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Seaweed foraging is an up-and-coming popular excursion among nature enthusiasts looking to explore the seaside. Seaweed has always held an economical significance in Connemara and the Aran Islands and has a long history of using it as a food source and a fertiliser in places such as the Aran Islands. There are many types of seaweed available along the Connemara and Aran Island coastline that are used for food, medical and beauty products today.
Take a walk through the unique but spectacular Connemara Boglands. A bog is a freshwater wetland of soft, spongy ground consisting mainly of partially decayed plant matter called peat. Connemara was intrinsically linked to the boglands as peat was the only source of fuel for many people. There is a lot of back-breaking work involved in cutting, footing, gathering and saving turf(dried out peat sods) and traditionally, the whole family were called upon to work on the bog. There are no boglands on the Aran Islands, however, Connemara people used to sail out to the islands on Hookers to trade turf.
Take a trip on a unique Galway Hooker traditional wooden boat around the scenic and rugged Connemara coast along the magnificent Wild Atlantic Way. The hooker, a sailboat unique to Galway is a historical Connemara symbol. Hookers played an important role in the economy of the coastal communities in Connemara. They were used for fishing and carrying cargoes of turf, livestock, general supplies, lime, poitín(an illegal alcohol) and seaweed.
The Gaeltacht has a central role to play in the learning of Irish. Learners of Irish flock to Connemara and the Aran Islands year after year recognising it as a rich source in which to learn and practise Irish, as Irish can be heard in all aspects of daily life. Attending Gaeltacht courses allows learners and speakers to immerse themselves in Irish and to enrich and develop their vocabulary. There are a vast range of courses available in the Connemara Gaeltacht and the Aran Islands for adults and teenagers alike.
Connemara and the Aran Islands along the western seaboard is the richest region in the country for traditional music and dance. Whether you’re a musician or enthusiast there are plenty of opportunities to get involved in the vibrant world of traditional Irish music. There is an abundance of workshops, summer schools, music festivals, classes and live music sessions throughout the region.