Enjoy a Spring Break in Style and go Glamping in the Aran Islands

Enjoy a Spring Break in Style and go Glamping in the Aran Islands

The first sight of spring flowers brings the hope of warmer days ahead, and acts as that first invitation to enjoy the great outdoors. Discover the spectacular scenery of the Aran Islands without sacrificing any of the luxury, and go glamping with the family in the Aran Islands for your spring break.

Glamping enables you to experience all the fun of camping with none of the hardship. It’s the perfect way to spend your spring break in the Aran Islands. The unique ‘Clochans’ provide a comfortable base from which to enjoy the main attractions.

Things to do during your Aran Islands Spring Break
Whether you are staying for a night or a week, there are plenty of things for the whole family to see and do during your spring break in the Aran Islands.

St Patrick’s Day Parade
The St. Patrick’s Day Parade is not to be missed if you plan your spring break in the Aran Islands over March 17th. Pin on a Shamrock, and check out the parade as it makes its way across the island of Inis Mor. You can even follow along on a bicycle!

 

Discover the charm of the Aran Islands by Bicycle
Cycling is a very popular way to explore Inis Mor, the largest of the Aran Islands. You can cycle along at your own pace, keep to your own timetable, and venture off down quiet country tracks. All the main attractions of Inis Mor can be reached by bicycle, and so you can even put together your own self-guided sightseeing tour.

Bicycles are available to hire on the Aran islands at Aran Bike Hire. They have a full range of bikes, including bicycles for the kids, electric bikes, tandems, and trailer bikes. They also deliver bicycles to the Camping and Glamping site, and provide a free map to show you how to get to the main points of interest.

 

Explore the prehistoric fort of Dun Aengus
Dun Aengus is perhaps the most famous attraction on the Aran Islands. This semi-circular stone fort is thought to date back to at least 1000 BC, and not only is it impressive in itself, but also offers some incredible views. Visiting here during your spring break on the Aran Islands means that you will avoid the crowds that build up during the summer. If you have chosen to cycle to the fort, there is bicycle parking outside, and some people decide to stay around for the sunset.

The Worm Hole
Another attraction that you can visit is the Worm Hole. You can either walk here by heading east along the cliffs from Dun Aengus, or include it on your cycling route. It’s a curious natural feature, where a rectangular shaped pool has formed at the bottom of the cliffs. It has been made popular in recent years by the Red Bull Cliff Diving Championship, although it is very unlikely you will see anyone crazy enough to dive in there during your spring break in the Aran Islands! The rugged scenery along this stretch of coastline is stunning, and so it is a place well worth visiting.

Go Seal Spotting
Even in spring, you can spot the seals that call Inis Mor home. Head on over to the north side of the island to the most established seal colony, and you will find a lookout point on the road past Kilronan. How many seals you may be able to see will depend on the tide, but there are usually 10-20 there unless they are hunting for fish in the sea.

tedfest-aranislands

Kilronan Village
Kilronan is where the ferry services arrive from the mainland, and is a lively little village. It’s interesting to spend some time at the harbour looking at the fishing boats, as well as the traditional Currach boats. If you are starting to feel the chill during your spring break on the Aran islands, you might want to buy a genuine Aran sweater from the Aran Sweater market in the village. There is no better place to buy one, after all!. There are a couple of pubs and places to eat in the village, with one being Joe Watty’s Bar. This pub holds events and live music all through the year. It is also involved with the Tedfest – a festival based around the ever popular Father Ted comedy, normally held in February! It is a great place to meet the locals, enjoy good food, and sample a cold Guinness or two. The village has all the amenities you may need during your stay, such as an ATM machine. It is also a place to stock up on groceries if you want to self-cater when staying at the camping and glamping site.

The beaches
Admittedly, a spring break is perhaps not the ideal time to be hitting the beaches in terms of catching some rays, but it is interesting to visit at this time of the year nonetheless. The coastline always seems at its most alive during this time of year, and taking a walk along the beaches certainly fills the lungs with fresh air! Notable beaches to head for, especially on a bright day, are Cill Mhuirbhigh on Inis Mor, An Trá Mórwhich on Inis Oírr, and the sandy coves over on Inis Meáin..

And everything else….
It seems that everywhere you go in the Aran Islands, there is something of unique or historic interest. Whether it is a Celtic hillfort, an old church, or simply the views of stone walls across fields, it is a great place to get away from the crowds of city life, relax and unwind. The ideal spring break destination in ireland!

Aran Islands Camping and Glamping is a new and innovative campsite, combining all the facilities you need to make yourselves at home. You can either set up your own tent, or use one of our comfortable and stylish ‘Clochan’ glamping units. If you are planning a spring break in the Aran Islands, contact us today in order to make a reservation.

5+ Things We Irish Won’t Do On St. Patrick’s Day

5+ Things We Irish Won’t Do On St. Patrick’s Day

There are a lot of preconceived notions about the Irish and they all seem to reappear around this time of year.  Here’s a short list nonsensical activities not commonly embraced in Ireland, followed by a few practices we enjoy on St. Patrick’s and other days.

 

We don’t

 
1. Call it St. Patty’s Day
Our national holiday is referred to as Saint Patrick’s Day or, colloquially, “Paddy’s Day”.  “Patty” to us Irish is a diminutive of “Patricia” or something like a raw beef burger.
 
 2. Say “Top of the Morning to You”
The only Irish person to say this would be an actor and then only for a fat fee.
 
3. Eat Corned Beef & Cabbage
Since bacon and cabbage is a much-loved dinner, eaten once a week at least, and corned beef is now a rare delicacy usually enjoyed mid-winter, our St. Patrick’s Day meal would be more like a Sunday Roast, say beef or lamb, with all the trimmings.
 
4. Climb the Reek
Croagh Patrick is “the holy mountain” near Westport in County Mayo (on the Wild Atlantic Way); on the last Sunday in July, pilgrims ascend to attend Mass, pray or just enjoy the view. This practice is locally called “climbing the Reek”.  In late August, devout pilgrims spend three days fasting and praying on an island known as St. Patrick’s Purgatory in Lough Derg in County Donegal.
 
5. Drink Green Beer
We’re too fond of our beers to adulterate them – Ireland has lots of craft breweries as well as the world famous Guinness.  Apart from a slice of lime in Irish gin, the only verdantly-hued beverage consumed regularly by the Irish is a green smoothie. Potato & Leek soup is a favourite dish but soup is eaten, not drunk.
 
Speaking of “drunk”, we don’t get blotto, blind or belligerently drunk either on St. Patrick’s Day.  That myth arose from times past when the Lenten fast and abstinence could be suspended by Catholics on the patron saint’s Holy Day, which always occurs during Lent: a drop of whiskey or a pint of porter had much more potency after a period of abstinence – especially on an empty stomach.
 

Some things we do around St. Patrick’s Day are

 
 1. Connect
The national holiday is a great day for families.  Children are encouraged to celebrate our culture and the parades nationwide are very popular with young and old.
 
 2. Celebrate together
A family meal for all ages, preceded or followed by song and dance (in homes or public venues), is always relished in Ireland and St. Patrick’s Day is perfectly timed, bringing colour and joy in the middle of Spring and heralding the coming of the Easter break.
 
3. Get out and about
Whether it’s into town for the parade or off to the wilds, we like to be out in the open air on St. Patrick’s Day.  When the holiday falls on a Friday or Monday, we can make a long weekend of it and head off to the rolling hills or the seashore.  Green fields, blue-green bays, good companions – let’s go glamping way out West!
 
 
 
Scenes from the St Patrick’s Day Parade 2016