Things To Do
Whether you are visiting for an hour or a few, taking a day trip or planning a longer stay, County Roscommon offers a wealth of experiences and fun to suit all ages and interests! We are happy to help you plan your trip to Rathcroghan and beyond. You can also visit www.roscommon.ie for a comprehensive listing of events, activities and accommodation across the County of Roscommon.
Don’t know where to start? Our sample itineraries below, offer something for the heritage lover, archaeology explorers, and family fun seekers!
Roscommon Heritage Trail
Immerse yourself in the past of this great County. Explore Roscommon’s illustrious story by visiting three award-winning attractions which chart the changes in Roscommon life through the millennia.
Begin at Rathcroghan Visitor Centre and be taken on a journey back to the earliest peoples who sustained themselves on the fertile limestone plains of mid-Roscommon. Be regaled with the epic legends and wowed by the unique archaeological landscape which we call Rathcroghan, while following a journey from early prehistory through to the late medieval period. Explore our museum and interpretive rooms or take a tour with one of our archaeologist guides and allow us to paint a picture of the ancient capital of Connacht.
Enter the modern era as you travel east to the historic town of Strokestown. In the estate house of the Packenham Mahon family you will find Strokestown Park and Famine Museum, which catalogues the society of rural Ireland in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Explore the ‘Big House’, the beautiful gardens, as well as interacting with the thoughtful exhibits that tell the painful story of Ireland’s Great Famine, an Gorta Mhór.
From Strokestown, travel to Arigna Mountain and Arigna Mining Experience, to experience the life of a miner in these coal-rich hills. Be guided through the shafts of one company’s mine by a retired miner, hear their stories and see the dangerous work that these brave miners engaged in, to provide for their families.
Live Like A King Experience
The kings of medieval Connacht have walked Rathcroghan and Carnfree for hundreds of years, their descendants and their homes, can still be visited today!
Why not combine a full-day experience at Rathcroghan Visitor Centre, experiencing the landscape and stories of the Gaelic O’Conor kings of Connacht, seeing where they inaugurated their kings, and understanding how they achieved their power and wealth, with a visit, and perhaps an overnight stay, at an ancestral home of the O’Conor’s, the 19thcentury Italianate mansion of Clonalis House in Castlerea.
Roscommon – An archaeologist’s dream
Roscommon, an unspoilt agricultural county, has through its traditional pastoral practices retained the wealth of cultural heritage that other counties can only envy at.
A trip through the county will enable you to see vast Anglo-Norman castles, beautiful abbeys and friaries, prehistoric monuments and Gaelic strongholds.
Rathcroghan is one of the largest archaeological landscapes in Europe, possessing 240 archaeological sites, spanning a staggering 5,500 years.
This was the focal point for the entire territory of Connacht in times past, and the story of Rathcroghan is the story of Connacht.
Leaving Rathcroghan, you can partake of a self-guided visit to castles such as Roscommon Castle and Rindoon Castle and medieval town. Explore the peaceful religious houses of Roscommon Abbey or Clontuskert Priory. Explore Lough Key, and its famous Rock, a stronghold of the MacDermot lords of Moylurg, or visit the enigmatic late prehistoric La Téne carved stone at Castlestrange. Everywhere you look in this county, you will uncover heritage gems that will take you back, face to face, with our ancestors in this land, a truly unique experience.
County Roscommon offers a vast array of activities to keep all the family entertained! Roscommon boasts the longest River Shannon shoreline, spanning over 140 km, making it the ideal County to experience the River Shannon and all it has to offer. Visitors can enjoy water-based activities from fishing and boating, inflatable water parks to kayaking and SUPing! Why not spend the morning with us here at Connacht’s ancient capital and the afternoon enjoying the many water and land-based sports and activities on our doorstep!
For the land lovers Lough Key Forest Park, truly offers everything for the family from a camping and caravan park to Ireland’s only tree top walk, to boat cruises on the River Shannon to leisurely strolls around the grounds of Forest Park. For the more adventurous a visit to an inflatable waterpark such as Shannon River Adventure or Baysports offers the perfect fun filled afternoon!
For further information and to assist you in planning your trip to Rathcroghan and beyond, please contact us 071 963 9268 or email [email protected].
- Christa N
Standing on the site of such an important and pivotal place in Ireland's ancient history was a humbling experience. Add to that the incredible care taken by the knowledgeable ... read more
- Ann H
The visitors center here is built with nothing but what tourists can buy. However, the food and gift shop was quite good. It was a good place to relax after... read more
Visited this interpretive centre and site on the way back from Sligo. Very impressed with the centre - it is small but very well designed and has something for... read more
My husband, 3 and 5 year old visited Rathcroghan visitor centre last Saturday. We had a fantastic day there. The centre itself has a nicely sized museum with lots of... read more
Excellent tour with Mike our guide highly recommended went down into the cave of cats the birthplace of Halloween. Superb stories so well told managed to keep my 6 and... read more
Tuesday morning. We had a wonderful Irish breakfast at the lovely cafe in the centre. I booked the guided tour for 12 noon the next day. Arrived at 11.30 am... read more
We spent several hours with our guide, Elaine, who was incredibly knowledgeable about Celtic history and folklore. It was fun to begin our trip to Ireland by learning so much... read more
- Alison R
This Visitors Centre is a real find for anyone interested in the Celts and the Iron Age or generally any aspect of Ireland's rural heritage. I was so impressed with... read more
This site is nominated as a Unesco World Heritage Site for a reason. This is the epicenter of the greatest oral epic in Irish History - Ireland's equivalent of the... read more
Our visit to Rathcroghan combined myth, history and archeology to provide a wonderful appreciation of this exceptional site. Our guide, Mike, gave us a lively account of the Táin and... read more