Fishing, Achill Island in Co. Mayo
Achill is Ireland's largest island and the surrounding Atlantic waters are a fisherman's paradise. Here you will find some of the best sea angling grounds in Europe, offering an extensive variety and size of fish. A number of boat owners offer sea angling trips from Achill on licensed boats.
More than 30 different species of fish have been caught in the waters off Achill, including cod, mackerel, pollock, ling, conger, skate, wrasse, ray, dogfish, thresher, blue shark and porbeagle sharks.
The area has also provided Ireland's two shark records as well as many specimen claims. In 1932 Dr O'Donnel-Brown caught a record 365lb porbeagle shark with rod and line at Keem Bay, constituting a new Irish and British record which still stands. In 1959 a record 206lb blue shark was caught off Achill by J McMonagle. Other exceptional captures in recent years include a 12lb pollack, a 17lb coalfish and 112lb blue shark.
Sea shore and beach angling are also popular at various locations on Achill Island and the Curraun Peninsula. Ocean swells can be dangerous so it is important to wear a life jacket when rock fishing. Maps showing the best shore fishing spots can be obtained locally.
Fresh water fishing in some of the Achill lakes is another option - Keel Lake, Lough Gall and Lough na Mbreac are suitable for trout fishing. A license is required for fresh water fishing on Achill, and this can be purchased from the Achill Tourism office, where fishing rod hire is also available.