Why Our Town

Things to see and do in Ballyhaunis - (click on the links to find out more)

Take a look at the Churches in Ballyhaunis - there is the local Parish Church of St Patrick which hold mass every day and is a beautiful church to visit.  There is also the Augustinian Abbey of St Mary in the Friary Grounds.  After looking at the Abbey there is a very pleasant walk down by the river which circles the Abbey.  

There is entertainment on in some of the pubs in town every weekend and there are annual events in the town during the year.  

Megaliths, Standing Stones and Ogam Stones

These abound in the area.  There is an Ogam stone opposite the Parish Church in Ballyhaunis in who's reflective surface can be seen a fine reflection of the Church.   Another example of an  Ogam Stone is in the townland of  Island,  on the Knock Road just heading out of Ballyhaunis.  In the centre of a round mound to the E of Knock Road is a stone (known as "Lisvaun") 1.8 metres high and leaning backwards, which has the worn ogam inscriptionCUNALEGIAV� �QUNACANOS.  

Further along the Knock Road at Greenwood there is a Wedge Tomb which carries with it a legend going back to the 3rd Century Warrior, Fionn Mac Cumhail (Finn Mac Cool).  Locally it is known as Diarmuid and Grainne's bed - said to be where they sheltered on one of their nights during their flight from Fionn. There are many versions of this legend but you can read one of them here.

Places to Visit around Ballyhaunis - (click on the links to be taken to the dedicated websites)

Ballyhaunis is in a very central location with many places to visit within a hour's journey.  You will experience the charming narrow, Irish roads with their many twists and turns or there   is an excellent Bus or Train service in the Town.

If you like walking there are some excellent country walks withuin a few minutes drive of Ballyhaunis.  Cloonfad - on the N83 heading South for 6 miles is the host of  Cloonfad Scenic Walks  which are a series of linear walks which take in beautiful laocal countryside.

Travel 7 miles North West of Ballyhaunis and you will come to Knock Marian Shrine .  Today Knock Shrine is an international place of pilgrimage and prayer where over one and a half million pilgrims come every year. The Shrine groundsincorporates five churches, including the Apparition Church, Parish Church/Old Church, Basilica, Blessed Sacrament Chapel and Chapel of Reconciliation. Other facilities include a Religious Books’ Centre, Caravan and Camping Park, Knock House Hotel and Knock Museum. All of these are set in beautiful landscaped gardens of approximately 100 acres creating an atmosphere of peace and tranquillity.

Travel a bit further afield, still going North West and 31 miles from Ballyhaunis and you will come to the award winning National Museum of Ireland - Country Life is located in Turlough Village, 8kms east of Castlebar (on the N5). The Museum is home to the National Folklife Collection which represents traditional life in Ireland throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries. Fascinating artefacts deal with domestic life, agriculture, fishing and hunting, clothing and textiles, furniture and fittings, trades and crafts, transport, sports and leisure and religion. Set in the spectacular grounds of Turlough Park, Castlebar, Co. Mayo the Museum treats visitors to a taste of how our ancestors lived their daily lives, in both difficult and joyful times. The Museum runs programmes for adults, families and schools to raise awareness of the Museum collection and the associated traditional crafts, customs and traditions. The programmes consist of talks, demonstrations and performances as well as hands-on art and craft workshops.

Head 27 miles North of Ballyhaunis and you will step back in time if you visit  Heneghan's Heritage Centre .  Tom Heneghan himself will give you an intersting and colourful history of his family and their heritage.  

31 miles East of Ballyhaunis is the spectacular Strokestown House and Gardens .  A tour of the House give an intimate insight into life in the Big House - both upstairs and Downstairs.  The  Irish Famine Museum  tells a very different story and a walk through the Walled Gardens and Woodlands brings you into the planned splendour of a planned Georgian estate.  Within a short time you will have travelled from Ireland in the 1600's, experiencing the good and bad times and have travelled back to the present day.

Head South for 40 miles and after a lovely drive through the irish Countryside you will reach the scenic Galway Bay.  There are many activites to be found in Galway Bay, from a Gentle Cruise round the Bay to sailing, fishing and even a trip to the Aran Islands.

32 miles South West of Ballyhaunis nestling between the picturesque lakes of Lough Mask and Lough Corrib, sits historic Cong - the village where the famous Quiet Man was filmed.  Take a walk around the village and visit the Quiet Man Pub and Museuam - not to mention the Augustinian Abbey which was founded in the 12th Centruy.  Then maybe eat at Ashford Castle before taking a tour round  Ireland's Lake District.