We recently traveled to Ireland to explore the pubs of the coastal towns of Burtonport and Dungloe  in County Donegal. Here are 4 pubs that stood out during our time there.

Patrick Johnny Sally

Established in 1778, Patrick Johnnie Sally has plenty of old world charm. From its stone facade and interior stone archway to its brick fireplace, this bar will make you feel like you’re stepping back in time. When we entered we found several locals enjoying their pints, some reading the paper and discussing current headlines, and others too transfixed by the game on the television to bother raising their heads. We were greeted warmly by the barman, Noel, who we happened to meet the night before at O’Donnell’s Bar in Burtonport. After retrieving our pints, we headed out back to the spacious deck to take in the beautiful view of Dungloe Bay and a sunset over Arranmore Island.

The Lobster Pot

Whether you’re taking a day trip to the Arranmore Islands or are on a road trip to Galway or The Giant’s Causeway, if you’re looking for great seafood, you don’t want to miss out on The Lobster Pot. Located in the small fishing village of Burtonport, it is a muti-award winning, family owned restaurant you’d be hard pressed not to notice with a huge red lobster climbing the exterior front wall. Just a short walk from the Arranmore Island Ferry, its warm wooden interior and wood burning stove make it the perfect place to stop for a bite before embarking on the ferry ride. The seafood couldn’t be fresher and is often served the same day it is caught. We recommend the seafood platter: it is large enough to share and goes great paired with a locally brewed Kinnegar beer, particularly the Rustbucket Rye Ale. With two unique seating sections, you can chose to sit in the main dining area or, if you prefer, the bar area with its expansive collection of sports jerseys and memorabilia adorning the walls. Either area is very welcoming and family friendly.

Burtonport, Co. Donegal, Ireland

+353 74 954 2012


After a great dinner at The Lobster Pot, we recommend making your way down the street to O’Donnell’s Bar, also known locally as Jimmy Johnnie’s. As soon as you enter the bar, expect to be welcomed with a genuinely friendly vibe, as though this is your local bar too. The front bar is well-lit and boasts a couple TVs — a great place to sit and talk with friends old and new. The back bar consists of a large dance floor with several booths for when patrons’ feet get tired or they need to rehydrate. During our trip, the staff couldn’t have been friendlier as they served a large crowd that was there for an after-wedding party hosted by local DJ John Bosco. Spinning a range of hits old and new, he had everyone on their feet for most of the night.

O’Donnell’s is located in Burton Port, Co. Donegal

The Midway B&B

If you’re looking for the ultimate convenience, why not just sleep at the pub? In Donegal you can get pretty close with the next best thing: a nice cozy room above a pub at The Midway B&B. Consisting of 16 available rooms, the family-run establishment has been welcoming guests for over 35 years. The cozy front bar offers the feel of your home living room, while the huge backroom with spacious seating and a pool table is perfect for large groups that want to let loose a bit. Whether you’re booking a room for a weekend stay or just popping in for a pint, you don’t want to pass up an opportunity to try the area’s world-renowned trout or salmon.

The Midway B&B is located in Dungloe, Co. Donegal