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Framed by the rugged Caha Mountains and the sweep of Bantry Bay, Bantry has a wonderfully epic air. A survivor of poverty and mass emigration, it has prospered from the sea - both in terms of the oil terminal on Whiddy Island and the luscious shellfish that feature on menus across the county.
Dating from about 1700, the imposing Bantry House remains the home of the Shelswell-White family, descendants of the Earls of Bantry. Enjoy a guided tour of the eclectic collection of tapestries, furniture, and artworks. Stroll in the partly restored gardens, where sub-tropical plants and shrubs thrive.
Take the short ferry ride from Bantry to Whiddy Island, a wonderful place to spend a day enjoying the unique environment. Warmed by the Gulf Stream, the island has a distinctive ecology and abundant wildlife. And one pub.
Once akin to a miniature Venice, with waterways used for navigation, Bantry is now a cosmopolitan centre with a vibrant population, but you can still lose yourself on a refreshing seaside walk. Bantry Sea Wall extends for a mile, with a safe footpath, seating, and viewing points so you can appreciate its coastal beauty.
Bantry has two heritage trails; a blue one of 1.8 km and a red one of 1.3km. The walks take in such historic sites as St. Brendan’s Church and Kilkeenagh Burial Ground, as well as Godson’s Folly - location of a hotel whose owner spent so much money blasting a path to the building through a massive rock that he bankrupted himself.
Located 44km from Bantry, Mizen Head is Ireland’s most southwesterly point, and now it is home to an award-winning maritime museum offering spectacular views from its perch 700 feet above the ocean. Spectacularly situated, it is celebrated for sightings of dolphins, whales, seals, and seabirds.
One of Europe’s leading chamber music festivals is based in Bantry. The West Cork Chamber Music Festival attracts some of the world’s most exceptional performers. Come to Bantry in late June and early July for inspiring music in a stunning setting.
Masters of Tradition is a five-day celebration staged every August in Bantry that showcases the full spectrum of Irish traditional music with a series of performances by leading proponents of the art. The performances are staged in Bantry House and St Brendan’s Church.
Focused on the practice and craft of writing, the West Cork Literary Festival offers an exemplary workshop programme for both novice and experienced writers, as well as a full programme of supplementary events every July. Enjoy the Literary Tea, heritage walks, antiquarian book fair, and the letter café - as well as a remarkably friendly and supportive atmosphere.
Bantry is the ideal base for tackling the Sheeps Head Way, a long- distance walk (more than 150km) taking in the Sheep’s Head Peninsula and the general Bantry area. This secluded peninsula has some of the most unspoilt and unforgettable scenery in the country.
A major coup for the people of Bantry was the decision of the organisers of the Fastnet Rally, one of West Cork’s most popular sporting events, to move proceedings to their area. The Fastnet Rally, the climactic final event in the Dunlop National Rally Championship, takes place on the October bank holiday weekend.
0.4km from Bantry
Set among 40 acres of grounds, this group of holiday cottages is situated on the coast between Glengarriff and Bantry in County Cork. The cottages are surrounded by woodlands and gardens with magnificent views over Bantry Bay.
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Set among 40 acres of woodlands and landscaped gardens between Glengarriff and Bantry in County Cork, this holiday estate offers wonderful accommodation.
Housed within a 200-year-old stable block, each holiday cottage has three bedrooms and is tastefully decorated and equipped with every modern convenience.
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4.2km from Bantry
Ballylickey makes an excellent base for exploring West Cork. Situated at the very heart of the magnificent Bantry Bay, it is midway between Bantry Town and Glengarriff. Each holiday rental has three bedrooms and can accommodate up to six people with ease. The properties are comfortable and ideal for a relaxing vacation in West Cork, a place of stunning scenery, unspoilt surroundings, and warm welcomes.
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0km from Bantry
These superb holiday homes are located by the sea near Bantry in Ballylickey, County Cork.
Each of these 4-bedroom rentals can sleep eight, with two double beds and four single beds. All of the houses have an open-plan living/dining/kitchen area. The kitchen comes fully equipped with all modern conveniences. The accommodation also commands spectacular views of Bantry Bay.
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2.4km from Bantry
This superb holiday rental offers 3-star accommodation between Bantry and Glengarriff in West Cork. The spacious property consists of six bedrooms (one of which is en suite), three bathrooms, and a fully equipped kitchen and utility room. In addition, there’s a tastefully decorated dining/living room boasting breathtaking views of Bantry Bay.
Operated by Visitravel Ltd., Registered in Ireland, No. 486102. Registered Office: FEXCO Centre, Iveragh Road, Killorglin, Co. Kerry, Ireland.
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