The landscape of Lettermore is sparse and wild. This is the land of the Connemara Pony, a harsh austere landscape of rock and water with scant patches of good ground. And all of this privation gives rise to a special breed of ponies of hardy, strong individuals. Some believe that the Connemara Pony evolved from the tough Scandanavian ponies brought to Ireland all those years ago by Viking settlers. Others believe that the source for the Connemara Pony may have been the “Irish Hobby”, a now-extinct breed of workhorse which was common across much of Ireland up until the 13th century. Legend, however, says that galleons from the Spanish Armada ran aground off Galway in 1588, and that the fine military Andalusians were set loose by the Spaniards, to breed with native stock. But, whatever the source, the rugged Connemara Pony is undoubtedly a distinctive breed in its own right, and it is greatly valued in the Connemara region as a whole, and particularly in the semi-barren peninsulas of Lettermore and West Galway.
The Lettermore-Lettermullen Peninsula is actually a series of small islands which are linked together by the R374 roadway. It twists and turns between great boulders and patches of Atlantic seawater to carry you through Lettermore’s near barren terrain, to Lettermullan, its ultimate offering. All of the road signs are in Irish, and the place-name, since they translate very differently to what you see on your map, are practically unfathomable…. in the nicest possible way!
Lettermore boasts a contrasting landscape of rugged coastline, sandy beaches and clear crystal waters, all in an environment where the Irish language thrives, and the traditions and culture of the Gaeltacht are very much alive.
Getting to Lettermore
By bus, or car. Bus Eireann Route 424 provides a service from Galway to Lettermullan. Alternatively take the R336 west from Galway to Casla, and then the R374 to Lettermore.
Follow the coast
Lettermore is surrounded by beautiful coastal towns. Don't miss Kilkieran and Roundstone if you are travelling north, and Carraroe, and Rossaveel, if you are travelling south.
Where to stay
Lettermore has good choices of comfortable places to stay including small hotels, self-catering holiday homes, guesthouses and B&B's.