Top 5 best pubs and bars in Carlingford that everyone needs to experience

The best pubs and bars in Carlingford provide a great time that everyone should experience, and we are here to guide you to the best places in Carlingford.

Carlingford in County Louth is the hub of adventure in Ireland and home to the beautiful Carlingford Lough.

Still, when the adrenaline-filled day is done, it is time to sit back, relax, and grab a pint; today, we will guide you towards the absolute best places to do just this.

Bars and pubs in Ireland offer more than just a place to quench your thirst; they offer you an incredible atmosphere, live traditional music, historical charm, and always smile with a service.

So, if you’re looking for a real treat, let us show you the five best pubs and bars in Carlingford that everyone needs to experience.

5. Carlingford Arms – all you could want under one roof

The Carlingford Arms pub has everything you could ever want under one roof.
Credit: Facebook / @carlingfordarmsmurphysbandb

As one of the most popular Carlingford pubs, the Carlingford Arms is a place that needs to be on your bucket list when in the area.

Priding itself on being “the best pub”, with “the best food, the best entertainment, and the best craic” in town is one of the best things to do in Carlingford. Why wouldn’t you want to experience this?

Here, you can relax lough side and enjoy their famous seafood, have a cocktail and tapas with friends at The Loft Cocktail Bar, and be entertained by live music.

At the end of it all, you can even head on up to your room at their onsite B&B. What more could you want?

Address: Newry St, Liberties of Carlingford, Carlingford, Co. Louth

4. John Longs – a charming pub for a quiet pint

John Longs in Carlingford is the perfect pub to enjoy a quiet pint in.
Credit: Facebook / @johnlongsbar

If you are looking for a quiet vibe, complete with a creamy pint of Guinness in hand, and live trad music playing in the background, then this is the one for you.

As one of the best bars and pubs in Carlingford, John Longs is well known for having a decent pint of ‘the black stuff (Guinness), so this alone should already entice you.

This pub also has a traditional old-time vibe, which keeps people coming back time and time again – especially on the weekends.

With pub grub on the menu, it is no wonder that anyone looking for an authentic traditional Irish experience comes here.

Address: Grange Church, Monksland, Carlingford, Co. Louth

3. Taaffes Castle Bar – one of the best pubs and bars in Carlingford

Taaffes Castle Bar is without a doubt one of the best bars in Carlingford.
Credit: Facebook /

Popular with hen and stag parties, as well as tourists and locals on the weekends, this atmospheric joint is a hub of entertainment.

They have a disco bar and live music acts on Saturday nights and, of course, plenty of hen and stag activities for the groups on their weekend away. As well as this, there is the option to sit al fresco in their renowned beer garden and listen to a live outdoor band.

You can even have a quiet pint in the ‘secret garden’, nestled within the castle walls. Thus, making this the only tavern in a town with two beer gardens with two very different atmospheres. How cool?

Address: Newry St, Liberties of Carlingford, Carlingford, Co. Louth

2. PJ O’ Hares – Carlingford’s best-known bar

PJ O' Hares is widely regarded as being the best-known bar in Carlingford.
Credit: Facebook / @PjOHares

Of course, one of the best pubs and bars in Carlingford is PJ O’ Hares. This iconic pub features award-winning food to tantalise your taste buds and a cosy bar or beer garden to make the most out of during your visit.

They are well known for their fresh Carlingford Oysters, which keep people coming back repeatedly. The oysters are nicely washed down with a pint of creamy Guinness, which they are masters at pouring.

The beer garden is second to none when the summer months come round. Still, if you find yourself here in winter, make your way to the open fire and relax with some excellent food and drink; it is a year-round experience.

Address: Tholsel St, Liberties of Carlingford, Carlingford, Co. Louth, A91 TC58

1. Lily Finnegans – the best pub in Carlingford

Lily Finnegans is in our opinion the very best pub in Carlingford.
Credit: Facebook / @lilyfinnegans

Just 5 km (3.1 miles) from the centre of town, situated along the coast, you will find this authentic traditional Irish pub.

Located deep in the Cooley Peninsula, the small building has remained as old school as can be. Oozing charm and history, there is always a crowd to be found soaking up the atmosphere.

You will find a bar, a snug, a pool room, an outdoor area, and a giant big screen at the bar for all the sports fans.

Music fans will love the changing live music, which is held on Saturday nights, Sundays, and bank holidays throughout the year. So, every week is a different experience, making it one of the best pubs and bars in Carlingford.

Address: Whitestown, Carlingford, Co. Louth, A91 D326

Notable mentions

The town of Carlingford is home to many great pubs and bars.
Credit: Ireland’s Content Pool
  • Ma Bakers: A popular choice, with epic fish and chips, a great pint and good craic.
  • Juniors Bar: Carlingford’s newest bar, est. 2021, with evening entertainment, accommodation options, and excellent food.
  • Rabelo Wine Bar: A top spot for a coffee or a cocktail, with a waterfront location.
  • Lough Lounge Bar & Restaurant: A four-star bar and restaurant located at The Four Seasons for a bit of luxury in a stunning location.

FAQs about the best pubs and bars in Carlingford

What are some highly rated pubs in Carlingford?

The Carlingford Arms Restaurant and Pub, Taaffes Castle Bar, Lily Finnegans, and PJ O’Hares are among the most highly rated pubs in Carlingford.

What are the best restaurants in Carlingford?

Kingfisher Bistro and The Bay Tree Restaurant are some of the best restaurants in Carlingford.

What county is Carlingford in?

Carlingford is located in Country Louth, on the border to County Down in Northern Ireland.

What is Carlingford known for?

Carlingford is known for its idyllic coastal scenery featuring a glacial fjord and a lough, which is used for many adventurous activities. It has the stunning backdrop that is Slieve Foy Mountain. As a historic town, there are many cultural places of interest.

Is Carlingford far from Dublin?

Carlingford town is 90km (55.9 miles) north of Dublin.

Carlingford is an ideal location for everyone to visit. It is easily accessible from the south or the north of the island, so there is no reason not to make a trip to Carlingford, and its epic bars, a top priority.

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