Our Route begins on
Leaving the Park, take the right along the R336. 200meters on the right side is the small entrance to the wonderful Barna Wood.This wood is a must for any traveller and you will find many locals taking time to walk the Wood. People travel from the city and Connemara to take the numerous treks around the Wood. At the very back of the Wood are the start of Cappagh playing fields with GAA and Soccer clubs constantly engaged in games. As stated, the entrance is quite small and the parking area can only accommodate 10 to 12 cars. I recommend you park in Barna Church, just 800meters past the entrance.
Leaving Barna Wood, take a right turn back onto the R336. Just 100meters on the left is the road to our first beach, Silver Strand. The road down is clear to see and is flanked by double yellow lines as there is no parking allowed on that road. The parking area is located at the beach, approx 1/4 mile down. This is a large beach and is covered by a Life Guard during the summer months. It can be quite difficult to get parking on weekend days during the summer months, so think about parking in Barna Church and walking down. Once again the views are fantastic. There are toliet facilities and normally an ice cream van, but its a long hike to a local shop. Take a look athe picture to the left. See if you can find this hidden gem (magical well) on the way to Silver Strand.....
Leaving the road from Silver Strand take the left at the top of the road back on the R336. 30 meters on the right side is the entrance to Barna Church, well worth a visit. The Church was burned down in the 1970's and the story is told on the stone monument at the front of the Church. This monument is taken from the original Barna Church. Follow the R336 for 1.7 miles.The next left tunr is Mags Boreen another 20 meters on the right side is Barna National School. Moving 200 meters on the right side is the local Barna Post Office. 100meters on the left hand side are a Doctors Surgery and Pharmacy, just before the main junction. At the main junction is The Twelve Hotel and Donnelllys Pub. There is a set of traffic lights here but they are not always in use. Take the left turn to Barna Pier and more stunning views of the bay. The Pier is a working Harbour where you can book fishing trips and safari fishing. Sitting at the entrance to the Pier is one of Galways finest restaurants, O'Gradys. Take the right turn at the traffic lights to the entrance to The Twelve Hotel and the road to Moycullen.
Follow straight on through Barna Village. 200 meters on the right (just past the front of The Twelve) are a number of shops. The next left turn will take you to the local Supermarket and Mulberry Restaurant. Back on the main R336 road and leaving Barna. Just pas the sign for Barna is the Claret Villa B&B on the left of the road, another 100 meters on is the left is the Stream House B&B. The local road is Cnoc Na Gréine Baile. The area is known as Na Foraí Maolo Thair (Forramoyle West).
Travelling back on the R336 we enter Na Forbacha (Furbo) and the large sign on the left side of the road 'Fáilte Go Conamara'. The next road on the right is Coismeig Mór Baile where you will find Lóc Lurgan Loistin B&B. The large buildings to the right are Udaras Na Gaeltachta. On the left of the R336 is The Connemara Coast Hotel. Following along the road for .2miles (.32km) is the Furbo National School on the left side. Just pas the school, also on the left, is the local hall Aras An Phiarsaigh Na Forbacha (Boxing, Karate, Badminton). 20meters along on the rght of the R336 is Cnocán An Bhodraigh (Seana Fhreachóg) while another 20meters on the right is Ollmharagdh Na Bhforbacha, Slemons Service Station with plenty of parking at the rear. 30 meters on the left side of the road is An Chéad Eitilt Creche. Further along the road you will find the beautiful Séipéal Na Forbacha (Furbo Church) with Labyrinth and Reilig (Graveyard). 20meters past the Church is Cedar Lodge B&B, on the left side of the road. .2 miles (.32km) further on is Furbo Beach and prom, easily found on the right side of the road. At the end of the small prom is Padraighins Pub & Restaurant with B&B overhead. Again .32km along in Baile Aill An Phréacháin on the right side, just up the hill. 100meters on is the Atlantic View B&B on Doire Locháin Thoir (Baile).
Liopa baile (Road) can be found .6miles (.96km) along on the right. Just .15km ahead is Baile Pairc Thoir and further on is the Áras Chois Fharraige (Nursing Home) on the right side. Just a few hundred yards on, as the road curves from right to left, are two B&B's to the right hand side. is located to the right side with a small drive up to the entrance. The Park Lodge has two entrance on the R336. The next entrance is a further 800 meters on the same side. Continuing on for another .15km is Baile An Tsleibhe on the right side. Just .15km further on is the beautiful Cloch Na Scith on the left of the road. This is a collection of cottages that are available to rent. Baile Coilleach is .15km on the right side with a B&B called An Corrach Mór offering accommodation.
All along the R336, from Na Forbacha to Spiddal, the beauty of Galway Bay, The Hills of Clare and the Aran Islands continues to unfold.
Now on the right side is Colaiste Connacht a famous Irish Summer College which is situated in the Spiddal GAA Club Grounds. drive in and park on the raised carpark for a stunning view of the bay. Following on, the second Udaras building is on the right side in an industrial estate (An Sagart) on Baile na Tsagart. The next right turn will take you to the Spiddal Holiday Homes. Just .15km on the left side is the famous gift and craft shop of Standúns . Just 50 yards on the right side is Baile Eamon with Baile Liam a further 200 yards on as we begin to enter Spiddals promenade. Spiddal prom is perfect for a swim or walk with a Life Guard on duty for the months of July and August. And yes, you can surf here, at the right time. Spiddal deserves a full investigation with all you need from restaurants, pubs, take away Pizza (Excellent Italian) and craft shops. Visit the Prom, The Church (in its Gothic Style), The Ceardlann Craft and Gift Village with its own Coffee Shop serving quality produce. Visit the pier and take any number of walks. The set of Ros Na Run can be found, just outside the village, on the road to Moycullen (take a right at the traffic lights in Spiddal). There is also a large, very well stocked Texaco petrol station in Spiddal. Spiddal is also home to the famous Boluisce River. The is one Hotel on the main street, An Cruiscin Lán.Taking a left turn after the Church, at the traffic lights, will take you to the old Pier with stunning views of the Bay, Clare and the Aran Islands.
At the West end of the Village is the entrance to the main working pier with a sheltered beach. This is where the excellent Galway Bay Fishing company take visitors for day trips to fish in the seas around the Aran Islands.
Leaving Spiddal, going west on the R336 will take us towards Indreabhán (Inverin). The first sign on the left tells us we are entering the townland of 'An Chnoic'. On the right side of the road is Baile Cnocan Gías with a number of B&B's just .15km on either side of the road. Baile An Chré Dhubh is on the right .15km. A further .15km are two more B&B's providing accommodation within a short walk of Spiddal on the west side of the Village. Another .5km is Sáile Thúna on the right. The beautiful beech of Trá Sailin is signposted on the right, .5km past Sáile Thúna.There isa very small area for parking (10 cars). 200yards on is theSailin B&B with Tig Cualáin Pub and Bed and Breakfast .3km onwards. Tig Cualáin has plenty of parking a beer garden and fabulous views. This is an Irish speaking Pub within an Irish speaking area.
Just .5km on is a sign for Trá Mór on the left of the road. Trá Mór has plenty of public parking and also clean public toilets. The beech is covered by a Lifeguard during July and August and offers a bueatiful location for a swim. Just another .5km on is the centre of Indreabhán (Poreen) with a large supermarket (Síopa An Phobal), credit union, petrol station (Síopa an Phobal) and the famous Colaiste Lurgan, one of the largest Irish Summer Colleges in Ireland. Behind the Credit Union and Colaiste Lurgan is another of the Industrial Estates on the R336 with CL Print (Clodoíri Lurgan) and Socos Teo among a number of companies in the estate.The river Cnoc flows through Poreen just beside Síopa an Phobal. Through Poreen the road rises with the Invein Graveyard on the left, towards the sea, and Cumann Michael Breathnach on the right side. This fanous GAA Club has a long and interesting past and there are few venues for Gaelic Games that provide such a wonderful setting to either watch or play Gaelic games. Cumann Michael Breathnach has a large carpark, handball alley and a covered stand with stunning views towards the bay.
Leaving Michael Breathnachs we come to An Bóthar Buí on the right side of the road. At the top of this road are a number of large Windmills generating electricity through eco-energy. As the road rises Knock Church can be found on the right side with a Community Centre to the rear. Just .15km onwards there is Bother Na hAille on either side of the road with Tigh Neils Esso Petrol Station and Shop to the right hand side. There is a payzone for Toll Roads here and a good car cleaning service. Scoil Sailearns primary school os on the right and is an all Irish speaking school. .4km on and we find Seanscioil Sailearna with a Fás office and information point. This building also houses a weekly Cinema Club called Club Scanna. .5km on is the Secondary School of Scoil Cholmcill witha small industrial estate to the right.
Tigh Mhollys Pub is an Irish speaking Pub on the right side of the road and is well worth a visit with another Pub, an Poitin Still just .5km further on the same side of the road. 2.4km along the R336 is the Sea View Lodge Hostel.
The road winds for a short distance as we see a large gable wall with advertisine for the Airport & Aer Arann. We cross the Crumlin River and to the right there is a turn that would take you to the Crumlin Lodge which has long burnt down but the scenery on the roads here is fantastic.
.5km from the river is Nancys Hair Salon and Connemara Furniture and just .8km ahead on the right side is Minna Church (Beautiful and difficult to spot) and the famous Coláiste Uí Chadhain Irish Summer College in St Bridgets old primary school. The college is one of the smaller summer schools but is reknown for its teaching standards and the excellent reveiws from past pupils. This area is known as Na Minna.
Are Arann and the Connemara Regional Airport is 1km further on the left side of the road, towards the sea. Drop down and watch the flights take off as they service the three Arann Islands. This is a main point of contact for the Islanders and flights are very reasonable. They flight itself takes between 7 and 10 minutes while it offers amazing sights of the Connemara Coastline and the Islands. The Airport offers a Coffee Shop during the summer season.
Tir Na Nóg Public house is just .4km further on with ample parking and live music on a regular basis. Another small Industrial estate is a further .4km along the right side of the road with Tully Church appearing on the left. As the road bends to the right we travel past Ti Johnny Seans Pub to the left and Tully National School to the right. This school is also part of Coláiste Uí Chadhain in the Summer. Directly beside the Pub is TG4, the home of Irish Television. Drop in and see if there is any chance of a quick tour. Travel along to the next shop, .6km on the left. This is Durkins Costcutters and has an excellent selection of products. At the next crossroads just 100yards past the shop we can take an immediate left to the beautiful Ballynahowan Pier, go straight ahead (second left) will take us to Bantrach and the back road to Ros a Mhil or keep on the R336 for Ros a Mhil and follow the road to the right.
My prefered route is the second left for Bantrach and the only time we leave the R336. First off take a spin down to the Pier in Ballynahowan (exactly 1 mile, 1.6km). The Pier is beautiful. with views to the islands and the perfect location for a dip in the sea if you can find the beach on the other side of the pier (see Ballynahowan Walk in the activities section of this website).
Taking the second left off the R336, after Durkins Shop, we travel towards Bantrach. 1.6km on is Peadar Mhórs Pub. Its a must for a pint of Guinness. Follow the road on and we keep to the wonderful coastline scenery with signs for Sli Chonnamara to the right (Connemara Walk). Stopping and walking anywhere will give you food for thought. The road curves to the right. 2.7km after Peadar Mhórs Pub is Ros a Mhil harbour. Take a left turn at the junction for the harbour and a right turn to the Church, Pub and the road back to the R336 and on to Carna and many, many other stunning locations found in Connemara South.