Stay on the homestead
In our comfortable and cosy home with fantastic views, our hope is that you will have some time to do nothing but sit and stare at the views or read a book: take the time to recharge your batteries!
We also have great places to sit or stand in the gardens where you can take in the 360-degree views. The boat shed provides a great retreat away from the weather, with enough space for table tennis (or even makeshift badminton!) and a pot-bellied stove over which to tell tall tales. Furthermore, we regularly have traditional wooden boats under repair and refurbishment.
As a project, why not walk over to our small copse and choose an appropriate branch from which to fashion your own walking stick?
Activities from the doorstep
Transported in our safety boat, and subject to tides and weather, we can sometimes provide a short trip across to Dernish Island, offering the peace and tranquillity of ‘get away from it all’ walks and access to a stunning fossil beach facing the full force of the Atlantic.
We provide an assortment of ‘sit on top’ kayaks. From the slipway, the sheltered tidal Grange River channel provides miles of pleasant waters, teeming with wildlife and the seal colony only 400 metres away. Kayaking from the house gives access to Dernish and Conors Islands and to the dunes and glorious sandy two mile long beach at Streedagh – where a number of ships from the Spanish Armada were sunk.
We also provide a few bicycles so you might explore the locality in your own time and at your own pace. Two local rides should easily get you north to Mullaghmore Harbour with the stunning coastal ride past Classiebawn Castle or south to Lissadel House, former home of Countess Markievicz and regularly visited by WB Yeats.
If you wish to arrange a suitable and structured introduction to these activities, we can arrange access local specialist companies who can provide expert tuition, guidance and advanced equipment: Steve and Geraldine, although experienced kayakers found lots to learn with Sligo Kayak. The locally based Wild Atlantic Wheels have the added attraction of electric bikes!
By arrangement, we can also provide safe storage for your own cycles and safe boat launching from our private slipway.
We are also blessed with not one, but two horse riding stables within a mile of the house. They too can provide introductory sessions or longer treks and may be contacted via Island View and Holiday Horse Farm.
Things to see and do within reach of Milk Harbour
Nurturing the body -The west coast is rich in seaweed and the curative powers of a seaweed bath are recommended. There are several locations in the county, such as Voya at Strandhill.
Sheepdogs in training – The internationally renowned and award-winning owner of Atlantic Sheepdogs, Mr Feeney operates locally. As one of the rarer experiences in life, why not book a visit to see his training in action? This provides a fantastic demonstration of the bond between a shepherd, his dogs and the control of sheep. Advance booking is required.
Probably the most powerful writer of the 20th century is buried in the nearby Drumcliffe Church. His headstone reads:
Cast a cold Eye
on Life, on Death.
Horseman, pass by.
For more information visit the ‘Visit Ireland’ site here.
Drumcliffe is a convenient stopping place between Sligo and Milk Harbour on the main road going north – where a visit to the Drumcliffe Tea House and Craft Shop provides a welcome and tasty stopping point.
“Go gather by the humming sea
Some twisted, echo-harbouring shell.
And to its lips thy story tell, And they thy comforters will be”
W B Yeats: The Song of the Happy Shepherd
Renowned worldwide for its traditional crafts, here are just a few locations from which to begin your explorations:
For hand woven unique designs of Donegal tweed, a car trip north via Donegal town and then onwards to St Johns Point will reveal Castle Murray House, St John’s Point. Cindi Graham is a delightful lady and an incredibly skilled weaver.
On the same trip you may choose to visit Killybegs, a thriving fishing port – a great day out!
For unique jewellery designs, much of which is inspired by the landscape and flora of Dernish Island – just across the water from Milk Harbour – visit ‘The Cat and The Moon’ in Sligo town to see the work of Martina Hamilton and her team.
If taking a trip down the county, passing near Knocknarea, see the wonderful Breeogue studio and pottery.
There are also regular markets for local produce and arts/crafts. The two most local are the Rathcormac Artisan Food and Craft Market – visit on Saturdays between 10am and 3pm to watch artists at work; and the Strand Hill People’s Market, which hosts an impressive array of bakers, chefs and artists.
Exploring the Wild Atlantic Way
Milk Harbour sits between Westport to the south and Donegal in the north.The Wild Atlantic Way is the connecting artery and allows for much of the region to be explored by car. The best guidebook in publication is called (unsurprisingly) The Wild Atlantic Way Guide, which is available from Amazon and many good bookshops.
Of particular note is reference to Langs Bar in Grange, just two miles south of Milk Harbour, which is recognised to beone of the best traditional bars in Ireland.
The carpentry work was installed by Milk Harbour Holidays proprietor Geraldine’s great grandfather.