The Connemara National Park gives you access to one of the most beautiful natural parks in Ireland. Stretching over 2,000 hectares, the park brings together nature and wildlife of breathtaking beauty. The imposing mountains offer a panorama of desolate red heathland, peat bogs, rolling green plains, and forests surrounded by huge lakes… In short: nature in its purest state: ideal for a total change of scenery!
Connemara is undoubtedly the most touristic park in Ireland! Every year, thousands of travellers come here to explore its wide open spaces, breathe its invigorating air, and enjoy the sublime views.
It must be said that the Park is a little marvel in itself: a real paradise for walkers and nature lovers.
We’re not going to lie to you: the ideal is to have your own car on site. Whether it’s your own, or a rental, it will allow you more flexibility than the bus: few time constraints, the possibility to take breaks on the road, the possibility to travel a little bit busier … In short, the freedom to explore Connemara according to your own wishes and choices.
You will then have 2 choices to reach Connemara and discover it:
Follow the N59 towards Clifden (the road is a loop of about 90km, which goes around the Park).
follow the N59 first, then follow the R344: an even more beautiful road but sometimes narrower and uncomfortable. This road will take you close to the Connemara lakes, and will offer some of the most beautiful views of the park.
Note for walkers that there is a specially designed car park not far from Letterfrack. It is small and may be difficult to park in the high season. Our advice: do not hesitate to go there early in the morning, or alternatively, park in the centre of Letterfrack. There are more places to park!
If you don’t have a choice, then the bus can be an alternative. You will have to reach Letterfrack, 500 meters from the park entrance, where the main station that circles the National Park is located.
Please note: the number of buses varies according to the season. Don’t hesitate to ask beforehand: sometimes there are no more than 2 buses per day! Might as well not miss them!
Another alternative: leave from Clifden, where there are more connections to the park.
Let’s be clear: Connemara Park is primarily for walkers and hikers. Don’t think for a moment that you can explore the wide open spaces of Ireland from your car: the scenery seen from the road is exceptional, but you’ll be depriving yourself of much more if you refuse to venture out on the local trails!
This is why access to the Park is mainly on foot.
For the amateurs, you should know that the Park offers 3 types of hiking trails.
All of them start from the Visitor Centre, at the entrance to the Park, and extend over varying distances and levels of difficulty. Among these 3 recommended circuits, you will have the choice between :
The park is open all year round, with no timetables. Free: it allows you to have a great day out for less money!
However, we recommend that you go there when the climate is not too uncertain. So, yes, we are in Ireland, and Irish people like to say that the weather is nice several times a day in the country.
But once again, it makes sense to avoid days of storms, thunderstorms, and high winds. Avoid walking there at night as well: these are scenarios that can be dangerous.
We therefore advise you to go there in good weather (or in a fine drizzle: Connemara has a crazy charm even when it rains!). Also avoid the high season, when the circuits are saturated by walkers.
Our advice: go early in the morning! You will avoid the flood of tourists!