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I hear Dún Aonghasa is a must-visit of all three Aran Islands? What's it all about?

I hear Dún Aonghasa is a must-visit of all three Aran Islands? What's...

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Group: Community Moderator Last Active: Wed 18 Sep 2019 8:34 AM Visits: 165
Standing in Dún Aonghasa is a little like teetering on the edge of the world. Dún Aonghasa (the fort of Aonghas, in Irish) is a prehistoric hill fort, perched precariously on a 100m cliff over the harsh Atlantic Ocean. It’s one of Ireland’s most ancient features, estimated to be more than 3,000 years old!

Like any good fortress, Dún Aonghasa keeps its secrets. No one knows who Aonghas was, and the rock platform that sits dramatically at the cliff edge remains a mystery. But that just adds to the appeal of this magical place. As you wander the ruins, it's best to let your imagination soar...

Dún Aonghasa is on Inis Mór (Inishmore), the largest of the three Aran Islands – the name actually means ‘big island’ in the Irish language. While this ancient fort is the island’s best-known attraction, Inis Mór has more than 50 different monuments from Christian, pre-Christian and Celtic eras.

Stretching out terrifyingly over the sea is Dún Dúchatair, also known as the Black Fort. Erosion from the wild ocean has left the fort on a thin platform over the water so peek over the edge at your own risk!

And don’t miss Teaghlach Einne, the house of St Enda, a little church half-buried in sand at Killeany graveyard. The graveyard is at least 1500 years old and St Enda himself, the patron saint of Inis Mór, is believed to be buried there.

Make sure to check out the island’s spectacular beaches and unique natural features. Kilmurvey beach lies in a sheltered cove, and has the calmest waters in the island. If you’re feeling adventurous, visit Poll na bPeist, also called The Wormhole - a spectacular naturally formed rectangular pool in the cliffs into which the sea flows in and out. Scary as it looks, it’s a popular cliff diving spot for thrill-seeking visitors.

There’s so much to explore on the Aran Islands, and Dún Aonghasa is just the start! Do any other Community members have any suggestions to share?

https://d2b4i25io5fq3v.cloudfront.net/18-10-2018/13431ae9-8cfc-4450-8674-f16d.jpg

Posted Thu 18 Oct 2018 12:35 PM
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Hi Susan, that's a great round-up of some of the attractions on Inis Mor, it really is a fantastic island, and well worth staying at least one night to appreciate it.  I've always loved the legends around the forts on the islands (there are 7 in total between the 3 islands).
Imagine a time machine taking you back to 500 years BC, when they say Dun Aengus was originally built....  Oh the stories!  Apparently the experts believe half the fort fell away into to the ocean - that would have been a rude awakening for some poor unfortunate chieftain ;)  I made a stab at putting some of the background to this fort in our blog on Dun Aengus.  

https://d2b4i25io5fq3v.cloudfront.net/15-11-2018/d766d54b-60ae-4cc5-b0c9-d65e.jpg


We are happy to take all history buffs (and non history buffs) to visit Inis Mor - we operate a daily ferry from Doolin every day from March to October, and, if you can, you should try spend at least one night going back in time..

All the best from Joan and the team at Garrihys Doolin2Aran Ferries
Posted Thu 15 Nov 2018 4:27 PM
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