They may be famous throughout the world but the mountains of Ireland, whilst many, are of relatively low when levels compared to other ranges in the British Isles and Europe. As such they will not attract the serious climber who seeks out more demanding challenges in Austria, Switzerland, France, and Spain to name but a few other European countries. However, because of their lack of height, most ranges are eminently suitable for hiking for people of all ages and have some outstandingly superb trails which visitors can explore.
Despite their height from a scenic point of view, the mountains of Ireland have a lot to offer as most are on the coastal periphery of the island and provide stunning views of the Irish coast. The center of the island of Ireland is generally flat bogland, surrounded by mountain ranges many of which extend their tentacles to the coastlines of the country.
the Mourne Mountains
The most notable of these are the Mourne Mountains on the Northeast of the island, the Derryveagh Mountains in County Donegal and the Wicklow Mountains, just south of Dublin City, in the east of the country. The mountains and the Lakes of Killarney are, of course, probably the most famous in Ireland, being part of the Macgillycuddy Reeks in which Carrantuohill stands as the highest peak on the Island of Ireland at 3,409 feet.
the Slieve Bloom Mountains
The exception to the general flatlands of middle Ireland is the Slieve Bloom Mountains which straddle the counties of Offaly and Tipperary mainly. The Slieve Bloom Way is a noted walking and hiking trail very popular with visitors.
The main mountain ranges of Ireland are as follows:
- The Macgillycuddy Reeks (South West)
- The Comeragh Mountains (South)
- The Blackstairs Mountains (South East)
- The Wicklow Mountains (East)
- The Mournes (North-East)
- Glens of Antrim (North East)
- Sperrin Mountains (North)
- Blue Stack Mountains (North West)
- Derryveagh Mountains (North West)
- Ox Mountains (West)
- Nephin Beg Mountains
- Maumturks Mountains/Twelve Pins (West)
- The Galtee Mountains (Mid West)
- Slieve Bloom Mountains (Midlands)