North West Ireland Tourism
Visitor Guide to Mayo, Sligo, Donegal, Roscommon, Leitrim, Cavan & Monaghan
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Donegal is renowned all over the world for its spectacular scenery, endless unspoilt Atlantic coastline, long stretches of sandy beaches, sheltered inlets and as the songs goes, the ‘hills of Donegal’. Two mountain ranges form the ‘hills of Donegal’. The Bluestack Mountains run towards the south and the Derryveagh Mountains run to the north. The stunning Slieve League Cliffs which are the highest sea cliffs in Europe are also worth a visit when touring the region as it Malin Head, which is the most northerly point on the island of Ireland. 

Located in the northwest of Ireland, beautiful and wild Donegal is an ideal place to recharge. Away from the hustle and bustle of the cities is is one of Ireland’s best-loved holiday destinations. There are numerous mountains to climb, extensive stretches of coastline to explore, lots of quaint towns & villages to stop into for a break amongst the generally beautiful countryside. Donegal county borders counties Leitrim, Derry, Tyrone and Fermanagh which is in Northern Ireland.

Many visitors to Donegal will commence their tour in Bundoran in the south of the county. Bundoran is a  lively seaside town with lots to offer including fine restaurants, golden sandy beach which is popular for surfing and nightly entertainment in some of the many pubs in the town. For more adventurous travellers there are many outdoor pursuits to enjoy including a wide range of watersports like windsurfing, surfing, kite surfing along with with great golf courses, fishing and hiking opportunities.

From Bundoran you can head north to experience Donegal Town, which is steeped in history and has excellent pubs, restaurants and shopping.

Leaving Donegal town, you can drive west through Dunkineely and out towards the village of Killybegs. Killybegs is the main fishing port of the region and is popular with anyone into watersports or hill walking.

Any time spent in this area of Donegal would be incomplete if you don't visit the awesome Slieve League Cliffs which are, at 600 metres tall, the highest sea cliffs in Europe. 

Travelling northwards you’ll find yourself in the centre of the Donegal Gaeltacht. By spending a few days here you’ll find you're speaking a few words of Irish (Gaelic) before you know it. To the northwest you'll find the town of Dungloe, which is popular for visitors throughout the year but particularly over the August bank holiday weekend when the Mary of Dungloe Festival features prominiently on the Donegal festival calendar.

Gweedore on the coast of Donegal has some of the most spectacular in the whole country. It's fine sandy beaches and wild mountain ranges make it a wonderful places to explore.

Near Glenties is Glenveagh National Park which is made up of over 13,000 hectares of mountains, pristine forests, crystal clean lakes and blanket bog lands is one of the main attractions inthis area and worth a visit.

This area also has many excellent links golf courses such as Dunfanaghy Golf Course and it is worth stopping for a walk on the gorgeous Killyhoey Beach if you have time.

Moving onto Donegal’s main shopping town at Letterkenny, you'll find vibrant nightlife, cosy pubs and lovely restaurants. From Letterkenny drive northeastwards to the Inishowen Peninsula and the the seaside town of Buncrana.  Popular activities here include golfing, windsurfing, sailing, equestrian and fishing on the shores of Lough Swilly and on the River Crana.

To the very north of the Inishowen Peninsula is Malin Head, familar to those following the fishing forecasts. It is Ireland’s most northerly point and has wonderful scenery, long stretches of fine sandy beaches along with great angling and watersports.

 Here is a small sample of what is availalable for you but don't take our word for it, come and see it all for yourself!
Adventure One surf school offer surfing and paddle boarding lessons for enthusiastic beginners to advanced surfers. The surf school operates from their centre at Ballyheirnan Bay in Fanad. The team of qualified instructors has over forty years’ experience combined and are extremely passionate about the training and will enjoy bringing you from catching your very first wave to becoming a skilled and happy surfer! The centre also welcomes schools, youth groups, Stag/Hen parties, Social clubs, as well as families and individuals who wish to surf.
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Ard na Breatha a fine, guesthouse on the outskirts of Donegal town in County Donegal. It is only a few minutes drive from the centre of Donegal. As soon as you step through the doors of this wonderful home you feel like your right in the heart of the countryside. Each of the bedrooms is tastefully decorated and all are equipped with bath and shower. The period style is carried into the bedrooms with pine floors, wrought iron beds, TV, hairdryer as well as tea/coffee making facilities and internet access. The lounge offers full bar facilities as well as the warmth of a large open fire. Book your table at the on-site restaurant where you will be amazed at the quality of cuisine from the finest in local and organic produce.
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Atlantic Guesthouse is one of the best-established guesthouses in the heart of Donegal Town. This family run property has for over 50 years experience welcoming guests from all over the world, with many visitors returning year after year. This is an ideal location, situated beside all amenities and only a minutes walk from the bus stop. Also from here you can explore all what Donegal has to offer.
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Aura Letterkenny Leisure Complex offers excellent and state of the art facilities for health and fitness. The centre has a large selection of exercise equipment providing for a range of fitness and health facilities for all members. The gym’s indoor facilities include a mirrored sprung floored studio used for aerobics, dance, strength training and much more, and also a large multi-functional hall suitable for indoor soccer, basketball, badminton and many other activities. The 25 meter swimming pool caters for children of all ages to adults, so whether you or your child is taking their first dip or completing a lifeguard course, Aura Letterkenny Leisure will help you foster a love of swimming!
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Ballyraine Guesthouse is a stylish modern Guesthousel ocated on the R245 just 15 minutes walk from Letterkenny town centre. With many local nightclubs, pubs, restaurants and a theatre, the Guesthouse offers the ideal base for the visitor wishing to tour the North West. Choose from the breakfast menu and enjoy a Light Continental or a Full Irish Breakfast. The central location and ample private parking makes Ballyraine Guesthouse your ideal location for an overnight or weekend break.
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Ballyshannon Folk Festival is one of the longest running festivals of its kind in Ireland. Taking place annually in early August, prominent performers from the Irish Music scene perform along with workshops, busking competitions and street entertainment! With free open air concerts, live pub sessions, workshops and a new talent being showcased, The Ballyshannon Folk and Traditional Music Festival is garaunteed to keep you entertained.
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Ballyshannon Leisure Centre has a 25m indoor heated pool, sauna, steam room and gym. The centre also runs children's swimming lessons, adults swimming lessons, competitive swim session, private swim lessons, fast moving circuits and aqua aerobics classes.
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Bunbeg House a charming friendly guesthouse situated in the village of Bunbeg, Co. Donegal. Overlooking the harbour at the mouth of the clady river famous for its salmon fishing. Bunbeg House was originally a corn mill dating back in the mid 19th Century and has been run by generations of the same family since opening its doors in the 1970’s. There have been many renovations since then to its current comfortable modern and yet distinguished charm. Relaxed homely atmosphere, fully licensed resident lounge with fresh home made cooking the guesthouse is the ideal location to explore the Gaeltacht of Donegal.
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Bundoran Surf Co offer surf lessons, accommodation and all equipment for sale in their surf shop in Bundoran, Co. Donegal. The surf school was set-up in 2005 by surf enthusiasts Pete Craig and Aidan Browne. The team at Bundoran Surf Co will make sure you get the best surfing tuition in their Surf Academy at one of Ireland's best surfing beaches. For those looking for a place to rest a tired head after a day on the waves, the lodge adjoining the surf school and shop is the ideal spot.
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The Castlefin X-treme Karting outdoor racing track is set out over 9 acres and provides the thrills of hair pins, full length straights and sweeping bends. The track is raced in an anti clockwise direction on tarmac with full run off points. The floodlit and marshalled tarmac track has been specially designed for high speed Kart racing. For younger drivers Castlefin X-treme Karting have Cadet Karts designed for 10 -14 year olds. For competition racing all karts are fitted with transponders allowing your lap times to be recorded. At the end of your session you will be issued with your print out, giving a breakdown of all the lap times and your average speed, which is great for comparing against other drivers. A leader board is present containing all of the fastest drivers, including the best lap times and the date and weather conditions on that particular day. Archery is also available at Castlefin.
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