Galley Head

Galley Head Lighthouse rises an imposing 53m above the roaring Atlantic Ocean in the popular tourist haven of West Cork.


Galley Head is a gleaming white lighthouse that sits at the southernmost point of a picturesque headland known as Dundeady Island and is close to the charming market town of Clonakilty – home of the famous black pudding!

Irish Landmark Trust has restored two lightkeepers’ houses which offer self-catering accommodation with a difference. It’s the perfect base to pursue a wide range of outdoor activities from dolphin and whale watching, surfing at Inchydoney Blue Flag Beach to a historical walking tour of pretty Clonakilty.

Or you could simply relax and be refreshed by the scenery and serenity that surrounds you.

A quick history

  • Galley Head Lighthouse was built in 1875, during the heyday of lighthouse building.
  • When Galley Head was first constructed, it was the most powerful lighthouse light in the world.
  • The lighthouse’s lantern, dome and 21-metre tower are still painted white, just as they were in the 19th century.
  • The lighthouse was converted to electric operation in 1969 and automated in 1979.

Did you know?

  • The lighthouse’s original light could be seen in clear weather for a distance of 30km.
  • The lightkeepers at Galley Head would have witnessed the loss of the Lusitania in 1915 and sighted many British and German vessels during World War I and II.
  • Galley Head Lighthouse is a major shore light on the South Coast. Along with the Old Head of Kinsale and Fastnet Lighthouses, it’s an important aid to offshore navigation.
  • It is one of 65 lighthouses operated by the Commissioners of Irish Lights around the coast of Ireland and continues to provide a vital role in maritime safety today.

Booking Information


Clonakilty, Co Cork

Minimum Stay

2 nights


From €486


All year round

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St John’s Point


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