Achill Island

Set foot on Ireland's largest island and drive the 40km Atlantic Drive, taking in some of the finest scenery in Ireland as you go.

Spend time getting to know Ireland’s largest coastal island, Achill Island, located just off the mainland at Mayo.  Famed for its many Blue Flag beaches, miles of golden, sandy beaches await you at Achill Island.  Keem Beach and Trawmore Strand on the west of the island are perhaps the most famous of Achill’s Blue Flag beaches.

Away from Achill’s golden shores, the island is steeped in history, with The Desserted Village at Slievemore one of its most famous sites.  The village was home to many Achill families in the 1800s, until the Great Famine struck in 1845 and led to everyone leaving the village to move closer to the coast at Dooagh, or in many cases, further afield as emigration took its toll on these shores.  The 15th Century Grace O’Malley’s Castle is another popular historical landmark on Achill Island, and if you want to really experience everything Achill has to throw at you, drive (or cycle) the Atlantic Drive, a 40km drive around the island.

Watersports like kayaking, scuba diving and kite-surfing are popular among Achill’s shores, while horse riding, hillwalking, cycling, angling and whale watching are just some of the activities to enjoy as you take time getting to know Achill Island.

Images via Fáilte Ireland

© Fáilte Ireland