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County Clare – Lisdoonvarna

The only working spa in Ireland (once there were several) the mineral-rich waters (iron, iodine, sulphur, magnesium) are reputedly cures for disorders of the arthritis – rheumatism sorts when bathed in, and for internal disorders of the blood and glands when drunk. The spa centre has a pump room, baths and sauna among its attractions.

The existence of the mineral springs, and their reputed curative properties, led to Lisdoonvarna’s other claim to fame: its matchmaking tradition. Every year, in September (after the hay harvest was in), young (and not-very-young) farmers came to take the waters and, if single, find a bride. To facilitate the latter aim, professional matchmakers offered their services to these seekers, and for a few weeks the town enjoyed an almost twenty-four hour life. Today the tradition has been formalized into a matchmaking festival which is still held in September. The town has many hotels and restaurants to cater for this, and there is much merriment and jollification in the pubs during this period.

Lisdoonvarna has also been immortalised in song, by one of the most prolific and well known songwriters in Ireland, Christy Moore…Oooh Lisdoonvarna__, Lisdoon, lisdoon, lisdoon, lisdoonvarna…

Lisdoonvarna is also a good starting point from which to explore the southern edges of the Burren, a huge karst limestone region.

The town has recycling facilities for glass and drink cans.


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Other towns of County Clare

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Cliffs of Moher
Burren
Lough Atoric