Monaghan Travel Guide

Discover the beauty and culture of Monaghan with our extensive travel guide, including where to stay, what to do, and must-try dishes.

Introduction to Monaghan

Nestled in Northwest Ireland and Lakelands, Monaghan is a charming county with plenty to offer tourists eager to explore out-of-the-beaten-path destinations. Despite its relatively small size, Monaghan is teeming with natural and cultural attractions, making it an ideal travel spot for discerning travelers.

List of Places to Visit in Monaghan

No visit to Monaghan is complete without exploring its various attractions. Here are some of the must-visit places:

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

While Monaghan may not have the same historical significance as other Irish counties, it boasts numerous museums and historical sites. These include:

  • Castle Leslie Estate
  • Monaghan County Museum
  • St. Patrick’s Church
  • Inniskeen Round Tower

Natural Attractions of Monaghan: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

Monaghan’s natural beauty is unparalleled and provides ample opportunities for outdoor activities. Some of the must-see natural attractions are:

  • Lough Muckno
  • Carrickmacross Lace Gallery
  • Rossmore Forest Park
  • Sliabh Beagh Way

Hiking/Biking Routes of Monaghan

Monaghan offers plenty of hiking and biking routes, suitable for both beginners and seasoned hikers alike. Hikers can explore the rugged landscapes of the Sliabh Beagh Mountains and Concra Wood, while mountain bikers can try out the trails at Rossmore Forest Park.

Best Things to Do in Monaghan: Activities and Tours

Aside from hiking and biking, Monaghan has several must-try activities and tours for visitors:

  • Go-karting at Monaghan Karting
  • Visiting the Carrickmacross Workhouse
  • Horse riding at Castle Leslie Estate
  • Exploring Monaghan’s food and drink scene with a food tour

Week-Long Itinerary for Monaghan

For visitors planning a week-long trip, here’s a suggested itinerary to make the most out of your stay in Monaghan:

Day 1: Arrival and exploring Monaghan Town

Day 2: Visiting Castle Leslie Estate and going on a horse ride

Day 3: Hiking at Sliabh Beagh Way and picnic at Lough Muckno

Day 4: Exploring the historical sites of Monaghan, such as St. Patrick’s Church and Inniskeen Round Tower

Day 5: Food tour of Monaghan and exploring the local food scene

Day 6: Biking in Rossmore Forest Park and going to Monaghan Karting

Day 7: Departure

Food and Drink Scene of Monaghan

Monaghan has a burgeoning food and drink scene, with several must-try local dishes and beverages. Here are some of the best:

Must-Try Dishes

  • Monaghan potato pancake
  • Boxty
  • Black pudding
  • Clones lace pancakes

Local Beverages

  • Guinness
  • Smithwick’s
  • Monaghan Brewery craft beer
  • Irish coffee

Where to Stay in Monaghan: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

Monaghan offers a range of accommodations for visitors, such as:

  • Castle Leslie Estate
  • Hillgrove Hotel
  • Four Seasons Hotel and Leisure Club
  • The Glencarn Hotel and Leisure Centre

What to Buy in Monaghan: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

Visitors can bring home some of Monaghan’s distinct local products, such as:

  • Carrickmacross Lace
  • Monaghan Crystal
  • Traditional Irish knitwear

Local Culture and Customs of Monaghan

Monaghan has a rich local culture, with various traditions and customs celebrated throughout the year. Visitors can participate in events like:

  • Clones Film Festival
  • Carrickmacross Arts Fest
  • The Ballybay Pearse Brotherhood Parade
  • Laragan and Kilmainhamwood drama festivals

Best Time to Visit Monaghan

The best time to visit Monaghan is during the spring and summer months, from April to August, when the weather is mild and ideal for exploring the outdoors.

Do’s and Don’ts of Monaghan

As with any destination, visitors should keep in mind some cultural norms and practices. Here are some do’s and don’ts for Monaghan:


  • Take part in local traditions and customs
  • Respect the environment and natural attractions
  • Try the local food and drink


  • Litter or damage natural attractions
  • Disrespect local customs and traditions
  • Overdrink or cause disorderly conduct

Safety and Health

Monaghan is a safe destination for tourists, with relatively low crime rates. Visitors should still exercise caution and take necessary precautions. It is also advisable to keep travel insurance that covers health.

Safety in Monaghan

  • Keep valuables secure and avoid flashing wealth
  • Take caution when traveling at night
  • Follow traffic laws when using public transport

Health in Monaghan

  • Monitor weather forecasts and prepare accordingly
  • Stay hydrated and avoid alcohol

Getting to Monaghan: Transportation Options and Logistics

Visitors can get to Monaghan through various means of transportation. Here are some options:

Airports Near Monaghan

  • Dublin Airport (130 km)
  • Belfast International Airport (110 km)

Bus Stations Near Monaghan

  • Bus Éireann Monaghan station

Other Options

  • Car rental
  • Private taxi

How to Get Around in Monaghan

Visitors can get around Monaghan through public transportation, car rentals, or cycling. Taxis and private cars are also available at their convenience.

Where to Go Next from Monaghan: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

For visitors keen to discover more of Ireland, there are several nearby destinations worth exploring. These include:

  • County Cavan
  • County Armagh
  • Belfast, Northern Ireland


Monaghan is a hidden gem, offering visitors the chance to discover Ireland’s natural beauty and rich culture. With several attractions, outdoor activities, and must-try food and drink, Monaghan should be on every traveler’s list. Plan your trip well, and you’ll surely fall in love with this hidden Irish county.