Please do not bring dogs on any section of the Way which crosses private farmland. If walking from Donegal Town the first section of private farmland is at Owenboy.
The Bluestack Way is a 65km route through a true wilderness area of County Donegal in the north west of Ireland with great views as it traverses the Bluestack Mountains, a range of low rounded hills. It connects Donegal town with the town of Ardara on the west coast. Along the way the route passes by scenic Lough Eske, and then wends its way across the foothills of the Bluestacks to reach an area called Disert, where there is an ancient mountain graveyard. West of Disert the route goes over rough and remote high moorland terrain between Binbane and Cloghmeen Hill before descending along the Owenroe river to reach a bog road. This is followed across isolated bogland at Meenawannia to reach Glenties. From Glenties an enjoyable stretch which includes a very pleasant riverside walk along the Owenea river takes the route to the town of Ardara. Overnight accommodation options in the populated areas are very good. The terrain of the route consists generally of bog roads, open and often wet moorland, and mainly quiet tarmac public roads. In wet or otherwise unsuitable weather it is possible to avoid the open moorland stretch west of Disert by taking an alternative route to Glenties. The aggregate ascent over the route is 1430m, but other than the stretch up onto the pass between Binbane and Cloghmeen Hill, there are no significant climbs.
Maps and other information
In Donegal Town - paid parking in most of the town centre car parks as well as for on street parking (50 cent per hour on street and 30 cent per hour in car parks in September 2022)
In Glenties - free street parking and the car park at the chapel is also free
In Ardara - free street parking and also free parking in the town's public car park (behind the main street about half way down the hill)
In Donegal Town - All services
On the route at Lough Eske - two 4 star hotels serve food and drink
In Glenties - All services
In Ardara - All services
21 kms or 31% of the Way follows local roads.
The Bluestack Way - Bluestack Environmental Group - available from The Four Masters Bookshop, Donegal Town
In Donegal Town: Extensive bus services - Check with Bus Eireann.
In Ardara: Limited bus service Check with Bus Eireann.