On Easter Saturday, April 19, thousands are expected to retrace their ancestral heritage as they take to Ireland’s ancient pilgrim paths to celebrate the inaugural National Pilgrim Paths Day.
Supported by the Heritage Council, this new Easter Festival which was launched by broadcaster Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh, will see a nationwide series of walking and cycling events take place on Ireland’s medieval penitential trails.
In recent times, the popularity of the Camino de Santiago has led to a renewed interest in pilgrim walks in Ireland. On Saturday 19th April events will take place at each of Ireland’s 10 Pilgrim Paths including Glen Colm Cille and Lough Derg Pilgrim Path in Co Donegal’s, Slí Mor in Co Offaly, Tochar Phadraig in Co Mayo, St Kevin’s Way in Co Wicklow, Kilcommon Pilgrim Loop in Co Tipperary, Rath/Dysert Pilgrim Path in Co. Clare, Cosán na Naomh Pilgrim Path in Co. Kerry, St Finbarr’s Pilgrim Path in Co. Cork and St Declan’s Way in counties Tipperary and Waterford.
The local Pilgrim Paths Day event involves walking a portion of the St. Declan’s Way route which runs from Ardmore to Cashel.
The Pilgrim Paths Day walk will be from Goatenbridge on the Tipperary side of the Knockmealdown Mountains to Mount Melleray on the Waterford side. Walkers will gather at Mount Melleray, travel by bus to Goatenbridge and then walk back to Mount Melleray. Details of the event and booking information can be found on the Knockmealdown Active website at www.kmdactive.com. Queries can be directed to Kevin O’Donnell on 086 354 1700.
To find out more about National Pilgrim Paths Day visit www.pilgrimpath.ie or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Speaking at the launch of the festival Chairman of National Pilgrim Paths, John O’Dwyer said; “National Pilgrim Paths Day was created to raise greater awareness and use of Ireland’s historic pilgrim routes. The event is targeted, not only at those who enjoy exploring Ireland’s ancient tracks, but also the growing number of people seeking to get escape from the daily grind of life and take some time out to reflect and enjoy the outdoors.”