Westport, Co. Mayo

Westport (Irish: Cathair na Mart, literally 'the city of the Beef') is a town located on at the south-east corner of Clew Bay, on an inlet of the Atlantic Ocean in County Mayo. The town of Westport is one of the few architecturally planned towns in Ireland and offers a wide range of craft and woolen shops, traditional pubs with live music and superb restaurants, many specialising in seafood. Among the most picturesque features of the town is its tree-lined, flower decorated, promenade (The Mall) and little stone bridges along the river Carrow Beg.

The famous pilgrimage mountain of Croagh Patrick, known locally as "the Reek" lies some 10km west of the town near the villages of Murrisk and Lecanvey. The mountain presents a striking backdrop to the town. The church on the summit can just be made out with the naked eye from Westport.

Westport is an ideal base for touring Connemara, Sligo, Galway and Donegal, all of which are within easy driving distance. It is also within easy reach of many superb Sandy Beaches.

The town is well known as a sea fishing centre and its annual festival attracts many visitors. There is bathing at many nearby beaches and a championship golf course (18). 2km (1 mile) from the town is West port House, home of the Marquess of Sligo. It is a fine Georgian mansion designed by Richard Castle with additions by James Wyatt, and the contents include English and Irish pictures, silver, Waterford glass, and exhibits of historical interest. The house is open from mid-May to mid-September. In the woods is a late English style church with a beautiful interior.

5km (Three miles) north of Westport is the sailing centre at Glenans, Rosmoney. The Clew Bay Heritage Centre depicts the maritime history of the area and local history and traditions. It also provides a genealogical service.


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