The Wild Atlantic Way epic points
The Wild Atlantic Way can be the journey of a lifetime with 2500 km of great coastal roads. It was Ireland’s first long distance touring route. Whether you want to be active and dive into the fresh wild Atlantic or simply want to embrace the most scenic points this epic route has something to offer to everyone will leave you with endless memories.
We asked our guides to give each a favourite spot of this world-famous tourist trail as its always a good indication what keeps being good, even after seeing it a dozen times. The Wild Atlantic way is just a project that keeps on giving and we are very proud to take our guests around this wonderful track.
Ailbhe: Downpatrick Head Co. Mayo
This would be the obvious choice as Ailbhe is from North Mayo. It’s a headland not too far of Ballycastle village and also near the site of the Ceide Fields. The views are just second to none, on the one site you look over the Atlantic and on the other side the Staggs of Broadhaven. You also find the ruins of a charge founded by St. Patrick. The cliffs are jaw dropping and really high, however it’s a little off the beaten track so it’s never really busy with tourists. It`s the perfect place for a long coastal walk. You will also find a statue of St. Patrick which is relativity new but was a replacement for a statue dating back to the early 19th century. The spectacular blowhole, known as Poll na Scantoine, is overlooked by a looking platform and lets you experience everything in full safety.
Enda: Mizen Head
It`s Ireland`s most South Westerly point, and home to a station that sends out signals in order to save lives off the rocky shoreline. I was Irelands first radio beacon. One of the main Transatlantic shopping routes goes really near by and Mizen Head for many of the seafarers was the last time they would see Europe. Or if they were lucky enough to get back the first point they were close to home again. The tip of the Island is almost separated by a deep gorge; however bridge was built to get access to the old signal station and the lighthouse. Inside the keeper’s house you will discover an expedition. Crossing the gorge is not for the faint hearted, it takes 99 steps and if you slightly scared of heights this could give you a bit of sweat. It’s an amazing spot, filled with history and great scenery and if you are lucky you can spot some seals, humpback whales and gannets. It`s one of these spots that really makes The Wild Atlantic Way.
Clodagh: Dun Aengus on the Aran Islands
Dun Aengus is located on the biggest of the Aran Islands, Inish More. The Islands are located just off the mainland between Doolin and Galway. It`s a magical place along The Wild Atlantic Way where most of the locals still speak Gealic and where you still get a real Irish feel. Dún Aonghasa is a semi-circular stone fort overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and its one of the best-preserved ones in the world. Most people cycle to the site from the pier where the ferry drops you. It’s a great cycle where you get a great feeling for the Island and get to spot some seals. We always ask people to be careful though as the vertical drop is immense, you feel really like you are at the end of the world with the next stop being America. When the site was excavated in the 1990s it was discovered that people were living there around 1500 BC which is amazing considering the location. Houses and dwelling were erected around 1100 BC and there was a remarkable network of defensive structures around 700BC.
Reinier: Croagh Patrick
As someone who likes to be active Croagh Patrick is one of those places that keeps on giving. During the season, I would climb this place about 20 times each year. Croagh Patrick is located near Westport in Co. Mayo. It`s a mountain that takes its name from St. Patrick and on one side is overlooking the tiny islands of Clew Bay and on the other side beautiful typical Irish bog-lands. You can start your trip with a visit to the National Famine Memorial and the 800-year-old Ballintumber Abbey, located just across the road. Now you have completed that you can start your hike up the mountain. When we say mountain, we mean hill as the total height is only about 700 meters. The hike has been a pilgrimage for over 5000 years when the pagans adopted Christianity just outside Westport. The locals call Croagh Patrick the Reek and each year, the Reek attracts about 1 million pilgrims and hillwalkers. On Reek Sunday, the last Sunday in July, around 25 thousand pilgrims climb the holy mountain, many in their bare feet.
Alex: Cliffs of Moher
Everyone must have seen pictures of these magnificent cliffs right in the middle of The Wild Atlantic Way. Situated in Co Clare right in the border with the Burren National Park and on a bright day you can actually spot the Aran Islands. The Cliffs are the most popular tourist attraction along The Wild Atlantic Way and stand about 214-meter-tall with a perfect drop into the ocean. They stretch for about 8 kilometres and with our small group tours of Ireland you get to hike the whole lot. Discover the unique colony of seabirds, counting upwards of 30,000 birds from 20 different species! It`s home to one of my favourite birds the Puffin. The biggest colony of Puffins you can find at the South side of the Cliffs.
So, if you have a favourite place along The Wild Atlantic Way let us know, share your comments with us. If you have any questions about our tours you can email us, give us a shout over the phone or use our friendly chat service. We have also tons of cool information on our website so happy scrolling.
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