West coast Achill island

Exploring Mayo

We spent three days in Westport in County Mayo in the west of Ireland. Westport is a lively town with a great atmosphere and lots of things to do.

Croagh Patrick

On the first day, we climbed Croagh Patrick mountain, which is located about 10 kilometres outside of Westport. There are great views from the top of Clew Bay. The weather can turn as we found out, heavy rain and gale force winds! so wear lots of layers, even in Summertime.


The second day, in the morning, we drove out to Achill Island and drove around the island, taking in the beautiful views of the wild Atlantic coast.



In the afternoon we strolled around Westport, which is a heritage town. The town was built in the 1780’s in a Georgian architectural style, for the workers and tenants on the John Browne estate, the Marquis of Sligo. The town has lots of lovely old buildings and a riverside Mall walk.



Mayo Greenway

On the third day, we hired bikes and cycled from Westport to Newport and back again on the Mayo Great Western Greenway cycle route, which was 22 kilometres in total.  From Newport, you can cycle onto Mulranny which is another 18 kilometres and from there to Achill Island which is another 13 kilometres. The Greenway is 42 kilometres one way to Achill Island. There are several bike rental shops located in Westport, which offer handy shuttle services, they will drop you out to Achill Island, Mulranny or Newport. Then you can cycle back or you can depart from Westport and arrange to be collected from one of those locations.

We used regular bikes but if you haven’t cycled in many years, I recommend getting an electric bike, especially if you plan on cycling the full route, the route is mainly flat but there are some hills.

Dining out

We had dinner in JJ O’Malley’s bar & restaurant. For drinks, we went to the famous Matt Molloy’s pub, which is owned by one of the Chieftains band.  The pub has a trad session every night. We also had drinks in MacBride’s pub, MJ. Hoban’s bar and The Porterhouse bar, which also hosts trad sessions.


Click here to find out what to do and see in North Mayo.

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