Loved Up in Lisdoonvarna

If you’ve been looking for love in all the wrong places, clearly you’ve never been to Lisdoonvarna. This County Clare town lives for l’amour.

There’s a Matchmaker Pub on the main street (inside the Imperial Hotel); two local residents call themselves professional matchmakers (Willie Daly, a horse dealer, and James White, an hotelier); and every autumn, the town hosts the month-long Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival ( Thousands of lovelorn singletons come in search of The One, and locals cheer them on. Up and down each street, every atmospheric corner is used for mixers and minglers. Residents stir the pot by hosting romantic breakfasts, dinners, games, and dances. So good are their intentions and so charming is their belief in true love—in the idea that there really is somebody out there for everybody, and that they might find each other in a far-flung corner of western Ireland—that you just may fall for it.

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