There’s no doubt that the Skelligs is a magical, mythical and incredibly tranquil place. Uninhabited since the 12th century, these two remote islands off the coast of County Kerry eternally echo with the voices of ancient Ireland. On Skellig Michael, now a UNESCO World Heritage site, you can follow in the footsteps of the monks who once lived there, and enjoy a sense of peaceful solitude as you gaze back across the ocean to the mainland 12km away.
The Skelligs, via @lighthunter77
But don’t take our word for it. Over the years, a whole host of internationally-renowned travel bloggers, writers and photographers have visited the Skelligs, and as you’ll see below, they tend to come away rather enchanted!
Gary Arndt, an American travel blogger and award-winning photographer, sold his house in 2007 and has been travelling the world ever since. He visited the Skelligs in 2013, and was incredibly impressed. “Simply put, Skellig Michael is fantastic,” he later wrote in his blog. “It is by far the most amazing thing I’ve seen in Ireland, and in my book it is one of the top world heritage sites in all of Europe.”
The Skelligs, captured by Gary Arndt
Experiencing the (often choppy!) boat journey across to Skellig Michael first-hand got Gary thinking about the monks’ dedication to their monastery. “I was astonished that people ever managed to land on the island, let alone live on it”, he notes. “That monks once lived here and created a small community is simply amazing.” Gary’s beautiful imagery perfectly captures the haunting beauty of the place these dedicated monks once called home.
Like Gary, Canadian couple Dave and Deb (aka The Planet D) hit the road back in 2008, and have been travelling the world ever since. The ‘Travel Blog of the Year’ award winners visited the Skelligs on a beautiful sunny day, and later put together this fantastic photo essay.
Dave and Deb on Skellig Michael, image via The Planet D
“We were lucky enough to have blue skies on the day of our landing at Skellig Michael,” they write. “It was a thrilling experience to step off the boat in the choppy waters and climb up the narrow steps to the start of the path.” Once they reached the peak, – “The isolation from the mainland and sheer beauty of the landscape” made them feel “just a little bit closer to heaven.” Dave and Deb also took the time to produce a video, which perfectly captures their Skelligs experience.
Looking out to Little Skellig, via The Planet D
Photographer John Finn hails from neighbouring County Cork, also on the Wild Atlantic Way. He captured some amazing imagery during his visit to the Skelligs, especially of the birdlife and puffins. Nature lovers will certainly enjoy his blog post, which details these beautiful birds; “For a few weeks in late May and early June each year Skellig Michael is home to hundreds (if not thousands) of Atlantic Puffins. They nest in burrows, many of which are alongside the steps so the birds are often literally within arm’s length of visitors. It is an extraordinary sensation to see them so plentiful.”
A puffin on the Skelligs, image via John Finn
John ends his blog with an urge to his fellow countrymen and women who may not have journeyed to the Skelligs yet! “I would strongly recommend more Irish people to visit this national treasure. Many people tell me that, yes, it’s on their bucket list and they’ll get around to it someday. Forget ‘someday’. Do it now.”
Skellig Michael, image via John Finn
We couldn’t agree more! Read more about the haunting Skelligs and how to get there, and start putting together your own unique itinerary on Skellig Michael with the help of our online directory.