Willowtree Cottage, Ballyliffin,
Co. Donegal,
Republic of Ireland
Please do contact Karyn at +44 7517 283 555 if further information is required.
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Ballyliffin village is approximately 30 minutes drive from Derry City, 45 minutes drive from Letterkenny, 2 hours drive from Belfast and 4 hours drive from Dublin.

Ballyliffin is in a lovely scenic area of the Inishowen Peninsula, surrounded by hills, near the mouth of Trawbreaga Bay and the sentinel rock known as Glashedy Island, just off the mainland, which can be viewed from many vantage points.
 
Ballyliffin village is approximately 5 minutes walking from Willowtree Cottage.
 
Attractions nearby:
 
Isle of Doagh Famine Village:
Perhaps the most popular attraction on nearby Doagh Island has to be the Famine Village. This is a family run outdoor museum, with displays and models depicting buildings and tableaux of life in Ireland during the great famine of the 1840's and onward. When visiting, you must go on the guided tour for a most fascinating account of the local history, traditions and customs. Refreshments are served afterwards. In the summer months, the centre has live music and dance performed by local artists, and in December, the centre transforms into Santa's Lapland; magic, for young and old alike!

A popular local activity, (to mention just one) is hill walking; - perfect for the area, although the main attraction here has to be the very popular Ballyliffin Golf Club, unique for its 2 links; the old and the new, and a great new state-of-the-art clubhouse.
 

Around Ballyliffin and within less than half an hours driving; some other attractions include:

  • Inishowen Tourism office.When passing through Buncrana, please call in to see Inishowen Tourism and get all the information on the peninsula you will need for a well spent break. Bun Crannach, meaning end of the Cran river. Provincial capital of the peninsula known by some as "the Queen of Donegal". It was, once the stronghold of the O'Doherty clan, a former garrison town with some fine architecture from that time and home to playwright Frank McGuinness. Revolutionary Wolfe Tone was held at Buncrana Castle upon his capture in 1798. A bustling and vibrant town, it's well worth a stop for its fine range of hostelries with regular music sessions still taking place in OFlahartaighs on a Wednesday or O'Doherty's on a Thursday.
  • Glennevin Waterfall at Clonmany. The spectacular Glenevin waterfall is located between Straid and Crossconnel, 2km from the village of Clonmany. The roadside entrance to the waterfall and picnic area is beside the Glen House, but you'll need to park further down the hill towards Clonmany.
    This waterfall cascades fresh mountain water descending over black rock from an astounding height of 30 feet. The expanse at the top measures 15 yards which curls gracefully to 1.5 yards at the bottom. The basin below called Pohl"an-eas, derives its meaning from the foam which lies on the surface of the pool. Poll-an-Eas translates into English as the "ferment pool". It's a leisurely 20 minute walk up a gentle gradient to get to the waterfall, but the kids will love it - the meandering babbling stream and wild hawthorn bushes is a veritable fairyland for fun and games.
  • Carrickabraghey Castle. On a large rock, named the Friar's Rock in the Isle of Doagh, stands the forlorn ruins of Carrackabraghey Castle. The translation of the Irish name into English is Castlebrack. It is commonly accepted that it was erected before 1600 by Phelemy Brasleigh O'Doherty. At that time Carrickabraghey was almost an island with little ground separating it from the mainland.
    The castle has changed hands many times and was once occupied by Mc Faul the 11th descendant of Prince Eoghain, son of Niall and the nine hostages. It was last inhabited in 1665.
  • Clonmany Wildlife Museum. Just outside of Clonmany is the this museum which has preserved wildlife including Irish and international exhibits - some of Ireland's rarest birds including choughs, corncrakes and other birds of prey are on display.
  • Straid Church, Clonamny. Straid Church is situated approximately one mile out of Clonmany on the Urris road. Founded by St Colmb in the 6th century it is now a disused Protestant church. Incidentally, the village of Clonmany derived its name from a piece of land there which has three corners. The monastery which was situated across the water at Binnon has no ruins to speak of but was once inhabited by 350 monks.On the Church grounds, a rock with the traces of St Colmcilles knees is said to act as a cure for any ailment. To avail of the cure , it is believed one should rub whatever part of the body that was ill or sore with the water in the rock and then to bless yourself. Tradition tells us that in the past the locals would swear by the well before they would swear by a Doctor.
  • Ballyliffin Golf Club. Two championship links –The Old Links and Glashedy Links. Ireland's most northerly golf complex is situated on the Inishowen peninsula in North Donegal, just 25 miles from Derry City. The 36-hole complex at Ballyliffin is ranked amongst the very finest links tracks in the world. A young 16 year old called Rory McElroy holds the course record and came here directly after his first major in 2011.
  • Buncrana Municipal Golf Club. Great municipal 9 hole course behind Inishowen Tourist Office & Drift Inn in Buncrana. Be warned, sone holes cross each other!
  • North West Golf Club. Highly regarded historic 18 hole links course with a proud tradition in golfing circles.
  • Greencastle Golf Club. Scenic 18 hole links course overlooking the mouth of Lough Foyle near Greencastle.
  • Redcastle Golf Club. 18 hole course beside the Redcastle Carlton hotel.
  • Malin Head. It is Ireland's most northerly point, but also an area of great scenic beauty and of historical, scientific and ecological importance.
    A tall derelict building known locally as "The Tower" was built in 1908 by the Admiralty, and later used as a Lloyds Signal Station. During the Second World War, the small huts were built and used by Irish defence forces to keep a lookout and protect Ireland's neutrality. It is also a perfect starting point for a ramble along the cliffs to Hell's Hole, a remarkable subterranean cavern 250 feet long and 8 feet wide, into which the tide rushes with great force. Nearby is a picturesque natural arch called the Devil's Bridge.
  • Fort Dunree Military Museum with its Naval Guns. There's a lot to see and take in at this historical military fort, the last piece of property to become part of Eire in 1938. Look out for the Guns of Dunree exhibition, The Rockhill collection, wildlife discovery room, scenic walks, souvenir shop & cafe. Limited disabled access - some tricky gravel and terrain. Open daily from 10-6 all year round.
  • The town of Carndonagh.
  • The Maritime Museum and Planetarium at Greencastle. The former coastguard station houses a fine collection on the history of local sailing as well as the Spanish Armada as well as a state of the art planetarium. Across the road, look out for a memorial to all those souls who were lost to the sea in the Inishowen locality.
  • The town of Culdaff with the famous McGrory's Pub, Restaurant, Hotel and Mac's Backroom Bar - a venue where you can be assured of good service, nice food, a blazing turf fire, and great craic. A venue for musical talent from all parts of the country and around the world. The Backroom Bar has hosted many top names in music.
  • St Mura's Cross at Fahan. Fahan graveyard is the site of St. Mura's cross as well as the graves of Agnes Jones, the true founder of modern nursing and of Horatio Nelson's eponymous 11 year old nephew of the admiral.
  • Cooley Cross. The cross stands on what is believed to be the entrance to the monastery established by St Finian and dates back to the 11th century. It was the indignation that St. Finian felt at St. Colmcille copying a text of his without permission that lead to the establishment of the earliest example of copyright infringement and the ruling by King Diarmaid that "as to every every cow, its calf , so to every book, its copy".
    The cross contains a pierced ring and a hole, suggesting it may originally have been a more ancient hole stone carved to help pagans make the transition to Christianity. The footprint on the base stone is supposed to be that of St. Patrick himself. Beside it is a building known as the Skull House. It was originally an oratory but later became a mortuary.
  • Northburgh Castle. The greatest castle on the peninsula is located on a rock platform, which rises out of Lough Foyle. It has a strategic command of this section of the lough, near its mouth. This awesome building utilised the advanced construction techniques of the Normans and the remarkable use of the natural rock to build a fortress intended to prevent attacks from Scotland and to act as a staging post for the final assault on the heartlands of Gaelic Ulster.
  • St. Eigne's Holy Well. At the top of Mamore, you should stop off to view St. Eigne's Holy Well, renowned for its healing qualities and situated beside shrines to the Virgin Mother and St. Padre Pio.
    There's a small tin jug by the well and you are encouraged to fill a bottle of holy water to bring home and cure ailments from the eyes to the limbs. By the grottos, you will notice relics of deceased, often young people, left by their families. Despite the inhospitality of the terrain, you'll notice how all of the mementos are remarkably well preserved. They are traditionally cleared on the 15th of August, the Feast of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, the day on which Christ's mother was brought up to Heaven 40 days after her earthly death.
    St Padre Pio is a saint particularly close to the Irish. This Italian monk died in 1968 was believed to have both stigmata and the ultimate party piece, bilocation, the power to be in two places at once!
  • Glengad. This area is on the scenic Inishowen 100 coastal route and you can reach it by driving or walking through some of the most rugged and scenic countryside imaginable and well worth a visit. For generations Glengad has been a traditional fishing area, a practice still continued today and where the visitor can take in views of Inishtrahull, Rathlin islands and further out to sea, the Western Isles of Scotland.
  • Inishowen Surf School. 
  • Wee Ceilidh House of Maghermore. Every Tuesday night from 10pm year round. Tea and sandwiches provided. Free entry. Contact Mickey McClure on 0749174526
    Started up by their late brother John in 1985, Mary and Theresa McGonagle have had music and dance in this proper rambling house no matter what the weather. A big open fire and some down to earth hospitality are on offer each week. The most authentic and price-friendly night of culture you'll find in the peninsula.
  • Buncrana ferry terminal. A handy service getting tourists from Inishowen to the Fanad peninsula. Limited Summertime service during July-August. Ensure you ring the company before making your trip and ensure you've left plenty of time to get there.
  • Greencastle ferry terminal. Get across to Northern Ireland and the Causeway Coast with ease by using this handy ferry service. Make sure you check the timetable and allow yourself plenty of time to get to the ferry.
Walking:
  • Binnion Walk: Binnion, Ballyliffin Duration: 2.5hrs; Difficulty: Easy/Medium : Grade 2
    www.hillwalkers.com
    Starting from Pollan strand at Ballyliffin, the route follows the cliff path and rises to the summit overlooking Lough Swilly and the Atlantic coast. Views of Glashedy island and nearby Malin Head and the Urris Hills to the south provide a scenic backdrop. The route is unmarked and travels over open headland, it may be wet and boggy in places.
  • Inishowen Head Walk: Distance: 8km; Time:2-3 hours; Difficulty: easy
    Vantage point at north-eastern tip of Inishowen offering views along Antrim coast to Giant's Causeway and Scotland. Starting point of Inishowen Head loop. There's signage to help you on your way at the start and further signposts with blue flags along the way. It's an old bog road where the terrain can be rough and wet.
  • Lough Swilly Coastal Walk: Distance: 12 km; Time: 2.5 - 3 hrs
    Starting at Linsfort castle, you'll be making your way south along the coast past Stragill strand, Ned's point, Buncrana castle and as far as Swan park. The walk back along the same route will offer equally fine scenery to enjoy.
  • Mailin Head Trail: Start of the nature walk out to the real Malin Head, some 2.5km from Banba's crown. Stick by the coast to the left and enjoy that fresh air.
  • Start of D'Arcy Magee trek: Distance: 3 km; Time: 1 hr
    This is more of a stroll to be honest. Go down to Tremone Bay, then make your way to the Thomas D'Arcy Magee memorial, on to Drumaville then Carrowmenagh before making your way back. D'Arcy Magee fled Ireland from here in 1848 and became one of the founders of modern day Canada.
  • Start of trek for Sliabh sneacht:
    Park well off the road and take the trek by the bridge where there's a sharp bend. At over 2000 feet, you'll need to be fit for this trek, but the view will make it all worthwhile.
  • Start of trek to Kinnagoe bay: Distance: 18 km; Time: 4 hrs
    Starting at Trean House, you'll be taking in Ballymagoraghy, Ballintooban and on to Kinnagoe Bay before looping back.
  • Start of trek to Mamore: Distance: 19 km; Time: 4-5 hrs
    Starting at Linsfort castle, you'll be taking in Leophin, the long road up to the gap, a breather t the Rusty Nail pub, a critical right turn at Clonmany Fire Centre then the homeward road via Pinch with further great views by Raghtin.
  • Start of trek to Raghtin More: Duration: 3.5-4 hours; Distance: 7km; Difficulty: moderate
    The beautiful 30 feet high Glenavon waterfall is followed by a steady climb to a rugged quartzite summit with memorable panoramas at over 1500 feet.