Sports and the Outdoors
Bray Head. A well-marked path leads from the beach to the 10-foot-tall cross that crowns the spiny peak of Bray Head, a rocky outcrop that rises 791 feet from the sea. The fairly difficult one-hour climb affords stunning views of Wicklow Town and Dublin Bay. Bray, Co. Wicklow.
Wicklow Way. Devoted hikers come from all over the world to traverse the 137-km (85-mile) Wicklow Way, the first long-distance trail to open in Ireland, and still one of the best. Much of the route lies above 1,600 feet and follows rough sheep tracks, forest firebreaks, and old bog roads, so rain gear, windproof clothing, and sturdy footwear are essential. The trail starts in Marlay Park, just south of central Dublin, then ascends into the Wicklow mountain foothills, before passing glens, farms, and historic sights like Rathgall, home to the Kings of Leinster, and the Mill of Purgatory—a venerated "wardrobe" in Aghowle Church—before finishing up in Clonegal. If your feet are less than bionic, you can opt for any number of the short walks, or hop on a bike. Co. Wicklow. 0404/45152; www.wicklowway.com.