Folk Village Museum, Glencolmcille, Co. Donegal
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An Clachan - is built in the form of a village or 'clachan', where each house is an exact replica of the dwellings used by the local people in each of three successive centuries (18th, 19th, 20th) and is equipped with the furniture, artifacts and utensils of its particular period. Traditionally, cottages were located in clusters providing both company and protection and availing as the terrain of the area provided. Thus the 'clachan' here nestles close to a sheltering cliff.

Established in 1967, the folk museum was the brainchild of Fr. James McDyer, who moved to Glencolmcille in 1951. On his arrival, Fr. McDyer recognized the lack of proper services in the area and set about promoting industry and providing better facilities within the parish. The Folk Museum was central to Fr. McDyer's plan in maintaining the traditional culture of the Glencolmcille area.

Gleann Colm Cille (meaning Saint - "Colmcilles Valley") is dominated by the massive and strikingly beautiful headland known as Glen Head. Views of some of Ireland's most spectacular cliff scenery are to be seen from its summit, with its cliffs dropping precipitously some 700 feet into the Atlantic Ocean. While Gleann Cholm Cille is located at the end of a peninsula on the northwest coast of Ireland, as far from the big city as one could get, it is a thriving centre of culture. Its distance from major centres of population, while helping a unique way of life to survive, is a cause of economic and social problems. The people of the glen, or ‘in-through’ people as the inhabitants of "Carraig" parish are often called, have thus always had to make special efforts to counter the effects of isolation. No one exemplified those special efforts more than the former Parish Priest, the late James Canon McDyer. James McDyer was born in 1910 in Kilraine, near Glenties. When he came to Gleann Cholm Cille he found a community that seemed to be on its last legs, with no electricity, no public water supply, almost no roads. The area had endured decades of emigration, and those who remained lived on subsistence farming and fishing. A State which had been established to safeguard Gaelic culture looked the other way as one of the most significant examples of that culture was dying. Unwilling to accept such a fate, Fr. McDyer invigorated the local community and helped establish industries based on local resources - weaving, knitting and fish processing, and succeeded in bringing electricity and a water supply to the glen. The Folk Museum/village (An Clachán), the community hall (Halla Mhuire),and the holiday village will always be associated with him.

More about Irish Cottages you will find HERE.


20km west of Killybegs on the R263 Road in Glencolmcille. From Glencolmcille take an immediate left through the village. The Folk Museum is located about 2km further on your left - opposite the car park.


from Easter Saturday until the end of September. Monday-Saturday 10:00-18:00. Sunday 12:00-18:00


Adults €3
Child €2
Student/Senior/Group €2.30
Family €9.50


Tearooms, Cratf Shop, Toilet


Tel.: +353 (0) 74 97 30017

Attractions nearby

Assarancagh / Maghera Waterfall within 14.5 km
Cyndi Graham Handweaving Cottage within 24.4 km
Kilclooney Dolmen within 22.1 km
Maghera Caves and Beach within 13.5 km
Sheskin More Nature Reserve within 18.6 km
Slieve League within 9.5 km
St. John's Point Lighthouse within 22.9 km
Thatched Cottage near Clooney within 24.5 km
Thatched Cottage near Straboy within 7.7 km

C and C Parks

Tramore Beach Caravan and Camping Park within 18.3 km

Joe Pikey
2011-02-19 23:44:22
Very impressed at the authenticity and integritiy of The Glencolmcille Folk Village.
When we arrived at the Craft shop reception the staff were speaking Irish,this made a great impression on us.The thatched cottages and artifacets were almost spiritual,There is a great sense of past and peace here,from the Museum you are overlook the wild atlantic ocean and stunning Glen head.
Just enough light...
Gleann Colm Cille
Glencolmcille Folk Village Museum
Father McDyers Folk Village Museum
Stone Thatched Cottage