Waterford Greenway is a spectacular 46km cycling and walking trail along an old railway line which takes you from stunning Dungarvan all the way to the quays of Ireland's oldest city (Waterford). One of the best ways to explore the greenway is by bicycle and we are facilitated by The Greenway cycle tours and bike hire companies – see links below.
Some of the attractions enroute are:
Dungarvan:– Breath taking views across Dungarvan Bay traveling to the town centre.
Ballyvoile Tunnel:-The Ballyvoile 400 metre brick-lined tunnel is as fresh as the day it was built and discreetly lit to keep it's magic.
Two Stone Viaducts:- The Durrow 7 arch and Kilmacthomas 8 arch viaducts are engineering marvels.
Mount Congreve:-These world famous gardens are directly accessible from the Greenway.
Dungarvan to Ballinroad (4km) :This 4km stretch is simply fantastic. A beautiful walk will take you from the Norman-founded market town of Dungarvan, leaving the glistening Dungarvan Bay and passing beautiful Walton Park with King John's Castle behind you. Pass the Moresby Buoy in Abbeyside which recognises the tragic sinking of the Moresby ship in 1895. Then move on to the Barnawee Causeway, where many species of birds and sea life can be observed and finish at the newly-constructed carpark in Ballinroad. A number of bike hire outlets will have you set up in minutes for an experience that will last long in your memory.
Ballinroad to Durrow (6km) :Leaving Ballinroad head east, pass the newly planted Irish native trees with the view to your left of the Old Clonea Church and its graveyard. It is said that Christian devotion was practiced here before St. Patrick arrived in Ireland and there is the legend of the skull-like stone. Heading past marshlands will take you to Clonea. The Atlantic Ocean is to your right; breathe in the salty sea air combined with the aroma of fresh local strawberries.
Passing Clonea the trail then moves inland at Ballyvoile leaving magnificent views of Dungarvan bay and the Gaeltacht area of An Rinn (Ring) and Helvick across the inlet before proceeding. Next you cross the Ballyvoile Viaduct, beautifully restored by Waterford City & County Council with the story of the viaduct embedded in some of the panels of the bridge before heading through a type of tropical jungle type cutting into the quarter of a mile Durrow Tunnel, with tasteful and discreet lighting keeping its magic and mystique alive. Continue on a little further to Durrow for a welcome break at O'Mahoney's Pub, where there is also a free car park available.
Durrow to Kilmacthomas Old Workhouse (13km): Leaving Durrow only a few hundred metres , you can find the lonely ruins of the Durrow and Stradbally Railway Station, a hive of activity in its heyday, now coming alive again. On another few hundred metres to Durrow Viaduct, another impressive stone bridge but what's unique about it is- it is a railway bridge over a road bridge over a river.
Heading through the lush countryside with the Comeragh mountains on the left, continue under the N25 at McGraths Cross by means of a newly installed tunnel and it's onward for Kilmacthomas, crossing the impressive curved viaduct that can be really appreciated by coming down onto the path bringing you to the park below and viewing it from here. Kilmacthomas with its milling history and home to Flahavan's Porridge is making a big comeback with a powerful and highly driven local community ensuring that there will be a big welcome and plenty of facilities for the greenway users. The river Mahon flows under this viaduct. Leaving Kilmacthomas you head past the ruins of the Kilmacthomas Railway Station recently taken over by the community to renovate into a welcoming station for visitors.
Travelling another kilometre and over the newly installed bridge across the N25 road, will bring you into the Old Workhouse of Kilmacthomas (also called 'The Union'). Here are a collection of interesting buildings, which in 1850 housed the destitute after the famine of the 1840's; recalling a sad but important history. There is also a large carpark here with bike hire available in the workhouse buildings and soon there will be a restaurant and a Workhouse Experience. Additionally, Mayfield Birds of Prey offers you an opportunity to meet, handle and fly a variety of wonderful birds, an interesting end to this stage of the Greenway.
There are various car parks located along the route, in Ballinroad, Durrow, Kilmacthomas - (Toilet Facilities) and Bilberry.
This is a shared use Greenway. That means that people are allowed to use it in different ways. People can cycle, walk and run. The Greenway Code is about respecting other people and the environment. Let's all work together to keep the Waterford Greenway a special place, where people are kind to each other and to the beautiful surroundings.
*Keep left and pass on the right while cycling and walking, and listen for bicycle bells
*Cyclists -Please use your bell and cycle at a safe speed
*Bring your litter home
*Keep your dogs on a short lead, and clean up after your dog
Bicycle Hire is available from the following:
The Greenway Man, Durrow
Waterford Greenway Bike Hire, Abbeyside and Kilmacthomas
Waterford Greenway Cycle Tours and Bike Hire, Davitt's Quay, Dungarvan
Bob Troy Bike Hire, Dungarvan
O Mahony's Cycles, Abbeyside