Difference between revisions of "Arranmore Island"
Revision as of 00:56, 21 January 2007
Arranmore Island is an island in The Rosses, County Donegal.It is the largest inhabited island in County Donegal, and the second largest in all of Ireland, with a population of 528 in 2006, down from 543 in 2002, and over 600 in 1996.
The island lies 3 miles off Burtonport and a ferry, that accommodates up to 128 foot passengers and all sizes of vehicles, runs daily all year. The trip to the island affords spectacular views and takes between 25-30 minutes passing a number of small islands before crossing a stretch of open Atlantic water. The proximity of Carrickfin International Airport (15 minutes by car to Burtonport pier) and there is accessibility provided by private coaches from Galway/Dublin/Belfast.
Driving in Arannmore, while possible, is not recommended. The quality of road surfacing is very poor in many areas, and many vehicles are uninsured or driven by unlicensed drivers. Walking is usually sufficient for travel to any destination on the island, and if neccessary, there is a local taxi service and occasional community bus available, details of which can be obtained locally.
Árainn Mhór boasts excellent lake and sea angling. There are two freshwater lakes which contain Brown trout and one, Loch Shore, is the only lake in Europe where Rainbow trout breed naturally. The rich waters around the island provide numerous Cod, Ling, Conger eel, Pollock, Wrasse, Skate, Turbot and Plaice. Boats for sea angling can be arranged locally by phoning Mickey "Eddie" Gallagher 00353(0)749520522 & Neily Boyle 00353(0)749520745.
There are many small, secluded beaches on the island as well as the main beaches at Aphort & Leabgarrow. The crystal clear waters, shipwrecks, drift dives and varied marine life provide excellent snorkeling and Scuba diving. There are dedicated visitor moorings for yachts and cruisers on the island
Excellent views of the mainland from Glen Head to Tory Island are to be found while walking the islands 7 square miles. There is also a walking trail marked as "Arranmore Way" (Slí Arainn Mhóir).
The island has a hotel and restaurant near the ferry landing, and Phil Bán's shop nearby stocks groceries for the self-catering hostel. There is also sometimes a portable 'chip-van' outside popular venues, most often at weekends and holidays, and more often during the summer months.
The public house "Early's", also near the ferry, serves pizza made on the premises on request.
With no less than seven pubs, Arranmore is a pub crawler's dream. Given that there is no permanent Garda Siochana presence on the island, the pubs are usually lax in adhering to closing times, if at all.
During busy tourist seasons, Smuggler's Bar (Jon's) opens as a nightclub-type venue, providing a small but atmospheric dance area for locals and visitors alike.