Ireland itself is arguably one of the most romantic countries on the planet with an endless list of alluring travel destinations. But what about romantic Airbnbs to complete the experience for an especially unforgettable couples’ stay? You’ll find everything from castles and historic churches to charming cottages and even boats for rent, with these picks pretty much guaranteed to spark romance.
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Located near the West Cork town of Clonakilty, the Galley Head Lighthouse was the most powerful lighthouse light in the world in 1875. It witnessed the sinking of the Lusitania in 1915 and kept watch over military vessels during the First and Second world wars. Guests stay in the Galley Head Lightkeepers’ Houses which sit atop dramatic cliffs overlooking St George’s Channel below the lighthouse tower, providing a unique and memorable romantic stay. As one can imagine, the views are absolutely jaw-dropping.
The Blasket Islands off the coast of County Kerry near Dingle make a great day trip, but now you can stay on Great Blasket too. The island covers 1,100 acres with largely unspoiled mountainous terrain, gorgeous beaches and an abundance of wildlife and fauna, providing a fabulously romantic, secluded retreat. The Great Blasket Cottage is a private 2-bedroom cottage that’s ideal for an ultra-romantic stay – there is no electricity but you’ll find candles and head torch lights along with two stoves that provide heat and additional lighting.
While you’ve probably not even considered staying in a church, this one is quite a bit different. The historic, restored 200-year-old church is located in Athenry, about 15 miles east of the ancient walled city of Galway while being within an easy day trip of attractions like the Cliffs of Moher and Connemara National Park. The stone building has a hall with large Gothic windows and a bell-tower that stands out as a local landmark. You’ll get your own private room with two beds and a bathroom, along with a complimentary continental breakfast and plenty of warm Irish hospitality.
Another very unique romantic stay is available right in the center of Galway City on Lough Atalia, a protected inlet off Galway Bay. You’ll spend the night in a moored historic Dutch barge which recently underwent extensive renovations to provide a luxurious, comfortable stay. It’s off-grid, using a combination of wind, solar and an onboard generator to provide energy for the basics. It includes a lounge with a wood or turf burning stove (turf supplied), a large kitchen, dining area, bedroom and large bathroom with both a bath and shower.
If you love the romantic look of an Irish cottage, you’ll love this Airbnb. Built in 1844, it’s an authentic traditional white-washed cottage with a thatch roof set across nearly two acres overlooking the sea. It’s located on the largest of the three Aran Islands, Inishmore which offers an Old World Irish atmosphere, picturesque landscapes, a maze of stone walls and fascinating archaeological sites to explore. In town, there are plenty of pubs for enjoying live music after dark before returning to your cozy abode.
Blackwater is an authentic medieval castle and you can enjoy it all to yourself by booking through Airbnb. It sits on a 50-acre private wooded estate with a river running through, about a 5-minute walk from the heritage village of Castletownroche, in North Cork. You’ll be the Lord and Lady of your own castle that boasts some 10,000 years of history and sleeps as many as 25 in nine suites with 13 beds and a dozen bathrooms. There’s also a private bar and a fully-equipped kitchen.
The Cuckoo Wood Hexagon feels like a treehouse for grownups, tucked among orchards and woodland just outside the picturesque town of Westport. Step out your door and you’ll find a deck ideal for enjoying quiet contemplation as you’ll be immersed in silence that’s only broken by the songs of the birds, while the river is less than 700 feet away. Inside there’s lots of natural light, a kitchen and a wood stove. Nearby enjoy scenic walks, cycling the Great Western Greenway and horseback rides at the edge of the Atlantic.
Located in the heart of the gorgeous Connemara region, Abbeyglen Castle Hotel sits against a mountainous backdrop and provides a unique Airbnb castle stay. Look forward to beautiful views and luxury accommodation at reasonable prices. Everything from classic to lavish rooms with four-poster beds, Jacuzzis and fireplaces can be booked. Guests are greeted by the castle’s friendly parrot and enjoy a welcome champagne reception. The award-winning on-site restaurant serves an extensive breakfast buffet and delicious dinners featuring local seafood and Connemara lamb. There’s also a piano bar for enjoying music-filled evenings.
Offering one of the best views of the dazzling Kerry coast on Valentia Island near the tiny village of Portmagee, the Boat House is a 250-year-old natural stone building that sits right on the beach. It has a huge window for awe-inspiring views no matter what the weather. Gaze out at the endless turquoise sea, the lighthouse and Beginish Island, and, when there’s a storm you can cuddle up together to watch the waves crash upon the shore. The house is part of Glanleam Estate which includes 40 acres of sub-tropical gardens, woodlands, a healing well and an ancient healing energy point. There are Connemara ponies, lots of sheep, donkeys, chickens, geese and other animals too.
This stone cottage sits on the stunning Dingle Peninsula, surrounded by lush green hills, rugged cliffs and the crashing waves of the Atlantic. One of the most romantic and peaceful places to stay, you’ll be able to enjoy glorious sunsets and dark, starry skies while letting the sounds of the ocean lull you to sleep. While the cottage offers seclusion and tranquility, you’ll be just 10 miles from the town of Dingle, famous for its pubs, many of which host nightly live music.