The top ten things to do in Killala - Visit North Mayo

Steeped in rich heritage and historical importance, pretty Killala offers the local and visitor alike both a wild and tranquil experience.  Whether it is walking in the same steps of the 1798 Rebellion or discovering one of the many hidden golden strands, Killala and its surrounding areas, nestled along the North Mayo coast on the Wild Atlantic Way has much to offer for all.  See below to discover the top ten things to do in Killala.

1.  Soak up Killala’s ecclesiastical history

In Killala you are surrounded by history, heritage and archaeology at every turn.  Ramble around the town and see Killala Round Tower, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, graveyard & souterrain.  Spot the green historical place plaques identifying buildings of historical importance. Explore the Neolithic landscape from Carrowmore Lacken to Céide, and try to imagine living here 6,000 years ago as the first cultivators did!

Just one glimpse of Killala’s iconic Round Tower
Killala’s Round Tower – 📸 by Liz King

2.  Cast a line under amazing Mayo skies

Killala is a fishing paradise, rich with maritime history.  Hire a rod and reel for shore or beach angling, or try a day of deep-sea angling for a multitude of species on glorious Killala Bay. There is excellent sea trout fishing along the coastline – bring the kids and head for Lacken or Kilcummin Pier.  Stroll along the winding shores of Palmerstown River, watching for kingfishers and dippers as you cast for trout and salmon.

Tel: Peter: +353 (0)87 275 4392 |  Email: [email protected]

Sea angling in Killala Bay with dolphins
Sea angling in Killala Bay

3.  Things to do in Killala – On your bike!

Explore the Wild Atlantic Way with the sun on your face and the wind at your back.  Cycle the Killala to  Ballina  Greenway  and  explore  the  Monasteries  of  the  Moy – Rathfran,  Moyne  and  Rosserk, while taking  in  Tobar  Mhuire  Holy  Well  at  Rosserk; spin  to Kilcummin  and  step  back  in  time  at  St. Cummin’s Church with its ancient graveyard & Holy Well, while enjoying stunning coastal views.

Tel: Mark +353 87 795 7104 | Email:  [email protected] |  Visit:

Cyclists in hi-vis at Killala Bike Hire Co. Mayo
On your bike!

4.  Enjoy secret beaches, golden sands and clear blue seas

A visit to Ross Strand is one of the best things to do in Killala.  This strand is a fully serviced beach with lifeguards (high season), picnic area, parking, WCs and shower facilities – don’t forget to bring your buckets and spades! Head to the vast Lacken Strand for some kitesurfing or find your own spot of deserted beach. Hire kayaks for a fresh new perspective, or  try scuba/snorkel  diving and surfing  at Kilcummin.  Find your inner calm with beach yoga on cool summer mornings.

Ross Beach Killala Co. Mayo Ross Strand
Ross Beach, Killala


Tel: David +353 87 680 8955 | Email: [email protected] | Visit:

Wild Atlantic Yoga:

Tel: Aideen +353 86 381 5973 | Visit: Wild Atlantic Yoga  

Diving info:

Tel: Gráinne Úaile SAC 086 791 0365 | Email: [email protected] | Visit:

5.  Forage for your food along the coast

Take  a  guided  tour,  including  wild  food foraging  and  outdoor  feasting  in  one  of  the  most  scenic parts of the country. Feed your body and sate your curiosity on one of Denis’ foraging forays, all of which culminate in a seafood feast. Or spend a few hours with the kids on a family foraging trip to Bartra Island.

Tel: Denis +353  83 0241570 | Email: [email protected]  | Visit:  Wild Atlantic Cultural Tours

foraging with Wild Atlantic Cultural Tours

6.  Walk right back to happiness:

One of the top things to do in Killala is to enjoy one of the many walking routes on offer.  These include the Kilcummin Loop walk – follow the arrows from Kilcummin Head, along the rocky shoreline and  onto  the  vast  strands  of  Lacken  back  beach  sand  hills,  passing two of the Tír  Sáile (North  Mayo  Sculpture Trail  sites), and find amazing  fossils on the  headland!

Try the Ross Loop (left from car  park)  and enjoy an hour’s walk/gentle  climb past the coastguard station, along tiny deserted beaches  before arriving at the glorious CBI beach, then back through the dunes to the road and back to Ross.

Visit:  North Mayo Walking Trails

Killala Quay Ballina Killala’s ecclesiastic history

7.  Explore the French and Yeats 1916 Connections

Learn  about  the fascinating heritage  of  the town  that  played  a big  part  in  the  1798  Rebellion  by reading up  on  some local  history  like Stephen Dunford’s ‘In Humbert’s Footsteps: 1798’, or Guy Beiner’s ‘Remembering the Year of the French’.  Make sure  to visit gorgeous Kilcummin  Harbour where General  Humbert  landed  with  1,100  French  soldiers  to  support the  Irish  in  their  revolution – you can even see the stone on which he first set foot.

Humbert Memorial in Killala County Mayo Ireland
Humbert Memorial in Killala County Mayo Ireland

8.  Grab a bite to eat

Killala offers an amazing selection of places to eat including The Kiosk Cafe, The Acres Killala And The Arch Bar & Restaurant Killala.

The Kiosk Killala is located on Market Street and serves breakfast, lunch and light bites. They are open 7 days a week during the Summer season. Sunday and Monday, the menu will consist of Coffee/Tea, scones pastries and desserts. The remainder of days, a full menu will be available. Lunch specials are on offer between 12 noon and 4pm.

The Acres Killala, is a family-owned bar, café, restaurant, and accommodation offering you the best of Irish food, tradition, and hospitality – located within walking distance from all of the town’s amenities. A daily breakfast and lunch menu is available from 9 am until 2 pm in The Acres Café. Enjoy a full homemade menu, tea, coffee, and daily homemade bakes. The dinner menu is served from 6 pm to 9 pm Thursday – Sunday. You will have lots of choices including daily fresh fish, prime Irish beef steaks, Irish chicken, and a choice of vegetarian and gluten-free dishes.

9.  Bring a song to share:

Enjoy an evening of folk music, song and story at the Killala Bay Folk Club (first Friday of the month). Listen to local traditional, bluegrass and rock music at the weekend in the friendly,  welcoming local pubs.  Try your hand at bingo on Wednesdays at Killala Community Centre. During the summer, festivals take place regularly around the region, and every August, you can jive to the best Irish country music at Killala Live Festival.

Killala Live Festival: Killala Live

Killala Bay Folk Club: Killala Bay Folk Club

10.  Things to do in Killala – Health & Wellbeing

Killala  is  the  perfect  place  to  unwind, where you can breathe  in  cool,  clean  sea  air  and free your mind.  There’s relaxation therapy at The Biodynamic Clinic on Killala Pier, creative and wellness work-shops at  The Joe Keane Creative Centre located at  the  Old  Deanery, a  local  homeopathy  clinic; and enjoy many edible seaweeds and sea vegetables along the shore.

Old Deanery – Liz on 096 32221 or +353 (0)86 345 1960  | Email: [email protected] | Visit:

The Biodynamic Clinic +353 (0)96 32514 | Email: [email protected] | Visit:

Stephen Blendell, Homeopath +353 (0)87 833 1613 | Email:  [email protected] | Visit:

For list of local accommodation and eateries, see:  &

Mary Molloy outside The Biodynamic Clinic in Killala, County Mayo, Ireland
Mary Molloy outside The Biodynamic Clinic in Killala, County Mayo

Other things to do in the area

There is so much to do in this beautiful quaint village. The above is just a selection. Don’t forget if you have children, why not let  them  run,  climb,  swing  and  have  a  great  time  at  the  new  playground, tennis  and  basketball courts at Killala’s town park.  Feed the ducklings and look for unusual birds along the protected shoreline.  Take part in one of the regular kids/adults aquathlons from the small pier, and enjoy an autumn night swim.

If you are looking to explore the area and surrounds a little further, why not check out our guide to the 15 great things to do in North Mayo.