Located 10km east of Ennis on the River Rine, the quaint village of Quin is rich in heritage and tourism. The village is centred around a Franciscan abbey and is close to several sites of natural, archaeological and architectural heritage significance.
Built on the foundations of an earlier Norman castle, the 14th century Franciscan abbey in Quin is one of the finest and most complete remains of monastic antiquity in Ireland. Quin Abbey is adjacent to a gothic style church where visitors are invited to climb the spiral staircase and revisit how the monks lived while taking in the panoramic views of scattered woodland and fields bounded by stonewalls. Admission to the site is free.
Make the most of Quin’s picturesque setting and proud equine heritage by booking indoor or outdoor horse-riding lessons or going trail riding. Several riding stables around the village offer fun days out for riders of all ages and experience levels. Quin also offers fishing all year round on the River Rine.
Across from the local Roman Catholic church in Quin is a plaque commemorating local man Paddy Hannon whose 1893 discovery of a nugget of gold at Kalgoorlie-Boulder in Western Australia sparked the beginning of a world-renowned gold rush. ‘The Golden Mile’ as it was later termed, is considered one of the world’s richest goldfields.
The renowned restored tower house at Knappogue Castle is located just two kilometres from Quin. The late medieval building also is a popular venue for medieval banquets. A short trip south of Quin will bring you to Dromoland Castle, now a five-star hotel with its own internationally renowned golf course, whose origins date back almost half a millennium.
Situated 8km east of Quin on 50 acres of wooded grounds is Craggaunowen, an award-winning prehistoric park. The popular visitor attraction recreates homesteads, animals and artefacts which existed in Ireland during Ireland’s pre-historic and early Christian eras. Visitors can see a replica of a Crannóg (lake dwelling), a ring fort, an Iron Age roadway and an outdoor cooking site. Also on display is the ‘Brendan Boat’ built by Tim Severin who sailed from Ireland to Newfoundland, re-enacting the voyage of St. Brendan, reputed to have discovered America nine centuries before Christopher Columbus.
Quin is one of six trailheads on the Mid Clare Way, a 148km loop boasting remote hills, river valleys and lake shore scenery in abundance. Taking six days to complete, the loop connects with the East Clare Way.
A visit to Quin is incomplete without a stroll over the humpback bridge onto Main Street with its numerous pubs and shops.