What To Do

THINGS TO DO IN DONEGAL, IRELAND

donegal walking holiday
Walking is obviously a great pleasure in Donegal where the unspoilt scenery and dramatic views of rocky shores, high mountains, and waymarked paths make it possible to explore deep into the natural habitats of many of our birds and animals. Of course you can cross the mountains on foot, mountain treks are popular but go prepared for all weathers! Hire horses for a gallop across the sands, go wild camping and bathe in the rock pools on the coast. A trip to Giant's causeway from Donegal is a must for many holiday visitors to Donegal.  

There are facilities for sight seeing, cruising, trips for sea angling are increasing and cruise ships often stop over at Killybegs where the huge ship full of holidaymakers dominates the view when it's docked. And at the Donegal International Rally, the splendid tarmac racecourse has views of many scenic spots.  

On Donegal holidays you can find include guided walks to the mountains, seaside cliffs, are available with beautiful views whilst hill walking along the walk ways in the mountains, try Glen Veagh National park where golden eagle pairs are breeding in mountains nearby, the Glendown Mountains, Blue Stack Mountains or Derryveagh where there will be no shortage of romantic and awe inspiring views (but this being Ireland, you'll know to box clever and take your waterproofs, just in case!). 

Along the coast there are 601m high sea cliffs walks to enjoy and the rocky coast and clean beaches. Indeed, Donegal is also home to many surfing enthusiasts with surf schools and expert tuition available on the Atlantic waves. The beaches in Donegal are stunning and they are among the top 3 counties in Ireland for Blue Flag standards of cleanliness!  Donegal's Atlantic coastline is a surfing magnet for major European and world ranking events. 

Donegal is well known as the Festival Capital of the North West with Donegal Live in 2012 being a great success.  The Irish people know how to have a good 'Craic' and are happy to welcome visitors to their 'Gatherings'!  A local festival is a great place to meet local people, have a great time and hear both traditional and international music.  Irish Céilí festivals and special events are going on all the time with many themes such as comedy, arts, Irish, or even European.

Lough Eske Castle is a popular venue with many rich and famous celebrity marriages and parties taking place there.  Situated on shores of loch Eske you can live like the nobility having a pampered weekend here in splendidly furnished and Medieval inspired bedrooms; look out on the stunning fountain with leaping dolphin sculpture in front of the beautifully preserved castle where you can hook a salmon in the Loch (true to its name, Loch Eske means 'the lake abounding in fish'!) and enjoy the best fresh food and fine wines.

FISHING IN DONEGAL

You can hire a fishing boat at the lakeside, and there has been an increase in angling centres who provide holiday visitors to Donegal with a licence and permission to fish.  You can catch salmon, sea trout,  pike on the fly and further out to sea there are blue shark, porbeagle shark.  You'll also glimpse huge basking sharks making their lazy progress around the coast, and even, since 2005, a pod of up to 10 killer whales have been popping by for a swim off the coast of Donegal and have been filmed in Lough Swilly several times in recent years.

GOLFING HOLIDAYS IN DONEGAL

For lovers of Golf, Donegal is blessed with 18 golf courses of 9 and 18 holes links courses praised by the likes of Rory Mackelroy and Nick Faldo for their challenging holes and fabulous views.  And Holidays in Donegal are often first choice for anglers and country pursuits enthusiasts.  

If you are holidaying with children in Donegal you'll find plenty of children's activities, sandy beaches for them to enjoy, countryside activities and the Waterworld at Dundoran.  A great family time can be had at 10 pin bowling, and there's a narrow gauge railway taking you up to the mountains.   Adult entertainment of course in pubs and clubs, and of course this is Ireland so here is horse racing or greyhoud racing to try your luck.

WILD CAMPING IN DONEGAL

donegal holiday sheepWild Camping in Donegal is a joy for tent enthusiasts although some of the roads and passing places are a little narrow for large campervans, i.e. at Benone Beach and Kinnego Bay nr Greencastle.  So why not take your small/medium sized tent and - taking care to be leaving no trace behind you – spend overnight at beaches and lochs on your Donegal holiday, pop into the local hostelries for hot food and a bit of local 'Craic'.   At Mcswinnes gun loop you might see working blowholes , and at Melmore Head, walk to Murder Hole Beach and camp in the big cave (but not at high tide, and don’t swim)!  

It's a surfer's delight at Trammore Strand Dunfanaghy, with a fabulous walk and beach.Explore rocky coasts that are well nigh deserted by people and Falmore, Dungloe where there is a huge natural rock pool.  You and your family can swim and see the small fish and crabs, endless fun and safe snorkelling and paddling or even a blow up boat is safe because the pool is protected by the rocks except for when it is refreshed at high tide.

And don't forget to come and watch the Gaelic Games!

Glenveagh National Park

Glenveagh National Park is one of six national parks in Ireland. Situated in the Northwest of Co. Donegal, Glenveagh encompasses some 16,000 hectares in the heart of the Derryveagh Mountains.

Donegal Castle

Built by the O'Donnell chieftain in the 15th century, beside the River Eske, the Castle has extensive 17th century additions by Sir Basil Brooke. The Castle is furnished throughout and includes Persian rugs and French tapestries.

Donegal Golf Club

Situated on the Murvagh peninsula in Donegal Bay, this links course is isolated from the outside world by a forest of evergreens on one side, and the distant Bluestack Mountains on the other.