Sligo is known for its rugged coastal beauty and literary history. It’s a very scenic county with great beaches to watch the sunset. If you follow your stomach when you travel you’ll be happy to hear they have plenty of award-winning restaurants. It’s somewhere to go if you want an adventure and to soak in some breath-taking Irish views. If you’re sick of only seeing breath-taking views, beach sunsets and rolling countryside on your social media instead of real life, then head to Sligo pronto. Here are five of our top sites in Sligo sure to take your breath away.
5. Lough Gill
Lough Gill is an incredible freshwater lake. It’s situated in both Sligo and Leitrim, although mostly in Sligo. Woodlands, where you can take relaxing walks, surround the lake. If you’re interested in taking a trip around the lake, you can take the Rose of Innisfree Boat Tour. Let the boat’s skipper entertain you with stories of folklore and history. The boat carries up to 70 people so there’s plenty of space to take in the stunning scenery.
Lough Gill is widely known for its tranquillity and beauty, especially as W. B. Yeats mentions it in his poetry! The lake contains about 20 small islands, including the Isle of Innisfree, which W. B. Yeats describes in his famous poem The Lake Isle of Innisfree. It was written in 1888 but today, 130 years later we can still see why it was his inspiration and why Yeats chose this tranquil place to write about.
“I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.”
4. Rosses Point
You can find Rosses Point, village and beach, at the entrance to Sligo Bay. The beach is lifeguard patrolled during the bathing season so you can ensure you’ll be able to have a peaceful swim in the sea. As well as the beauty of Sligo Bay, the village is set against the backdrop of the stunning Dartry mountain range. It’s a great place for a family day out.
If you’re one of those people who find lighthouses fascinating, then you’re in for a treat as Rosses Point has a few to choose from. You can take a walking or cycling tour along the cliff or seaside. There are stunning views to enjoy all around, as Rosses Point has Knocknarea to the south and Benbulben to the north.
Benbulben is a large rock formation in Sligo. I promise it’s a lot more exciting than it sounds. It’s part of the Dartry Mountain range and it’s the perfect spot for hikers who want to reach a great vantage point to get a better view of beautiful Sligo. It’s a great day out of people who like their excursions to be a little more wild and adventurous. The north side of Benbulben can warrant some fierce winds from the Atlantic so for a safer much smoother climb, take the south side.
2. Coney Island (Inishmulclohy)
Not to be mistaken with New York’s Coney Island. Sligo’s Island is still worth the visit as it might not be an amusement area but it is the largest of three spectacular islands off the north coast of Ireland. The island is easily accessible by boat from the pier at Rosses Point, but driving across by Cummeen Strand when the tide is out is the most popular route. Before you even get to the island, the drive across the ocean floor is fun in itself and a bit unique.
The island is home to an abundance of wild rabbits, which will suit you down to the ground if you prefer your wildlife to be cute, fast and fluffy. It’s the perfect place to escape to for the day. It’s a relaxing retreat with plenty of scenic views from the quiet beaches, old stone walls, little rabbits and crashing waves.
1. Strandhill Beach
Strandhill is a beautiful stretch of sandy, clean beach. If you’re the kind of person who wants to explore our beautiful emerald isle in a camper van, you’re in luck. This Sligo beach has a great camping grounds just adjacent to it, where you’ll be awoken by the sounds of crashing waves and be able to see a breath-taking beach sunset from the comfort of your driver’s seat. The beach is perfect for long family walks. A stroll up from the beach you have the vibrant, pretty seaside village of Strandhill. Of course you can’t leave Strandhill without an ice cream for the famous mammy Johnson’s. You can get some fantastic pictures at sunset on the beautiful Strandhill beach with your cone. It’s also a great surfing spot. The strong waves here ensure hundreds of surfers flock to this sandy haven.
Written by Sarah Talty.