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Skellig Michael

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(Undo revision 1407557 by 90.206.202.155 (Talk))
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Due to the winter weather boats sail out in the summer season roughly (April-September)
 
Due to the winter weather boats sail out in the summer season roughly (April-September)
  
'''GETTING THERE'''
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===Get in===
  
[[Image:023 22A.JPG|th'''boat''' umb|250px|Skellig Michael]]
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[[Image:023 22A.JPG|thumb|250px|Skellig Michael]]
  
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You will have to get a boat out to the island, but visitor numbers are limited so only a few operators run out there. Follow the orignal monks trail from Ballinskelligs Pier highly recommended. The only covered boat going to Skellig rock  M.V.Flying Horse.H ere is a list of the main Boat operators.
  
You will have to get a boat out to the island,
 
but visitor numbers are limited so only a few operators run out there.
 
'''Here is a list of the main Boat operators.'''
 
  
'''Follow the orignal monks trail from Ballinskelligs Pier
+
*'''Feehan's Boats''' 00353 864176612,  Trips to the Skelligs depart daily from Ballinskelligs pier'''.
highly recommended'''
+
Departure times between 10am and noon depending on tides. The journey time is approximately 45 minutes each way and you'll have a further 2 hours onthe island Please telephone for reservations,departure times and sea conditions.
 
 
The only covered boat going to Skellig rock  M.V.Flying Horse
 
 
 
 
 
'''Feehan's Boats 00353 864176612'''
 
 
 
'''Trips to the Skelligs depart daily from Ballinskelligs pier'''.
 
Departure times between 10am and noon depending on tides.
 
The journey time is approximately 45 minutes each way and you'll  
 
have a further 2 hours onthe island
 
 
 
'''Please telephone for reservations,departure times and sea conditions 00353 864176612'''
 
 
 
 
 
Other departure points 
 
  
 
* <do name="Casey's Skelligs Boat Tours" alt="" address="Portmagee" directions="" phone="066-9472437" email="[email protected]" fax="" url="http://www.skelligislands.com" hours="" price="">The tour is on board a fast boat taking approx 45 minutes to do the 8 mile journey to the Islands</do>
 
* <do name="Casey's Skelligs Boat Tours" alt="" address="Portmagee" directions="" phone="066-9472437" email="[email protected]" fax="" url="http://www.skelligislands.com" hours="" price="">The tour is on board a fast boat taking approx 45 minutes to do the 8 mile journey to the Islands</do>

Revision as of 10:09, 13 March 2010

Skellig Michael Monastery with Small Skellig and Co. Kerry in background

Skellig Michael is in Ireland off the coast County Kerry.

It is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Understand

Skellig Michael is home to a 6th Century monastic settlement. This complex is perched on the steep sides of the larger of the two Skellig Islands, some 12 km off the coast of south-west Ireland. It illustrates the very spartan existence of the first Irish Christians. Since the extreme remoteness of Skellig Michael has until recently discouraged visitors, the site is exceptionally well preserved.

History

The monastery on Skellig Michael survived a number of Viking raids in the 9th century, notably in 823, was later significantly expanded, with a new chapel built around the start of the second millennium. The community at Skellig Michael was apparently never large - probably about 12 monks and an abbot. Some time in the 12th century the monks abandoned the Skellig and moved to the Augustinian Monastery at Ballinskelligs on the mainland.

Starting in the 1500s, Skellig Michael became a popular destination for annual pilgrimages, but had no permanent residents. In the 19th century two lighthouses were built and the Great Skellig was again inhabited, this time by a changing rota of lighthouse keepers. The second lighthouse still operates, though it was largely rebuilt during the 1960s and has been automated since the 1980s. In 1986 some restoration work was done and an official tourist bureau associated with the island was established. However restrictions have recently been imposed on tourist access, in the belief that tourist numbers (in particular use of the ancient stone steps up the rock) were causing a worrying degree of damage to the site. Alternative methods that would preserve the site while allowing public access are being considered. In 1996 it was made into a World Heritage Site

Landscape

There are two Skellig Islands off the Coast of Co. Kerry. Along with its smaller neighbour, Little Skellig, Great Skellig is an important nature reserve. Between them the Skelligs hold nationally important populations of a number of seabirds, including gannet, fulmar, kittiwake, razorbill, common guillemot, and Atlantic puffin. Storm petrels and Manx shearwaters also nest in large numbers.

Flora and fauna

Keep an eye out on Skellig Michael, for the Puffins that inhabit the island and get quite close.

Climate

Due to the winter weather boats sail out in the summer season roughly (April-September)

Get in

Skellig Michael

You will have to get a boat out to the island, but visitor numbers are limited so only a few operators run out there. Follow the orignal monks trail from Ballinskelligs Pier highly recommended. The only covered boat going to Skellig rock M.V.Flying Horse.H ere is a list of the main Boat operators.


  • Feehan's Boats 00353 864176612, Trips to the Skelligs depart daily from Ballinskelligs pier.

Departure times between 10am and noon depending on tides. The journey time is approximately 45 minutes each way and you'll have a further 2 hours onthe island Please telephone for reservations,departure times and sea conditions.

  • Casey's Skelligs Boat Tours, Portmagee, 066-9472437 (), [1]. The tour is on board a fast boat taking approx 45 minutes to do the 8 mile journey to the Islands
  • Lavelles Passenger Boat Services, Valentia Island, 066-9476124 (), [2]. Mr Lavelle is a local historian of the islands and provides very informative trips to the island
  • Skellig Boat Trips with Eoin Walsh, Valentia Island, 066-9476327 or 087-2833522 (), [3].
  • Boat Operator, Valentia Island, 066-9476142.

Boats normally leave at around 10-10:30AM. The boat trip out last about 45 minutes most tours give you 2-3 hours on the island. The return journey is again 45 minutes returning to harbour at around 3-4PM.

The closest town that is fully accessible by public transport is Caherciveen,

Fees/Permits

Boat trips are pretty much a standard rate of €40 in the off-peak season and €50 in the summer months.

There are no Banking Facilities in Ballinskelligs or portmagee so you will need the money before you arrive.

Get around

Map of Skellig Michael

There are no vehicles on the Island.

From the landing bay there is a small road that runs to the start of the stairs that lead up to the monastery. The Stairs are in a reasonable condition, however they are old and there are no safety ropes, whilst not being actively dangerous they do require some care, a dose of courage and some decent shoes.

The South Steps are the main route to the summit. They run up from the Heliport to ‘Christ’s Saddle’ a relatively flat piece of land between the two peaks of the Island. The monastery is on the Eastern peak and is an easy walk from ‘Christ’s Saddle’. The Hermitage is located on the South Peak, It is highly inadvisable to attempt to cross to the South Peak, the paths are not stable and the Hermitage itself is only accessible with climbing equipment.

See

  • The Monastery Ruins at the peak of the Island are one of the highlights of any trip to Ireland.
  • The spectacular view of the South Peak from Christ's Saddle.
  • The huge amount of sea birds, especially on Small Skellig
  • Seals and if you are lucky Dolphins in the waters on the way to the islands
  • Relax with a pint in the Harbour side pubs to help take in the great experience

Do

Visit The Skellig Experience [12] on Valentia Island, directly opposite Portmagee, to get a good overview of the history of the monastery.

Buy

Shops at the ports sell many traditional Irish souvenirs.

Skellig Chocolates [13] are a local company that make high quality and thoroughly recommended chocolates.

Eat

There are no catering facilities on the Island.

Bringing a picnic is a good idea however it is requested that this be eaten away from the remains of the monastery, to help stop seabirds scavenging among the ruins. The base of the steps near the Heliport is perhaps the best place to have a picnic, as it is well sheltered.

Drink

There are pubs in Ballinskelligs & Portmagee, which are the ideal place to have a drink once you return. The Bridge Bar and Fisherman’s Bar both lookout over the harbour, both serve food.

Sleep

It is not possible to stay on Skellig Michael, Accommodation is available at the Harbours.

Portmagee

  • Portmagee Hostel, Portmagee, Ring of Kerry, County Kerry, Ireland, +353 (0)66 948 0018 (), [8]. Good value accommodation in Portmaggee near the main harbour for trips to the islands Dorm €11-€14.50, Private Room from €13.50-€24 pp.
  • The Moorings, Portmagee, Co. Kerry, 353 66 9477108 (), [9]. Run by the same people that own the Bridge Bar and comes with a good recommendation €40-€65 p.p.p.n..

BallinskelligsWorld Famous Irish Hospitality Music, Food, Pubs Ceoil & Craic – Uniquely Local Ballinskelligs, Ring of Kerry, Ireland Ph: +353 (0) 66 947 9942 +353 (0) 66 947 9942 Mobile: +353 (0) 86 397 7834 +353 (0) 86 397 7834 Email: [email protected] Web: www.skellighostel.com

  • Skellig Hostel, Ballinskelligs, Co. Kerry, 00353 (), [10]. Excellent value accommodation in brand new building, The drive over the headland to Portmagee offers astounding views of the coastline Vallentia Island and out to the Skelligs themselves, worth driving out for the view alone. Dorm €11-€14.50, Private Room from €13.50-€24 pp.
  • The Old Cable House Bed and Breakfast, Old Telegraph Cable Station Waterville Ring of Kerry (Skellig Ring Drive to Waterville), 0035369474233, [11]. checkin: 3PM-6PM; checkout: 11AM. Ring of Kerry Ireland the Old Cable Historic House Stay at our B&B for the unique lodging alternative to large hotels, experience the personal touch “ That incomparable Irish mist , we reveal the Ireland you had only dreamed of colourful, unstuffy, and infectiously attractive mix of styles and people. Polished floors, robust Irish cooking, medicinal whiskeys, fly-fishing and storytelling characters, Islands, mountains, and goats who own the road, boat trips and magical wishing wells, just do absolutely nothing , breathe in the impossible beauty” * Milestone Heritage Site. This unique residence in Waterville Village traces its origins to the first transatlantic telegraph cable layed from Ireland/Europe to USA in 1866. Retaining all its original features, the Old Cable House offers bright spacious rooms of character. 35 euro pp.

Stay safe

Don’t forget that this is a ‘wilderness outing’ to an uninhabited Atlantic Ocean island where there are no modern facilities. Bring food, water, and sensible clothes. The boat crossing can be choppy and there are no safety rails on the climb at Skellig Michael so tread carefully and responsibly.

Get out

This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!


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