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Introducing Glenties

At the foot of two valleys with a southern backdrop laid on by the Blue Stack Mountains, the proud Tidy Town of Glenties (Na Gleannta) is a good spot for fishing and has some cracking walks in the surrounding countryside. Glenties is linked with playwright Brian Friel, whose play (and subsequent film), Dancing at Lughnasa, is set in the town.

Brennan's B&B offers a warm welcome and three comfy guest rooms.

The Bus Eireann service (No 492) from Donegal stops in Glenties (€9.10, one hour), and continues to Dungloe (€5.50, 45 minutes) twice daily.

Worth a Trip: The Black Pig

When the first spluttering steam engine arrived in Donegal in 1895, the locals dubbed the monstrous, belching creature the Black Pig. The railways gave Donegal's isolated communities a new lease of life and a much-needed connection to the rest of the country. Over 300km of narrow-gauge tracks crossed the county in the railways' heyday, but after WWII business declined and the railway closed to passengers in June 1947, and to freight in 1952.

Today the county's only operational railway is the Fintown Railway. Lovingly restored to its original condition, the red-and-white 1940s diesel railcar runs along a rebuilt 5km section of the former County Donegal Railway track along picturesque Lough Finn. The return trip, which includes commentary, takes around 40 minutes.

Fintown is on the R250, 20km northeast of Glenties.

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