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6 loop walks in Donegal – where to go and what to see
Take in some outstanding natural scenery during one of the Donegal looped walks.
With everything from remote mountain hikes to dramatic coastal strolls, the gorgeous walks in Donegal are the perfect place to get off the beaten track, take in some outstanding natural scenery and reconnect with nature. If you're lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of one of the golden eagles while hiking in Donegal.

Whether you prefer short strolls or energetic hikes, the following looped walking trails in Donegal should be on everyone's bucket list.

1The Inishowen Head Loop

This route takes you to the most northerly tip of Ireland, where you can see Scotland on a clear day. The 8km Inishowen Head Loop starts at the old World War II lookout tower on Banba's Crown and takes in rough tracks through quiet bogland, winding back roads and a newly-developed coastal cliff path.

You'll pass the place from which St Columba set sail for Scotland in 563 to set up his abbey in Iona. Other notable landmarks include Stroove Lighthouse but the real attraction here is the amazing views you'll see along the way, making this one of the best walks in Donegal.

Inishowen Head Loop
2Tory Island Loop

Tory Island is a mystical place a 45-minute ferry trip off the Donegal coast in the Atlantic. One of the most enchanting things about the island is the islanders themselves, who know how to extend the warmest of welcomes.

The 4km Tory Island Loop starts in West Town and brings you around the edges of the island, taking in some magnificent cliff scenery and ancient relics. It's also an important international bio-diversity area and a breeding site to the rare corncrake so you might even hear its distinctive call.

Tory Island Loop
3Errigal and Mackoght Loop Walk

If you're looking for something a little bit more challenging, this 6km loop walk takes in a trek to the peak of Donegal's iconic Errigal. The top of the mountain includes a narrow ridge between its two peaks that's not for the faint-hearted but you'll get incredible views of Dunlewey Lough (Lough Dunlewy), the Poisoned Glen and the nearby majestic mountains.

Mount Errigal reflecting onto a lake with the moon in the sky
Donegal's iconic Errigal Mountain.
4Kinballycrowie Loop

The enjoyable 7km long Kinballycrowie Loop in West Donegal starts out in Burtonport Harbour and takes in a reclaimed railway corridor that was once the main Burtonport to Derry line. Many of the original railway line features remain intact so you'll see stone pillars, gateposts and gatehouses dotted along the way. It's a peaceful walk down country lanes that anyone can enjoy.

5Glencolmcille Loop

This area's pilgrimage past is in evidence as you leave St. Columba's Church and cover the coastline between Slieve League (Sliabh Liag) to Slieve Tuaidh. From cross-inscribed pillars to megalithic tombs, the Glencolmcille Loop is dotted with historical and religious landmarks. Of course, the biggest attraction is the heavenly views of the soaring sea cliffs, making it a special place to visit.

Stone path along the edge of Sliabh League Cliffs, Co. Donegal
Explore the coastline of Slieve League (Sliabh Liag).
6Rougey Walk

Bundoran might be best known for surfing but the seaside town also has some great walking routes that show off its coastal charms. The Rougey Walk takes in gorgeous views of the dunes at Tullan Strand, Mullaghmore and even Slieve League on the other side of the bay. Get a photo at the distinctive rock bridges known locally as the Fairy Bridges and make a wish on the famous stone Wishing Chair.

The Rougey Walk
Start planning your trip to Donegal now

Once you’ve ticked these six walks off your list, there’s plenty more dramatic coastline, mystical mountains and spectacular walks in Donegal to discover. If you want to go off the beaten track, you can even create your own walking trail in Donegal to hidden spots with local expert Seamus Doohan who was raised in the shadow of the Derryveagh Mountains in the Gaeltacht area of Falcarragh.

Head over to our Donegal destination page and discover more scenic treks and trails to tackle on your next visit to this picturesque place.

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