While a break by the seaside may be popular for most in summer, Ireland’s Lakelands or Loughs (the traditional Irish name for a lake) make for an exciting and unique adventure to some of Ireland’s most hidden spots. Whether you prefer being out on the lakes or embracing their beauty from afar, the Irish Lakelands offer something for everyone.
Take a look below at the most stunning lakes across Ireland and start planning your lakeland adventure!
Lough Allen, County LEITRIM
Lough Allen is accessible through the upper narrow part of the Shannon on a small boat, creating a secret feel to this lake experience. In the Leitrim countryside, on the banks of Lough Allen, lies the Cleighran More, a magical site where the water runs orange.
After a sail along the lough, anchor up at Carrick-on-Shannon and be inspired by our 48-Hour Guide to the largest town in Leitrim.
View the latest hotel deals in Carrick-on-Shannon and enjoy the beauty of Lough Allen’s scenery.
Lough Derg, cOUNTY Tipperary, cLARE AND gALWAY
This long, narrow lake is the third largest in Ireland. The lower end of the lough can be a great place for angling sea trout, salmon and pike. Around this grand lake located between the counties of Clare, Tipperary and Galway, you will find wonderful places to stay, endless activities, heritage and culture ready to be explored.
Featured in our 10 Reasons to visit Tipperary, Lough Derg is a great place to try out water sports such as stand-up paddling and canoeing. If you prefer to stay on land, you are surrounded by some of the best walking routes in Ireland. Trekking around the outside of the lake, you can sample the most beautiful views and nearby restaurants with menus including fresh fish caught on the lake.
Planning to visit Lough Derg? Check out the latest hotel deals in Tipperary and embrace the rugged landscape.
Lough Ree, County Westmeath
Lough Ree is positioned at the very peaceful centre of Ireland. You can head out on the lough in a wooden replica of a Viking knarr for a truly unique sailing experience. While passing under the famous railway bridge, enjoy your guide telling you Viking tales of the Lakelands. It will feel like a mystical adventure!
While in the Athlone area, stop by one of the oldest pubs in Ireland, Sean’s Bar, supposedly dating back to 900 AD.
Planning a trip to Lough Ree? View the latest hotel deals in Athlone and start planning your Viking-esque adventure!
Lough Erne, County Fermanagh
The best way to explore Fermanagh’s beautiful unspoilt countryside is along Lough Erne. The most relaxing way to do this is a cruise from outside Lisnaskea town where you can float along, soaking in the scenery.
Crom Estate on the calm and slow-flowing Upper Lough Erne is perfect for hiring canoes and boats and spotting some wildlife along the way. Our 48 Hour Guide to Fermanagh will inspire you with other activities to do while in the area.
View the latest deals for hotels in Fermanagh and book your holiday on the Lakelands today.
LOUGH KEY, County ROSCOMMON
Located in northwest of County Roscommon, Lough Key offers visitors a dramatic landscape with nature trails, cycling tours and fishing. Take a boat out to Castle Island and explore the famous McDermott’s Castle, named after a King who lived in there in the 1100s. If you’re travelling with the family, then make a stop at the Woodland Segway Tour at Lough Key Forest Park for a fun group activity.
Explore our driving route of the Irish Lakelands and discover its undeniable beauty for yourself.