walking tour

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Achill Island Walking Weekend 2014

Join us for our Achill Island Walking Weekend, from October 3rd to 5th, 2014.

Our small group will be based at Keel village, from where we can discover the best of the island on foot, with no need for long transfers from our B&B. Our walking weekend will take us to Slievemore and Croaghaun mountains, the famous Deserted Village, a Napoleonic Tower and much more. We will enjoy the superb ocean views that this island offers the visitor. From Slievemore, we can look across lovely Blacksod Bay towards the Mullet Peninsula and the Iniskea Islands. From Croaghaun, boasting Ireland’s highest cliffs, we gaze out west into the vast Atlantic, or south towards Clare Island, Inisturk and Inisbofin beyond.

Achill Island Walking Weekend, Mayo, Ireland

Croaghaun mountain, Achill Island

This is tough hiking, with Slievemore at 671 m and Croaghaun at 688 m. The schedule is as follows :

Friday :

Arrive at Westport train station Friday evening. There’s no need to bring the car to Mayo. Jump on a train from Heuston at 12.45, relax and arrive in Westport at 15.55. Transfer to Achill for dinner and a gentle stroll on the wonderful Keel beach, just a short walk from our B&B.

Saturday :

We will hike Slievemore, taking in the famous Deserted Village and archaeological features of this northern part of the island (approx. 6 hours).

Sunday :

A superb hike up to Croaghaun and to its exquisite corrie lake. Our descent brings us past old booley (transhumance) houses to the iconic beach at Keem Bay (approx. 6 hours), before departing on the 17.45 train that gets in to Dublin at 21.10.

As always, accommodation on this Achill Island walking weekend is full board, with dinner in Keel and packed lunches for the walks. This is an ocean weekend, with views of the deep blue all around.

Achill Island Walking Weekend – Bookings

The cost of this weekend is Euro 250 per person sharing.
For single bookings, please add Euro 20 = Euro 270.
To book, please call 086 8318748, or email info [at] tourismpurewalking.com.

To learn more about the island, visit Achill Tourism and Love Achill.

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Bialowieza National Park, Poland

Bialowieza National Park is world-renowned, both for its population of European Bison and its famous Strictly Protected Area, where man’s intervention in its pristine nature is virtually nil. Bialowieza is the most celebrated remnant of the vast primeval forest that once covered most of central and eastern Europe. Home to elusive Lynx and Wolf, the Park also boasts Deer, Wild Boar, several species of Woodpecker and Owls and a host of other wonderful birds.

Bialowieza Bison

Bison in Bialowieza National Park, Poland

Bialowieza is situated some four hours’ drive east of Warsaw and the park that lies within Poland (152 km2) is part of a much larger forest that is shared with neighbouring Belarus. While the establishment of the park dates back to 1921, it was reopened after WW II in 1947.

Bialowieza National Park

Bialowieza National Park

The peacefulness of this place is extraordinary and lives long in the memory. On our pre-dawn walk to seek out the iconic Bison, the silence is broken only by cracking sticks underfoot, as we tread lightly along forest pathways in search of this impressive animal. The first time I laid eyes on them was one heck of a moment, one that I will remember forever. Quietly moving through the forest, our walk was disturbed by a family of Wild Boar running past. We then came upon an opening in the woods and there they were, some 7 Bison grazing in the morning mist. A magical experience.

Even back in the village of Bialowieza itself, we wander around taking in the quiet atmosphere and enjoying the lovely homes of these forest people. It’s a beautiful spot.

We are accompanied in Bialowieza by our friendly and superbly knowledgeable member of Poland’s National Parks Service. Indeed, on occasion, we’ve even been demonstrated the Polish method for regenerating their oak forests by a Forest Manager with the Polish Forestry Service.

Bialowieza trees

Beautiful Bialowieza National Park

Visiting Bialowieza makes for a wonderful trip for bird watchers and true lovers of the outdoors. It is a unique place, offering a glimpse of what our own great forests might once have looked like.

Bialowieza National Park

Our visit to Bialowieza National Park is combined with Biebrza National Park, some 160 km north. We spend seven days on a Poland Wildlife Tour in springtime, 4 – 5 in Biebrza and 2-3 in Bialowieza.

Visit the Park’s official website.

If you’d like to join our next birdwatching and wildlife spotting tour to Poland in May 2019, please call me on 086-8318748 or drop me a line to info[at]tourismpurewalking.com.

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