Last Updated: 1st September, 2018
Famous in song, Bantry in West Cork Ireland is of legendary beauty. Bantry located at the mouth of Bantry Bay, was twice entered by French fleets in 1689 to support James II against William of Orange, in 1796 to aid Wolfe Tone and an Irish uprising. Astorm dispersed the 1796 fleet and few of the ships made the Bay.
Bantry, at the head of the bay, is a busy market town and fishing port. The town offers numerous activities for our visitors, including 2 golf courses, Bantry Golf Club, an 18-hole course designed by Christy O'Connor Jnr., and Glengarriff. For the best in West Cork walking, cycling, fishing, West Cork sailing and water sports or for just relaxing, Bantry and the South-West has always been one of the most popular tourist destinations. Explore some of Bantry's history with a trip to nearby Carriganass Castle and the stone circle at Kealkill.
There is an abundance of award winning restaurants in Bantry town centre, situated around the Wolf Tone plaza. Take some time to explore Bantry Town and take a leisurely walk around, walk up town to Bridge Street to see the old Water Wheel by the Library. To complete your visit to Bantry a tour of the magnificent Bantry House, is a must.
Bantry House, is spectacularly situated and exuberantly furnished. It is one of Ireland's most attractive Great Houses, full of treasures collected by various generations of Earls of Bantry from all parts of the world. In the courtyard of Bantry House, The French Armada Exhibition Centre has been developed This features the ill-fated French Armada invasion of December, 1796. Explore the beautiful gardens also on the grounds of Bantry House.
After leaving Bantry House turn right and drive for approx 3 km where you take a right turn on to the Sheep's Head Peninsula where you can enjoy numerous walks including the well know Sheep's Head Walk Way. Bantry can be accessed by bus from Cork or Kerry or if you are using your own transport from Cork you will pass through Clonakilty, Rosscarbery, Skibbereen, Ballydehob and then Bantry and on the other side you have Glengarriff and on through the Beara area to Kenmare in Co Kerry, so you can be into another county in Ireland in no time and take in some stunning scenery and walking areas along the way.
If you would like to explore one of West Cork's Islands a ferry leaves Bantry pier for Whiddy Island and takes just 10 or 15 minutes over by boat, explore Whiddy Island by foot or bicycles can be hired while there.
There is a tourist office located at the East end of Bantry town for any maps or brochures you may require on Bantry and its surrounding area. Bantry Accommodation is available in the local Bed & Breakfasts and Bantry Hotels, Westlodge Hotel, The Maritime Hotel, and Bantry House.