Nestled between Achill’s Deserted Village at the foot of Slievemore Mountain and Keel Beach lies the Achill Experience , Achill’s first visitor centre and Mayo’s first Aquarium. The centre has something for all ages, with two themed salt water tanks and an open touch tank so visitors can get close to the action with the local sea life!
Local Aquarist Tom Honeyman is on hand to impart all his local knowledge to each and every visitor on the types of fish in the aquarium. His top tip? “Watch out for the scallops, you might get a little surprise.”
The Experience also holds a re-built Deserted Village Boley House, common to Achill throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, it allows visitors to step back in time to the famine era.
After seeing the house and learning about the history of the village, visitors can then wander through the ruins of the deserted village (just 1KM away) and get a sense of the lives those people who lived there.
The Achill Experience charts the stories of many parts of Achill’s history and presents them in snippets of stories adorning the walls of the centre to allow the visitors soak up as much information as possible on the parish’s history.
Lastly it brings together all of the parish history with a digital twist – visitors can rent Apple iPad Air devices where the parish history is pre-loaded and available off line – the central character guiding visitors around the island is Lorcan the lamb!
It is very easy to spend days enjoying Achill – often described as “Heaven on Earth” – you can certainly spend a day enjoying the Achill Experience, at your own pace in the main visitor centre or around the island.
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