Lisfannon to Muff
This Donegal Wild Atlantic Way road trip from Lisfannon to Muff on the Inishowen Peninsula is the final (or initial) stretch of the Wild Atlantic Way, depending on which way you wish to travel the WAW.
The Wild Atlantic Way map below takes you past and through some of the Discovery Points along the Wild Atlantic Way, including Dunree Head, the Gap of Mamore, Polland Strand, Inishowen Head and some beautiful beaches.
The Wild Atlantic Way Signature Point of Malin Head, known from the daily shipping weather forecasts, and the most Northerly part of Ireland, is also on this route.
There are some other sights to see along the route, such as Glenevin Waterfall and Dunree and Malin Heads are also worth spending some time at.
Finish your Wild Atlantic Way journey at Muff, which as you would expect in Ireland, does have its own diving club where you can become a lifetime member 😊.
I hope you have enjoyed travelling these trip routes, whether you have done it in person or from the comfort of your own chair at home, and have appreciated some of the astounding beauty that is the West Coast of Ireland.
When you finish this route, head into Northern Ireland and enjoy the Causeway Coastal Route to Belfast!
Wild Atlantic Way Route Google Maps
Approx. 151 kms distance, 3 hrs 12 minutes driving time
Download the route map to your phone with ALL the points of interest included here: Lisfannon to Muff.
The starting point on this route, Lisfannon Beach on the Inishowen Peninsula is another popular swimming spot. Looking across to Rathmullan, with Inch Island to the South. Well protected, the beach does have lifeguards in the summer months. The North West Golf Club is nearby.
The information board tells of John Newton, a slave trader, whose ship Greyhound nearly sank in a storm in 1784. He prayed for mercy and when he limped into Lough Swilly he changed his life direction and became a Church of England priest. He wrote some now famous hymns such as : ‘Glorious things of thee are spoken’, ‘Amazing Grace’ and ‘How sweet the name of Jesus sounds’.
This Wild Atlantic Way Discovery Point is well worth a visit.
The Fort was important for providing protection for the British Naval Fleet that was anchored here before WWI.
There is a lot to see here. The site has a lighthouse that was established in 1876, with the old lighthouse keeper’s cottage.
There is also a Military Museum relating to Dunree Fort (1798), a coffee shop in the old Forge, a machine gun shed and fitter’s shop.
There is good parking available and a small pier. You can visit the Barracks and see the artillery that is dotted around the location. There are great views over the Lough from the Fort.
A good spot for a day visit.
Gap of Mamore
This gap is a wonderful drive over the mountains. There is a holy well with a grotto for St. Eigne on this road.
The well attracts a pilgrimage every year on the 15th August.
When I drove this road my modular helmet lost a hinge at the top which rather ruined my trip down as there was no place to stop that was level, and it was quite a challenge driving with one hand on the bike!
Watch my drive-through here:
But the views are spectacular as you descend and come out of the pass.
The information board describes how Poitín was distilled in the hills around this area in the days that it was illegal.
The Glenevin waterfall is located about 1km away from the large car park which is signposted.
There is a tea house and ice cream parlour near the car park. I did not walk to the waterfall as I was out of time (and a waterfall is a waterfall 😊). The walk to the waterfall is not too strenuous and is through woodland.
Pollan Strand is a beach approx 2 km long and is close to Ballyliffin Golf Club.
You can see Glashedy Island from the beach. The beach is partly stony and partly sandy. Surfers frequent this beach.
This rocky outcrop at the top of the Inishowen Peninsula, Malin head is Ireland’s most northerly point and is recognisable from the daily shipping weather forecasts.
Malin Head is a Signature point on the Wild Atlantic Way.
You may have to park lower down and walk up the hill to get to the viewpoints. You can see the EIRE 80 sign here which was used to guide aviators during WWII.
The watchtower was built in the early 1800s to watch for the French during the Napoleonic wars.
It was used again during the two world wars as a lookout station.
Ballyhillin beach can be seen from the viewpoint and is a good place to find semi-precious stones like jasper and serpentine.
There is some diverse marine life in the waters around Malin head, which attracts whales, dolphins and basking sharks. The area also attracts some rare birdlife.
There are tea/coffee vans parked at the top.
This sandy beach, Culdaff (or Cil Dabhcha) is a clean Blue Flag beach close to the village of Culdaff.
There is a parking area, a children’s play area and lifeguards are present during the summer months. Good for walking, surfing and fishing. Every New Year the locals brave the water for a New Year’s Day swim.
This beach is one of the most spectacular beaches I have seen along the WAW (and let’s face it there are quite a few).
When I visited there were some people wild camping at the back of the beach. There is a parking area at the bottom but with quite a steep and narrow road to get to the car park.
When I visited there was a sad reminder in the form of some beautiful blooming sunflowers that had been planted in memory of a family that had had a tragic car accident in Donegal.
But the beach was almost empty with some rocky outcrops near the car park and a few people were in the water.
In 1588 La Trinidad Valencera from the Spanish Armada sank off this beach. 350 survivors surrendered but many were finished off by the English. There are many stories like this along this coast where 24 of the 38 Spanish ships here were shipwrecked along this coast. Despite the tragedies, this beach is a lovely place to visit.
Magilligan Point View
The most Easterly part of The Republic of Ireland on the Atlantic, Inishowen Head is marked by a lighthouse and a charming small sandy beach. From the beach, there are views over to Portrush in Northern Ireland. On a clear day, you can see the hills of Scotland from this point.
There is a looped walk here and a car park.
St. Colmcille, the patron saint of emigrants, said his last farewell to Donegal from here when he set off to bring Christianity to the Scots in 562 AD. He then sailed to the island of Iona where he set up his monastery.
Muff is officially the start or end of the Wild Atlantic Way depending on which way you are travelling.
For me, it was a culmination of a fantastic few weeks of biking that had introduced me to new parts of the wonderful West Coast of Ireland.
There is not much to see in Muff except to get an iconic photograph next to the Town’s sign. Or join the Diving Club and get a free T-shirt! Welcome to Muff!
I hope you had a great time visiting the Wild Atlantic Way and Ireland looks forward to seeing you back!
This is the END of the Wild Atlantic Way. But you can always carry on East and head to the Causeway Coastal Route if you have time.
I have spent many (fun) hours creating this website to help people travelling the Wild Atlantic Way. If you found it useful and it helped you plan your trip, please consider donating towards my petrol/gas bill! Many thanks!
Last Updated on October 21, 2023 by Gav