Visit 6 of the Prettiest Small Towns in Ireland Today

When people connect Ireland and travel in the same sentence, most of us would normally think about the classic details of the Emerald Isle. Lush green hills, rows of terraced houses in variant colours, warm welcomes, local night pubs, old riverside villages, and (of course) the pretty small towns. It’s all waiting to be explored every day. If you are planning to pay a visit or make a last-minute weekend escape in Ireland, make sure you won’t skip a small town or two. Scroll down to find out which Irish small towns are hailed the prettiest.


Not a few towns in Ireland were planned and sketched but Westport is one of those Irish small towns that were lucky enough to get laid out by the famous British architect James Wyatt. Wyatt was also known for designing numerous buildings including the Royal Military Academy of Woolwich in London. Some of the sceneries that give charm to the small town include the Old Bridge over the Carrowbeg River, Croagh Patrick Mountain, Clew Bay, Westport House, and more. 


The small town of Cobh is known for its panoramic show of colourful waterfront houses. Aloof from that, the small town is also a beacon of timeless history. Back in the past, Cobh was the last stopping port of call in Europe before the ill-fated Titanic voyage in 1912. Land in this town and make these quaint rows of houses such a colourful backdrop for an IG-worthy photo.


Carlingford is best known for its medieval streets in front of the Irish Sea where several histories are linked into. These include the old castle of King John, which was built by the Normans decades after they first invaded the country in 1711.  Most travellers would say that if you take a spot on the shore of the small town and stare across the lough, you will then find the stunning view of Northern Ireland. And since Carlingford is a small town right next to the sea, many tourists claim that you can find excellent seafood beaneries and oyster farms here.


Another set of rugged, colourful houses is found in a small Irish port town called Dingle. The small town boasts for its famous fishing harbour, sandy beaches, and mountainous land areas that offer some of Ireland’s most captivating sceneries. Tourists also love the bottlenose dolphins that are regularly spotted in the bay and (of course) the Oceanworld Aquarium where visitors are allowed to see and learn about the world beneath the waves including different sea creatures such as penguins, otters, and sharks. Aside from sea life, the small town also offers numerous pubs that are mostly centralised in cultural action and music.  


Clifden is acclaimed as the prettiest coastal town in County Galway and in the region of Connemara. It is a go-to spot for both locals and travellers who want to explore the surrounding rugged countryside for its numerous arts and craft shops and some of the most exciting pubs you’ll ever find across the region. Ever heard of Ed Sheeran’s Galway Girl that sings like “She played the fiddle in an Irish band but she fell in love with an English man. Kissed her on the neck and then I took her by the hand. Said, “Baby, I just wanna dance with my pretty little Galway Girl.”. Now I understand why people sing their hearts out for this song because it already tells a lot about the county. 


Nestled on the bank of Nore River, Kilkenny is known as one of the most travelled medieval towns in Ireland. Aside from its accessibility from Dublin City, Kilkenny is rich in well-preserved ancient and notable buildings including St. Canices Cathedral and the Rothe House, a famous merchant’s house established in the 16th century. Not to mention the most notable spot you’ll ever witness in the small town, Kilkenny Castle was established in 1192 by the Norman Occupiers and how amazing it still exists today. 


Author Bio: Sarah Contreras is a full-time travel blogger which means writing adventures, travel spots, and accommodation reviews is her bread and butter. She currently writes for Rochestown Dublin, the most inviting lodge hotel and spa in Dublin City.