Connemara (Irish: Conamara pronounced [kɔnˠamˠaɾˠa]) is a district in the west of Ireland, the limits of which are not well defined. Some [ who? ] Define it to be the land contained by Killary Harbour, the Maam Valley, Lough Corrib (as far as Moycullen); a line from there to the sea at Barna, and the Atlantic Ocean. The historical territory Connemara, as defined in the 17th century historian Ruaidhrí Ó Flaithbheartaigh in his book vest or H-Iar Connaught , was coextensive Barony Ballynahinch, this is a broad peninsula extending from Killary hamnpå northern to Kilkieran Bay South. The border runs north along the spine of the mountains Maumturk then along a series of small rivers and over mountain west of Maam Cross for eventually Invermore course of the river before meeting the sea west of Ros Muc peninsula.


EtymologiTermen Connemara is the northern part of County Galway west of Lough Corrib. [1] It is also used to describe the Gaeltacht (Irish speaking areas) of western County Galway, although it is argued that this is too inaccurate because some of these areas located outside the traditional boundary of Connemara. [ citation needed ] Some [ who? ] also claims that it is not correct to say that Connemara’s eastern boundary ends around Barna just [vague ] in the outskirts of Galway City, or at Maam Cross. [ citation needed ]

“Connemara” derives from the tribal name Conmacne Mara , who has been appointed a branch of Conmacne, an early tribal group had a number of branches in different parts of Connacht. Because this particular branch of Conmacne lived by the sea, became the so-called Conmacne Mara. (Irish Sea is muir , genitive mara , hence the “sea”.) The area in the eastern part of what is now called Connemara Delbhna Tír DHA Locha.


Green means Joyce Country, with light green shows the greatest extent defined; Red indicates Connemara, [ citation needed ] with pink shows the greatest defined [ citation needed ] scope (excluding those who consider somewhere west of the Corrib be in Connemara)

Connemara Coast consists of several penisulas.The peninsula Iorras Ainbhtheach (sometimes corrupted to Iorras Aithneach) to the south is the largest and includes the villages of Carna and Kilkieran. Peninsula Errismore consists of the area west of the village of Ballyconneely. Errisbeg peninsula lies south of the village of Roundstone. The Errislannan peninsula just south of the town of Clifden. Islands in Kingstown, Coolacloy, Aughrus, Cleggan and Renvyle are in the North West Connemara. Of the many islands off the coast of Connemara, Inishbofin is the largest; other islands include Omey, Inishark, High Island, Friars Island, Feenish and Maínis.

[2] Connemara is in territory Iar Connaught , “West Connaught,” which is the part of County Galway west of Lough Corrib. Connemara traditionally divided into North Connemara and South Connemara. The mountains of the Twelve Bens and Owenglin River, which flows into the sea at a Clochán / Clifden, marked the boundary between the two parts. Connemara is bounded on the west, south and north by the Atlantic Ocean. Connemara land border with the rest of County Galway is marked [ citation needed ] of Invermore River otherwise known as Inbhear Mór [3] (which flows into the northern Kilkieran Bay), Loch Oorid (which is a few miles west of Maam Cross) and the western spine Maumturks of the mountains. In the northern part of the mountains meet the sea border at Killary, a few miles west omLeenaun.

Connemara is composed of the Catholic parishes of Carna, Clifden (Omey and Ballindoon), Ballynakill, Roundstone and Inishbofin. [ Citation needed ] The area contains the civil parishes in Moyrus, Ballynakill, Omey, Ballindoon and Inishbofin (the last parish was for a time part of territory of the Clann Uí Mháille, O Malley of the territory Umhall, County Mayo.)


The Ó Cadhla (Kealy) clan were the rulers of Connemara up until the 13th century, when they were expelled by Ó Flaithbertaighs. The latter had fled to Iar Connacht from Maigh Seola during the English invasion of Connacht in the early 13th century.

Like Ó Cadhla clan, Mac Conghaile (Conneely) clan was a branch of Conmhaicne Mara. [ Citation needed ] Comedian Billy Connolly visiting Connemara, looking for their ancestors during their 2002 World Tour in England, Ireland and Wales series.

The largest town in Connemara is Clifden. The area around the town is rich with megalithic tombs. The famous “green Connemara marble” found outcropping along a line between Stream and Lissoughter. It was a trade tax that is used by the inhabitants in prehistoric times. There continues to be of great value today. It is available in large dimensional sheets suitable for buildings, and for smaller pieces of jewelry. It is used for hanging Scout Ireland Chief Scout Award, the highest award in the Irish scouting.

The first flight across the Atlantic, led by Alcock and Brown landed in Clifden, 1919. [4]


Connemara reached by Bus Eireann and Citylink bus services. From 1895 to 1935 it was served by the Midland Great Western Railway branch that is connected Galway City to Clifden. The railway is still visible on the N59. [Where? ] [ Citation needed ]

A popular alternative route is the coastal road on the R336 from Galway City.This road is also known as the Connemara Loop consists of a 45 km drive where you can see the landscape and nature in Connemara.

Aer Aran Islands serve the Aran Islands from Connemara airport in south Connemara also known as Aerfort na Minna.


The population of Connemara is 32.000. There are between 20.000 to 24.000 native Irish speakers in the region makes it the largest Irish-speaking Gaeltacht.

The enumeration district with the Irish speakers throughout Ireland as a proportion of the population can be seen in the South Connemara area.

Most Irish speakers are of school age (5-19 years). [5]

Notable towns and villages

  • Barna – ( Bearna )
  • Ballyconneely – ( Ballyconnelly / Baile Mhic Connolly )
  • Ballynahinch – ( Baile na hInse )
  • Carna – ( Carna )
  • Carraroe – ( Carraroe )
  • Claddaghduff – ( Claddaghduff )
  • Cleggan – ( The Skull )
  • Clifden – ( Clifden )
  • Inverin – ( Indreabhán )
  • Kilkerren – ( Campbeltown )
  • Leenaun – ( An Lionán / Leenane )
  • Letter – ( Letterfrack )
  • Letter – ( Leitir moir )
  • Lettermullen – ( Lettermullen )
  • Maum – ( Chart MAM , even ‘Maam’)
  • Oughterard – ( Oughterard )
  • Recess – ( Series Dirty ) [6]
  • Renvyle – ( Renville )
  • Rosmuc – ( Ros Muc )
  • Roundstone – ( Cloch na RON )
  • Spiddal – ( The Spittal )

Sheet islands

  • Omey Island – ( contest )
  • Inishbofin – ( Inis Bó Finne ) has been home to fishermen, farmers, exiled monks and fugitive pirates in over 6,000 years, and today the island supports a population of 200 full-time residents

other uses

  • French singer Michel Sardou had an international hit with the song “Les Lacs You Connemara” in 1981.
  • The Irish drinking song “The Hills of Connemara” has been recorded and performed by a number of Irish and Celtic-themed bands.
  • Poet Carl Sandburg’s home of 22 years in Flat Rock, North Carolina, which is now a national monument, is named after the Connemara region.
  • Conamara Chaos is a region of chaotic terrain on Jupiter’s moon Europa.
  • Connemara pony is a breed native to the region.
  • Connemara is also the name of a brand of Irish whiskey produced at the Cooley Distillery.

annalistic references

  • 807. A slaughter was made of Conmaicni by foreigners.

Notable people associated with Connemara

  • John Ford, American film director and winner of four Academy Awards, whose real name was Sean O’Feeney, was the son of John Augustine Feeney from Spiddal, and directed the classic film The Quiet Man in nearby Cong, County Mayo.
  • Máire Geoghegan-Quinn is an Irish politician and former EU commissioner for research, innovation and science was born in Carna.
  • Richard Martin, MP, known as “Humanity Dick”, was born in Ballynahinch Castle Ballynahinch and represented Galway in the house.
  • Michael Morris, 3rd Baron Killanin, was president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), and lived at the family seat in Spiddal.
  • Patrick Nee, Irish-born American gangster in South Boston, a member of Mullen Gang and employees to the Irish American gangster Whitey Bulger.
  • Máirtín Ó Cadhain was one of the most prominent Irish language writers of the 20th century, and wrote the classic Irish Cré na Cille, was born in Connemara.
  • Peter O’Toole, the noted actor of stage and screen, who achieved the status in 1962 playing TE Lawrence in Lawrence of Arabia , was born in Connemara in 1932, according to accounts of his life.
  • Pádraig Pearse who was one of the leaders of the Easter Rising in 1916, owned a cottage in Rosmuc, where he spent his summers learning the Irish language and writing.
  • Maharaja Jam Sahib of Nawanagar, an Indian prince and cricketer, was the first head of state to make an official visit to the newly formed Irish Free State, bought Ballynahinch Castle estate and visited the area every year until his death in 1932.
  • Tim Robinson, a cartographer, has lived many years in Connemara and published books on the area.
  • Gráinne Seoige, the Irish TV presenter and journalist, who has worked for TG4, RTÉ, SKY and BBC, born in Spiddal.
  • Máirtín Thornton was a heavyweight boxer, nicknamed “Connemara CHRUSHER”, he was punching Irish heavyweight in 1943, and Bruce Woodcock fought for the British heavyweight title in 1945.
  • Ludwig Wittgenstein, an Austrian philosopher, was a temporary resident, for a few months in 1948, at Rosroe of Killary Harbour.
  • Lord Ismay, chairman of the White Star Line, which owned Titanic, lived part of his later life in his lodge in Connemara. Ismay was aboard the Titanic when it sank but was one of the survivors. [7]
  • Sean Mannion, a professional boxer who boxed in Massachusetts and fought for the WBA, was born in Rosmuc.

See also

  • Islands Area
  • Joyce Country
  • Alcock and Brown first non-stop flight across the Atlantic Ocean crashed near Clifden
  • Connacht Irish
  • Connemara Heritage & History Centre
  • Connemara National Park
  • Lough Corrib
  • The Twelve Pins and Maumturks mountain
  • The Western Way (Long distance tracks)
  • The Connemara Pony
  • Wild Atlantic Way


  • A Chorographical Description of the West or H-Iar Connaught written AD 1684 by Roderic O’Flaherty ESQ with notes and illustrations of James Hardiman MRIA, Irish Archaeological Society, in 1846.
  1. Jump up ^ “Connemara Ireland, to see in Connemara, the map of Connemara Loop, things to do and beaches.”. 04/13/2016.
  2. Jump up ^ “History”. Go Connemara. Pulled 04/13/2016.
  3. Jump up ^ “Full Result”. Pulled 04/13/2016.
  4. Jump up ^ “Captain John Alcock and Lieutenant Arthur Whitten Brown.” Pulled 04/14/2016.
  5. Jump up ^ “Diversity Ethnicity Languages” (PDF). Irish Census. 2011.Retrieved April 13, 2016.
  6. Jump up ^ Ordnance Survey of Ireland map 44 spell it Sraith Salach .
  7. Jump up ^ “Bruce Ismay, 74, the Titanic survivors. Ex-director of the White Star Line, who retired after the Sea Tragedy dies in London. ” The New York Times . October 19, 1937. Joseph Bruce Ismay, former chairman of the White Star Line and a survivor of the Titanic disaster in 1912, died here last night. He was 74 years old.