The Course

The course is 5000m (5K) long. The course is at The Regional Park, Ballincollig. The course is run on a mixture of tarmac paths, rough gravel trails and wooden bridges. Some sections of the course may accumulate mud, leaves and puddles after rain. Dependent on availability, marshals will be at key sections of the course, or signs will be in place.

Please remember that the parkrun uses shared paths. For the continued success of the event, please give way to other park users. This won't hurt your time, it won't stop you from getting a PB and it will make sure everyone continues to enjoy the event.

Please, wherever possible walk, jog, cycle or use public transport when attending the event. If you do have to drive, please consider car-sharing to reduce our impact on both the environment and other park users. Please also watch out for other park users when arriving and leaving. Parking may be limited so try to arrive early.

Course Safety

The Ballincollig parkrun is a fun, free event organised by volunteers for the benefit of everyone. We wish to make the run as safe as possible, so runners, spectators and helpers are asked to take care about the following:

  • Please be considerate to the park and other park users at all times.
  • Children under the age of eleven must be accompanied (within arm's reach) throughout the run by a parent, guardian or appropriate adult of the parent's choice.
  • Please arrive by foot, by pedal-power or by public transport if you can - your efforts help to reduce our impact on the park and the planet.
  • Please consider volunteering to help occasionally - this event survives only because of your generosity - please visit the volunteer page for more information.
  • Take care near roads and car parks - some vehicles drive very quickly. Please congregate away from the cars and be careful in particular if you have children. If you’re driving to the run, please drive carefully even if you’re late!
  • When running, take care on uneven surfaces - whether on grass or on tarmac. Watch out for cyclists, other runners, pedestrians, children, dogs, wildlife, park animals, vehicles, park maintenance work, falling branches, bollards, posts and other obstacles around the course.
  • Please ensure that you are fit enough to walk, jog, run 5k (3.1 miles) with us. Health advice about running can be found at the excellent Runners' Medical Resource website (although this external website focuses on preparation for a race and does not describe parkrun events).
  • Remember to warm up before the run.
  • If you see a runner with a serious problem, please stop to help them out and get help as soon as possible.
  • If you’re watching, keep clear of runners on the course, and look after any children and dogs you may have with you.
  • It is not permitted to run with a pushchair and a dog at the same time.
  • Runners wishing to run with a dog are welcome, but please keep the dog on a short lead or harness and under control throughout the event. Please also review the parkrun support page article about running with a dog at parkrun events.
  • Runners pushing buggies are also welcome, but please take extreme care of other runners around you. If possible start from the back of the field and try to keep to one side of the main body of runners.
  • While rare, Lyme Disease is present in areas where deer live, and occasionally passed to human's through infected ticks. See NHS Choices website for more about Lyme Disease, and how to deal with ticks.

We hope these tips help to ensure that Ballincollig parkrun is fun and safe for everyone.

Age Grading

All parkrun events use Age Grading to help athletes compare results.

Age Grading takes your time and uses the world record time for your sex and age group to produce a score (a percentage). This score allows you to compare your personal performance against other people's performances even though they might be a different age and a different sex to you - the higher the score the better the performance. The scores can also be compared across different race distances - to allow you to, for example, compare a 5km time against a marathon.

For more information, please see our Support page.

Course Map

Course Description

The course is run in the scenic 130 acre Ballincollig Regional Park, once home to the historic Gunpowder Mills.
The park contains a mix of open fields & grassy areas, with mixed trail, tarmac paths, marked running routes and densely wooded areas.
Runners will traverse a network of bridges, canals and pathways within the park, running alongside the River Lee, with views of the farms and fields across to the north bank.

The course is a very flat two lap course run clockwise, starting and finishing at the Regional Park allotments at the end of Innishmore Lawn, behind Church of Christ Our Light.

Starting from the allotments, head west along the tarmac path towards the open playing fields.
Turn left immediately at the entrance to the playing fields and do a lap around the first set of soccer pitches, taking the middle path towards the Weirs.
At the river weirs take a right onto a gravel river path, now running with the River Lee on the left. Follow this path as it curves around alongside the river, until you come to a wooden bridge ahead of an intersection. Cross over the bridge and immediately take a sharp left to head in an easterly direction towards an open field.
Taking the track on the right of the field, follow for approx. 150m then veer to the right, taking a track that leads over another wooden bridge (single file here), continue along this track a short distance until you reach the tarmac path again, taking a right onto the tarmac and continue along back to the starting point.
Continue to do 1 more lap.

There are many junctions and intersections, with trails going in all directions within the Park. Marshalls and/or signs will be placed at strategic points to direct runners along the course.

The paths are a mixture of new tarmac paths and sections of rougher gravel trails that can sometimes have puddles and mud.
There are two wooden bridges to be crossed, one of which is quite narrow where runners will have to cross in single file.
There are open canal banks along the trails, so runners will need to use caution and not run too close to the edges, unless they want to have a dip and go home wet and muddy.


Ballincollig parkrun is ‘all inclusive’ and suitable for walkers, runners, and parents with prams.

Car parking: Main Car parking is in the Lidl carpark at Innishmore, which is 1st or 2nd left off Innishmore Lawn. Approx. 450m walk from Lidl car park to the run start.
Overflow parking is at the Church of Christ our Light, or the car park in Our Lady of Good Counsel school, directly opposite the Church.
At end of Innishmore Lawn turn right then 1st left for the Church and school.
Thanks to all landlords for the use of their car parks.

Toilets: There is a public toilet situated at the Regional Park Allotments car park.

Misc: Soccer and rugby pitches, picnic areas, a childrens playground, a skate park and outdoor fitness equipment are also on site. There are many signed running routes and a permanent orienteering course within the park.
Also many ruins of the old gunpowder mills can be still seen throughout the park.

Getting There

Location of start

The run starts at the Regional Park allotments at the end of Innishmore Lawn, behind Church of Christ Our Light.

Getting there by public transport

Bus numbers 220 or 233 service Ballincollig. Alight at bus stop opposite/near White Horse/Supervalu. Please see the Bus Éireann website.

Getting there on foot

At the traffic lights opposite the White Horse, head down to Innishmore Lawn.
At the end of street turn right then next left which leads to Ballincollig Regional Park Allotments where the run starts.
Total 10 mins walk/650m.

Getting there by road

Approaching Ballincollig on the N40 / N22, leave the N22 at Exit 2 following signs for ‘Ballincollig R608’.
Then, coming from east, take the last/right exit from the roundabout to cross over the N22.
Then, all directions, at the roundabout take first exit left. After 450m at roundabout take 2nd exit straight through. After 450m take a right onto R608.
Continue along R608 for 850m, then take a left at traffic lights opposite White Horse onto Innishmore Lawn.
At the end of the street take a left for Lidl carpark or right for Church/school car parks.

Post Run Coffee

Every week we grab a post parkrun coffee in O’Brien’s in the Tesco store in Ballincollig - please come and join us!