Looking for things to do in Westport? You’ve landed in the right place!
Ready for some colour? Westport’s got bags of the stuff. Oh, and it’s got a ton of character, history, outdoor adventures and fine places for a pint too.
Named ‘the best place to live in Ireland’ back in 2012 by the Irish Times, this vibrant town on the Mayo coast has built on that recognition ever since.
Whether you’re visiting in the depths of winter or the height of summer, here’s 11 of the best things to do in Westport:
The best things to do in Westport, Ireland
The lively little town of Westport is home to a handful of the best things to do in Mayo. It’s also a stone’s throw from many of the county’s top attractions.
In the first section of this guide, you’ll discover what to do in Westport. In the second section, you’ll find things to do near Westport (within reasonable driving distance).
1. Cycle the Great Western Greenway
Take in some of the West of Ireland’s most gorgeous scenery at your own pace on the Great Western Greenway.
Following part of the old Midlands Great Western Railway route that closed in 1937, it’s now become a 43km cycle trail that meanders its way through Mayo from Westport to Achill.
Free from the sound of droning traffic and containing only a few gentle inclines for any inexperienced cyclists, it’s a perfect slice of escapism (and exercise!).
Looking for a unique place to stay? In our Airbnb Westport guide, you’ll discover 11 gorgeous places to stay near the Greenway!
2. Visit Westport Adventure Park
Ever tried to play soccer while encased inside a 1.5m inflatable bubble? Yes, it’s not a conventional way of playing ‘the beautiful game’ but Westport Adventure Park is all about having fun and getting stuck into lively activities.
There’s also assault courses, paintballing, zorb wars and the new game Splatball – similar to paintball but with less impact from lower velocity guns.
Only a 15-minute drive from town, it’s a great spot for a stag weekend activity too. This is a handy place to head if you’re looking for things to do in Westport with a group.
3. Grab a post-adventure pint and some live music at Matt Molloy’s
I’ll go out on a limb here and say that you’ll probably be treated to some pretty decent music should you stop by for a pint at legendary trad musician Matt Molloy’s bar.
In fact, they play live music here 7 nights a week so you might be lucky enough to catch the man himself joining in one of the sessions.
There are some great spots for a creamy pint in Westport but Molloy’s is the one to seek out first (Toby’s Bar is a great shout if you’re after a quieter spot).
Traveller tip: Kicking back with live music at Matt’s is one of the more popular things to do in Westport amongst visiting tourists, which means it can be tough to nab a seat. Try and get in early.
4. Head for a stroll around Westport House & Grounds
Almost 300 years-old, the beautiful Westport House is one of Ireland’s finest heritage attractions and just one visit will tell you why.
As well as the 30 ornate rooms on show and the six permanent exhibitions, it’s the stunning parkland setting that really sets it apart.
Its riverside location sits amid manicured gardens and offers incredible views overlooking Clew Bay and up towards Croagh Patrick – Ireland’s Holy Mountain.
5. Make your belly happy at An Port Mór Restaurant
In case you didn’t know, it’s all about the ingredients. And while An Port Mór shies away from calling itself ‘fine dining’, the quality of the seasonal produce and local West of Ireland ingredients used here are of the highest quality.
Its bright red entrance is unmissable, as is the food, served up by award-winning head chef Frankie Mallon.
He says his style is ‘rustic meets quirky’ and you can be the judge of that by ordering one of his signature creations such as Crab Cakes in a Seaweed Polenta.
Discover loads more mighty places to eat in our guide to 11 of the best restaurants in Westport (from cheap eats to fine dining).
6. Coastal drives (perfect for those of you looking for things to do in Westport when it’s raining)
Cycling is great but there are some deadly drives to be found around Westport too and you’d be foolish to miss out on them.
So, jump in the car and get to it! A slow drive up to Achill Sound from Westport takes in some gorgeous rolling scenery while passing by the island-speckled Clew Bay with its array of serene beaches.
Head off in the direction of Keem Bay and you’ll be treated to some of the best views in the west!
Drive back to towards Westport in the late afternoon/early evening for some stunning photo opportunities when the sun starts to go down beneath the bay.
7. Visit Pirate Adventure Park (one of the best things to do in Westport with kids)
What kid doesn’t like pirates? If you’re looking for a perfect family day out, then you could do a lot worse than Westport’s award-winning Pirate Adventure Park.
With activities including a mini zip line, a vortex tunnel, an inflatable obstacle course and, of course, a swinging pirate ship, there are loads to keep the little ones entertained for a few hours.
It’s also only a stone’s throw from Westport House if you want to combine the two in one visit.
8. Try your hand at watersports
They’re a dab hand at the old adventure game in Westport and if you like getting out of your comfort zone then watersports are one of the top things to do here.
The Blueway is a network of water trails where you’ll have the opportunity to experience a range of water-based activities.
Zip up your wetsuit and choose from snorkelling, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding and (if your fitness won’t let you down) the action-packed ‘coasteering’. More info here.
Things to do near Westport
OK, so we’ve tackled what to do in Westport, it’s time to take a look at the best places to visit nearby, within reasonable driving distance.
Below, you’ll find hike, walks and plenty more. Dive on in!
1. Climb Croagh Patrick
Got your hiking boots ready? The epic pyramid-like figure of Croagh Patrick looms over Westport and no trip here would be complete without climbing Ireland’s ‘Holy Mountain’.
At a height of 2510 ft above sea-level, this is no simple stroll though so don’t take it lightly. It should take around two hours to climb to the summit but the views when you reach the top are epic.
On a pilgrimage or not, the climb is an essential thing to do in Westport. Here’s a full guide to the Croagh Patrick hike to follow.
2. Take a spin out to Achill Island
Have you ever been to Keem Bay? If not, you’re in for a treat! This glorious little corner of the Wild Atlantic Way is home to one of the best beaches in the land.
One glance at its gorgeous compact beach, turquoise waters and its green horseshoe-shaped cliffs and you’ll be furiously asking why you’ve never been here before!
That’s just one reason to take a spin out to Achill Island. You could also hike up to see the highest sea cliffs in Ireland or head for a paddle at Keel Beach.
3. Visit one of the many mighty beaches at Mulranny
Another of Mayo’s hidden treasures, Mulranny’s tranquil beaches offer striking panoramic views over scenic Clew Bay.
A 35-minute drive from Westport, there’s plenty of activities to get stuck into once you arrive, including hiking, fishing and golf.
But really Mulranny is all about the beaches and gorgeous landscape around them. Bring your camera and a few cans and take it all in.
What to do in Westport: what have we missed?
I’m sure that we’ve unintentionally left out some great things to do in Westport in the guide above.
If you have somewhere or something to recommend, let me know below.