Easy walks in Wicklow you can take with the kids: favourite family walks in Wicklow and child-friendly hikes in and near the Wicklow Mountains, Ireland.
County Wicklow is one of our favourite places in Ireland for a hike with the kids.
We love how varied the landscape is here, the wonderful Irish landmark of Glendalough monastic site, how easy it is to get both views of the mountains and the sea and we cannot get over how remote part of this county feels, despite the very close proximity of this area to Dublin city.
The county is famous for strenuous and long hikes such as the Wicklow Way, however it is also an area where you can go for easy and moderate walk and even just to stretch your legs with the kids.
We go to Wicklow whenever possible (we live in Dublin) and these are our favourite family walks in Wicklow.
Need to know: While these hikes do not pose particular difficulties nor require great hiking experience, I recommend you have proper hiking shoes, hiking socks and drinking water with you and do not tackle them in bad weather.
Looking for something even closer to the city? Look at our favourite family walks in Dublin instead.
Easy walks in Wicklow you can take with the kids
Djouce summit walk
I open this list of easy walks in Wicklow with my favourite hike of all, that from the Laugh Tay viewpoint to the top of Djouce.
The hike starts from the parking lot above Lough Tay, itself a place offering a wonderful view, and starts off like a non-descript path among mostly felled trees.
However, the path soon changes and turns into a stunning scenic one!
Very quickly, you find yourself gaining a bit of height and the view over Lough Tay and its dark waters reveals itself in front of you.
The path is well marked and alternates off road walking with boardwalks, allowing to pass the wettest areas.
The hike is quite varied when it comes to views and starts with views of the lake to then change to views of the seafront and wicklow town.
The walk requires no special hiking skills and takes about 3 hours to complete. It is not a loop and you come down the same way as you went up so, should the kids get tired, it is alwas possible to simply head back.
There are no food stop nor facilities on the trail so arrive prepared and bring food, if needed, or at least water.
The hike is not buggy friendly however, it is suitable for small kids in term of skills requires and the low risks posed by the trail.
Great Sugar Loaf Climb
The walk up the sugar loaf is short and steep and usually fun for kids.
The car park is just at the bottom of the last stretch and to climb you simply follow the sloping side of the mountain, which doesn’t have a path exactly but it is so well trodden, it won’t allow you to get lost!
The incline is steep but there are no sheer drops and the way up is large so you can easily stop whenever needed and catch your breath.
The very last part of the walk is not a walk at all but requires you to scramble up rocks to get onto the very summit of the mountain.
This may sound scary and does require attention however, we all suffer from fear of heights and we never had difficultirs doing this very short last bit, even when the kids were really young.
This walk is not buggy friendly and the last part may not be suitable for very young kids however, most of it is safe and pleasant and a great family walk in Wicklow if you are looking for gaining some elevation, get your legs moving and catch some beautiful views.
A hike here is one of our favourite things to do in Wicklow with kids.
Glendalough is one of the most famous places in Co Wicklow both for its stunning monastic site, one of my favourite Ireland landmarks, and for its many family friendly walks.
Among the several, the one I love the most with the kids is the walk around the lakes.
Glendalough has two lakes, one beside the other, and they are framed by a wonderful walk partially on a path and partially on boardwalks.
The best starting point is the upper late car park, where you also have facilities and usually some food trucks: from there, you can follow the signs for the lake route with is easy and scenic.
Since 2020, the access here follows a one way system in parts of this but the direction you need to follow is always very clear so there is not risk of getting lost.
The walk is easy and nice for the kids and the part on the boardwalks is also buggy friendly (and scooter friendly), which is of course a plus if you have a baby or a younger sibling who may not feel like walking.
As well as this main route, if you have older kids you can go up the Paulanass waterfall and St Kevin’s cell which is steep and short and quite fun for kids as feels slightly adventurous thanks to the elevation gain.
Devil’s Glen Forest Walk
Devil’s glen is a wonderful place for a family walk in Wicklow if you feel like exploring woodlads.
The path here forms a loop and it is fun for kids and adults as at the start it has some woodland art hanging from the trees which is unexpected and interesting.
The path leads you to a small river and loops back upto the car part, which is perfect for kids since it keeps the walk varied and new.
This is a fun place for forest school activities and I recommend you bring a nature book so your kids can collect stones and fallen leaves.
Lough Dan Walk
The walk to Lough Dan is one of my favourite walks in Wicklow and one that our kids have loved since a very young age thanks to the animal spotting opportunities and the beautiful Lough Dan beach at the end.
We usually start the walk from the paved stretch of the road road at Lough Tay.
The firts part of the walk follows a paved road that goes to the bottom of the hill and then the road turns into a nice forest trail, unpaved.
The path is easy to follow and beautiful: part is under trees but very quickly it opens up onto wide lawns where usually you can see deer running!
Bring kids binoculars for a closer look but there are so many of them, you won’t miss them!
The hike ends on Lough Dan beach which is remote and stunning.
There is nothing here so you need to bring your own picnic and water but this is what makes it so beautiful: you can rest, play and swim here, often in relative solitude.
The walk is stroller friendly (we did it with our Maclaren the first time) however, parts of the trail are better if you have an all terrain stroller and be prepared for the last bit on the way back to be pretty steep when pushing a buggy!
Crone Wood and Powerscourt Waterfall Walk
Crone wood is a nice hike that is made special by the view over the Powerscourt waterfall which is a very cool to see, no matter how you approach it!
The walk is harder than others in this list as there is much higher elevation gain however, it is ok for older kids and we also did it with a baby in the hiking carrier without majour strain, despite the walk being marked as strenuous.
I think this is a good family walk in Wicklow if you have kids who love hiking and already have some experience in that regard.
Bray Cliff Walk on Bray Head: Bray to Greystones walk
A lovely family walks in Wicklow with nice views over the Irish sea is the Bray head walk, connecting the town of Bray with Graystones.
The walk is easy and the best way to do it with the children is to walk from start to finish and the get the DART back to regain your starting point.
The walk is not buggy friendly but poses no problems to kids who like to walk, despite technically being a cliff walk ( it is much less exposed to shops than the Howth Cliff Walk).
The path is easy and only occasionallu a little rocky and it has nice views over he sea and the dart, wnich tou see from above!
We love finishing this walk in one of the lovely cafes in Greystones – last time, offering chocolate as and end of hike treat worked as great motivation for our kids!
Avondale House walks
Avondale House is a place we often go to with the kids as it has a wonderful playgrounds and also some nice family walks such as the exotic tree trail and Cairn walk.
The estate has strong connection with the Forestry Society of Ireland and a wonderful exotic tree trail with stunning species such as aromatic eucalyptus!
The trail is mostly flat, forms a loop and it only takes aout 1 hour to walk.
A slightly longer trail here is the centenary trail, that is also suitable for kids but will eep you walking about 1.5 hours and the Avondale river park which is longer and more tiring, most suited for older kids.
Vale of Clara Forest Walk
The Vale of Clara is a wonderful place for a forest walk with the kids.
The paths are well marked and they bring you into the woods, which are lovely and soothing here: we love to come in particularly in the easy autumn when you can enjoy the silence, broken only by the crunching on fallen leaves under your feet!
What to bring on your walks in Wicklow
Our hiking essentials for these hikes are pretty basic.
We recommend you have hiking shoes and socks, layers and windbreaker, sun screen, sun hat and sunglasses for very bright day, reusable water bottle and day pack for you and the kids (you can find our favourite backpacks for kids here)
I hope you enjoyed this overview of easy family walks in Wicklow and it gave you inspiration to get outside (once regulation allow).
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