Northbound Day Trip Donegal
Turn right from the River House to the mini roundabout. Turn right to main street and then right on Main street. Follow the Coast road out (Mill road)
On your right will be the Waterfront Hotel.
The next stop is Burtonport. Here you can visit the Welcome Centre, take the Ferry to Arranmore (they will give you 10% off if you mention staying at The River House). You can also start the Old Railway Walk here. We have maps and so does the Welcome Centre. You can also go out with Jim Muldowney on his boat the Elsie Jayne for diving or sea safaris (booking required).
If you take the ferry to Arranmore we recommend you hike the Slí Arainn Mhor (Arranmore Loop Walk) which is part of the Bealachta na Gaeltachta Waymarked Way and begins and ends at the Ferry Port. The views in all directions along the walk are stunning and the western half of the route is particularly remote. There are loads of opportunities for Bird Watching along the cliffs, the famous Arranmore Lighthouse, the Old Mill & Courthouse and the historical ’Cave of Slaughter’.
Travel along the Coast Road through Keadue - there are several beaches along here including Keadue Strand and Cloughlas as well as many little coves with amazing turquoise waters and unmarked sands, all pristine and peaceful.
Continue on your journey to Cruit Island. There is a 9 hole golf course here as well as fabulous views and a small beach. Next village is Kincasslagh. Home of Daniel O’Donnell. (You can go on a a boat here for fishing and sight seeing with Paul on the Saoire Mara (booking required).
Just past Mullaghduff (home to the world class Buíonn Ceoil Mullachdubh founded in 1881, the "Old Band" and the "Wee band". Mullaghduff is also home to Celtics first sod of turf, which was cut in April 1995 and placed in Celtic Park. In June 1995 a small plaque which is along the road was unveiled by Celtic Captain Paul McStay) you will loop around and at this point and go to Carrickfinn, home of our airport, just voted the second most scenic airport in the world. There are two beaches here, including a spectacular sand dune perfect for small and big kids to roll down!! Great beach for kite flying, walking or swimming.
At this point you should take the route to Dunfanaghy.
You must decide now whether to continue to Dunfanaghy and Sheephaven Bay. Dunfanaghy is home to many of our local artists. There are several studios where you can see their work and buy, if so inclined!
Doagh Famine Village is highly recommended as a visit to understand the reason for the large exodus from Ireland during the famine. As in many parts of Ireland in the mid nineteenth century, a Workhouse was constructed nearby for the detention and maintenance of destitute local people. The first occupants were admitted in June 1845 at the beginning of the Great Famine. Near the workhouse, on the Falcarragh road, is the former Union fever hospital. It is now used as an artists studio and gallery.
For the hikers and photographers Horn Head is located in this area. Well worth the hike out to the end to feel like you are standing on the edge of the world. Horn Head is magnificent, an almost two-hundred-metre rock face scored by ledges on which perch countless guillemots and gulls and small numbers of puffins. The best view of the cliffs, sea-stacks and caves is from the water, but the cliff road is vertiginous enough in places to give you a good look down the sheer sides. To get here take the slip road at the western end of DUNFANAGHY village; it descends to skirt the side of a beautiful inlet before rising steeply to go round the east side of the head.
Ards Friary is also in the vicinity. A wonderful peaceful area surrounded by forest and a walk by the lake to contemplate, is always recommended. There is a cafe in the friary for a cup of tea and cake.
Stops on the journey should include Killahoey Strand. Portnablagh and Marble Beach. You can also access Muckish Mountain and Doe Castle.
Alternatively at the sign for Glenveagh National Park turn right. You will be blown away by the sight of Errigal mountain close up. The views of the lake along here are stunning and there are viewing points to take loads of photos. Parking for climbing Errigal is along here. Further along you will come to the poisoned Glen, Dunlewey Centre (great for kids) and the entrance to the National Park. Parking is free. There is a large Information Centre, Hiking Trails, Glorious Gardens, Glenveagh Castle and views so beautiful you can not capture them adequately with a camera!