You should find the answer to most questions here.

If you have any further queries do not hesitate to contact us, we would be delighted to hear from you.

Donkey Walking

What is the concept?

We offer a donkey walking holiday package where together with one of our friendly and well trained donkeys you can hike a looped circuit and discover the beauty of the Wicklow Mountains. Walking at a donkey’s pace, you travel from village to village and overnight in a selection of welcoming Bed and Breakfasts and Country Hotels along the way.

Clissmann-Donkey-Walking-FAQ-the-concept

Your donkey walking holiday will bring you in close contact with the locals of the villages you stay in and with a pannier on his back, your donkey can help you carry 15 kilos of your luggage.

What is the itinerary?

We have worked out an trip which will bring you and your donkey on a wonderful journey taking in some of the most famous sights in Co. Wicklow.

Day 1 –  Arrival day

Day 2 – Cronybyrne to “The Meetings”

Day 3 – The Meetings, The Mottee Stone, Avoca and the Copper Mines

Day 4 – Ashton House, “The Meetings” to the Valley of Glenmalure

Day 5 – Glenmalure to Glendalough

Day 6 – Glendalough

Day 7 – Glendalough to Cronybyrne

Day 8 – Departure Day

The full itinerary can be viewed on the Donkey Walking Itinerary page.

What is included?

  • 7 Overnights and breakfast and one dinner voucher per person for Lynham’s Hotel Laragh. (Our experience is that people prefer to make their own dinner arrangements as there is such a variety on route on offer.)
  • Packed lunch on your first day.
  • Complimentary transfers to and from our farm to your B/B in Rathdrum.
  • A well trained donkey as your walking companion and detailed instruction on how to look her/him, how to brush her/him properly and check her/his feet.
  • Your donkey companion will have panniers to take approx. 15 kilos. She/he will have a blanket or rug under the panniers and a weatherproof cover to keep you luggage dry. We will supply you with a halter and brush. We leave a bucket and oats at all the overnight stops so that you do not need to carry them on route.
  • Secured fields, grazing and water and fodder for your donkey every day.
  • Detailed instruction on the route you will be taking and detailed maps and information on the areas you will be visiting.
  • A horse and carriage trip to the lakes at Glendalough.
  • Entrance vouchers to Greenan Farm Museum and Maze (open weekends May & September).
  • A rescue team on call if you should need help.

*All accommodation based on availability, nearby alternatives may be used.

Clissmann-Donkey-Walking-FAQ-included

Do we need experience?

No, the majority of our visitors have no previous experience with donkeys. All that is necessary is a love of donkeys, a willingness to learn and cooperate with them and some patience.

We ask that people booking this kind of holiday are prepared to get their hands dirty and bring a healthy amount of practical common sense.

How far do we walk?

The journeys each day average around 15km, with the possibility to make some longer if we have experienced hikers. The max altitude difference is from Glenmalure to Glendalough and is +300m but all other journeys are less than +150m.

Where do we sleep at night?

We have carefully planned a route where you overnight at welcoming bed and breakfasts or small country hotels each evening. They provide comfortable bedrooms for you and also a field and water for your donkey companion.

Please look at our Donkey Walking Itinerary page for more details on your overnight accomodation.

*All accommodation listed in the itinerary is based on availability and nearby alternatives may be used.

Where do we eat?

A large breakfast every morning, packed lunches on your first day and a dinner voucher per person for one night are included in the package.

There are shops and cafes along the route where you can buy supplies for lunch or many of the Bed and Breakfast operators can provide a packed lunch on request. There is a nice selection of restaurants and pubs serving food along the route and we will provide you with details of these when we are marking the maps.

Please look at our Donkey Walking Itinerary page for more details on restaurants close to where you will stay.

What actually happens when we arrive?

Depending on your arrival time and other factors, we will welcome you to the farm, show you the facilities and introduce you to the donkeys.

We will do a donkey instruction with you which consists of your learning and practicing how to catch, look after, groom, feed and harness your donkey. We also allow ample time for you to get to know the new member of your group before you take to the road the next day. Then your new donkey friend will bring you on a practice walk around our farm and for a short journey to the road.

Clissmann-Donkey-Walking-FAQ-training

This will be followed by a detailed discussion of your trip and we will go through the itinerary and maps with you and supply you with brochures and travel tips. We brief you on the attractions and features of this area and we also complete all outstanding paperwork.

Your first overnight is in the village of Rathdrum and we will bring you there once the donkey instruction and map work has been completed.

On the morning after your arrival, we collect you from the B&B and bring you to our base at Cronybyrne. We will give you more instructions on how to check your donkey’s well-being and look after him on the road. You will then give him a thorough brushing, pack your saddle bags and settle them comfortably on the donkey rug and off you go.

How can we book?

Once you know the date for which you want to book, e-mail, phone or write to us and we will hold a donkey walking package booking provisionally for ten days in your name. We can fully confirm your booking on receipt of a 50% payment which can be made through PayPal on our Prices Page or via Bank Transfer (please email for bank details). We expect you to pay the remaining 50% either 2 weeks before you travel or on your arrival in Euro cash. We do not as yet have a facility to accept credit or charge cards on the farm.

Many visitors come to us via Travel Agents and Tour Organisers. These companies feature us in their brochures and invite the public to book a holiday with us through them. Because they ‘package’ the holiday with local, access and foreign transport, with transfers and accommodation combined with an expertise in their trade, they are an excellent choice when intending to book a holiday.

What does it cost?

We offer different packages depending on the number of people in the group and the number of Bed and Breakfast rooms needed. Please visit our Donkey Walking Prices Page for more details.

What should we bring with us?

Active outdoor wear and Jeans and pullovers are the most suitable clothes. Hiking boots are very strongly recommended but strong outdoor sports shoes can be a good alternative. A set of rain gear is also advisable, but with changeable Irish weather don’t forget the t-shirts and shorts either! It is also a good idea to bring gloves to hold the lead rope for when you will be leading the donkey on the road.

We recommend you also bring a torch or head torch, an adapter for your electrical appliances and sun cream.

How and when are we to get to the caravan base at Cronybyrne?

Our visitors usually arrive at our base in the afternoon. We are flexible in this and try to adapt to our visitors’ needs. Some people arrive much earlier, some much later and we are happy to cater for this, so please just inform us of your plans.

Clissmann Horse Caravans Map of Ireland-2We have a transfer arrangement with local taxi companies which transport our visitors to and from Dublin, Dublin Airport, Dublin Ferry-port, Dun Laoghaire Ferry-port or any nearby accommodation provider. Visitors booked on a transfer from Dublin Airport should note that they should find their driver in the terminal in which their flight lands (1 or 2). The driver will wait at the opening from the baggage claim/customs in to the arrival hall and will hold a card with your name. In order to book the airport transfer we need the flight number, terminal number and arrival time. The driver will stop on route to allow you to do some food shopping as we have no grocery facilities on the farm.

It is also possible to travel to our farm by public transport, both by bus and train. From Dublin airport or Dublin city you can travel with Bus Eireann bus number 133 to our local village of Ashford. In Ashford you can shop for supplies in the CENTRA shop approx 100m from the bus stop. We can organize a taxi to bring you from Ashford to the farm once we know you have arrived there (you can ask a member of staff in the shop to call us). This taxi run costs approx €25.

Alternatively, you can travel with the Dublin/Rosslare train to the village of Rathdrum. You can shop for provisions in the village and we can organize a taxi to bring you to the farm once we know you have arrived there.

For those planning to travel to us with a rental car, you can find directions and a map on our Find Us page. We offer parking on our farm but please be advised that it is at your own risk.

What can we store at the Clissmann base?

We have an unsecured room to store luggage of low value and an area beside our private house to park cars but only on the strict understanding that luggage and cars are left here at the visitors’ risk.

What about telephones, electricity, currency, etc.?

  • Ireland has adopted the standard GSM cellular mobile phone system and good coverage is given with the exception of some narrow valleys in the more mountainous parts of County Wicklow. Public telephones are to found in nearly all villages, guest houses, hotels and pubs.
  • The standard for electricity supply in Ireland is 230 Volt 50 Hz. AC as it is elsewhere in Europe – but not on the caravans; they only have butane gas.
  • The Euro (€) is legal tender here; 1€ = 100 Cent.
  • Banks are located in Wicklow, Arklow and Rathdrum and are open Monday to Friday for slightly shorter hours than other businesses.
  • Pharmacies are also located in these towns as well as in Ashford.

What about insurance?

Please take out a third party holiday insurance and an accident insurance before you leave your own country as we cannot arrange this here.

Sometimes our visitors’ own household insurance cover can be extended by them to cover their holiday risks – visitors must check this themselves as they are responsible for ensuring that they are properly covered.

Our insurance does not cover our visitors against claims against them for any damage they may cause to other persons or their property.