IN PARTNERSHIP WITH
Take an invigorating walk outdoors and embrace the changing of the seasons …
There’s nothing quite as invigorating as an autumn walk with a clear blue sky overhead and crisp dry leaves underfoot. With a rainfall-free spell incoming – thank goodness! – we should seize the (dry) day and get outside. “Leaf-peeping”, as the Americans call it, refers to finding and photographing fall foliage – we just love the name, and the concept! In parks, forests and mountains around Ireland blazing auburn, gold and orange leaves are on full display, piling up high, just waiting for little feet to kick them around.
Whether you pack a picnic and head out for a day with the kids or take a time-out detour on your usual route home, no autumn stroll is complete without a hot drink on the way, or at the end. Yes, Pumpkin Spiced Latte season has officially arrived at Butlers Chocolate Café. Maybe you’ll opt for a Coconut Dark Hot Chocolate or a special seasonal Orange Hot Chocolate instead. Whichever hot drink you choose, it’s a good incentive, or reward, for stretching your legs and taking a soul-rinsing autumnal walk at one of these leafy spots …
The popular Bray-to-Greystones trail is nicely busy at this time of year as walkers make the most of good dry days. The full route is closed due to landslides and rock falls making it unsafe from the Greystones side but you can still take the cliff walk from the Bray side up and loop back over Bray Head – the perfect opportunity to refuel with a hot drink at the recently opened Butlers Chocolate Café on Main Street in Bray.
Herbert Park is a real wonder in autumn. A visit can be educational too, as Dublin City Council has designed a Native Trees Trail to help visitors identify Ireland’s native trees that live in the park and explore their rich social and natural history. Kids can learn interesting facts about the trees while crunching through the fallen leaves and searching for conkers and acorns, of course! Stop off at Butlers in Ballsbridge for a ham and cheese toastie!
If it’s a quick pick-me-up you’re looking for, hop into Butlers Chocolate Café on William Street, just off Eyre Square. If you want a longer walk “in nature”, take your KeepCup and get on the road to Coole Park and the Seven Woods Walk which inspired WB Yeats to write the poem “The Wild Swans at Coole”. The woodlands trail leads you past a viewing point for Coole Lake and the great expanse of wetland. Not only might you spot swans but red deer and lots of squirrels too – captivating for little ones.
Perched on a height overlooking the sea, from Blackrock Park on a clear autumn day you’ll enjoy views across the bay to the other side of the city, with Howth in the distance. Autumn’s auburn shades are reflected in the park’s pond while the walk around the park is just long enough to work up an appetite before retreating to Butlers Chocolate Café in the Blackrock Shopping Centre for a caffeine fix. Kids will love the playground in the park and the cycle path provides safe passage for those still getting steady on two wheels.
Dublin City Centre
A perfect autumn day in the city combines shopping and a spot of lunch, followed by a ramble through St Stephen’s Green or the Iveagh Gardens on the way home. It’s easy to forget about these city centre parks but they really are gems, especially at this time of year. Stop off at Butlers Chocolate Café on Grafton Street or Dawson Street to pick up your hot drink on the way. Our choice? A classic Butlers Hot Chocolate, topped with fresh cream and chocolate flakes …
Visit Butlers Chocolate Cafés this autumn to try their seasonal hot drinks; www.butlerschocolates.com.