14. Rossnowlagh Beach

I’m going to start here with a caveat. If you want a nice peaceful beach walk then you need to choose your visit to Rossnowlagh carefully. This lovely little resort is a magnet for holidaymakers in summer and also has a large caravan and holiday home population. The beach will be very crowded on summer weekends. My nicest (pre Covid) trips to Rossnowlagh have been on a midweek morning in summer or in the off season, even in winter. On a bright winter’s day with a low tide you can set off from the car park beside the Sand House Hotel and walk for as far as you can towards Murvagh point.

On the N15 travelling south from Donegal Town look for the turn for Rossnowlagh (R 231) at a junction that also serves Ballintra. Turn left onto the R231 and continue for approx. 5.3 km. After a couple of bad bends you will come to a short straight with a left turn for Rossnowlagh. Its only a half km from there to the sea front. Cars are permitted on the beach but it is best to park in the small car park to the left of the Sand House hotel. There is a pedestrian path down onto the beach beside the vehicle ramp. Turn left and away you go! How far you walk depends on your time and ability, but be aware of the tide that can come in quite far up the beach. Don’t forget you have to walk the same distance back!!

  • Trailhead: Car park beside the Sand House hotel in the resort.
  • Facilities: Two well maintained portaloos at the car park.
  • Distance: Variable – there and back walk.
  • Time: 40 min to 1.5 hours depending on tide and ability
  • Ascent: None