A short, rainy boat ride lands us on Inisheer in the Aran Islands.
Inisheer is the smallest of the Aran Islands, with less than 1000 people living there. However, it’s chocked full of interesting an ancient history. Upon arrival, you see a beautiful white sandy beach with clear, vibrant water (even with no sun) with a labyrinth of rock walls leading up to an ancient castle at the top of the island. Near the port is all the normal things you’d expect to see in a small port – fishing boats, concessions, repair shops, which look more like kiosks here.
There is the strangest mix of modern and very old all in one small place. The weather gives it sort of a mystical feel as you stroll through the lanes of rock walls exploring the castle ruins, the pastures and the sunken church, which would have been entirely overtaken by the sands of time, if not for the efforts made to preserve this unique and beautiful site.
I found the stone walls of particular interest. No mortar is used to build these walls, and the rocks are all pretty large and very heavy. I can only imagine the time and effort it would have take to clear these areas for grazing and preserving the topsoil from being blown off in the harsh conditions of the islands.
After a nice visit, we boarded our boat again and headed off to see the Cliffs of Moher.