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Where Old Meets Now

The 100 km (62 mile) ancient path of St. Declan’s Way is very much a journey back in time linking the ancient ecclesiastical centres of Ardmore in County Waterford and Cashel in County Tipperary. St. Declan brought Christianity to the Déise region of Waterford around 415AD shortly before the arrival of St. Patrick to Ireland. St. Patrick did not come further south than Cashel in his mission to bring the Christian story to the people of Ireland. St. Declan left Ardmore in Waterford and made the return journey to Cashel to meet St. Patrick on many occasions and so the pilgrim route was born. St. Declan’s Way remains faithful to the medieval pilgrimage and trading routes etched out on the landscape through the centuries. Following these ancient trails with Dr. Phil and Elaine will leave imprints that will last a lifetime. 

5 Day St. Declan’s Way Camino

Waterford Camino Tours

Cahir House Hotel – Mount Melleray Abbey – Ancient Castles – Celtic stories –
Mindful Moments – Mountain trails – monastic ruins by the shore in Ardmore… in the steps of our ancestors. 

 

Day 1: Cashel to Cahir

  • Departure from Cahir House Hotel at 8.45am. Cuppa and scone waiting for you on arrival and your car can be left in the carpark to the rear of the hotel. Come ready to walk with the right gear and your back pack. Try to have your luggage labelled so that it can be transferred to your room. Our coach will collect us at 8.45am and take us to our starting point in Cashel. 
  • We will have time for a brief visit to the Rock of Cashel before the start of our first day’s Camino. The ‘city of kings’ was home to the high kings of Munster who ruled for centuries from the magnificent site of the Rock of Cashel. 
  • It was also from here that St. Declan left on his return to Ardmore after his many meetings with St. Patrick in the 5th Century. You sense the history as you leave behind this iconic pilgrim space to make your first steps en route to Ardmore.
  • Arrival in Cahir at approximately 4.30pm where the Cahir House Hotel will be our base for the next 2 nights. Your luggage will be waiting for you in your room. Time for you to stroll around this historic town or simply to relax in your room before evening dinner at 7pm  
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Day 2: Cahir to Goatenbridge

  • We leave the Hotel at 8.30am for our second day of the Camino. We will return to Cahir at approximately 2pm. 
  • Local guides will join us over these few days from Cahir to Lismore who have been promoting St. Declan’s Way for decades. Whilst sharing the path with them, their stories will help us to connect fully with all who have passed this way before.
  • Afternoon, time to do as you wish. Explore the historic Cahir Castle, maybe a kayaking trip on the River Suir or discover the Swiss cottage. Even enjoy a fresh creamy pint of Guinness to mark the occasion. We gather for evening dinner at 7pm. 

 

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Day 3: Goatenbridge to Lismore

  • This is our longest trail on the Camino so we will set off just before 8am. The first half hour of this walk is the most challenging as we cross over the Knockmealdown Mountains at ‘Bottleneck Pass’ at an elevation of 537 metres. 
  • Apart from this stretch, this day’s trail passes through undulating but beautifully picturesque terrain as we make our way onto Mount Melleray Abbey, near Cappoquin. Mount Melleray is one of the major milestones along St. Declan’s way, although of course it was not there in Declan’s time. The monastery has been home to a community of Cistercian (or Trappist) monks for nearly 200 years. In the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, Irish men who wished to become Cistercian monks travelled to the continent.
  • We’ll have time for a short visit to the Lismore Heritage Centre before returning to Mount Melleray Abbey which will be our base for the next 2 nights. Your luggage will be in your en suite guest room and we will have dinner in the monastery at 7pm. 
  • During our time in Mount Melleray, we will be staying in the en-suite guest rooms and we have the option of attending morning and evening prayer.

 

Day 4: Lismore to Aglish

  • We’ll follow the flow of the River Blackwater as it leads us gently on towards Cappoquin, on into Villierstown before our descent into Aglish. 
  • Return to Mount Melleray Abbey for some rest before taking our coach into Lismore for dinner that evening. 
  • ‘The Baker’s Table’ is our chosen restaurant in Lismore. Here, we’ll have time to relax, enjoy the finest of food and enjoy the warmest of welcomes. You’ll love the experience of dining at
    ‘The Baker’s Table’. 
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Day 5: Aglish to Ardmore

  • Our final day’s Camino leads us over beautiful undulating vales and hills to where the sea gradually opens up before us as we arrive into Ardmore. 
  • We gather at St. Declan’s Well to mark the moment. You will feel a sense of achievement of having walked the 125kms (70 miles) all the way from Cashel to Ardmore as St. Declan himself did over 1,600 years ago.
  • Time for a light lunch before we take our private coach transfer back to Cahir House Hotel for dinner and overnight stay. 
  • Gala Dinner in The Butler Room in Cahir House Hotel and presentation of your stamped passport to mark your completion of St Declan’s Way. 

Phil and Elaine started out on their Camino journey 4 years ago and love nothing more than to roll out mindful experiences in the great outdoors. Tramore is their home. Each journey starts and ends from the shoreline. Phil’s reflective musings are posted monthly on PHIL’S BLOG

 

PRICE: €895*  includes:

  • 5 nights bed and breakfast, 5 evening dinners and daily packed lunches for your Camino. (3 nights in Cahir House Hotel and 2 nights in Mount Melleray Abbey)
  • Reflective ‘compass points’ each day led by Dr. Phil and Elaine Brennan. 
  • Guest local guides over the 5 days.  
  • Coach transfers, luggage transfer, room allocation for the 5 nights and car parking for the duration of your Camino in the carpark at Cahir House Hotel. 
  • Dinner one evening in ‘The Baker’s Table’, Lismore. 
  • St. Declan’s Way Camino Passport and completion stamp.
  • Gala Dinner on the final evening in The Butler Room, Cahir House Hotel. 
    * Price based on groups of no less than 16 persons.
    * Single Room Supplement inclusive of the 5 nights is €100* Additional night supplement should you choose to arrive the day before €90 per person including dinner and breakfast.  (€20 single room supplement)NOTE: We can arrange for a ‘highlights’ Camino along St. Declan’s Way over the 5 days for groups who would prefer shorter distances. 

 

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