Here are our tips for things to do in County Donegal, the northernmost county in Ireland.Â Which might not sound all that interesting until you realize that parts of Co. Donegal are actually north of Northern Ireland. Aside from just a small strip of border touching Co. Leitrim, youâ€™ll technically have to go through the United Kingdom to get there.
Donegal Coast by mjmkeating
Podcast on things to do in Donegal
Trace your roots at the Glencolmcille Folk Village Museum
Because of the many eras of emigration from Ireland, many people return to explore their Irish roots. The Glencolmcille Folk Village Museum is a great place to get a window into the world that so many left behind while also exploring the world that has shaped current day Ireland.
Picture courtesy of sludgegulper
Travel back to the Iron Age at Griana an Aileach
Stay at the town of Burt and visit the nearby Iron Age ring fort, Grianan an Aileach. Sitting atop a hill, the fort looks out over Co. Donegal and offers views that are hard to beat. The area was most likely once a seat of power and culture in ancient Ireland. Today, it is one of those ancient ruins that just shouldnâ€™t be missed.
Grianan an Aileach by Steve Cadham
Visit Donegal Castle
Take a guided tour at the 15th century Donegal Castle in Donegal Town. There is a small fee to visit the castle, but the castle has been nearly completely restored and is well worth the entrance fee.
Learn to speak Irish
Learn Irish at the Oideas Gael Language camp. For over 25 years, the camp has been offering education in both the Irish language as well as Irish culture for adults. While the course does not necessarily come cheap, it offers a unique opportunity to learn the Irish language in one of Irelandâ€™s most beautiful landscapes.
Spectate at the Donegal Car Rally
Enjoy (from a safe distance) the Donegal International Car Rally.Â On the third weekend of June, the three day event brings rally fans from around the world to the competition. The course winds through breathtaking scenery and offers world class racing.
Picture courtesy of leppre
Explore the region on foot or bike
People from around Ireland and Europe flock to Co. Donegal for the nature. With good reason. So go for a walk or go cycling. Anywhere. The countryside is beautiful so get out there and explore.Â You can head off on your own, either having rented a bike or by foot, but be sure to head out there.
Go swimming or surfing
Boasting some of the most beautiful beaches in Ireland, Co. Donegal has plenty of white sandy beaches to choose from. Bundoran is a great place to enjoy the sea as well as get a little surfing in.
Not only can you go swimming, but you can even go diving.Â Mevagh Diving Center offers dives for all experience levels as well as dives to various wrecks and plenty of scenic dives. They are a PADI 5 Star certified dive center and the only dive center in Co. Donegal.Â Theyâ€™ll even take you diving every single day of the year.Â Although, unless youâ€™re braver than me, diving in December, that far north is better left to others.
Explore Glenveagh National Park
GlenveaghÂ National Park offers guided walks with park rangers throughout the year, although booking is essential. The lakes, forests, and mountainous areas offers a beautiful countryside and the park prides itself on its ongoing efforts to reintroduce the Golden Eagle which was classified as extinct in the area in 1912.
Admire the views from Slieve League
And finally, go to the Slieve League. The sea cliffs are actually much higher than the Cliffs of Moher in Co. Clare and due to the lack of notoriety youâ€™ll find fewer people swarming the cliffs.Â As always though, be safe!
Find the best deals on hotels in Donegal
Click here for great deals on Donegal hotels on the HotelsCombined price comparison site.