Carndonagh (Carn Domhnach in Irish), one of the main towns of the picturesque Inishowen peninsula in County Donegal is the ideal base for exploring all that Northern Ireland has to offer whilst on a vacation in Ireland.

The town is a short distance from Malin Head which is the most northerly point of the entire island of Ireland and an important fishing port. Due to its central location in Inishowen, Carndonagh is within a short driving distance to many beautiful sandy beaches such as Lagg and the Five Fingers Strand in Malin, Culdaff, Pollan Bay, Tullagh and Kinnegoe Bay.

Donagh Cross, CarndonaghCarndonagh is the site of the Donagh Cross, a rare ancient relic that belonged to an early Christian monastery that is reputed to have been founded by St. Patrick in 442AD. The Donagh Cross which itself dates from the 8th Century is a popular tourist spot especially for those interested in ancient Irish history.The meaning of the original Irish name, Carn Domhnach, is the burial mound of the church. The town is laid out around a central diamond which was designed by a local architect, Gary Doherty and is where four roads meet from North, South East and West. The imposing and magnificent Catholic Church sits high in the centre of the town overlooking Trawbreaga Bay and can be seen from miles around. Each stone for the granite-built building was hand carved and laid by master Stone masons from all over the country. The location also provides a good vantage point of the surrounding countryside.


Getting to Carndonagh

  • City of Derry Airport is a short 30 mins drive from Carndonagh
  • Belfast International Airport and George Best Belfast City Airport are 1.5 hours drive from Carndonagh
  • Bus Eireann and Ulsterbus provide services all over Ireland from Derry City Centre
  • John McGinley provides an excellent daily coach service to and from Dublin City Centre and Dublin Airport (leaves and arrives at Diamond)
  • Local bus companies provide service to other local towns and villages and to Derry City Centre – Lough Swilly Bus Company and North West Busways

Local ActivitiesTrawbreaga Bay, Carndonagh

  • For Golf Vacations in Ireland, golf is an extremely popular pastime with locals and it’s easy to see why. Carndonagh is within a short drive of many fine golf courses, the most famous of which is Ballyliffin Golf Club. Ballyliffin is home to 2 championship 18-hole courses, “The Old Course” and “Glashedy Links”. A former host of The Ladies’ Irish Open, Ballyliffin Golf Club was host of The Irish Seniors Open (June 20th – 22nd 2008) which was competed for by many well loved and famous European golfers and won by Juan Quiros of Spain who beat Des Smyth by one stroke on the final hole of the final day.
  • Members and visitors enjoy excellent facilities in the recently constructed clubhouse.
  • Other golf courses in the area are located in Redcastle, Greencastle, Buncrana and Derry.
  • Horse Riding – Malin Town.
  • Angling, walking and cycling.
  • Hill walking on nearby Slieve Sneacht.
  • Shopping – Major shopping areas within close proximity to Carndonagh are Derry and Letterkenny, both of which have all major Irish and UK high street stores.
  • Other activities include Irish dancing, modern dance, speech & drama, scouts, music, Inishowen Gospel Choir, Inishowen Carnival Group.


Carndonagh is also well known for its pubs which draw crowds from the town and other surrounding areas.A quiz night takes place each Thursday at The Glen Bar and live music featuring local acts can be enjoyed at the weekends in The Arch Inn and The Persian Bar. There is also a nightclub (Tul na Ri) on the outskirts of the town which is very popular with the locals and visitors.

Discovering Ireland Vacation recommended accommodation

Carndonagh is home to many Bed & Breakfasts
while we also recommend the Carlton Redcastle Hotel in nearby Redcastle


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