Newport is a small picturesque town located on the north-east corner of Clew Bay. A beautiful feature of the town is its seven-arch viaduct, built in 1892 to carry the Westport to Achill railway line. The arch has now been restored, and looks especially impressive at night, when floodlit. Newport is also the site of a number of very beautiful buildings. One of these is St Patrick's Catholic Church, built in 1914 in the Irish Romanesque Style. The doorway at the entrance is modelled on the one in Clonfert Cathedral in Galway
, and the stained-glass window at the East is by famous artist Harry Clarke.
Newport nestles on the shore of beautiful Clew Bay, famous for its 365 islands. That’s one for every day of the year, or enough adventure to last a lifetime. The Black Oak River flows through the centre of Newport town and merges with the sea to form a very fine protected harbour, who’s quays are lined with colourful fishing trawlers of great age. Many of them look as if they will never make it out onto the high seas again. And high above them the great arched Newport sandstone railway bridge spans the valley, its steam locomotives now forever silent, and its genteel Victorian travellers long gone. One portion of the town adjacent to the railway line has been rebuilt in an unusually sympathetic and well-thought-out style. Well done! And we catch sight of an unusually grand hotel through a gateway and resolve to spend more time in beautiful Newport.
Newport stands at the entrance to the Bangor Trail, now forming part of the Great Western Greenway, a 43.5km cycling and walking route which follows the line of the famous Great Western Midlands Railway, which closed in 1937. Its development has been made possible by agreement with local landowners who have allowed access through their lands. The route offers gentle gradients and some of the most idyllic scenery in the West of Ireland. It forms part of the National Cycle Network and it is the longest off-road cycling experience in the country. Whether you wish to build the Greenway into a long-range cycling itinerary, or simply meander a few hundred yards along the old railway route, it is a delightful experience and one which should not be missed.
Near Newport is the Salmon Research Visitor Centre located at Furnace which tells the unique story of the Salmon - King of the Fish. Travelling from Newport to Mulranny
you can visit Letterkeen Forest, where a 3500 year-old Bronze Age burial site was discovered.
How to get to Newport
By bus, or car. Bus Eireann Routes 440 provides a service from Knock Airport, via Westport, to Newport. Alternatively follow the N59 northwards from Westport directly to Newport.
Where to stay in Newport
Newport has fine selection of places to stay including hotels, hostels, self-catering holiday homes, guesthouses and B&B's.
Book Newport Accommodation
Newport is surrounded by beautiful coastal towns. Don't miss Mulranny and Achill
if you are travelling north, and Westport, and Croagh Patrick, if you are travelling south.
Things to do in Newport
- Walk or cycle the Greenway. Cross the high arched railway bridge and remember Newport as it was in the old days.
- Simply meander around the village, and the river harbour. Enjoy!
- Spend a day fishing at Newport House. The house is famous as a fishing centre and holds the fishing rights to the internationally renowned Newport River (fly fishing only) with 8 miles of river (both banks) and Lough Beltra West – 3 miles by 1 mile. The fishery holds a healthy stock of Spring Salmon, Grilse and still some Seatrout and all of the fish are wild.
- The Burrishoole fishery is comprised of a series of fresh and brackish water loughs. It’s owned and run by the Marine Institute and is one of Ireland’s premier Lough fisheries for salmon. Fishing for wild salmon is on a catch and release basis and all wild salmon must be carefully returned alive to the water. A replacement ranched Salmon of equivalent size will be provided on request.
- We ate in the Blue Bicycle Tea Rooms, located on Main Street, Newport, central to the Great Western Greenway. The Blue Bicycle Tea Rooms with vintage old worlde atmosphere serves all homemade fare on china tea sets. Homemade scones, layered fresh cream and strawberry cakes, walnut and coffee cake, homemade apple and almond pie. Homemade vegetable soup, salads, cheese, paninis and sandwiches. Served with Blue Bicycle in house pesto, salad dressing and Blue Bicycle pickled cucumber. All ingredients are locally sourced, organic and home grown. Excellent lunch, but we are convinced that changing its name to the “Pink Bicycle Tea Rooms” would double its custom.