One of our favourite haunt is Pure Camping on the Loop Head Peninsula in Clare. The camp is run by a friend of mine and I love it’s laid back atmosphere. The campsite is small and car free so it’s one of the few places that you can let kids roam unchecked and develop some much-needed independence. The camp is very child friendly with dogs, cats and chickens wandering around and a donkey that the kids can help feed twice a day.
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Pure Camping is an eco campsite and embraces a ‘Leave No Trace’ philosophy. It’s based in the village of Querrin, near Kilrush and Kilkee on the Loop Head Peninsula. It has solar showers and navy showers which are served by either rain water or well water, depending on rainfall and the hot water for the main toilet block is heated by solar panels or a wood stove, depending on the weather. They compost all of the food waste on site and provide logs made from waste coffee for the campfires and stoves.
Another huge benefit with this campsite is the provision of furnished bell tents, with or without a stove. They also have cabins of various sizes that come with a stove and indoor toilet, and a kitchen with the larger ones. This really suits people like us who don’t want to buy / store / transport a whole load of camping gear. If you’re someone who prefers the DIY route, you can just rent a pitch for a tent or camper van like with a traditional campsite.
The campsite also has a covered kitchen / canteen area with a gas cooker, sinks with running hot and cold water and lots of crockery and cutlery. Large cooler boxes are provided for those renting tents or chalets and there’s a fridge and freezer blocks in reception. This saves us buying / storing and bringing all that cooking equipment too!
My favourite part of the day here was always the evening, when people typically gather around the communal campfire. The campsite seems to attract like-minded people and we’ve had really interesting conversations and belly-laughs with other residents, something that just doesn’t happen in hotels.
The photo was taken from around the campsite on our first night there. The stars that followed were as stunning this colourful sky and a joy for those of us living in light-polluted city.
The nearest town to the campsite is Kilkee, a traditional Irish seaside conurbation. One of the must sees in Kilkee is the Pollock holes just up near the Diamond Rocks Cafe. This fabulous outcrop of rocks is completely invisible when the tide is in so check the local tide timetable and plan your trip accordingly. Our kids loved searching for fish and crabs in the pools left behind by the tide! The Diamond Cafe serves some lovely food and pre-Covid, used ‘proper’ crockery and cutlery. They had switched to disposable during Covid but hopefully they’ll revert back to reusables eventually.
Just up from Kilkee’s sandy beach you’ll find locally-baked treats in the Pantry Cafe on the main street, who were happy to give us coffee in our reusable cups!
The food in Nolan’s traditional fish and chip shop on the main street is also very good. I liked the fact that most of the packaging was cardboard but was disappointed that they didn’t appear to separate out their waste and also used plastic cutlery and some polystyrene packaging .
One of my top shops to visit on the peninsula is Kilbaha Gallery and Cafe. They have a whole host of locally made crafts and art and the staff are so friendly and nice and also happy to fill our reusable cups with their delicious coffee. I picked up this locally made soap there.
We stocked up on supplies in Supervalu in Kilrush. We could visit Aldi or Tesco in the town but we chose Supervalu because they’re an Irish company and let us use your own containers, pre-Covid.
If you’re planning on holidaying in Ireland here is a list of Sustainable Accommodation in Ireland & the UK