5 OF THE PRETTIEST VILLAGES IN IRELAND YOU NEED TO VISIT
Ireland’s towns and cities are all strikingly pretty, including the two major capitals, Dublin and Belfast. But bigger doesn’t mean better – so don’t skip the tiny villages on your next Irish vacation. These villages may be small in size, but they’re big in beauty. Here are the top 5 postcard-perfect villages to add to your itinerary.
1. KINVARA, CO GALWAY
A gorgeous seaport village located right on Galway Bay, with The Burren on its doorstep. Kinvara offers the most charming ocean views and streets filled with colorful stone buildings. It is home to the iconic Dunguaire Castle (which looks spectacular at sunset), and the small harbor is often lined with traditional sailing and fishing boats. This is a charming spot for a leisurely walk, and is less than 50 minutes from Galway City.
Nearby castle stay: Lough Cutra Castle
2. ROSSES POINT, CO SLIGO
Both a village and a peninsula, Rosses Point is a popular tourist destination. Home to resident writer, William Butler Yeats, the area has strong literary links. And today, it’s famous for being one of the top angling spots in Ireland. It’s petite in nature, but features a long stretch of beach for long walks or sunbathing the summer. You’ll get great views of Coney Island and Oyster Island from the peninsula, and some landmarks to see include the Metal Man lighthouse and the ‘Waiting on Shore’ sculpture.
3. CONG, CO MAYO
The island village of Cong is intertwined with a network of waterways, with a convergence of rivers and fantastic boat trips for groups, families or couples. Enjoy the spectacular sight of Ashford Castle and Lisloughrey Pier, Cong Abbey, and the nearby historic island of Inchagoill. You’ll also find some lovely little dining spots and traditional pubs. Some popular places to enjoy a drink or a bite to eat include Pat Cohan Bar, John J. Burke’s Bar & Restaurant, and Ryan’s Hotel. Famously, the town has also been a shooting location for John Ford’s 1952 Oscar-winning movie, The Quiet Man.
Nearby boutique stay: Ashford Castle Hotel
4. KENMARE, CO KERRY
Kenmare on the Ring of Kerry is one of the most beautiful parts of Ireland, and the ideal base for a vacation in Ireland. Nestled in the foothills of the Kerry Mountains and facing out onto Kenmare Bay, it’s perfectly place for proximity to the coast and other attractions. The main street is a colorful collection of buildings, each painted differently, and the village comes to life at night with its lively Irish music scene. Foodies will also be delighted to know that despite its modest size, Kenmare is known as Co Kerry’s culinary capital.
Nearby mansion stay: Churchtown House
5. ADARE, CO LIMERICK
One of Ireland’s prettiest village for sure, according to locals, visitors and multiple publications. Adare has long had its admirers and is a picture perfect vacation spot with manicured gardens, thatched cottages, and cozy cafes. It even has two well-known ruin sites located inside a 900 hectare parkland. The Inn Between is the village’s most popular pub, and there’s also a championship golf course, a luxury spa, and an excellent equestrian center.
Nearby boutique stay: Adare Manor