Ceann Bhinn Éadair (Howth Head) is best approached from Sutton bu there is a wonderful view of the area from the clifftop path from Howth. Howth Head was originally a separate island but through time the sand built up and it is now connected to the mainland. The area is great for birdwatchers as many birds nest in the cliff and the scrubland supports many other different species. The Baily Lighthouse has been there since 1815 but the first one was a coal fired beacon built in 1667. Several shipwrecks have occurred in the area, the worst being PS Queen Victoria in 1853 when 80 lives were lost.
Walking along the cliff towards Howth Head there are many birds nesting and flying around making a commotion. There are many birds that use the cliff as a breeding ground and although i am not an expert i did ask a birdwatcher who had his binoculars and he told me that the most common were guillemot, gulls, razorbills, shag and fullmar.
Sorry for the quality of the photograph as it is rather hard to see the birds at the bottom of the cliff.
While walking along the cliff to Howth Head take a moment to look at all te wildflowers that are growing by the path. The yellow gorse covered certain parts of the clifftop, purple heather was in evidence, as well as navelwort and pink wood sage.
Cliff walk on the peninsula Howth Head is a beautiful walk during the sunny day.
You can enjoy cliffs above the sea and if you are lucky you can see also seals swimming close to them.
It's beautiful when it's windy. The sea is beautiful then.
It's a nice, not difficult walk which can last up to 7.5 km. It depends which way you are taking.
It doesn't contain steep rises what makes you suitable for almost all the ages. One has to be careful at the edge of the cliffs, but the path is far enough.
Howth Head was originally an island but have been connected to the mainland by a tombolo (a deposition landform) and is now a peninsula. Howth village is situated on the north side of Howth Head. From the summit there are nice walks around Howth Head. As I mentioned above I walked the Upper Cliff Walk, but a nice day I would have chosen the Lower Cliff Walk. You can take the Lower Cliff Walk back to Howth or you can walk the other way , past Baily Lighthouse, to the south. Taking this way you will have a nice view over Dublin Bay and you will end up in Sutton.
To go to the summit from the harbour you should take Abbey Street. When you come to the church, take the road on the left of the church, Thormanby Road. Follow the road for about 15 minutes till you come to an inn, Summit Inn. Turn left after the inn and walk on a few minutes and you will be at the summit. If you don’t want to walk up to the summit there are buses going along the main road.
If you chose to walk the Upper Cliff Walk it will end at Upper Cliff Road which will soon take you back to Thormanby Road. Maybe you will see the sign on your way up and take this way instead.
The summit is the highest top above Howth with an altitude of 171 metres and from here you have a great view over Dublin Bay (if the weather is nice). When I first came there it was not possible to see much, but as I came back it was clearer and I recognised Dalkey Island and the pointed peak I had seen from Killiney Hill in the south (the Wicklow Mountains).
There is a parking lot and a map showing the Upper- and Lower Cliff Walks. Because of the weather I chose to walk the Upper Cliff Walk and ended up back on Thormanby Road, so I walked the path back up to the summit as it had only taken about 20 minutes.
The path of the Lower Cliff Walk is narrow (and closer to the edge of the cliffs) and as this was a rainy and very windy day it was too slippery to take that way.
It was a very strong wind, my cap flew off my head (but luckily I could catch it) and it was sometimes difficult to keep the hands steady for taking pictures. It rained and then it was suddenly sunny, then it rained again and then the sun came again. The weather changed very quickly.
Howth Head dominates the landscape around Howth and you can climb up there to the "nose of Howth". Personally I didn't have the time or energy so I just admired from a distance!
Howth also has a castle although I didn't find it. And, as well as Irelands Eye, you can see out to the island of Lambay whcih was one of the first places in Ireland to be attacked by the Vikings.
Apparently some people pick this spot as their "final destination", "last stop before heaven", "ultimate view" in life, and I must say, there are worse places!
We didn't go all the way to the back of Howth Head, but I found it impressive to look at.
Once, when I find the time (probably when I'm retired - only 30 more years, and counting!), I'll go back and check out every single spot in Howth!
Well, during my short trip to Ireland it rained every day, but hey, that's what it takes to make the grass so beautifully green. Look at this field up at Howth Head. It really makes me want to visit the Irish countryside. Ahhhh, another time . . .
You can see Ireland's Eye from this vantage point of Howth Head...we were lucky with the weather here :-)
All around Howth head and summit is wonderful wild scenery and crashing waves. I love to come up here for a Sunday walk.
If you find yourself with a nice day, taking a walk along the cliffs of Howth is a fine idea. The various paths all start at the DART station and are very subtly marked (by this I mean not marked very well) with different color arrows-yellow (cliff path), blue (tramline), red (Black Linn) and purple (bog of the frogs) although somehow the yellow path from the map ended up having green arrows. The paths vary in length from 6-10 kms and are estimated to take 1.5-3 hours and ranging in difficulty from easy-hard.
I was able to find the start of the Cliff Walk by using the map in the Howth is Magic brochure, once I found the King Sitric restaurant, I followed Balscadden Rd to the start of the path. All of the paths share the 1st part of the cliff walk and then go in different directions around when you spot Bailey Lighthouse. At that point, I had enough of walking along the cliffs and followed the shorter yellow (green) or blue path back to town.
For a good portion of the Cliff Walk, I saw no people at all and then a couple here and a couple there, some people were driving up to the parking lot near the lighthouse and starting the walk from there and doing it in the opposite direction. And just like on Irish roads, there's frequently only room for one on the path and someone has to give right of way!
At no point on the walk was it scary because of the height, you are far enough back from the cliff's edge for it not to seem like you are up that high. Part of the trail was muddy and lots of it covered in fairly dense vegetation so I recommend wearing good shoes and long pants. It's not a paved path so it is not handicap accessible. You can see a part of the path in picture #3.