Glendalough, Co. Wicklow
Glendalough (Gleann Dá Locha in Irish, meaning "the glen of two lakes") is a village located at the site of a monastery located high in the mountains of County Wicklow. It was founded in the 6th century by St. Kevin, a hermit priest, and destroyed in 1398 by English troops.
Glendalough has earned its reputation as the most popular place for visitors in the Wicklow Mountains National Park. ‘The valley of the two lakes’ is famous for its wild beauty, its
rich spiritual history and its many archaeological sites. It’s an area steeped in history and atmosphere, with wonderful mountain walks, woodland trails and lakeside rambles. Dotted around the valley’s twin lakes are a profusion of archaeological sites of interest including a stone caher, a
number of early Christian monastic churches, a round tower and a medieval cathedral.
There are many good local walks, of varying difficulty, to be made around Glendalough. Within the valley itself there are nine colour-coded walking trails maintained by Wicklow Mountains National Park. They all begin at the Information Office at the Upper Lake where maps are available to purchase.
Glendalough's granite cliffs, situated on the hillside above the north-western end of the valley, have been a popular rock-climbing location since the first climbs were established in 1948. The current guidebook, published in 1993, lists about 110 routes, at all grades up to E5/6a, though several more climbs, mainly in the high grades, have been recorded since then.