Croagh Patrick - Ireland's Holy Mountain
31st May - 4th June 2022
Option 1: Make your own way to Westport: £655.
Option 2: Travel with the leaders from Pembroke Dock: £815, includes ferry and minibus travel from Pembroke Dock - Croagh Patrick and return. On the return journey we arrive back in Pembroke Dock, early hours of the 5th June. Travelodge accommodation available, but not included in the price.
Having prepared over winter in the nearby hamlet of Aghagower, Saint Patrick set out for the Holy mountain on Shrove Saturday in the year 441. On the summit he spent forty days in prayer before returning to Aghagower to celebrate Easter. Croagh Patrick provides the focus for our time in the beautiful West of Ireland - the mountain will be with us when we rise and when we retire. We self-cater as a group in two cottages at the foot of the mountain.
Walks and Excursions
During our time in the west we will walk to the summit of the Holy Mountain, visit Aghagower with its famous Round Tower, Ballintubber Abbey (the only Church in Ireland still in daily use which was founded by an Irish King) and the famine memorial at Doo Lough, spectacularly set between the Mweelrea mountains and Sheeffry Hills.
Murrisk Abbey is a quiet place, a romantic ruin close to the shore of Clew bay, just a short walk from our cottages. A place of prayer for hundreds of years, we will gather here in the morning before setting out for the summit of the Holy mountain. The national famine memorial is also at Murrisk. An awesome site, it commemorates the famine of the 1850's that devasted the west of Ireland.
Our walk to the summit of Croagh Patrick (764m/2,507 ft) will be taken at a gentle pace with time on top to enjoy the panoramic view of Clew bay and sit awhile in the summit Chapel.
A half hour drive from our cottages brings us to us Aghagower and from there, Ballintubber Abbey. We have a guided tour of the Abbey.
There will be opportunities to walk in the foothills of Croagh Patrick as well as time to explore the lovely Georgian town of Westport where we can visit the shops and enjoy the sites and wonderful ambience. An evening of traditional Irish music at one of the towns pubs, most famous of which is perhaps, Matt Molloy's, will be on the itinerary for those who wish. Another evening we'll drive out to Doo Lough.
This is an area of beautiful land and seascapes, of history reaching back through mist and folklore, a place of deep spirituality shaped by its rich, Celtic Christian roots...
With the exception of our walk to the summit of Croagh Patrick, which is classified as medium in length (no more than 7 miles) with Challenging-plus terrain (it will be rough underfoot and rocky and steep in parts), walks are generally short (no more than 3 miles) with moderate terrain - but expect occasional rocky or steep sections.
We have two cottages at the foot of Croagh Patrick, both with views directly onto the Holy mountain. We self-cater as a group, with the leaders doing the cooking and everyone helping with meal preparation and clearing of tables. Accommodation is in single, twin and double rooms, some with en-suite, others with two rooms sharing facilities. If you wish to share a room please mention this on the booking form.
Option 1: Arrive Croagh Patrick cottages during the afternoon of the 31st. Car parking is available. A 15-minute taxi ride will bring you from the Railway Station to the cottages.
Option 2: Meet the leaders in Pembroke Dock, Wales, during the evening of the 30th in readiness to catch the ferry, early hours of the 31st. There is limited availability for this option.
David Gleed +44 (0)7896 285839, firstname.lastname@example.org and Ian Coward