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Notice: Charity 21km Walk from Haulbowline to Páirc Uí Chaoimh – Sun 19th June 2022

This charity event is on Sunday the 19th of June 2022 at 10am and it might be of interest to a lot of walkers in the Cork area.

The entry fee is €10. Entry link and info HERE

This is a charity event where participants walk the 21kms from Haulbowline to Páirc Uí Chaoimh in Cork City. This is pretty much the same as doing a half-marathon.

This might make a nice excuse for a walking club or group to do a walk run with a difference.

The route is shown above.

a) The section from Haulbowline to Shanbally is all on a good footpath.
b) Shanbally to Raffeen is on road but it’s reasonably quiet.
c) Raffeen to Murph’s Pub. This is the worst section. Normally this is a dangerous section and it’s not really suitable for walkers or runners. However, the traffic should be a lot slower with the event stewards and the number of people on the road.
d) Murph’s Pub to Passage West is all on footpath.
e) Passage West to Blackrock Castle is on a scenic Greenway.
f) Blackrock Castle to Páirc Uí Chaoimh is on a footpath.

Charity… This event is organised by the Down Syndrome Centre Cork.

Entry fee… This is €10 but you can always contribute more.

The organisers write… “To support our work, we are asking all those that join us for Challenge 21 to aim to raise €21 from 21 people before walking the 21 km. Of course, we would be delighted with any funds raised, but it is always good to have a goal in mind 🙂”

For more info, go to

As this is a linear run/walk going from point A to point B, you’ll probably have to arrange your own travel arrangements.

Notice: RNLI Reindeer 5k Run & Walk in Fota – Sun 5th Dec 2021

The RNLI have a number of marine rescue stations stationed on the coastline of Cork and they are holding their annual 5k Reindeer Run & Walk in Fota on Sunday the 5th of December 2021 at 11am.

The funds raised will support the work of the Ballycotton, Youghal and Crosshaven Lifeboat Stations.

Entry link HERE

From the RNLI…. Grab your antlers. Lace up those hooves. Be a lifesaver. Reindeer Run & Walk is a fun, festive way to be an RNLI lifesaver and raise vital funds to help support Ballycotton, Youghall and Crosshaven Lifeboat Stations. This years Cork run will be 5km at Fota on Sunday 5 December and to get involved please register here

Note that the event is also open to walkers.

RNLI Crosshaven

Grab your antlers, lace up those hooves – help save lives at sea by getting on your running shoes for the RNLI’s Reindeer Run at Fota House and Gardens The RNLI is calling on the people of Cork to do their bit and join the RNLI’s 5K Reindeer Run at Fota House and Gardens at 11am on Sunday 5 December to help raise vital funds to support volunteer crews in their mission to save every one.

RNLI volunteer lifeboat crews across Ireland launched 945 times last year, coming to the aid of 1,147 people, 13 of whom were lives saved. That was an average of three people aided each day – rescues which were only possible because of the donations made to the charity by supporters.

It is hoped hundreds of people will don a pair of antlers or festive attire and join mascot Rookie the Reindeer to raise funds for the charity. All those participating will receive a medal. Runners, who must register (see below), and buy tickets for the event in advance, are encouraged to raise sponsorship which will go towards saving lives on the water.

Every time an RNLI crew launches, they are determined to save every one. But they can’t do it without people like you. Raising money through the Reindeer Run is a fun and festive way to get active and be a lifesaver, because you’ll be raising the vital funds that power the crew. It helps the RNLI recruit and train volunteers and could fund the kit they need to protect themselves. It helps ensure a lifeboat is ready when the call comes, and it helps deliver water safety advice far and wide.

RNLI Ballycotton

Eolan Walsh, Ballycotton RNLI Coxswain says: ‘The Reindeer Run is more important than ever this year. We always have to be ready in case the pagers go at Christmas, but it’s a big boost to know the Reindeer runners have been giving their support at this busy time of year to help ensure we can launch.

‘It can be hard on our family and friends if we disappear halfway through Christmas dinner, but the sea and the dangers it can bring never takes a holiday, so nor can we. Fundraising events are our own call for help, as we rely on the generosity of the public to fund our rescues and kit that helps keep the crews safe when they risk their lives for others.’

To register for the Reindeer Run at Fota House and Gardens or to set up your own
virtual one, please visit

RNLI Youghal

Walk: Marina Greenway Car Park 4km

  • Car Park: Located at the western end of the Marina in Cork City by Pairc Ui Chaoimh, see HERE
  • Distance: 4kms (2.5 miles)
  • Time: Approx 50 mins
  • Scenery: Nice scenic views of the River Lee with a tree lined canopy
  • Flat/Hilly: Dead flat
  • Difficulty: 1 out of 5 – Very easy
  • Noise pollution: Modest. Quiet for a city location.
  • Safety: Very popular walk during the day so it’s safe. Unlit during the hours of darkness and very quiet then.
  • Lighting: Some lighting at the eastern end near Blackrock Plaza. Otherwise unlit.
  • Notes: Road was pedestrianised in 2020. Concrete surface and cracked in places.


This easy walk starts at the Marina Car Park in Cork City and heads east towards the plaza in Blackrock which is 2kms away. This is one of the most popular walks in Cork and has been in use by the citizens of the city for well over a century.

The Marina walk runs alongside the River Lee and there are nice views across to Tivoli and Montenotte.

The Blackrock Plaza is 2kms from the Marina Car Park and there is plenty of seating available here although it does fill up quickly at popular times.

Refreshments are available from the Good Food Bakery or the Proto Coffee Shop.

From here, you just retrace your steps back along the Marina and complete another 2kms to make it 4kms in total.

Overall, a very nice scenic easy walk in the heart of Cork City.

4-Week Couch to 5k walking programme

If you have been inactive for a long while or if you feel really unfit, it can be useful to follow a structured 4-week walking programme.

This is designed to get you up to the 5km (3.1 miles) distance safely over the space of 4-weeks without getting injured.

The key is to do the 3-sessions every week and to walk at an easy comfortable pace. It’s important that you space the walks out across the week and that you have an easy recovery day after each walk.


If your shoes feel comfortable to walk in then they’re fine. Shoes that are used for running are usually excellent for walking.

Note that the distances involved are quite short so you do not need any specialised equipment or gear.

The 4-Week Plan…

Week 1

Tuesday : 16 minutes of easy walking (~1.3kms).

Thursday : 16 minutes of easy walking (~1.3kms).

Saturday OR Sunday : 20 minutes of easy walking (~1.7kms).

Week 2

Tuesday : 20 minutes of easy walking (~1.7kms).

Thursday : 20 minutes of easy walking (~1.7kms).

Saturday OR Sunday : 30 minutes of easy walking (~2.5kms).

Week 3

Tuesday : 30minutes of easy walking (~2.5kms).

Thursday : 30 minutes of easy walking (~2.5kms).

Saturday OR Sunday : 40 minutes of easy walking (~3.3kms).

Week 4

Tuesday : 30 minutes of easy walking (~2.5kms).

Thursday : 30 minutes of easy walking (~2.5kms).

Saturday OR Sunday : 60 minutes of easy walking (~5kms).


  • The walk times are in even numbers so that they can be easily split up into two halves. It might for example be easier to walk out for 8-minutes, turn around and then walk 8-minutes back.
  • If you feel like you’re getting out of breath then just stop and rest. The objective is to walk the distance at an easy pace and not to complete it in a certain time.
  • You can move the days around if you wish but the key is that you must have a day off between each of the walks.
  • Try to do all 3-sessions per week. If you miss the occasional one then it’s not a problem as long as it’s occasional! Don’t make the mistake of trying to compensate for missing walks by doing extra walks the following week. If you miss two walks in a week then just repeat the week.
  • If a week feels hard then just repeat it before moving on to the next week of the programme.

Walk: Roberts Bridge Car Park 2.3km

  • Car Park: Located just outside the town of Passage West, see HERE
  • Distance: 2.3kms (1.4 miles)
  • Time: Approx 30 mins.
  • Scenery: Nice views out of Lough Mahon and across to Fota Wildlife Park.
  • Flat Hilly: Old railway line, dead flat.
  • Difficulty: 1 out of 5 – Very easy.
  • Noise pollution: Nice and quiet as this walk is some distance from the nearest road.
  • Safety: Popular walk with local residents during daylight hours. Get’s quiet after 8pm in the Winter.
  • Lighting: Mostly illuminated. Dark in sections.
  • Notes: Wheelchair/Buggy friendly. A nice short scenic walk.


This easy walk starts at the Roberts Bridge Car Park and heads east alongside the shoreline to Passage West. This Greenway is situated on the route of the old Cork to Crosshaven railway line and is completely level for this walk.

2kms from Passage West

The photo above shows the Greenway sign pointing towards Passage West.

From the Greenway, you can look north-east across Lough Mahon to the southern tip of Little Island.

After 240-metres, you come to a spot which allow easy access to the rocky shoreline. This is a popular spot for small children to throw stones into the water.

After 420-metres, you will see the imposing Rockenham House up high on the right.

This is really a very nice section of Greenway as the trees form a sort of tunnel overhead and there is no noise from cars. If you listen carefully, you may hear the sound of the Cork to Cobh train at the other side of the harbour or the Howler Monkeys 3kms away in Fota Wildlife Park.

After another 100-metres, the Greenway becomes a causeway as the start of a lagoon appears on the right hand side.

As the pond on the right gets larger, there is a nice view across to an old house called Lee Carrow with an impressive Monkey Puzzle tree in its front garden.

Just beyond at the 780m mark, you come to Abbot’s Bridge…

Underneath this bridge, the tides rushes in and out twice a day to fill and empty the small lagoon known locally as Sandy’s Pond.

This is a popular spot at low tide for children fishing for crabs hiding in the rocks underneath the bridge.

As you continue the walk, there is a nice view out over the harbour to Great Island on the other side with a flotilla of small boats tied up near Passage West.

At 1.15kms, you come to the start of Patrick Murphy park and the turn around point for this particular walk.

At this point, you can still see the support pillars for the foot bridge that crossed over the old railway line.

This allowed fisherman and boat owners to safely access the slipway without having to cross the railway line.

From this point, you return to Robert’s Bridge on the left again to make it a pleasant 2.3km walk.

Walk: Roberts Bridge Car Park 3.6km

  • Car Park: Located just outside the town of Passage West, see HERE
  • Distance: 3.6kms (2.25 miles)
  • Time: Approx 45 mins
  • Scenery: Nice views out over Lough Mahon in Cork Harbour
  • Flat/Hilly: Old railway line, dead flat
  • Difficulty: 1 out of 5 – Very easy
  • Noise pollution: Modest. Some noise from traffic on the R610
  • Safety: Popular walk during daylight hours so it’s safe. Get’s quiet after 8pm in the Winter
  • Lighting: Fully illuminated
  • Notes: Wheelchair/Buggy friendly


This easy walk starts at the Roberts Bridge Car Park and heads west towards Hop Island which is 1.8kms away. This Greenway is situated on the route of the old Cork to Crosshaven railway line and is completely level for this walk. In fact, you are never more than a few metres away from the shoreline at all times.

Start of the walk at Roberts Bridge car park

The photo above shows the start of the walk at Roberts Bridge car park. As indicated by the arrow, you should observe the Greenway code and walk on the left at all times.

Greenway Code

Just after the start, there is a series of exercise machines which are spread out over a distance of about 200m .

Exercise machines at the start of the walk

One of the unusual features of this walk is that most of it is actually in Cork City! The city underwent a major expansion in 2019 and the Roberts Bridge car park is now just outside the city limits.

The photo above shows the actual city limit on the walkway but in reality, there are no discernable markings. The new city limit is approximately 240m after the start of the walk.

The walk has extensive views out over Lough Mahon. The photo above shows the view to the north-east with the southern shore of Little Island in the distance.

The photo above shows the view to the north-west with Hop Island, Jacobs Island and the north side of Cork City visible in the distance.

After 1.8kms, you reach the end of this section of Greenway at the Hop Island car park. From here, you turn around and return on the left again.

Overall, a very pleasant and easy 3.6km walk.

Walk Start: Roberts Bridge Car Park in Passage West

List of walks from this location…

Directions & info

The Roberts Bridge car park is situated near the town of Passage West and is just under 10kms from the centre of Cork City.

The R610 road to Passage West is signposted from the N40 South Ring Road.

The Roberts Bridge car park is located about 1.5kms north-west of the town of Passage West in Cork Harbour. As can be seen from the map above, it is situated right alongside the R610 road between Rochestown and Passage West.

The photo above shows the approach on the R610 road from the west. The Brown Greenway sign showing that the entrance to the car park is just 100 metres ahead on the left.

There are just over 30 parking places for cars.

The car park provides access to the Greenway which goes from the Marina in Cork City to Passage West.

The Greenway is located right alongside the waters edge and there are extensive views out over the inner Cork harbour.

Access by bus…

The Roberts Bridge car park can also by accessed by two bus stops which are a few hundred metres away.

The 216 and 223 bus routes pass the car park and there are bus stops closer to Passage West. The stop for the bus from Cork City is located next to the local Aldi store and is 530m from the Roberts Bridge car park.

Stop outside Aldi for buses coming from Cork City. This is 530m from the Roberts Bridge car park.
Stop for buses returning to Cork City near the roundabout. This is 770m from the Roberts Bridge car park.


For post walk refreshments, there is a Bean & Leaf café nearby.

The Bean & Leaf is located alongside the Aldi store and is 470m from the Roberts Bridge car park.


There are two public toilets at the eastern end of the Robert’s Bridge car park.

Walk Start: Five Foot Way Car Park in Cobh

List of walks from this location…

  • Walk 1… Work in progress
  • Walk 2… Work in progress
  • Walk 3… Work in progress
  • Walk 4… Work in progress

Directions & info

The town of Cobh is located about 13kms to the south-east of Cork City or 24kms by road.

From Cork City, take the N25 east which is the main road to Midleton, Waterford & Rosslare.

Take Exit 3 and follow the directions for the R624 to Cobh. Just after the entrance to Fota Wildlife Park, you come to the narrow bridge at Belvelly.

On the far side of the bridge, you cross onto Great Island. Make sure to stay right and follow the R624 which goes around the west side of the island.

The Five Foot Way Car Park is located about 1km west of the centre of the town of Cobh and has spaces for approximately 100 cars. It also has dedicated spaces for camper vans.

On the approach road to Cobh from the west (R624), look for directions to the car park at the cross roads.

After turning right, you will need to turn right again after 50 metres over the railway bridge. Note the main road swings away to the left here around the corner so watch out for oncoming traffic.

Drive down the hill and after 130 metres, turn left.

The car park is just beyond the children’s playground.

The car park is long and narrow as can be seen from the photo below.

Access by train…

There is a regular train service from Cork City which generally varies from once every 30-minutes at peak hours to once an hour at other times during the day. See the Irish Rail website for the timetables…

The train station in Cobh is just 240 metres from the Five Foot Way Car Park.

Access is via a foot bridge which crosses over the rail tracks.

Note that it has some steps so it’s not accessible by wheelchair.

Walk Start: Marina Greenway Car Park in Cork City

List of walks from this location…

  • Walk 1… Work in progress
  • Walk 2… Work in progress
  • Walk 3… Work in progress
  • Walk 4… Work in progress

Directions & info

The Marina Greenway Car Park is located 2kms east of the centre of Cork City.

By road, it is 2.7kms from the City Hall. Access is via Victoria Road and then down Centre Park Road and past the Marina Commercial Park. The car park is at the western end of the Marina and very close to the Pairc Ui Chaoimh GAA stadium.

There are spaces for over 100 cars and the far western end is usually the quietest with plenty of available parking spots.

There is some parking on the ‘Grasscrete’ platforms as you enter the car park…

Note that the car park goes in 350m from the road and there is usually plenty of parking further in…

This car park can be used to start numerous walks which are listed above. The sign shows the approximate distance to various points…

Access by bus…

Despite the fact that the car is located close to the centre of Cork City, the nearest bus stops are some distance away.

The area is serviced by the 212 bus service which goes from the city centre to Blackrock village, Blackrock Castle and Mahon Point. The two nearest bus stops are to the south of Pairc Ui Chaoimh.

The bus stop from Cork City (on the left on the map above) is 800m from the Greenway car park (a 10 minute walk). The bus stop for returning to Cork City is 1km from the Greenway (a 12 minute walk).