The Cliffs of Moher
Have you been to the Cliffs of Moher? If not, then when you’re planning your trip to Ireland then put this on your “must-do” list. This is one of those places in the world that takes your breath away. I’ve been to some amazing places such as Machu Picchu, Grand Canyon and a couple of other similar attractions, and I’d put this up there with those for the WOW! factor.
When you get to the cliffs, you’ll park nearby and have a short walk to the cliffs, first passing by the Visitor Center which is a pretty cool little place set inside a grassy hill. You can stop here to get something to eat or drink, and maybe even a little souvenir of your trip to the west coast of Ireland.
A sign at the cliffs - Don't be this person!
Coming out of the Visitor Center, you’ll turn to the right and walk up a small hill towards the cliffs. Head right from there and you will find yourself at O’Brien’s Tower which is one of the best points to take in the scenery both to the north and south. If you had turned left before going towards O’Brien’s Tower, then you will find yourself walking out along a very scenic pathway along the edge of the cliffs. Private land owners have signs regarding trespassing rules etc, but any time I’ve been there it seems few people take little notice of them, but decide for yourself. If you do decide to walk anywhere near the cliffs edge, then be sure to take extra care. One slip is one too many, because there are no protective barriers to stop you going on a very rapid free-fall.
On a clear day, you can really enjoy the expanse of the cliffs and the magnificent views up there. The cliffs reach a height of 702 feet (214m) and stretch along the west coast of Ireland for approximately 5 miles (8km). Looking westward you will have a view of the Aran Islands and you’ll also be able to enjoy views of some of the beautiful Co. Clare and Co. Galway mountains. Gazing out over the ocean, from the top of the cliffs, is one of those memorable breathtaking experiences that is hard to describe in words. It feels like your at the edge of the world.
View looking to the south
If you are brave enough to get close to the edge, the view down to the waves, crashing off the cliff face, is spectacular. And if you are a bird enthusiast there is a very active seabird colony who nest on the cliff face. Take your binoculars with you if you have some, because this is one of those sights where their use will definitely enhance your viewing experience.
Everything you’ll need to know about how to get to the cliffs, prices, the facilities there etc, can be found here, at the official Cliffs of Moher website. They also have virtual tours on their site, but to fully appreciate the cliffs, you should try to make a trip there.
So how do you get there? Well of course you can drive yourself and get directions as you normally might. But to make it easy for you, so you can sit back and enjoy the ride and the sights along the way, there are plenty of tour operators that have buses that go to the cliffs. You can find that information on the official website. You can also take public transportation to get to the cliffs. This may include a train and/or bus ride. Again, you can find that information on the website.
One other way you can get to the cliffs is by taking a cruise on Aran Ferries. This is something I have not yet done, but I am considering it for my next trip. I can only imagine how spectacular the view looking up at the cliffs from below must be. Take a look at their website for information on how to book their tour, and there you will also see some pictures and a YouTube clip of the tour.
O'Brien's Tower and the sea stack below
For those of you with a few extra dollars/Euros in your pocket, then another option for enjoying the breathtaking views and splendor of the Cliffs of Moher is to take a helicopter tour with Galway Helicopters. They’ll take you from the shores of Galway bay south towards the cliffs, while taking in the Burren and Aran Islands along the way.
My personal tip before you go: If your schedule allows, then try to be flexible in going there on a day when the weather is expected to be good. You will thank yourself for it
I would like to add a word about conservation. The following section is taken from cliffsofmoher.ie. It is something they encourage, and I do too.
We encourage visitors to the Cliffs of Moher to abide by the 7 principles of Leave No Trace which are
- Plan ahead & Prepare
- Be Considerate of Others
- Respect Farm Animals & Wildlife
- Travel & Camp on Durable Ground
- Leave What You Find
- Dispose of Waste Properly
- Minimise the Effects of Fire
Thanks for reading. I hope you’ve enjoyed the information I’ve provided, and I hope you feel encouraged to visit our beautiful Cliffs of Moher.
Got a travel tip or story you’d like to share about County Clare of the Cliffs of Moher? Why not add it to the comments below…