Explore The West of Ireland

Self Catering Accommodation by County in the West of Ireland: ClareGalwayMayo & Roscommon.

Clare

Co Clare is ideal for those who relish in historical relics, prehistoric tombs and unique landscapes. Most noted for The Burren, a limestone rock landscape that stretches South of Galway Bay along the Western coast of Ireland, and the world renouned Cliffs of Moher.  This famous tourist destination is a five-mile line of cliffs stretching down the coast marked by the vantage point of O’Brien’s Tower.  Co Clare draws travelers to marvel at the rich history and rustic charm of villages like Doolin, Kilkee and Lahinch, perfect holiday home locations.  Here travelers have the opportunity to experience what life was like in Ireland many years ago.  Complete with thatched cottages, small stonewalls and narrow winding laneways, these small quaint villages are a must see for every visitor.  Located on the West coast of Ireland, Clare's boundaries are defined by water -- the Atlantic to the West, Lough Derg along the North East and the River Shannon to the South and East.  The population of 110,000 speaks mainly English, and their reputation for good Irish music and warm hospitality entices travelers to relax and stay awhile.

Visitors renting holiday homes in Clare are tempted from their cosy rooms by the lure of forest trails, golf courses, regional festivals and the chance to see great Irish music and dancing.  Historic attractions like the Bunratty Castle built by Thomas de Clare and the megalithic portal tomb at the Burren enchant and mystify curious travelers.  Fishermen can try their hand at angling on the twenty species of fish in the surrounding lakes, or take off on deep sea fishing tours for bigger game like shark.  After all the excitement of exploring, hungry travelers are delighted to find their dining choices range from quaint Irish pubs to elegant five star restaurants.  These establishments serve satisfying plates of local cuisines and are accompanied by hearty beers and smoky liquors that have made Irish distilleries famous around the world.

Clare is a splendid place to take families and guests for memorable holidays.  Staying in local residences gives visitors a chance to get in the spirit and join in the ‘craic’.  Along with traditional activities like the Lighting Ceremony in November, be sure and check for the more obscure regional celebrations like the ancient Celtic festivals that shaped our current holiday celebrations.

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Galway

Galway County sits along the West coast of Ireland at the mouth of the River Corrib, and contains one of Europe's fastest-growing cities, Galway City. County Galway is the second largest county in Ireland behind County Cork, with nearly 6,000 square kilometers in area, and 132,000 inhabitants.  Holiday homes in Galway are becoming more and more popular because of preservation of old world Irish charm, folk tradition, and stunning scenic beauty, including the storied Aran Islands.  The area of South Connemara occupied by Galway County combines the excitement of an urban hotspot with the authenticity of "Gaeltachta," a place which has always kept Irish as its first language, and its cultural history alive and well.

There are plenty of events and activities to occupy you during your time in Galway County.  Renting a Galway holiday home is highly advantageous, as you can experience everything from the cultural artifacts of the areas history at the Galway City Museum, stroll the beaches and highlands, or get off the beaten path and try your hand at falconry at Ashford Castle.  Take the "Galway on Foot Tour," which gives an excellent insider's view of the city and history of Galway.  The mysterious allure and beauty of the Aran Islands includes ancient monuments, as well as a unique, serene getaway from the cities.  There are also plenty of festivals such as the Galway Races at Ballybrit, the Guinness Oyster Festival, Cuirt International Festival of Literature and Clifden Traditional Music Festival.  Galway city has boisterous pubs filled with live music, restaurants, a traditional shopping experience, and above all--the spirited friendly people, who make visiting Galway a real joy.

There's no shortage of charming holiday cottages in Galway County.  Many holiday homes are within a 30-minute drive of Galway City and its environs, but there are hidden hideaways further afield for those seeking more rustic retreats--a large number of self catering holiday homes are located along or near the coastline.  Rent a holiday home in Galway County and experience the very best Ireland has to offer!

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Roscommon

Roscommon County is the eleventh largest county of Ireland’s thirty-two counties and is located within the province of Connaught.  Roscommon County is 2,452 square kilometers in size and encompasses towns such as Boyle, Elphin, Strokestown, and others.  The population of Roscommon County is over 51,000 people and the economy of the area is powered by the agricultural industry.  The name Roscommon comes from a combination of “Ros” meaning gentle terrain with trees and “Conman” who was a famous Irish saint. Roscommon is truly an appropriate name for the area because it has beautiful terrain with trees including a preserved forest.

While in Roscommon, there are plenty of attractions to visit.  Boyle Abbey is one of the most popular attractions.  For history lovers Strokestown Park House Famine Museum offers insight into the lives of Irish who suffered through the potato famine of the 1840s.  The ruins of Roscommon Castle will offer visitors a glimpse into the past.  A working 18th century windmill can be found at Elphin Windmill.  The Arigna Mining Experience offers an outdoor activity centre for the entire family.  The county library offers various art exhibitions throughout the year while water sports, fishing and boating are a few outdoor sports that many visitors enjoy.  The Lough Key Forest Park is a preserved forestland brimming with wildlife, lakes and woodlands.

A holiday home in Roscommon County can provide you with a lovely place to stay while you visit the area’s attractions and explore the quiet country lanes.  You may find your time in Roscommon to be so enjoyable that you stay there.  After all, Roscommon County’s residents have the longest life expectancy in all of Ireland!

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Mayo

When you're looking to buy or rent a holiday home in Mayo there are many quaint villages to choose from such as Westport, Castlebar Ballinrobe and Achill Island.  County Mayo is located on the West Coast of Ireland, adjacent to places such as Sligo, Roscommon and Galway.  County Mayo is quite scenic, and contains hills and lakes, along with the breathtaking coastline.  The largest island off the Irish coast, Achill Island, is part of County Mayo.  There are also renowned fishing destinations in Mayo. Due to particularly high levels of emigration out of the area, Mayo lost nearly half its population between the time of the potato famine from 1840s to 1901.  1971 saw an all time low population of 109,525, though people have gradually been lured back due to Mayo's uncommon beauty and leisure activities, friendly people, folk music traditions and lively pubs.

There is much to do in County Mayo, in the way of leisure activities, cultural experiences, and becoming familiar with the people and natural life of the area.  The aforementioned world-class fishing is a major draw, with places along the River Moy long known as "an angler's paradise".  There are many golf courses, cycling, spas and leisure centers, and even surfing available for recreation and relaxation in County Mayo.  Unique attractions include Croagh Patrick, Ireland’s holy mountain with the National Famine Memorial at its foot; Knock Shrine, scene of a miraculous apparition in 1879 and Foxford Woolen Mills.  There are many abbeys and priories to visit, for a historical glimpse of the West of Ireland such as Ballintubber Abbey.  There are also several annual festivals that take place in Mayo, celebrating the folk traditions, arts and heritage of the Irish people.

County Mayo holiday home rental is highly popular among travelers, and growing in prominence, due to the area's unspoilt scenic beauty and active folk traditions and celebrations.  The area offers unique opportunities for outdoor living.  And when you've tired after a day of breathtaking scenic drives along the coast, hiking, beach combing or golfing, visitors to the area can settle into one of the many pubs for after hours fun, sampling the local ales, hospitality, music and food!

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