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Dooagh Loop Walk - Achill Island

Achill Island is situated off the coast of County Mayo in the west of Ireland. It is the largest island in the country (24 km x 19 km) and is easily accessed from the Currane peninsula on the mainland by a substantial bridge. Achill encompasses dramatic land and seascapes which have provided inspiration for artists and writers for many years. Join the breathtaking Atlantic Drive along the coast and continue to Keel village to view the magnificent Minaun Cliffs. Or, climb Saddle Head at Keem Bay and view the sea cliffs at Craughaun (668m). Achill has a number of Blue Flag beaches and many archaeological and historical sites including the famous Deserted Village at Slievemore and Kildamhnait Castle associated with Pirate Queen, Grace O'Malley. Many activities are offered in Achill from watersports, diving and fishing to golf, and cycling. Achill has a rich cultural heritage, with painting, writing and archeological schools, traditional music and dance and, as a bilingual community, Irish is spoken in a relaxed natural environment.

A-B. Facing the mapboard, turn right and follow the purple arrow as the loop skirts around the back of some hoses to exit onto the main road (R319) at the memorial stone to Don Allum. Cross the road, turn left and, almost immediately, turn right onto a minor roadway. As you continue to follow this roadway along the Owenavalley River (Abhainn Bhaile in Irish) it changes from a surfaced road to sandy roadway. As you pass a second track on your left the roadway veers right and away from the river.

B-C. Continue along the roadway for nearly 2km as it passes through bogland and crosses a stream (midway) to reach a sharp right bend. After another 200m you reach a junction with a sand roadway from your left. Veer right here.

C-A. Now the loop begins the descent back to Dooagh Village along the Tenregee River Abhainn Toin re Gaoithe in Irish). At midway the roadway changes to surfaced road and on the final section you pass a number of bridges on your left. At the junction with the main road cross to the other side and the trailhead is 30m away.

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