Dún na mBó, which is located at Doonamo Point, at the north-west end of the Mullet Peninsula, is one of the most spectacular blowholes in Co Mayo.
The blowhole is a short drive from Belmullet on one of the most exciting sections of Mayo’s Wild Atlantic Way – and while it is not as well known as the Downpatrick Head blowhole – it is equally as interesting.
The drive to Dún na mBó along the L1201 takes you through the pretty and historic Erris village of Corclogh with its mixture of impressive new dwellings and restored period homes which enjoy lovely views over the scenery of the northern end of the Mullet.
Situated on top of high cliffs with breathtaking views of the North Atlantic, Dún na mBó is one of the Discovery Points on the Wild Atlantic Way.
There is plenty of parking space along the road and access to the short walk to the sculpture and blowhole is through a pedestrian gate.
The blowhole is surrounded by an interesting sculpture which is one of five such structures located on the Mullet – and part of Tir Saile (The North Mayo Sculpture Trail) – with similar installations all along the North Mayo coastline.
The sculpture was designed by the American artist, Travis Price, and it is dedicated to those lost at sea off the Erris coast.
The sign at the entrance explains the inspiration for the Dun na mBó sculpture:
“The early Celts believed in ‘thin places’ – geographical locations scattered throughout Ireland where a person experiences only a very thin divide between past, present and future times; places where a person is somehow able, possibly only for a moment, to encounter a more ancient reality within present time; or places where perhaps only in a glance we are somehow transported into the future.”
However, some locals speak more prosaically about the history of Dun na mBó, recalling that in times past dead cows were disposed of by throwing the carcases into the blowhole.
A visit to Dun na mBó is never complete without walking or driving the short distance further along the road to where a vantage point gives an excellent view of nearby Eagle Island.