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Inis Mor by Ann Treacy
May 15, 2008, 8:11 am
Filed under: Clare, Galway

On Wednesday, we went to the Aran Island – well we boated past the first two and landed at the largest – Inis Mor. We left from Doolin on a very turbulent boat ride. I felt like we were on Deadliest Catch. (I have become a faithful Deadliest Catch watcher here – partially because I don’t always love Irish TV.) The waves got half of the passengers soaked. I think we were all relived to reach the shore.

Once off the boat we found a bus tour of the island. Here’s a quick scoop on the Island. It’s off the west coast. It’s politically in County Galway. It’s a Gaeltacht area, which means people speak Irish. They speak English too – but they seem to speak Irish to each other. Patrick impressed us all by ordering his lunch in Irish.

The island is 9 miles long and 2 miles wide – but I suspect that’s 2 miles at the widest parts. There are about 300 houses and 760 people on the island.

Our tour started with Dun Aengus – “the most spectacular semi circular Celtic stone fort in Europe”. It was super cool. The fort is built on top of the cliff. It’s all built by stone. The road to the fort is built by stone and the big fort is too. It’s 3200 years old. It’s about a half a mile up to the fort – and an amazing view once you get there. It was interesting to think about how people ended up on the Island and what got them to pick such a scary place to build a fort. Well, clearly the scary feature also made it hard for enemies to sneak up on you – but it’s hard to imagine being more afraid of enemies than a huge drop off.

Then we got back on the bus. We drove around the island. We saw cows, a baby donkey, seals from really far away. We also saw people living their day to day life. It’s a far cry from Dublin and I was so glad that we got a chance to visit. The weather could not have been better. I’ve always wanted to visit the Aran Islands.

On the way off the island we visited some roosters that I had spied from the bus. I have to say – roosters are surprisingly beautiful. Their colors are vivid.

Then we got on the boat home and the sailing couldn’t have been smoother. It was like night and day – and a very pleasant surprise.

And the biggest bonus of all – we saw puffins from the boat. Grandpa spied them first. They were flying very close to the water. The others on the boat thought we were crazy making such a fuss about their puffins, but it was cool.

We had a nice dinner in Doolin at Gus O’Connor’s Pub. I don’t know if we were starving or if it was the best fish and chips in Ireland – but it was good. O’Connor’s is a big place to see traditional music – unfortunately we were there at 6:00 and the music starts at 9:00.

Then we had a very scary experience on the way back to Lahinch. We were driving around a very curvy part of the road and a motorcycle popped past us in the other direction. Then we saw a motorcycle pop past us behind him half in our lane. Then we saw a motorcycle not pass us. Thankfully, Dad had stopped the motorcyclist drive right in front of us into a hedge of brambles and nettles. The motorcycle flipped over and the driver flipped over the hedge. We thought he was done for. We were hopping out of the car when the driver climbed back onto the road. He was not a young guy. Thankfully, he was dressed from head to toe in leather – but we could not believe he walked away. He was so lucky that Dad stopped.

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[…] on the Aran Islands While you all were working yesterday, I was on a boat to Inishmor the largest of the Aran Islands. It is off the west coast of Ireland. The population is 760 people […]

Pingback by Broadband on the Aran Islands « Blandin on Broadband

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