Aran Island, beach, bike rental, biking, Cliffs of Moher, County Galway, cows, cycling, Dun Aengus, Europe, farms, ferry, Galway, Galway City, Inishmore, Ireland, Irish, jaunting cars, Kinvara, Seal Colony, Seven Churches, tourism, tourist, walls, Wormhole
The night was cold but no one bothered us. We woke up next to the lake and packed our tent up early. Getting in the car, we headed towards Galway City in County Galway, stopping at a gas station on the way. Our GPS “Jeffrey” found it amusing to lie to us several times while we were driving, but we still made it to Galway relatively early. We had breakfast at a restaurant before walking around the cold, quiet city a bit to find the tourism office. At the office, we got a pamphlet regarding ferries to the Aran Islands. We didn’t have any particular desire to see the city more than what we saw, so we took our car and headed to Ros a’ Mhíl from which Aran Island Ferries leave a few times a day. We got there just in time for a small sprinkle and to buy tickets round-trip for the day.
We walked a short distance down to the docks and joined loads of other people in boarding the double-decked ferry. I had thought the journey only takes 20 minutes, but maybe that is from Galway Bay. Our ferry took around an hour to arrive on Inishmore, the largest of the three islands. Onshore, we rented bikes by the dock and took off with the four or five hours we had to see the sites on the island. We started this Ring of Aran by biking along the south coast, passing the lighthouse and eventually reaching the beach. We then headed towards the Seven Churches to see the remains of two churches, some houses, and many tombstones. There was a cat and two dogs there as well as a busload of people who left as it started to rain. The rain was short, though, so continuing to the Dun Aengus (Angus Fort) wasn’t a challenge, but we were surprised that we had to pay for admission. Parking our bikes, we also had to hike up a hillside quite a ways before reaching the stone remains on the edge of a dramatically high cliff. Returning to our bikes, we visited the Wormhole farther down the southern coast, but it wasn’t anything astonishing with the tide. We returned to the beach and chose the northern shore back past the Seal Colony, dodging tour vans and jaunting cars on the way.
When we were finally back from our loop, we returned our bikes, grabbed some food (I had chips with curry and cheese), then we had some Guinness at a pub until the ferry came. We took the ferry back to our car and drove to Kinvara. We were able to find a place for the night in this quaint town, but so much was closed early for a Sunday and so we ended up ordering food and drinks for our room and sat up talking instead.
Art in Galway City.
Loading the ferry.
Biking on Inishmore.
Cliffs by the Fort.
Typical walls around the island.