There are so many fun outdoor events to get involved with this summer. Some all-day adventures and some family-friendly festivals! There is absolutely something for everyone. Here is our list of 24 of the best outdoor events to sign up for this summer.


1. Bantry Walking Festival – 3rd – 5th June

Why not head down to the Bantry walking festival in Cork This walking festival takes in two scenic hikes over the course of the weekend both requiring a moderate level of hiking fitness. You will hike around the stunning Sheep’s Head Peninsula as well as the breathtaking views of the Gougane Valley and Lake. This festival also includes a boat trip out to one of West Cork’s islands, Whiddy. You can explore this island’s many historical sites and take in the views.

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2. Fairhead Climbing Meet – 3rd – 5th June

Organised by the Dal Riada Climbing Club, and supported by Mountaineering Ireland, the 2022 Fairhead Climbing Meet is one of the most important events on the Irish rock climbing calendar. We are delighted to see it return. The weekend promises to be full of great climbing, talks from exciting guest speakers, and great craic. Places are limited as this is a camping event. Tickets for the full meet cover three nights of camping and entry to the talk on Saturday night. 

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3. Killeshandra Camino Calling – 18th June

Why not join on the annual group hike of the Killeshandra Camino through the beautiful lake-dotted landscapes of West Cavan? The route is a 36km ramble through quiet forests and picturesque waterways. Be sure that your camera is charged for this one! 

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4. Women’s Rock Festival – 15th – 17th July

the women’s rock festival, although sounding like a electric picnic alternative , is a women’s only rock climbing festival that will take place in the barn in county Clare on the weekend of the 15th of July. This is the first time Mountaineering Ireland is introducing a rock climbing event dedicated purely to women who climb.  There is a technical workshop focused on the fear of falling and yoga classes to prepare both body and mind for the rock climbing challenges.

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5. Junior Paddlefest Ireland – 16th – 18th September

Paddlefest is the largest junior paddle event in Europe. The weekend at the tail end of summer sees all the juniors in the canoeing and kayaking clubs around Ireland descend on one location, giving them the opportunity to try out all of the main kayaking disciplines in a safe and friendly environment.

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6. Vitamin Sea Festival – 16th – 18th September

The Vitamin Sea Festival is now in its second year! The goal of this free, family-friendly event is to highlight the best of Tramore most notably food and the outdoors! Now that sounds like something we can get behind! The program offers a range of activities such as tapas trails, sauna pop up, street feasts, treasure hunts, swimming, surfing, yoga classes, and guided walks. This would be a great event to have on the calendar to cure the post-summer blues!

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7. Gaelforce West – 18 June 2022

Gaelforce West is one of Ireland’s most iconic adventure races and is deserving of a spot on our list of top adventure races to do in 2022. Based in the stunning landscape around Ireland’s only Fjord, Killary Fjord, this challenging course attracts seasoned racers as well as those seeking the coveted finisher’s medal.

This race has 6 unique stages, all presenting their own challenges! Information about each individual stage can be found on the event page. The race covers 60km and is split into; 24.5km of running, 35km of cycling, and a “short” 1km kayak on the beautiful Killary Fjord.

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8. Gaelforce Connemara – 23rd July

It is no surprise that Gaelforce Connemara is a favourite of the adventure racing community in Ireland. A “short” 32km blast around the Inagh Valley, Maamturk Mountains, and Ireland’s only fjord, Killary. This is one to put on the calendar. The race is a 3 stage, run (12.5km), cycle (19km), and kayak (1km) course that takes in sealed roads, forest tracks, bogland, and open water.

This is one of the original Gaelforce adventure races and is always a favourite.

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9. Base 2 Race Harbourman – 3rd July 2022

This Olympic distance race takes place in Wicklow town. Wicklow triathlon club who always put on a spectacular event, they are also always on the hunt for new members. This is absolutely one for the calendar this year! 

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10. Celtic warrior – 30th July – 31st July

This unique triathlon weekend offers a multitude of different distances and combinations of the most popular Triathlon distances so you can fit it into your training.  this is not a Competitive event making it an excellent way of tasting the distances involved in in Long course triathlon.  it promises to be a great weekend of swimming cycling and running definitely want to consider for 2022!

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11. Jailbreak Triathlon – 20th August

The jailbreak triathlon is a novel triathlon Ireland national series race that consists of a swim from a former prison Island across to the world’s second-largest Harbour Cove before taking in a 40 km cycle and 10 km run along the beautiful Waterfront in Cove. before finishing the middle of the town!  so there will definitely be quite a buzz!

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12. The Wild Atlantic 10 Miler Road Race – 21st August

Hosted by Ballina athletic club the wild Atlantic ten-miler road race Takes in some incredible views of North Mayo.  this is the fourth edition of the 10-mile road race and your entry includes an event t-shirt participation medal and according to their website an “abundance of refreshments!”  which will no doubt be highly valued!  probably one of Ireland’s most scenic 10-mile road races this is one for the calendar!

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13. World Masters – 3rd September

On the first weekend of September Ireland will host the World Masters Mountain Running Championships in Clonmel, County Tipperary. There will be a great buzz around this race as some of the best mountain runners in the world descend on Clonmel to battle it out with the hopes of being crowned world champion! There is a weekend of racing to enjoy in Clonmel that weekend, including an “Open Race”. Even if you don’t take part, this one is worth being at!

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14. Ecotrail Wicklow – 24th September

Over the past two years that Ecotrail Wicklow has taken place it has established itself as a highlight of the Irish trail running calendar. There are 4 different distances to choose from, all of which take in some amazing trails around Wicklow. The 19km, 30km, 46km, and 80km all offer challenging but very runnable trails. This year, for the first time Ecotrail Wicklow has partnered with running brand Dynafit for this event. It is bound to be a great day.

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15. Gaelforce Howth 10km – 15th October

Three is always better than one! The Gaelforce 10k Trilogy is made up of three amazing trail runs providing perfectly spaced goals to work towards and a way to push your running boundaries without ever losing interest. The computer 10K and break 10K have already taken place but there is still time to sign up for the Howth 10K! This is your ready-made fitness plan for the year ahead. Of course, you don’t have to do all three but if you do you will receive a very unique medal! All the races are both competitive and beginner-friendly. The races are also all very accessible from Dublin! 

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16. 2022 Croí Corrib Charity Cycle – 2nd June

In aid of Croí, a Galway-based heart health charity, the Corrib Cycle Challenge offers 3 distances for participants. A beginner level 40km route, an intermediate 80km and an advanced 110km all take in some beautiful west of Ireland scenery. In addition to the challenge, this is for a great cause!

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17. Quiet Man 300 – 11th June

The Quiet Man 300 | Audax Ireland

Ok, so you want to really test yourself? The Quiet Man 300km is not for the faint of heart. The Quiet Man 300 features the best scenery in the West of Ireland, featuring a large section of the Wild Atlantic Way. The route is not too hilly. “However, this far west, the weather can be severe. On a good day, it is an easy 300 – on a bad day it is a tough one!”

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18. Wicklow 200 – 12th June

Cyclists taking part in Irelands Premier Cycling challenge the Wicklow 200 which is run by the Irish Veteran Cyclist Assoc climbing through the Wicklow Gap.
Photo by Kevin Mcfeely

One of the most well-known and toughest sportives on the Irish cycling calendar is the Wicklow 200. An absolute right of passage for any Irish road cyclist. The event starts in Bray and takes in many of the most famous climbs in Wicklow before returning to Bray for a hot meal! There is always a great buzz around this event and is well worth doing. if you’re not up for the 200 km challenge there is a Wicklow 100 that happens on the same day!

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19. The Three Peaks Challenge – 18th June

The annual Three Peaks Challenge sportive covers some of the most rugged and beautiful landscapes in Ireland, with a choice of 100km and 75km routes. On June 18th two groups of cyclists will head off for a few hours of spectacular sights around Killarney, spot prizes, refueling stops and food for all cyclists on completion!

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20. MAYO XTRM 200 – 10th July 2022

Looking for a unique cycling event this summer? Why not tackle a mountain bike AUDAX? The Mayo XTRM is a long-distance mountain bike challenge that takes in some of the stunning North Mayo countryside. If 200km on a mountain bike seems a bit much (we don’t blame you) there is also a 100km event on the same day!

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21. The Great Fjord Swim – 17th September 2022

Another great adventure event organised by Gaelforce! The Great Fjord Swim is a 3 distance openwater swimming challenge in Ireland’s only Fjord!  You can tackle a 750m, 2km, or 3.9km (Ironman distance) swims! Open water swimming events in Ireland don’t get much better than this.

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22. Turf Warrior Spring – 12th Novemeber

Run by the same people as Gaelforce West and the 10 km trilogy that we have featured already in this article Gaelforce presents an obstacle challenge beside the beautiful Killary fjord where you will negotiate an 8 km mud run and obstacle course challenge full of climbing, swinging, jumping in the Atlantic and all sorts of other mayhem!  This is a super event to do with the group and is great craic! 

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Arts and Culture

23. Puck Fair – 10th – 12th August

Fair warning: Don't come down for Puck or Kenmare this year -

Why not attend Ireland’s oldest festival? Located in Killorglin in the heart of County Kerry Puck Fair is one of Ireland’s oldest and longest celebrated fairs. It offers 12 hours of free family entertainment! This is one of Ireland’s most unusual festivals and should be on your summer list!

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24. Heritage Week – 13 – 21 August

National Heritage Week in Ireland in 2022 | There is a Day for that!

Every year in the middle of August we celebrate all things heritage. An initiative by the Heritage Council, Heritage Week, brings together communities, families, organizations, cultural institutions, academics, and enthusiasts, to build awareness about the value of heritage and support its conservation! There are events, many of which are free, nationwide. The 2022 iteration of Heritage Week is focused on Sustainability and Biodiversity. Keep an eye out for events in your area!

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No matter what you are into, there is an event out there for you this summer in Ireland. If you have any questions about any of the events, or your run an event you want us to shout out, be sure to connect with us on social media!

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By Matthew McConnell

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