Portally to Dunmore Walk

It was one of those truly warm Spring days that leaves you with a yearning for the Summer days to come. Waterford’s Copper coast spread out before us as we drove along the scenic coast road from Dungarvan towards Waterford.

Around every corner another stunning headland rose out of the water. Between each jutting headland, gentle waves lapped secluded sundrenched coves. The entire ocean sparkled in the sunshine as gulls glided along overhead their cries ringing out in the cloudless sky.

[Not a valid template]The Copper Coast was named after the historic metal-mining that took place along this coast in the past.

Near the start of the pathway down to Portally Cove stands a wonderful whitewashed thatched cottage with red window sills. Purple trailing flowers hung from the old stone wall nearby.

Along the pathway, cabbage white butterflies fluttered along the hedgerow and bees meandered along in search of the next flower. Across the bay the gorse was in full bloom and the scent of it filled the breeze.

As I descended the pathway, the Cove started to come into view. Past the swaying bull rushes, the cove opened out into sand and shingle. The ebb tide had uncovered seaweed covered rocks scattered with limpets, periwinkles and sea anemones.

Across the Cove, tall steep steps lead up the hillside and along a pathway between the mounds of flowering gorse on either side.

Cresting the headland, the reddish-brown pathway snakes along around gullies and over little footbridges. Sea birds call from unseen ledges while the light scent of the ocean replaces the fragrance of the gorse flowers. Wooden benches are dotted along the walk at various spots where you can sit down, enjoy the view and relax.

The cliff side modulates between deep crevasses, flat rock areas and gentle sloping cliffside. Small hedgerows along the pathway holds many colourful flowers including kidney vetch and lots of thrift.

Whether you are peering into a crevasse or looking at the headlands in the far distance, the views are simply breathtaking.

The iconic Hook Lighthouse on Hook peninsula is easily recognised across the bay. The Hook Lighthouse is roughly 800 years old and is the oldest intact operational lighthouse on earth.

After 30-40 minutes stroll, village houses come into view while the top of the lighthouse and other buildings on the Pier peek over the headland. The cliff walk pathway joins a paved road near to the pier marking the end of the walk.