Clifden Schoolhouse, Connemara, County Galway, Ireland

Unique and historic 19th century holiday rental home with 4 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms, the second oldest building in the heart of charming Clifden village in the scenic Connemara area of County Galway in the West of Ireland.

19th Century stone fireplace at the Schoolhouse holiday house in Clifden
Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 4
Accommodates: 8
Weekly Rates: € 900 / € 1400 / € 1800
Heat & Electricity: Additional, charged at cost by meter reading
Security Deposit: € 250 due on arrival


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Amenities Include:

Four ensuite bedrooms, each enjoying great privacy
Modern & well-supplied cook’s kitchen, open living space
Cathedral windows, warm stone hearth, TV & DVD
Walking distance to village center, close to golf, fishing, riding & activities

House Description:

Four bedroom, four bathroom historical home, a thoughtful and interesting renovation of the old Church of Ireland school house on Church Hill overlooking the completely charming village of Clifden. Original stone walls, fireplaces and wood details have been preserved in the unique transformation into a spacious, comfortable and convenient self-catering vacation home. Lots of open communal and lounging space, with private ensuite bedrooms on two levels. A great and truly unusual home, wonderful for living in and exploring Clifden, and touring in the great West of Ireland.

Sitting Room

Enter the striking stone building from one of two front doors, both painted a sweet pink color, into the high cathedral ceilinged sitting room.  The living and dining areas have yellow or white walls and open to the kitchen in an L-shape, with a spiral staircase on one side of the house, the original pine steps on the other. An overhang above the dining table and kitchen created by the structure of the second floor houses a balcony above, with an additional seating area in the overlooking the living room on one side, with large windows on the other.

The large comfortable leather sofa and red velvet easy chairs face either the fireplace or the entertainment table with TV & DVD player, depending on the season and whimsy of the caretaker.  Large cathedral arched windows let in lots of lovely light. It’s a peaceful, relaxing and comfy space to read, hang out and lounge.

Dining Area & Kitchen

Adjacent to the sitting room, under the bright front windows and beneath the upstairs overhang, the dining area opens to the kitchen. An antique pine table seats 8 comfortably, with country style wooden chairs and occasional seats.

The kitchen is not large, but is creatively designed, nicely portioned for the long space and very well-supplied for cooks on holiday.  Appliances and supplies include stovetop, oven, fridge/freezer, dishwasher, microwave and all the creature comforts of home like toasters and kettles and nice cutlery.

A spiral staircase lies beyond the kitchen at the front entrance, and leads directly up to the King bedroom upstairs. The original pine stairs are located at the opposite end of the house past the dining area.


Two of the bedrooms are on the ground floor, two are on the upper floor, with two on either side of the house, so that there ends up being one ground floor and one upstairs bedroom on either side of the main living space – this, coupled with the fact that each bedroom is ensuite, provides excellent privacy.

Bedroom 1, ground floor: King bed, antique pine furniture, and an ensuite bathroom with bathtub.

Bedroom 2, ground floor: Standard double bed in the smallest of the four bedrooms, with antique furnishings and large ensuite bathroom with shower.

Bedroom 3, upstairs: King bed and an extra full size bed in this, the largest of the four rooms. It would be perfect for a smaller family unit traveling together within a larger group. The metal spiral staircase leads directly into this room, which has antique furniture, occasional chairs and an ensuite bathroom with shower.

Bedroom 4, upstairs: Queen size bed in a large room with dressing table, stone fireplace, and large bathroom with bathtub. This bedroom is accessed by a pine staircase that is original to the old Church of Ireland building.

The upstairs bedrooms are divided by a long balcony seating area, with chairs, tables and large windows, overlooking the sitting room below. A perfect place for night owls and early risers to enjoy a book, crossword puzzle or the other relaxing activities of holiday makers.


The grounds are simple but lovely, with mature vegetation and flowers, an uneven lawn area in the back (adorable bunnies were scampering around on our last visit!) and a few chairs on the front perch overlooking the village. Part of the charm of this unique holiday rental is its position, just a few steps away from the village bustle of Clifden, so that the town almost feels like an extension of the house – the heart of Clifden just beyond your front yard!


The Connemara area of Galway is pretty stunning, actually. Often described as “haunting” and “wild” it offers some legendary scenery. Right in Clifden, the town itself is about 45 – 50 minutes from the City of Galway.

There is a large sandy beach a few miles down the road, and numerous beautiful seaside spots all along the Sky Road and smaller lanes off-shooting toward the water. Cleggan is a few miles north, with pubs, horseback riding and boat trips to Inishboffen. Westport, about 45 minutes to an hour north, is lots of fun, full of talented musicians and accessed by the stunning drive along the Westport road, past Killary Fjord (not to be missed!) and other hold-your-breath beautiful scenery.

Clifden: Right outside you door, 1 minute.
Cleggan: 5 miles, 10 minutes
48 miles, about fifty minutes, a totally gorgeous drive.
Shannon airport
: 106 miles, approximately 2.5 hours
Westport: 45 miles,  50 minutes of stunning beautiful scenery.
Dublin: 180 miles, just about 3.5 hours

Clifden Schoolhouse Rental Details:
The Schoolhouse in Clifden rents Saturday to Saturday in the high season, off-dates may be possible in the shoulder months. 

Weekly Rates
Low Season, October to April, not including holidays: € 900
Mid Season, May to mid-June, & September & Easter: € 1400
High Season, Mid-June, July, August & Christmas & NY: € 1800

Heat & Electricity
Extra, charged at cost by meter reading.

Security Deposit
A refundable security deposit of € 250 is due in cash on arrival.


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Check-in time is after 4pm.
Check-out time is before 10:00am.

Security Deposit:

The Schoolhouse requires a refundable security/damage deposit of €250 is due on arrival and refunded, less cost of heat and electricity and any damages, at or just after departure.

Accessibility Notice:

This beautifully renovated Irish home offers good accessibility for those with moderate to limited mobility. There are two ensuite bedrooms on the ground floor, one with a shower stall. The exterior stone steps leading into the house may be a bit uneven for those using walkers, crutches or canes, however.


Between the views, the archaeological sites, natural landscapes, heritage centers, and local craftsman commerce there is no shortage of things to do and see in this part of the country.

Irish knit and fisherman’s sweaters, Clifden marble, lace, local artists and area specialty foods are part of the diverse shopping available in and around Clifden. The Whitethorn Gallery, with gorgeous prints from regional artists available for sale, many featuring the stunning local landscapes and Connemara scenes – you might take a bit of your holiday home with you.

The Connemara and West Galway up toward Mayo have some of the most scenic driving on the island. There are at least 20 self-guided walks through the area that will take your breath away.

Within very short drives are the following famous and magnificent (not hyperbole – they are truly stunning) Irish landscapes:
Connemara National Park– 3000 acres of woodlands, bogs and mountains. The road from Roundstone to Clifden is one of the most interesting and unusual drives you”re likely to traverse.
Horses & Equestrian activities – This is Connemara pony territory, with hourly and day-trip horse rentals available in Cleggan and other nearby towns as well.

Kylmore Abbey – Benedictine abbey, gothic church and Victorian walled gardens. You’ve likely seen this in photos, and it is a must-see in person.
Ballynahinch Castle – Gardens, walks, afternoon teas, as well as shooting and angling in season.
Innishboffin and Aran Islands –
Beautiful walks, beaches and ancient ruins to explore.

Connemara Golf Club – A championship links course overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
Ballyconneely Golf Club – an 18-hole course is about 10 miles away.
Cruises and Boat Charters – Killary Fjord cruises and coastal boat charters to tour the Connemara coast by sea.
Scuba diving, waterskiing, windsurfing, kayaking – There is no shortage of opportunities for fun in the Irish summer sun. We can send you loads of information about planning your outdoor adventures while in Clifden.


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About Clifden:

Read through our archives, tips, hints, and suggested itineraries for visiting and staying in the Connemara, County Galway, Ireland.

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