In the western region of Ireland along the Atlantic Ocean coast beautifully sits the Aran. Its panoramic coastal landscape coupled with magnificent nature is irresistible. Epic beauty that draws tourists in droves.
The Aran Islands is the cynosure of Aran Tours. It’s a group of three rocky islands positioned at the mouth of Galway Bay, Co Galway. Not only are the islands scenic but also strewn with many attraction sites. A visit to Aran is for sure a lifetime experience.
Inishmore, Inishmaan and Inisheer are the three islands.
Inishmore (Inis Mor) is the largest island covering about 7,635 acres of land. It’s famed for monuments like Dun Aonghasa, Dun Aengus and the Seven Churches. Other interesting sites are: the Worm Hole and Kilmurvey Beach.
Of the three, Inishmaan (Inis Meain) is most unexplored. It presents the Irish traditional set up in is truest form. The natural ecosystem hosts makes it a perfect botanical paradise and a birds haven.
The smallest island is Inisheer (Inis Oirr). Situated near the Burren and the Cliffs of Moher, the fishing village serves jaw dropping views of the thrilling natural attractions.
The serenity of the islands is quite something. If you know some Irish history, the settings brings to mind the Celts and early christians lifestyle.
Is Aran worth my time? Absolutely. There are lots of places you could visit and uncountable fun things you can do. Let us have a look at them.
Experiencing Aran Islands to the full
i. Visit the Dun Aengus
This is a site like no other. It’s a spectacular Celtic fort that hangs on a cliff overlooking the Atlantic. The archeological site is said to be about two thousand years old.
To get to appreciate the history behind the semi-circular fort, there is a little museum. In the vicinity also is several prehistoric tombs.
Experience all this as you take a refreshing walk or cycle. There are so many beautiful sights you will enjoy on your way to this place.
Apart from tourists, scholars and archeologists also flock the site for their research.
ii. Stop over at The Seven Churches
A collection of ruins of ancient houses thought to have been constructed somewhere in the 7th or 8th century. The reason as to why it is called seven churches in unclear since of the buildings only two are churches.
St. Breacan’s Church is the largest and has beautiful stone work. The Church of Hollow is the second one. Its intactness has led to the speculation that it was added to the site later, as late as the 15th century.
Though not so eye catching, the monastic houses bear rich history of early Christianity in the region.
iii. View the Worm Hole
It’s an intriguing rectangular shaped pool cut out from the rock at the bottom of the cliff. The view of the Atlantic waters contrasted against the dark background of the rock presents a sight you can’t just turn away from.
The site is perfect for cliff diving. If cliff diving is your thing, you want to stop over here during your Aran tours.
iv. Marvel at Kilmurvey Beach
Talk of natural beauty at its best. The peaceful white sand beach is situated between Kilronan and Dun Aengus. In your Aran tours, this will the best place to break away and relax.
Actually there are many other interesting places you can visit during your Aran tours. The ones mentioned are the must visit. Unless you stop at these points, you won’t convince someone you were in Aran.
Apart from walking and biking, you could go for a hike or rock climbing. The terrain is ideal. You could also lazily hang out on the beaches as you sport fish. Not to forget the ferry rides in the Atlantic.
Perhaps you don’t feel like hustling our muscles so much. Well, there is something for you. Take the bus or mini bus tour. The friendly and experienced tour guides will make your Aran island tour memorable.
How to get to Aran
Galway is very accessible. If you take a bus or a train from Dublin it will take you roughly two and a half hours to get to Aran. Along the way you will be served within scenic views.
If you choose to take it faster, catch a flight. From Dublin Airport you could land at either Shannon International Airport or West International Airport in Knock. From either airport it will take about an hour drive to get to Galway.
The hospitality industry at Galway is above par. There are plenty of good eateries and hotels where you could spend. The series of three, four and five star hotels ensure your Aran tours experience is cozy and unforgeable.
If you desire to engage the Irish culture deeper, you can book a homestay. Apart from receiving Irish heritage from the horse’s mouth, you get the opportunity to eat traditional Irish foods provided by the host.
About The Author
Florin A. is known as a freelance copy writer and foodie whose work has been presented in websites, websites, publications, and TV advertisements.