Malin Head is situated on the Inishowen Peninsular, the most northern point on mainland Ireland. It is a beautifully wild and rugged area and is also the start of the Wild Atlantic Way.
Sitting at the table beside us in The Seaview Tavern Bar at Ballygorman, Malin Head, the most northerly restaurant in Ireland, was a group of tourists from New York. Like us, they had come for warm and delicious food after exploring the breathtaking scenery on a blustery and wet day in Malin Head.
One American tells the server: “We love you Irish… Oh you are all so absolutely adorable”
The server replies….. “Aww stap it yous are making me blush. A grown man with pink cheeks. Sure why don’t yous stay a while and charm me till the cows come home”
It’s this inimitable Irish charm that makes our brilliant little island one of a kind…and one which is loved from near and far.
After joining in with the banter and the craic. Cos that’s we do. We love to laugh ( mainly at ourselves) myself and my son turn our attention back to our own meal:
Freshly caught fish, homemade chips, mushy peas and beautiful white sauce.. William had peppered chicken, chips, a vegetable melody. Finished off with ice cream and chocolate cake! And there might even have been an Irish coffee…
A sheer plethora of delicious and fresh food served up with a smile and excellent customer service.
A few metres away we come to Farran’s bar.. Where Star Wars cast and crew came to partake of a few bevvies. Mark Hammill and co became regulars whilst filming scenes for The Last Jedi on this epic looking coastline.
Recommended by Peter : the proprietor of the cute little Curiosity Shop up the road from Farrens.. (Ardmalin Malin head).
Drop in to browse his collection of vintage knick knacks and trinkets (think your Granny’s mantelpiece, in the 1970s only with more knick knacks!!!) and he’ll tell you all about when Star Wars came to town….
And an hour later Peter will STILL be telling you about the day Star Wars came to town (we love Peter!)
“They plugged the camera right in there,” he says, pointing to a socket on the table in front of him before showing us some laminated photographs of the film crew on site and telling us how he didn’t even realise who these people were…!
I ‘m not a fan of Star Wars myself but it’s easy to see why Malin Head was chosen as the backdrop for scenes from ‘The Last Jedi’.
The view from the Banba’s Crown (Ballyhillion Ardmalin. No exact address, Hey it’s Donegal!) lookout point is amazing. And the exhilarating walk from there along the dramatic cliff-edge to ‘Hell’s Hole’, a subterranean cavern at the end of the trail, is something everyone should experience.
Banba’s Crown tower still stands proud overlooking the ocean and has stood there since it was built in 1805. It was originally built during the Napoleonic Wars to help keep a lookout for the French.
Since its original use it has played other parts in history. In 1870 it started to be used by Lloyds Of London to send semaphore messages across to the lighthouse on the island of Inishtrahull.
And it was from Malin Head that the first commercial wire message was sent by the Marconi company, sent to the S.S. Lake Ontario.
It was named after Banba, the mythological goddess of Ireland.
Though bring good walking shoes and be prepared for a bit of a hike. But a worthwhile one The scenery is truly breathtaking. Just be careful no one pushes you over the edge. You will disappear for good (not recommended)
The ocean which is viewed the entire walk is amazing, it transports the traveller to a world of absolute wonder and amazement. No other place stirs the soul quite like Banbas Crown.
Back at the car park, vendors sell bits and bobs of touristy stuff , as well as snacks and drinks if you’ve worked up a thirst. And absolutely delicious coffee and brownies ( not to be missed).
An Immersive Visit
Malin Head is, of course, at the tip of the Inishowen Peninsula – Ireland’s largest peninsula, situated in the north west of the country.
To visit Malin Head is to come alive, to immerse yourself in the energy of the ocean, to savour Irish hospitality at its best and to simply stop the car in front of the ocean and get lost temporarily in the ruggedness and sheer unspoilt beauty of one of the most beautiful places in the world.
This is somewhere we visit regularly. Man and Nature become one here. The pace is slower.. Hurry and speed are not words in the Malin Head dictionary.
I love this place with every piece of my heart and soul. You have not truly lived without a visit to this fabulous place and the truly fabulous people. My soul belongs to this jewel.