Come take a walk, from Bray to Greystones, Ireland, along the coast of the Irish Sea. It’s called the Cliff Walk because most of the time you are walking on the edge of the land, looking out over huge wide-open vistas of water and sky.
You start by taking the DART train from Dublin, through backyards and small towns until one more curve and there it is, the water spread out to the horizon. Then a short walk from the train station to the beach at Bray, which is so lovely that I had a hard time leaving it.
Looking south, I could see the end of the beach and the starting point of the Cliff Walk, just below Bray Head.
After days of cold rain, this Sunday was a beautiful day and there were loads of people walking around town and on the beach enjoying the weather. But I had a walk to do, so I gave up on the beachcombing (a few bits of sea glass, yay!) and headed for the start of the walk. After the first small section, I turned around to see this lovely view.
You can see from the two groups of walkers that this first part of the path is seriously uphill, but it is well-paved, which made it easier. There were a lot of families out walking, couples, groups of girlfriends, a pack of lads. Even a few solo walkers, like me.
I was surprised to see that even in late October, with most of the leaves off the trees, there were still flowers here.
At the end of the first incline are the ruins of the old gatekeeper’s house. You used to have to pay to walk along this road, but now it’s free. And the gatekeeper’s house is no more.
Here’s a typical section of the walk. You can see it really does hug the curve of the cliff!
And another section, this with a southward view. Look closely and you can even see a sailboat out on the water (to the left of the photo).
The train that runs from Bray to Greystones also hugs the cliff, below the path I’m on. At some points, I could see the train tracks and this was my favorite view of them during the walk. Other times, I could hear the train whistle below but not see the actual train because the angle between it and me was too steep.
And lest you think that all the best views are of the water, let me show you the other side of the path. This hillside had such beautiful textures that I had to take a picture of it!
And this was another view, just a bit further south on the walk. That’s a very old stone shack clinging to the hillside just above the path.
Just before the path turns inland for the final stretch into Greystones, there’s one last beautiful view of the Irish Sea. I was still dodging the rain clouds at this point but the clouds were starting to gather and the water would not look this calm in another hour.
Down a more rock-strewn path, lined with stone walls to keep the hillside from sliding down, moving ever southward.
And just as I thought I wouldn’t see the water any more, the last big bend brought this view of Greystones and the sea.
Now I knew how much more I had to walk! And the sky is deceiving because it quickly clouded over and the raindrops started to fall. I managed to get this shot between cloudbursts. Everyone says Ireland is so green, and they are so right.
One final shot of the water, farther away now, but still beautiful.
A brisk walk in the rain down to the Greystones train station, then back to Dublin, feeling refreshed and renewed. A perfect Sunday afternoon in Ireland!