Ballyhoura Cycling Hub Adventures
“Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of riding a bike.” John F Kennedy
Get in gear and cycle through quiet country roads through some of the most scenic and beautiful countrysides in Ireland.
Kilmallock in County Limerick is the largest of the 12 hubs around the country with four cycling routes with varying in distance from 16 km to 82 km. The Cycling hub in Kilmallock offers quiet country roads through some of the most scenic and beautiful countrysides in Ireland. Add to this you will encounter some of the country’s best Neolithic and Medieval history in some of the loveliest villages and towns.
Starting from the Kilmallock Library these routes will take you out through the beautiful Ballyhoura countryside. Stay at Deebert House Hotel and after you have worked up an appetite a delicious BBQ awaits you on return to the hotel.
If you are a large group and looking for hostel-style accommodation, Ballyhoura Luxury Hostel in Kilfinane is of a very high standard and quality.
Route 1 (70 km: 5 hours; Route 1A – 22 km: 1½ hours)
Route 1 is a circuit around the periphery of the Ballyhoura Mountains. The road follows the contours of the mountain foothills to the town of Doneraile, where there are many opportunities for refreshments at Doneraile Court Tea Rooms or Townhouse Café.
There is one major climb on the eastern leg of the circuit; the mountain pass between Glenosheen and Glenanaar. Ascending to 307 metres you will encounter breathtaking scenery here to reward your efforts.
Route 2 (83 km: 5½ hours; Route 2A – 16 km: 1 hour Route; 2B – 41 km: 3 hours; Route 2C – 64 km : 4+ hours)
Route 2 is a trip east to the Glen of Aherlow. There are fine views of Seefin, the highest peak of the Ballyhouras and of Galtymore Mountain.
Having negotiated the first hill at Slievereagh you arrive into the beginnings of the Glen of Aherlow where you can decide which of the shortcut options is appropriate.
Continuing into the heartland of the glen, past the villages of Galbally and Lisvernane you will finally encounter the iconic and very steep climb of Aherlow.
Although not a particularly long climb, the tortuous hairpins and the magnificent views from the Christ the King statue make this “one to remember” for those who complete the entire circuit.
Route 3 (62 km: 4 hours)
Route 3 is a leisurely spin to the amenity area at the scenic Lough Gur. The Neolithic peoples who first settled there have left behind their ceremonial stone circle for us to ponder.
Other castles and archaeological remains are also to be seen nearby. Nowadays you will encounter the locals strolling and enjoying a picnic.
The area between Lough Gur and Knockainey is composed of short steep hills, but elsewhere on the route, the gradients are gentle.
The roads are quiet and relatively traffic-free. Watch out for the De Valera Cottage, the childhood home of Ireland’s third president.
Route 4 (70 km: 3+ hours)
Route 4 is a shorter spin around some pleasant wooded hills near the townlands of Glenroe and Castle Oliver. You will pass the ornate gatehouses of the privately owned castle as you cruise along these secluded roads.