Looking to see the sights and sounds of the Banshee?

What’s that whispering on the wind in the west of Ireland? Oh, it’s only all the recent Oscar buzz from the USA and if twee 90’s Irish movies such as “Into the West” and “Far and Away” didn’t put the Wild Atlantic Way on the international cinematic map, the new film by Martin McDonagh certainly will! Featuring Ireland's favourite Hollywood dream team Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson “The Banshees of Inisherin” and its stunning scenery are a must-see while visiting Ireland.

Luckily for you, Westport is a mere hop, skip and a jump away from where the movie was located, on Achill Island. Achill is home not only to breathtaking scenery, a beautiful and tragic history, and some of the best summer memories you’ll ever make, but it now also boasts hotly-tipped Oscar filming locations. Move over Northern Ireland and Game of Thrones, the west is coming for your crown.

Martin McDonagh & Colin Farrell on set of Banshees of Inisherin
Martin McDonagh & Colin Farrell on set of Banshees of Inisherin

Banshees Locations Tour

Take A Tour

Tour the epic locations where “The Banshees of Inisherin” was filmed, taking in some stunning views and the freshest island air known to man as you do so (there’s nowhere fresher than an island off an island). Achill Tourism Board has pulled together a handy list of filming locations so you can do a self-guided Banshees trail, complete with a map of all the locations, and “before and after” photos of where sets were built so filming could take place.

Achill Coaches who drove all the extras and met the cast do pickups from Westport hotels before heading out to tour the island. Visitors on the coach tour will hear first-hand stories of the filming of the movie, where locals were drafted in as extras and fixers for the production crew.

Get There on the Greenway

Cycle the Great Western Greenway, a bike route which follows the path of the old railway line that connected Westport to Achill. There are lots of amazing stops along the way, and you can take the easy way out and get a shuttle bus either from Westport to Achill and cycle back, or do it the other way round (this is the less windy option!).

Surf in the wild Atlantic

Get the adrenaline pumping with a surf lesson on Achill Island’s Keel Beach. Mayo has loads of great surf spots, but Achill is special, and quite off the beaten track for surf enthusiasts. Novice surfers can get the lay of the land (or sea) with Soundwave Surf School, located right on the beach at Keel. If you’re keen on other water-based adventures, head to the gang at Achill Surf for kayaking, climbing and coasteering sessions.

Hiking the film locations

Achill is home to Ireland’s highest sea cliffs, Croaghaun. A steep hike, this is not for the faint-hearted, but those looking for a short, sharp shock to the system can head straight up from Keem Beach towards the lookout hut to climb Slievemore. Check out our list of the best hikes and walks around Westport here.

Banshees set by @peter_and_loki via Instagram
JJ Devine's pub on the set of Banshees of Inisherin by @peter_and_loki via Instagram

Where to stay

The buzzing town of Westport is a beautiful 1hr drive along the coast to Achill Island. The town is famous for great food, lively nightlife and excellent accommodation. From quaint boutique guest houses to quayside apartments, from camping to luxury hotels, Westport has it all. We’ve already done the leg work for you and compiled all of your options here, in one handy place. The Achill Island Day Tour coach will pick you up directly from your hotel and drop you off right at your door.

Downtown Westport Co. Mayo

How to get here

Westport is blessed with various airports not too far away. Direct flights from the USA to Shannon Airport (2.5hrs drive) are probably the most convenient for any Americans wanting to jump through the big screen and explore our green shores. Ireland West Airport (Knock) is only 50 minutes away from Westport, and is served by destinations all over Europe and the British Isles. Then of course there is Dublin Airport, and international airport in our fair capital, that dirty ol’ town. There is a direct train service between Dublin’s Heuston Station and Westport that has multiple departures every day. And of course, there’s no better way to get stuck into some serious sightseeing than on a great Irish road trip. Car rental is available at all airports.

Shannon Airport with direct flights from the USA