Lighthouse Cottages

Clonakilty West Cork, Ireland
From: €2,500 weeklySleeps: 8Bedrooms: 4
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Lighthouse Cottages: Cork

The Lighthouse Cottages are two side by side houses situates on The Galley Head.
Each cottage sleeps 4 guests, and they can be rented either separately or together for groups of between 5 - 8.

Extraordinary holiday rental which commands panoramic views over the Bay on the Wild Atlantic. The Galley Head Lightkeepers' cottages are perched dramatically on cliffs at about 130 feet above sea level overlooking St George's Channel. This landmark lighthouse property benefits from a spectacularly unique setting, conveniently close to Clonakilty town centre and local beaches.

The views from every angle are genuinely awe-inspiring and breathtaking. The lighthouse which dates back to 1875 displays an unusual landward arc of light because it is said, the Sultan of Turkey wanted to see it from nearby Castle Freke at Rosscarbery while on a visit there. The house at Castle Freke, abandoned in 1952, can now be seen from Galley as a gothic ruin.

The two keepers' houses at Galley Head, were taken on by Irish Landmark in the final years of the 20th century. Lightkeepers who lived here would have witnessed the tragic loss of the Lusitania in 1915, and sighted a German ship carrying arms, in disguise as a Norwegian steam, pursued up the St. George's Channel by British destroyers a year later. It is also said that Ray Bradbury based his melancholy story "The Fog Horn" on a reported sighting of a sea serpent at Galley in 1860.

The station consists of a tower connected by a 38-metre corridor to the semi-detached, two-storey, dwelling, initially built for the principal and assistant keeper, a single-storey home for the gas maker. The two houses have been restored to their original symmetrical layout and make an ideal retreat for a family break.

The lighthouse cottages are in an 'Area of Special Interest', with Clonakilty Bay being home to a variety of rare and unusual birds. This is a superior vacation home by the sea, from where you can explore the outstanding beauty of West Cork, from the stunning Old Head peninsula to the gastronomic delights of Clonakilty.

Lighthouse Cottages: Please share your stay experience
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RitaBrandley - USA
May - 2018
"Had the most amazing time!" Lovely spacious house with huge kitchen....area is stunning and the sounds of the waves crashing off the cliffs brought us real joy! no wifi or tv which we really liked....its isolated yet still close enough to Clonakilty and Cork City.
Giles H - USA
April - 2018
"A real experience" A colleague said “go stay in a lighthouse”. So we did, we spent a couple of days in late March (we had all 4 seasons in every day, it is seriously exposed), and we loved it. It is a 100+ year old building, it has no wi-fi (indeed, very weak cell signal), it is creaky, it is blustery and it is beautiful. The man who welcomed us and gave us the keys (through two locked gates, this is seriously off the beaten path) had grown up in the lighthouse as his Dad had been the keeper and he went on to do this himself. Lots of stories, amazing hospitality, stunning views and on the last day he took us up the lighthouse and gave us the history etc. Amazing! It had a functional kitchen, comfortable living room and the bedrooms were just fine. (This is not the Ritz, but then, that’s not why you would go there: its also half an hour from the nearest grocery store, which was excellent BTW). If you are looking for a different kind of experience, go for it. Seriously beautiful location.
Noni314 - USA
September - 2017
"Like stepping back in time" Nothing but sky, sea, wind and stars. Here is a chance to immerse yourself in another time and place. The Galley Head Lightkeeper's House is spare, but comfortable and the views from every window are like nothing else. The road to the light is narrow and twisty, setting the tone for a truly unique experience. Isolated from the usual tourist destinations, you are alone with the light and the elements. Hiking along the cliffs is magical and watching the light streak across the bedroom wall as you drift off to sleep is something other-worldly. The house is well-equipped with linens, dishes, kitchen necessities, but if you want food, you MUST plan ahead and bring everything with you. It's not a place that invites you to 'run out' for milk. We loved building a fire in the parlor with peat bricks each evening and laying in the grass under the light in the full dark, looking at the sky, the stars and the light streaking across the night. You can almost imagine what it was like for the family that kept the light and lived in this beautiful and remote place. A unique travel experience.
Dix60 - UK
August - 2017
"Looking to relax and get away from the stresses of life..." This is the place - the views are breath taking - watching dolphins swim along the coast and the whales feeding. You will experience every weather in a day! The houses are just lovely and extremely well equipped. The people who look after the houses are from the lighthouse keepers family and share the amazing history. Also recommend that you purchase a copy of 'The Lightkeeper' by Gerald Butler - we were lucky enough to meet Gerald who gave us a tour of the lighthouse and shared the history and workings if it. At night we cooked at home in the lovely kitchen and sat by the fire. We were quite sad to leave but will definitely revisit.
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  • Property Features
  • From: €2,500 weekly
  • Stylish & spacious self catering
  • All rooms with beautiful bay view
  • Gallery-style double height dining room
  • Expansive lawned private garden
  • Complimentary weekly clean
  • Private off-road parking


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