Westport town was designed by James Wyatt in 1780, in a Georgian Architectural Style. The town layout follows medieval principles of 13th century urban design featuring landmarks of the Carrowbeg River, tree lined malls, pretty colourful streets, iconic monuments of the Clock and the Octagon as well as the nearby Westport House & Pirate Adventure Park.
The famous pilgrimage mountain of Croagh Patrick, known locally as "the Reek", lies some 10 km west of the town near the villages of Murrisk and Lecanvey. The mountain offers a striking backdrop to the town. The church on the summit can just be made out with the naked eye from Westport.
Westport is nestled around the shores of Clew Bay which hosts 365 islands and inlets off (an island for each day of the year!). The bay is best seen from the summit of Croagh Patrick on a clear day or on the main approach to Westport via the N4 Castlebar Road.
Westport has an extensive awards portfolio, in recent months, not only was Westport crowned The Best Place to Live in Ireland by The Irish Times, it was also accredited as Ireland’s Tidiest Large Town 2012, Ireland’s Best Kept Large Town 2012 and the Retail Excellence Best Town in Ireland!
The Great Western Greenway is a recent addition to Westport attractions which features 42km of an off road cycling and walking trail which captures some of the most breathtaking views of Clew Bay and dramatic mountain scenery along the renowned Westport to Achill railway which was closed in 1937. The Greenway passes through picturesque villages of Newport and Mulranny where services and collection points area available. More information can be found at www.greenway.ie
Westport is home to Westport House & Gardens which was once was home to the pirate chief Grace O'Malley, in the mid-to-late 16th century. The house stands today as Ireland’s most beautiful historic home and is a popular visitor attraction. The magnificent ‘big house’ is now owned and operated by The Browne Family, direct descendants of Grace O’Malley. The House has an abundance of original artefacts, artwork and treasures that will fascinate all culture-vultures with a total of 30 rooms on show. The story of the people behind the house is equally fascinating as the house itself with a history of pirates, slave emancipators and pioneers; it couldn’t be anything but riveting! For over 300 years, the Browne’s have worked passionately to preserve this beautiful piece of Irish heritage and the story of this commitment is told throughout the house in guided and self-guided tours, 5 permanent exhibitions and reading materials.
For more detailed information on Westport, the surrounding areas as well as extensive information on things to do in the area check out www.destinationwestport.com