The Wild Atlantic Way: top 10 hotels

By Sarah Moyles,

Winding its way along the west coast of Ireland, the Wild Atlantic Way is the longest defined coastal touring route in the world.

Stretching 1,500 miles from Donegal’s Inishowen Peninsula to the quaint fishing village of Kinsale in County Cork, the route is dotted with some of the country’s top hotels.

Whether you prefer a compact and cosy guesthouse or a luxury spa hotel, these are the perfect bases for visiting Ireland’s most impressive – and often overlooked – sites of natural beauty.


An Chúirt Gweedore Court, Gweedore

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Central to many of Donegal’s best natural attractions and known as a bastion of Gaelic heritage and culture, Gweedore (Gaoth Dobhair) is not to be missed.

Nestled at the heart of the parish and just a short drive from the coast is the stylish An Chúirt Gweedore Court Hotel & Health Club.

While the rooms here are all elegantly furnished, the real focus is the food: the hotel boasts an extensive menu of delicious meals made from locally-sourced ingredients.

Check out our foodie guide for the Wild Atlantic Way while you’re here.


Lough Eske Castle & Spa, Donegal Town

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After a long day on the road, it’s nice to relax with a bit of luxury – and it doesn’t get much more luxurious than Lough Eske Castle.

A five-star lakeside hotel, the castle is located on a private 43-acre estate and boasts its own spa and wellness centre. The castle itself dates to the 1400s and has links to the O’Donnell clan, the founding fathers of County Donegal.

What better way to explore more of the region’s heritage, while resting up for your onward journey?


The Glasshouse, Sligo

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If Ireland’s dramatic coastal scenery isn’t enough for you, why not check into Sligo’s most dramatic building – the Glasshouse hotel.

Housed in a dynamic glass-fronted building shaped like a ship in harbour, the Glasshouse has all the modern design you’d expect: contemporary furnishings, bright colours and two lively bars.

Basically, this hotel is the perfect urban splash on your coastal odyssey!


Belleek Castle, Ballina

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If you’re looking for some romance on your road trip, Belleek Castle may be the place for you.

Set among sweeping grounds, the hotel boasts an elegant interior, with rustic fireplaces, traditional wooden finishes and expansive banquet halls, which make it a popular choice for weddings.

Located just outside Ballina, Belleek Castle is close to Enniscrone beach and Downpatrick Head – two of the region’s best landmarks.


Renvyle House, Connemara

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The height of rustic charm, Renvyle House Hotel is located on the edge of the coast of Connemara, in County Galway.

Built in the 1920s, the interior of the hotel has been beautifully preserved, offering visitors traditional regional comfort.

With many of the hotel’s furnishings made locally, Renvyle House Hotel is the best choice for those seeking a taste of rural Ireland.


Doolin Hotel, Doolin

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A stone’s throw from the Cliffs of Moher, Doolin Hotel offers its guests a slice of chic sophistication against the backdrop Ireland’s best natural scenery.

Found in the heart of Doolin village, the 4-star hotel is just a short walk from a variety of local shops so you can get a feel of your surroundings.

With herbs grown on-site and its own microbrewery, the hotel offers truly unique food and drink in an elegant setting – why not go for a drink in the traditional Fitzpatrick’s Bar?


Dingle Skellig Hotel

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One of the best spa hotels in Kerry, this is an ideal base for your time along the most westerly peninsula in Europe.

To make the most of the views, stay in the Eask Suite, a stunning south-facing room that boasts its own sitting room, private balcony and stand-alone bath..

The Peninsula Spa looks out over Dingle Harbour and Bay, featuring a luxury relaxation suite, eucalyptus steam room, Finnish sauna and spacious outdoor hot tub.


Park Hotel, Kenmare

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Situated on the idyllic Kenmare Bay, this Victorian landmark is the perfect place for a stylish break.

Dating from 1897 and occupying a 12-acre site of expansive lawns and woodlands, the Park Hotel is a landmark in itself.

The hotel is close to the quaint heritage town of Kenmare, but with an 18-hole golf course and a luxury spa, there’s plenty to keep you busy without ever leaving the grounds.


The Maritime, Bantry

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With stylish sea-facing rooms and chic penthouse suites with views of the ocean, the Maritime offers guests a dose of luxury – right on the water’s edge.

Just a short drive from both Dursey Island and Mizen Head, traditionally the last sight of Ireland for many Irish emigrants heading to America, the hotel makes a great stay on the Wild Atlantic Way.

For some me-time before you head back on the road, the spa boasts a 19 metre pool, Jacuzzi, sauna, steam room and luxury treatment rooms that overlook the picturesque coves and sea.


Trident, Kinsale

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Situated right on Kinsale’s picturesque harbour at the mouth of the River Bandon, Trident hotel makes for the perfect end to an incredible journey.

Featuring several wining and dining options, including the excellent Pier One restaurant overlooking the harbour, as well as a traditional tavern, a lounge and a stylish bar, there are plenty of ways to relax after a long trip.

A short walk from Kinsale’s charming shops, Trident is also perfectly placed to explore one of County Cork’s treasures.