Bantry, a friendly town at the base of the Beara Penninsula in County Cork, is near Sheeps Head Peninsula and Mizen Head, all three of which are popular (but not overcrowded) places that attract visitors, especially in the summer. It is not too difficult to reach Bantry by bus or by car, but when you are coming to stay at a Bantry hostel, but be educated about connections and the different bus routes to make your journey as efficient as possible. If you have a car, be sure to take a drive on the Ring of Beara -- Healy Pass is especially beautiful by car. Mizen Head is farther south, but also worth making a trip to visit if you can get there. There is a lighthouse and you can see where the lighthouse keeper and his family lived. Nearby are some wonderful beaches (like many other beaches on the west coast of Ireland, they are sandy and popular).
The Bantry House is an old Georgian Mansion, worth visiting if you are interested in art or tapestries or old historical houses. For archaeological interests, look to the megalithic sites. There are plenty of stone circles near Bantry -- Kilnaruane Pillar Stone, Kealhil Stone Circle, Breenymore Megalithes, and Ahaista Stone Circle are some of the closer and more popular ones. Castle Donovan is in ruins, but is still quite intriguing.
There is a post office, an ATM, and a Supervalue for cheaper food options. There are a few pubs in Bantry that are worth visiting -- Crowleys and the Anchor Tavern seem to have the best music and the best reputations. Nightlife isn’t too exciting here, and it ends fairly early (like other small towns in Ireland), but the locals are friendly and welcoming.
Hi, I'm Emily Schreiber,
the Hostelz.com local expert for Bantry hostels. Welcome.