15 of Ireland’s best-kept secrets you shouldn’t miss this year

As holidays abroad are less and less likely to occur over the next few weeks, we take a look at all Ireland has to offer.

If you’re planning a vacation this summer and feel like you’ve seen it all, this list of hidden attractions might just be for you.

Here is a list of 15 best kept secrets in Ireland:

1.The Serpents Lair Inis Mor, also known as “The Wormhole”.



Inis Mor Snake Lair

The original name of this mythical place is “Poll na bPeist”.

The sharp edges of the Serpents’ lair in the Aran Islands appear to have been cut using 21 st machines of the century. However, the wormhole actually formed naturally.

The natural pool hosted the Red Bull Cliff Diving Series in 2017.

2.Bull rock



Bull rock island

This attraction is located on the Beara Peninsula on Dursey Island in Cork.

Visitors cannot access the island itself, but you can take a tour of it on a boat tour. You will also be able to see Bull Rock Lighthouse and learn about the story behind the film as an island.

3.Doon Fort Donegal



Doon Fort Donegal

This unique fort is located in the middle of Loghadoon, near Narin and Portnoo. The fort is believed to have belonged to the Breslin and then the O’Boyles during its lifetime until it fell into disrepair.

Although the fort is located on a private island, the family rents boats for those who wish to visit this fantastic floating fort during the summer.

4.Keash Co. Sligo Caves



Keash Caves, Sligo

This unique place with breathtaking views is believed to predate the pyramids of Egypt by 500 to 800 years.

Geological inspections have led experts to believe that the first humans lived in the Keash Caves.

There are 17 caves to explore in total, making this tour worth a visit.

5.The secret waterfall of Donegal



The secret waterfall of Donegal

Hidden on the Slieve League Peninsula in Donegal, this waterfall nestled between Killybegs and Kilcar is from another world.

Knowing the tide times before visiting this hidden gem is important, and permission must be granted by the local farmer before you can enter.

6.Gougane Barra



Gougane Barra, Liège

Gougane Barra in County Cork has the capacity to take your breath away with its stunning views and scenic location.

The rugged mountains encapsulate the great valley and the lake, peaking at over 370 meters, making it a must-see.

7.Victors Way Indian Sculpture Park



Victor’s Way Sculpture Garden, Wicklow

The garden in the Wicklow Mountains is a one-of-a-kind attraction.

Designed as a meditation garden for adults, Victor’s Way discourages family trips with young children as they can disrupt the serenity of the garden.

Visitors will enjoy many impressive sculptures submerged in water as they stroll through this relaxing spectacle.

8.Diamond Hill



Diamond Hill, Galway

Located in Galway, Diamond Hill is perfect for those who love the great outdoors.

Well worth the hour of walking it takes to get there, with stunning views over the hill.

Hikers can also take a second trail which can take up to three hours.

9.The heart shaped lake



Lough Ouler, Wicklow

Located in the Tonelagee Mountains, if you fancy seeing this spectacular lake, take your hiking boots.

The hike can take up to two and a half hours, depending on your pace, but it’s well worth it.

The lake nestled in the Wicklow Mountains makes for a fantastic day out with so much more to see in the area.

ten.Aghaigh an Aird or “the devil’s chimney”



The Devil’s Chimney, Sligo

Ireland’s tallest waterfall is a real hidden gem.

To see this spectacular place, you have to take a slightly strenuous 45-minute walk. However, this hidden waterfall is well worth the sacrifice.

11.The Steps on the Isle of Arranmore



The Steps of the Isle of Arranmore

Arranmore Island, Donegal, is an incredible sight. This isolated island is located 5 km off the coast of Donegal.

The island can be explored by day by taking the rocky staircase integrated into the landscape. At night, relax in one of the island’s lively pubs and enjoy traditional music.

12.Downpatrick’s Head



Downpatrick’s Head, Mayo

Near the village of Ballycastle in Mayo, the stunning sea stack of Dun Briste is definitely a hidden gem.

Located off the coast of Mayo, this beautiful coastline is perfect for a day trip and fantastic photo opportunities.

13.Drimnagh Castle



Drimnagh Castle, Dublin

The only castle in Ireland with an intact moat, Drimnagh Castle, is straight out of a fairy tale.

Dated 1215, the ancient castle occupied a Norman knight, Hugo de Bernivale, in exchange for his family’s help during the invasion of Ireland.

Steeped in history, this is truly one of Ireland’s best kept secrets.

14.Saut Castle



Leap Castle, Offaly

Considered Ireland’s most haunted castle, Leap is located 4 miles from Roscrea in Coolderry.

According to legend, a lady in red wanders the castle with a silver blade after dark. The woman is believed to have given birth to a baby while being held captive by the O’Carrolls. After the birth, the O’Carrolls killed the woman’s baby, leaving her to hide in the hallways.

15.Pointe Island



Spike Island, Cork

A short ferry ride from the village of Cobh on Cork Island Spike hosted a monastery, a 24-acre fortress and the largest convict depot in the world.

Considered the Alcatraz of Ireland, Spike Island has a dark and interesting past.

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