Clew Bay from the South
(photo credit: Paul McIlroy via Creative Commons)
Sometimes known as the Twelve Pins, this arc of small mountains skirts the southern edge
of Connemara National Park, and its many trails are ideal for day hikes. The mountains
offer breathtaking views of Lough Inaugh. There's also a restaurant nearby called the
Twelve Bens, which offers some of the region's best seafood (though it's a hair outside the
price range of the average backpacker).
Just north of Connemara, in the southern reaches of County Mayo, you'll find Clew Bay,
a small inlet with hundreds of sunken drumlins , tiny islands undu-lating up from under-
water roots. These islands are the cousins of the low hills surrounding the bay, and create
spec-tacular views. Clew Bay is especially popular for sea kayaking - since most of the
islands are uninhabited, and entirely undeveloped, they make a perfect destination for ex-
ploring and picnicking.