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Wicklow Mountains National Park

"Wilderness" Camping

Visitors seeking a wilderness experience by undertaking multi-day mountaineering journeys are permitted to camp within the Park subject to the following code of practise. The circumstances in which a permits will be required are outlined below. Camping is not permitted in the Glendalough Valley.

Camping Code

All campers should aspire to minimising their impact on the upland environment by conforming to the following code of conduct;

  1. Campsites will be at least 400m from a road capable of carrying a vehicle.
  2. Campsites will be at least 400m from a building.
  3. Tents will be moved after every second night to allow vegetation to recover.
  4. Campers will remove all food waste and litter, whether or not it is biodegradable. Buried waste would be exposed by foraging animals or by erosion.
  5. *Latrine Protocol; Catholes for disposal of human waste should be located at least 30m away from watercourses and 50m from walking routes. Human waste should be buried or carried out of the site. No evidence of latrine use should remain visible. All toilet paper and hygiene products must be carried out.
  6. Campfires are not currently permitted in the National Park. The issuing of permits for campfires is suspended pending review.
  7. Soap and toothpaste must be kept at least 30m away from watercourses.
  8. Dish and utensil washing will be conducted at least 30 metres from water bodies. All waste-water should be strained and scattered. In no circumstances should waste-water used in washing be poured into lakes, streams or rivers.
  9. Campers are required to conduct themselves in a quiet manner, disturbing neither the local community, wildlife or other visitors.
  10. Camp-sites must be kept visually unobtrusive.
  11. Campsites must be left as found, or better
  12. Failure to comply with this code will result in withdrawal of permission to camp. In such cases National Park Rangers will demand that the visitors break camp.

More information on sanitation in the outdoors is available from Leave No Trace Ireland and the Mountaineering Council of Ireland.

Requirement for Written Permit

A written permit is required:

  1. For groups consisting of more than ten people.
  2. When it is proposed to light a campfire. NOTE: The issuing of permits for campfires is currently suspended pending review.
  3. Applications for 1 and 2 (above) should be made to Park HQ or the Park Information Office in writing, in person or by phone at least one working day (preferably longer) before the proposed camping trip.
  4. Permit requests for events which include camping should be made at least seven days prior to the proposed event.
  5. Persons camping under permit must produce that permit on request for inspection by members of the Park Staff.

National Park Boundary

Visitors should realise that all land in the Wicklow Mountains is NOT National Park land. Many areas are privately owned, and access to these lands is not a right; it is a matter for individual landowners. Visitors wishing to camp in the National Park MUST check that they are within the Park boundaries by: