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Things To Do

Croagh Patrick

Croagh Patrick, nicknamed the Reek, is a 764-metre (2,507ft) mountain and an important site of pilgrimage in County Mayo in Ireland. It is situated five miles from the beautiful town of Westport and the mountain’s conical shape soars majestically above the surrounding countryside above the villages of Murrisk and Lecanvey. It is the third highest mountain in County Mayo after Mweelrea and Nephin.

Croagh Patrick, which overlooks Clew Bay with its 365 islands, is considered the holiest mountain in Ireland. It is well known for its Patrician Pilgrimage in honour of St Patrick, Ireland’s patron saint. It was on the summit of the mountain that Saint Patrick fasted for forty days in 441 AD and the custom has been faithfully handed down from generation to generatio ever since through the Advent of Lent.

Each year on the last Sunday in July, thousands of devotees from all around the world visit the mountain for what is known as “Reek Sunday”, a day of worship in honour of Saint Patrick. Some people even climb the mountain barefoot as an act of penance. Outdoor Masses are also held throughout the day.

However, the sheer volume of visitors during the year and the consequential erosion has caused safety concerns to both the Catholic church and local farmers who undertake safety measures. The pilgrimage was actually cancelled in July 2015 due to bad weather on safety grounds.

The Yoga Root

An embodied health and fitness studio, that combines the ancient art yoga with a scientific twist. A great facility right on our doorstep, their state of the art yoga studio is spacious, warm and welcoming.

The Great Western Greenway

Escape the bustle of urban life on the multi-award-winning, off-road walking and cycling trail - the Great Western Greenway. This stunning trail travels from Westport to Achill. The first 14km stage of the Greenway from Newport to Mulranny opened in 2010 and a year later extensions were finished lengthening the route to 42km, almost entirely off-road.

The Greenway follows the path of the old Westport to Achill Midland Great Western Railway line which closed in 1937. Landowners along the route have given access to their land and allowed development of the path at no cost. This community spirit of the Greenway landowners has recently been recognised and rightly so.

The Greenway meanders through some of the most beautiful and idyllic countryside you’ll find anywhere in Ireland. Walkers and cyclists can drink in the views of the spectacular Nephin Beg mountain range, Clew Bay, Clare Island, Croagh Patrick and Achill. You could even stop off for a hike on one of the Derradda loop walks or take a break on Mulranny’s Blue Flag Beach.

If you’re a history buff you can visit fascinating gems like the seven-arch railway viaduct over the Black Oak river in Newport, or take a slight detour and visit Granuaile’s Rockfleet Castle and the 15th century Burrishoole Abbey.

The 42km almost entirely traffic-free route is ideal for getting out on a bike for a spin and is perfect for a day of family fun.

The Greenway has won several awards including European Destination of Excellence, an award for the community spirit of the Greenway landowners for allowing their land to be used and developed and a LAMA award.

Westport House & Gardens

Westport House, known as “Ireland’s Most Beautiful Home”, Westport House has a story that matches its beauty. One of the few still privately-owned historic houses left in Ireland, Westport House was built by the Browne family whose connections to Mayo date back to the 1500s and even relates them to the trail-blazing pirate queen and chieftain, Grace O’Malley. A visit to Westport House will tell the story of the development of the house as well as the family’s contribution to the estate, surrounding area, and further afield. We hope you’ll enjoy the tales of pirates and slave emancipators as you gain a fascinating insight into the families behind the big house as well as the members of downstairs staff who made it all possible.

Built in 1730, Westport House was designed by the famous architects Richard Cassels, James Wyatt, Benjamin Wyatt, and Thomas Ivory. It features thirty rooms open to the public over three floors –

  • the main floor with formal rooms such as the Drawing Room, Long Gallery, Dining Room or smaller Library and Morning Rooms
  • the basement which was the engine of the house featuring the kitchens and servants quarters - and you’ll still find the dungeons of Grace O’Malley’s original castle here
  • the bedroom floor showcasing the family’s private lives as well as a number of permanent exhibitions.

Perhaps the most unique feature of Westport House is that it is still filled with the original antiques, artwork, and artifacts belonging to the house.

Be sure to allow time to explore the extensive 400-acre grounds to take in views of Croagh Patrick, Westport House itself, the lake, gardens, and Clew Bay as you pass through the woodland and parkland setting.

Horse riding around Westport

Westport offers a superb horse riding experience in the unspoilt countryside of the West of Ireland. Treks are tailored to the experience and pace of each rider. All centres offer a wide variety of Irish sport horses and Irish cobs for their well-mannered attitude and sure-footed pace.

The go!trekking! centre has an abundance of rides to choose from; exhilarating beach treks, splashing through the shallows of the Atlantic ocean, meandering treks through the heather-clad foothills of Croagh Patrick or perhaps fast-paced woodland canters.

One of their most popular activities is beach riding. It’s a dream of so many horse riders to canter through shallow waves on a deserted beach. Treks are available to suit beginners and more experienced riders.

The go!trekking! equestrian centre is owner-run, by Michael Lennon and his hand-picked team of guides who will delight in sharing their knowledge of the area and folklore as you ride through this magical landscape.

Set Sail on Clew Bay with Westport Cruises!

Westport Cruises offers a daily 90-minute cruise on Clew Bay between 1st May to 31st October. It explores the world famous Clew Bay and its 365 islands, thriving seal colony, Croagh Patrick holy mountain, John Lennon's Island (an island hideaway which John Lennon of the Beatles owned and frequented), Inishgort Lighthouse, sites of disasters, battles, and much more. Clew Bay was home to the infamous pirate Queen Grace O Malley and Westport Cruises explores the rich history of this formidable woman.

Their modern passenger ship offers all amenities, including a fully staffed bar, café, onboard toilets and a 50-seater enclosed heated lounge with panoramic windows from which to take in the sights. Alternatively, you may grab some binoculars and view from the upper outdoor deck (seating available).

Cruises offer onboard guided commentary and free on-site parking. Card/cash payments are accepted onboard and onshore.

Located on Westport Harbour, within the town of Westport, Westport Cruises are a mere 5-minute drive or 20-minute walk from Westport Town Centre.

Matt Molloy's

Probably Westport’s most-famous pub. The proprietor, Matt Molloy, is a flautist with one of Ireland’s most famous traditional-music bands, The Chieftains. Regular trad sessions take place in the ‘back bar’, with appreciative patrons hupping along beside a crackling fire – often with Matt himself supplying the airs. The second Yard Bar out the back is a popular concert venue.