The Glengarriff Nature Reserve is home to over 300 hectares of oak woodland and is a wonderful place to visit at any time of year. Each season shows a different aspect of the woods and it is equally as beautiful to visit in the first flush of spring as it is during the colourful palette of autumn. There are several clearly marked walks in the woods so there is a trail for every age, ability and fitness level. Depending on how much time you have and what your energy levels are, it is always rewarding to combine a few of the loops into a longer tailor-made walk.
We usually incorporate Lady Bantry’s Lookout walk with the Big Meadow Walk which we like to start from this point and do in a clockwise direction instead of starting from the main carpark and crossing the river there. The start for this trail as seen above, is near the main entrance to the Glengarriff Nature Reserve. You can still park in the main Car park (200m down the road) and just walk up to this starting point.
These little stairs will lead you up to a small public road – be aware of traffic which can sometimes seem so surprising and intrusive in the woods – especially if you have small kiddies who have run ahead.
From across the small road the trail begins again and is a steep and steady climb up through the woods. The views from the top are spectacular and it is a great place to catch your breath and enjoy the quiet.
Be aware that coming down, you will use a whole different set of muscles than you did coming up!