Located on the outskirts of Dublin, Ticknock is a cracking walk in the heart of the Dublin Mountains. It is easy to access thanks to its proximity to the LUAS and other public transport links. And there are routes available for all levels of fitness and hiking ability. 

Ticknock: The Basics

Start Point: Ticknock Forrest Park or at Lamb Doyle’s Pub

Length: 6-18km

Difficulty: Medium

Total Ascent: 1460 feet

Max Elevation: 1741 feet

National Grid Reference: O 152 242

Ordnance Survey Ireland Discovery Series: 50

Hike Options:

  • Fairy Castle Short Loop (from Ticknock): 6km
  • Fairy Castle Vertical Climb (From Lamb Doyle’s Pub): 7km
  • Fairy Castle Long Loop (From Lamb Doyle’s Pub): 18km
Ticknock Hike
Rob Durston/Fáilte Ireland

This is one of Dublin’s most popular climbs for good reason. The views over Dublin and the Irish Sea are stunning. Ticknock offers a great network of mountain and forest walks just a stone’s throw away from Dublin. Nestled in the hills just beyond Sandyford in south Dublin, you can drive to Ticknock from the city centre in around half an hour but the walk will make you feel like you’re lost in the wilderness.

The forest has an extensive network of forest trails with pleasant moderate walks through the trees, it also has a tarmac road leading all the way to the top and is easily accessible for children and people with a lower level of fitness.

There is approx. 10km of walking trails through forests and mountains with incredible views of the greater Dublin area from the top of Three Rock Mountain. You can do an out and back if you don’t want to go too far, or there are plenty of loop walks in this area like the Fairy Castle Loop which is 5.5km.

Things to Do in Dublin: The Complete Guide for Outdoor Lovers

One of our favourite routes is the Ticknock walk from Tibradden. This route takes you through Tibradden Woods, up to the top of Fairy Castle, down to Three Rock, right back to where you began via Ticknock Woods.

The trails are fairly well maintained, with some rocky and muddy sections, and are of moderate difficulty with some steep climbs. The main forest roads are very doable for children and families.

For a sneaky pint at the end of the hike, The Blue Light pub is situated at the foot of the Dublin Mountains and is your quintessential example of an Irish pub. In winter you can huddle around a turf fire, while in summer you can enjoy views across Dublin Bay and across to Howth. The Blue light serves hearty pub grub and always welcome instruments should you fancy joining one of the pub’s many impromptu trad sessions.

Getting there:

Ticknock is located in the Dublin Mountains, only a half hour (44B or 144 bus or car) from the centre of Dublin. Or just 3 km south west of Sandyford. From Marlay Park passing the main entrance to the Park on your right, turn right at Ballinteer St. Johns Clubhouse and following the road around the edge of the Park, turn left at the Taylor’s Grange junction onto the R113. Take the second turn on the right and this will bring you to the entrance to Ticknock forest.

Google Maps directions here. Download Trail Map here. For the short loop here or the long loop here.

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By Orla O'Muiri

  1. Pingback: Trail Running Routes Near Dublin: 5 of the Best | Outsider.ie

  2. Priyanka
    August 22, 2019

    This is a brilliant post! I’ve been living in Dublin for a year now and didn’t know of Ticknock forest before, but this post told me literally everything right down to the last detail and I’m going there tomorrow! Keep up the good work!

  3. Virginia Richards Stokes
    August 28, 2021

    Ok I have found this trail in my guide book and on line. I am going to Dublin without a car in just a weeks. How do I get from central Dublin to the trail without a car

    1. Outsider
      September 1, 2021

      You will need to get the Luas to Sandyford and walk from there!

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