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Belmullet and the Mullet Peninsula

Ireland Map
The Gael Saoire Belmullet and the Mullet Peninsula
With its craggy edges scalloped with quiet sandy beaches and shallow bays, this long finger of land projects out into the Atlantic Ocean. The Mullet Peninsula is, in fact, almost an island, joined to the mainland only at Béal an Mhuirthead (Belmullet). Here you will find some of the finest beaches in Ireland, with rolling sand dunes, untouched and unspoiled since time began. For watersports, the Mullet surely has the best of both worlds. The exposed Western shoreline, facing the islands, is a paradise for windsurfing, canoeing and sailing while the eastern side of the Mullet offers more sheltered and crystal clear, calmer waters, like Cuan Oilí or Mullagh Rua, for instance.

Near the southern tip of the Mullet Peninsula is Eachléim (Aughleam), a tranquil Gaeltacht townland which was recently awarded the coveted European environmental quality mark codenamed BEATHA, a status which indicates the unpolluted and untouched nature of this beautiful landscape. This is a community steeped in spoken Irish and in all that is best in Gaelic music and tradition. The name Eachléim is derived from the Irish words, ‘each’ meaning a horse and ‘léim’ meaning jump. Local folklore has it that a mythical horse leaped from the western end of the townland to the east, giving the land in between its name.

The Islands Off the coast to the west lie the beautiful and tranquil Inis Gluaire (Inishglora) Inis Geidhe (Iniskea) Islands, all of which are steeped in history and where monasteries flourished in early Christian times. Iniskea, uninhabited since 1927 is now home to a variety of bird life, including half of the Irish wintering population of Barnacle Geese.

The Iniskea Islands contain a wealth of archeological material dating to the early Christian period and more recently Iniskea South was the site of a whaling station, the remains of which are still evident. Colmcille, the great Irish saint, founded a monastery here in the 6th Century.

Inis Gluaire can also boast of its noble past. The remains of a monastic settlement founded by St. Brendan the navigator, who died in 577AD are still evident. According to the great Irish legend The Children of Lir – Conn, Aodh, Fiachra and Fionnuala are buried here.

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