On the doorstep of some of Ireland’s most breathtaking coastal landscapes, Donegal Town has everything a visitor could ask for. As well as a great mix of pubs, restaurants and shops, it has lots of hotels offering great accommodation at very affordable prices.
There are plenty of three star hotels to choose from on the outskirts of town too. Many of the most luxurious ones, offering fine dining, fitness, beauty and spa facilities, can be found nestled along the shoreline of Lough Eske, one of Ireland’s most beautiful stretches of water.
In Donegal Town itself, most of the hotels, pubs, restaurants, shops and coffee houses revolve around The Diamond. The open and welcoming pedestrianised area is the real focal point of a town that is full of charm and you’ll have no difficulty finding somewhere with a warm Irish welcome to relax in.
Perfectly set in a spot where the River Eske meets Donegal Bay, with the Bluestack Mountains providing a beautiful backdrop, Donegal Town is a popular tourist destination. Standards of accommodation are high and there is usually plenty of entertainment on offer, with the town’s pubs offering traditional live music most nights in the summer.
Hotels and Attractions
Staying in the centre of Donegal Town, you’ll never be far from an excellent eatery or entertainment venue, and its main attractions are all nearby too. Once home to the O’Donnells, the powerful chieftains who ruled the north-west of Ireland from the 15th to 17th centuries, the town has a rich history. Nowhere is it better revealed than in Donegal Castle, a wonderfully preserved fortress filled with fine French tapestries and Persian rugs.
It was originally constructed by the O’Donnells in 1474 but was lost to fire in 1607. It was rebuilt about 16 years later, along with a neighbouring three-storey Jacobean house, and a major restoration project in the 1990s has helped create a truly atmospheric attraction.
The Old Graveyard, housed in the ruins of a former friary at the end of the town’s quay, is where one of the most important sources of early Irish history, The Annals of the Four Masters, was created and an obelisk was installed in The Diamond in 1937 in its honour.
If you like boat trips, you can enjoy the delights of Donegal Bay from one of the waterbuses that provide 75-minute tours taking in historic sites, seal-inhabited coves, castle ruins and an island manor. If you want a bit of bespoke retail therapy head to Donegal Craft Village, where you can pick up hand crafted pieces of jewellery, fabric, ironwork and pottery from one of its little studios.
Finding the Perfect Hotel
There is so much to see and do during a trip to Donegal and you need to make sure you experience everything offered by one of Ireland’s most impressive counties. As far as three star hotels are concerned, you can rest assured that you’ll have no trouble finding the perfect place to stay, no matter what you’re looking for.