Cruise at the Shannon River – Eire’s Historic Freeway


A cruise at the Shannon River with Le Boat is likely one of the most original tactics to discover Eire taking you in the course of the center of the rustic and its lengthy historical past. When you select an Irish River cruise, you’ve gotten the danger to self-drive alongside Eire’s historical freeway to ancient ruins and well-known castles. Every the town alongside the River Shannon welcomes bargers with open fingers and ice-cold pints of Guinness as gifted musicians entertain the gang with vigorous conventional tune.

Cruising the Shannon is also the function, however getting off the boat to enjoy Irish hospitality is what creates recollections to closing a life-time. In case you are making plans a cruise at the Shannon, we’re going to come up with the entire data you want to profit from your commute. At this time, Le Boat is providing early reserving financial savings of 10% till November 30 for the 2023 season. Take a look at all their locations in Europe and Canada. See main points right here.

Cruising at the Shannon

Cruising on the Shannon River with Le Boat

This was once our fourth Le Boat River Cruise. We had simply completed cruising the Canal du Midi in France and made two different journeys at the Rideau Canal in Ottawa, Canada the summer time prior to. We had been taking a look ahead to cruising the River Shannon because it regarded very similar to a Rideau Canal cruise with extra open water and lakes than the lengthy and slim Canal du Midi. Eire has a different position in our commute hearts and we had been going to consult with puts in Eire that we hadn’t observed prior to.

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In regards to the Shannon River

About Cruising on the Shannon River

The Shannon River is the longest river in Eire spanning 360 km in the course of the center of the rustic. It begins in Shannon Pot in County Cavan within the north of Eire and leads to County Limerick on the Shannon Estuary.

Our Shannon River Cruise Direction

shannon river cruise map

All the way through our 8-day Shannon River Cruise, we traveled from Carrick on Shannon from the Le Boat place of work. (Emerald Megastar in Eire) to Portumna the place Le Boat has every other place of work. Boats are all parked of their marina with complete energy and amenities.

In Eire, Le Boat is referred to as Emerald Megastar. Emerald Megastar has been Eire’s Quantity One boating vacation supplier and has been working at the Rivers Shannon for almost 50 years so I will perceive why they didn’t need to lose their title!

What to Be expecting on a Cruise at the River Shannon

What to expect cruising on the Shannon river

Carrick on Shannon to Portumna (or visa versa) is likely one of the hottest routes for Shannon River Barge Cruisers. This is a 160 km adventure that takes you via 5 locks and underneath 2 bridges. To commute 160 km on a Le Boat houseboat, the adventure takes roughly 20 hours of sailing time. Boats are restricted to 10km in keeping with hour, so when you find yourself Shannon Cruising, you might be sitting again to chill out. As you’ll see from the map, we lined a large number of Eire.

We had been stunned with simply what number of Irish had been cruising the Shannon River on both their very own boats or with boat leases. It surely reminded us a large number of the Rideau Canal in Canada in that sense. When cruising that canal, we noticed many unbiased boaters benefit from the UNESCO Global Heritage Website online.

River Shannon Cruise Shuttle

We flew into Dublin the place our trip from Kearns Coaches picked us as much as take us to the Le Boat Headquarters at Carrick on Shannon. We requested our motive force if lets forestall at a grocery retailer to select up provides and he was once glad to have a brief wreck whilst we purchased foods and drinks for our week at the River Shannon.

Carrick on Shannon is a town the place we may have purchased all our provides, so the forestall wasn’t wanted, however it was once great so that you could load meals into the van and offload it at once on the dock.

Do you Want Boating Enjoy to Cruise the Shannon River?

Cruising on the Shannon River do you need experience

You don’t want boating enjoy to cruise the Shannon with Le Boat. A Le Boat consultant will stroll you via the whole lot you want at the boat after which take you out for a brief lesson. All boats have a most pace prohibit of 10 km in keeping with hour and there are many bumpers at the boat. Plus, boats have thrusters that you are going to learn to use to your orientation they usually make using simple.

Our information walked us in the course of the heating and air-con and all the controls that we’d be the use of throughout the following seven days. And he’ll take you out on a check pressure to turn you learn how to use the thrusters and controls. By the point he left the boat, we felt assured to start out navigating our manner alongside the Shannon River.

Day 1 – Carrick on Shannon

Cruise on the Shannon River Carrick on Shannon

We spent the evening at Carrick on Shannon and in an instant fell in love with this the town. There are many issues to do in Carrick on Shannon that you’ll want to spend 2 nights within the the town.

Carrick on Shannon is a full of life town stuffed with pubs which might be packed to the hilt. We discovered that this is a fashionable Stag and Chicken birthday celebration vacation spot in the United Kingdom and wedding ceremony events had flown in from in all places Britain to rejoice.

Cruise on the Shannon River Carrick on Shannon Pub

It was once simple to discover a pub the place we presented my brother Jim to a right kind pint of Guinness. Ahead of Eire, he vowed that he would now not turn into keen on Guinness as a result of he doesn’t like darkish beer, however we quickly made a “Guinness Lover” out of him. We spent the evening bar hopping and being attentive to gifted Irish bands prior to strolling again to our boat that was once positioned proper downtown within the Le Boat Marina.

Cruise on the Shannon River Costello Memorial Chapel
Costello Memorial Chapel

One to not pass over vacation spot within the center of downtown Carrick on Shannon is Costello Memorial Chapel. It’s stated to be the second one smallest chapel on this planet and was once made via Edward Costello who trustworthy it to his spouse who died in 1877. Each their tombs are on show underneath glass within.

Day 2 – Carrick on Shannon to Tarmonbarry

Cruise on the Shannon River en route to Tarmonbarry

We had various time every day to get to our subsequent vacation spot at the Shanon River, so every morning we made breakfast at the boat and loved a leisurely tempo prior to surroundings off for Tarmonbarry.

Le Boats have complete kitchens they usually provide you with pots and pans, dishes, and cutlery. Via ordering the picnic starter package, we additionally had salt and pepper, olive oil and tin foil. All we would have liked to buy on the grocery retailer was once the foods and snacks we would have liked for the week forward.

Lunch at Dromod

En course, we stopped on the pretty riverside village of Dromod. Dromod is a picturesque the town that could be a very best forestall for lunch. We docked on the harbor that has been used for greater than 150 years for barges sporting Guinness and the use of it as a stopover. There are a few eating places and pubs with a notable steakhouse.

Cruise on the Shannon River Dromond Harbor

You’ll stroll out to the railway museum and will take a brief experience at the still-operating steam educate. Out of doors you’ll see vintage cars, an outdated bus, an aircraft, and a submarine. Within the museum, there are guns on show from WWII.

Cruise on the Shannon River Dromond Cox Steakhouse

In case you aren’t going to cook dinner lunch at the boat, we recommend preventing for lunch on the Brandywell Bar Eating place and Hotel to check out some Guinness Pie or you’ll top off on some groceries at Kinneden Organics to buy some natural fruit and greens. Cox’s Steakhouse is every other fashionable eating place and if you’re staying the evening, be sure to ebook a desk prematurely for dinner.

In a single day in Tarmonbarry

Cruise on the Shannon River Tarmonbarry

After a few hours at Dromod, we made our strategy to Tarmonbarry the place we spent the evening on this vigorous the town. We had been informed that we’d want to name the bridge keeper to get underneath the bridge, however as he was once using via, he yelled over to us, pronouncing we’d make it. Simply cross sluggish! Handiest in Eire eh?

We adopted his recommendation and slowly crossed underneath the bridge ducking our heads as we handed. We had been in Tarmonbarry with various hours to spare prior to sundown.

Cruise on the Shannon River Whitehall Church Tarmonbarry
Precise stone boat from the miracle of Saint Barry

It was once then at the motorcycles that we rented from Le Boat searching for the Abbey that was once constructed via Saint Barrech, (Barry) within the Sixth Century. It was once an extended motorcycle experience than anticipated, however after biking via farmland, hills, and the Irish Geographical region, we in any case discovered the Abbey that properties his stone boat.

Legend has it that Saint Barry carried out a miracle when he had to go the River Shannon to have a tendency to a ill comrade. With out a boat in sight, we grew to become an enormous boulder right into a watercraft to go the river. We noticed stated boulder in all its glory at Whitehall Church simply north of The town.

This can be a nice the town to hang around in for the night time with various pubs and eating places. We listened to reside tune at Keenans and loved a pint open air at The Shannon Bar and Lawn.

Day 3 – Tarmonbarry to Lanesborough

Cruise on the Shannon River Lanesborough

After an evening of a number of pints of Guinness, we slept like young children within the quiet marina. This marina is positioned on a biking and strolling path and makes for a just right position to stretch your legs within the morning.

It was once then off to Lanesborough simply in time for lunch.

Be sure you forestall on this the town as there are a few very good ancient church buildings to discover. There’s a distillery on the town and nice puts for espresso. It was once throughout this commute that Jim and Janice discovered that Dave and I really like a just right cup of espresso as we set out every day to discover a scrumptious espresso store. We at all times discovered what we would have liked!

Lanesborough to Athlone

Cruise on the Shannon River Lanesborough Church

We parked our boat via the bridge around the Shannon River from Lanesborough. It’s right here that you’ll discover the dual towns of Lanesborough and Ballyleague. Sling Shot Gin is distilled proper on this the town and you’ll forestall in for a style and to buy an Irish memento.

Don’t pass over visiting St. John’s church which dates the entire as far back as the start of the Christian custom in Eire throughout the fifth Century. Lanesborough is a brilliant position to experience lunch and to stretch your legs prior to shifting on in your forestall for the evening, Athlone.

In a single day in Athlone

Cruise on the Shannon River Athlone Castle

Athlone is the biggest town for your Shannon River Cruise and we recommend spending two nights right here if you’ll. I’d moderately do day journeys out to Lanesborough and Loch Ree throughout the day and use Athlone as a base for 2 nights. Loch Ree is so fashionable to discover that there are Viking ships that take vacationers out to discover its Viking historical past and all of its monasteries dotting the shore.

Day 4 – Athlone

shannon river cruise parking downton athlone

Athlone is house to the arena’s oldest pub and we parked our boat at once in entrance of this ancient landmark. The pub is positioned at once at the Shannon River and Le Boat has high docking areas proper within the middle of the town. Whether it is complete, you’ll additionally park on the marina just a little bit prior to the town, however we suggest attending to Athlone early to get a place at this high location. We had been inside strolling distance from all over the place. And had a thousand-dollar-a-night view from our high location.

Cruise on the Shannon River Seans Bar

There are such a lot of issues to do in Athlone, that it is likely one of the best vacationer locations in Eire. It’s a well-liked forestall for excursion buses touring between Dublin and Galway and for just right reason why.

Wander via its Medieval Streets to peruse its stores, eating places, and cafes. And be sure to consult with Athlone Fortress which dominates the waterfront. Our boat was once only a few quick steps clear of this ancient landmark relationship again to 1210. You’ll take guided excursions in the course of the fort grounds.

Sean’s Bar – Global’s Oldest Pub

Cruise on the Shannon River Worlds oldest pub

The Global’s Oldest Pub was once surely a spotlight. The Guinness E book of Global Data says that it’s Europe’s oldest pub, however the proof displays that it’s in reality The Global’s Oldest often working pub. They have got the bureaucracy to end up it. Sean’s Bar dates again to 500 AD and it was once throughout renovations within the Seventies that they discovered thousand-year-old cash and the unique construction made from Wattle and Wicker.

Cruise on the Shannon River Athlone Bastion Gallery

This the town was once made much more well-known when Michael Jackson stopped in to drop some huge cash within the Bastion Gallery. Athlone in point of fact is a gem of a Shannon River Cruise and lots of Shannoriver cruisers use this as a base and easily do day excursions from right here.

Day 5 – Athlone to Shannonbridge

Cruise on the Shannon River Views

Nowadays is a gorgeous day so be sure to go away shiny and early to take your time at probably the most abnormal stops at the Shannon River. Nowadays you consult with the impressive Clonmacnoise. This forestall is an historical town that showcases a Sixth-century monastic agreement.

We left Athlone as quickly because the locks opened to make it to Clonmacnoise prior to the crowds. Even if you’ll dock your boat right here at the Shannon River, bus excursions common this surprise of Eire. So you’re going to be sharing it with overland vacationers.


Cruise on the Shannon River Clonmacnoise

Clonmacnoise is a monastic agreement from the Sixth century. Pulling as much as the dock is improbable unto itself. The very first thing that comes into view is the top citadel overlooking the Shannon River. As you stroll up the trail in opposition to the doorway, the crosses and church buildings become visible and you might be in for one thing particular.

Cruise on the Shannon River Clonmacnoise Abbey

Plan to spend two hours taking part in Clonmacnoise. Your consult with starts with a 15-minute movie explaining the historical past of the monastery adopted via a guided excursion. The guided excursion gives perception into the crosses and grounds, and is just right to participate in however it’s also great to stay round after the gang leaves (And prior to the following one arrives).

All the way through that point, you’ve gotten time to benefit from the grounds by yourself. There are greater than 700 early Christian gravestones, top towers, and improbable stone crosses.

Cruise on the Shannon River Clonmacnoise North Cross

Within the museum is implausible as neatly. Be sure you stay a watch out for The North Move, which seems to be very similar to the go at the E book of Kells. Learn extra: 34 of the Perfect Issues to do in Dublin, Eire

Since this website online is likely one of the early Christian settlements, Clonmacnoise is a well-liked non secular pilgrimage, and Pope John Paul II gave mass right here in 1979.

In a single day at Shannonbridge

Cruise on the Shannon River Shannonbridge

This night is the evening we docked at Shannonbridge which is every other spotlight of a Shannon River Cruise. Like such a lot of puts that we docked throughout our Le Boat commute at the Shannon, we parked proper downtown and may stroll all over the place. In reality, we had been as soon as once more in entrance of a well-known Eire pub! Luker’s Bar Shannonbridge is house to one of the crucial best-preserved pubs in all of Eire. Luker’s Bar is so well-known that it’s at the Irish Bar Calendar that includes well-known bars within the nation.

Cruise on the Shannon River Lukers Bar Shannonbridge

We had been fortunate as a result of John, the landlord was once serving that evening and he took us on a excursion into his original pub that has slightly modified because the 1750s. There may be the closing last Victoria Regina Hearth in all the British Isles, outdated wood tables the place you’ll nearly odor the odor of an 18th-century birthday celebration and memorabilia from a bygone technology.

Cruise on the Shannon River Old Lukers Bar Shannonbridge
Proprietor Jon with Dave in Eire’s maximum original ancient pub

You could need to spend all of your time within the pub when docking your boats at the River Shannon, however be sure to challenge out to discover extra of Shannonbridge. The bridge itself is a gorgeous arched construction that was once finished within the 1700s. There’s a impressive outdated citadel positioned proper at the River Shannon the place you’ll clutch a espresso and discover the martello towers.

Cruise on the Shannon River Shannonbridge Fort

The citadel was once constructed to protected the Shannon River from an invasion via Napoleon and there are lots issues to look. In case you are on the lookout for reside tune, Killeen’s Bar has tune on Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday nights from Might to October.

It can be a small the town, however you’ll organize to head pub hopping in Shannonbridge. That’s simply the way in which issues are in Eire.

Day 6 – Banagher

Cruise on the Shannon River Banagher

Banagher is a good looking subsequent forestall at the River Shannon cruise the place you’ll be staying in a big marina. This marina has showers, laundry, and within sight meals vehicles within the top season. It’s an overly quick stroll to the town to experience various pubs and eating places. Be sure you consult with the River Shannon Brewery to take a wreck from Guinness and check out out their artisan craft beers the Martello Tower and Crank Pink Ale.

Cruise on the Shannon River Banagher Restaurants

It was once on this the town that we loved one among our favourite dinners at the River Shannon. Unfortunately, I utterly forgot its title, however should you stroll right into a again alleyway now not a long way into the town, you’ll pop out to a picturesque courtyard. Dave and I discovered it whilst on the lookout for a espresso store they usually had scrumptious cappuccinos. Whilst sipping our espresso, we made a reservation for that evening.

This pretty eating place is a brand new addition to the city with implausible meals and a lovely setting. On the time of writing they didn’t have their liquor license but, however they allowed us to deliver our personal wine.

Cruise on the Shannon River Banagher River Pool

One of the most extra distinctive issues to do in Banagher is to hop in for a swim within the River Shannon on the Banagher Swimming pool which is positioned proper within the waters of the river.

Day 7 – Portumna Fortress

Cruise on the Shannon River Portmuna Castle

Our ultimate pressure alongside the Shannon River prior to our closing night time was once a fantastic commute via Lough Derg to Portumna. We advise passing Portumna and making your strategy to the jetty in entrance of Portumna Fortress. It’s in the course of the bridge and you’ll have to time it in step with your timetable that you simply’ll obtain from Le Boat, however believe me, it would be best to keep in entrance of the fort.

Cruise on the Shannon River Portmuna Abbey

Portumna Fortress is a gem of Eire and each King James I and Queen Elizabeth I visited this shocking fort. You’ll take a excursion of the fort grounds and within there’s a cafe providing recent espresso and meals that may be visited without spending a dime. Fortunately we had our motorcycle leases and loved a pleasant experience in the course of the picturesque Portumna Wooded area Park.

Cruise on the Shannon River Portmuna Town

There are many pubs, eating places and buying groceries on the town and as is the case with all the cities and villages at the Shannon River, a fascinating church and a few outdated ruins.

The Abbey Ruins positioned between the fort and the town may also be simply explored throughout your stroll and are utterly unfastened to go into. They had been a spotlight of the numerous issues to look at the River Shannon.

Day 8 – Ultimate Evening Portumna Dock

Cruise on the Shannon River Portmuna Dock

It was once a 9 am take a look at tomorrow, so we left Portumna Fortress within the afternoon to make the overall bridge crossing again to the Le Boat dock in Portumna. This dock is an remoted position to be sure to have what you want for the evening. You’ll order meals and feature it delivered for a flat charge from the town. The Le Boat body of workers had been great sufficient to make a choice for us and we ordered Italian meals for our ultimate evening at the River Shannon.

We spent the evening stress-free and packing as much as be off the boat and able for our trip again to Dublin shiny and early.

Our Le Boat commute had come to an finish, however the recollections created will closing a life-time.

A couple of Shannon River Cruise

Cruise on the Shannon River FAQ Cruising

Our course took us from Carrick on Shannon to Portumna. It was once an 8-day cruise and we spent about 3 hours every day at the Water.

  • Our commute spanned 160 km / 5 locks / 2 Bridges / 20 hours of sailing
  • Locks are open Monday – Saturday 09:00am -8 pm and Sundays 10:00am-6:00pm
  • When renting a Le Boat, the whole lot is integrated. They come up with good playing cards if want to perform the locks. As a rule they aren’t wanted, however I’ve learn that they’re required at the Shannon Erne.
  • Lifestyles Jackets should be worn on the locks.
  • That is the very best commute for inexperienced persons as no enjoy is wanted. The times are stress-free and also you’ll flow into every the town early sufficient to discover and experience.
Cruise on the Shannon River Le Boat

Be ready for Irish climate, it could actually flip instantly and we skilled a large number of rain. We needed to pressure from under maximum days, however we had the warmth on and the snacks flowing as we took within the leisurely tempo of exploring the Shannon.

The wonderful thing about visiting Eire is that if the elements is unhealthy, the pubs are open with pleasant and alluring other people ready to heat you up with a pleasant pint of Guinness via the hearth.

Plan Your Subsequent Travel to Eire With Those Sources



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