Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Travel Sketches, Achill Island, County Mayo, Ireland

The sea view from the Bervie, 09/16/2015, 7" h x  9" w, watercolor on Canson 140lb coldpress, Michael Anderson.
Traveling north along the Wild Atlantic Way in September my wife and I drove through several small picturesque villages including Glengarriff and Adare. Typically the buildings at the town centers are painted in bright colors and occupied by shops, b&b's and pubs. Some consider all the added color as garish gentrification meant to be attractive to tourists. A clear exception is the sparsely populated, stark yet beautiful village of Keel Achill in County Mayo located on Achill Island. A bridge connects the island to the mainland so access is easy but only about 2500 people live there. Sheep roam freely almost everywhere. Most of the buildings in the village are simply whitewashed or abandoned to weather in dull greys amid piles of rubble and lush greenery against a background of rocky cliffs that jut out into the Atlantic. We stayed overnight at the Bervie Guesthouse where the rooms have views of the sea and guests are served tea upon arrival.
The Bervie Guesthouse, 09/17/2015, 7" h x  9" w, watercolor on Canson 140lb coldpress, Michael Anderson. The exterior is trimmed with blue shutters, flowering plants and sea shells.
The Bervie is operated by Liz and John Barrett, life long residents of Achill Island. Liz is descended from a family of hoteliers. She is also a gourmet chef and prepares dinner every evening at the Bervie. Seafood and lamb dishes are specialties. She is a gracious hostess and epitomizes hospitality. m

Snapshot of a view of Keel Achill.
Into the mystic.


  1. Oh my. I try not to envy, but these sketches are just WONDERFUL...I'm so glad you got to go and can share it with us!

  2. Much appreciation for your comment Kate! So nice. m


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