Counties of Ireland - Leitrim

2,356,991 County Leitrim Diaspora around the world

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Ireland's President Higgins family message

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County Leitrim coat of arms

The least populated county in all of Ireland, sparse Co. Leitrim has only around 31,000 people living on its 1,590 square kilometres. Unsurprisingly, Leitrim is also the least known-about county in Ireland and, perhaps unfairly, doesn't really get its due.

Parkes Castle and Lough Gill, Kilmore, Fivemilebourne, Co. Leitrim,

Not that Leitrim has no draws. Poet W.B. Yeats was quite taken with the many landscapes of Leitrim and its natural beauty. One of his most famous poems, The Rose of Inishfree, is about the isle of Inishfree on Lough Gill. Yeats also penned the romantic Glencar Waterfall, which cascades just outside Manorhamilton, in The Stolen Child.

Glencar Waterfall

Carrick-on-Shannon is Leitrim's county town. A bustling place of fewer than 5000 residents, it, like many aspects of southern Leitrim, is defined by the stately River Shannon. The Shannon is linked to the River Erne via a canal here, while huge Lough Allen sprawls across the centre of the county, making Leitrim an ideal place for water sports and fishing.

Carrick-on-Shannon, County Leitrim

The northwest part of the county is dominated by mountains and eventually touches the Atlantic Ocean. The coastline here at Tullaghan is the single shortest bit of county coastline in Ireland – a mere 2.5 kilometres long. Leitrim also provides Co. Donegal's only link to the Republic of Ireland along its roughly 10-kilometre long border.

Swans on Glencar Lake, County Leitrim

Co. Leitrim has seen its share of problems through years, particularly during the Great Famine, when the population here was devastated by starvation and emigration. Interestingly because of this, you are more likely to meet someone with Leitrim roots outside of Ireland than you are to meet someone from Leitrim within Ireland.

Actor James Cagney had family roots in Co. Leitrim, and Irish actor Patrick McGoohan of the TV series "Secret Agent/Danger Man" and Columbo fame spent part of his childhood in Drumreilly. And 1994 Eurovision winner, Charlie McGettigan lives in Drumshanbo, Co. Leitrim.

Glenview Folk Museum is Leitrim's only museum and is on-site with a superb private collection of over 6000 antique, historical and novel items.

101 Must-Do’ ways to live your regional connection.

Our 101 team have been working with local tourism, business, community and Council initiatives to bring you some of the best ways for you to live your connection to Leitrim.

Top 20 Surnames from Leitrim

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8 Day Leitrim Region and Best of Ireland Tour
Look beyond the amazing landscape Ireland has to offer and launch your own personal journey to the heart of Ireland with experiences crafted around your interests. Find out more »
Leitrim Irish 4 Day Getaway
Step back in time. Step forward in your understanding of who you think you are. Get a taste of what is at the essence of Ireland. Find out more »
Cultural Map of Ireland