Inishmaan

Travel Guide Europe Ireland Aran Islands Inishmaan

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Introduction

Inishmaan (Irish: Inis Meáin, the official name, formerly spelled Inis Meadhóin, meaning "middle island") is the middle of the three main Aran Islands in Galway Bay on the west coast of Ireland. It is part of County Galway in the province of Connacht. Inishmaan has a population of about 160, making it the smallest of the Aran Islands in terms of population. It is one of the most important strongholds of traditional Irish culture. The island is predominantly Irish-speaking and part of the Gaeltacht, though all inhabitants have knowledge of English.

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Weather

The island has an unusually temperate climate. Average air temperatures range from 15 °C in July to 6 °C in January. The soil temperature does not usually drop below 6 °C (although the end of 2010 recorded a prolonged period of snow, the first in living memory).

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Getting There

  • Aran Directand Island Ferries, operate from Ros an Mhíl, in Connemara with bus connections to Galway City.
  • Doolin Ferries, run boats from Doolin in County Clare.
  • Aer Árann flights are available from Minna Airport in Connemara.

Inis Meain is highly accessible from the sea, via the harbour on the north side of the island. Ferries run regularly between here and rosaveal, and sail 364 days a year except in the most extreme adverse weather conditions.

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Eat

  • Ostan Inis Meain (Hotel Inis Meain), Lisheen Village, lnis Meain, The Aran lslands Co Galway (from the boat dock to the left, a large pink building; from the airport, turn left and walk 100 yards), ☎ +353 99 73020. From breakfast to closing time. The nearest place for food and accommodation to both the port and the airport. Panoramic views of Galway Bay.

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Drink

The island has a single, and very fine, pub, Teach Ósta.

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Sleep

There are B&Bs; alternately, knock on a door and ask if you can pay to pitch a tent in their field.

  • An Dun B&B and Restaurant. ( Opposite the big stone fort just beyond the church.) Great place, spotless, with very friendly hosts, also does a great dinner in the evening if you tell them before mid-afternoon.
  • Tig Congaile, Moore Village (straight form pier, first left, then right, then left, right again, 20 minute walk), ☎ +353 87 2035171. Check-in: 11, check-out: 12. Bed and breakfast and restaurant with scenic views looking out to the cliffs of Moher and Inis Oirr. Cuisine by the renowned chef Vilma a Guatemalan lady whose food is not to be missed. 45PPS.

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Keep Connected

Internet

Public WiFi services are available in many cafes, bars, restaurants and hotels. They are also available on most Irish long-distance Intercity trains, some commuter trains and buses. Internet cafes are available in major urban areas, but are not as common as they once were, due to the growth of 3G data services and public WiFi. However, you will still find them in areas popular with tourists.

Phone

See also: International Telephone Calls

There are currently four main mobile phone operators dominating the Irish market:

  • Vodafone (prefix 087 - GSM900/1800 - 3G 2100)
  • O2 (prefix 086 - GSM900/1800 - 3G 2100)
  • Meteor (prefix 085 - GSM900/1800)
  • Three (prefix 083 - GSM900/1800 - 3G 2100)

Most European phones and operators will allow you to roam on Irish networks, however you should ensure before arrival that your phone can operate on the GSM900/1800 network and that your service provider has set you up to allow roaming. This is especially true for visitors from outside the Eurozone. You can also buy a cheap prepay SIM card if you have an unlocked handset. This can be considerably cheaper as it means that you will be assigned an Irish number which you can be called at during your trip and your outgoing calls are charged at normal Irish mobile rates.
Pay phones are fairly widely available (but becoming less so) and most take euro coins, prepaid calling cards and major credit cards.
The police service (An Garda Síochána) and fire services can be contacted by dialling 999 or 112 on any phone or mobile phone throughout the country.

Post

An Post is the national postal service provider. They're generally open Monday to Friday, between 9:00am to 5:30pm or 6:00pm, and smaller post offices would also impose lunch-time closure. Half-day service is available on Saturday, from 9:00am to 1:00pm. The General Post Office (GPO) on O'Connell Street in Dublin is the main post office in Dublin, and it is open Monday to Saturday, from 8:00am to 8:00pm. The post offices are closed on Sunday and Bank Holiday. If you want to use private courier services for sending packages you can also use companies like DHL, UPS or TNT.

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This is version 6. Last edited at 9:18 on Feb 6, 19 by Utrecht. 2 articles link to this page.

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