[RWD version 1 ]
The Vartry Reservoir in Wicklow may not offer much in terms of elevation, but it has the advantage of offering several walks of varying lengths, all along good quality trails and tracks. There are also expansive views almost the entire way around and in the spring, it is a garden of wildflowers.
There is plentiful parking on the road at my starting point, or at the Vartry Trails Car Park to the west of the Upper Reservoir. Walking options include a loop of either the upper or lower reservoir, or for a much shorter walk, you can loop the central ‘finger’ that juts up from the Lower Reservoir. I chose to do the entire loop, taking in both lakes, a distance of 16km.
As it was a pleasant summer’s day, I took my time, meaning that I required most of 4 hours to do the whole thing, but you could probably knock half an hour off that. One complaint I’d have, (and I’ve heard this expressed by other visitors, especially those with families, is the complete lack of facilities i.e. toilets, picnic tables, benches (there is one seat on the entire 16km loop.)
Otherwise it would be a great place to introduce kids to the joys of walking. (Are you listening Wicklow County Council?) There are worse ways to spend a summer’s afternoon.