Looking back south on the road to Sally Gap

Military Road – Arklow to Dublin

Distance: 88km
Climbing: 1419m

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The Military Road is legendary among Dublin cyclists.

Built by the British government in the early 1800s to help them root insurgents out of the Wicklow Mountains, it passes over 3 classic passes and through some of the nicest landscapes in Leinster. It’s tough, but a ride you will never forget.

It’s undoubtedly the most scenic option for a long day ride finishing in Dublin.


Slieve Maan – a quiet pass leading out of Aghavannagh.

Glenmalure – The Shay Elliot Memorial is at the top of this climb.

Glendalough is right next to the village of Laragh, which this tour passes through. It is easy to pop in and take a look.

Glenmacnass Waterfall is 80m high and the road to Sally Gap has fantastic views of it.

Sally Gap – this famous crossroads high in the Wicklow Mountains has great views.

Kippure is an optional climb up the second highest road in Ireland near the end of the route – only for the toughest of the tough.

Military Road – Arklow to Dublin useful info

It is possible to ride up and down the Military Road from Dublin, or to start it in the village (although it is hardly even that big) of Aghavannagh after riding a flatter route down to it. But it makes for a long, hard day. Starting from the train station in Arklow makes it a far saner proposition.

A lot of this route is on R roads, and it can be busy on weekends (it is a scenic road). But plenty of local cyclists aren’t put off by this. The first 15km from Arklow aren’t particularly pleasant or scenic, but it quickly improves after that.

Routefinding is particularly easy on this ride.

Irish Rail runs several trains a day from Dublin Connolly to Rosslare, which stop at Arklow.

Useful Links

Irish Rail

Read more about Irish Rail’s bicycle policies.



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