Ireland is well known as one of the most romantic spots in the world and recent surveys have shown that we are not too shabby when it comes to the old romancing. Here in An Óige we have couples that first met in our hostels and they now have grandchildren staying in our hostels. So you could say that we know a think or two about the subject of romance. These are our 10 recommended romantic spots, from the stunning Cliffs of Moher to a guaranteed marriage in a year thanks to a metal man on top of a rock, with lots of beautiful places in between. Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, so what better way to surprise your loved one than with a romantic Irish trip?
Most romantic coastal spots
1) Being an island, we have more than our fair share of sandy stretches, secluded coves and wild cliffs where a fellow can get down on one knee without having the whole world looking at him. If a dramatic backdrop is what you are looking for, the Cliffs of Moher offer miles of cliffs that will live on in the memory for years to come. They’re only down the road from our Burren Hostel and Rowan Tree Hostel.
2) If you want another coastal spot, Kilmakeder Church in the Dingle Peninsula has an ancient ogham stone with a hole in the top. In olden days, two fingers that touched through the hole were considered joined for life. Check this place out while staying in Dunquin Hostel.
Most romantic lakeland spots
3) There is something about a large still expanse of water that gets us all romantic. Some say they mirror the longings of the soul. Others say it is the tranquil contrast between water and greenery. Still others say it is the fishing. When it comes to lakes, Killarney is up there as a world beater and there is no better spot to view the lakes than at the lovely named Ladies View. It is a bit of a trek from our Killarney and Black Valley Hostels but let’s be honest, we don’t mind a good hike. Fittingly, the second biggest lake in Ireland, Lough Corrib is situated in between Sleepzone Galway and the Old Mill Westport. Even closer to it is our Cong Hostel, where the romance between John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara happened “The Quiet Man”.
Most romantic cities
4) We couldn’t mention romance without mentioning Dublin. Halfpenny Bridge is among our favourite places. The charming Halfpenny Bridge may not have many lovelocks on it anymore, but you can certainly choose it for its romantic architecture and the views it gives over Liffey and the center of Dublin:
5) As a Bonus, we’ll add Cork as well with its beautiful Blackrock Castle. A lot of weddings happen there and it also has a wonderful observatory centre, if you’re interested in getting a romantic view of the stars. The friendliness of Cork will make you feel like home in our Cork International Hostel.
Most romantic county
6) We’re just going to leave you decide why Co. Kerry, with the famous Dingle Peninsula, is definitely one of the most romantic spots you can find around Ireland. The views of the ocean from our Dun Chaoin Hostel, just beyond the cozy Dingle town, will give you the privacy you need for that special moment.
Most romantic castle
7) If you want a romantic and mostly medieval style escape for that perfect moment, we recommend Kilruddery and Glenveagh. The gardens at Kilruddery House are from the 17th century and they are one of the very few remaining around here in that style. Being only 20 minutes away from Knockree Hostel and its beautiful honeymoon suite, where last year alone there were 5 wedding receptions held. We can’t think of a more romantic place, actually. But then again, we like all of them so we’ll let you decide.
8) Situated in the Glenveagh National Park, the Glenveagh castle is definitely a special spot for romantic moments. Just look at the photo below, you can certainly feel transported back to the days of yore. And if you stay at our Errigal Hostel just 30 minutes away, with the beautiful local music in the background, you’re going to have a wonderful time.
Most romantic… adventure
9) Are you and your loved one into surfing? Hiking? Biking? In Ireland we have everything you need. If surfing would be the most romantic adventure for you, then you can go out to Tramore near Waterford. Miles and miles of sandy beaches give way to the best spot for long walks, a lively night life and of course a great spot for surfing. Legend says that if you hop barefoot around the base of the Metal Man in Tramore three times you should be married within the year. Sounds reasonable, right? With our Beach Haven Hostel near by, nothing can go wrong.
10) Kayaking in Cape Clear with our Craic’n’Crash team. How can’t you find that romantic?
Have you got any other suggestions or stories for romantic Ireland? Let us know in the comment section!