This September, Ireland launched the National Famine Way, which follows the footsteps of 1,490 emigrants who walked from Strokestown, Co Roscommon, to Dublin, hoping to escape the famine. It now doubles as both a live history lesson as well as a hiking and cycling trail.
The trail follows the path of the 1,490 people who left Strokestown and joined ″some of the worst coffin ships” on their way to Liverpool and onward to Quebec, Canada. Only half of those who started the journey ended it alive.
Along the trail, walkers and cyclists can download the OSI Trail Map, which comes with interactive history lessons along the way. There is also a 14-page passport and guide available for €10. The passport comes with 27 stage stamps hikers can collect along the trail. Those who complete the hike and collect all 27 stamps will be awarded a completion certificate at The Irish Emigration Museum.
Walkers/cyclists are also given a ship ticket and information on one family whose footsteps they will follow, making the Trail especially evocative.