Doolin Cave, Co. Clare, Ireland
The Doolin Cave is located in The Burren, a region of geological interest primarily located in County Clare. The landscape is dominated by limestone karsts with underground drainage systems that form caves. The word Burren or Boireann in Irish means, "great rock."
|The Poulnabrone dolmen is also located in the Burren. |
It is the oldest megalithic monument in Ireland.
|The Great Stalactite|
|Closeup of the Great Stalactite|
The main attraction of the Doolin Cave is the Great Stalactite. At 23 feet (7.3 meters) long it is the longest free-hanging stalactite in Europe. It was discovered in 1952 by J.M. Dickenson and Brian Varley. Entry required a long and difficult crawl but now the cave entry has been widened to allow for tourists.
All the cave tours are guided. Our guide, Gary, was wonderful but I can imagine his knees must be screaming after climbing up and down those steps six times a day.
There is also a free nature trail on the grounds for visitors to explore. Unfortunately, I did not get to see the nature trail because of the weather. Tickets can be purchased online or at the Visitor Center which also houses a charming little cafe and gift shop.
Doolin Cave is also a member of the Burren Ecotourism Network which promotes sustainable tourism in the Burren.