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Our Favourite Islands Off the Coast of Ireland

These islands off the coast of Ireland are our must-see favourites.

While visiting Ireland’s islands, you can look forward to a warm welcome and a window onto a more traditional way of life.

The Skellig Islands

Scenic view from Skellig Michael's beehive huts towards Little SkelligSkellig Micheal is located 12km off the coast of Kerry. The island is home to a ruined monastic settlement, dating from the 6th century.

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Skellig Michael remained inhabited until roughly the 13th century. The stone beehive huts built and used by monks can still be seen today.

Vagabond guest Balint Pato takes a quick selfie (with passing seagull) at the beehive huts on top of Skellig Michael, with Little Skellig in the background

You can visit Skellig Michael with Vagabond Tours on our 12 Day Giant Irish Adventure Tour

12 Day Giant Irish Adventure Tour

Garnish Island

Driftwooder guest Donna Atwood's picture of Garnish Island Gardens

Garnish Island enjoys a warm microclimate due to its sheltered harbour location in West Cork. Exotic plants flourish in the Italianate gardens here.

On the short boat trip to Garnish Island, keep your eyes peeled for cheeky harbour seals.

Driftwood guest Gene Goff captures the twilight at Glengarriff in West Cork

Explore Garnish Island’s beautifully landscaped gardens on our Driftwood Tours.

The Aran Islands

Aerial view of patchwork fields and dry stone walls on one of the Aran islands, Ireland

The Aran Islands are a group of three islands off the coast of Ireland. Inis Mór, Inis Meain and Inis Oírr are all reachable by ferry.

Aran culture has been a source of inspiration for artists throughout the years. J.M. Synge famously wrote about the Aran islands in the early 20th century.

Our tours don’t visit the Blasket islands. We may be able to accommodate you on our private tours. Contact us on for more details.

The Blaskets

Vagabond guests pose with the Blasket Islands in the background

The Blaskets are a group of tiny islands off the coast of Ireland.

Today, the islands are uninhabited. Harsh living conditions forced the evacuation of the Blaskets in 1953.

Many islanders emigrated. Interestingly, in the USA, Blasket islanders congregated mainly in Massachusetts, around the Hartford area.

Interested in tracing your Blasket roots while in Ireland? A visit to the excellent Blasket Centre on Slea Head in Dingle is a must.

Scattery Island

Scattery is another great island off the coast of Ireland.

After a short boat trip, get a guided tour of historical ruins, cute cottages and a round tower.

Visit Scattery Island exclusively on our 7 Day Irish Castles and Kingdoms Tour.

7 Day Irish Castles & Kingdoms Tour

Rathlin Island

Abandonded cottage at Usher Point on Rathlin Island off the Antrim coast, Ireland

Rathlin Island is visible offshore as you tour the stunning Causeway Coastal Route in Northern Ireland.

Unlike many islands off the coast of Ireland, historic Rathlin is still inhabited (population: 154 people).

Rathlin Island lighthouse in dense fog

Rathlin Island an important bird sanctuary and is home to interesting archaeological features.

Visit Ireland’s Causeway Coast on our most off the beaten track tour: 7 Day Vagabond Magnetic North Adventure Tour

7 Day Vagabond Magnetic North Adventure Tour

Saltee Islands

Scenic blue ocean and sea cliffs on the Saltee islands

You don’t have to visit the Wild Atlantic Way to see beautiful islands off the coast of Ireland!

Lying just off Ireland’s southeastern tip, the rugged and uninhabited Saltee Islands play host to important seabird colonies and fishing grounds.

Ireland’s Ancient East has its share of stunning vistas. Check them out in our dedicated blog post.

Stunning Photos of Ireland’s Ancient East

Ireland’s Eye

Boat and lighthouse in Howth harbour with Ireland's Eye in the background

Back in Dublin after your tour? Craving more islands off the coast of Ireland?

A scenic coastal train ride brings you to Howth – a fishing village on a peninsula in Dublin Bay.

From Howth, you can take a very short boat trip to Ireland’s Eye. This tiny island has its own little beach, nesting seabirds and fantastic maritime views.

After your trip, don’t miss tasting fresh seafood on the pier in Howth!

Find more insider tips on what to do in Dublin

Non Touristy Things to Do in Dublin

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