48 HOURS IN ATHLONE
Explore the stunning scenery and rich history of Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands. Here on the banks of the River Shannon, we are blessed with our choice of outdoor adventures, river cruises and hotspots to uncover. Make the most of your trip with our 48 Hour Itinerary of hidden gems and local tips, compiled especially for you by our team.
Begin your 48-hour adventure with a visit to the 13th century Athlone Castle. Situated along the banks of the River Shannon, and only a 5-minutes stroll from the hotel, this must see visitor attraction brings history to life through modern exhibitions, museum artefacts and multimedia presentations.
Situated across the road from Athlone Castle is the stunning Luan Gallery which contains contemporary and traditional artistic pieces through a variety of media from painting to sculptures to textiles. Admission is free.
By now you should have worked up quite an appetite! Why not pay a visit to the Michelin listed restaurant The Fatted Calf. Located in Church Street, Athlone this bespoke restaurant is owned by husband and wife team, Feargal and Fiona O’Donnell and is a great spot for lunch serving locally sourced ingredients cooked to order.
After a relaxing lunch expand your horizons and explore Ireland Hidden Heartlands. The Old Rail Trail is a designated cycle path that starts at Garrycastle and continues for 40km to the town of Mullingar.
Alternatively, you can take a shorter route to Moate, approximately a journey of 12.3km. This route also provides you with an option to stop off and visit Dún na Sí Amenity & Heritage Park. This park comprises of the Scéal Exhibition in the Comhaltas Teach Cheoil, a Heritage Trail, Vintage Museum, Pet Farm, Walking Trails, Native Irish Woodland, Turlough, Playground and The Pantry Café.
After a day of exploring, return to the hotel for a bite to eat in Elements Bistro or Quayside Bar & Lounge or relax in your spacious room with our In-room dining option. If you fancy a night cap to round off the first day of your Athlone experience why not pay a visit to Ireland’s oldest pub, Sean’s Bar.
After a leisurely breakfast in Elements Bistro, what better way to start day two of your adventure than with a relaxing nature trail walk along the banks of the River Shannon and the old Athlone Canal. Not only will you experience Athlone from a different viewpoint but you will also learn about the diverse species of wildlife, fish, flora, fauna found along the trail through a series of well-positioned information boards.
Catch an early lunch at the award winning Savoury Fare Restaurant at Fernhill Garden Centre. has been serving up tasty treats, delicious dishes and cakes and coffees and a firm favourite for breakfast, brunch and lunch. Expect a warm welcome, high quality wholesome food and excellent customer service.
Now you are ready to discover the waters of Irelands Hidden Heartland by taking a Viking Tour cruise on the River Shannon on a replica Viking boat. Travel upriver into majestic Lough Ree (75 minutes) or downstream to the famous monastic settlement at Clonmacnoise (90 mins one way).
If Vikings aren’t quite your thing, the Romaris Boat Trip offers a contemporary alternative. From sightseeing tours, picnics and dining river trips to private boat hire from Athlone to Clonmacnoise and Lough Ree, you will not find a more elegant or tranquil way to enjoy the River Shannon.
Let the final chapter of your Athlone adventure be set at Thyme Restaurant which is centrally located along the banks of the River Shannon. Lovingly managed by John and Tara Coffey, their food is best described as modern Irish offering super-fresh produce with a homely approach.