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Where To Visit In The Northwest Of Ireland

Updated on August 21, 2017
Thelma Alberts profile image

Thelma has lived and worked for almost three years in the Republic of Ireland as a spa wellness massage therapist.

Slieve League, County Donegal
Slieve League, County Donegal | Source

Harness Cottage, Co. Sligo

At last we arrived at our destination at Harness Cottage, Ballinfull, County Sligo. We were so tired because we had a long way from Germany to Ireland. All in all, we were 850,6 km on the road with a few hindrances by taking the wrong way to the northwest of Ireland.

Our cottage was very cute. It had a cosy living room with an open fireplace, a kitchen, a bathroom and a big bedroom. I think it was a stable before it was renovated and turned to cottage. It was behind the head house. All around was an orchard and there was a path in going to the beach. A few miles away was a big popular house which was mentioned in one of William Butler Yeats poems. I can´t remember the name at the moment.

Counties Donegal and Sligo

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Co. DonegalAtlantic Ocean, Co. DonegalSlieve League, Co. DonegalSlieve League, Co. DonegalBeach near Ben Bulben, Co. SligoSomewhere in Co. SligoBeach in Co. Sligo Beach in Co.Sligo Beach in Co. Sligo
Co. Donegal
Co. Donegal | Source
Atlantic Ocean, Co. Donegal
Atlantic Ocean, Co. Donegal | Source
Slieve League, Co. Donegal
Slieve League, Co. Donegal | Source
Slieve League, Co. Donegal
Slieve League, Co. Donegal | Source
Beach near Ben Bulben, Co. Sligo
Beach near Ben Bulben, Co. Sligo | Source
Somewhere in Co. Sligo
Somewhere in Co. Sligo | Source
Beach in Co. Sligo
Beach in Co. Sligo | Source
 Beach in Co.Sligo
Beach in Co.Sligo | Source
Beach in Co. Sligo
Beach in Co. Sligo | Source

Where To Visit

In the counties of Donegal and Sligo, you can see a lot of beautiful landscapes, mountains, white sandy beaches, rivers, lakes, cliffs and ruins of prehistoric cemetery. Here are some places you should see when you are in the northwest of Ireland.

In Co. Donegal :

1. Killybegs

Killybegs is a small fishers port. Fish is sold everyday on the market. You can pass this place in going to Slieve League.

2. Slieve League

Europes´ highest cliff which is 600 meter above the sea level. It is said that on a clear day on the tip of the cliff, you can see 2/3 of Ireland. The place where Slieve League is located is very awesome but amazing. Amazing for I have not seen such beauty in my life. Imagine,I have to walk up high on a narrow path and down left was the deep ocean and on the right side of the path is a mountain. Arriving on the highest place for me to climb, was a small lake.

You have to be good by foot and have the right shoes to wear for you have to climb to see the beauty that God created for us. You need to be in good condition for it´ s too high to climb (at least for me). There were lots of tourists when we were there but there was no toilet. The tourists (included me) have to look for a place to hide for relieving themselves. There were garbage thrown on the other side of the cliff.

3. Ardara

Ardara is a small place with it´s amazing beauty and is popular for it´s Donegal Tweeds. Donegal Tweeds are still made with the old techniques of weaving. These handicrafts are being sold in many handicraft shops. You can buy these products in different style and color.

4. Donegal Castle

Donegal Castle was built in the 15th Century and was the seat where the O´Donnell`s Chieftain exercised his power as the chief of Gaelic families in Donegal. It is located at the centre of the town and has undergone several Restorations until it was open for the public. It shows how the O'Donnell's lived with it´s antiques furniture.

Donegal Castle is only a walking distance to the city with a tourist office, shops and pubs. The city has it´s own characteristics and beauty. When I was there with my husband after visiting Slieve League, we had to find a loo but it was not open. So my hubby had to asked the police and like all Irish that we met, friendly, he brought my hubby to his place to use his own toilet.

In Co. Sligo:

1. Drumcliff

For those who are interested in literature, William Butler Yeats grave is located at the cemetery of Drumcliff. It´s near the church and around this church are trees where there were a lot of crows sitting on the branches.

2. Sligo Bay

3. Sligo Abbey

Sligo Abbey is located in the town center and was built in the middle of 13th Century. There´s an entrance fee when you go inside. It has it´s own visitor centre and you can have a guided tour if you want to. Sligo Abbey has a weird impression for me for there are lots of old graves in and around the Abbey.

4. St. John´s Cathedral

St. John´s Cathedral The Baptist was built in the 18th Century and is also located in the town centre. Like any other church or cathedral in , there are graves in and around the place. The ancestors of the playwriter Wiliam Yeats and his artist brother Jack Yeats were buried here.

5. Yeats Memorial Building

Was built by Yeats grandfather and he stayed there for a long time as an author.

6. Sligo County Museum

In Sligo County Museum, you can see the works of arts and paintings of Jack Yeats and of all local artists.

7. Lough Gill

Lough Gill is a large lake in Co. Sligo where you can go fishing for brown trout and salmon. It is a beautiful lake where my hubby and I took a rest for our sightseeing tour.

8. Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery

Is the second biggest cemetery in Europe where Queen Maeve, the mythical Queen of Celtic Ireland, was buried. There are remnants of more than 4,000 years of graves made of huge stones.

9. Benbulben

Benbulben is an astonishing beautiful 527 high rock mountain in Yeats Country. Wiliam Butler Yeats was buried at the foot of Benbulben, in Drumcliff.

10. Strandhill and Rosses Point

Strandhill and Rosses Point are small places in Co. Sligo with each lovely white sandy beaches. It was the beaches where I loved walking around.

A Lake at Slieve League, Co.Donegal
A Lake at Slieve League, Co.Donegal | Source

Ireland Travel Guide

This book is a must-have when traveling to Ireland. It helps a lot to find places, restaurants, tourists spots and information about the green island.

William Butler Yeats Grave in Drumcliff
William Butler Yeats Grave in Drumcliff | Source

William Butler Yeats

A book of the writings of William Butler Yeats. If you are an avid fan of this writer, this is a book for you. I have read this one in the library years ago and it was very interesting.

Slieve League, Co. Donegal
Slieve League, Co. Donegal | Source


Our holidays in County Donegal and County Sligo were only 1 week in the year 2004. The rest 3 weeks were spent in Co.Mayo, Co. Galway and down to the south of Ireland. It was all 4 weeks holiday with lots of good impressions that influenced our next future years. It was a good influence, happy weeks that was spent in the awesome and beautiful country.

Republic of Ireland

Slieve League, County Donegal:
Slieve League, Creenveen, Co. Donegal, Ireland

get directions

Killybegs, County Donegal:
Killybegs, Co. Donegal, Ireland

get directions

Donegal Castle, County Donegal:
Donegal, Co. Donegal, Ireland

get directions

Drumcliff, County Sligo:
Drumcliff, Co. Sligo, Ireland

get directions

St. John's Cathedral, County Sligo:
St John's Cathedral, John St, Sligo Town, Co. Sligo, Ireland

get directions

Benbulben, County Sligo:
Ben Bulben, Ardnaglass Lower, Co. Sligo, Ireland

get directions

Lough Gill, County Sligo:
Lough Gill, Ireland

get directions

Sligo Abbey, County Sligo:
Abbey Street Upper, Sligo, Co. Sligo, Ireland

get directions

William Butler Yeats Reading Voice

Video of Slieve League

© 2011 Thelma Alberts


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    • Thelma Alberts profile imageAUTHOR

      Thelma Alberts 

      8 years ago from Germany

      That´s great Billy. Visiting your relatives in Sligo is an opportunity to see the beautiful Emerald Country (as what Ireland is sometimes called). I´m sure you will like it there. Just go there in summer.

      Thanks for dropping by and yes, I have a fabulous weekend researching online and planning for my next adventurous travel in the countrysides of my home country before flying back to my adopted country;-)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      8 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I actually have distant relatives who live in odd that I read this hub. Some day I would love to visit there. Thanks for the suggestions and I hope you have a fabulous weekend.

    • Thelma Alberts profile imageAUTHOR

      Thelma Alberts 

      8 years ago from Germany

      Yes, it was a beautiful place to visit. There´s no harm in dreaming. I´ll cross my finger too, for any chance you have to visit this place and some other places you want to visit. Thanks unknown spy for your follow.

    • unknown spy profile image

      Life Under Construction 

      8 years ago from Neverland

      Wow!! What an interesting hub and a beautiful place. I guess, its only a dream to visit this great place but keeping my fingers crossed for oppurtunities!

    • Thelma Alberts profile imageAUTHOR

      Thelma Alberts 

      8 years ago from Germany

      Hi Jimmys Money blog! Sorry to have forgoten this comment. I thought I have answered after I read it. Anyway, thank you. In a way, I´m promoting Donegal and other places in Ireland through writing about these beautiful places. Slieve League is one of the awesome places in Ireland that I have visited. You are lucky to be living there. Thanks for your comment. I appreciate that.

    • Jimmys Money blog profile image


      8 years ago

      Excellent hub Thelma. I promote a townland in Donegal and have to admit the North West of Ireland is stunning. I would encourage anyone to make visit to this place. Keep up the good work,Jimmy.

    • Thelma Alberts profile imageAUTHOR

      Thelma Alberts 

      10 years ago from Germany

      Hello Maita! Thank you for stopping by. I´m sure there are lots of hubbers in HP from Ireland but have not found them yet. I will of course. You know, I think I have seen more beautiful places of Ireland than in the Philippines. It´s time for me to know my own country that´s why I´m glad that there are many Filipina/o hubbers here.

    • prettydarkhorse profile image


      10 years ago from US

      Hi Thelma, Nice tour again, I have never been to Ireland, in some parts of Europe, yes. there are lots of hubbers here from Ireland. It is beautiful! Maita


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