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Introducing Doolin

Doolin gets plenty of press and chatter as a centre of Irish traditional music, owing to a trio of pubs that have sessions throughout the year. It's also known for its setting – 6km north of the Cliffs of Moher and down near the ever-unsettled sea, the land is windblown, with huge rocks exposed by the long-vanished top soil.

Given all its attributes, you might be surprised when you realise that Doolin as it's known barely exists. Rather, you might be forgiven for exclaiming, 'There's no there here!' For Doolin is really three infinitesimally small neighbouring villages. Fisherstreet is right on the water, Doolin itself is about 1km east on the little River Aille, and Roadford is another 1km east. None has more than a handful of buildings, which results in a scattered appearance, without a centre.

Still, the area is hugely popular with music-seeking tourists. There are scores of good-value hostels and B&Bs spread about the rough landscape. It's also a place to get boats to the offshore Aran Islands.