Abbeyglen Castle Hotel

Sky Rd., Clifden, Co. Galway, Ireland

Creeper covered, as if under a Sleeping Beauty spell, the gorgeous Victorian castle-manor of Abbeyglen sits framed by towering trees on a height above Clifden town—if time hasn't completely stopped here, it has certainly slowed down, but that's just the way the relaxed guests want it. Surrounded by gardens with waterfalls and streams, Abbeyglen was built in 1832 by John D'Arcy, the founder of Clifden. Inside, guest rooms vary in size and design, some with wooden floors, some with gas fireplaces, some with four-poster beds. Insist on a front room when booking if you enjoy great views. Even though it's a castle, it is also a fun place to stay, owned by the famously hospitable Hughes brothers, Paul and Brian. Complimentary afternoon tea is served in the bar, effortlessly giving way to evening drinks, as the piano player strikes up. Beware Gilbert the parrot, who has the run of reception: he wolf-whistles, but he also bites.


  • laid-back, easygoing atmosphere
  • pleasantly homey for all its grandeur
  • friendly hosts and staff


  • uphill walk back from Clifden


Phones: 095-21201


33 rooms, 9 suites
Rate Includes: Closed Jan. and Feb. Some meals