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Top Rated Nightlife in Buncrana

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The Anchor Inn

This small city-center bar has become very popular, with the locals for a daytime drink, and it is well worth a visit day or night. As the name suggests, The Anchor has a maritime-style decor, clearly evident in the porthole windows along the walls and fishing nets hanging from the ceiling. Above the bar itself the ceiling is covered in bank notes from around the world, most of which have been donated by tourists appreciative of the warm surroundings and friendly welcome. Owner John Bell has done much to improve the interior, since he took over in the 1990s, and he is usually around himself - always a good sign. Also, he is so good at making original cocktails, that he has a regular spot on Channel 9, the local tv station.

Sandino's Cafe Bar

Projecting a Latin-American theme, this attractive café-bar has been a consistent winner with both locals and visitors. The customer base includes professionals, musicians, journalists and freedom-seekers. Giant authentic posters and pictures of Latin-American rebels (Sandino was one) and native craft-work establish the bar's image. The venue acts as a magnet for roots-acoustic live music. Traditional Irish or jazz features most Sunday afternoons and impromptu sessions featuring veterans and locals are frequent. Imported beers, fresh coffee and cappuccino are the mainstays, with soup and sandwiches also available. Each mid-November the cafe hosts the week-long Reel Film Festival, which screens little-seen movies that have real music as their central subject.

The River Inn & Cellars

Londonderry's oldest bar - it dates back to the 17th Century - is an excellent place to while away a few hours. The red-brick walls and the almost-but-not-quite rustic layout, make it a thoroughly enjoyable venue in which to relax and have a chat. The service is quick and very friendly, and the superb meals on offer make this seem more like a restaurant than just a bar. A top-class four-course Sunday lunch is also served between midday and 3.00pm. If you simply fancy a quick tea or coffee, these are available all day.

The Drift Inn

The Drift Inn is one of the most attractive bars in Buncrana. Once home to the town's railway station, it went through identity makeovers in the 1950s, 70s and 90s. Traditional Irish music is played at weekends. There is a friendly warm atmosphere, and regulars and visitors alike claim that the pub serves one of the best pints of Guinness in Ireland. The light and airy restaurant -- actually built on the former railway station platform -- has both bar food and a la carte menus. In 2001 it may go through another period of positive transition, as it is up for sale.

O'Flaherty's

Upon entering O'Flagherty's Bar, the first thing that will strike you is the numerous photographs on the wall, depicting Gaelic football champions and even some famous Irish dancers. Family owned and run, this has been made the unofficial headquarters of the local football team, who like to hang out here and drink. Usually packed to capacity at weekends and loud with chat and laughter, it also hosts live music frequently. Many of Buncrana's bars are quite nondescript, with little to recommend in them. This is an exception, and visitors will find local culture and craic a-plenty here.

Tul na Ri

Tul na Ri is one of the most famous pubs in Inishowen. It's an ideal place to spend either a relaxing afternoon or a great night out with friends. Situated in the busy market town of Carndonagh, the bar is adorned with antique furniture; and a luxurious atmosphere has been created throughout. It is also renowned in Donegal for its excellent food and ethnic home cooking. Bar food is served daily, and table menus come in after six pm. The Tul na Ri nightclub is a leading entertainment centre, not only during the summer season but also throughout the year. Discos are run every Friday, Saturday and Sunday night, with local DJs who play international and house music.

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