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Looped Walks – Northern Headlands

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From the tip of Malin Head to the splendour of Donegal Bay, the north west of Ireland is home to some of the highest sea-cliffs in Europe, an ancient, mystical stone fort and a myriad of secluded islands. From short strolls to lengthy hikes, the Northern Headlands is known for its beautiful, bracing nature. An area steeped in history, it’s the perfect place to follow in storied footsteps via a refreshing looped walk around the region.


Taking in the lighthouse views from Fanad Head in County DonegalThe lighthouse in Fanad Head, County Donegal

Affectionately referred to as ‘Ireland in Miniature’, the Inishowen Peninsula is an incredible slice of remote Ireland. The wild Inishowen Head Loop begins just beside a World War II lookout tower atop Inishowen Head and moves to the point from where St Columba left Ireland in 563 to found the abbey on the Scottish isle of Iona. On a clear day, you may even catch sight of the west coast of Scotland. Elsewhere, the Tory Island Loop takes you deep into exceptional scenic beauty where you can meet local artists of indomitable spirit.

The island’s rugged terrain takes in magnificent cliff scenery and mythical, monastic ruins. But the most enchanting thing about the island is the islanders themselves, who know how to extend the warmest of welcomes. The warmth of welcome is obviously extended to all living creatures, as the island is also an important international bio-diversity area and a breeding site to the increasingly rare corncrake.
These are just some of the great looped walks waiting to be explored on the Northern Headlands of the Wild Atlantic Way. Whatever region you choose to explore, there’s a memorable looped walk for every walker to avail of. What’s more, our handy trip planner will help you put together the itinerary that’s right for you.


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