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Some Landmark Co. Mayo Sites & Sights

Croagh Patrick,  nicknamed 'The Reek,’ is a  mountain and an important site of pilgrimage in County Mayo, Republic of Ireland. It is about 8 kilometres  from Westport, close to the villages of Murrisk and Lecanvey.  On the annual "Reek Sunday", the last Sunday in July, thousands of pilgrims climb it.

Saint Patrick is said to have fasted on the summit of Croagh Patrick for forty days in the fifth century and built a church there.

The well-worn 'Pilgrim's Path,' the route to the summit can be seen in this picture. The practice of climbing the mountain pre-dates Christianity.

The Reek

Clew Bay

Clew Bay lies due north of The Reek. It is littered with islands, sunken drumlins left there by melting glaciers during the last ice age. Tradition has it that there is an island for every day of the year in Clew Bay but the actual figure of 117 is still an impressive one.
Clare Island, at the mouth of the bay, is the best-known of those.

Marian Shrine, Knock

Left, the gable wall of the old church with the grotto erected to mark the site of the apparition and the nearby basilica erected in modern times

Probably the village of Knock is the best-known of Mayo landmarks and there are plenty of notable ones that spring to mind.

The cause of Knock’s fame is the fact that back in August 1879, 15 local people reported seeing the Virgin Mary, St. Joseph and St. John the Evangelist at the western gable of their parish church on August 21, 1879.

The Moy in spate near Swinford. There are stretches of the Moy where brown trout, pike and perch are plentiful and coarse anglers swell the numbers who bring their rods to the banks of this renowned river.

The Moy at Cloongullane

Ireland West Airport

Ireland West Airport is Ireland’s fourth international airport with a major increase in the number of passengers using the facility. Ireland West is the main international access gateway for the West, North West and Midland regions of Ireland. The Airport has also experienced rapid developments and now serves more than 20 scheduled and charter destinations across Ireland, the UK, Europe and beyond.

Ridge Pool, Ballina

The Ridge Pool is the best-known salmon fishing ‘beat’ in the country. Ballina Salmon Festival attracts  over 300,000 people from all over Ireland and the rest of the world each  year.  

The Moy is Ireland's leading Salmon river. Without doubt, the Ridge Pool, located in Ballina, is the premier fishing ‘beat’ or location in the country.

Anglers from all over the world head to the Moy and its tributaries and lakes to take their stand along the banks and try their luck as hordes of those regal fish pass by. The importance of this region as an angling paradise cannot be over-emphasised; over 30% of salmon caught on the rod in Ireland come from the Moy and surrounding lakes and rivers.

The local economy depends heavily on the presence of anglers sustain it.  Mayo has plenty of natural resources and attracts numerous tourists of all sorts but the fish of the River Moy are the major attraction for many.

Turlough Round Tower

Round Towers are a feature of the Irish countryside. Those medieval stone structures were built between the 9th and 12 centuries and there are roughly 60 of them to be seen in the country.  Of these, five are to be found in Mayo; the  example above is located in Turlough, near the modem town of Castlebar.
All were built in, or close to, monastic settlements. Their function remains unclear. Given their height, up to 40m (130 ft) in places, it seems likely that some were used as lookout towers. But others were sited in location where they would have ben little or no use for that purpose.
It seems certain that they were also bell towers,  erected to summon the monks and others in the locality to prayer.

Ballintubber Abbey

This abbey was founded in 1216 and is unique in that it has been used as a continuous place of worship since then.
 During the Protestant Reformation, the abbey was closed and the roof was removed but Catholics in the locality continued to use it as a place of clandestine worship.
Extensive renovations were carried out in 1966 and was re-opened in time for its 750
th anniversary.

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