The Aran Islands (from the Irish, Oileáin Árann), widely celebrated by artists and pilgrims alike, consist of three lush, Irish-speaking islands:Inishmore, Inishmann and Inisheer. Located just a touch off Galway Bay, together they reprise the kartz limestone landscape of the Burren in County Clare.
A tempered, year-round climate allows for a flurry of rare and exotic plants that gather and sprout from grikes (the gaps in the limestone pavement). Allied to a unique gathering of animals including a flutter of sweet, bumbling butterflies, proud, colourful moths and the waspish hoverfly (worry not – it doesn’t sting), the islands are a precious resource in addition to being a great walking destination. Splendid Iron Age ruins cross these islands, and the mythical Dún Aonghasa fort, delicately perched at the edge of a cliff on Inishmore, has received lavish praise. The smallest church in the world (at 3.2 m by 2.1 m), the sainted Teampull Bheanáin, is also located on Inishmore.
Unmissable Attractions The Aran Islands
1. Dún Dúchathair (black stone ringfort)
3. Teampall an Cheathrair Álainn (holy well)
4. Dún Aonghasa (The Fort of Aonghasa)
8. Na Seacht Teampaill (The Seven Churches) 9. Inishere Lighthouse
10. Dun Eoghanachta
11. Dun Eochla
12. Ionad Arann (Heritage Centre)
13. Dún Chonchúir (Conor’s Fort)