The topic of the best places to stay in Ireland is one that causes a lot of heated debate online.
And, to be honest, you should treat every guide on where to stay in Ireland with a pinch of salt. Why? Well, because what one person thinks is amazing another might regard as just alright.
In this guide, we’re showing you what we think are the best places to stay in Ireland, but we’re focusing specifically on places that treat you to stunning views. Dive on in!
What we think are the best places to stay in Ireland with a view
The first section of our guide is packed with what we think are the top places to stay in Ireland, view-wise. These are places that one or more of our team have visited and have loved.
Note: if you book a stay through one of the links below we may make a tiny commission that helps us keep this site going. You won’t pay extra, but we really do appreciate it.
1. The Sandhouse Hotel
Set along the Wild Atlantic Way, in the town of Rossnowlagh, is where you’ll find the Sandhouse Hotel. With a superb beachfront setting, the views out across Rossnowlagh Beach and the Atlantic Ocean are truly stunning.
Watch the waves break from their elegantly appointed rooms, Standard, Deluxe, and Superior rooms all come with sea views, or book the Hill View room for beautiful hilltop views across Rossnowlagh.
The captivating sea views are also perfectly framed from the Glasshouse and Seashell restaurants, or Surfers and Durnish bars, no matter where you are at this hotel, you’ll get lost in the view. This is often regarded as one of the most scenic hotels in Ireland for good reason!
2. The Lake Hotel
On the pristine shores of Lough Leane, sits the four-star heart of Killarney, The Lake Hotel. Stately and imposing, the hotel rises from the shorefront and makes a commanding presence as it casts its watchful eyes over the serene waterway.
Surrounded by rising mountains to the distance, you’ll feel properly nestled in when you stay here, surveying the valley from your cosy and comfortable room. Each of the rooms is tastefully decorated, with either breath-taking lake views or enchanting woodland views, some also with four-poster beds.
For true opulence, reserve the Osprey Suite, and embrace the spellbinding views across the ruins of McCarthy Mor Castle. This is arguably one of the best places to stay in Ireland for couples if you’re after a few nights of chill time.
3. The Bayview Hotel
If saltwater runs through your veins, then you’re going to love staying at the Bayview – one of the more popular hotels by the sea in Ireland. With a commanding view across the ancient harbour or staring out across the Celtic Sea, let your imagination set sail as you take in the unending majesty.
35 spacious rooms, ranging from Standard rooms and special Seaview Rooms, or you can even stay in the exclusive Bayview Suite. Each room is appointed with everything you’ll need during your stay, including crisp cottons and en suites.
But, it’s the ocean views that make this one of the most scenic hotels in Ireland, and there’s one of those from each room in the hotel!
4. The Redcastle Hotel
Searching for peace, quiet, and an incredible view? Then look no further; the Redcastle Hotel is your next destination with its shorefront location near Redcastle, Co. Donegal and on the sea lough with the mouth of the River Foyle.
Luxurious rooms, fine dining, and unparalleled views are all waiting for you at Redcastle. This four-star hotel is the ideal location for those wanting to unwind, with its uninterrupted views of the tranquil waterway, and the rolling hills and plains with the nearby golf course.
Sink back into your superb and comfortable bed, or relax into the luxurious spa, and take in that incredible view while you peacefully float away.
5. Pax Guesthouse Dingle
Views of Dingle Harbour and its access to the North Atlantic Ocean await you from the rooms at Pax Guesthouse. Whether it’s the Snug bedrooms or Comfy rooms with sea views, your stay at Pax will be captivating from the moment you arrive.
From the guesthouse, you’ll be able to take in the sublime scenery of southwest Ireland, and some of the last rocky outcropping land seen by those who emigrated away to far-flung places.
Wrapped up in the mystery and romance of the sea, Pax Guesthouse is ideal for those seeking wilderness and also legendary hospitality and true Irish charm.
This is arguably one of the best places to stay in Ireland if you’re after exceptional service, stunning food and magnificent views.
6. Shearwater Country House
If you’re looking for nice places to stay in Ireland for couples, Shearwater in Union Hall in Cork is hard to beat from both a value and a views perspective.
Commanding beautiful views out over the water, Shearwater is exceptionally well priced. A weekend in July in a double room with a balcony and sea view with a brilliant breakfast will set you back just €210.
It’s located a short stroll from Dinty’s Pub where you’ll find some of the best Guinness in West Cork. This place is well worth checking out.
Where to stay in Ireland for stunning views and luxury
The second section of our guide is packed with the best places to stay in Ireland for couples looking for luxury and breath-taking views.
Below, you’ll find everywhere from 5-star escapes and boutique B&Bs to some wonderfully scenic hotels in Ireland.
1. The Cliff House Hotel
Regaled as one the finest luxury spa hotels in Ireland, the views alone are worth this hotels reputation. Set on a promontory in Ardmore, the hotel provides residents with masterful views out and across the ever-changing seas.
With private balconies, a private hotel pool that feels like it goes on forever thanks to the watery view, and al fresco dining, you’ll feel like you’re in the great outdoors without ever leaving the property.
Take in the summertime turquoise seas, or the turbulent and mysterious swells of winter as you relax in luxurious comfort and style, there’s nowhere you’d rather be, than here, life’s better by the sea.
2. Parknasilla Resort
Our next hotel is another of the best places to stay in Ireland for luxury and scenery. Make the trip to Parknasilla in Kerry and you’ll find the resort and spa of your dreams, with views that look like something from an oil painting.
With rooms and suites, courtyard lodges, and woodland villas all for you to choose from, each with its captivating view of the sea or countryside.
Float in the outdoor pool, and marvel as the sun and clouds move across and dapple the light on the sea lough’s surface. You’ll be so close to nature that it’s hard to believe there’s anything between you and that unending view.
3. Slieve Donard
Not far from Newcastle, and Tollymore Forest Park, the Slieve Donard sits on the edge of the Irish Sea in County Down. The four-star hotel takes pride of place in this small seaside town, and the views towards either the sea, the Royal County Down Golf Club course, or back towards the village are all breathtaking.
The very best in Victorian elegance and refinement is what you’ll find waiting for you at Slieve Donard, with spacious and luxurious rooms, the finest in dining, and well-appointed leisure facilities as to be expected – the view from the pool is incredible!
If you’re looking for top places to stay in Ireland a stone’s throw from endless hikes and walks, this is a great option, as the Mournes are very close by.
4. The Europe Hotel & Resort
Also located on the banks of Lough Leane in Killarney, the Europe Hotel and Resort is true to its name with European styling and attention to detail. Rooms with commanding views across the lough, spacious and luxuriant beds with leather Ottomans and fully tiled bathrooms all belie the understated elegance of the loughside setting.
Alfresco dining, or evening drinks on the terrace, a sunlit breakfast in the restaurant, or dinner as you watch the sun slowly set, it doesn’t matter what time of day it is, the scenery from this hotel is entirely captivating in its beauty.
This is arguably one of the best places to stay in Ireland for couples if you’re after a weekend of luxury (it’s one of the top 5 star hotels in Ireland for a reason!).
5. The Lost Cottage
Get lost in Co. Kerry’s rugged wilds and rolling hills, but not so lost that you can’t find your way home, to the Lost Cottage. Located near Glenbeigh, this small cottage is an idyllic escape for those wanting to embrace nature, as well as some creature comforts.
Underneath its red iron roof, you’ll find everything you need for a romantic weekend away, or escape with your family (of up to 4) and your urban life for the tranquillity of the Kerry countryside.
Surrounded by views of green farmland and cloud-covered mountains, you may never want to go back to your normal life. This is arguably one of the best places to stay in Ireland for couples, but keep in mind it’s on the pricier side.
6. Aghadoe Heights Hotel & Spa
Just a few minutes drive northwest of Killarney along the popular Ring of Kerry Route, this luxury hotel and resort offers residents everything they need for a relaxing escape, including breath-taking lake views and romantic landscapes of the county.
With picturesque views of Lough Leane and the rolling green Co. Kerry fields that surround Killarney, a stay at Aghadoe means escaping from the mundane into 5-star luxury and comfort.
Book a Lake Side King or Twin, the Superior Room with a garden view, or the Deluxe with lake view and let your imagination run wild as you take in the views of this beautiful country.
The best places to stay in Ireland for couples looking for unique accommodation
The next section of our guide to the best places to stay in Ireland is packed with unique accommodation with mighty views.
Below, you’ll find everywhere from Finn Lough and Chleire Haven to scenic hotels in Ireland that people often overlook.
1. Chleire Haven
If you’re looking for somewhere to go glamping in Ireland that’s anything but ordinary, then Chleire Haven on Cape Clear Island in Cork is the perfect respite.
It doesn’t come much more special, or scenic, than a yurt or bell tent on a small Irish island in the Atlantic Ocean. With captivating views that are absolutely spellbinding at sunrise and sunset, you’ll be sad to leave this island paradise.
From the private decking, or your yurt’s doorway, you’ll see rugged cliff faces, rolling mists and breaking waves, and all manner of native birdlife that call this island home.
2. Brandon House
You may recognise our next property from our guide to the most unique Airbnbs in Ireland. With its extraordinarily spacious, pared back living room, Brandon House in Tralee, County Kerry offers spectacular views of the peninsula and the surrounding hills and quiet countryside.
There are three bedrooms and three bathrooms, so the property sleeps seven. As the owners say, each window view offers a landscape painting and its seclusion and peacefulness make it a great place for those looking for an escape from the rat race.
If you’re planning on exploring the Wild Atlantic Way, it’s worth stopping here. Jutting out into the North Atlantic Ocean, the tiny promontory near Dunfanaghy is home to Breac.House, a wee hideaway on the headland, and your gateway to the incredible and scenic luxury.
Stare out across the valley from your deck, and slowly enjoy your morning coffee as the mists and clouds pass over the mighty Horn Head. You’ll also be able to take in the vistas towards Dunfanaghy Bay and New Lake or strike out for a walk to Tramore Beach, whichever way you look, imagination awaits.
4. The Dingle Skellig
With breathtaking views of the North Atlantic Ocean, and the majestic Dingle Harbour, it’s no wonder that the Dingle Skellig has an outstanding reputation not just for its hospitality, but also for its scenic setting.
Whether it’s the rolling green fields, or moody mountains and waves, the Dingle Skellig is sure to enchant all of your senses. Magical is about the only word you can use to describe the views from this hotel, especially from the in-house spa.
Sit back, or recline into one of their loungers, and let your worries drift away with the clouds that break over the serene Atlantic waves. It’s also known to be one of the best family hotels in Ireland.
5. The Shandon
Perched high on the hilly outcrop called Horn Head peninsula, the Shandon hotel is well known for its impressive views across Sheephaven Bay, and onto the North Atlantic Ocean. Nestled in your room or suite, it’s time to forget about the world, and relax into the view of Sheephaven Bay.
Go on and indulge yourself and book one of their restorative spa treatments, they’re worth it for the view alone, as it will surely sweep you away.
Look out across golden sands and summer-sky blue waters, or the carefully manicured emerald green lawns towards the rugged rocky coast. There are dramatic and daydream views at every turn at this hotel.
6. Clare Island Lighthouse
Taking ‘A room with a view’ to the extreme, this tiny island off the coast of Co. Mayo could just be the perfect romantic escape. Once you’ve left the Clare Island ferry, from Roonah Point, the island becomes your playground.
With two majestic hills that loom behind the lighthouse and the ruins of the historic abbey to explore, there are postcard-worthy scenes around every corner.
When it’s time to call it a day, then settle into your own private viewpoint from the Lighthouse and the Keeper’s home, and gaze across the rolling waves back to the mainland, or out towards the Americas.
Nice places to stay in Ireland with a view that won’t break the bank
The final section of our guide to the best places to stay in Ireland is packed with some of the better-value accommodation on offer.
Below, you’ll find everything from the Sneem Hotel and the Delphi Resort to some must stay hotels in Ireland with excellent reviews online.
1. Benbulben Farmhouse B&B
Breath-taking scenery needn’t break the bank, and staying at this Co. Sligo farmhouse B&B will certainly tick that box. Situated at the bottom of Benbulben, the mountain that looms up behind the farmhouse, it’s easy to see why this farmhouse has a reputation for dramatic scenery.
Each of the rooms, as well as the dining room, have unique views of the surrounding countryside, be that of the mountain, the farmland that falls away down the valley, or of the nearby trees and moor-like terrain, all of which change throughout the year and the weather with a magical kaleidoscope of colours.
This is arguably one of the best places to stay in Ireland if you’re looking to keep costs down but you still want top-notch service and breath-taking views.
2. Inchydoney Island Lodge
It might look and feel like an island, but the small Inchydoney Island is connected by land just south of Clonakilty, in Co. Cork. With two scenic sea loughs on either side of the island, and the spectacular Inchydoney Beach just to the northeast, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to land-based scenery.
But, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take advantage of the lodge’s sea views, as these are truly captivating. Cast your eyes out over the rocky outcrop and across the Celtic Sea, and it’s easy to let your mind set sail for distant places you’ve only dreamed of seeing.
3. Delphi Resort
Amidst the rugged mountains and wild hills, the deep valleys and trickling rivers and streams of Co. Galway, this exclusive location won’t break the bank even if it breaks your heart with its stunning scenery.
With a distinct eco-friendly vibe, this resort truly embraces the natural surroundings that hug its boundaries.
Stay within the 4-start Connemara hotel, or the Wild Atlantic hostel if you prefer, and you’ll be treated to a blissful night’s sleep and all the creature comforts you could want. Once recharged, you’ll be ready to appreciate the epic scenery of the idyllic valley location all the more.
4. Sneem Hotel
At the mouth of the River Sneem, just northwest of Parknasilla in Co. Kerry, you’ll find the quaint Sneem Hotel and its year-round picturesque scenery over Kenmare Bay and nearby mountains.
The hotel caters to those seeking a room with a view as well as excellence in comfort and style. Rooms can be booked with a mountain view, a standard sea view room, or splash out for a sea view balcony room and really embrace that scenery.
Understandably, all that nature gazing will make you hungry, so it’s just as well the Sneem Hotel restaurant serves meals every bit as stunning as the scenic setting. This place is an excellent option for thos eof you looking for nice places to stay in Ireland that don’t charge an arm and a leg.
5. Harbour View B&B
Head up the Kenmare Bay waterway towards Kenmare, and you’ll see the Harbour View B&B from the bay. This delightful and small B&B is located in the village of Dirreencallaugh and is well known for its idyllic setting as well as for its position for nature watchers.
Grab your binoculars or camera and tripod and settle yourself into this charming accommodation, and make the most of the opportunity.
With commanding views of the bay, along with all the waterway traffic, you’ll be in danger of getting whiplash as you try to take in the vistas from this place.
6. Connemara Sands Hotel
On the rugged and handsome western coast of Ireland, in Co. Galway, near the tiny village of Ballyconneely, sits the beautiful Connemara Sands Hotel. On this small outcrop that juts out into the North Atlantic Ocean, and just near the Connemara Championship Golf Links, is where you’ll find your hidden scenic paradise.
With beach views of not just rolling waves, but of romantic wind-swept dunes and rugged and desolate coastal moorland; Connemara Sands Hotel marries the feeling of an isolated island hideaway seamlessly with the beauty and charm of old school Irish country hospitality in this truly stunning location.
Something to keep in mind before booking into scenic hotels in Ireland
Hotels and guides on where to stay in Ireland, like ours, will always use photos that show off the property in its best light. However, it’s worth keeping in mind that not all rooms in the most scenic hotels in Ireland will offer stunning views.
It’s often the case that these rooms come at a premium, so don’t assume that if you just hit ‘book now’ that you’ll be placed in the room you’ve seen advertised.
It’s always worth checking to see that the room you’re booking is the one with the view (on Booking.com you can see the room type if you scroll to the end of the page).
FAQs about the top places to stay in Ireland
We’ve had a lot of questions over the years asking about everything from ‘What are some nice places to stay in Ireland for couples?’ to ‘Where to stay in Ireland with a great view without having to spend a fortune?’.
In the section below, we’ve popped in the most FAQs that we’ve received. If you have a question that we haven’t tackled, ask away in the comments section below.
What are the best places to stay in Ireland for views?
Personally, I think it’s hard to beat the Bayview Hotel, the Lake Hotel and the Sandhouse Hotel.
What are the most scenic hotels in Ireland?
The best place to stay in Ireland scenery wise is The Cliff House, with The Europe coming in at a close second.
Tuesday 8th of February 2022
Thank you for all of the recommendations, but yes, still so hard to figure out where to go. We are going in the fall for a week with another couple (50 years old). We think we will fly into Dublin. We thought we’d stay 2 nights in Dublin, 2 nights in Killarney or Cork, 2 nights in Galway and then back to Dublin for a night (to fly out to London for a week, the next day). I am entirely open to a different itinerary. The others are wanting to enjoy the beauty, shopping, pubs, cliffs, Ring of Kerry, Aran Islands, etc. I would be extremely appreciative if you had time to offer any insight. Thank you.
Monday 18th of May 2020
Another fabulous place is the Bellbridge Hotel Spanish Point.The beach is across the road.We are regular visitors to this Hotel for the food and staff.
Saturday 4th of April 2020
We stayed at The Waters Country House in Newtown, Ballyvaughan, Co. Clare. Lovely hosts. Good location - an hour (?) south of Galway. A few little “cottages“ have water features - gentle sounds while enjoying the rain! Great breakfast. We wished we had stayed longer! (I’m so enjoying all your recommendations - planning a trip for Sept. ‘21.) Stay healthy and be safe.
Thursday 14th of November 2019
Doonmore Hotel, Inishbofin, Co. Galway is hard to beat.
Sunday 17th of November 2019
Thanks for the recommendation, Andrew. I'm due to update this guide soon - I'll have to check out Doonmore!
Wednesday 17th of July 2019
Doolin Coastal Cottages has great views including the Aran Islands!
Friday 19th of July 2019
Cheers for the recommendation Rikki!