Day 1: Arrival day
Please inform us about your arrival times so that we can make arrangements for a taxi transfer from the airport or another accommodation or organise a taxi from the local bus stop. (If you are arriving late we will bring you directly to your Guesthouse in Rathdrum and see you the following morning.)
We will introduce you to your donkey companion. Then your new donkey friend will bring you on a walk around our farm. This will be followed by a detailed discussion of your trip and we will supply you with maps and brochures, etc. Your first overnight will be in the village of Rathdrum and we will bring you there.
Rathdrum is situated high on the western side of the Avonmore Valley. The town has been the location of many films and is the birthplace of Charles Stewart Parnell, one of the greatest political leaders of modern Irish history. 5 local pubs make the temptation for an after dinner pub crawl irresistible!
Day 2: Before you set off on your travels
After a full Irish breakfast in Jacob’s Well it’s back to Clissmann’s Farm at Cronybyrne to meet your donkey again. 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……….
Please do not forget to bring your brush with you as you need to brush your donkey every day before departure.
If you have any problems with your donkey you must ring us immediately please do not wait to tell us at the end of your trip – its too late then. Your donkey is depending on you to mind him/her properly.
Oats will be available at all the B/B’s so your donkey does not have to carry them. Please ensure that the panniers have been evenly packed and if they slip please contact us.
We will provide you with lunch today.
Day 2: Cronybyrne to Laragh
When leaving the farm turn left. Continue along this road where you will pass a house with a flag hanging over the door.
Continue straight on this road for approx. 2 km and then stay right (on the higher road) when the road forks.
Continue approx. 5km on this road where you will have wonderful views of the valley and forests. You will cross a flat concrete bridge and shortly afterwards you will come to a T junction with a small stone bridge to your left. Turn RIGHT here.
This will bring you in to the village of Laragh. Walking approx. 1 km, you will pass signs for the woollen mills on your left and a row of bed and breakfasts on your right.
Continue straight on until you reach the main junction in the village where you will see Lynham’s Hotel on your right hand side. Go into the hotel reception for directions to the location of the field for your donkey. At this stage you can also leave the panniers in the hotel. It is approx. ½ an hour walk to the donkey field. You can make arrangements for someone from the hotel to pick you up by car from the field and bring you back to the hotel.
Lynham’s pub in Laragh is one of the county’s most famous landmarks. Visited by artists, poets, locals, politicians and real Irish characters you will always find someone interesting to talk to and you will be well fed.
Day 3: Glendalough
As you are spending a second night in Laragh there are various wonderful trips you can do today. While your donkey has a day off, you can visit the Monastic city of Glendalough by horse and carriage. Heading towards Glendalough, a few minutes from the hotel is “The Arches” on the right hand side directly opposite the car park of the Wicklow Heather Restaurant.
Mr. Jimmy Cullen, owner of the horse and carriage will be waiting for you here at approx. 11.00 o’clock. He will drive you down to the lakes and tell you about the history and legends of the area. He will then drive back you back to the Visitor Centre.
At the Visitor Centre there is an excellent Exhibition on the Monastic City. (Please ask for the translation if you need one). Then you can view a very interesting Film on Early Christian Ireland, it’s monasteries, it’s gold and silver chalices and it’s famous books – The Book of Kells, Armagh and Drimna and of course the story of St. Kevin who founded Glendalough.
Then you can go and explore the Monastic City itself – the beautifully preserved Round Tower, the Cathedral, St. Kevin’s Kitchen. These buildings are mainly 9th and 10th Century. There is a path – The Green Road to the Poulanass waterfall, the Spink and the lakes – so much to see and enjoy.
You can chat to Aoife or Barbara at Lynham’s Hotel about further information on walks in the area.