Swiss Cottage. I stayed in the Aherlow House Hotel.

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