Day 8: Aran Islands

Tá sé am a rá godobye “It’s Time to Say Goodbye” – Last Day in Ireland at the Aran Islands

Even through I have been back for a month, I have been delaying posting my final day as that would mean the vacation would officially be over.  We had the most amazing weather on our final day and our trip to the Aran Islands.  It was actually the HOTTEST DAY OF THE YEAR in IRELAND!

The day started early with a 45 min bus ride from Galway to the Ferry dock – then another 45 min ferry ride to the Aran Islands

The Aran Islands, in County Galway, Ireland, are an archipelago of three small islands, the largest of which – Inis Mór – is only 12km by 3km in size. All are barren, rocky islands with some of the most beautiful scenery in the world.

Trying to capture the amazing green color of the water.  Also trying to get a picture of one of the hundreds (probably thousands) of jelly fish that we saw on the way over

Once on the largest island of  Inis Mór we boarded another tour bus that would bring us around the island.  Failed Lighthouse…it was built too far inland

There are several seals that call the shores of Inis Mór their home. The best place to catch a glimpse of these creatures is on the north side of the island.The well established seal colony on Inis Mór is a huge tourist attraction for adults and children alike. These beautiful creatures, grey in colour, are calm and quiet. If you make your way past Kilronon down towards the beach of Portmurvy, you are likely to see them sunning themselves on the rocks. Depending on the tide you may see an average of 15-20 seals, which is a truly beautiful sight. At high tide they hunt for fish such as Pollock and Salmon. These are big creatures, weighing up to 507 lbs!A lot of tourists visit the seals via bike or bus tour, this is the perfect spot for a picnic! A highly recommended activity.

Old seaweed factory

Dún Aonghasa (anglicized Dun Aengus)  is the most famous of several prehistoric forts on the Aran Islands of County Galway, Ireland. It lies on Inishmore, at the edge of a 100 metre high cliff. A popular tourist attraction, Dún Aonghasa is an important archaeological site that also offers a spectacular view. It is not known when Dún Aonghasa was built, though it is now thought to date from the Iron Age.  T. F. O’Rahilly surmised that it was built in the 2nd century BC by the Builg following the Laginian conquest of Connacht. Today we know that the first construction goes back to 1100 BC, when the first enclosure was erected by piling rubble against large upright stones. Around 500 BC, the triple wall defences were probably built along the western side of fort. Dún Aonghusa 2, looking down.JPG The 19th-century artist George Petrie called Dún Aonghasa “the most magnificent barbaric monument in Europe.”  Its name, meaning “Fort of Aonghas”, refers to the pre-Christian god of the same name described in Irish mythology, or the mythical king, Aonghus mac Úmhór.

LOVE Garden

Dinner at Nimmo’s:  One of Galway’s most enduring restaurants, housed in one of the city’s most iconic restaurant spaces, Ard Bia has always placed as much emphasis on community experiences and aesthetic stimulation as on serving great food in a fun environment. We believe in having roots in a place whilst having an identity that transcends location and takes inspiration from around the world.

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