7 Reasons to Explore Roscommon
Roscommon, based in the west of Ireland, is a county rich in heritage, historical finds, food, culture, outdoor activities and, most importantly, good craic! The county seems to have something for everyone, whether it is a solo traveller looking to get away from it all, a couple needing some quality time together, or a family wanting a change of scenery. Whatever the reason for travelling, Roscommon is sure to be a memorable and enjoyable experience. With all this in mind, below are seven things to do on a visit to Roscommon.
1 Historic Houses
Roscommon has four incredible historic houses that are open to the public to enjoy. These include Clonalis House in Castle Rea, Castlecoote House in Castlecoote, King House in Boyle and Strokestown House in Strokestown. Each of these houses has something special about it – from the beautiful Georgian exterior of Castlecoot House and its views out over the River Suck to Clonalis House and its heritage of Irish High Kings. There is so much to explore and ponder over on a walk around the houses and their grounds. At some, you might even imagine that you have stepped back in time.
2 Foodie Finds
A visit to Roscommon is not complete without tasting some of the much-talked-about Roscommon Lamb. An experience of the county’s lamb could be part of a Sunday lunch at a cosy lakeside pub, or at a restaurant in one of Roscommon’s idyllic towns. There is then the annual Lamb Festival in Roscommon in May, an annual event celebrating Roscommon Lamb with a series of family-friendly activities and special menus at restaurants and eateries across the county. In addition to its lamb, there are numerous restaurants where visitors can indulge in other local favourites, as well as adventurous dishes prepared by chefs that have travelled the world and returned to their beloved Roscommon.
3 At One With Nature
There are plenty of opportunities in Roscommon to get out into the outdoors and explore the county’s wonderful landscape. An incredible experience is the Green Heartlands Cycle Route, a route taking cyclists along Lough Ree and among many of Roscommon’s beautiful villages. At Shannonbridge, there is an opportunity to take a self-guided tour of the Napoleonic fortifications that are situated along the river. Going one step further, visitors can enjoy a boat trip from Shannonbridge to Clonmacnoise Monastery where more historic treasures await.
4 Lovely Lakes
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Although landlocked, Roscommon still affords stunning waters via its lakes spread across the county. Various trails are available around the lakes to enable visitors to make the most of the water and beautiful surroundings. This includes Lough Key Forest Park Sli Loop, a trail that takes walkers around the lake, along forest trails, and to historical features within the 19th-Century park, as well as gifting walkers with magnificent views out over Lough Key Castle. There is also the spectacular Arigna Miner’s Way and Historical Trail, a trail taking walkers on the same route miners would have taken to the Arigna Mines, a mining industry that continued into the early 1900s. The trail passes breathtaking sights such as Bricklieve & Arigna Mountains, as well as the historic Carrowkeel Megalithic tombs.
5 The Craic
Roscommon is packed full of great pubs where ‘the craic’ is sure to be mighty. Across its many villages and towns are pubs playing live traditional music and filling up with fun-loving locals and visitors. As the birthplace of Irish traditional music legends Matt Molloy of The Chieftains and legendary bodhrán player Frank McGann, Roscommon continues to produce great music through its different pubs and festivals. Make sure to make the most of the area’s talent and craic-filled pubs when visiting.
6 Shopping Fix
In addition to normal shopping, Roscommon has an array of shops and stalls offering locally crafted products such as jewellery, pottery and artisan foods. For instance, there is The Courtyard Market, a craft market held every Saturday in the town of Boyle, stocking all sorts of local produce and handmade goods. It is shopping like this that provides the perfect opportunity to find a unique gift or to stock up on wholesome food and drink.
7 Get Active
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In addition to the many walks available across Roscommon, there are various activities and sports that visitors participate in. This could include a Segway ride at Lough Key Forest, a water-based activity along the River Shannon, or one of the outdoor pursuits available at Lough Gara.
Looking for somewhere to stay on a trip to Roscommon? Check out the latest hotel deals to guarantee a few days to explore this wonderful part of Ireland.
Have you any additional tips for THINGS TO DO in Roscommon?
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