With miles and miles of rugged coastline, sandy beaches and gorgeous walking trails, there’s no better way to experience the unspoilt beauty of Donegal than a weekend away in a luxury golf or spa hotel.
What could be a nicer way end to a day spent exploring the Bluestack Mountains than a spell in the sauna, or taking in the scenic views on one of the superb links courses followed by a full carvery and creamy pint?
A spa hotel in Donegal that’s also a castle
Secretly feel like you deserve to be treated like royalty? Then check into this gorgeous 17th-century castle; tucked away in a secluded lakeside estate on the shores of Lough Eske, Lough Eske Castle is the only 5-star hotel in the county.
We especially love the restored suites, such as the charming Courtyard rooms that were converted from stables. Think sandstone floors, four-poster beds and bathrooms with wood paneling, marble tiling and double basin vanity units.
You can’t stay at Lough Eske without paying a visit to the spa, located in the castle garden near the famous Blue Stack Mountains. The thermal suite’s facilities are second-to-none, be it the ice fountain, tropical experience showers or infinity pool.
A golf hotel in Donegal with a private 9-hole parkland course
On the shore of Lough Foyle in Inishowen, this upscale golf resort and spa blends the contemporary and the traditional, with original 18th century features and luxury mod cons.
Make the most of Inishowen’s gorgeous coastline with a round of golf on Redcastle Oceanfront’s private 9-hole parkland course. Then why not grab a newspaper and a pint in the cosy Captain’s Bar overlooking the green?
As well as featuring a swimming pool, sauna and steam room, the hotel also boasts a beauty treatment room where you can get a spray tan and gel nails, while the spa offers holistic therapies like reflexology and Indian head massages.See price
A spa hotel in Donegal near a golf club
With spectacular panoramic views over Malin Head, Ireland’s most northerly point, this charming family-run spa hotel is set in Inishowen near the golden sands of Pollan Bay and Ballyliffin Golf Club.
The rooms at Ballyliffin Lodge & Spa are elegantly decorated and feature spacious ensuite bathrooms. Upgrading to a Superior Room gets you spectacular sea views, or the Executive Suite boasts a magnificent in-room Jacuzzi and double shower.
Check out the full-service Rock Crystal Spa for facials, body wraps, scrubs, and massages all using the luxury Irish product range Voya. As well as an indoor swimming pool, there’s also a 12-seater hot tub, steam room, sauna and hair salon.See price
A spa hotel in Donegal near the links courses
Get ready to take in Donegal’s stunning surroundings at the 4-star Harvey’s Point. Tee off at the nearby Donegal links courses, explore the picturesque walking trails or try your hand at surfing at Murvagh and Rossnowlagh.
The suites at Harvey’s Point promise real luxury, whether you go Executive, Deluxe, Premium, Lakeshore or Penthouse. Get ready to lap up gorgeous amenities like private balconies, whirlpool bathtubs for two and even your own personal bar.
There is also a treatment and relaxation room where a range of beauty treatments are available, such as hot stone massages and facials. Gwyneth Paltrow and Natalie Portman are supposedly fans of the organic wellness brand Ila, so you know you’re getting the star treatment.See price
A spa hotel in Donegal with a 17-metre pool
Situated right in the heart of Letterkenny, County Donegal, this modern spa hotel is the perfect base for exploring the nearby golf courses, beaches and countryside.
The rooms at Radisson Blu Letterkenny are sleek, contemporary and stylish. Treat yourself to a night or two in the Executive Suite, furnished with an elegant four-poster bed dressed in Egyptian cotton and squashy leather couches in the separate seating area, while the bathroom features stunning Italian marble.
After a day of exploring, unwind at the hotel’s leisure centre, boasting a 17-metre heated swimming pool, sauna and steam room. Bit of a water baby? Then try out the hotel’s great selection of aqua classes, suited to all fitness levels.See price
A family-run spa hotel in Donegal
Located in Ballybofey, this beautiful family-run spa hotel is ideal for a romantic escape or a spa break for you and the girls.
Special occasion? Then splash out on the Archway suite at Villa Rose Hotel, with its round four-poster bed, giant flat screen TV and luxurious whirlpool – and to top it all off, why not order room service for the ultimate indulgence?
The thermal suite at the V Spa is exquisite, boasting tropical showers and ice fountains, and there are seven treatment rooms where you can splurge on deluxe chocolate body wraps and facials. You can also pay a visit to the salon for make-up, nails and hair styling if you want to go all out.
A spa hotel in Donegal’s Gaeltacht
Central to many of Donegal’s best natural attractions and known as a bastion of Gaelic heritage and culture, Gweedore (Gaoth Dobhair) is not to be missed.
Nestled at the heart of the parish and just a short drive from the coast is this stylish spa hotel, Gweedore Court Hotel.
While the rooms in this hotel are all elegantly furnished, the real focus is the food: the hotel boasts an extensive menu of delicious meals made from locally-sourced ingredients.See price