The ruggedly beautiful Atlantic island of Inishturk sits in a time zone all of its own, giving us a tiny glimpse of Ireland as it was in the 1950′s and 1960′s. That’s not to say that they don’t have any of the trappings of modern life as we know it. They do! But they have a different attitude to time and conversation, and their ambition leans in an altogether different direction to ours. Life on Inishturk is imbued with a purity and a resolve which is not found anywhere else. It has to be, because, when the winter sets in, life is hard, and there is no place for nonsense in this offshore Atlantic community. And so, a visit to Inishturk is like a pilgrimage or a sodality, and one feels cleansed and purified, and in an altogether better place.
Inishturk rises boldly from the North Atlantic in a series of sheer cliffs and steep hills, and high on their summit stands the ruins of its old Napoleonic signal tower, 722 ft above sea level. Inhabited on and off since 4000 BC, the island’s rugged pathways and trails offer hill walkers plenty of opportunities to explore. Exotic deep-sea diving and boat trips to the neighbouring islands are only an enquiry away and can be organised by the boatmen or through any of the B&B’s.
On the eastern side on Inishturk are the secluded Tranaun and Curran beaches, with fantastic clear blue waters, and ideal picnic and swimming spots. Watch the sun go down on what locals claim to be the very best views in Europe! And if you want to to have the full island experience, why not round the day off with a pint of Guinness and some traditional set dancing in the island’s lively community centre. It really is another world!
Getting to Inishturk
By ferry or yacht. The Clare Island Ferry Company provides several sailings daily between Roonagh Point and Inishturk Island. Journey time is approximately 40 minutes.
Where to stay
For a small island, Inishturk has a good choice of places to stay including self-catering holiday homes, guesthouses and B&B's.
Inishturk is surrounded by beautiful coastal towns. Don't miss Clare Island and Louisburgh if you are travelling north, and Killary Harbour, and Renvyle, if travelling south.
Things to do in Inishturk Island.
Inishturk is well known for Scuba-Diving, and wreck dives are organized throughout the summer months which are some of the best on the west coast of Ireland.
On the protected eastern side of the island are ’Tranaun’ and ’Curraun’, sandy beaches that boast the clearest blue waters and some of the best views in Europe. Completely sheltered by coves, they are ideal for young and old alike.
Ornithology enthusiasts will be enthralled by the number of nesting birds on Inishturk’s impressive sea-cliffs. It’s flora is also of international importance, the Spotted Rock-Rose (Tuberaria guttata), among others, being a rare endangered species.
Fishing for “Inishturk lobster” and the Island’s huge edible crabs are the main commercial fishing activity on the island. Enjoy the very freshest of fish, lobster, and crab with your dinner.