Connemara, the Burren, Mayo & the Aran Islands
Along the Wild Atlantic way travel west for wild mountainous landscapes, proud Gaelic communities, windswept rocky islands and traditional music filled pubs.
From the unique rocky alien limestone landscape of the Burren to the spectacular Aran Islands, the soaring mountains of Connemara National Park and the wild rugged peaks of Mayo, the central west coast of Ireland is a fascinating combination of tiny islands, secret beaches and coastal-scapes, rugged mountains, heathery bogs and quaint pubs.
The bohemian city of Galway with its labyrinth of cobbled streets, colourful facades and busy cafés is one of the most culturally-rich in Ireland. To the west lies Connemara and the Aran Islands with a vast number of heritage sites. In the north, rugged Mayo is one of Ireland’s best-kept secrets. A hiker’s paradise with challenging trails winding through unspoilt landscapes enjoy stunning mountain views sweeping down to the sea.
Known as the traditional music capital of Ireland, Clare offers natural beauty, ancient monuments as well as intimate towns and villages. The Cliffs of Moher, the limestone landscape of the Burren, the many natural caves and the breathtaking views of the Shannon estuary makes this the perfect backdrop for outdoor adventures.
Things to see and do in Connemara, the Burren, Mayo & the Aran Islands:
- The Cliffs of Moher are one of the most famous landmarks in Ireland. Though popular, with a bit of local knowledge, we’ll help you avoid the biggest tourist crowds
- Summit Croagh Patrick, called Ireland’s Holy Mountain for its ancient connection to St Patrick and his 40-day fast atop the mountain
- Explore Connemara National Park and the stunning but challenging peaks of the Twelve Bens Mountains
- Climb atop Mayo’s Mweelrea Mountain, the highest in Connaught, for stunning views and peak-bagging bragging rights
- Explore the Bohemian city of Galway, a window into Irish culture, for shopping, history and Ireland’s pub culture
- Walkthrough the lunar exposed-limestone landscapes of the Burren National Park, once inspiration on fantasy author JRR Tolkien
- Sail to the Aran Islands, an archipelago of 3 islands where Irish Gaelic is still spoken, and other traditions such as music and are still widespread. Find ancient ruins like Dun Aengus fort or the Worm Hole, once host to the Red Bull Cliff Diving Championships
- Learn about the interesting characters who once lived here, such as formidable 16th century Pirate Queen Grace O’Malley