Instagram is now the most popular photo-sharing app in the world!
And it’s no wonder – this great platform allows you to not only share your adventures, but with its easy-to use features, Instgram allows even the most amateur of photographers to take great shots.
Ireland is full of iconic places in which to get great photos, and here in North Mayo we have a few iconic Instagram spots of our own. Here’s our selection of the most Instagrammable places in the area – and we’d love to hear yours, too!
Where it all began! The very first farmers laid down their fields in Céide nearly 6,000 years ago, and the stunning location of the Céide Fields at the edge of the cliffs along with the magical North Mayo light lends itself well to some great Instagram captures.
At the Céide Fields Visitor Centre (open March – October), you can get a guided tour of the field settlement, visit the exhibition explaining how the fields were formed and found, climb to the top of the iconic pyramid-shaped viewing tower and enjoy a relaxing coffee and treat in Brambles Café.
We love sharing the magic of Belleek Woods with the world. One of the largest urban forests in Europe, with over 22,000 trees, and a number of waymarked walks and trails, there is a surprise around every corner.
The Knox-Gore family, who once owned Belleek Castle (see below!) left their mark on the woods with a surprising number of follies and monuments hidden among the tracks and trails. And of course, the Belleek Fairy Trail is now a great addition for children.
Connacht Whiskey Company
One of our newest tourist attractions in North Mayo, a tour and tasting at Connacht Whiskey is fast becoming a must-do in the area. You can take a tour of the on-site distillery and see how our local spirits – Conncullin Gin, Strawboys Vodka and Poitín – are produced, and learn how a friendship spanning the Atlantic Ocean led to the ancient craft of making pot still Irish Whiskey being revived along the banks of the River Moy.
And of course, it would be rude not to have a taste …
Whiskey tasting I much prefer #gin #connachtwhiskey #connacht #ireland #poitin #ireland #shots #whiskey #irishwhiskey #ballina #newyear #2018
One of many monastic ruins along the River Moy, Rosserk Friary is one of the finest and well-preserved examples of a Franciscan Abbey in Ireland.
It’s accessible to the public and is well worth a visit on any trip along the Wild Atlantic Way in North Mayo.
One of Ballina’s most iconic buildings, and housing a multitude of treats! As well as the castle itself, where you can pop in and enjoy afternoon tea in the drawing room in front of the glowing open fire (booking essential!), and the fine dining experience in the Library Restaurant, you can also enjoy tasty treats in the beautiful, Jack Fenn Café in the courtyard adjoining the Castle (open Wed -Sun).
A visit to the quirky Marshall Doran Collection is an absolute must, where you’ll see everything from real dinosaur fossils, to an incredible armoury collection, to pirate queen Gráinne Uaile’s very own bed. Check www.belleekcastle.com for details of opening hours and tours.
St. Muredach’s Cathedral on the River Moy, Ballina
An iconic shot of St. Muredach’s Cathedral on the River Moy is a must on any visit to Ballina. No matter what time, day or night, the sight of this magnificent church overlooking our famous salmon fishing river is an iconic sight.
And the very best time to see it is during Ballina Salmon Festival in mid-July, when it provides the backdrop to the town’s annual fireworks display, the climax of the festival.
Foxford Woollen Mills
One of the biggest tourist attractions in Mayo, The Foxford Woollen Mills has so much to offer. From a shopping experience (we challenge you to leave without a shopping bag) to food in the gorgeous Foxford Café, to a visitor tour of the oldest working mills in Ireland, there is something for everyone.
The story of Mother Agnes Morragh Bernard, who had to be one of the strongest, most determined and most forward-thinking women of her time, is worth the visit alone.
Foxford Woollen Mills has recently redeveloped its visitor tour, and a percentage of all tour admissions goes to charity. As if you needed another reason!
Out and about in Mayo. #foxfordwoollenmills #foxfordcafe #morningcoffee #weaving #wool #dayslikethese #youcanneverhaveenoughknitwearinyourlife #irishmill #woollenmill #mayo #irishwool #handmade #persuepretty #outandaboutinmayo #flashesofdelight #alifelessordinary #morningslikethese #irishcountrylife @foxfordwoollenmills
Still a rather secret gem on the tourist trail, Nephin is growing popularity annually. The second highest mountain in Connacht, it presents a challenging but enjoyable climb, and legend has it that from the top, you can see seven counties on a clear day. Perfect for a good Instagram shot!
Nephin is equally lovely from the bottom ….
….. or from the top!
And of course, no Instagram list would be complete without the iconic Downpatrick Head near Ballycastle. One of 15 Signature Discovery Points along the Wild Atlantic Way, there is plenty to see at this iconic site.
Much credit must go to the McCormack family who have allowed the public access to their land, and there is nothing quite like that walk up to the headland on the lovely, soft ground, to the edge of these spectacular cliffs where Dún Briste, the magnificent sea-stack stands, sentry-like, beaten by the Wild Atlantic Waves.
At the site you’ll also find a World War II Look Out Post, the EIRE 64 sign, designed to guide pilots in Wordl War II, the ruins of an ancient church, a statue of St. Patrick and of course, the Spirit of Place Installation, “The Crossing” which guards the Poll na Seantine (Hole of the Old Fire) blowhole.
There were literally thousands of shots of Downpatrick Head on Instagram, each better than the last. Always remember, safety first when experiencing our beautiful destination. DO NOT access the caves at Downpatrick Head without an experienced tour guide. Always check the weather forecast and tide times if near the water or out hiking/walking/cycling. Conditions change very quickly along the ‘Wild’ Atlantic Way!
Downpatrick as seen from the skies …
Putting the drone to good use at Downpatrick Head The marking ‘Eire 64’ was a marking made in WWII to notify planes that they had reached the coast of Neutral Ireland. #hero4 #phantom #phantom2 #dji #djiphantom2 #drone #dronestagram #dronephotography #ireland #instaireland #tourismireland #failteireland #thewildatlanticway @thewildatlanticway #irelanddaily #wanderlust #travelphotography #travel #travelguru #mayo #downpatrickhead #dunbriste #seastack #wwii
We’d love to to know what your favourite Instagram spots are. Follow and Tag us , use the hashtag #MayoNorth and #NorthMayo or leave us a comment on Facebook!