6 wonderful images of Ireland in winter

Killarney National Park (Credit: Robert Fudali/Shutterstock)

Splintering ice, snow-cropped castles and salt-swept beaches: presenting winter in Ireland, in pictures.

Mount Errigal, Co. Donegal
Mount Errigal, Co. Donegal

1. Mount Errigal, County Donegal

One of Donegal’s Seven Sisters mountains, the sun rebounds brilliantly from Mount Errigal’s quartzite appearance, giving off a glorious pinkish glow – even in winter. Close to Glenveagh National Park, Mount Errigal is the tallest peak of the Derryveagh Mountains, guaranteeing you a majestic shot year-round. See if you can count all Seven Sisters: Errigal, Mackoght, Aghla Beg, Aghla Mór, Ardloughnabrackbaddy, Muckish and Crocknalaragagh.

Monea Castle, Co. Fermanagh
Monea Castle, Co. Fermanagh

2. Monea Castle, County Fermanagh

With a light frosting under their feet, the horses that play around Monea Castle are just one of the reasons this spot is so photogenic during winter. A little off the beaten track, this 17th century castle is ideal for photography – and a great spot for hide and seek!

Lough Gur, Limerick
Lough Gur, Limerick

3. Lough Gur, County Limerick

The sun has set over Lough Gur (as seen above) for over 6,000 years. The Neolithic people were the first to see its beauty and, thankfully, the area has stayed untouched since then. Winter visitors can look forward to astronomy talks at the nearby Dark Sky Park, launched by astronaut Al Worden in June, 2015. Families visiting the Heritage Centre might even catch a photo of Santa on his winter visit…

Oh! I long to see that churchyard by Lough Gur's romantic shore... where the wild dove and the raven like protecting spirits soar

Owen Bresnan, Poet
Mount Stewart, Co. Down
Mount Stewart, Co. Down

4. Mount Stewart, County Down

Bracing strolls on windswept days are one of winter’s great pleasures. For views and ambience, it would be tough to find a location so suitable as Mount Stewart. From the house to its expansive gardens on the shores of Strangford Lough, Mount Stewart has something special to offer and is open to visitors year-round.

Voted one of the top ten gardens in the world, Mount Stewart's sheltered wooded areas allow exotic plant life to flourish there in all seasons - in fact, it is home to the Chilean Fitzroya Tree, one of the oldest living trees in the world. Though the trademark red squirrels will be hibernating, you can still snap some beautiful images from the Temple of the Winds, perched above the water.

Mourne Mountains, Co. Down
Mourne Mountains, Co. Down

5. Mourne Mountains, County Down

Who can forget the icy wonderland of Narnia? Belfast-born author C.S. Lewis was reared on the clean air of the Mourne Mountains, while his mind was inspired by these surroundings to create the magical setting for his masterpiece, The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. Exploring the silent Mournes in winter, you almost expect to see the White Queen rounding a corner on her dog-sled...

Of the mountains, Lewis once commented, “I have seen landscapes, notably in the Mourne Mountains and southwards, which under a particular light made me feel that at any moment a giant might raise his head over the next ridge.” We concur.

Belfast City Hall, Co. Antrim
Belfast City Hall, Co. Antrim

6. Belfast City Hall, County Antrim

Belfast is a city made to be photographed, from its iconic yellow Samson and Goliath cranes, to the sinking Albert Clock, known as the city’s own Tower of Pisa. So where better to capture the winter wonderland of Northern Ireland than at Belfast’s City Hall? The Christmas market takes place on the grounds throughout November and December, while the Titanic Memorial Garden sits to the east of the building. The Titanic Monument and Memorial Plinth are surrounded by plants in shades of white, blue, silver and green, chosen to reflect the colours of water and ice.

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