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“brimming with character!”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Dooey Hostel

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Dooey Hostel
Co Donegal, Ireland
Level Contributor
20 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“brimming with character!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 August 2011

This is definitely one of my favourite hostels in Ireland, or anywhere in the world for that matter! The location is stunning, great for walkers and hikers, and plenty of space for children to run around and go on adventures.

The facilities are basic but ample: each of the 8-bed dorms has its own kitchenette, shower and toilet, while the smaller private dorms upstairs share bathroom and kitchen facilities. Leo can be seen cleaning and mopping all through the day, so you can be assured that everything is clean regardless of the old and slightly worn feel to the building - and the age of the building does add to it's charm!

There is a large and comfortable common room with a stereo and a selection of Irish CDs, a TV (although I never once saw anyone watch tv in the week I stayed here!), a small library, and even a couple of musical instruments waiting to be played. In is in the common room that you will often find traditional music sessions or sing songs going long into the night!

I would recommend the 8 bed dorms for a good quiet night's sleep, as the smaller rooms are located right next to the common room and can be a little noisy at night. The beds are very comfy and the sounds of the sea below will sooth you off to sleep.

The definite highlight of your stay in Dooey Hostel will you be your interactions with Mary and Leo. This mother and son team who run the hostel epitomise the reputation of the Irish as the most welcoming people in the world, and the people of rural donegal are surely Ireland's greatest ambassadors with the genuine "make yourself at home" atmosphere that they create.
Warm, entertaining, and a great conversationalist, Leo will go out of his way to make sure you feel at home and anything you ask of him is never too much trouble.
Mary is like a one-woman comedy show. It is impossible to guess her age as; while she is well passed retirement age, she is as fit as a fiddle and has the mischievous character of a schoolgirl. She is characterised by the glint in the eye, her wry smile and knockout tongue-in-cheek sense of humour, not to forget her wild-as-the-heathers hairdo, which she refers to as "my auld fekan' dreadlocks!" She is kind of lovingly eccentric granny we all dream of having, and no doubt throughout her stay she will refer to you as "a pháistí" (my dear children).

I will definitley be back to stay at Dooey Hostel

Room Tip: For a quiet night's sleep opt for a bed in one of the 8 bed dorms.
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Jeniba
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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20 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    2
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Belfast
Level Contributor
28 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 May 2011

I just love this place!! Although i do agree with a previous reviewer in saying that it is not for everyone. Mary and Leo (who run the hostel) are absolutely fantastic, there is never a dull moment. The hostel area is not up to much and its safety may be questionable but what it lacks here it certianly makes up for in character. The camping area is beautiful and the views are fantastic. There are a few bars within walking distance and my live music and craic is unbeatable. The hostel is at the top of a hill and the road is in very bad shape so if the weather is bad it could make driving very difficult but Leo is on a mission to get the road sorted!!!
I recommed camping for a few nights, swimming in the sea and a few pints in Roartys (i think thats the good bar!) It really is second to none:-)

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank BelfastTraveller0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 December 2010

The hostel is hard to find at first but on top of a big hill with an amazing view over the beach. The silence is unbelievable, just sheep and waves. Part of the inner wall of the hostel is actually bare rock face from the mountain.

There are 3 pubs in the village so lots of nightlife if you want it with trad music, but also opportunities to learn Irish language at the local college Oideas Gael in season.
There is plenty of hiking for those who want it, a cafe and a mini-mart in the village.

Mary who runs the hostel is a lady you won't forget and always good for a chat and a cup of tea and biscuit in the morning.

It's a very basic hostel with dorm style rooms but the surroundings and local atmosphere are worth it. It has cooking and washing facilities but the launderette is in the village below.

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Mairiphinc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ann arbor, MI
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 September 2010

i love this hostel!!!
the accomodations are quite spartan, to say the least, however this is one of the best place i've stayed in ireland. and there's only one reason..."mad" Mary O’Donnell!!!
warmly welcomed with a pot of hot tea after a day of hiking, mary (the owner) kept us thoroughly entertained. this woman IS the definition of local color.
built into the side of the mountain, Dooey Hostel is all about location.
true, the showers were a bit spotty at times, but the beds were adequate.
remember this IS a hostel, not a 5-star B+B

  • Stayed October 2009, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank loki666
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Dooey Hostel

Property: Dooey Hostel
Address: Glencolmcille, Ireland
Region: Ireland > County Donegal > Glencolmcille
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 3 Speciality Lodging in Glencolmcille
Number of rooms: 10
Also Known As:
Dooey Hostel Glencolmcille, Ireland - County Donegal

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