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If you love the sea, you may never want to leave Achill Island. No fewer than five Blue Flag beaches line its flawless shores, and the Atlantic Drive around its coast embraces 40km of heavenly scenery and historic heritage.
Keem Bay is a flawless horseshoe bay sheltering a stunning Blue Flag beach at the head of a valley between the cliffs of Benmore to the west and Croaghaun mountain on the east. Visit after heavy rain to search for the purple semi-precious stone amethyst, which lies in a seam crossed by the access road.
The tower at Kildavnet is a textbook example of a 15th-century tower house. Associated locally with Grace O'Malley or Granuaile, the tower is one of several such fortresses the pirate queen established along the western seaboard in the 16th century.
The Atlantic Drive covers 40 km of awe-inspiring coastal scenery that can be toured by car but is best appreciated by bicycle. It comprises two loops of roughly equal lengths, with the Currane loop gentler on cyclists due to its few hills. The Achill Island loop has several steep climbs, but the views are worth it. You can start both loops at Achill Sound.
The Deserted Village at Slievemore is a poignant reminder of a bygone age. Some 80 derelict stone cottages are scattered around the base of the regal Slievemore mountain, offering memorable insights into the life of a traditional Achill islander.
You have to work to reveal the charms of Annagh, on the north side of Achill Island, which is accessible only on foot or by boat. This heavenly spot is backed on three sides by towering cliffs, with the fourth side overlooking Blacksod Bay. The freshwater lake here is the lowest corrie lake in the country. You will also find a megalithic tomb here.
Achill is home to no less than five Blue Flag beaches. These examples of seaside perfection lie at Keem Bay, Trawmore, the Silver Strand, the Golden Strand, and Dooega.
Scoil Acla is a summer school celebrating culture for all. It teaches traditional Irish music and culture to pupils of any age or ability, and it also stages an acclaimed writers’ workshop, painting classes, concerts, exhibitions, and poetry readings.
With its magnificent waves, Keel Strand is one of Ireland's leading surfing destinations. It is ideal for beginners and easily accessible. Surf boards and surfing lessons are available locally from the Blackfield Surf School and Achill Outdoor Education Centre.
With a wealth of historical remnants, marine biology and other features to explore underwater, Achill is a perfect spot for SCUBA diving. The Achill Dive Centre delivers PADI recognized courses for all levels of experience and arranges trips to the best dive sites, including Moyteoge Head in Keem Bay and Innisgalloon.
The Achill Yawl Festival (Cruinniú Bádóirí Acla) runs from July to September every year, with yawl sailing boats racing at various locations along Achill Sound, which runs from Clew Bay to Blacksod Bay. The Achill Yawl is a traditional wooden sailing vessel with a solid hull and a single mast, and the festival offers the perfect opportunity to see these beautiful boats in action.
3.8km from Achill Island
Each of these exquisite self-catering properties on the shores of Achill Island in County Mayo contains three cosy bedrooms and is comfortably heated with electric central heating. Excellently designed, each self-catering house has a stunning, fully equipped kitchen and dining area, comfortable furnishings throughout, and beautiful natural stone and pine floors. Enjoy breathtaking sea views in the comfort of tranquil surroundings.
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4.3km from Achill Island
This beautiful 4-star development is located in the scenic coastal town of Keel on Achill Island, County Mayo. Each of the 14 well-appointed, four-bedroom holiday homes features a fully-equipped kitchen with every modern home comfort and an inviting dining area. Enjoy the warmth of the open fire in the living room, as you gaze out at your picture-perfect surroundings. The holiday homes are ideal for families, with cots, highchairs, and babysitting all available on request.
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3.1km from Achill Island
These stunning 4-star holiday homes are located on beautiful Achill Island, County Mayo. Each has three lovely bedrooms, which are comfortably heated with electric central heating. Bed linen and towels are supplied free. A stylish, fully equipped kitchen and elegant dining area await you. While on holidays, you can enjoy the pleasures of a traditional open fireplace. From these fantastic holiday homes you can admire the wild and wonderful beauty of the Minaun Cliffs, a perfect backdrop for those treasured family photos.
3.9km from Achill Island
With a magnificent setting at the foot of Slievemore Mountain on Achill Island, County Mayo, these three-star holiday cottages are perfect for those who prefer the independence of rental accommodation on holiday. Each cottage has two bedrooms and can sleep up to 5 people.
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Prepare to fall in love with this beautiful property on the stunning Achill Island, off the coast of County Mayo. This traditional stone-built cottage is an exhilarating assault on your senses. Enjoy the therapeutic effect of breathtaking views of the clear blue Atlantic Ocean. This magnificent holiday home consists of three very cosy bedrooms. The bunk beds are only suitable for children. The property is comfortably heated with electric central heating.
9.1km from Achill Island
Allow yourself to relax in the comfort of this stunning holiday home on enchanting Achill Island in County Mayo. The cottage has four cosy bedrooms and is heated with electric central heating. Bed linen and towels are supplied free. The holiday home has a stunning kitchen and dining area, which is fully equipped to the highest standard. It also has a welcoming open fireplace. The holiday home boasts breathtaking panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean, giving it a dramatic setting.
With a stunning location on Achill Island, County Mayo, these holiday cottages provide top-class, 4-star accommodation. Each cottage has three bedrooms and can sleep up to six people. There is a double bedroom with ensuite facilities downstairs and two twin bedrooms upstairs. The combined kitchen/living area is equipped with all modern conveniences. These holiday homes are ideally located for exploring the wonderful scenery of Achill Island.
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