Achill Island on the Wild Atlantic Way

Achill goes Wild!

What is the Wild Atlantic Way?

The Wild Atlantic Way is a scenic coastal drive, walk or cycle along Ireland’s Atlantic Coastline. It stretches 2,750 km (1,700 miles) along the west coast from Kinsale in Co. Cork in the south to Co. Donegal in the north.

The Wild Atlantic Way is can be enjoyed over a few days to several weeks, with over 1,000 Attractions, over 2,500 activities including walking, cycling, kayaking, surfing, fishing and more, over 50 Blue Flag beaches, nearly 20 long distance walks, over 120 Golf courses and over 500 festivals and events to enjoy during each year.



Along the route there are 15 iconic "Discovery Points" that embody the Atlantic coast of Ireland, and one of these is Keem Bay on Achill Island. It is proposed that a viewing platform be built at Keem Bay as part of the Wild Atlantic Way development plan.

All over the west coast, the route has been signposted with this signage (although be a little bit careful as it's not always signposted correctly -North is sometimes South and vice versa!) .Wild Atlantic Way signagewild atlantic way








You can view and download the Wild Atlantic Way map here

Visit one of Achills Beaches

Located on the North of Achill Island, Dugort has two sandy Blue Flag beaches. The smaller of the two is located at the foot of Slievemore and is known as The Silver Strand, it is popular with swimmers, families and walkers. There are the remains of a now submerged forest at the end of beach nearest Slievemore. Every New Years Day there is an annual swim or quick dip in the ocean! The location is rich in flora and fauna and the beach is within a Special Area of Conservation. There is car parking and picnic tables. There are lifeguards stationed there during the summer season.   

One Of two Dugort Blue Flag beaches, The Golden Strand can be found approximately 3km east of Dugort Village. It looks out onto Blacksod Bay. There is car parking, but the beach is not wheelchair-accessible.  It is the location of The Blueway Kayak Trail. Sightings of bottlenose dolphins and seals are possible along this trail.

Keel is a sandy, gently curving, south facing beach.  It is a famous stretch of strand for most water sport activities especially surfing. Located beside Keel village, it is approximately 3km's in length. Very popular with Locals and tourists alike, it starts from a rocky outcrop at Keel village to the base of the magnificent Minaun cliffs, which tower 466m's above the beach. Excellent for walkers, joggers and dog walkers. There is also plenty of parking available along the beach.  It is also where the famous Blackfield "Surf Bus" is located, make sure to get a coffee, hot chocolate, hire surf equipment or just get your photo taken beside this Ex-Dublin Bus double decker, now living a far more chilled out life. Lifeguards are stationed on the beach during the summer season. 

Dooega blue flag beach is just 8 kilometres from Achill Sound in a small coastal inlet, at Dooega village. The beach is on the Atlantic Drive, which overlooks the Atlantic Ocean along the southern edge of Achill island.  Parking is available, and there is an access ramp, as well as life-saving equipment on the beach, but no lifeguard.  Dooega is an old fishing village and the sheltered south facing beach is perfect for summer swimming and sunbathing.

Keem Bay is a blue flag beach located as far west as you can go by car on Achill Island.  The bay was used for hunting basking sharks which were then towed by boat to Purteen harbour. There are numerous viewing points on the drive down to the beach with a selection of car parking places.  There is an old British army lookout post on the top of the hill to the bay's south. To the north stands Croaghaun, with Europe's highest sea cliffs. Keem Beach is located in a beautiful horseshoe bay and is a sheltered, sandy strand surrounded by high cliffs.  The beach is very popular for water sports, especially snorkeling which has a Blueway Trail.  The beach has lifeguards stationed there during the summer season.


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