Ballina

Ballina

Ballina is the largest town in Co. Mayo and home of the famous River Moy. The town has an extremely old history dating back to the Stone Age. There are numerous tombs (megaliths) to be found in the area of Ballina and Mayo. Ballina's main claim to fame is its river which is internationally renowned as an exceptional source of salmon. As a result, the town attracts many anglers each season.

During the fishing season, the bridges of Ballina are very busy and the Ridge Pool, a Salmon angler's paradise in the centre of the town, is one of the most famous tourist attractions in Ireland. Such is the abundance of fish in the River Moy, many keen anglers have made their homes nearby. Former manager of the Irish Soccer team and famous angler, Jack Charlton, has a house in the area.

st-muredachs-cathedral.jpg The town has developed not only in size but in location. The early settlement of Ballina was at Ardnaree which is on the east of the river. The visitor can trace this from the ruins of the 15th century Rosserk Friary. During the 18th century, the town developed on the other side of the river and is now a busy commercial and tourist centre. The Moyne Abbey is also definitely worth a visit.

In July each year, the Ballina Street Festival draws visitors from Ireland and further afield. For many, the highlight of the festival is the Heritage day when the town's traders, bar and shop owners transform their shopfronts and doorways into a replica of Victorian times. The streets are lined with stalls selling traditional cuisine and handmade crafts while open air gigs and theatre entertain the visitors and townspeople.

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