I’m always asked for suggestions of things to see and do in Sligo, so I thought I’d write a blog post of some of my suggestions.
Go for a walk
These aren’t any old walks, these are Sligo Walks. Whatever your level of fitness and whatever your preference – forests, beaches, urban, rural – there’s a walk for you. Sligo Walks is a fantastic resource to find out all about the walks in the county. https://sligowalks.ie/ Take a walk on the dark side with the Sligo Dark Tales Walking Tour.
Seatrails run guided walks in County Sligo, you will hear the history from a maritime archaeologist. Go walking up the Caves of Keash and check out the village and also nearby Ballymote Castle. North West Adventure Tours host regular climbs up Benbulben.
Sligo is home to a number of markets that take place weekly. It’s always lovely to meet stallholders and locals and find foods and crafts that you won’t find anywhere else. Every Saturday you will find Achonry Farmers Market 10am – 1pm, Beltra Country Market, The Farmers Market at the IT Sligo. Rathcormac Market is on from 10-3 on Saturday. Cliffoney Market is on the first and third Sunday of the month from 11am – 1pm. Strandhill People’s Market is on every Sunday from 11am – 4pm. There’s a blog post dedicated to the Sligo Markets with a handy map here.
Go for a drive.
If you are interested in castles or cottages Sligo has them all. The photo above was taken at the Gleniff Horseshoe drive. You can see an old schoolhouse in the shadow of Diarmuid and Grainne’s cave. This is a spectacular drive in any weather – just mind the wandering sheep! Or drive around Lough Gill stopping off at Hazelwood Forest, Dooney Rock, Slish Wood and more – it’s easy to see why the poet W.B. Yeats got his inspiration. The Mullaghmore drive is another spectacular one, with Classiebawn Castle and Benbulben providing the backdrop to the Wild Atlantic Way. Lough Easkey is also another fabulous drive, along with the Ladies Brae. Be sure to take the road less travelled, you never know what you’ll see. There’s also the Yeats Trail – this is a signposted tour incorporating 14 locations associated with Yeats.
Talk to the animals.
There are a number of animal adventures for all the family to enjoy. Quarryfield Farm Experience, walk alpacas and meet the animals on this working farm. Atlantic Sheepdogs, this whole experience is just brilliant and great for all ages. Eagles Flying, birds of prey, and a wide range of animals for you to meet. Atlantic Way Alpaca Farm, walk an alpaca and meet the other animals. Also on the border of Sligo and Leitrim you’ll find Glencar Alpacas, photo above, a stunning location overlooking Glencar Lake.
Eat, drink and be merry
We have some of the most amazing restaurants, coffee shops and pubs in County Sligo. There are too many to list but I suggest you go exploring and see what you find. Check out Sligo Food Trail as well for lots of foodie experiences.
Step back in time
Sligo Folk Park has undergone a huge transformation and you can enjoy a step back in time with an audio tour. This really is not to be missed and is the perfect place to visit on a rainy day too. The cafe there is pretty special too. Read my longer blog post here: https://magnumlady.com/2021/07/03/sligo-folk-park-revisited/
Visit the megalithic cemeteries – there’s Carrowkeel and Carrowmore. Sligo Abbey in the centre of town is another place worth visiting.
Grab the buckets and spades
Sligo is home to so many beautiful beaches and is located on the stunning Wild Atlantic Way. Look out for the Wild Atlantic Way signs and visit one of the many beaches.
Visit a queen.
Climb up Knocknarea Mountain and see Queen Maeve’s final resting place. Did you know she was killed by a lump of cheese? But that’s a whole other story.
Sligo has some real gems when it comes to shopping, some lovely independent shops, as well as some well known ones. I have to mention Michael Quirke, not just a shop, an experience. Michael is a woodcarver and a great teller of myths and legends of Sligo. He will chat away to you as he works.
A Taste of Adventure
Sligo is the adventure capital of Ireland. You can choose from surfing, kayaking, mountain climbing, free diving, scuba diving, stand up paddling, boat trips, fishing trips and more. Suitable for all abilities and a great way to see the county.
Enjoy some culture.
Sligo is home to The Model Sligo, one of Ireland’s leading centres for contemporary art. You can also visit The Hamilton Gallery and the Hyde Bridge Gallery who host regular exhibitions. Whatever your interests Sligo has something for everyone.
Enjoy some rest and relaxation. Sligo is home to two seaweed bath centres, Voya in Strandhill or Kilcullens in Enniscrone. You can also enjoy yoga, spa treatments, reiki, beauty treatments, and so much more. I’d highly recommend the Ocean Sands Hotel Spa in Enniscrone, read the full blog post here: https://magnumlady.com/2023/02/11/a-spa-by-the-seaside/
I hope this blog post has given you a few ideas of places to visit in our beautiful county. Enjoy your visit.
Reading through this wonderfully told account of Sligo…I cannot believe how lucky I am to call this place home. I feel there is a renewed awakening happening, let’s all (hopefully) be part of it. Thank you, Val, for sharing.
One holiday may not be enough. Aren’t you lucky living within reach of such breathtaking possibilities.