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What is the best way to travel to the Aran Islands

What is the best way to travel to the Aran Islands

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I would like to travel to the Aran Islands. But I am doubting how to travel to them. By (small) plane or by ferry. Does the plane always depart? Same question for the ferry.  
Posted Wed 21 Nov 2018 1:43 PM
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Hello Alette
Welcome to the forum :) 
Did you have a specific time of year you would like to visit the islands?  This will determine your options.  We sail from Doolin, for example, from the months of March to October (sometimes early November if the weather is suitable).

Departure points:
There is a ferry from both sides of Galway Bay, Rossaveal on the Galway (north) side and Doolin on the Clare (south) side. The plane currently departs from the Galway side. The sailing to Inis Mor is shorter from the Galway side; the sailing to Inis Oirr is much shorter from the Clare side, and Inis Meain is pretty even from both sides.  It is also only possible to combine a trip to the Cliffs of Moher with a visit to one of the Aran Islands from Doolin on the Clare side.

https://d2b4i25io5fq3v.cloudfront.net/21-11-2018/c9545d43-3858-41e4-b4d2-38d7.png

Sailing conditions:
I cannot speak for the planes or indeed the Galway ferry, but with regard to sailings from Doolin, we sail every day from March to October, sailing conditions can vary, depending on wind direction and sea swells in particular  We will sail most days, however we watch the forecasts closely, and follow our captains' instructions, so occasionally we do cancel crossings but we always do our best to inform passengers of the conditions in advance and offer alternative days to travel.

I hope this helps your planning!

All the best from Joan and all at Garrihys Doolin2Aran Ferries 
Posted Wed 21 Nov 2018 3:32 PM
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Hello, Alette!

First of all, welcome to our Community Forum and many thanks to Joan for all the information and advice! 😊

Regarding your trip to our beautiful island I want to add these two conversations, where Joan also provided a lot of useful information about the Aran Islands, such as which one is the best to visit and why Dún Aonghasa is basically a must-see when you plan a trip to the Aran Islands!

Furthermore, I would love to help you to plan your trip to make it an unforgettable experience. Therefore, if you already have something planned, please tell me when you are planning your trip and if you are interested in any specific topics such as history, nature, hiking, etc. and how long you are planning to stay.

I hope this helps. Wenn du möchtest, kannst du uns auch sehr gerne auf Deutsch kontaktieren! ☘

Best regards,
Lenny
Posted Thu 22 Nov 2018 2:18 PM
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Hi, Alette!

When are you planning on visiting us? And how long and where have you planned to stay in Ireland? 

Francesco
Posted Sat 1 Dec 2018 7:05 PM
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At the moment I am gathering information for a future trip to Ireland. This trip will be to the Aran Islands and Beara Peninsula.. When I will go I do not know yet. I am planning to stay 2 nights at Inis Mor and 2 nights at Inisheer. Because flying will take only 8 or 10 minutes I will have all the time at Inis Mor. But I do not know how certain these flights are. So as a back-up plan I wanted to know about the certainty of the ferry.
Alette


Posted Tue 4 Dec 2018 10:05 AM
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Hi Alette
That's great that you intend to spend so much time on the islands - be careful, many have gone to the islands for a short visit and decided to stay ;)
With 2 nights on Inis Mor and 2 nights on Inis Oirr, why not take an inter-island ferry to Inis Meain and then you will see all 3?

Here's how you would do this is on the same day:
11.30am - Depart Inis Mor for Inis Meain (just a 15 minute ferry)
4.00pm - Depart Inis Meain for Inis Oirr (approx 45 minute ferry)

This way, you can spend the day exploring Inis Meain on your way to spending the night on Inis Oirr.  Inis Meain is the most traditional of the 3 islands, and certainly worth a visit. It is simply stunning, so unspoiled - not that the other 2 are....it's just that it is in another league of "unspoiled-ness" :)  
Ireland's famous playwright, John M Synge, spent a lot of time here and indeed based 2 of his play, Riders of the Sea and Playboy of the Western World on the island.  You can read more about Inis Meain here in our blog

Another great reason to visit is you can shop at Inis Meain Knitwear for some amazing sweaters and clothing - highly sought after around the globe!  
https://d2b4i25io5fq3v.cloudfront.net/04-12-2018/fad0608a-e51c-459c-b525-355f.jpg

Enjoy your planning  - I'm getting quite jealous of your trip now ;)

All the best
Joan from Garrihys Doolin2Aran Ferries

Posted Tue 4 Dec 2018 10:38 AM
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Hello Alette,

What have you got planned for your visit on Beara Peninsula? Do you have any activities in particular in mind or do you just want to enjoy the beautiful landscape? Beara has many places worth visiting for a brilliant holiday. 😊

If you are up for some adventure, I would advise you to take the cable car to Dursey Island. It’s the only cable car on Ireland and you will be swinging 250 meters above the sea! Or what about a little trip to Castletownbere? It is the perfect base for tourists to explore the unspoilt beauty of the Beara Peninsula’s flora and fauna and the many antiquities it has to offer. Such as diving, fishing, walking, bird and dolphin watching, and whales, swimming both in the sea and lakes or you could also do an archaeological tour.

I would recommend seeing the Healy Pass. That is most definitely one of the best drives you can do anywhere in Ireland. The landscape is littered with rocks and serves as grazing land for flocks of sheep emerging to a dramatic view which ever direction you travel in. 🐑

If you need still more details, I am happy to help you to plan your trip! Natürlich auch gerne in Deutsch, wenn du möchtest.

Kind regards
Zoey ☘
Posted Mon 10 Dec 2018 10:46 AM
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Plane or boat to the Arans?
That depends on taste.
The flight takes 8 minutes between Inverin and Kilronan on Inish More. If you love flying, it's a WOW experience! I've done one return flight to Kilronan and one round trip (Oct 2010), and it was wow-WOW! Both the staff at Connemara Airport and the captain were superb! I'd love to do it again. See image below.
I presume the boat is a very different experience and you get to feel the sea in a different way. I would love to try that option as well.
https://d2b4i25io5fq3v.cloudfront.net/25-01-2019/7048052d-c535-477f-94f9-6ad1.jpg


Posted Fri 25 Jan 2019 10:59 AM
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Hello Poul,

Thank you so much for sharing all of your amazing tips and suggestions here with our members! :)

It seems like you've been on many wonderful adventures around the island, and if you ever want to share more of your experiences, feel free to do so on our Tell Your Story section.

Thanks again for all of your super helpful recommendations, and we hope we get to see many more of them here in the future. :) 

Warm regards,

Melin


Posted Fri 25 Jan 2019 1:16 PM
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Hello Zoey,
Thank you for your information.
I am planning to visit;
Dursey Island
Bere Island
Making a day tour by car, visiting amoung others :
Kilcatherine Point
Healy Pass
taking the road from Allihies to Castletownbere.
Greetings Alette


Posted Fri 25 Jan 2019 2:09 PM
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