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Recommendations for Westport/Achill trip in August

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Boston
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Recommendations for Westport/Achill trip in August

Planning a solo, 4-day, first-time, trip to Westport/Achill Island for some outdoor adventures (climbing Croagh Patrick, cycling the Greenway, driving the loops on Achill Island, maybe ferry to Clare Island) and am wondering the best place to base myself and any accommodation recommendations? Any suggestions on can't-miss sights a little off the beaten track and your favorite places for good, cheap food? I'm also wondering how busy the Greenway is in August -- it would be no fun if it is chock-a-block with tourists (even though I'm one too! LOL!) I'm llooking for a good guidebook to the area as well. Many thanks!

Cork, Ireland
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1. Re: Recommendations for Westport/Achill trip in August

Will you have a car? If not, then Westport is your best bet as a base. It's a lovely friendly town with all amenities.

If you will have a car, then you have numerous B&B options outside of Westport. Look at a map (or google earth it) and decide where you would really like to stay.

I climbed Croagh Patrick last week. It was fabulous - and a very tough trek underfoot. It's best you climb Croagh Patrick on a clear blue skied day, doing it on a cloudy day is a waste of time as you will miss the stunning views of Clew bay from the top. The nice thing about this activity is that you can do it on any of your days in Mayo. You need not worry about being alone on C.Patrick. There is a constant stream of trekkers on C.Patrick during the day time.

For cycling the Greenway: It was empty last week !! We cycled from Achill to Westport and I believe we met about 15 other cyclist during the 6 hour trek. We met about 10 walkers. It will be busier in August, but that will be weather dependent. If weather is good expect it to be busy. Don't let this put you off. It is a really wonderful activity and a must do when in Mayo. Be aware that some of the Greenway uses the main roads along the route. If you are a confident cyclist already, this will not concern you. Newport was a lovely town to stop off on the trip for food. A large pub called the Grainne Uaile there is excellent.

We rented bikes and took the shuttle service from Clew Bay cycle hire which has it's main shop in Westport but also satellite shops in Mulranny and Achill. They bussed us and our bikes from Westport to Mulranny and we cycled up to Achill and then back to Westport.. Cost for that was €25, which may seem expensive but I considered it very good value for the experience that it delivers.

I cannot help you with accommodation in Westport as we stayed in Aughagower which is about 5 miles from there, but it was perfect for our group. By the way Aughagower, is worth a little side trip if you have a car. It has strong connections with St Patrick and has a very interesting Round Tower ruin right in the village centre. It even has a well where St Patrick alledgedly babtised his flock. (Well, that's what the sign says!)

Worth calling into Scotts when there. This is the local shop with a pub behind the counter !!! It harks back to a way of life during the 50's. Staff there are very friendly and it is wonderful to see that some shop/pub combos are still in existence in this era of the supermarket and super pub.

Enjoy your planning.

Western Ireland...
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2. Re: Recommendations for Westport/Achill trip in August

Will keep an eye out for you on the Western Greenway in August; we have an optimistic plan to cycle from Westport to Achill Island, stay two nights to explore the island and, if saddle soreness doesn't rule it out, cycle back to our start point. If you spot a motley crew of grim faced cyclists, age range 12 to 58, wobbling along the cycle path, do give us a wave!

Cannot foresee anything like traffic congestion based on our previous expeditions; we cycled a section last year on what must now be regarded rertrospectively as the only true summer's day - August 9th - with a certain level of bike traffic but nothing obtrusive.

A few places on the Newport to Mulranny stretch that you might investigate by bike or car:

Burrishoole Abbey - for a bit of peace and tranquility

Area around Furnace - a nice loop walk with great views of Clare Island and Clew Bay.

Nevin's Pub - a small diversion off the Greenway, on the Newport/Mulranny road, serves food.

The Grainne Uaile pub in Newport - nice friendly spot to stop for a bite to eat when passing through the town.

For something a bit different, Mary Gavin Hughes is unique in being the only female boat skipper in the area who offers charter angling trips on Clew Bay; originally from one of the islands in the bay, she is a great character and will tolerate all forms of angling incompetetence on board her vessel www.clewbayangling.com

Achill Island...
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3. Re: Recommendations for Westport/Achill trip in August

Hi there,

if you're up for outdoor adventures, Achill is the place! You can try surfing, kayaking, kite surfing, paddleboarding, coastaleering, hiking, fishing... Use Achill Tourism website to get more details on these.

As a local, my top food recommendation is Pure Magic in Dugort. It's a great pizzeria with a laid-back surfer vibe - in fact the guys who run it also give kitesurfing and paddleboarding lessons. We eat here a lot, with our kids or with groups of friends. The pizza is superb, about €10 for a huge pizza, and there's always a couple of other dishes on the menu too. You can bring your own drink for a €3.50 charge, great value considering the price of beer/wine in most restaurants. They also have hostel-type accomodation.

One more recommendation is, for kayaking or surfing, get in touch with Tomás McLoughlin through AchillTourism .

Hope u make it to Achill, u'll love it!

4. Re: Recommendations for Westport/Achill trip in August

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