Activities in the North West of IrelandBed and Breakfast and Self Catering Accommodation in Donegal, IrelandBed and Breakfast and Self Catering Accommodation in Leitrim, IrelandBed and Breakfast and Self Catering Accommodation in Sligo, Ireland

Donegal

Bed and Breakfast in Donegal Self Catering in Donegal

Capricious light. An artist's palette run riot. Dramatic canvasses painted for action. Colours and perspectives ever changing. Mountains, sugared and peaked. Chattering streams and silent valleys. Bustling resorts. Scattered gold on empty beaches. Pounding surf. Deep bays. A piercing silence. The music of the Irish language. The lilt of a song. Ancient rhythms echoed in dancing feet. A bountiful Atlantic. Fresh food for the table. Fresh food for thought. Donegal is different.

Explore

Letterkenny
The county's principal town is an ideal place to explore north Donegal as well as having a wide range of amenities in the town itself. The Folk Museum, which illustrates the life of peasants in Ireland at different periods of Irish history, was the brainchild of the pioneering Father James McDyer. It is rich in history, and some of the monuments date back to pre-Christian times including portal dolmens and souterrains. There are also forty Bronze Age cairns.

Ardara
This picturesque village is set in the valley by the Owentocher River. Visitors can see the weaving centres where the world famous Donegal tweed is spun, and enjoy other crafts such as hand-knitting and embroidery. There are many excursions to go on in the immediate vicinity. Narin and Portnoo villages have world-class beaches; Iniskeel island can be reached by foot at low-tide and two ancient ring forts can be seen from Dunmore Head, west of Portnoo.

Donegal
Founded by the Vikings, Donegal or Dun an nGall means 'fortress of the foreigners'. Donegal Abbey and Donegal Castle were built in the 15th century by Nuala O'Brien and her husband, Red Hugh O'Donnell, the last prince of Tyrconnel. Today it is a thriving market town.

Buncrana
Buncrana is a popular seaside resort on the east side of Lough Swilly. There is a strong local tradition that it was to Buncrana Castle that Wolfe Tone was taken when he was captured in 1798 after the Anglo-French Naval encounter in Lough Swilley, north of Buncrana, at Dunree Head, Fort Dunree guards the entrance to Lough Swilley. The fort now houses an impressive military museum and interpretive centre.

Killybegs
Killybegs was granted Borough status in 1616 by King James but it looks very much like a late Victorian village built around a good harbour which is now a major fishing port. It is a major centre for the Irish fishing industry and trawlers tie-up here from many foreign ports. The arrival of the fishing fleet and unloading of the catches by the gourmet restaurants of Ireland and of Europe is a sight worth seeing and an experience you will remember. Donegal hand-tufted carpets are manufactured here and adorn Dublin castle, the White House in Washington and the Vatican in Rome.

Attractions

Gaeltacht area
Ireland's largest Gaeltacht (Gaelic speaking area) - where Ireland's social and cultural traditions are safeguarded and eagerly promoted

Golf
A great choice of 18-hole championship links golf courses

Angling
An abundance of angling waters - game, coarse, pike and sea.

Glenveagh National Park and Castle
10,000 ha park housing the largest red deer population in Ireland.

Ring Fort
Ancient ring fort of the Ui Neill Kings of Ireland - rests atop a 240m hill, commanding a powerful view.

Folk Village and Museum
Glencolumbkille - cottage dwellings that span over 300 years.

Tory Island
Ruins of the monastery founded by St. Colmcille

The Glebe House and Gallery
Houses over 300 works of art, including paintings by Picasso, Bonnard, Kokoschka and Jack Yeats.

Donegal Parian China
A hand-crafted delicate product of distinct beauty.

Ionad Cois Locha
A Lakeside Centre, Dunlewy is an award-winning centre at the foot of Mount Errigal. Demonstrations in carding, spinning and weaving of wool.

Ardara Heritage Centre
Ardara Heritage Centre tells the story of Donegal tweed from the shearing of sheep to the manufacture and completion of the beautiful woven cloth.

Cavancor Historic House and Craft Centre
Cavancor House was built in the early 1600's, the ancestral home of James Knox Polk, 11th President of the U.S.A.

Colmcille Heritage Centre
Unique interpretative exhibition featuring the life and times of St. Colmcille(Columba).

Donegal Craft Village
The Forbairt Craft Village is an attractive facility where traditional crafts are expertly finished by skilled crafts people.

Donegal County Museum
Donegal County Museum houses a fascinating display of artefacts dating from the prehistoric to the early medieval periods.

Fort Dunree Military Museum
Fort Dunree is a military museum with special emphasis on coastal artillary and the military history of the North West.

The Gallery
Established as the "Gallery" in 1968, it offers for sale a large selection of oil and water colour paintings, antiques and the very best of Irish crafts.

Grianan Aileach Visitor Centre
The centre, housed in a 150 year old stone church, tells the story of the ancient ring fort of the Ui Neill High Kings of Ireland.

The Irish National Knitting Centre
Centre of excellence for the cottage industry in Ireland

Leisureland Redcastle
Leisureland is one of Ireland's leading indoor and outdoor amusement and recreation centres, offering a wide variety of entertainment for children of all ages.

Lifford Old Courthouse Visitor Centre
With the aid of the latest audio visual techniques, relive the harrowing experiences of the prisoners in the cells below the courthouse.

Triona Design
View the weaving demonstrations and learn all about the art of preparing and making "Donegal Tweed"

Vintage Car and Carriage Museum
Collection of Vintage and Classic cars, Horse-drawn Carriages, Victorian Bicycles, model car and railway collections.

Waterworld Bundoran
Experience the Tidal Wave, Aqua Volcano, Tornado, Whizzer Slides and Water rapids.

Activities

Golfing
Many 18 hole golf courses.

Crafts
Visit the Lakeside Centre in Dunlewy to see wool spinning and weaving competitions.

Surfing
Catch a wave at the World Surf Open in Bundoran.

Fishing
What a county for fishing! Make use of the many, many locations in which to enjoy this most relaxing activity.

Walking
Why not take a walk around the many trails in the peninsulas of Donegal. A fascinating experience.

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