Skip to main content Text Only version of this page
Access keys help
Where I Live
A-Z Index

13 October 2006
Accessibility help
Text only
TV and radio Directory A to Z Talk Lifestyle Holiday homepage

BBC Homepage
TV and radio

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!




£48 per night bed and breakfast on Friday, Saturday or Sunday, or £29 per night on Monday to Thursday

We went with:

Hydro Hotel on 00 353 6570 74005

About this trip

Sample costs

Direct flights to Shannon cost around £60

Extra information

Travel facts
Further reading

For more tour operators and information, search the web.


All prices are approximate, and correct at time of original broadcast. Always double-check prices with individual organisations. Please note that the BBC is neither responsible for, nor endorses the external sites shown on this page.
Rowland Rivron Rowland Rivron visited the spa town of Lisdoonvarna in County Clare, Ireland.

The name comes from ‘Lios Duin Bhearna’, which means the lios or enclosure of the fort in the gap. It’s a popular area for rambling, and most walkers follow the Burren Way, a 26 mile walk signposted between Liscanoor and Ballyvaughn in South West Ireland.

If coastal scenery isn’t enough for you, then the Burren Way also takes you across country into the sleepy villages of Doolin and Fanore. While you’re in the area, you could visit the Spectacle Bridge. About half a kilometre south-west of the town, it spans a deep narrow gorge through which the Aille River flows. You could also try tramping through Lisdoonvarna bog at Cnoc na Madre.

But it’s the nearby village of Lisdoonvarna that draws the crowds for an altogether different reason – as it’s the home of Europe’s largest matchmaking festival.

Armed with some tips from Willy, Rowland decided to head to the village tea rooms for the first dance of the day – or as the locals call it – the first CHANCE of the day. As Willy told him there’s no point just hanging around, at Lisdoonvarna if you don’t ask, you don’t get. But don’t lose heart because at Lisdoonvarna you’re almost guaranteed to find someone to take your breath away.

Traditionally this was a festival for the farmers in search of a wife, but today Lisdoonvarna has flung its doors open to anyone in search of a good time. Of course night time in Lisdoonvarna gets even busier, with everyone making their way down the high street, in search of the craic. And, if they’re lucky, someone to love. As well as dancing there’s live Irish music in most pubs, although getting to the bar can be quite a task, but don’t worry or hurry, because the music carries on until the early hours.

One of the top 10 tourist attractions in Ireland, the mighty cliffs of Moher stand at 700 feet and a walk to the top of the look-out tower gives fantastic views.

Try the water

Apart from the festival, Lisdoonvarna is also famous for having the only operational spa in Ireland. And they reckon that to truly appreciate the therapeutic qualities of the sulphur water (which contains iron and magnesia too) is to drink it . . . and then you need to get in it to have a good old soak.

If you liked this, why not try a spa in Newcastle?

Travel facts

Best time to go

April to September for the weather. Find details of the next matchmaking festival

Approx flight time

Around 1 hour flight from London

Time difference


Visa requirements

Not required
Foreign & Commonwealth Office

Health risks



Check out the latest rates: use our currency converter



Further Reading

Irish Tourist Board County Clare Lisdoonvarna Matchmaker

We can help you choose your next holiday

“Can you take surfing lessons/hire surf gear on the beaches of Fuerteventura?”
Do you have any advice for kasrossi?

What’s your holiday money worth?

Catch up with the latest reports from Holiday

About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy