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Ireland

The best way to get around Ireland is by car. To get the most out of your trip to Ireland, we recommend renting a car. Ireland is not the most dog friendly country, but it is getting better with regards to dog friendly restaurants. We recommend two websites for searching for dog friendly places to eat: PawsFriendly and PetFriendlyDublin 

 

If you enter Ireland by ferry into Dublin, it is an excellent place to start your trip. We recommend the Stena Line ferry from Holyhead to Dublin which offers pet friendly cabins. You can find more information here on your pet friendly ferry options to enter Ireland. 


Dublin

 

There are some great parks in Dublin to visit with your dog.  Phoenix Park is one of Europe's largest enclosed urban parks, offering plenty of space for your dog to run and play. It's home to the Dublin Zoo (where dogs are not allowed) and is also home to the official residence of the President of Ireland (Áras an Uachtaráin).  St. Anne's Park is another beautiful public park with woodland areas, gardens, and a rose garden. Dogs are welcome, and you can enjoy a leisurely walk or have a picnic. There is even an enclosed dog park and a food market at the weekends.  St. Annes Park is also very close to Bull Island - a nature reserve and bird sanctuary located in Dublin Bay. You can walk your dog along the beach, known as Dollymount Strand, and enjoy the stunning views with your dog. 

Make sure to take a trip into Dublin city centre to visit the different pubs and cafes, and explore Dublin's history which stretches back over a thousand years. The city is a treasure trove of architectural wonders. From medieval castles and Georgian townhouses to Gothic cathedrals and modern landmarks, Dublin showcases a diverse range of architectural styles. Iconic sites include Dublin Castle, Christ Church Cathedral, St. Patrick's Cathedral, and the elegant Georgian squares of Merrion and Fitzwilliam. Make sure to stroll through the famous Temple Bar, which is known for its vibrant atmosphere and lively pubs. 

Making your way out of Dublin, you can explore the Dublin Mountains numerous hiking trails suitable for dogs. Explore places like the Hellfire Club or the Dublin Mountains Way, and enjoy the fresh air and scenic views. Check the specific trail regulations and keep your dog on a leash where required.

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Here we are outside Áras an Uachtaráin

Wicklow

The Wicklow Mountains provide a stunning backdrop for outdoor adventures, and fortunately, there are several dog-friendly activities to enjoy in this area. 

Start your day with a visit to Glendalough, a picturesque valley known for its monastic settlement and beautiful lakes. Take a hike along one of the many trails that wind through the valley, such as the Glendalough Upper Lake Trail or the Spinc and Glenealo Valley Loop. Dogs are welcome in the Glendalough area, but be sure to keep them on a leash and clean up after them. After your hike, find a scenic spot in the Wicklow Mountains to enjoy a picnic with your dog. There are plenty of beautiful locations where you can spread out a blanket and savour the natural beauty of the area while sharing a meal with your furry friend.

 

Head to Powerscourt Estate, located near Enniskerry, where you can explore the stunning gardens. Dogs are welcome in the gardens, but they need to be kept on a leash. Take a leisurely stroll through the formal gardens, Japanese gardens, and the tranquil woodland areas. The estate also has a pet-friendly terrace café where you can relax and enjoy a bite to eat.

 

Lough Tay is a stunning location that's worth a visit. It is locally known as the "Guinness Lake" due to its dark peaty waters. Take a drive to this scenic spot and enjoy a walk along the lakeshore with your dog. Capture some memorable photos of the dramatic landscape and the contrasting colours of the lake and the surrounding hills.​

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Lough Tay from above

Cork and the Ring of Kerry

Start your day in Cork City. Take a walk along the River Lee, explore the charming streets, and visit dog-friendly attractions like Fitzgerald Park or the Cork Heritage Park.​ Enjoy a stroll through the English Market, a historic covered food market that allows dogs on a leash. Browse the stalls and perhaps pick up some local treats. Visit Blackrock Castle and Observatory, where dogs are welcome in the outdoor areas. Take a walk around the castle grounds and enjoy views of the River Lee. Relax at one of Cork's many dog-friendly pubs or cafes, such as The Franciscan Well Brewery or The Oyster Tavern, where you can enjoy a meal or a pint with your furry friend.

After a good night's sleep, embark on a scenic drive along the Ring of Kerry, a 179-kilometer (111-mile) circular route that showcases some of Ireland's most breathtaking landscapes. You can stop at dog-friendly beaches along the way, such as Derrynane Beach or Rossbeigh Beach, where your dog can stretch their legs and enjoy the sand and sea. Killarney National Park, allows leashed dogs in certain areas. Explore the park's stunning lakes, mountains, and trails. Don't miss the iconic Torc Waterfall, where you and your dog can enjoy a refreshing break.

Take a break in the town of Killarney, known for its lively atmosphere. Explore the dog-friendly streets and enjoy a meal at one of the town's pet-friendly restaurants, such as Treyvaud's or The Porterhouse Gastropub.

 

While in Killarney, take a trip to the Killarney National Park, a stunning landscape of lakes, mountains, and woodlands. Leashed dogs are allowed in certain areas, so you can take your dog for a scenic walk along one of the park's many trails. Don't miss sights like Muckross House and Gardens or the peaceful shores of Lough Leane.

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The Old Head of Kinsale is a stunning and historically significant headland located near the town of Kinsale in County Cork, Ireland. The headland has witnessed numerous historical events, including the sinking of the RMS Lusitania by a German U-boat during World War I, which resulted in the loss of many lives. The area holds a memorial and offers information about the tragic event.

Dingle Peninsula 

The famous Slea Head Drive on the Dingle Peninsula is known for its breathtaking coastal views. Stop at dog-friendly beaches along the way, such as Inch Beach or Ventry Beach, where your dog can run and play in the sand. Make sure to explore Dingle Town too. Dingle is a charming coastal town with a dog-friendly atmosphere. Take a walk through the colourful streets, browse the local shops, and visit dog-friendly pubs and cafes. Don't miss a visit to Murphy's Ice Cream, where your dog can enjoy a refreshing treat of their own.

 

If you and your dog are up for a challenge, consider hiking Mount Brandon, the highest peak on the Dingle Peninsula. The stunning views from the summit are worth the effort, but be prepared with proper equipment, food, water and check weather conditions beforehand.

 

Take a boat trip from Dingle to Great Blasket Island, a deserted island known for its rugged beauty. Dogs are welcome on the boat, but keep in mind that the island has no facilities, so bring water and snacks for both you and your dog.

 

Visit the historic Gallarus Oratory, a well-preserved early Christian stone building on the Dingle Peninsula. Dogs are allowed in the surrounding area, so you can explore the site and learn about its fascinating history.

 

The Dingle Peninsula offers numerous walking trails, many of which are dog-friendly. Choose a trail that suits your dog's ability and enjoy the stunning coastal and mountainous scenery. The Dingle Way is a popular long-distance trail that covers a significant portion of the peninsula.

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The colourful buildings of Dingle 

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Getting an ice cream at Murphy's is essential

The Cliffs of Moher

The Cliffs of Moher are a must-visit attraction in County Clare, and dogs are welcome on the designated walking trails. Enjoy a scenic hike along the cliffs and take in the breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean. Keep your dog on a leash for safety, as the cliffs can be steep. On your way back to your accomodation, visit Doolin. Doolin is a vibrant village known for its traditional music and proximity to the Cliffs of Moher. Dogs are welcome in some outdoor areas and in some dog-friendly accommodations in the area. Explore the village, listen to live music in the pubs, and take in the friendly atmosphere.

 

While you are in Clare, check out Burren National Park where you can explore the unique karst landscape of the Burren National Park with your dog. Leashed dogs are allowed on the marked trails, allowing you to discover the limestone pavements, rare flora, and archaeological sites in this stunning natural area.

 

County Clare also boasts several beautiful beaches where dogs are welcome. Spanish Point, White Strand Miltown Malbay, and Fanore Beach are all dog-friendly and provide opportunities for your dog to play and run in the sand and surf. Remember to clean up after your pet and follow any specific regulations at each beach.

Loop Head Peninsula: Take a scenic drive along the Loop Head Peninsula, which offers stunning coastal views. Stop at Loop Head Lighthouse, where dogs are allowed on the grounds. Enjoy a walk along the cliffs and soak in the panoramic vistas of the Atlantic Ocean and the rugged coastline.

 

Visit Ennis - the capital of County Clare.  The historic town of Ennis welcomes dogs in many outdoor areas. Take a stroll through the town's charming streets and explore the shops, cafes, and traditional Irish pubs. Enjoy a meal at one of the dog-friendly restaurants with outdoor seating, such as Brogan's Bar & Restaurant or Rowan Tree Café Bar.

 

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The Cliffs of Moher

Galway and Connemara

Galway is a vibrant city known for its lively atmosphere and cultural charm. Take your dog for a stroll along the streets of Galway's Latin Quarter or along the Salthill Promenade. Many shops, cafes, and pubs in Galway have outdoor seating areas where dogs are welcome, so you can enjoy a meal or a drink with your furry companion. You can also take a boat trip from Galway to the Aran Islands, where dogs are allowed on board. 

Connemara National Park is a stunning natural area with mountains, lakes, and bogs. Dogs on a leash are allowed in the park, so you can enjoy leisurely walks together while taking in the breathtaking scenery. The Diamond Hill Loop is a popular trail that offers panoramic views of the Connemara landscape. Connemara is home to several dog-friendly beaches where your dog can enjoy a run and a swim. Dogs are allowed on the beautiful beaches of Dogs Bay and Gurteen Bay in Roundstone.  Many of the picturesque villages in Connemara are dog-friendly. Take a stroll through places like Clifden, Roundstone, or Letterfrack, and explore the local shops, cafes, and pubs. Connemara is also renowned for its scenic drives, and your dog can join you on these journeys. Take the Sky Road near Clifden, which offers stunning views of the coast and countryside. The Connemara Loop, a scenic driving route, allows you to explore the beauty of the region. 

Kylemore Abbey and Gardens is also a must see. While dogs are not allowed inside the historic Kylemore Abbey, they are welcome in the extensive gardens surrounding the abbey. Take a leisurely walk through the Victorian Walled Garden and the woodlands, enjoying the tranquil beauty of the area. 

On your way north, if the weather is nice and you have the time, detour to Achill Island for stunning scenery. You can visit the famous Keem Beach and you may spot some basking shark if you are lucky! 

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The Deserted Village on Achill Island (also known as Slievemore) is a collection of abandoned stone cottages that date back to the 19th century. It is believed that the village was once a thriving rural community, but it gradually became deserted due to economic changes and the impact of the Great Famine. Today, the village stands as a poignant reminder of Ireland's past.

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Tourmakeady Waterfall is situated in a scenic location surrounded by lush greenery and mountains. It is easily accessible from the village of Tourmakeady, which is located on the shores of Lough Mask. The waterfall can be reached by following signposts and a short walk from the designated parking area.

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Kylemore Abbey is a historic and picturesque attraction located in Connemara, County Galway, Ireland. It was originally built as a private residence in the late 19th century by Mitchell Henry, a wealthy doctor and politician. The stunning castle-like structure was constructed as a tribute to Mitchell's wife, Margaret, and it served as their family home. 

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Keem Beach is nestled in a picturesque horseshoe-shaped bay on the western side of Achill Island, offering stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and surrounding cliffs. The beach is known for its pristine white sands and crystal-clear turquoise waters, which make it a popular destination for locals and tourists alike.

Donegal 

Donegal is known for its beautiful beaches, and many of them are dog-friendly. Rossnowlagh Beach, located on the south coast of Donegal, is a popular choice for dog owners. Dogs are allowed off-leash on the beach, providing a great opportunity for them to run, play, and swim in the sea. 

 

Glenveagh National Park is a haven for nature lovers and their canine companions. Dogs on a leash are allowed in the park, allowing you to explore the scenic trails and enjoy the stunning landscapes, including mountains, lakes, and gardens. The park is home to the majestic Glenveagh Castle, but dogs are not allowed inside the castle itself.

 

Slieve League Cliffs located on the southwest coast of Donegal, boasts some of the highest sea cliffs in Europe. Dogs are allowed on the trails, so you can take your dog for a walk along the cliffs and enjoy the breathtaking views. Be cautious near the cliff edges and keep your dog on a leash for their safety.

 

Ards Forest Park is a dog-friendly park located on the northern coast of Donegal. Leashed dogs are welcome to explore the walking trails and enjoy the woodland scenery. The park also has a beautiful sandy beach where your dog can play and splash in the water.

 

Donegal Town is a charming town with a dog-friendly atmosphere. Take a leisurely walk through the town's streets, visit the ruins of Donegal Abbey, and enjoy the views of Donegal Bay. Many cafes, restaurants, and pubs in Donegal Town have outdoor seating areas where dogs are welcome, allowing you to relax and dine with your furry companion.

While you are in Donegal, make sure to visit Malin Head. Malin Head is the northernmost point of mainland Ireland and is located on the Inishowen Peninsula in County Donegal and marks the end (or beginning) of the famous Wild Atlantic Way. 

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Northern Ireland

Take a scenic drive along the stunning Causeway Coastal Route, which stretches from Derry to Belfast. There are several dog-friendly stops along the way, including the Giant's Causeway, Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge (dogs cannot cross the bridge itself but humans can take turns), and beautiful coastal towns like Portrush and Portstewart. Besides the Giant's Causeway, the Antrim Coastline has many other dog-friendly attractions. Explore the ruins of Dunluce Castle, wander along the beaches of Ballycastle or Whitepark Bay, and take in the views at Torr Head. You could also take a day trip to Rathlin Island, located off the coast of County Antrim. Dogs are allowed on the island, and you can explore its rugged coastline, spot wildlife, and visit attractions like the Rathlin West Light Seabird Centre.

 

The Mourne Mountains in County Down offer breathtaking landscapes and scenic hiking trails. Many of the trails are dog-friendly, such as the popular Slieve Donard hike. Remember to keep your dog on a leash and clean up after them.

Head to County Fermanagh to explore the beautiful Lough Erne and its surroundings. Go for walks along the lakeshore, visit the historic town of Enniskillen, or take a boat trip around the lakes. 

Northern Ireland has several National Trust properties that welcome dogs. Castle Ward, Mount Stewart, and Florence Court are just a few examples. Northern Ireland also has numerous coastal walks where you can enjoy stunning views with your dog. The North Down Coastal Path, Castle Espie to Comber Greenway, and Gortmore Point in County Derry are all dog-friendly options.

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Giant's Causeway

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Carrick a Rede rope bridge

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