Suggested cruising options Banagher*
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One week
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Athlone, Clonmacnoise

112 km KM
from 1723 EUROS**
* Cruise suggestions: non contractual information
** All prices are calculated on the basis of a two day weekend in low season.
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Description of
the boating holiday

A boating holiday to the dynamic city of Athlone

Travel up the River Shannon and immerse yourself in the world of the first Irish Christians at the monastery of Clonmacnoise. Continue to Athlone and continue until you reach the wide expanses of Lough Ree.

Departure base

In the centre of Ireland between Galway and Dublin and in County Offaly is Banagher. The village is the starting and end point for many boating holidays on the River Shannon. While here make the most of the convenience store to stock up on groceries and provisions to take on board your canal boat before heading off along the waterways.

Banagher may be relatively small, but it's still very much alive: sip a pint of local beer at the Railway Bar or the JJ Houghs Singing Pub, while listening to traditional music, and learn to toast in Gaelic ("Sláinte"). As you walk through Banagher, cross the stone bridge and pass in front of the Martello Tower, built in the 19th century to protect the city from a possible French invasion.

Places to see and things to do

Clonmacnoise: 1,500 years of history

Located along the River Shannon, Clonmacnoise is a place not to be missed during your boating holiday. Also called the Seven Churches, this monastery was founded in 544 and quickly became one of Ireland's most famous religious sites. Wander among the ruins and try to identify all the buildings, try to decipher the tombstones and observe the detail of the Celtic crosses. Don't miss the door of murmurs, where fishermen could confess during the epidemic of yellow plague without risk of contamination. Try and test its acoustics by whispering while stood at the level of the door to the right and listen as the sound goes up along the arch to the ear of a listener over on the left side!

Athlone: a dynamic city on the banks of the Shannon

Life is in full swing in Athlone, the largest town on the banks of the River Shannon. In Athlone, shopping lovers will be happy! There is also something here for the whole family… don't miss a visit to the castle, which will take you back 800 years via several exhibitions and fun experiences. Then go admire the stained glass windows of the church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul. Finally, your boating holiday in Ireland wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Sean's Bar - holder of the title of being the oldest pub in Ireland!

Lough Ree: hikes and islands for adventure

At a vast 105km², Lough Ree is especially popular with fishermen, but also offers a large number of other activities to be enjoyed such as Liliput Way hiking trail, holy well of Saint Faithleach, Rathcline castle and cemetery with its Celtic crosses. However, the island of Inchcleraun wins the title of the most popular tourist attraction of the lake with its 6th century monastery classified as a "national monument" by the Republic of Ireland. The island appears in a Celtic legend according to which Medb, warrior queen of the province of Connacht, was murdered there by a man armed with a slingshot... and a piece of cheese!

After exploring Lough Ree, turn your canal boat around and return to Banagher for the end of your boating holiday.

Canal boats available

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Holiday reviews from Banagher

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What we loved was deciding where to visit as we went along – sometimes even according to the advice given to us by the friendly locals we’d met. Whether we were in a pub, an inn or a restaurant, we were always provided with a recommendation of a little secret corner or a visit off the beaten track. This is what made our boating holiday magical.

Colette, Lille (59)