The famous Cliffs of Moher

The Cliffs of Moher are definitely one of the most important sights in Ireland. And rightly so! I’ve been there several times and love coming back!

View from Moher cliff walk towards O´Brien´s Tower
View from Moher cliff walk towards O´Brien´s Tower (photo: Ulrich Knüppel-Gertberg)


Imagine you are standing on the edge of a cliff and 200 metres below you the surf crashes foaming against the rocks. The scene is accompanied by screeching and whistling as thousands of seabirds nest in the almost vertical wall.

Again and again, birds plunge into the depths, circle above the surf and then plunge into the waves and, with a fish in their beaks, are carried back up to their nests by the steady westerly wind.

You can follow the small path along the cliffs for a while. Always along the edge of the cliffs, you can enjoy the view of the sea from your high vantage point – an inspiring expanse – next stop America!

Seabirds at the Cliffs of Moher
Seabirds at the Cliffs of Moher (photo: Ulrich Knüppel-Gertberg)

The Cliffs of Moher are not the highest, but probably the most famous cliffs in Ireland. And that’s saying something, because the Irish coasts offer plenty of high and steep cliffs!

Incidentally, we come from Germany and have been living in Ireland as a second home for several years. We have travelled the island extensively many times and therefore know it quite well. In the summer months we run our motorbike rental business here south of Dublin ( and also offer guest rooms (

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Let`s take a closer look on the Cliffs of Moher now…

Introduction to the Cliffs of Moher

In Irish Gaelic, the cliffs are called Aillte an Mhotair. They stretch for around 14 kilometres along the west coast of Ireland and are one of the most important sights on the Wild Atlantic Way.

The cliffs rise between 120 metres and over 200 metres above the sea. The highest point at 214 metres is at O ‘Brien’s Tower at the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Centre.

The tower was built in 1835 as the cliffs became an increasingly popular tourist destination. In good weather, you can see the Aran Islands in Galway Bay from the tower, as well as Loop Head further south.

But even if visibility is not so good, you will probably be able to recognise Moher Tower to the south. A fort once stood here, which was called Mothair in Irish, from which the name Cliffs of Moher was derived.

Seagull at the Cliffs of Moher
Seagull at the Cliffs of Moher (photo: Ulrich Knüppel-Gertberg)

To the north of the cliffs lies the rocky area of the Burren. Together with the Burren, the Cliffs of Moher form a joint geopark.

The cliffs were formed around 300 million years ago, initially as sedimentary deposits from a river delta. The sediment piled up, compacted and formed today’s cliffs. Tectonic shifts caused the seabed to uplift and the fault edge became today’s cliffs.

There are plenty of fossils in the rocky outcrop and thousands of years of sea erosion have formed caves, pinnacles and small islands along the cliffs.

An estimated 30,000 breeding pairs of 20 species of seabirds breed on the cliffs every year. Probably the prettiest bird is the Atlantic Puffin, or puffin, which is easy to spot with its large colourful beak.

O´Brien´s Tower at the Cliffs of Moher
O´Brien´s Tower at the Cliffs of Moher (photo: Ulrich Knüppel-Gertberg)

Visiting the Cliffs of Moher

The Cliffs of Moher are located on the west coast of Ireland, a little south of the city of Galway, or more precisely, between Doolin and Liscannor.

The Cliffs of Moher Visitor Centre is located roughly halfway between the two towns of Doolin and Liscannor.

Where something is particularly beautiful and well-known, a lot of people naturally come to see it – and this is also the case here. But don’t be put off by the coaches in the car park. The site is very spacious and the people are well spread out.

From the car park, walk about 100 metres to the entrance. A little further on you will find the Visitor Centre, which is built into the hillside like a cave.

In the visitor centre you will find various shops, a café-restaurant and a very interesting exhibition about the cliffs. See also:

Cliffs of Moher in morning mist
Cliffs of Moher in morning mist (photo: Ulrich Knüppel-Gertberg)

A little further on, you will come to the cliffs. If you are prepared to walk a few metres, you have the best chance of finding your own personal box seat on the cliffs. Simply follow the cliff path a little to the left or right along the cliffs.

To the right, first climb a few steps up to O’Brien’s Tower, a beautiful vantage point on a viewing platform. From there, you can continue along the path.

And if you’d rather have fewer people around you, it’s best to come early in the morning or in the evening, when there are far fewer visitors on the cliffs.

What else you can see in the area

You can even follow the cliff path for a very long time and turn it into a hike. The Cliffs of Moher Coastal Walk leads between the two towns of Doolin and Liscannor along the edge of the cliffs. At around 20 kilometres long, it is easy to complete in one day. It is easy to walk, but you should be reasonably free from giddiness as it leads along the edge of the cliffs, sometimes very close and without railings. See:

Doonagore Castle near Doolin
Doonagore Castle near Doolin (photo: Ulrich Knüppel-Gertberg)

If you like hiking, you should take a closer look at the Burren area to the north of the cliffs. It offers plenty of exciting hiking trails, as well as several stalactite caves, such as Ailwee Cave, and the Poulnabrone Dolmen, which is several thousand years old. For the Burren, see also:

At Doolin Pier you will find ferries to the Aran Islands, see: You can also take a boat trip to the Cliffs of Moher and admire them from the water. See:

If you follow the coast southwards, you can visit the beautiful Loophead Peninsula. At its far end is the Loophead Lighthouse, perched high above the rugged cliffs. See:


If you are visiting the west coast of Ireland, then you should definitely include the Cliffs of Moher in your tour.

There are higher cliffs in Europe and also on the island of Ireland, but these are really incredibly impressive because they stand almost vertically, over 200 metres high above sea level.

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The Burren to the north of the cliffs is also well worth seeing, as is the Loophead peninsula with the beautiful Loophead Lighthouse to the south.

You are here on the Wild Atlantic Way, the wild west coast of Ireland, and you can’t really go wrong here, as the coast offers beautiful highlights every few kilometres. Keep your eyes open and stay on the small roads by the water and you’ll be in the right place!

With this in mind, have fun at the Cliffs of Moher!

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Picture credits cover picture: Cliffs of Moher, photo by Ulrich Knüppel-Gertberg (

Uli Written by:

Hello and welcome to my blog. Originating from Germany, my family and I now live in Ireland (at least part time). We have travelled this amazing isle many times and know many parts of it very well. In this blog, I would like to share valuabe tips and information for your next trip to Ireland with you. Enjoy the content, yours, Ulrich Knüppel-Gertberg