Fri. Feb 23rd, 2024

THINGS TO DO OUTSIDE OF KILCAR

Things to Do Outside of Kilcar

Nestled within the rugged beauty of County Donegal, the areas of Carrick, Glencolmcille, and Killybegs collectively form a captivating region that seamlessly blends natural wonders with rich cultural heritage. Carrick, a charming village, serves as a gateway to the breathtaking landscapes that characterize the region. Here, the iconic Glengesh Pass, known for its winding roads and panoramic views, beckons travelers to explore the wild beauty of the Donegal countryside.

Glencolmcille, with its deep cultural roots, is home to the Glencolmcille Folk Village Museum, a living-history experience that transports visitors through centuries of Irish life. The village itself, nestled amid stunning scenery, is part of the Gaeltacht, where the Irish language and traditions are still cherished.

Further south, Killybegs, Ireland’s largest fishing port, offers a taste of maritime life. The bustling harbor showcases the town’s reliance on the sea, with colorful fishing boats dotting the waterfront. Visitors can indulge in the freshest seafood, explore the town’s maritime history, or embark on boat trips to witness the awe-inspiring Sliabh Liag Cliffs.

Throughout these areas, the allure of the Wild Atlantic Way is ever-present. Majestic cliffs, pristine beaches, and rolling hills define the landscape, providing endless opportunities for outdoor adventures. Whether it’s a leisurely stroll along Maghera Beach or a more challenging hike along the Sliabh Liag Cliffs, the natural beauty captivates and invites exploration.

In summary, Carrick, Glencolmcille, and Killybegs form a mosaic of captivating experiences, where history, culture, and nature converge to create an unforgettable journey through the heart of Donegal. Travelers can immerse themselves in the charm of traditional villages, soak in the rich cultural tapestry, and marvel at the untamed beauty of Ireland’s northwest coast.

Silver Strand (Malin Beg Beach)

4.9 Stars from 978+ Google reviews

Nestled in the scenic beauty of south-west County Donegal, Ireland, Silver Strand, also known as Malin Beg Beach, is a captivating horse-shoe shaped stretch of sandy paradise situated near Glencolmcille. This remote and sheltered bay boasts a horseshoe shape, creating a tranquil haven that can be accessed by a staircase with approximately 170 steps, each revealing breathtaking views as you descend.

Tucked away at the tip of the Slieve League Peninsula, just past Glencolmcille, Silver Strand offers a more secluded and off-the-beaten-path experience compared to other beaches in the county. While the journey to reach this hidden gem might require a bit of a drive, the unparalleled beauty awaiting visitors makes every effort worthwhile.

Upon reaching the bottom of the staircase, visitors are greeted by the sight of an exquisitely beautiful sandy beach. The secluded nature of Silver Strand adds to its charm, making it one of the most dramatic and cherished beaches in Donegal. The beach’s unique stack, positioned off the right-hand side, enhances its allure, and adventurous souls can access it through a bit of coasteering, paddling out directly from the beach during high tide.

The drive to Silver Strand is a scenic journey that unfolds over approximately 90 minutes if coming from Donegal Town. However, the reward is immeasurable, offering an opportunity to lose oneself on this picturesque beach. Featured in the film ‘The Railway Station Man’ (1992), starring Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland, Silver Strand captures hearts with its tranquility, providing a space to let worries fade away amidst its natural beauty. Each visit to Silver Strand promises an escape into a world of serene landscapes and unmatched coastal allure.

Sliabh Liag Boat Trips

4.9 Stars from 229+ Google reviews

Sliabh Liag Boat Trips cordially welcomes visitors to explore the breathtaking Sliabh Liag Cliffs from the picturesque Teelin Pier. Operating from April to October, their boat trips provide an opportunity to marvel at the majestic cliffs, which stand as the highest accessible sea cliffs in Europe.

The tours offer a chance to witness the beauty of nature, with frequent sightings of dolphins, whales, and an array of seabirds enhancing the maritime experience. Immerse yourself in the crystal-clear waters below the cliffs, providing a refreshing swim in a stunning setting.

To plan your adventure, please explore their website for availability and convenient online booking options. Whether opting for a private excursion or joining a group, their friendly and relaxed environment ensures an enjoyable experience. Their fleet comprises three boats, each accommodating up to 12 passengers.

During the off-season from October to April, their boats are available for hire, catering to various water-based activities such as diving with safety boat support, film production, or survey work. Discover the unparalleled beauty of Sliabh Liag with Sliabh Liag Boat Trips – your gateway to a memorable maritime experience.

Friday9 a.m.–7 p.m.
Saturday9 a.m.–7 p.m.
Sunday9 a.m.–7 p.m.
Monday9 a.m.–7 p.m.
Tuesday9 a.m.–7 p.m.
Wednesday9 a.m.–7 p.m.
Thursday9 a.m.–7 p.m.

Slieve League View Walk

4.9 Stars from 27+ Google reviews

The Slieve League Cliffs, renowned for their spectacular beauty, stand tall at an impressive 1,972 feet/601 meters. Despite recent discussions about the car park, a visit to these cliffs remains highly recommended.

Situated on the stunning southwest coast of Donegal, the Slieve League Cliffs (Sliabh Liag) offer a natural attraction like no other in the region. Accessible with a 15-minute drive from Carrick, 20 minutes from Glencolmcille, 30 minutes from Killybegs, and 55 minutes from Donegal Town, the cliffs provide an awe-inspiring view from the Slieve League viewpoint.

Two parking options are available: the lower car park, requiring a 45-minute+ moderately strenuous walk to the viewing point, and the upper car park, conveniently located next to the viewing platform. Note that access to the upper car park may be restricted during peak season unless there are mobility issues.

While the Slieve League car park was once free, there is now a fee of €5 for 3 hours or €15 for the day. Alternatively, visitors can park at the Slieve League Visitor Centre for free and opt to pay for the shuttle bus, with prices ranging from €6 per adult to €18 for a family ticket.

Weather conditions significantly impact the experience at Slieve League, with mist potentially obscuring parts of the cliffs. Exercise caution, especially as the cliffs are unfenced in most areas. If misty, consider waiting for improved visibility or planning a return visit.

For those with limited mobility, it’s possible to drive directly to the viewing area adjacent to the upper car park. The quieter atmosphere outside the busy summer season adds to the charm, with autumn and spring visits offering tranquility and stunning views.

Bunglass Point, the viewpoint next to the upper Slieve League car park, provides panoramic views extending from Donegal Bay to Sligo and beyond. Historical elements, such as the Éire sign from World War II and the ancient pilgrimage site on Sliabh Liag, including a chapel and signal tower, add cultural richness to the experience.

Two recommended walks include The Pilgrims’ Path, a relatively easy trail starting near Teelin, and One Man’s Pass, an advanced pathway with potential dangers, especially during bad weather or for those uncomfortable with heights. Pilgrims’ Path offers a moderate hike with a sandy/stony trail, while One Man’s Pass is a challenging extension with a knife-edge-like path high above the Atlantic. Extreme caution is advised for the latter, and it should only be attempted by experienced hikers in favorable conditions.

Col Glengesh, Glengesh Pass

4.9 Stars from 15+ Google reviews

The roads akin to those found at Glengesh Pass in Donegal contribute to making Ireland an absolute joy to explore. Whether traversing the winding stretches on a bicycle, comfortably seated inside a warm car, or leisurely strolling on foot, there is an indescribable charm in navigating the twists and turns at Glengesh.

Arguably one of the more unique destinations in Donegal, Glengesh is a noteworthy stop along a highly scenic looped drive in the area, providing an enriching experience for those who venture to explore it. For those yet to experience this corner of Donegal, a delightful treat awaits. Below, a comprehensive guide awaits, covering everything from parking details to the location of the Glengesh viewing point.

While a visit to Glengesh Pass is generally straightforward, there are several key details to enhance your visit and ensure a more enjoyable experience. Glengesh Pass, a serpentine road linking Glencolmcille to Ardara, is conveniently located, just a 10-minute drive from Ardara Village and a 25-minute drive from Glencolmcille.

The journey can commence from either direction in theory, but the drive down into the valley offers a more impressive perspective (outlined on the map below). Parking is available at the top of the pass when approaching from the Glencolmcille side, and a small coffee cart may be present at times for a quick refreshment.

The narrow and winding nature of the road at Glengesh Pass is evident in the photos, urging drivers to slow down and be vigilant for pedestrians and cyclists. Glengesh, meaning ‘Glen of the Swans,’ serves as a high mountain pass cutting through Glengesh and Mulmosog mountains, connecting the towns of Ardara and Glencolumbkille. Often referred to as the ‘Donegal Pass,’ the road weaves through the valley, providing a unique experience for both drivers and pedestrians alike.

Despite its popularity among tourists, Glengesh Pass tends to offer a tranquil experience, with only a handful of admirers present at any given time. Throughout the journey, picturesque open countryside, lush green fields, narrow roads, and a multitude of sheep contribute to the scenic beauty.

Upon leaving the main viewing point, the descent into the valley requires caution, as the road narrows, demanding careful navigation through tight bends. Drivers are advised to proceed slowly and with utmost safety. Continuing through the valley, the option to embark on a scenic loop presents itself.

The looped drive from Glengesh leads to various popular attractions in the area. Exiting Glengesh, the road guides travelers to Assaranca Waterfall, followed by points of interest such as Maghera Beach, Glencolumbkille Folk Village, Malin Beg, and more. This additional route adds to the overall exploration and enjoyment of the surrounding attractions in Donegal.

Assaranca Waterfall (Eas a' Ranca)

4.8 Stars from 1.3k Google reviews

The formidable Assaranca Waterfall, situated near the village of Ardara, stands out as one of the most impressive waterfalls in Donegal, known alternatively as Ardara Waterfall or Eas a’ Ranca. Renowned for its accessibility and tranquility, this magnificent cascade offers visitors the opportunity to park right next to it, allowing them to immerse themselves in the visual and auditory delights of Assaranca just a few feet away.

Assaranca Waterfall is conveniently located along the side of a road, a mere 15-minute drive from Ardara, 35 minutes from Glencolmcille, and 40 minutes from Donegal Town. Ample parking space is available right by the roadside, ensuring a hassle-free visit to this natural wonder.

The waterfall is a year-round attraction, but its splendor is most pronounced during or after rainfall, when the water cascades with increased speed from the top into the chilly basin below. Given its proximity to the parking area, Assaranca Waterfall is an ideal destination for individuals with limited mobility, allowing them to enjoy the spectacle without the need for extensive walking.

Travelers on a Donegal road trip, whether heading to the impressive Maghera Beach or navigating the winding roads of Glengesh Pass, often include a stop at Assaranca / Ardara Waterfall in their itinerary. It is the unadorned beauty of natural attractions like Assaranca Waterfall that enhances the joy of exploring Ireland, devoid of elaborate visitor centers and unnecessary fuss.

Approaching the falls, visitors are frequently taken by surprise at their stunning beauty. The crash of the falls becomes audible the moment the car door is opened or the window is lowered. Stepping out and approaching the water’s edge, on a lively day, one can feel the gentle spray landing on their face. During off-peak times, the chances of having the entire site to oneself are high.

An intriguing aspect of Ardara Waterfall is its proximity to the road, allowing visitors to admire it comfortably from their cars, especially during rainy weather. Another advantage of this waterfall is its close proximity to some of the best places to visit in Donegal, including Maghera Caves and Beach (a 5-minute drive), Glengesh Pass (a 20-minute drive), and Glencolmcille Folk Village (a 35-minute drive). This short distance to other notable attractions further enhances the appeal of Ardara Waterfall as a must-visit destination in Donegal.

Sliabh Liag Cliff Experience & Visitor Centre

4.8 Stars from 406+ Google reviews

The Visitor Centre for Sliabh Liag / Slieve League cliffs invites you to embark on Ireland’s ultimate sea cliff experience. Nestled in the heart of south west Donegal along the famed Wild Atlantic Way, Sliabh Liag boasts Ireland’s highest Sea Cliffs, a well-kept secret and a signature point on the coastal driving route.

Immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring landscape as you explore this magnificent region, an essential stop on your Wild Atlantic Way adventure. Against the backdrop of our rugged coastline, discover the rich local culture, heritage, and the warm hospitality of Donegal’s people.

Anticipating a bustling summer season, the Sliabh Liag Cliff Experience unveils a new visitor management plan to elevate your overall visit. Crafted in response to the growing influx of visitors, this plan introduces measures to enhance accessibility and enjoyment.

Beginning July 5th, from 9 am to 6 pm, the new plan restricts general public access to the viewing point, reserving the car park primarily for shuttle buses, traders, landowners, and offering limited access for taxis, buses, motorbikes, and disabled badge holders. This innovative approach aims to streamline the visitor experience, ensuring a smoother flow and reducing congestion.

To facilitate your journey, a Shuttle Bus service will be launched from the Visitor Centre, where parking is free. Operating daily from 10:10 am to 5:30 pm, this service offers a convenient alternative for those opting not to drive. Secure your seats in advance through the online booking system, available at www.sliabhliag.com/book/. Shuttle Bus tickets are priced at €6.00 per adult, €5 for OAP/Student, €4 for children, or €18 for a family ticket (including 2 adults and 2 or more children).

For those preferring a leisurely walk from the Ranger Station car park, an introductory parking fee of €5.00 for a 2-hour or €15 all-day ticket has been introduced. On-site operational staff will be available to assist with parking and traffic management, ensuring a smooth experience for all visitors.

Residents of the parishes of Glencolmcille and Kilcar can enjoy free access to the shuttle bus service, with pre-booking required by telephone on 074 9739620. For further information, contact info@sliabhliag.com, visit www.sliabhliag.com, or call 074 9739620. Elevate your Sliabh Liag experience with these enhancements and make lasting memories along the stunning Wild Atlantic Way.

Fintra Beach

4.8 Stars from 368+ Google reviews

Fintra  Beach stands gracefully on the South West Coast of Donegal, beckoning visitors approximately 3 km from the charming town of Killybegs.

Nestled amidst breathtaking landscapes, Fintra Bay unfolds as a wide, rural haven just a short drive from the bustling fishing port of Killybegs on the south-west coast of County Donegal. The journey to this coastal gem takes you down a steep road, unveiling panoramic vistas of both the expansive beach and the glistening waters of Donegal Bay, stretching as far as the iconic Benbulben mountain in County Sligo. The sandy expanse is embraced by dunes and grassy hills, offering a vast open space that serves as an idyllic escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

In the summer months, Fintra Beach transforms into an ideal destination for a family day out, providing ample opportunities for beach games, sandcastle building, and frolicking in the waves. The sheer beauty of the surroundings adds to the allure, creating a serene and inviting atmosphere for both relaxation and play.

Venturing to the furthest end of the beach from the car park unveils a hidden gem—a lagoon area adorned with shallow waters and captivating views. This secluded spot adds an extra dimension to the Fintra experience, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in the tranquil beauty of the landscape while enjoying the unique charm of this coastal retreat. Whether you seek a peaceful escape or a lively family adventure, Fintra Beach promises an unforgettable experience on the enchanting South West Coast of Donegal. 

Maghera Beach

4.8 Stars from 273+ Google reviews

Maghera Beach, situated beside the majestic Slievetooey Mountain with its intriguing network of 20 caves, arches, and tunnels, offers a unique and captivating coastal experience. These geological wonders, revealing their secrets at low tide, entice adventurers to explore their hidden depths. The beach itself is a sprawling expanse of long golden sands, stretching into the bay and providing a picturesque setting for both leisurely strolls and refreshing swims. However, caution is advised, as the tides can rise swiftly, and currents can be unpredictable.

Access to Maghera Beach is a delightful 200-meter walk through enchanting sand dunes, beginning at a conveniently located car park (charges apply). The journey to the beach is an adventure in itself, with a scenic and occasionally narrow road offering glimpses of the surrounding beauty. Along the way, a mandatory stop at Assaranca Waterfall adds an extra layer of natural splendor to the excursion.

The allure of Maghera Beach lies not only in its pristine white sands but also in the dramatic backdrop of the mountainous landscape. At low tide, the beach extends for miles, offering a mesmerizing view of the deep blues of the Atlantic Ocean in one direction and dunes leading to a countryside rising over 500 meters above the coast in the other.

While the beach alone is a destination worth visiting, it is the array of caves that adds an element of mystery and fascination to Maghera. Nestled beneath the imposing Slieve Tooey mountain, these 20 caves, accompanied by arches and tunnels, beckon exploration. It is crucial to note that accessing the caves is only feasible at low tide, and miscalculating the timing can lead to the real possibility of being stranded by the incoming tide.

Maghera Beach, with its blend of natural beauty, geological wonders, and coastal adventures, invites visitors to immerse themselves in an unforgettable experience on the captivating shores of Donegal. 

Atlantic Coastal Cruises

4.8 Stars from 104+ Google reviews

Atlantic Coastal Cruises, based at Killybegs Marina, proudly presents daily boat trips that encompass both harbor and Sliabh Liag cruises, promising a maritime adventure like no other. The vessel, known as the Sliabh Liag Allure, is a robustly built craft designed to carry up to 97 passengers, all under the watchful eye of a highly trained crew and captain who prioritize safety above all else.

Embarking from the bustling Killybegs marina, the cruise offers a captivating journey through a myriad of points of interest. Enthusiasts can explore Ireland’s largest fishing port, witness the operational prowess of two lighthouses, marvel at a live salmon fish farm, and trace the contours of the rugged Donegal coastline, sculpted over thousands of years. The highlight of the tour is undoubtedly the awe-inspiring Sliabh Liag Cliffs, soaring majestically to a height of 601 meters.

Aboard the Sliabh Liag Allure, passengers are treated to a fully licensed bar and snacks, ensuring a delightful and comfortable experience. As the vessel glides through the Atlantic waters, a combination of insightful commentary and carefully selected music enhances the journey, providing a deeper understanding of the surroundings.

The Sliabh Liag Allure isn’t just a boat; it’s a floating haven designed for a diverse audience. Families are welcomed aboard, and the vessel is wheelchair accessible, making the experience inclusive for all. Even furry friends are invited, as long as they play well with others and don’t disrupt fellow passengers. The commitment to meeting Irish Maritime law standards is evident in the vessel’s construction, equipped with the latest communication, navigation, and safety technology.

Atlantic Coastal Cruises assures that the Sliabh Liag Allure is not just a means of transport but a vessel that encapsulates a commitment to safety, entertainment, and the exploration of the captivating coastal wonders that grace the waters around Killybegs.

Sliabh Liag Walk

4.8 Stars from 169+ Google reviews

The Sliabh Liag Walk presents an alternative and equally breathtaking perspective on Ireland’s iconic cliffs, challenging the prominence of the more renowned Cliffs of Moher. Nestled further north, near Ardara and Donegal town, these cliffs are a hidden gem along the Wild Atlantic Way. Unlike the sheer drop of the Cliffs of Moher, Slieve League Cliffs boast a staggering height of 601 meters above sea level, extending majestically into the Atlantic horizon.

As the rugged cliffs gain popularity against the backdrop of the Wild Atlantic Way, visitors have the option of a leisurely stroll from the car park to Bunglas Viewpoint or a more adventurous trek along the cliff top. Known interchangeably as Slieve League or Sliabh Liag, the original Irish name adds a cultural touch to this natural wonder.

For those embarking from Donegal town, the scenic N56 route leads westward, eventually reaching a junction for Ardara, where the R263 to Killybegs guides the way to the village of Carrick. From Ardara, a southward journey on the N56 leads to the same junction, taking a right turn towards Killybegs and the cliffs, following the same picturesque route.

The journey to the viewpoint, although a challenging walk, unfolds as a full-on experience, approximately 2 km and a 45-minute walk for most, with ample opportunities to pause, capture pictures of the cliffs, and perhaps engage with the charming local sheep. As the path winds through hills and dips, the spectacular sight of the cliffs gradually emerges across the landscape.

For those seeking a more extended adventure, a hike along the cliff-top from Bunglas Viewpoint awaits. Recent improvements, including paving the route with rocks from the nearby hillside, make the hike more accessible and environmentally friendly. The challenging mountain path offers a serious hike, taking several hours, but with the flexibility to turn back at any point.

For alternative paths, the Pilgrim’s Path, a 3 km trek from the village of Teelin to the cliffs, provides a different perspective, while the daring One Man’s Path connects Bunglas Viewpoint to Pilgrim’s Path, offering a narrow 400m edge with sheer drops on each side, not for the faint of heart.

To simplify the journey, Sliabh Liag Tours offer a shuttle service from the village to the viewpoint and back, providing a comfortable way to appreciate the scenery without the strenuous walk from the car park. Additionally, Sliabh Liag Boat Trips offer a unique sailing experience from the village of Teelin to the cliffs, allowing small groups to enjoy the awe-inspiring cliffs from a distinctive perspective. The variety of ways to experience Sliabh Liag adds an extra layer of excitement to this captivating destination.

Sliabh Liag Distillers ,The Ardara Distillery

Woodhill Grove, Hillhead, Ardara, Co. Donegal, F94 EH7X

4.8 Stars from 26+ Google reviews

Sliabh Liag Distillers, situated in Ardara, beckons enthusiasts to step beyond its doors and immerse themselves in a unique perspective on Irish whiskey-making. The Ardara Distillery unveils a journey that pays homage to the methods of clandestine distillers from bygone eras, drawing inspiration from the nearly forgotten tradition of crafting a smoky style of spirit. Melding the old with the new, this distillery embraces the rich heritage of Donegal’s immense distilling legacy and breathes fresh life into time-honored techniques with cutting-edge distillation know-how.

Embark on a captivating tour that delves into the history of Donegal’s distilling heritage, offering a glimpse into the skilled hands and craftsmanship that contribute to the creation of exceptional spirits. The Ardara Distillery tours, available at 10 am, midday, 2 pm, and 4 pm, provide a firsthand experience that transcends the ordinary, making each visit a memorable exploration into the world of whiskey.

Booking in advance is essential, ensuring that each guest receives a personalized and immersive experience. As the doors swing open, visitors are invited to discover the secrets behind the art of distillation, unveiling the meticulous process that transforms raw ingredients into a spirit that pays homage to tradition while embracing innovation.

Sliabh Liag Distillers stands as a testament to the resilience of Ireland’s distilling legacy, inviting patrons to savor not only the spirits produced within its walls but also the rich history and craftsmanship embedded in every drop. A journey through this distillery promises a fresh perspective on Irish whiskey, blending tradition with contemporary expertise in a setting that echoes the whispers of bygone distillers.

Caves of Maghera (on Maghera Beach)

Maghera, Ardara, Co. Donegal

4.7 Stars from 387+ Google reviews

The Caves of Maghera and the adjacent Maghera Beach stand out as one of Donegal’s most distinctive and less-explored destinations, offering a unique blend of natural wonders and tranquil beauty.

Nestled a short distance from Ardara, Maghera Beach emerges as one of Donegal’s finest sandy stretches, boasting an underexplored charm that persists throughout the year, despite its popularity during the summer months. In this comprehensive guide, discover everything from practical parking tips at Maghera Beach to the essential precautions to take before venturing into the captivating Maghera Caves.

The allure of the Maghera Caves draws visitors from far and wide, but a cautionary note accompanies their magnetic appeal – accessibility is restricted to low tide. While the caves entice exploration, it is crucial to exercise great care, as the tide can swiftly change, transforming the caves into potentially hazardous environments. It is strongly emphasized that visitors should only enter the caves if well-versed in reading tide times, ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience.

Maghera Beach, despite its picturesque appearance, harbors hidden dangers beneath its inviting waters. The presence of dangerous rip tides advises against swimming at this beach, reinforcing the importance of heeding safety warnings. However, the beach, spanning nearly 5 km when the tide retreats, emanates an untouched ambiance, often providing solitude interrupted only by the calls of sand martins in the cliffs and the presence of Burnet Moths in the surrounding sand dunes.

The pristine white sand, complemented by deep blue waters and sheltering dunes, creates an enchanting environment that captivates tourists from across the globe. While the narrow road leading to the beach may demand patience, the rewarding views along the way justify the journey.

For those specifically drawn to witness the wonders of the Maghera Caves, careful timing is paramount. Being present during low tide is not just a suggestion; it is a prerequisite. The caves, numbering over 20, accompanied by eight arches and five tunnels, offer a trove of fascinating geological features. Legend has it that the caves provided refuge during Cromwell’s era, but historical accuracy suggests that they likely served as shelter from Viking invasions in Donegal. Navigating the caves may require a touch of light, adding an adventurous element to the exploration.

The Caves of Maghera and Maghera Beach, with their blend of natural marvels and historical intrigue, beckon intrepid travelers to uncover the secrets hidden within this less-explored corner of Donegal. Careful planning, an appreciation for nature, and a sense of adventure are the keys to unlocking the full magic of this hidden gem.

Glencolmcille Folk Village(Museum in Glencolumbkille)

Dooey, Glencolumbkille, Co. Donegal

4.5 Stars from 1.2k Google reviews

The Glencolmcille Folk Village Museum, also known as Father McDyer’s Folk Village, offers a captivating journey through the pages of Donegal’s history, meticulously recreated in a cluster of six small cottages, or ‘clachán,’ overlooking the picturesque Glenbay Beach.

Nestled on a hillside in Glencolmcille, County Donegal, this living-history museum transports visitors through three centuries of Irish life, with each cottage representing a distinct era – the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. Crafted and managed by locals, the folk village stands as one of Ireland’s premier living-history museums.

Step into each cottage, complete with period-appropriate furniture, artifacts, and utensils, providing an immersive experience into the daily lives of the local people during different historical periods. The village also features a reconstructed schoolhouse, fisherman’s dwelling, and a quaint pub-grocer, offering additional insights into the rural Irish life of this remote region.

The Glencolmcille Folk Village is more than just a collection of historic structures; it’s a portal into the heart of Gleann Cholm Cille, an Irish-speaking community, where English has gradually supplanted the native language. The name itself, translating to the Valley of Saint Columba, pays homage to one of Ireland’s patron saints. Ruins of churches built by Saint Columba and his followers still dot the landscape, reflecting the area’s rich historical tapestry.

As visitors wander through the village, they can savor homemade foods in the tea house, where daily-baked delights add a touch of freshness to the experience. The Folk Village also hosts a well-stocked Craft Shop, showcasing local creations, from knitwear to tapestries. Additionally, the Tearoom provides a cozy setting to enjoy a warm bowl of soup, engage in friendly conversation, and perhaps savor a delightful Irish coffee.

For those seeking a deeper connection with the region, Glencolmcille offers more than just a historical immersion. The beauty of the landscape, the fresh Atlantic air, and a myriad of amenities beckon visitors to extend their stay. From beaches and hill walking to golf, diving, and traditional music sessions, Glencolmcille provides a diverse array of activities for enthusiasts. Summer brings forth tapestry/craft workshops and traditional music events, adding cultural vibrancy to the Folk Village.

Admission to the Glencolmcille Folk Village is reasonably priced, inviting individuals, seniors, and groups to explore this living testament to Ireland’s rich cultural heritage. As visitors step into the past, they not only witness history but also contribute to the preservation of traditions that define the spirit of the region. The Glencolmcille Folk Village stands as a testament to the resilience and character of a community that has shaped and been shaped by the passage of time.

The more successful ventures were the folk village and shop and the hotel in nearby Malin Mor.,Admission to the Folk Village in Glencolmcille is as follows (note: prices may change): Adults €6. Senior €5. Group €5.50 (over 11 people) 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *