The Western Region
It’s time for a spot of boasting.
It’s time for chunks of unseen Ireland to stand up, be heard and make their way into your holiday plans. It’s time for you to meet Ireland’s Western Region.
Make your way towards the west/northwest of Ireland you’ll meet County Roscommon, home to castle curiosities and epic angling. You’ll meet Mayo with its saintly mountains and golfing glories. A little inland and you’ll fall in love with Leitrim, blessed with gorgeous glens, lush lakelands and a certain waterfall...
Pop over to Donegal on the northwest coast where views are on the dramatic side and Good Food Taverns are tasty treats. South then, and surfers will love Sligo’s seaside and poets can follow the life of W.B Yeats all the way to Benbulben Mountain.
So, in the Western Region, do it different...
Land that salmon on the Shannon that’s so big the camera man had trouble getting it into shot, or stand on the edge of Ireland, and what seems like the world, at Donegal’s Slieve League Cliffs.
Island living never looked as good as it did on Achill Island where Keem Beach is as beautiful to behold as it is hard to leave and Ireland’s cultural story opens up in Leitrim’s Glenview Folk Museum.
And the best news? This is only the very fine tip of a very memorable iceberg, because The Western Region is, in a very gentle way, bulging at the seams with places, people, pubs and parties.
Great Western Region Offers
- Delphi Mountain Resort Nordic Special From €225-€245pps
- Activity holidays in Donegal €350 per week
- Discover Achill Island's Free Bike Midweek Experience €79pps
- Discover The Lough Erne Canoe Trail from £50
- Cycling Activity Break at the Mill Times Hotel, Westport, County Mayo €109.00 pps
- Last Minute Break at the Ice House Hotel, Co. Mayo €130.00 pps
- Golf Play and Stay at the Mill Times Hotel Westport, County Mayo €65.00 pps
- Take a walk on the wild side €750 per person
- 20% off at Europe's Largest Karting Centre from €15.00
- Midweek Golfing Experience €150.00 pps
- Get active in Inishowen! €75
- A Taste of Westport €258
- Cream Tea and Belleek Midweek Escape £89
- Sligo: by Bike 'n' B&B €70
- Moderate Walking Safari, 6 Day Guided, 3* Hotel €523
- Experience Island Life with Traditional Culture & Crafts Festival €195.00
- Where the Shannon meets Lough Derg €140.00 per couple
- Discount for Connacht Rugby Fans €15
- Magic 3 Rathmullan House, County Donegal €225
- The Gathering - Cultural & Heritage Break €298
With all that Atlantic Ocean, all those beaches and all those cliff-curving roads Ireland's Western Region is a driving delight. From Donegal’s Atlantic Drive and that beach-loving Inishowen 100 to driving right into the shadow of Sligo’s Benbulben mountain and following the Shannon lazily through Roscommon and Leitrim – the Western Region host slices of driving heaven. And we haven’t even touched on that short-spin beauty to Erris Head in Mayo. Beauty and choice – it’s tough not to love the Western Region.
It’s a shock – but the Atlantic Ocean isn’t the only water show in town here in the Western Region. Fact is, the place is nicely laced with rivers and speckled with some lovely little and large lakes. Anglers will be ‘gone fishin’ for quite a while when they hit the lazy length of the Shannon or Lough Conn and the myriad loughs with their fishy bounty. Boating trips abound, too, around the islands of Leitrim’s legendary Lough Mask or up the Garrovogue River and swish around the glass-like waters of Lough Gill. Imagine – all that craic on the water and you don’t even have to get wet!
Golfing in Ireland has been on the tips of tongues as of late thanks to the recent record-breaking success of a certain Northern Irishman. But as well as producing great golfers – we’ve also whittled some of the most distinct links golf courses in the world (ok, yes, we got some help from the rugged Atlantic coastline). It is easy to understand why the Western Region of Ireland have emerged as popular golfing destinations. Both amateurs and golf purists are smitten with the natural terrain which can be a challenge to play and a marvel to behold.
Living on an island means that fresh-from-the-sea seafood is never too far away. And in being blessed with such a fortunate bounty we’ve spent centuries mastering how best to prepare a steaming pot of mussels or succulent crab claws – and boy does it show! You may also know about our rich and enduring history of farming that’s admired in far flung corners of the world for producing some seriously succulent snacks. And what makes all this gorgeous food taste even better are those snug, chic, sumptuous and affordable eateries where it’s served. Guess what we’re trying to say is that breakfast/lunch/dinner here in Ireland comes with a generous side serving of atmosphere.
Some say the Irish coined the phrase The Great Outdoors, simply because our outdoors are so very, well, great. And the Western Region of Ireland is where we keep our most epic landscapes. From the top of the mighty Croagh Patrick down to the sweeping Glens of County Leitrim the beauty of the West is only outdone by its natural diversity. Think along the lines of tranquil National Parks, ancient ruin-strewn hilltops, lakes, rivers and a certain Atlantic Ocean. Plus, it doesn’t matter if you see it on the back of a bike or on your own two feet – your heart will still miss a beat.
The past is very much a part of the present in the Western Region of Ireland. Out amongst the landscape are scattered ruins, ring-forts, cairns and castles, each a testament to our ambitious ancestors. But where do you get the inside track on how it all happened? Where do you source the backstory? That would be our heritage centres and museums – they’re (not literally now) bursting with knowledge and ‘Did you know?’. The castles which adorn the landscape speak of battles past and the great houses of the West still offer the best in luxury and taste. So as you can see, we’re mighty proud of our history and heritage – pop over and see why.
Ok, it’s true. There will be one problem when you arrive in Ireland's Western Region – there may be too many cool cultural curiosities grabbing for your attention. Interested in the Irish language? The Gaeltacht areas in Donegal and Mayo are where you’ll hear the lyrical loveliness. And the chances are the reason you’re here is because that CD of Irish pub songs gave you the idea to find your very own traditional music session. Then again, you can slip right into Ireland’s story at one of the many folk museums (Flight of the Earls sound like an exciting story? Believe us, it is). Yes indeed, a cultural journey into the West and Northwest is a bit of an odyssey – but it’s a fun one!
Thanks to being knitted together with possibly the most rugged stretch of the Atlantic Ocean, the Western Region gets special when it gets to the sea. Think island escapes populated by fluent Irish speakers, pubs where whining TVs are banned and slices of beach so pretty you’ll have trouble picking your jaw off the floor. Oh, and did we mention that the counties of Sligo and Donegal happen to host some of Europe’s most tubular waves? Well, they do and they have plenty of comps and parties to celebrate the surf. The sea is always pretty, but in Ireland’s West and Northwest it’s more than that.
It might be rugged, it might have that isolated charm but the Western Region remains wonderfully accessible. Mayo’s Ireland West Airport at Knock welcomes charter flights from over 20 destinations across Europe and the UK while Shannon, just a skip south is generously served by US destinations. If you’re busy visiting Dublin city in the east, than the train is your man and with a wide network of busses running along spanking new super slick highways, you’re only a matter of hours from the Western Region. Then, of course, you could also rent your very own chariot from whatever city or airport you’re arriving into and see the region from behind the wheel with your favourite tunes on and all that unique scenery providing the kind of backdrop you’re used to seeing in big-budget Hollywood movies.