We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Clear up your rubbish Tory residents.”
Review of Tory Island

Ranked #56 of 230 things to do in County Donegal
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Located only 11 kilometers from the mainland of Ireland, this small island features important historic attractions and excellent opportunities for bird watching.
Reviewed April 21, 2013

As an Irish citizen, I am shocked by the dumping of rubbish by the residents on Tory island. Information boards for tourists ask for us to Respect The Environment. Tory island residents need to model this first.
I am aware that dealing with rubbish on an island is a challenge, however,other islands for example the Shetlands have a waste management strategy which people could learn from.
We visited for a day trip. As keen walkers ,we completed the full loop walk of 12 kilometers. The section between West town and east town was the worst for a rubbish.The channels either side of roadway were full of plastic bottles, drinks cans, and various other forms of rubbish. We visited at the start of the season, and much of the rubbish was old, so tourists cannot be blamed for this.
It was upsetting to see beautiful rocky inlets on the east side clogged with very old rusting items and plastic, clearly dumps for residents large household refuse. This is not rubbish that has drifted in from the sea. The cliffs on this eastern end are stunning and unusual in shape, a fabulous natural attraction ruined by human dumping nearby.

The siteing of a newer 'official' dump behind the chlldren's playground is in my view, disgraceful. I respectfully suggest that islanders develop a better waste management strategy.

The western end of the island is less polluted,though some homesteads in the west town have a lot of rubbish and rusting items in their haggards. It is very clear to a visitor like me which households are making an effort to add to the beauty of the island and which are human hazards to the landscape.
The island is a national treasure in terms of natural beauty, birdlife and location.
Clean up your island Tory residents!

20  Thank AprilShannon2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (73)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
All reviews
"social club"
in 7 reviews
"day trip"
in 7 reviews
"an overnight stay"
in 3 reviews
"east town"
in 2 reviews
"ferry journey"
in 2 reviews
"art gallery"
in 3 reviews
"early hours"
in 2 reviews
"local cafe"
in 2 reviews
"wild atlantic way"
in 4 reviews
"local man"
in 2 reviews
"rock pools"
in 2 reviews
"local artists"
in 2 reviews
"the cliff"
in 3 reviews
in 12 reviews
in 30 reviews
in 14 reviews
in 9 reviews

45 - 49 of 73 reviews

Reviewed December 19, 2012

Tory Island was the most middling destination I have ever visited. The service from tory fast ferry was awful, the staff were terribly rude and provided no service what so ever. Upon arriving on the island I met with a few of the locals who were really friendly and made me feel at home. The music and the drink at the end of the night was wonderful and made the trip worthwhile. If it wasn't for the great musicians on the island this trip would have been awful. So if you plan on a visit here, make sure you're willing to put up with the terrible tory fast ferry service and have a love for the great traditional music that ireland has to offer.

19  Thank Ataxia123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 29, 2012

3 of us went to Tory last Sunday - not for the first time, as I find it to be a beautiful and peaceful place and have gone every Summer for the past 3 years.
The crossing on the Tór Mór was lovely, the sea as calm as I've ever seen it and the sun was shining.
We brought a picnic as we'd been stung before with the far too highly priced food in both the cafe and hotel. We did buy 2 teas in the cafe this time - which cost us €4.80!! c'mon!
We hired 3 bikes at €10 each for the day which we found reasonable, though a friendly smile wouldn't have gone amiss as we handed over our €30!
The island itself is beautiful and the cliffs just amazing.
However... we were disgusted at the dumping of old washing machines, metal, car parts etc. over the edge of one of these cliffs - beside where the yellow digger sits. Unforgivable anywhere, but especially so in a place of such natural beauty.
Then the rabbits.....the dead rabbits.
Why oh why oh why don't you pick up the poor dead rabbits - myxamatosis I believe?
The smell as we passed the grotto on our way to the lighthouse should've warned us. There were no fewer than 9 carcasses lying on the road alone and numerous others in the fields! It was very very distressing and beyond disgusting. This must be dealt with, it has to be unhealthy?
We watched the Donegal match in the social club which was great craic... though a can of coke was €2.40!! ah now!
We had a lovely day out nonetheless, but surely these are major issues that have to be addressed if you want to attract people to your beautiful island?

12  Thank Breege D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 28, 2012

So for something different this August bank holiday (2012) a friend and I signed up to an adventure weekend with Far and Wild, located on Tory Island in Donegal. An early morning start with a 3 hour drive and 50 minute ferry trip had us arrive on this remote and stunning little pocket of Ireland and I was instantly glad to have made the effort to come along. Greeted by the 'King of Tory' in the friendliest manner then transported by a local to our campsite to meet our fellow adventurers. The camp site was on the east side of the island and on land beside a lovely little bunglaow owned by Sabba. He was super fiendly and accommodating, allowing us to use his facilities. For those who want to visit the island but not camp, Sabba is launching a little bed and breaksfast in his holiday home. It is a gorgeous cottage style house, very well maintained and refurbished to high standsrds with some of the most stunning scenery I have ever witnessed just a stones throw away. We went on this adventure weekend with Far and Wild...a social enterprise aimed at personal development and environmental awareness, launched by Lawrence McBride. Please see http://www.farandwild.co.uk/ for details. The weekend involved camping, coasteering, rock climbing, sea kayaking and hill walking. Lawrence is professional, flexible and excellent at adapting to the requirements of his clients. His prices are very reasonable and all food was included on our cost. I couldn't recommend Far and Wild highly enough. As for Tory, the people are friendly and the island feels untouched by tourism. With only approx 120 people living there year round and an interesting history along with craggy bays, stunning viewpoints and the fabulous Tor Mor to witness, this island has a lot to offer to a wide range of poeple. I will definitely be back next summer nd hopefully get to do the August bank holiday adventure weekend again too next summer.

4  Thank JayBeck
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed August 20, 2012

Having heard so much about Tory Island , myself and a few actor friends decided to visit last weekend . First impressions with me last and I have to say that from the word go our trip was just filled with fun and laughter. The ferry over is great , and we had the fortune of meeting one of the islands characters , a man called "John the funny man" , despite nearly knocking e overboard about ten times he was great crack , although promised to buy us a pint in the club that night , and strangely dissapeared :) . The journey over has some breathtaking scenery, and it's hard to belive that you are stil in Ireland , with the coastline resembling a sight from a tropical region such as Hawaii etc . Upon arrival at Tory Harbour our exceitment grew as we saw the first the first time Tory village , and all the different little antiquities of the island. Our friends who had travelled ahead met us at the harbour , and led the way to the hostel, which is only about a 2 minute walk flanked by the sea . I have the say the hostel was not what I was expecting , having stayed in numerous hostels around the world, you get used to the almost prison like conditions but this was different . Our first sight was a lovely house with a decking and bench and chairs outside and strangely a falcon, the rebel bird who had flown the coop from it's owners our new friends Carl and Claire whom had travelled to retrieve the bird whom they aptly named "Tory" . The hostel has a very modern and spacious communal kitchen area , with a couch , a flat screen tv , all the basic kitchen essentials such as cooker , microwave , toaster , fridge etc . It also has a table and chairs , along with a counter surrounded by stools. The window from the kitchen looks out on the harbour and the coast . The rooms were quite large , and full bedding , pillows etc were provided, also in the room was a flatscreen tv , books had been provided and an en suite bathroom with walk in shower , sink etc . The view from our room was the same as from the kitchen and really was like looking out at another world . Deirdre the hostel owner is a lovely very friendly woman , who will do anything to accomodate her guests . The cafe is run by a lovely girl called Winnie , who's a bit shy at the singing , but great at the cooking , was ok because me and my friends made up for the singing must to the annoyance i'm sure of others . The menu in the cafe is quite extensive but you have to like chips ;) . I really recommend the curry or fresh fish and chips . Alcohol can also be purchased in the cafe . Patsy really has to met to be belived , he is the KIng of Tory a title which he clearly revels in , most noted y the number plate on his car saying "King of Tory". Never will you meet such an energetic man , he welcomes all vistors to the island , plays the accordian , sings , and is great laugh a true character and a credit to the island. One must note that on Tory time stops (Unless your rushing for a ferry with 30 seconds to spare) . There is no need to keep track of time on Tory , everything just kind of balances on its own, such as the club (Celili Hall) which opens roughly about 11pm , but you can still be there at 7am , with the music still playing and the drink still flowing . The band are fantastic , and sing and play an array of songs well into the early hours . The islanders themselves are a great bunch of people , extremely friendly and very welcoming , we stayed drinking and singing with them till well past dawn . You really get jealous of the fantastic life that they must lead , most noted from the fact that anyone islander who leaves , is never away for long , and after spending time there myself you can see why . So a few hours sleep, big fry , and we were off to explore the island thankfully blessed with great weather and a beaming sun. Nothing can prepare you for the sights that you wil witness on this island , it really begins to take a grip on you , the magic of Tory they call it . As we walk along the road weavuing in and out of the landscape , there are very little cars , everything is just so quiet , bar the roar of the sea below us . Hidden treasures are everywhere , be it the little grotto , or the secluded coves and old harbour . The hike up to balors fort opens up the eyes to a spectacular view of both the whole island , and the strangest thing that we met a group of bikers coming down , they were from a gang called "Balors Demons", sound bunch of people , they were up visiting the grave of one of their crew. The wishing stone is at the top of balors fort at the cliff edge , i was all for testing out the theory of standing on the stone and closing my eyes and turning three times , but when i got there my mind was changed , it's a hell of a long way down . We got out three stones instead onto the rock, and made our wishes. I'm not a spiritual person at all, but something really touched me about Tory , it is a place where people can go to find themselves , get clarity on issues , explore , socialise etc , it really has something for everyone , and it won't be long before I return. Oh and forgot to mention Tory has a new priest , he's very modern to the fact they we didn't even suspect he could be a priest , he's very welcoming , and if his bikes outside his house just before the shop , he encourages peoples to drop in for a cup of tea and a chat .

8  Thank derekosullivanactor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Tory Island also viewed

Donegal Town, County Donegal
Kincasslagh, County Donegal
County Donegal, Ireland

Been to Tory Island? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing