Pathway to love at the Ballyhoura Walking Festival's singles event

Singletons could be keeling over due to love along the Keale river at new singles event

Donal O'Regan


Donal O'Regan

Pathway to love at the Ballyhoura Walking Festival's singles event

Singletons could be keeling over due to love along the Keale river on Saturday Picture: Sandra Quinn

LOVE will be in the air at this weekend’s Ballyhoura Walking Festival.

A new singles walk takes place on Saturday, April 29 but men have been a tad sedentary in signing up. Currently there are five females for every one male so men need to get a move on or possibly miss meeting the love of their lives.

It is a 7km walk along the Keale river which goes onto Ballyorgan and includes a visit to two pubs.

Ballyhoura Development officer, Amanda Slattery said the idea is to bring single people together in a fun and relaxed way.

“While also bringing people on a lovely walk by the Keale river and allowing them to experience the flora, fauna and stunning views along the way,” said Amanda.

Leader of the walk, Mike Noonan, from Ballyhoura Beo, added that they hope people will support the event, as it is something different and a unique way to meet like-minded new people.

“Men are in short supply for this, and we encourage everyone not to be shy and come out and bring a friend for a great fun afternoon!” said Mike.

There has been an excellent sign-up from a broad age range but a few more men would be most welcome.

“If you are single and looking to mingle, in a fun and relaxed environment, then call 063 91300 or email,” said Mike.

The singles walk starts with pre-registration at 2pm on Saturday, April 29, then a bus from the Ballyhoura office in Kilfinane, a drink in Daly’s pub at the start, then the walk by the River Keale and a drink and refreshments in Nuala Mee’s pub in Ballyorgan.

It is just one of a range of walks from Friday, April 28 to Bank Holiday Monday, May 1.

Now in its 24th year, the festival has guides from the Ballyhoura Bears Walking Club, Ballyhoura Beo and local communities, leading a packed programme for all abilities – from the hardy hiker to gentle ramblers enjoying the company of local experts in the fields of heritage, archaeology, history, flora and fauna.

This year, lots of new walks and events have been added to ensure something for everyone. 

These include a film screening of Journey to the Centre of the Earth in the Church of Ireland Kilfinane; a trad session; moon lit walk; Slieve Felim walk; nature walk and scavenger hunt; introduction to Geocaching; mindfulness walk on the Canon Sheehan Loop and a mystical walk at Lough Gur, to name but a few.

A very special charity walk will take place to Galtymore on April 29, in aid of the Carebright Dementia Hub – the first of its kind in Ireland. 

Throughout the festival, there are walks graded A – very experienced hill climbers; B – experienced walkers able for a moderate pace and C - special interest suitable for families.  They take in all areas of Ballyhoura country.

“These are true gems, and we would love to see everyone get up and active this May Bank Holiday weekend. The festival is set to be the biggest and brightest one yet, with a stellar line-up of events taking place in the shadows of the Ballyhoura mountains.” said Mike. As well as Limerick, visitors are travelling from all over Munster and abroad.

For more information, visit and click on the festival link, which brings you through each day’s line-up or call 063 91300 or email