Kevin with some smaller passengers

Events Calendar

Killilagh church Doolin Heritage WeekendDoolin Heritage Weekend
22 to 23 June 2013

The Heritage Weekend is part of The Gathering and is aiming to build a connection between those who emigrated and the ones buried in Killilagh Graveyard in Doolin. It also wants to raise awareness locally, nationally and internationally of the need to conserve and restore heritage buildings in the Doolin area.

What can you expect on the weekend? The Saturday the main focus will be on the graveyard and families interred therein. Tours, heritage walks and site visits will be part of the extensive programme.

An interesting series of talks on archaeology and conservation is scheduled. One family from Doolin that will be highlighted are the MacNamara’s. But not to worry – it will be interesting for everybody! See here for more information.


Doolin Folk Festival Doolin Folk Festival
14 to 16 June 2013

Doolin has long established its fame for being the traditional music capital of Ireland, back in the days of Micho Russell and his musical family.

The inaugural Doolin folk festival will enhance Doolin’s great reputation in the music world even further, with an amazing line-up of the Who is Who in the folk scene.

The festival will take place over three days in the middle of June, in a marquee on the lawn of Hotel Doolin. Doolin is famed the world over for its traditional Irish music and the idea of the festival is to bring back to Doolin any traditional & folk musicians who have had a connection with the area over the years. The organisers from Hotel Doolin have managed to attract some of the biggest names in the Irish music scene to play over the weekend: names like Luka Bloom, Martin Hayes & Steve Cooney, Scullion, Hermitage Green, Andy Irvine & Dónal Lunny, Socks in the Frying Pan, The CéiléBandits & Kevin Griffin, and many, many more.

The festival will also feature food stalls and a farmers market & traditional crafts fair.

See here for more details.


Writers weekend DoolinDoolin Writers Weekend
24 to 26 May 2013

The inaugural Doolin Writers weekend will consist of workshops, lectures and readings by some of Ireland’s leading authors, as well as some great local traditional music.

Hotel General Manager Donal Minihane says ‘It is a great opportunity for aspiring writers as well as literary fans and published authors to get together and celebrate everything that is good about Irish literature. Many artists and writers spent time in Doolin, including J.M. Synge, George Bernard Shaw, Dylan Thomas, Augustus John and Oliver St. John Gogarty. This summer we look forward to welcoming back some of Ireland’s best writers for what we hope will become an annual literary event in North Clare.’

Hotel Doolin in association with the Irish Writers Centre is also delighted to announce the launch of DOOLIN SHORT STORY COMPETITION 2013! Prize fund: €1,000 for first place and second/third of €600/€400. Entries can be on any theme and should be no longer than 3,000 words. The fee is €7 and closing date for entries is Monday 8th April, 5pm. Winners will be announced at the inaugural Doolin Writer’s Weekend on 24th – 26th May 2013. John MacKenna is this year’s judge: acclaimed author of seventeen books including short-stories, novels, memoir, history and biography. He is a winner of the Irish Times Fiction Award; the C Day Lewis Award; the Hennessy New Irish Writing Award and his most recent novel, “The Space Between Us”, was shortlisted for the Kerry Book of the Year Award.

All three winning entries will feature on the Irish Writers’ website and the story placed first will also appear in print in The Clare People.

Burren Slow Food Festival
17 to 19 May 2013

As you certainly know, the Slow Food movement is a global initiative with the goal to first and foremost educate people about wonderful local culinary resources in the face of the over-commercialisation, globalisation and homogenisation of our food.

Slow Food Clare joins other groups worldwide to celebrate locally produced food through talks, cookery demonstrations, food-related walks, a farmers market, a festive dinner, smoked salmon and beer tastings and even performances of the Burren Players on the weekend of the 17 to 19 May 2013.

Come and discover the rich and versatile tradition of food production in the Clare area!  Special guest  this year is celebrity chef Richard Corrigan, so this is something not to be missed! Also, many talented chefs from the Burren area will be demonstrating their skills with samples to taste after the cookery demos.

For a full event schedule & detailsvisit the Slow Food Clare website and Facebook page.


Burren Tolkien festival Burren Tolkien Society Festival
9 to 16 May 2013

The inaugural Burren Tolkien Society festival is about to shake up the opinions and previous statements made in the world of Hobbit fans. There are a lot of places that claim to be the imaginary birthplace for Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Ring” landscapes. The festival’s talks and walks are about exploring if the Burren could be THE ONE.

Peter Curtin, founder of the Burren Tolkien Society and owner of the Roadside Tavern, learnt through a chance encounter in Galway about the connection between Tolkien and the Burren. Read more about it

Between talks with very interesting experts who know their stuff, and walks to explore the landscape of the Burren and the possibility of it being the source of imagery for Tolkien’s trilogie, there will also be enough room for live music, hog roast and a Hobbit ale launch at the Roadside Tavern.

The festival will take place from 9 to 16 May 2013 in Ballyvaughan and Lisdoonvarna.  Go to festival programme.

Fanore Gentian orchids mountain avensBurren in Bloom Festival
4 May to 2 June 2013

May and June are the months to be in the beautiful Burren, a limestone area world-renowned for its diversity in rare flowers, but also for its archaeology, caves, wildlife and so on.

The Burren in Bloom festival celebrates all that is unique and amazing about the area. There will be talks about very different subjects, and on other days, walks in the Burren will get you out and about.

Did you know that the Aran Islands are geologically speaking part of the Burren? Get out there and explore! More details about the BiB festival

Father Ted Festival KilfenoraFather Ted Festival in Kilfenora
3 to 6 May 2013

Join in the fun at the annual Father Ted Festival this May bank holiday weekend when the Chinese mayor of Kilfenor will be holding the opening ceremony, and lookalike competitions alternate with quizes, tea at the original Fr Ted house, treasure hunts and much more.  More details

Kilfenora Music festival

Kilfenora Music Festival
25 to 29 April 2013

Kilfenora is staging its fifth annual traditional music festival from Thursday 25 to Monday 29 April 2013. As always, there will be a feast of set-dancing and the legendary Kilfenora pub sessions.

Events include a star-studded and unique concert on Saturday featuring the Ann Kirrane band and other celebrated members of the Droney family, a Sunday lunchtime concert in association with Riches of Clare, céilís featuring the Abbey and Four Courts céilí bands, and music sessions in the village pubs throughout the weekend with many fine musicians from North Clare and beyond, including numerous All-Ireland winners. There will also be a free open-air céilí with the mighty Kilfenora Céilí Band in Kilfenora Square on Sunday afternoon. For more information, go to the Kilfenora website.

Inish Iron Meían 2013Inis “Iron” Meáin 2013 -
16th March 2013

On 16th March, the Ironman will take place on Inis Meaín. Two routes of this run and walk race will cater for all from beginners to seniors.

This event affords an opportunity to raise much needed funds for the islands secondary school Coláiste Naomh Eoin, ensuring both the continued development and viability of this independent island community.

Doolin Ferries will offer a transfer service  from Doolin pier from Friday 15th March throughout the weekend. Book ferry now

session micho russell festival doolinThe legendary Micho Russell Memorial Weekend
22 to 25 February 2013

The festival season officially starts in North Clare with the brilliant Micho Russell Memorial Weekend which is always held in Doolin on the the last full weekend in February.

There is a fantastic line-up scheduled that has something for everyone. These are only some of the hightlights:

  • The Riches of Our Past:  an illustrated presentation of early Ireland in history, art, and song by Michael Geaney.
  • The Russell Concert features “The Legend of Grainne Mhaol”, a traditional music show based on the life of the legendary pirate queen, Grace O’Malley.
  • Music workshops for fiddle, concertina, tin whistle and accordion
  • Setdancing for those whose feet were tapping along to the music all day
  • as well as music recitals and trad music sessions in all pubs.

See here for more information and come along to mingle with the locals and friends of traditional music in Doolin, music capital of Ireland!

Father Ted Fest - nun in coffee cupTedFest – Father Ted Festival
21 to 24 February 2013

The Father Ted Festival, also widely known as Ted Fest, is a celebration of the life of a brilliant comedian, the late Dermot Morgan and his 1990′s cult TV sitcom “Father Ted”. The Friends of Ted event sees a huge influx of Father Ted fans, most of them dressed as characters of the show. They become part of the whole scene by taking part in an array of themed events associated with the comedy series including fancy dress, five-aside football (nuns against priests), toilet duck comedy awards, buckaroo speed dating, lovely girls contest and A Song For Europe. Some even come to the Aran Islands from far flung places like Japan! Book your tickets now.

Winterage festival in the BurrenBurren Winterage Weekend
26 to 28 October 2012

What a weekend – from exploring the amazing Glencurran Cave in Carron where early settlers lived and left their traces, to driving cattle on old drover’s roads and an outdoor concert with the Lismorahaun Singers. Clare hurling legend Anthony Daly will be opening a new walking trail in the Burren (Carron).
In Kilfenora, a display and talks about shorthorn cows will be taking place, while artists will shed light on different farming perspectives in Ireland, the UK and the USA. There will be children’s activities in the cathedral. Writer Moya Roddy will give a talk on the Celtic festival of Samhain.
Events in Lisdoonvarna will all be about music and food: There will a Burren masterchef cooking competition, cookery demonstrations, tastings and stalls of local produce. In the Roadside Tavern, the Micilín Conlon music festival will take place all weekend long, while locally produced cheeses and beers from the Burren Brewery can be tasted.
In Tubber, illustrated presentations and talks about life in former times will take place.

A weekend not to be missed – there is something happening to tickle everybody’s interest!

The Stunning EnnistymonThe Stunning playing in Ennistymon
Head west for the next Bank Holiday weekend! The Stunning play a very special 25th anniversary show in Ennistymon, Co. Clare (just 15 min from Doolin) on Sunday October 28th. The venue is the picturesque Falls Hotel and this is the town that inspired songs such as ‘Frank the Tramp’ and ‘Town for Sale’ amongst others. The band have not played Ennistymon since the early nineties, so this is a rare opportunity to see them in Joe and Steve’s hometown with the full, original line-up and a great local support act.

Micilin Conlon Weekend Roadside Tavern Micilín Conlon Weekend
Roadside Tavern, Lisdoonvarna – 26th to  28th October 2012

As in previous years, there will be a memorial weekend of great traditional music taking place in the Roadside Tavern. Among the many musicians taking part will be Christy Barry, Seán Tyrrell, Peadar Reilly, Terry Bingham, Bobby Gardiner to name just a few. All musicians welcome to join in.

Sat & Sun 4 to 6pm: Tasting with Burren Brewery beers, local cheeses and breads.
More details here

Burren walkBurren Peaks Walking Festival
Ballyvaughan – 28th to 30th September 2012

The  festival weekend promises you a real taste of the Burren and offers guided hill and lowland walks varying in distance and grade catering for all walkers. Enjoy walking in this wonderfully rich unique limestone pavement with its Karst landscape, grykes, clints, paths, and green trail road. It is the Land of the Fertile Rock with its precious and delicate terrain.
And if you fancy walking for just one day (it can be strenuous after all, these deceiving mountains), you can go on a trip to the Aran Islands or do a Cliffs of Moher cruise on the other day. More details here

Dun Aengus in Inishmore

Join our competition on Facebook!

Would you like to win a weekend at the Aran Islands with the ferry trip, accommodation and Cliffs of Moher cruise all paid? Then have a look at our Facebook page. Just like and share, and you are in with a chance to win! The winner will be chosen on 28th September 2012.
Good luck!
Matchmaking Festival Lisdoonvarna Doolin Ireland Matchmaker Bar

The Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival is taking place every year for the whole month of September and the first weekend in October. About 150 years ago, it was for many farmers – living their hard lives out on their land – the only way to meet an eligible woman who might want to share his life. In the old times, where the range of a donkey cart or lateron a bicycle decided who you can meet, it was hard to meet anybody at all.

So in September, with the harvest safely brought in, the bachelor men and women had the time to congregate in Lisdoonvarna which had experienced a hike in popularity due to the newly discovered sulphur wells which cured many a diseases.

This tradition has survived and is thriving more than ever. Especially on the weekends, people from all walks of life, all ages and all corners of the world are coming together here to have a great time and some craic. Dancing is going on to live music in most of the pubs and hotels in town from midday until the small hours of the morning, and the atmosphere is informal and exciting.

Cruising during the day and cruising at night – a great idea to make a (long) weekend out of it is to come to Lisdoonvarna or Doolin (book your accommodation early – everything sells out very quickly!). Then, during the day, you go on a beautiful cruise under the Cliffs of Moher, and at night you cruise the bars and pubs of Lisdoonvarna!

Emerald Isle Classics Doolin

Emerald Isle Classics – Notre Dame vs US Naval Academy

Organisers of this epic event expect at least 35,000 Americans to travel to Ireland – but not only for the game and the surrounding festivities itself, but for a holidays before and after in other parts of Ireland.

We have already spotted a lot of the fans in Doolin who are having a great time in the run-up to the game on Saturday 1 September 2012!

This is a great warm-up for the 2013 Gathering. The game and surrounding events present an opportunity to showcase to the travelling fans – and the millions watching it on TV in the US - what a Gathering can look like and to extend the invitation to them to return in 2013. The Gathering Ireland 2013 is being promoted internationally as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to visit Ireland and explore any connections there are between Ireland, the United States and the rest of the world.

A great reason to come to Doolin! A celebration of Irish craft brewing at Hotel Doolin from 24 to 26 August 2012 with lots of music.

There is a fantastic line-up: For the music, there will be The Sumbrellas, The Ceili Bandits, Bushplant, Socks in the Frying pan, Blackie O’Connell and more… And on the liquid front, there will be more than 15 brews on tap as well as whiskeys which all wait to be tasted.

Admittance: €5 only, and it includes a souvenir glass
(available at door only)

What a great idea to make a weekend of it – book your accommodation in Doolin, and then your ferry to the Aran Islands! Or go on a Cliffs of Moher cruise to round off a perfect weekend in the beautiful west of Ireland.

See here for more infos