Kilmallock in County Limerick is to become a major centre for cycling as the largest cycling hub in the country is officially opened. (Wednesday 29 August 2018).
- Kilmallock Hub will be largest in the country
Cycling hubs were established nationwide following a National Cycle Network Scoping Study in 2010 by the Department of Transport, with the purpose of creating a strong cycling culture in Ireland.
The vision is that all cities, towns, villages and rural areas will become cycle friendly and this, in turn, contributes to the improved quality of life and quality of the public realm.
The quality of everybody’s lives will improve the more of us that cycle more often. We will have stronger communities as there will be interaction between those out walking and cycling in their neighbourhood and towns and cities. Our streets will become more sociable, convivial and vibrant as more of the population use the quite non-polluting and threatening means of transport.
Limerick City and County Council in conjunction with Fáilte Ireland established the cycling hub in Kilmallock as part of a nationwide network.
It is the largest of the 12 hubs around the country with four cycling routes with varying in distance from 16 km to 82 km. The Cycling hub in Kilmallock offers quiet country roads through some of the most scenic and beautiful countryside in Ireland. Add to this you will encounter some of the country’s best Neolithic and Medieval history in some of the loveliest villages and towns.
The Kilmallock Cycling Hub will be officially opened at the Deebert House Hotel, Kilmallock on Wednesday 29 August 2018 at 6.30pm.
The route chosen for the launch will be 2b covering 41 km.
Starting from Deebert House Hotel these routes will take you out through the beautiful Ballyhoura countryside. And after you have worked up an appetite a delicious BBQ awaits you on return to the hotel.
Cllr Eddie Ryan, Cathaoirleach of the Cappamore-Kilmallock Municipal District of Limerick City and County Council said: “I’m delighted that the new hub is officially open to welcome cyclist from near and far. Kilmallock is an ideal starting off point for cyclists, regardless of their experience. You have the beautiful Ballyhoura Countryside on our doorstep for people to explore and enjoy. The routes of the hub are suitable for beginners as well as the more experienced cyclists and would encourage anyone with an interest in cycling or wanting to get fit to come along.”
“This hub will help to bring more tourists to the area as we are providing the infrastructure that they need.”
The routes are designed for cyclists of all abilities and ages.
Route 1 (70 kms: 5 hours; Route 1A – 22 kms: 1½ hours)
Route 1 is a circuit around the periphery of the Ballyhoura Mountains. The road follows the contours of the mountain foothills to the town of Doneraile, where there are many opportunities for refreshments.
There is one major climb on the eastern leg of the circuit; the mountain pass between Glenosheen and Glenanaar. Ascending to 307 metres you will encounter breathtaking scenery here to reward your efforts.
Route 2 (83 kms: 5½ hours; Route 2A – 16 kms: 1 hour Route; 2B – 41 kms: 3 hours; Route 2C – 64 kms : 4+ hours)
Route 2 is a trip east to the Glen of Aherlow. There are fine views of Seefin, the highest peak of the Ballyhouras and of Galtymore Mountain.
Having negotiated the first hill at Slievereagh you arrive into the beginnings of the Glen of Aherlow where you can decide which of the shortcut options is appropriate.
Continuing into the heartland of the glen, past the villages of Galbally and Lisvernane you will finally encounter the iconic and very steep climb of Aherlow.
Although not a particularly long climb, the tortuous hairpins and the magnificent views from the Christ the King statue make this “one to remember” for those who complete the entire circuit.
Route 3 (62 kms: 4 hours)
Route 3 is a leisurely spin to the amenity area at the scenic Lough Gur. The Neolithic peoples who first settled there have left behind their ceremonial stone circle for us to ponder.
Other castles and archaeological remains are also to be seen nearby. Nowadays you will encounter the locals strolling and enjoying a picnic.
The area between Lough Gur and Knockainey is composed of short steep hills, but elsewhere on the route, the gradients are gentle.
The roads are quiet and relatively traffic free. Watch out for the De Valera cottage, childhood home of Ireland’s third president.
Route 4 (70 kms: 3+ hours)
Route 4 is a shorter spin around some pleasant wooded hills near the townlands of Glenroe and Castle Oliver. You will pass the ornate gatehouses of the privately owned castle as you cruise along these secluded roads.
Refreshments may be had in Ardpatrick or Kilfinane