Framed by soaring cliffs and the wild waters of the Atlantic Ocean, County Clare hugs the west coast of Ireland. In addition to the county town of Ennis, it’s home to the UNESCO-designated Cliffs of Moher and the 15th-century Bunratty Castle where medieval re-enactments are staged.
Things to do in Clare
Stretching from the banks of Lough Derg to the lighthouse-topped headland of Loop Head, County Clare is one of Ireland’s most picturesque regions.
Hike along the Cliffs of Moher. Rising more than 100 metres above the Atlantic Ocean, the Cliffs of Moher offer sweeping views across the Atlantic Ocean that stretch all the way to the Aran Islands on a clear day. Follow the 18-kilometre-long Cliff Walk and visit the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Experience, which details the ecology and geology of the area. Highlights include a multimedia display offering a bird’s eye view from the cliffs and a video showcasing the underwater landscapes at their base.
Visit Bunratty Castle. Once a stronghold of the O'Brien Clan, Bunratty Castle brings Ireland’s history to life in the form of a recreated 19th-century village. In addition to its 15th-century castle, it also features reproductions of traditional country homesteads and thatched-roof cottages. Admire the vintage traveller wagons and pop your head into MacNamara’s Pub before seeing the hand-carved furnishings and tapestries that decorate the castle’s interior.
Tour Aillwee Cave. Encompassing majestic stalactites and stalagmites, Aillwee Cave was discovered in 1944 by a local farmer and his dog. It is now accessible to the public, with around 300 metres of passageways to explore along the route of an underground river. After exiting the cave, you can experience one of the impressive flight shows at the on-site Birds of Prey Centre, which also hosts guided Hawk Walks.
Getting around Clare
Shannon Airport is the main aviation gateway to County Clare and has flights to destinations across Europe and North America. Regular trains connect from Limerick and Galway to the Ennis railway station while buses travel to smaller towns and villages throughout County Clare.