The 12 O’Clock Hills is a hill walking facility situated about 5km south east of Kilkishen Village, in East County Clare. Belvoir Trailhead is the most popular starting point as it has a spacious carpark with capacity for 90 cars. It can also accommodate buses, however advance booking is necessary due to a height restriction barrier in place. Large hiking groups are also advised to pre-book parking at weekends.
The facility offers three choices of trails which are fully waymarked with red, blue and purple arrowheads to facilitate self-guiding. The 5km red marked trail takes in mostly heritage sites, Fairyland and a Kindness Rocks trail with a mental health theme. The 8.5km blue marked looped walk is a more strenuous hike taking in the 12 O’Clock Hills at 309m and returning via the Sunyata Buddhist Centre and the Fairyland facility. The 13km purple marked looped walk is specifically for the more energetic hikers including hiking groups. It takes in the 12 O’Clock Hills at 309m and an additional hill at 252m known as Loughavarra. Families will enjoy the Fairyland facility which is strategically situated a manageable 1.9km from the carpark. The full walk including return walk is 3.8km and is suitable for buggies. A food van operates from the carpark most weekends.
From the upper 12 O’Clock Hills on the blue trail, and Loughavarra on the purple trail, much of County Clare is on view including West Clare, the Burren and the Shannon Estuary, while locally Kilkishen Village and Cullaun Lake are prominent. See many lakes and bog lands, castles and woodlands. Gaze to the distant horizon to pick out the high mountains of every county in Munster. The identification of these views is helped greatly by way of a Sundial Compass on the Upper 12 O’Clock Hill, and photographic display lectern units on the Lower 12 O’Clock Hill and Loughavarra Hill.