These may no longer be available but of course if goes without saying,
do not block or cause a nuisance to anyone and do check with owners where
there are any obvious ones. Leave nothing behind except your tyre marks.
Bear in mind our route had been Pembroke - Rosslare and we took a route
clockwise around Ireland, so these spots are following in that direction
- you will need a map, I didn't have GPS so can't give these details.
Perhaps someone else will be able to add these later.
1 We were told of a spot at Kilmore Quay, which
would have been a spot to use, but we didn't actually need this one, as
we had stopped at St Margaret's Caravan Site straight from the ferry,
so were further along when we wished to halt for the night. There are
toilets here and I was told a top but didn't actually see it myself.
2 Dunbrattin Head - no signs to say you cannot
park, but there were people around looking. No facilities
3 Galtee Castle Woods - up to the right of the
road, and follow the signs, very narrow and trees around, but a wonderful
place to stop the night - no one else anywhere near - there are houses
as you drive up this lane. It is signposted from the main road. No facilities
4 Mizen Head - again another wonderful spot,
tucked back into a corner away from the entrance to the walkway and Tourist
Information Spot. This was closed when we were here. Could be windy. No
5 Gougane Barra National Park. This is a lovely
park and we stopped down close to the toilet block. Water was also available
here. There are lovely walks here. Well worth a visit.
6 Bantry House. I hasten to add to this one,
we did go into the Armada Exhibition and has asked when paying if there
was any chance of stopping overnight in the car park. (We had been told
by a local that it is sometimes possible). Whilst walking around the gardens,
we were approached by what we then learned was the owner, who asked if
we were the ones enquiring about stopping. He said, no problem there was
a water tap behind the little chalet (used for paying). How lucky, so
I can now say we stayed at Bantry House. BUT do ask here, after all it
is a private house.
7 We were told of a spot at Dursey Island (cable
car) BUT we got there and were told in no uncertain terms that NO YOU
CAN'T stop here. So we turned back down the road and as you return, on
the right hand side up slightly from the road is a picnic spot. We stopped
here for the night, lovely views over Garnish Point.
8 We passed through Sneem and then we turned
off on a road that goes up to meet the R566 Sneem to Kilarney road, it
was signed Blackwater Tavern 4km - we pulled in at a large area of waste
ground on the left and stopped for the night.
9 Another spot that was a possibility was Ballinskelligs
Beach (CP) but it was too early, there was a loo - but it was awful.
10 Back to Waterville and up again through the
middle of the Ring of Kerry, where we have stopped for the night. We are
in a picnic spot in the Ballaghisheen Forest. Looks quite nice and should
be quite quiet - well it wasn't not because of noise but because of midges,
we ended up evacuating it at 2330! So use this one with caution. Lovely
spot and fantastic drive through the middle but watch the season.
11 IF you take the road thru the middle and continue
on towards Glencar you come across a large bit of gravel at the top of
the pass. This was where we ended up, only at the time we couldn't see
a thing, it was raining heavily and we were in cloud! Wonder if anyone
else will find it - I think it was heading towards Moll's Gap - still
on the road up thru the middle of the Ring of Kerry.
12 Another of those, not sure exactly where it
is, but we drove out to Castlemaine, and followed a route, supposedly
scenic with a viewpoint, well that is where we were - scenery - cloud
and nothing else to show. 2 days later we had taken the road up over the
mountain pass again to see where we had parked and the view we had missed
this time we were lucky we could. It was not crystal clear, but enough
to make out what we had missed, the view on one side was over Castlemaine
and the harbour (which is a nature reserve) and a few hundred yards further
on was another viewing point, and this time you could see Tralee and Tralee
Bay very clearly. It was nice to see the road up and down as well instead
of just cloud - so two places to stop up here.
13 Next stop might suit you, but it didn't us!
We got to Slea Head itself and there is a car park with a twisting road
down to the beach - we went to the car park, I went to take photos as
usual it was nice, we had decided to stop for the night. After about 90
mins we could smell gas, and became a little concerned, we wondered if
it was because we weren't level - so decided to move on. We didn't get
it again, but we did discover we were nearly out of gas - and now think
this was the smell
.we didn't get so low again!
14 We went to Ballylongford where we have come
down to a Castle, Carrigafoyle Castle, which is yet another ruin and seems
to be popular by the number of cars that have pulled up, stopped between
5 and 10 mins and then retraced their steps. We are stopping here the
night. The sad bit is that they are repairing the castle, well making
it safe and it is surrounded by scaffolding and doesn't look too good,
and an assortment of builders materials as well. We are hoping that as
it is Saturday tomorrow, workmen will not be arriving. - you guessed it
15 We stopped on a pier in Liscannor where the
cruises to the Cliffs of Moher start. If the weather was good in the morning
we would do one, but at the time we were there it was raining and there
was cloud/mist so we couldn't see anything, I would like to do it. After
all I have seen them from above, the cruise would be really good. We shall
see. We didn't do it. Do you get the impression that it rained a lot on
this holiday - you would be right
.it was a really wet holiday, you
know the bits, before we arrived it was dry, and apparently when we left,
so perhaps you should make sure you go somewhere different to us!
16 Noted this one: The road then took us further
on along the coast, there was a good parking spot at Bealaglugga but we
were too early for a night stop
17 We continued on a tour and then around the
coast to Roundstone. We stopped at in a car park just on the west side
of the town, and we got in as well so the place was big, but it wasn't
a good place to stop at 23'. It would be a nice place to stop plenty of
cafes/pubs all doing fresh fish. Lovely little harbour. Perhaps if you
were a camper you could stop here.
18 So we followed the road on around with the
intention of taking a couple of the little coastal roads that go off this
main route, hoping to find a stopping place for the night. The first one
we found a sign to Errislannan Point, and we followed the road, just the
width of the motorhome, and within a few hundred yards, we saw a large
monument - and guess what a viewing area. Fantastic views for 360deg.
The monument is to Alcock and Brown - they landed here in 1919 on the
first flight across the Atlantic at 109mph
.. mind you it is a bit
windy and the sun is out as well, been out for about 90 mins now things
started looking up.
Not a stopping place, but if you are here, do make sure you take in The
Sky Road. Well worth it for the views alone. This goes west out of Clifden.
19 This is on Achill Island - We continued around
taking the Atlantic Drive to Keel and then turned to take the Atlantic
Drive around the hills. We passed the deserted village, deserted due to
the famine, all that remains are the walls of the houses laid out on the
hillside, and then we came to Doogort where there are two beaches, one
called Barnynagappul Strand and Goldren Strand. We decided to stop here
the night overlooking the golden strand. Pub opposite which serves evening
meals as well, so this was very convenient. The Anchor Bar & Lounge
& Restaurant. It specialises in fish
20 We were on the main road R314 towards Sligo
and continued passing what we have later learnt is a Neolithic centre
(but it looked closed when we were there, we ear-marked it as a place
to stop for the night if we didn't find anything else, there was a coach
park there). Shame really as it would probably have been very interesting,
but I still haven't found anything about it at the TI offices!!
21 Anyway we then turned off to do yet another
of our loops, this one taking us to Downpatrick Head. Road a bit iffy,
but was OK if you were slow and careful, started with grass down the middle
but got worse. We decided this was the place for the night and made ourselves
comfortable. There were about 4 areas in which to park, we started at
the first, ended on the second for the night, as it gave a view of the
whole of the bay. Nice walks up on the Head with blow holes in the cliff,
so do be careful, there are signs.
20 We then drove through Ballysadare where the
Bay encroaches on it, this then took us out on the R292 loop road to Strandhill.
We found a scenic road leading off to the right, which made me hang on
for dear life at the beginning. It gave brilliant views though of the
surrounding area. Up here we found a mountain car park which we thought
we would use to stop the night. We walked up the mountain, but I must
admit we didn't make it to the top, several others did though.
21 Next we were into Co. Leitrim, and we passed
through Manorhamilton and on to Glencar. We stopped here about 1700 and
had a cup of tea and then walked up to the waterfalls. We decided to stop
the night here there are toilets and water available. It is a nice spot
surrounded by mountains and a lake. Continuing along this loop road, we
found three other parking spots that would have been useful - isn't it
funny, if only you knew what was around the corner, but you would just
hoping for a better one.
22 This is not strictly a wild spot - but one
to add to your list - this is new or was when we were there - first of
all we had looked around Donegal, saw the castle and then returned to
the car park, it was raining more or less continuously, just lighter at
times than others! (See stilling doing it) We then started a tour, drove
through to Killibegs and as we approached, the mountain tops were in cloud,
which didn't bode well. We decided to try to find somewhere to stop, and
at the Rally we had been given a little card to Killibegs Motorvan Stop
Over, and here we are. It was only opened at Easter, the owner has flattened
out the top of a hill and it is about 50ft circular, overlooking the entrance
to Killibegs Harbour, It should be a lovely stop on a nice day that is
for sure. Electricity, water and dumping facilities are available, no
showers etc., but everything else.
23 Noted this one, we didn't stop, wrong time
of day: We continued around the R263 towards Glencolumbkille where there
is a viewpoint overlooking the village with a picnic table etc
24 Noted this as well, again too early: We drove
on to Malin Beg (Head?) where there was a view point and car park, we
arrived with an empty car park, stopped for lunch at 1345 and then were
joined by about 14 cars in total, coming and going. It was a nice spot
for an overnight stay.
25 This was found with difficulty, lovely spot,
followed a sign to Dooey Point and have ended up for the night at Tra
Beach, well that is what we think it is called. It is windy and we are
a-rocking slightly, but it isn't too bad - we are behind sand dunes, down
a hill from the road, there is a bungalow at the top, and the beach is
a long one used for surfing. Very quiet here, We continued on the track/road
to rejoin the N56 to Dunglow.
26 This was after going to Glenveagh National
Park on the R254, we then came across Lough Barra which sits under another
high mountain Slieve Snaght (683m) and there is a small area to park and
see this nature reserve. It is slightly sloping but we put out the levellers
and watched a guy and his wife stacking their peat
.for 3 hours
breaking work - then back to Dunglow again.
27 We then carried on all the way down to Millford
and back up around another peninsula to Fanad Head. This was really good
drive (road awful as usual) but interesting, this is where Tawny/Tamry
is. (They can't seem to make up their minds either!). The road back down
to Portsalan was good too, as you were high up and able to view the coastlines.
At Fanad Head we could see Hord Head, Melmore Head, Rinmore Point to the
West and then Dunaff Head and Malin Head to the East of us, really excellent
viewpoint. We got to Portsalon and hadn't found anywhere suitable to stop
- never is when we want one - and then we found a beach, no camping
and we were faced with a mountain climb with corkscrew bends. I would
have preferred to drive it the next morning, but my husband reckoned there
would be viewpoints and we could stop on the mountain. Well he was right,
there were, and what views, but they weren't flat or suitable, more like
pull ins - not proper viewpoints, so we found ourselves in Rathmullen.
Seemed a dead place and it is raining again, but we are parked down by
the pier/beach. Pubs, restaurants and toilets close so not too bad.
I will add a bit here - the next bit is the Inishowen Peninsula - make
sure this is a MUST DO on your list - it is even signposted well - and
we loved it, somehow we had missed it on our previous trip.
28 We then dropped down to Culduff which had
a lovely beach and parking area, but a sign saying no camping etc. So
on we drove and came across a beach called Tramore Bay and stopped here
for the night. It is a small beach and is rocky just off the beach that
you can walk on. A few houses up on the hill and that is all. The parking
area has recently (very) been tarmaced, and there is a picnic table.
29 After Londonderry, we drove back to the main
A2 and followed that through (bypassed) Limavaddy and to Downhill. I then
saw a sign to Gortmore - with a viewpoint 3 miles. So here we are up on
top of a 1 in 5 hill having driven around a mountain and drive a straight
line and we are perched in a parking space right on top overlooking Magilligan
Point with a fantastic view. Definitely a nice stop, no signs to say you
can't stop the night either, which is good. Hang on it was a HOT day,
must note that
30 We wanted to see the Giant's Causeway before
it rained if we could, Drove up and paid €5 to park, the car park
and facilities are on Moyle District Council's land and you have to pay,
even as an NT member. €1 for the audio visual show too. In the car
park, we had asked if we could stay the night, the parking attendant,
just said, "I didn't hear and winked at him". Another motorhome
was there as well. So ask, and it may be granted.
31 Next afternoon we got to the Carrick-a-Rede
rope bridge (NT) and parked up and walked the 1km down to the bridge.
When we got back, we asked if it was possible to stop the night. We were
told it wouldn't be a problem. Again ask, it is NT land.
32 We then drove down through Larne and Carrickfergus
to Belfast, having decided to visit the National Ulster Folk and Transport
Museum which is on the road to Bangor. We got here at 1500 and asked if
it would be possible to stop the night in the car park as after speaking
to the guy at the reception 2 hours would not be enough, he let us in
for free then and we stopped in the car park (did get a knock later to
check we were OK, explained we had asked) and he said he would be locking
us in, we said no problem. We went to both museums the next day, and definitely
worth a visit, very well done.
33 Did Mount Stewart (NT) and returned to near
Mount Stewart to the Conningsbury Picnic Spot to stop for the night. It
is very nice, but close to the A21, so somewhat noisier than usual as
on that evening some young lads decided it was a race track for their
34 We decided to drive part of a tour and as
there was a parking viewpoint at Spelga Dam, we would detour to that and
stop the night if there were no signs saying no overnight camping. There
aren't so we stopped.
35 From the Silent Valley (Belfast Water Reservoir,
worth another visit) we drove some more around the Mourne Mountains and
then back down to the coast. We went to Newcastle and then we drove back
up into them again via another road, and found a night stop at a place
called Slieve Meelmore
36 Back into the South again now. Next stop
for the night was a beach spot, very breezy, and we are facing the Irish
sea, we are somewhere along between Dunany Point and Clogher Head, probably
close to a place called Port.