The locals and the regular visitors to Dunfanaghy, Ireland know about Tramore Beach.
You can see the dreamy look in their eyes as they talk about it.
It’s kind of a secret yet it’s not.
You might read about it in a guidebook or on a website.
I found it in Lonely Planet.
Yet there’s no sign for this beach.
But ask a local and he or she will help you find your way to this magical place.
Tramore Beach isn’t just about the beach.
It’s also very much about the walk there.
And this is part of the appeal — it takes some effort to get there.
But what a walk it is!
Take the road out toward Horn Head from the center of Dunfanaghy.
Walk or drive.
I loved walking as it’s a beautiful walk and the drivers are used to people walking and running this road.
After crossing the bridge you’ll see a road just past Forest Lodge B&B.
Walk a short way down that road and you’ll find a parking lot.
Here you’ll see a trail that leads through the trees.
This is the beginning of the fun that awaits.
It’s a roller coaster ride through the sand dunes.
It’s such a kick to walk up and down the sand dunes and through the tall grass as you make your way to the beach itself.
You might even see folks sledding down some of the dunes.
And you’ll definitely get a good workout as you walk to the beach.
There’s no single path so take your pick.
You’ll end up at Tramore Beach regardless of the track you choose.
As you get a bit closer you’ll see the beach off in the distance.
I’m pretty sure my jaw dropped the first time I saw it.
Stop and take it in.
Snap some photos.
Breathe in the sea air.
But mostly relish in the beauty of nature that you’re surrounded by.
Once you get to Tramore Beach simply enjoy it.
The beach itself is about 2 miles long.
It’s a sandy stretch of gorgeousness.
Hopefully you’ve packed a snack or perhaps a lunch in your backpack.
Walk down the beach and find a spot to sit and have your treats.
There are some cool rocks at the far end (west end) of the beach that make a lovely spot for relaxing.
Then watch the waves roll in.
If it’s sunny soak up the sunshine.
Or maybe you want to play on the beach.
Whatever you fancy take the time to do it.
Chances are there will be a few other folks on the beach especially if it’s a nice day.
But Tramore Beach never feels crowded.
And while swimming is not recommended due to strong currents, there will be some folks who will go out in the water.
I don’t advise it.
It’s a magical place.
Yes, it takes some time and work to get to this dazzling beach.
You’re not going to pull up to a parking lot and walk 50 meters and be sitting on the sand.
But that’s what makes Tramore Beach so memorable and so enchanting.
It’s the long, sandy beach.
It’s the roller coaster trails through the sand dunes.
And it’s the “take your breath away” moment when you spot it off in the distance.
Tramore Beach is an experience.
Not just a destination.
So be sure it’s on your list for your Irish adventure to Dunfanaghy and northern County Donegal.
You really don’t want to miss it.