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Fairy castle Dublin mountains - way to go

MAP: OS of Ireland 1:50,000 Discovery 50; downloadable map/instructions at coillteoutdoors.ie.

TRAVEL: Rail (www.luas.ie): Luas Green Line to Balally (3½ miles). Bus (www. dublinbus.ie): 44B to Blackglen Road (2½ miles). Road: M50 Jct 13; R133, R113 towards Rockbrook; pass under M50, then immediately left uphill for ½ mile to Kilmashogue car park on left (OS of I ref O 151245).

WALK DIRECTIONS: From car park follow Wicklow Way 'walking man' markers (WW) up forest road for 1½ miles. Where WW turns right up steps (OS ref 164232), ahead for 20m, then fork left along gravel road for ¾ mile to pole barrier and road (175234).

Right to Three Stones to admire view over Wicklow Hills and Dublin Bay. Return to junction just below radio masts (176233); left by Coillte notice, up path to cairn on Fairy Castle (172224).

Straight ahead down clear track for ¼ mile to turn right (166222) on WW; follow to car park.

LENGTH: Six miles -- allow three hours.

GRADE: Easy/Moderate.

DON'T MISS: Breathtaking views over Dublin Bay and the Wicklow Hills from the Three Stones.


ACCOMMODATION: Merrion Hotel, 21 Upper Merrion Street, Dublin (01-603 0600; www.merrionhotel.com), an absolute gem, from its fabulous staff to the original art on its walls. Ask for the 'Footfalls Package' -- includes pick-up and guided walks.

FOOTFALLS WALKING HOLIDAYS: Trooperstown, Co Wicklow (0404 45152; walkinghikingireland.com).

INFORMATION: Bray Tourist Office. Tel: 01-286 7128; visitdublin.com; discoverireland.ie/walking; coillteoutdoors.ie.

Irish Independent