The Donegal Camino’s new-look itinerary attracts walkers from far and wide – Football News

The Donegal Camino’s new-look itinerary attracts walkers from far and wide

The Donegal Camino is attracting registrations from far and wide, event organisers say.

Now in its fourth year, the Camino gets underway on Sunday, September 1. It brings people from all walks of life around the world and the island of Ireland together to share their stories and enjoy the world-class walking of Donegal, now Lonely Planet’s fourth-best region in the world to visit

“Registrations are coming in well from all over Ireland, UK and US too and we’ve lots of new additions to the 2024 itinerary which walkers, the hospitality industry across Donegal will enjoy and benefit from,” organisers say.

On Camino Sunday, September 1, in Malin Head, Ireland’s most northerly point, things will get started. The seven-day walking festival will run until Donegal’s Camino on Saturday, September 7, when it will finish on Europe’s highest sea cliffs, Sliabh Liag.

Now the flagship fundraising event for Cancer Care West Services in Donegal, the Donegal Camino is attracting walkers from all over the world to enjoy some or all of the seven splendid days of walking and hiking across beautiful Donegal, now Lonely Planet’s fourth-best region in the world to visit!

From humble beginnings by businesswoman and Carndonagh-born Peggy Stringer, the Donegal Camino is now set to attract over 500 walkers to Donegal this September, making it one of the fastest-growing walking festivals in Ireland, on the Wild Atlantic Way.

Interested walkers can choose to walk a day, two, three or all seven days or dip in and out as the week progresses. Registration is €35 per walker per day and each walker is invited to raise €100 per day walked or as close to it as possible.

Registration fees cover direct costs of excellent registered guides, insurance, back up and safety cars along with such fixed operational costs to ensure the safety of all walkers. Last year’s donation was €82,155 and for this year, the Donegal Camino committee has set a target of €100,000 for Cancer Care West Services in Donegal.

Day one, September 1, will once again kick off at Malin Head reaching Banba’s Crown on the Inishowen peninsula. A welcome barbeque will take place in Nancy’s Barn for all walkers and Donegal Camino Partners on Saturday, August 31.

Day two will take walkers to the tranquil space of the picturesque Ards Forest Park on Monday, September 2. Donegal’s highest peak and Errigal at Sunrise await on Tuesday, September 3, however, this hike will be weather permitting.

New to Donegal Camino in 2024 is the Gaeltacht island of Cruit or Oileáin na Crúite. As its name suggests, the island is formed in the natural shape of the Irish musical instrument the Harp or Cruit and this is the midweek walk on Wednesday, September 4. This will be followed on Day five – Thursday, September 5 – by another new walk, the Gay Byrne Trail or Cosán Gay Byrne, where renowned Irish broadcaster, Gay Byrne loved to walk on his many summer holidays in Donegal.

Donegal Town marks its historic celebration of 550 years and Donegal Camino 2024 will spend Friday, September 6, on the gorgeous Bluestack Way, finishing on the newly refurbished Diamond in Donegal Town, followed by High Tea celebration, courtesy of Simple Simons, Donegal Town.

The traditional Donegal Camino Finalé on Camino Saturday, September 7, is on Europe’s highest sea cliffs, Sliabh Liag combining a traditional route of the Pilgrim’s Path and the unique One Man’s Path. An alternative to the Sliabh Liag climb is an enjoyable Sliabh Liag Boat Trip with ticket donations going to Cancer Care West Donegal. The Finalé celebration will take place in Teach John Joe Kilcar with a rousing sing-song and applause for all walkers who take part and fundraise.

“We’re thrilled with the level of registrations so far this year and it’s going to be another fantastic Donegal Camino showcasing the best of Donegal walks, scenery, hospitality, food, people and fun while delivering a true Camino Pilgrimage ethos to all walkers,” Chairperson of the 2024, Donegal Camino, TV and Donegal personality Noel Cunningham who’s also a Director of Cancer Care West says. “We invite you all to give generously and we’re here to help support all walkers fundraising. So whether you’re a walker or a Donegal business we ask you to join us and support our worthy cause, Cancer Care West Donegal as best you can this September.”

Richard Flaherty CEO, Cancer Care West adds: “The Donegal Camino is the flagship fundraising event for our Support Centre in Letterkenny. Our centre provides a range of individual, and group support to cancer patients and their families.

“All the services at the centre are offered free of charge, and we rely heavily on this event to ensure we continue to provide these crucial supports to those who need them. Last year alone, the centre supported over 350 people affected by cancer. Given the increasing numbers of people accessing our centre year-on-year, it will be imperative that we increase our services in the future to meet this demand. The success of the Donegal Camino enables us to do this.”

The Donegal Camino voluntary committee is led by chairperson Noel Cunningham, founder Peggy Stringer, Deirdre McGlone, Michael Cullinan, John Mc Namara and Carl Gysling. Noreen D’Arcy has taken up the role of Event and PR Manager for 2024.

All details of the Donegal Camino 2024 itinerary and suggested accommodation and dining options along with how to register and fundraise are on the Donegal Camino website. Regular updates will feature across social media channels, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. All those who register for the Donegal Camino are strongly advised to book their accommodation and dining early and directly as spaces will fill up fast.

Cancer Care West services support over 350 cancer patients per year in Donegal, and the demands on its services are growing daily. The Letterkenny day centre is led by Clinical Psychologist Dr John Donoghue and along with a team of both full-time and contract staff, they provide Clinical Psychology support, advice complimentary to patients and their families. In addition, services such as Manual Lymphatic drainage is available to patients who require it, Support Groups, Massage therapies, Pilates and Reflexology and a series of other supports. The growing Donegal Camino donation will allow the Cancer Care West Centre in Letterkenny to grow its services and invest further in them as the demand grows rapidly.

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