Best Things to See and Do in Connemara
Connemara is located in the western coast of Ireland in County Galway, its located south of Galway Bay and part of County Galway. The area is one of Ireland national parks. The area is full of beautiful mountain ranges and wild rugged landscapes with some picturesque lakes. The population of Connemara is 32,000 people. It’s a must-see when visiting Galway, its great just to spend a day touring around or maybe spend a couple of days enjoying everything the region has to offer!
Connemara gets its name from the “Conmhaicne Mara” which means the descendants of Con Mhac, an amazing ancestor of the sea. The old chiefs of the “Conmhaicne Mara” were named the O Kealy’s and date back to the mediaeval period.
Connemara spans 2,956 hectares of some of the best landscape you will see in Ireland, it has loads of visitor attractions and very interesting woodlands, turf bogs, this is where peat comes. The region has some unreal mountain ranges. The area is protected by certain Irish laws because it’s part of Ireland’s six National parks nationwide, the park opened to the public in the year 1980.
Some of Connemara is on the Wild Atlantic Way route, this driving route is one of the best road trips you will take, its just amazing.
See my post here on Best FREE stuff to do in Galway City!
1 – Visit a Gaeltacht Area!
The region is one of the last remaining areas that people use the Irish language. There is a Gaeltacht area in Connemara. You will notice as you travel through the region that some road signs are in two languages and some are in one language, that’s being Irish.
If you visit a pub in the Gaeltacht you may hear people speaking Irish! The language is taught in schools and used for educational purposes and there is an Irish TV station (TG4), the TV station has a headquarters in Connemara. There is an Irish speaking Radio station in Ireland too.
2 – Pop into the Connemara Marble Shop!
The region has its own brand of Marble that comes in a green colour, and a white colour. The marble is used to make household items, the marble is used to make jewellery. The marble dates back to around 600 million years ago!
The Connemara Marble Shop is located in Moycullen in County Galway, its a cool visitor centre with a retail shop selling all kinds of marble products. The visitor centre includes a tour that explains the history of the marble and how the products are made!
3 – Explore the Region!
The national park has loads to see with some of Connemara’s famous mountain ranges like the Twelve Pins. If you into hiking and walking the region has some much to see. Just go for a stroll around some of the lake areas and mountain ranges, it can be very interesting, you get that feeling of the great outdoors. The region is vast, make sure to bring good hiking or walking boots with you.
The Maumturks are a beautiful mountain range, the views from the Maumturkls are stunning, you can see the wonderful surrounding countryside that makes Connemara so popular. The highest point of the Maumturks is 701 metres which aren’t too bad! Exploring the region by foot is something to remember, you have to give it a try!
4 – Check out the Delhi Adventure Centre!
Delhi Adventure Centre is located in Lennane, Connemara, County Galway. The centre is a resort with loads to keep you busy. A huge range of activities are on offer in Delhi, water activities, land activities like aerial trek and abseiling.
You can try some raft building, kayaking, canoeing and there’s a nice spa to enjoy. Delhi has accommodation options, there is a hostel and 4-star hotel/resort rated property. Delhi Adventure Resort can cater to weddings, corporate groups and school tours, it really has something for all ages!
The resort is located in such a beautiful area in Lennane in Connemara, it has to be one of Ireland’s best adventure get always!
5 – Walk the Quiet Man Bridge!
The famous movie the Quiet Man with John Wayne was a massive hit loved by Irish all over the world. The movie starred Maureen O Hara. Some of the movie was filmed in Cong and other locations around Connemara.
The Quiet Man Bridge is located around 8 kilometres from the area of Ougherard. Ita must-see if you’re in the area, pop over for a look and get some photos on the Quiet Man Bridge!
Location of the Bridge – Leam, Oughterard
GPS – 53.427092140336, -9.4225597343029
6 – Pop over to Kylemore Abbey!
Kylemore Abbey is located in Pollacappul, Connemara County Galway. The building was built in 1867. The abbey was later used as a Benedictine monastery in the year 1920. The original monastery was started by Nuns was later had to flee to Belgium because of World War.
Kylemore Abbey is in a fantastic setting, being surrounded by water and picturesque mountain ranges, its a very peaceful location. The abbey is surrounded by the Druchruach mountain range and of the banks of the Lough Pollacappul in the heart of one of Ireland’s best National Parks.
Kylemore Abbey nowadays is a major tourist attraction and visitor centre, there are some amazing Victorian Walled Gardens to see. You can take a tour of the abbey and learn about it long and rich history. Food is available and lots of Irish products are on offer in gifts shop.
7 – See Killary Fjord!
Killary Fjord is located in the area of Lennane, the Fjord is one of three amazing glacial fjords located in the Emerald Isle. The depth of the Fjord is forty-five metres at its deepest point. Killary Fjord is surrounded by a superb landscape, its show Connemara in all its beauty, where the Fjord meets the mountains and creates such a beautiful area.
The area around Killary Fjord is a nice area for a picnic or maybe a nice walk. There are mussels grown in Killary Fjord, the mussels are set around 8 metres deep. The Fjords is the ideal place for growing mussels with the amazing blend of salt water and fresh water mixture. This creates the perfect environment for growing mussels, that has a beautiful sweet flavour.
Tours are available of the mussel farm and you can learn about the whole process.
Killary Fjord Shellfish Company that farm the mussels and conduct tours.
Another great thing to do at Killary Fjord is to take a boat tour of the fjord, head out onto the water and see it first hand. Killary Fjord boat tours take groups out onto the Fjord to experience the panoramic views of the amazing surrounding landscape. You will see the mussel farming close up and learn all about it. If you’re lucky you will even see some dolphins on the tour. The boat even has a nice cafe and bar on board, its the perfect spot for a pint of Guinness!
Ticket price for the boat tours are
|Child 0 – 10||FREE|
|Youth 11 – 17||€12.50|
|Family Young Children||€47.00|
|Family Older Children||€59.00|
8 – Connemara Heritage and History Centre
This cool award-winning visitor centre has loads to see. The Heritage and History centre is located around six kilometres from Clifden and is a wonderful part of the Emerald Isle. You will learn about the region and the different changes down through the years. There are audio and visual displays in Irish, English, German and French.
The centre features a ring fort and a reconstruction of a crannog (old settlement type house built on lakes sometimes). The centre has a clochaun (stone beehive-shaped buildings). Its a really interesting centre to visit with guided tours available that explains everything about Ireland’s rich history including turf cutting and other demonstrations are available on request.
There is a nice craft shop on-site with jewellery, knitwear and plenty of other Irish products to choose from. The centre has good food on offer in the restaurant too and some nice Irish scones to try.
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