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Cooraclare, West Clare


Set within the scenic rolling hills of the West Clare landscape, the small village of Cooraclare is located a short distance from the Wild Atlantic Way and some of Clare’s best-known visitor attractions. The western entry point to Cooraclare is marked by a stone bridge and the bustling Doonbeg River as its winds its way towards the Atlantic Ocean.

Situated a short walk from the village is the Old Parochial House which offers visitors an authentic Irish experience. The stables and outhouses surrounding the 19th century house have been renovated and converted into traditional style self-catering cottages with stone floors, wood beams and fireplaces.

The village is associated with “The Chapel Gates Of Cooraclare”, a song written by the local postman Frank O’Brien a century ago. The song paved the way for the formation of Chapel Gate Singers Club, which was set up in 2012 to preserve and promote the art of traditional singing in Cooraclare and surrounding areas. You can catch a weekend music session in one of the several pubs located in the village.

Chapel Gate Irish Whiskey offers guided tours and tasting sessions involving its JJ Corry whiskey. Within the 18th century barn that has has been transformed into a purpose-built bonded warehouse on the McGuane family farm, an expert guide shares insights into the history of whiskey bonding in Clare. Breathe in the scent of wooden casks full of maturing whiskey and discover the secrets behind the flavours, before finishing off your visit with a complimentary tasting.

The West Clare Equestrian Centre offers treks along golden sands of the nearby Doughmore beach as well as treks through scenic bog trails. The family-owned and run centre also provides both indoor and outdoor riding and show jumping lessons with qualified instructors to children and adults.

Cooraclare is located just 8km from the town of Kilrush, home to popular visitor attractions such as the Vandeleur Walled Gardens, Cappa Blue-Flag Beach, and Kilrush Marina with its daily boat trips to Scattery Island.