Fanore Beach

The Burren

With an extensive backdrop of grass-covered dunes, this Blue Flag–rated beach off the R477 is patrolled by lifeguards in summer and is a surfing hotspot. Its golden sands have exposed limestone outcrops – part of the Burren – at low tide. Signs identify hiking trails along the coast and up into the dramatic hills. You'll find showers and toilets open in summer in a small block by the car park.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby The Burren attractions

1. Doolin Cave

5.75 MILES

The Great Stalactite, the longest in Europe at 7.3m, is the big draw of Doolin Cave. Tour times vary seasonally, but are usually on the hour. Glacial clay…

2. Aillwee Cave

6.19 MILES

Aillwee's extraordinary caves were carved out by water some two million years ago. The main cave penetrates 600m into the mountain, widening into larger…

3. Spa Well

6.34 MILES

At the town's southern end is a spa well, with a sulphur spring, a Victorian pumphouse and a wooded setting. The iron, sulphur, magnesium and iodine in…

4. Gleninsheen Wedge Tomb

6.84 MILES

One of Ireland's most famous prehistoric grave sites, Gleninsheen lies beside the R480 7km south of Ballyvaughan. It's thought to date from 4000 to 5000…

5. Poulnabrone Dolmen


Also known as the Portal Tomb, Poulnabrone Dolmen is one of Ireland's most photographed ancient monuments. Built more than 5000 years ago, the other…

6. Caherconnell Fort

8.14 MILES

For a close-up look at a well-preserved, drystone caher (walled fort) of the late Iron Age–early Christian period, stop at this privately run heritage…

7. Spiddal Craft Village

8.83 MILES

Watch potters, painters, jewellers and weavers plying their crafts at the Ceardlann an Spiddal Craft & Design Studios. Two-day basket-weaving workshops…

8. Doonagore Castle

8.88 MILES

Looking every inch a fairy-tale stronghold, round, turreted Doonagore Castle dates from the 16th century. The ruin was restored by architect Percy Leclerc…