An Spidéal – Moycullen – Oughterard – Maam Cross – Maum – Leenane – Letterfrack – Clifden – Reccess – Maam Cross – Screeb – Casla – Indreabhán – An Spidéal.
This is a great tour as there is no right or wrong way to do it and there is very little back tracking on it! The tour can easily be done in reverse. (However, I prefer the view of Galway Bay and the Burren on the way down from Maam Cross to Casla than Moycullen to Spiddal.) With this tour there are four add-ons I would recommend doing if time permits.
Innagh Valley between Leenane and Letterfrack turn of the N59 onto the R334 towards Recess (this will bring you out again on the M59 below Clifden). The most spectacular part is along side Lough Innagh itself.
Sky Road starts at the northern edge of Clifden. The high road provides some fantastic views while travelling around the peninsular. This brings you back onto the N59 a few miles north of Clifden.
Just outside Lennane toward Clifden a road runs northwest toward Tully Cross. Most of the road runs along side Lough Fee and Lough Muck. Take the right hand road toward Rosroe Quay, this will give you magnificent views of Killary Harbour and Fjord and the Mweelrea mountains.
Delphi/Doo Lough just north of Leenan to Drummin is a fantastic drive through a series of valleys on the R335 after a kilometre or so it's worth a stop to look back! WOW! The rest of the scenery is just as impressive. After Drummin you come to Owenmore Bridge where you turn to bring you back onto the N59 which will bring you back towards Spiddal.
You would need to dedicate the full day to do this tour. However, if time is not permitted the bottom section (Spiddal – Moycullen – Maam Cross – Casla – Indreabhán – Spiddal) is easily doable.
Along the route there are plenty of places to stop and explore. A few personal favourite are Bridget's Gardens, Aunghure Castle, Glengowala mines, Kylemore Abbey and Allcock and Brown Museum.
An Spidéal – Indreabhán – Casla – Scribe – Rosmuc – Cill Chiarain – Carna – Caiseal – Tuaim Beola – Roundstone – Ballyconneely – Clifden – Recess – Maam Cross – Oughterard – Moycullen – An Spidéal
This drive will bring you through the heart of the Connemara Gaeltacht leading you on to Clifden the "capital" of Connemara. This tour can also features a detour; at Casla continue on to Carraroe (An Ceathru Rua) home of the famed Coral Beach. Head on to Beal an Daingin which leads you Ceantair na Oileáin, Leitir Móir, Gorumna Island and Leitir Mellain via a series of bridges and causeway. On return on the R374 this will bring you straight back to Casla where you can rejoin the R336.
A few places of interest on this tour are Padraic Pearse cottage in Rosmuc, MacDara Island (Holy Island) off Carna to magnificent beaches Gurteen and Dogs Bay outside Roundstone. Ballyconneely is the home of connemara championship golf links.
Max and Kevin run and operate two fishing boats on the famed Galway Bay. Where one can fish for species such as cod, shark, ray, ling and much more. They can cater for the individual or groups up to 14 persons. They operate from approximately 9am to roughly 5.30 to 6pm depending on tides. Evening charters also available.
Have been too afraid to try angling? No need at Spiddal angling school, you'll be an expert in no time… Guided fishing trips can be arranged along with walking tours from this centre.
Explore Ireland's only fjord on board the Connemara Lady, an all weather luxury cruise ship. Sailing departs from Leeane. See website for details.
Has Ireland's only glass bottom tour boat where one can see and majestic marine life off north connemara. The centre also has a museum which houses over two hundred and fifty displays. Working tours are also done from the centre.
Explore the corrib river and lake on the luxurious all weather Corrib Princess from woodquay only 5 minutes from city centre. An enjoyable stress free way to pass an afternoon.
All aboard the Isle of Inisfree which departs Ougherard and Cong. There are several types of tours exploring the north section of the Lough. The cruise which visits the monastic site of inchagcoil island and onward to Ashford Castle is my personal favourite.
Why not try windsurfing just six miles from the Park Lodge Hotel. Rusheen Bay is an enclosed Bay perfect for beginners with calm waters and prevailing cross winds. Other activates include kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding.
There are a number of horse riding schools in the area to choose from; including: Moycullen Riding Centre @ 087-2043944, Rusheen Riding School and Spiddal Riding School.
Award Winning Craft Shop. At Standúns you will find top quality Irish fashion & knitwear, crystal, china, jewellery and crafts. We have built our reputation on stocking a collection of the finest Ireland has to offer.
Approximately between Spiddal and Moycullen (7 miles from the Park Lodge Hotel) lies Loughwell Farm Park. It is a fun day out for the whole family. The park has a huge play barn along with its many friendly animals. No matter what the weather a fun day will be guaranteed.
The Galway Atlantaquaria in Salthill (8 miles from the Hotel) is a must see and do for kids of all ages. It has over 150 species of fish and invertebrates. Full Day children's explorer's workshops are available during the summer and school holidays.
A 25 thousand square foot indoor sports and leisure destination. Working advanced automated electronic technologies one can try their hand to test their skill at ten different sports.
An indoor adventure centre for kids and toddlers. Three storeys of climbing madness, slides, ball ponds and much more.
After major redevelopment the Museum is reopened hosting major exhibitions on all three storeys. They also host a special children's trail through the museum.
Within 2 miles of the Park Lodge Hotel, you can visit the Ceardlann, Spiddal Craft & Design Studios, where An Siopa Buí is located. Here you can visit their ceramic café where you can paint your own pottery and enjoy a wide range of craft activities. It is an activity based shop with lots of things to do. Children are welcome.
Ireland's first show mine is a historic 19th century silver and lead mine, situated approximately 17 miles from Park Lodge Hotel in Oughterard. They have guided tours every 20 minutes which explores the large marble chambers and caverns stubbed with lead and silver pyrite. At the end of the tour you can also try your hand at panning.
Brigit's Garden is situated in Roscahill approximately 13 miles from the Park Lodge Hotel. It is an unique magical family friendly Celtic garden. Explore the nature trail to discover a stone chamber, a crannog and the calendar sundial. The garden's are very family friendly with many special features for children including willow play tunnels and a kid's discovery trial.
Located at Lettershea, approximately an hour's drive from Park Lodge Hotel is Connemara Heritage and History Centre. It tells the story of Dan O Hara who was evicted from his home and forced to emigrate to New York in the 1840's. Dan's cottage and farm has been restored to show life in the 19th century. The centre also has a crannog ring and a clocháin.
The most picturesque place in Ireland and on e of the top visitor's attractions in the west of Ireland is Kylemlore Abbey and Victorian Walled Gardens lies between Clifen and Leenane approximately an hour and quarter drives from Park Lodge Hotel. The building date back to the 1860's when the Henry family built their dream home. The Benedictine Nuns took it over and make it into an Abbey in the 1920's. Beside the Abbey is an Gothic Church resembling a miniature Cathedral. The Abbey boasts a beautiful Victorian mature garden and recently restored glass houses.
There are many fine beaches nearby. Spiddal itself has three beaches (known locally as the prom, the sean céibh (nun's beach) and the pier. During the summer months the prom and the pier have a life guard on duty.
A little further west of Spiddal there is a sandy beach known as Trá Sailín but this does not have a life guard on duty. Continuing along the coast (approximately, 3 miles from Spiddal) you will reach Trá Mór which currently boasts a blue flag and life guard.
In Carraroe approximately 20 miles west there is an unique beach, Coral Beach, which is covered with fire coral.
Travelling east of the Park Lodge Hotel, there are also beaches in Furbo, Bearna and of course Sathill to name but a few in the area.
Leisureland, in Sathill is an award winning centre with a 25 metre swimming pool, kiddies pool with a pirate ship and a thrilling 65 meter water slide. During the summer months they also have a Perks Amusement Park.
This 25 meter, 6 lane swimming pool is located on the grounds of the National University of Ireland, Galway and is opened to the public daily from 2 – 4pm.
located 6 miles from Park Lodge Hotel halfway on the Bearna Moycullen Road. It is an 18 hole par 72 parkland course. The course was designed by R.J. Browne has unrivalled views of Galway Bay and the Burren.
is located in Salthill just 7 miles from the Park Lodge Hotel. The course which was established in 1895 is an excellent 18 hole parkland par 70 course.
lies at the edge of Oughterard village which is best described as an 18 hole parkland par 70 course which traditional limestone walls featuring throughout the course.
is located in Ballyconneely which is approximately an hour's drive from Park Lodge Hotel. The course is nestled by the rugged Atlantic Ocean and the Twelve Bens Mountains. The course is an enduring monument to its designer, Eddie Hackett with it's breath taking back 9.
This unique 9 hole is surrounded by water. It's located on Annaghavane Island, Lettermore, approximately 20 miles west of Park Lodge Hotel.
There is shopping to suit everyone's needs weather you wish to visit Galway City or stay local. Locally, within walking distance of the Park Lodge Hotel, you can visit Standun www.standun.com. Standun is an unique award winning family run store, now in its 3rd generation. The store carries a wide range of stock ranging from Aran knitwear to contemporary ladies fashion.
Ceardlann, An Spidéal www.spiddalcrafts.com. Spiddal Craft and Design Studios is a collection of 10 craft centre owner occupied at the edge of Spiddal village. Here one will find the artists selling their wears.