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16th Apr 2017

10 Amazing Rural Irish Bars That You Need To Visit Before You Die


Being in the depths of winter, we’ve swapped the beer gardens for fireplaces and cocktails for hot whiskeys.

Since we all love to huddle in a warm local over the winter months, we’ve compiled a list of cosy pubs from the back arse of nowhere that are perfect for setting up shop for the weekend and soaking up the craic.

1. Duffs Bar – Ardboe, Tyrone

This tiny family-run bar is a favourite with locals along the shores of Lough Neagh – even though there’s only room for about 20 people. 

Traditional music sessions and quizzes aplenty, Duffs is about as cosy as it gets with plenty of local characters to spin a few yarns with. 

Get in there!

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Credit: Duffs Bar FB

2. Foxy John’s – Dingle, Kerry

Half-pub, half-hardware shop, sure what more could you ever need in your life than that? 

This brilliant little bar in Dingle will let you sit and relax with a pint as they fix your bike. 

Top quality service.


Credit: Foxy John’s FB

3. The Honk Bar – Newmarket, Clare

Located behind Shannon Airport, it would be easy to miss this little gem. 

John the Honk pulling the pints and if you’re lucky Mary might sort you out with a sausage sandwich.

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Credit: Joe Buckley Phoography

4. Johnny Joe’s, McCollam’s Bar – Cushendall, Antrim

They’re a hardy bunch up in the glens of Antrim, but Johnny Joe’s has a sterling reputation for good grub and trad music, and a beer garden if the weather allows you to chance one outside.

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Credit: Johnny Joe’s FB

5. The Mills Inn – Ballyvourney, Cork

Described as “one of the best kept secrets of the real Ireland in West Cork”, this beautiful little pub brews its own beer for its customers and has an unreal selection of food to choose from as well.

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Credit: Mills Inn FB

6. Creedon’s, Top of Coom – Kilgarvan, Kerry

Claiming to be “Ireland’s highest pub” (there are a few who dispute this) Creedon’s burnt down in a fire in 2012, but reopened its doors in 2014 and attracts all the local punters. 

Proprietors Tim and Eileen Creedon are known for their warm welcomes down in this classic pub.

7. Cleary’s – Miltown Malbay, Clare

The ultimate traditional music pub, Cleary’s is practically just a sitting room where a bunch of auld lads get together to drink whiskey and play a few tunes. 

Go in and make yourself home.


Credit: Old Images of Clare FB

8. Lily Finnegan’s – Cooley, Louth

The area around the Carlingford Lough is absolutely exquisite, and in the Cooley peninsula you’ll find this gem. 

Fun fact: Old Lily herself is an ancestor of current US vice president Joe Biden. If politicians don’t dazzle you, Bruce Springsteen once visited and bought all the farmers drinking there a pint.



9. The Three Jolly Pigeons – The Pigeons, Westmeath

Located about 10 minutes outside Athlone in an area known as “The Pigeons”, this place has the greatest open fire you could want and plenty of culchie banter to go with it.

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Credit: Three Jolly Pigeons FB

10. Beachcomber Bar – Rathmullan, Donegal

Donegal has some absolutely beautiful spots, and the Beachcomber is certainly one of the best of them. 

It has a beer garden to end all beer gardens with a class view over the Atlantic Ocean. 

We recommend you go immediately.

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Did we miss anywhere? Let us know in the comments.

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