Stay at a Lighthouse
Have you ever stayed at a lighthouse? If you have, you’ll know what a fantastic and truly original experience it is. If not, add it to your ‘must do’ list right now!
Imagine being far from anywhere, but close to everything that’s good for your heart and great for your soul. Fresh air. Incredible views. Nature around you. And the sea stretching out in front of you, vast, powerful and mysterious. It’s no wonder that people come to lighthouses and propose! Or to celebrate what’s special: birthdays, anniversaries, family, friendship.
One of the ‘great’ things about many of the Great Lighthouses of Ireland is that you can stay in them. Blackhead and St. John’s Point in Northern Ireland both have really comfortable and characterful self catering accommodation in restored lightkeepers’ houses. As does Fanad Head and St. John’s Point in Donegal, Galley Head in Cork and Loop Head in Clare, all of which can be found along the fantastic Wild Atlantic Way.
Wicklow Lighthouse on the east coast may be a bit less wild but it’s certainly a more athletic experience. Here you stay in the lighthouse tower itself. There are 109 steps from the entrance hall up to the kitchen. Breathtaking alright!
If you prefer not to have to cook or look after yourself on holiday, Clare Island Lighthouse in Mayo is the place for you. Now a luxury boutique B&B, it’s the only lighthouse where a six course dinner, made with the very best of local produce, is served.
With all that fresh air and great food, surely you can look forward to a good night’s sleep at a lighthouse? Certainly, the beds are very comfy and it’s oh so very quiet. But be careful of your choice of bedtime reading. Particularly if you are of a sensitive or suggestible disposition. The visitor books at each lighthouse are a fascinating trove of guests’ stories and drawings about their stays. But some guests, perhaps with more vivid imaginations, have obviously been moved by the history and spirit of the place…
One guest at a lighthouse took a page at the back of the visitor book to record some unusual sights and sounds: the constant tapping at the window, despite its elevated position and the mysterious appearance of wet footprints on the bathroom floor the next morning …
At another lighthouse, a number of guests record an odd but not unfriendly feeling in the house and constant creaks and noises throughout the night. Now, these are old buildings in highly evocative places. And we all know that there is no such thing as ghosts…
If you’d like to see and experience living in a lighthouse for yourself, the lighthouses below all offer gorgeous accommodation, true to their maritime past.