Experience the wonder of exploring nature’s larder – enjoy a wild foraging workshop with Gaol Siar on the shores of Erris.Barbara Heneghan of Gaol Siar offers guided tours and heritage & cultural events in both English and Irish – bringing together the land, the sea and the spirit of Erris. Barbara can guide you around many of the historic places of Erris, including Blacksod, Inver, Ceathrú Thaidhg and Erris Head. Gaol Siar also provides a genealogy service and has connected dozens of people to their relations here, and to their ancestors’ place.
Beannchor Iorrais / Bangor Erris & Ballycroy National Park
The Bangor Trail
01/01/1970 - 01/01/1970
‘The Telegraph’ newspaper (UK) recently named The Bangor Trail as one of Europe’s top 24 walking routes. A challenging 30-mile hike, this trail brings you from Newport to Bangor Erris through the uninhabited mountain range of Neiphin Beg. The trail has a long history and may date back to the 16th century. It was the main route for people & livestock, and emigrants travelling from Bangor Erris to Westport would have used it. Said to be one of the loneliest places in Ireland, you will enjoy utter silence and isolation amongst the wild mountains. There is a hut on the trail that sleeps up to six people, providing decent shelter for campers. With no roads and no houses for miles around, The Bangor Trail is an exhilarating escape into the wilderness of the Erris region – voted the best place in Ireland to go wild!
Béal Átha Chomhraic / Bellacorick & An Seisceann / Sheskin
Sheskin Forest Trail
01/01/1970 - 01/01/1970
Sheskin Forest Trail (which forms part of the Western Way from Co. Galway), stretches from near Ballycastle south to Bellacorick. This forest is a large area of conifer, established on the boglands of north Mayo. This is a trail that will take you across some of the wildest and most remote forests in the west of Ireland, giving a feeling of wilderness and offering real solitude to the visitor.
The Cross Loop is a beautiful coastal trail starting at the old Cross Abbey ruins, along the beach front – perfect for couples enjoying a romantic getaway. The islands of Inis Gé and Inis Gluaire are visible from the shoreline and the beach extends for approximately 2.5km. This walk is best done at low tide so as to make use of the extensive strand. A black post marked with the trail arrows on your left points you through a marked pathway along the sand dunes and linking to Cross Lake, which is known for its swans and variety of wildlife. To complete the 5.7km walk, you stay on the west side of the lake and make your way back to Cross Abbey. For the longer 7.6km route, you walk in a loop around the lake.
In the 17th century, there was a man named Brian Rua Uí Chearbhain (Red Brian Carabine) from Inver and he is remembered as the Prophet of Erris. All of his predictions came true. Some of his prophecies – written in original Gaelic script - are inscribed in stones underfoot, forming a short walking trail around Belmullet town. It is hoped that an accompanying map and brochure will be available from local tourist offices soon.
Tóchar Daithí Bán starts at the visitor centre in Ballycroy National Park, which provides panoramic views to the sea, out towards Achill Island and Blacksod. The easy 1.8km trail is named after mythical giant called Daithí Bán who built a fortress on Ballycroy National Park’s tallest mountain, Corslieve. He would regularly walk down to the sea and use the three islands between Ballycroy and Doohooma Head as stepping stones. The route ends at the rear of the visitor centre, which has picnic tables on an outdoor patio area, and the entrance to the tearooms.
There are four Slí na Sláinte walking routes in Co. Mayo, including one in Belmullet and one in Ceathrú Thaidhg. Slí na Sláinte translates as 'path to health'. Developed by the Irish Heart Foundation. These are walking routes marked by bright colourful signposts, which are situated at 1km intervals.
The Children of Lir walk is one of the Ceathrú Thaidhg Loop Walks and is 10km long (following the blue arrows). This walk is named after the famous story ‘The Children of Lir’. Legend says that four children were turned into swans and condemned to wander the countryside for 900 years, with 300 of these being spent on the the island of Inis Gluaire, off the coast of Erris. Inishglora. The Dun Chaocháin area is one of great physical beauty and has retained many of its traditions and culture - the Irish language is still the vernacular. This part of the north Mayo coast is one of Ireland’s best kept secrets, with many of its majestic cliffs, rugged headlands, rocky coves and jagged stacks apparent only to those who leave the main thoroughfares to discover them. The Stags of Broadhaven can be viewed from this region, as well as the famous An Bhinn Bhuí (Benwee Head) – a Wild Atlantic Way discovery point.
The Black Ditch Loop walk is one of the many walks in the Ceathrú Thaidhg area and is 13km long (following the red arrows). The Dun Chaocháin area is one of great physical beauty and has retained many of its traditions and culture - the Irish language is still the vernacular. This part of the north Mayo coast is one of Ireland’s best kept secrets, with many of its majestic cliffs, rugged headlands, rocky coves and jagged stacks apparent only to those who leave the main thoroughfares to discover them. The Stags of Broadhaven can be viewed from this region, as well as the famous An Bhinn Bhuí (Benwee Head) – a Wild Atlantic Way discovery point.