Loop Head Lighthouse Shines a Light on Summer

Loop Head Lighthouse Shines a Light on Summer


Loop Head Lighthouse in County Clare. Pic Valerie O'Sullivan Record numbers of people are visiting Loop Head Lighthouse in County Clare. Figures for the period April 3rd to August 31st show that 23,000 people visited the West Clare visitor attraction, a 13% increase on the entire figure for 2014. 47.5% of the total visitor figure up to Sunday, August 30th, is represented by Irish visitors, with Germany, North America, UK, France and Italy collectively accounting for 42.2% of the overall figure.  The historic landmark commenced its 5th year of operations when it reopened to the public in early April.  Clare County Council, which manages Loop Head Lighthouse in conjunction with the Commissioners of Irish Lights (CIL), says the facility will remain open daily (10am-6pm) until 4th October 2015. For the first time meanwhile, the attraction will be opened to the public during weekends in October. Commenting on the 2015 visitor season to date, Councillor James Breen, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council said: "The 19th century West Clare landmark is certainly benefiting from its designation as a Signature Discovery Point on the Wild Atlantic Way and as one of the Great Lighthouses of Ireland. As in previous years, its growing popularity as a visitor attraction is providing a significant boost to economic activity in the wider area." Gerard Dollard, Director of Services, Clare County Council, noted the continued strong performance of the domestic visitor market and the German market, in particular. The Council has worked with all parties locally and nationally to build tourism product at Loop head to such an extent that the Loop is now regarded as an attraction of national status," stated Mr. Dollard.  "The economic benefit to the area has been obvious. The challenge now is to continue to expand and further market the product on the wider Loop Head Peninsula to increase the length of stay in the area. The tourism market is performing exceptionally well at present and the indi
Loop Head Lighthouse in County Clare. Pic Valerie O’Sullivan

West Clare’s maritime history and unique landscape will be showcased this May Bank Holiday Weekend through its status as one of the Great Lighthouses of Ireland.

From this Saturday (30 April) to Monday (2nd May), a flagship festival will take place at 8 of the 12 Great Lighthouses of Ireland, an all-island tourism initiative that also includes lighthouses at Hook Head in Wexford, Valentia Island in Kerry and Donegal’s Fanad Head.

Loop Head will this weekend offer family-friendly events that include tours, storytelling and a local food and craft showcase. On Bank Holiday Monday, a guided walk will be hosted along the Peninsula from 11am while there will be food-tasting stalls from 12 noon until 2pm.

Martin Gleeson, Supervisor for Loop Head Lighthouse said, “This three-day weekend festival celebrates the best of Loop Head’s stunning coastline through a series of events and workshops.”

“The public will be able to enjoy the stories of our maritime past, explore the tower to discover its hidden secrets, get tips on being safe and enjoying our coast this summer, and hear from experts from the Commissioners of Irish Lights (CIL) about how navigation at sea works and about the technology at work in the Lighthouse,” he added.

Clare County Council, which manages the Lighthouse in conjunction with the CIL, reopened the popular visitor attraction for the 2016 tourist season in March. The Lighthouse, which is steeped in history and rich in maritime heritage with its origins dating back to the 1670s, is a landmark location on the Loop Head Heritage Trail. It is also one of two Signature Discovery Points in County Clare along the route of the Wild Atlantic Way.

Visit www.greatlighthouses.com for more on this weekend’s events at Loop Head Lighthouse.