Looking for an active family break in Ireland? How about cycling with the kids on the Great Western Greenway near Westport in Mayo?
We visited Mayo during the Halloween break, and on one of those cold but dry days we decided to rent some bikes and cycle along the Great Western Greenway.
Cycling on the Great Western Greenway
The Great Western Greenway runs from Westport to Achill, and is broken in to 3 main stretches, Westport to Newport 11km, Newport to Mulranny 18km, Mulranny to Achill 13 km. We drove to Mulranny Park Hotel, and arranged to collect the bikes from the Clew Bay Bike Hire located at the back of the hotel.
We were 2 adults, 3 children, 11, 9 & 6 – we rented 2 adult bikes and 2 children’s bikes and an tag-along attachment for the 6yr which was attached to my husband’s bike. The bike rental company provided hi-vis jackets and helmets. (€60)
From Mulranny to Achill
We set out from Mulranny to Achill, we had a choice to head from Mulranny to Newport and even farther to Westport, but we decided to head towards Achill.
It was a beautiful day and so enjoyable to cycle along, everyone we met smiled, waved and said hello. We could hear the sheep baaing in the fields and it was very peaceful.
There was one short section where we had to go out on to the main road, we went single file and then we were back on the Greenway. The Greenway is ideal for cycling with children as there are no cars etc. and all the other cyclists we met coming against us were very courteous in sharing the path.
When we reached the end of the Greenway we turned around and cycled back. For me the goal was not to get to Achill but to enjoy the scenery and to chat with the boys as we cycled along taking our time.
Achill to Mulranny
The return leg Achill to Mulranny had a gentle hill as we got close to Mulranny so our tired legs struggled to get back to the hotel. The 11yr & 9yr cycled the entire way!!
We returned the bikes, helmets & hi-vis jackets and headed inside to the Muranny Park Hotel and had a well deserved lunch. The next time we will bring a picnic as well so we can take a break and enjoy the scenery.
I would recommend this cycle for all ages, you can go at your own pace and it is very relaxing to hear the sounds of nature, and is safe for kids.
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Have you cycled the Great Western Greenway? Tell us what you thought of in the comments below.