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Rosses Point

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Rosses Point is a village in County Sligo with a population of 883 in 2016. It's a fishing village at the outflow of Sligo Bay, and "Ross" means the peninsula between that and Drumcliffe Bay further north. It's 8 km west of Sligo and in the 19th century became a holiday resort, similar to Strandhill facing it across the estuary.

Get in

See Sligo for long-distance routes by road or rail. By car follow N4 to Sligo then R291 northwest for 8 km along the coast.

Bus S2 follows the coast from Strandhill north of the estuary to Sligo bus and railway station, and continues west via city centre, the hospital, Institute of Technology and Ballincar (Radisson Hotel), taking 20 min from the bus station to Rosses Point. It runs hourly, daily; adult fare is about €3 cash, and cheaper by Leap Card.

A cycleway connects Sligo and Rosses Point.

Get around

Rosses Point is a small village and is easy to get around on foot or by bike.

See

  • Waiting on Shore is a mawkish statue near the lifeboat station. She could be waiting a while.
  • Elsinore House is a sorry ruin, with only the ivy holding together the masonry. The Yeats family spent summer holidays here and it features in the writings of William (WB Yeats) and the paintings of his brother Jack. William is buried 5 km east at Drumcliffe "under bare Ben Bulben's head": see Sligo for details but you can get there without backtracking into town, via the narrow lanes. Very narrow, just hope you don't meet another vehicle.
  • 1 Beaches stretch along the west-facing Atlantic coast. They're not as afflicted by currents as the bay, but they're breezy and exposed to waves. First Beach is the 400 m stretch by the caravan site, with parking, toilets, ramp access, and lifeguards in summer. This strip ends at the headland of Bowmore Point, with its colourful cabin. North of there is slipway access to Second Beach, stretching 1 km to Wren Point, with the golf course behind. This is the main beach for kite-surfing. Third Beach is a lonely place north of Wren Point along the spit to the outflow of Drumcliffe Bay; at low tide you can walk to Lower Rosses lighthouse on its tressle tower. There are salt marshes behind the beach and Benbulbin louring across the estuary. Reach it either from Second Beach or by the lanes north side of the peninsula.
  • 2 The Metal Man is the distinctly camp sailor atop the navigation tower on Perch Rock. Approaching by sea, you should line up his light with that of Oyster Island behind. Once close in, sail where he's pointing (mincing, more like) to be in the safe channel. Erected in 1821, he has an identical twin at Tramore in County Waterford.
  • 3 Oyster Island is farmland, nowadays uninhabited and privately owned, with a lighthouse aligned with the Metal Man. In 1864 a fleet of "oyster pirates" attempted to raid the local oyster beds, and there was a grand set-to with the police, who were out in force to stop them. The pirates were defeated that day, but in the following years overfishing destroyed the Sligo oyster beds.
  • 4 Coney Island can be reached by boat from Rosses Point, but it's tidal so usually you walk or drive across the sands from Strandhill. A few people still live there, heavily outnumbered by rabbits.

Do

  • Second Beach is the place for kite-surfing and wind-surfing; also classic surfing though the waves are modest.
  • 1 Ewings Sea Angling and Boat Charters (Sligo Boat Charters), ☏ +353 86 891 3618. They're mostly about sea-angling. They also do scenic trips around the area for groups, but don't have timetabled walk-up tours; note also that Inishmurray island remains off limits. (updated Sep 2020)
  • 2 County Sligo Golf Club, Greenlands, Rosses Point F91 Y974, ☏ +353 71 917 7134, ✉ info@countysligogolfclub.ie. Links golf club with Championship "Colt" course of 6638 m / 7259 yards par 71, plus nine-hole "Bomore" course of 2758 m / 3034 yards par 35. They also manage the courses at StrandhillEnniscrone and Donegal. 18 holes €200. (updated Sep 2020)
  • Sligo Yacht Club are based at the saltily-named Deadman's Point by First Beach.
  • The Wild Atlantic Way is the motoring route that hugs the coast. See County Sligo for more, but the way is self-evident.
  • The Shanty Festival is held in mid-June, in support of the local lifeboat. The 2020 event was cancelled and the next is probably 11-13 June 2021, tbc.

Buy

  • Bay View Stores is a small supermarket at the east edge of the village, open daily 08:00-20:00.

Eat

  • 1 Austies Bar, Rosses Upper, ☏ +353 71 911 7786. M-Sa 16:00-21:00, Su 12:30-21:00. Well-run restaurant with cosy bar. (updated Sep 2020)
  • 2 The Driftwood, Rosses Point F91 DXT4, ☏ +353 71 931 7070. W-Su 12:00-23:00. Smokehouse restaurant and bar, has accommodation. B&B double €100. (updated Sep 2020)
  • Rose Chinese Restaurant in village centre is open W-M 16:30-23:00, tel +353 71 911 7955.
  • Little Cottage Cafe at the east edge of the village gets good reviews, has vegan options. It's open daily 10:00-17:00.

Drink

  • Drink at Austies, Driftwood or Yeats Hotel. There isn't a stand-alone pub, Harry's Bar has closed down.

Sleep

  • Greenlands Caravan and Camping Park, just west of the golf course, is open April-Sept, +353 71 917 7113. They also run a similar park at Strandhill across the estuary.
  • Driftwood Restaurant has rooms, see Eat.
  • 1 Yeats Country Hotel, Rosses Upper, ☏ +353 71 911 7100. The village's only hotel is a decent place with fitness centre, pool and spa. B&B double €130. (updated Sep 2020)
  • 2 Down Yonder B&B, Rosses Upper F91 DK26, ☏ +353 89 210 3639. Sumptuous B&B on the edge of the golf course earns great reviews. Open all year, seven en suite rooms. No children under 12 or dogs. B&B double €150. (updated Sep 2020)
  • See Sligo for the Radisson Blu Hotel, which you pass on the road out from town to Rosses Point.

Connect

As of Jan 2021, you'll manage a call in Rosses Point with Three or Vodafone, but not 4G, and there's no signal from Eir. There's 5G in Sligo itself and about as far out as the Radisson hotel.

Go next

  • Most routes take you back through Sligo.
  • Donegal Town is just 40 km northeast up the coast.



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