Picture of Conamara agus oileáin

Conamara agus oileáin

Top Must-Do Drives in Connemara

Connemara has without a doubt, the best scenic driving routes in all of Ireland! Okay, we may be biased, but there are some pretty amazing roads in this part of the country.

Filled with breathtaking scenery, the landscape changes from milky blue sea views, to fields of carpeted green, eventually transforming into dramatic misty mountains, rising all around. 

This year, why not veer off the main roads to discover Connemara’s most scenic drives, with these picturesque routes.



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An obvious one, but it had to get a mention! The Sky Road drive is a must-do when in Connemara!

Located in Clifden, this popular route  takes you up among the hills treating drivers to panoramic Clifden Bay and its offshore islands, Inishturk and Turbot. Part of the Wild Atlantic Way, the Sky Road peninsula juts out into the Atlantic ocean against the backdrop of the 12 Bens Mountain Range.

 The drive is a steep but short ascent, lasting roughly 15km, taking roughly half an hour to complete, depending on how many pictures you want to take!




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This one’s for those who want a bit more of an adventure! Stretching out over 160km, this route begins in Clifden, passing through Ballyconneely, Roundstone, Derryclare and on to Inagh Valley.

The Inagh Valley road winds its way through majestic heather-covered mountains and around picturesque lakes. The vista is ever-changing from day to day as the slightest change in weather is reflected beautifully in the lakes and mountains.

Continue through the valley until you meet the N59, take a sharp right then turn left signposted Rossroe. This journey along the south side of Killary Harbour is one of the best drives in Connemara and is part of the Wild Atlantic Way route. 


It is possible to drive this route clockwise or anti-clockwise, but we prefer to begin at the famous Maam Cross, turn right and start driving north. Explore the rugged West as you drive through sheep-flecked mountains, ancient ruins and lakes on this stunning drive!

At Maam Bridge, take another right, and drive along by Lough Corrib. Continue through the lively village Cornamona and take in the beautiful views until you reach the village of Clonbur. 

 Briefly cross the Mayo border to the picturesque village Congm where the film The Quiet Man was filmed. The ruins of Ross Errily Abbey are on the right by the Galway/Mayo boundary. From here, return to Galway through Cross, past Glencorrib.



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The drive from Leenane to Drummin via Doo Lough provides a once-in-a-lifetime roadtrip experience like no other through the rugged Connemara wilderness!

The road, winds along the Wild Atlantic Way driving route, meandering its way in spectacular fashion along the northern side of Killary Fjord, through a series of valleys between the peaks of Ben Creggan and Ben Gorm

The landscape is phenomenal, with mauve mountains towering around on all sides as you travel north. 



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This surreal coastal route explores the vast, spectacularly beautiful Connemara coast, and is advisable to complete it over two days, with an overnight stay halfway.

Take the R336 from Galway city. You will pass Silverstrand Beach in Barna, Gurbo and Spiddal. Continue on, you will reach the turnoff for Rossaveal,  a beautiful fishing village where the port for the Aran Islands is situated. 

Here, take the R343 to Carraroe, where the Coral Strand is situated, another blue flag beach indicating it is safe to swim. Continue south around the Iorras Aithneach peninsula taking in spectacular views of Galway Bay. 

Next take the turnoff for the R342, and head south towards Roundstone and take a dip in Dog’s Bay. Head on to Ballyconneely, another beautiful village with an even better beach.

Take the same road back to the N59 and head north Letterfrack and take the Connemara loop around Renvyle. Continue on the Connemara Loop to Killary Harbour, offering spectacular views of Killary Fjord.

Click here for a more detailed itinerary of this scenic drive.

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