While they are famous for their sweaters, the Aran Islands offer more to visitors than knitted fashion. Dramatic views, scenic walks, and prevalent wildlife are all part of the peaceful way of island life. The three islands cluster together off the western coast of Ireland, near Galway Bay. The largest of the islands, Inishmore, is home to most of the Aran Island hostels, although you will be able to find lodging on the other islands as well.
The best way to see the islands are either on foot or by bike, weather permitting. You can also take a tour on a minibus or a private car tour from some of the local families around the islands as well, if the weather is particularly rainy or walking is less optimal for your visit. Since you can only reach the island by passenger ferry (or air, if you can afford it) there is no option really to drive around, so be prepared to stretch your legs in order to see the sights! You can catch a ferry from Rossaveal, Doolin, or Galway to the Aran Islands. If you are looking to buy food or other necessities, there is a small supermarket on Inishmore. It is also the only island with an ATM (inside the supermarket), so either have plenty of cash on hand or take out your money during the day.
The Aran Islands are a wonderful visit any time of year, especially given their close proximity to other Irish sights such as the Cliffs of Moher, the Burren, and Galway. Be sure to book in advance if you are planning on staying at any Aran Islands hostels during the peak seasons and holidays, as they can be quite busy!
Hi, I'm Emily Schreiber,
the Hostelz.com local expert for Aran Islands hostels. Welcome.