What is the Gaeltacht?
The Gaeltacht covers extensive parts of counties Donegal, Mayo, Galway and Kerry, all of which are on the western seaboard, together with parts of counties Cork, Meath and Waterford. The term "Gaeltacht" describes those areas where the Irish language is the community language of anything ranging from pockets of Irish speaking families to a mayority of the community. All of the population of some 86,000 is also fluent in English.
The Gaeltacht areas are the unbroken link with a past that saw Irish as the main language in Ireland. They are a vital lynch-pin for the transmission of Irish as a community language to the next generation and a cornerstone in the development of a truly bilingual society in Ireland.