Connemara Loop, which is part of the famous Wild Atlantic Way in Ireland, is an 85 km road of beautiful beaches, spectacular mountains, picturesque lakes, small traditional villages, and stunning views of the coastline in County Galway. There are so many worthy stops on the Connemara Loop but the following are the major places to see.
Related content: 16 Must See Places in County Galway, Ireland
Letterfrack & Connemara National Park
If you are coming from Galway City, Letterfrack village is the first stop on the Connemara Loop. The village is home to Connemara National Park and the famous Diamond Mountain. There are a few shops and lodges in the village, perfect for tourists who want to stay in the village for a night before climbing Diamond Mountain in the morning while the temperature is cool. Traditional live music is played in the bars and the village hosts a few festivals in a year.
Kylemore Abbey is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Ireland. It is home to Kylemore Castle which was built in the 1800’s by a wealthy businessman as a gift to his wife. In 1920, the Benedictine nuns took residence. Victorian Walled Garden is another beautiful attraction at Kylemore Abbey; you can take walks admiring the beautiful flowers, thereafter drink tea at the Garden Tea House. Woodland and Lakeshore Walks; as well as a visit to the Gothic Church are other activities loved by visitors. Kylemore Abbey is open from 9 am to 6 pm, an individual adult ticket costs €13.
Inagh Valley is one of the most beautiful places for a scenic drive in Ireland. Mountains and lakes beautifully create a picturesque illustration perfect for an Irish postcard.
This little village on the N59 road is located very close to Glendalough Lake. Tourists stop by the village to enjoy fishing at the lake. Nearby, you will find Máméan Holy Shrine. Golf is also a popular activity in Recess. Bed & Breakfasts are available for travelers who want to spend the night.
Maam Cross is basically a spot on a crossroads where mountains and lakes surround the vibrant local place full of activities such as sheep and pony fairs held in the month of October every year.
Here in Maam, you are sandwiched between Partry Mountain range and Maamturk Mountain range. Places to see in this area include Lough Corrib, Kilmeelickin Church, and Leaba Pháraic. Leaba Pháraic is Patrick’s bed and considered a place of pilgrimage. You will find the place on your way to Leenane.
The small village of Leenaun sits right near the County Mayo border; it is surrounded by mountains and a body of water that brings beauty to the area. There are traditional pubs in the village that are worth a visit.
Some would argue that Aasleagh Falls is not really right on the Connemara Loop but further up towards the County Mayo border. It is only 6 minutes drive from Leenaun Village (about 4 km); you will appreciate the views.
If you are looking for magnificent views of the landscape, go to Leenane. Just off Killary Harbour and near Aesleagh Falls, Leenane is surrounded by mountains that add to the dramatic landscape. Leenane is home to the Cultural Center which offers information on the culture and history of Leenane.
Killary Harbor is one of the stops on the Connemara Loop and located near the County Mayo border. Some people go to this area to enjoy the views while other tourists take boat tours provided by Killary Fjord Boat Tours.
Lettergesh Beach is one of the finest beaches in Ireland; it is known for its white sand and turquoise water. It is located in Lettergesh and connected to other equally clean and well-known beaches. There is a dive center where people interested in diving can meet up and enjoy the beautiful water. Other things to do include fishing and mountain climbing. There is also a wide selection of Bed & Breakfasts.
Tully Cross means ‘cross on the hill’. This little village is so pretty and unique because of its thatched cottages. There is a church in the village that adds to the village’s beautiful ambiance because of its beautiful windows. Also, don’t miss the historical ‘Ogham Stone’, and the Connemara Mussel Festival that takes place every year during the Bank Holiday in the month of May.
Just a few miles from Tully Cross, you will find a small village of Tully that also sits on the Wild Atlantic Way and Connemara Loop. Trá Ban Beach and its pier is the magnet for families with children. Activities favored in Tully are swimming, fishing, walking and picnicking.
In Renvyle, you will find a beautiful beach, Renvyle Castle, and Renvyle House which now serves as a hotel. Initially, Renvyle House belonged to one of the Galway tribes family and considered historical.
Derryinver is found on the Renvyle Peninsula right on the coast. Six Pillar Stone Alignment is an archaeological site found in this area, which attracts tourists driving on the Wild Atlantic Way. Ballinakill Harbor, which is home to colorful seabirds, is also found here.
Good luck and always travel in style!