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Inisbiggle PierAchill IslandMayoRepublic of Ireland
Inishbiggle is a small island situated between the northeast of Achill Island and the mainland off the coast of County Mayo. The island is accessed by boat from Gubnadoogha at Ballycroy or Bullsmouth on Achill. The island is only 2.6 km2 in area – and is home to about 20 people. The main activities are farming (sheep and cattle) and fishing. The little Holy Trinity Church on the island has an interesting history. Constructed in the early 1900s (in a time of strict Church divisions) it was built exclusively for the use of the Protestant people on the island - Inishbiggle is the only Irish island that has a Protestant church of its own. Almost exactly one hundred years later (2003), Inishbiggle set a headline for ecumenism in Ireland, when the church was rededicated to serve both the Church of Ireland and the Roman Catholic communities.A-B. Starting from the mapboard at the slipway at Bull’s Mouth, follow the red arrow along the roadway. After 500m pass a roadway on your right and (after 100m) another on your left. Pass the Post Office on your right and (300m later) you reach a crossroads. You will be returning to this point towards the end of the loop. For now, proceed straight ahead.B-C. The loop now joins another loop which starts and finishes at the Gubnadoogha pier on the Ballycroy side of the island - this is marked with green arrows. Continue to follow the roadway past the schoolhouse (on your left) and a roadway (on your right). After 1km you reach the island’s Church at a crossroads. The loop turns left here - but you might like to take a short trip to the beach which is 100m straight ahead. C-D. From the church, the loop ascends gently and levels out to pass a laneway to a house (on your left) before turning left at a 3-way junction. Another 300m takes you to a T-junction where the green loop turns right toward the Gubnadoogha pier. You turn left here. [Note: if you have the time you might enjoy the trip to the Gubnadoogha pier - allow 30mins out and back to this point.]D-A. Follow the red and green arrows along the roadway to reach a house at a left bend. Turn left and after 50m pass a sandy roadway on your left. After 200m pass a roadway on your right and descend to reach the crossroads from where you began the loop at B above. The green loop turns left here - but you turn right and make your way back to the trailhead (1km).
Trekking shoes, raingear, fluid and mobile phone
Mulranny (4km) from pier
Inisbiggle Pier, Achill Island, Co Mayo