Fanad, Co. Donegal

The first area which we promoted was Fanad, Co. Donegal.

Fanad is a picturesque, rural countryside area in North Donegal. It is known for it's beautiful coastal scenery, beaches and for having some of the friendliest locals in all of Ireland! While Fanad is literally the perfect place to 'escape from it all' do not think that you will be left out in the wild, untamed countryside, as Fanad also has a booming local tourism sector and is almost over-run with the wide variety of services and amenities in the area. Whether you're looking for a romantic getaway with your other half, an idylic family holiday or a mad time to remember - Fanad will suit you perfectly. Some of the more, well-known attractions in Fanad include: The Fanad Lighthouse; The Great Arch; Sarah's Restaurant & The Store Bar, Portsalon; Rockhill Holiday Park; and of course not to forget Ballymastocker Bay, which is widely accepted as the second most beautiful beach in the whole world!!

For more details on all the attractions in Fanad simply scroll down. All of the attractions which are listed, are grouped under similar headings such as: Restaurants, Pubs, Self-Catering Cottages, Shops, Craft Shops, Hair Salons, Family Activities,  and Things to see.

Things to See

Fanad Lighthouse is Fanad's proudest possession. It is located at Fanad Head, the second most northerly point in Fanad. It is an extremely majestic site, through both it's cliff location and it's intricate architecture. There is rarely a summer evening in Fanad when you wouldn't find a family remarking on the Lighthouse's superiority. There is also a beach nearby.

The Harry Blaney Bridge is a newly constructed attraction which links the communities of Fanad and Carrigart and is a truly mind-blowing site. It is well-worth a visit, and if you ever feel that you need a change from Fanad (unlikely!) then you can simply cross the bridge and travel to Carrigart, where there is also a wide variety of services. The entrance roads to the bridge have also been approved for re-development so be prepared for top class roads aswell.

The Great Arch is one of the most undiscovered attractions in Fanad. As you can see it is a really beautiful site and it would be a shame to leave Fanad without seeing it. While it may be located in a slightly difficult to navigate area, in Pollaid near Fanad Head, if you ask some of the many friendly locals they'll be sure to help you to find it!!

Fanad's beaches are among the most beautiful in all of Ireland. Particularly Ballymastocker Beach which was voted as the second most beautiful beach in the whole world!! Other fantastic beaches include Drumnacraig Beach, Doaghbeg Beach, Portsalon Beach (Blue Flag), and Ballyhiernan Bay. All of which are safe for activities. An enjoyable day out for the family is guaranteed.

Family Activities

Portsalon Golf Course offers golfers an opportunity to play golf on an unspoiled, natural links land, surrounded by sandy beaches on the shores of Lough Swilly. Visitors are treated to a classic links experience that will be certain to flood their senses and make them want to come back again and again. Tel: 074 9159459. Email: Website:

Adventure One Surf School is North Donegal's leading ISA approved surf school. It is located on beautiful Ballyhiernan Bay, Fanad and teaches people from complete beginners up to advanced level, age 8 upwards. The school is open from March 17th- November 30th, 7 days a week! To book a lesson with us please contact us on: Tel: 086 1931747. Email: or see our website

Meadows Trout Fishery: Are you a keen fisher? or a complete beginner? Regardless come along and enjoy a day out at the Meadows Trout Fishery, Cloughfin, Rossnakill. It has a rainbow trout fishery to suit all anglers, but specialises in families and younger groups. Tel: 086 8047516. Email: Or click here for more details.

Eelburn Caravan & Camping Park and Pitch & Putt: Caravans available for rent and the pitch and putt course is perfect for novices with no experience at golfing or pitch and putt. It is situated in Ballyhiernan Bay, in the sand dunes and is close to local pubs, shops, restaurants and other amenities. Tel: 074 9159614.

Rossnakill Tourism & Activity Centre: Located in Rossnakill with a fully-equipped gym for both members an non-members. Birthday parties catered for, sports hall and meeting rooms available to hire. Male & Female changing rooms with showers. Open Mon-Thurs: 9am-1pm and 5pm-10pm. Fri: 9am-1pm and 5pm-9pm. Sat 2pm-6pm. Tel: 074 9192926


Walking/Hillwalking: Fanad is well-known for its scenic, peaceful walks along the coast of Lough Swilly. It's rugged, hillside landscape provides a perfect atmosphere to relax and unwind. There's a wide variety of walks to suit everyone, both experienced and less experienced. More details of some of the more well-known walks in Fanad can be found by clicking this link. Please remember that if the walks are on private land then you must get permission to walk the land, and leave the the ground in the same condition that you found it i.e. no littering and closing all gates/fences behind you.

Birdwatching: The Fanad coastline is home to one of the rarest species of European bird: Columbia Livia, commonly known as the European Rock Dove which is the ancient ancestor of the modern day racing pigeon. If you fancy a challenge, trying to find one could be just what you're looking for.

The Fanad Scenic Drive: The Fanad Peninsula scenic tour is a 72km circuit of the area, which is well sign-posted and a splendid drive. As the road rises around Knockalla Mountain enjoy the breathtaking views across Lough Swilly. Below you is Ballmastocker Bay bedecked with a trilogy of golden beaches and punctuated by fingers of grassy dunes. Portsalon lies across the bay.

Local Crafts:

Curlew Café & Crafts: Quaint little café located in Kerrykeel. Experience some of the typical delicacies of the Fanad area especially home cooking and baking. All baking is done using locally sourced organic products. Nuala, your host, will be sure to entertain you with her stories & chat!! Telephone: 074 9150998. Email: Or contact them on facebook.

O'Kanes of Kerrykeel: For the finest local crafts around! Come and get a souvenir which will help you to remember your time in Fanad. There is also a wide range of furniture, gifts, kitchenware, fishing tackle and much, much more. Tel: 074 9150879. Email:

Gallagher's of Rossnakill: Local shop and post office with some local souvenirs and gifts as well as a wide variety of local crafts. The shop is located in the old-style village of Rossnakill. Tel: 074 9159003.


Local Shops:

O'Doherty's: Located in one of the less well-known parts of Fanad in Doaghbeg, is O'Doherty's shop which has been open since the 19th Century. If you have any queries regarding the local area come here and ask and you're sure not to be disappointed. Also top up your car with petrol/diesel, treat yourself to some sweets/drinks or fill your fridge with fresh food.  Tel: 074 9159207.

Clinton's of Tamney: Fuel, petrol station and a fully functioning hot food deli. You can also rent DVD's for the night. Also friendly staff who will provide plenty of Fanadian craic. Tel: 074 9159508


Better Buys: Located in Kerrykeel, it almost acts as a tourist information office for the Northern Part of Fanad. It's open every day from 9am-9pm. Tel: 074 9150004.

Shiels' Shop: Located in Fanavolty. It provides everything a shop would typically provide as well as call credit and lotto. Tel: 074 9159236.

Hair & Beauty:

Jacinta's Hair Salon: Which is located in Kerrykeel. There is plenty of special offers and early and late appointments can be arranged. Tel: 074 9150922 or 086 8039102 for bookings.


Mary B's Beauty Salon: At Mary B's, Bridgetown, Kerrykeel, you will enjoy an unforgettable experience. A wide range of treatments are available including waxing, make-up, tanning, facials, tanning, manicures, pedicures and massages. Early and late appointments can be arranged. Tel: 085 7560624, Email: or go online to:


Rockhill Holiday Park: Rockhill Holiay Park offers log cabins & mobile homes for sale or for rent. Onsite facilities include floodlight 7 aside football pitch & tennis court, watersports, team building activities & birthday parties. There are also free summer camps for your child to partake in!! More details on their website. Tel: 074 9150012, email: or go online to:

Doaghbeg Cottage: Doaghbeg Cottage is located in Doaghbeg and provides self-catering accommodation for up to 7 people. It is a newly renovated, roomy, well-equipped house in a scenic rural area with access to beaches, golf courses etc. Pets are welcome. Telephone: 074 9124307 /086 8595502 or Email: for bookings and more information.

The Great Arch Cottage: This is a wonderful cottage which sleeps 8 people, with stunning panoramic views in the spectacular setting of Doaghbeg. Near to sandy beaches, excellent golf courses, pubs and restaurants. Hill walking, fishing and water sports also close by. Tel: 0044 02894432362 / 0044 07702834405 or email: for more information.


Sarah's Restaurant & Take-away is situated on the pier in Portsalon in a seaside area with stunning views of Lough Swilly, wonderful food, welcoming staff and a friendly atmosphere. You will want to come back to this restaurant again and again. Tel: 074 9159135. Website: Email:

Portsalon Golf Club Bar & Restaurant: Located in Portsalon. Caters for small parties etc. Snack menu & á la carte menu. Enjoy your meal while watching the golfers enjoying themselves on the course!! Tel: 074 9159107.


Ripple's Restaurant: Located in Kerrykeel offering quality food along the shores of Mulroy Bay specialising in seafood dishes and fresh fish. You could say that this 'where food matters'. It is open 7 days a week which includes Sunday Lunches. Tel: 074 9150110, Email: or go online to



The Store's Bar: Olde world bar located in the fantastic village of Portsalon! Come along and enjoy the craic in the bar and the banter in the lounge. With weekly live entertainment and live sporting events on the big screen; the stores bar is ideal for meeting up with friends in a casual, relaxed manner. Tel: 074 9159107, Email: or go online to:

The Lighthouse Tavern: Located at Fanad Head, near the lighthouse, it is an ideal place to spend a few hours learning about the history of this beautiful area of Fanad and to exchange a few stories!! There is a good atmosphere and an abundance of friendly locals as well as plenty of traditional Irish craic. Tel: 074 9159212.

The Village Inn: An 'Award Winning Pub' which is situated in the picturesque village of Kerrykeel. Complete with bar-food, an off-licence & a take-away. The Pub is renowned for it's great food, friendly atmosphere and lively entertainment. Free Internet Access & Regular Live Music. Tel: 074 9150062.


Paddy Jack's Bar, Restaurant & Take-Away: Live music, lively atmosphere, great food and nice people. It is situated in Kerrykeel. Most importantly the Guinness is great!! The Take-away is renowned for it's fresh battered fish and other hot dishes. Tel: 074 9150939.


The Atlantic House: Located in the fishing village of Rinboy, with live music, good atmosphere and bar food on request. It is closely situated to Ballyhiernan Bay, which is widely accepted as 'the most undiscovered beach in Fanad'. Tel: 074 9159705 / 074 9159009.


Credit Union:

Swilly Mulroy Credit Union: Kerrykeel. Serving the financial needs of it's members for over 25 years; now and into the future.  Tel: 074 9163300 (Milford), 074 9150188 (Kerrykeel), 074 9158700 (Rathmullan). Email: or go online to


If you have any queries regarding any of the attractions and businesses in Fanad, please get in contact with either the businesses themselves using the contact details above or with the Infochures Team, who will also be happy to help.


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