For a few short months, every summer, sailing vessels from far-flung shores cruise Mayo’s Wild Atlantic waters navigating the many islands, stacks, rocks, and hidden reefs that make our coastal waters so beautiful to admire but a treacherous world for the unprepared sailor.
Diamond Hill, overlooking Connemara National Park Visitor Centre in Letterfrack, is one of the most easily climbed mountains in Ireland, rewarding those who venture to the summit with magnificent views in every direction.
Standing in the safety of Killerduff, watching the awesome power of Mayo’s Wild Atlantic waves crashing over Downpatrick Head, got me thinking of the terrifying conditions only seafarers witness as they work the high seas to earn a precarious livelihood.
Before setting off for Enniscrone I had to use a spatula to scrape the layers of ice off the car windscreen. It was showing 1 degree Celsius on the car monitor and the road from Ballina was icy and dangerous.
The mists of time have once again briefly lifted on beautiful Doohoma beach to reveal the preserved remnants of a prehistoric forest that once covered Mayo.
The strange upside-down V-shaped object in the night sky over North Mayo on Wednesday night had all the appearance of a UFO – but the truth is far less exciting if nonetheless interesting.
When the sun shines I head to the Mayo coastline. My most recent excursion was to photograph Broadhaven Lighthouse, often called Ballyglass Lighthouse, located on the north-eastern tip of the Mullet peninsula at Gubbacashel Point.
Scotchport, a small and beautiful sheltered cove near Corclough on the Mullet, has an interesting history and today is a popular location for scuba diving in Mayo.
I couldn’t help thinking of the old Ealing comedy film, ‘Passport to Pimlico’, when I read that the Wild Atlantic Way Passport is to be introduced on a pilot basis in May.
The idyllic scenery on the drive from Geesala to Doohoma along the winding road that skirts Tullaghan Bay never fails to impress no matter how many times we make the journey.
I took advantage of the lovely weather we have been having of late to take a trip out to see the Stags of Broadhaven – one of Mayo’s most iconic and recognisable natural features, rising from the waves off the Dún Chaocháin peninsula along Mayo’s Wild Atlantic Way.
There is nothing better during the autumn and winter months than spending an hour or two picking cockles and mussels on one of Mayo’s magnificent Wild Atlantic Way beaches.
It was the perfect day for the annual horse racing on Doolough strand – blue skies, warm sunshine and a big crowd to ensure a carnival atmosphere – and to top it all a win for the grandson of one of Ireland’s most famous jockeys.
One of the most interesting aspects of my travels around Mayo is discovering the history behind some of the historic buildings that dot the landscape.
Ballycroy National Park Visitor Centre is a portal that opens the door to all that is wild and wonderful about Mayo. The Visitor Centre is located in the village of Ballycroy on the long and winding N59 road between Mulranny and Bangor Erris.
A visit to Glosh beach, at the southern end of the Mullet Peninsula, can sometimes turn up the most unexpected surprises – such as beach sculptures made from driftwood and other bits of flotsam washed ashore by the North Atlantic.