Largest of the Irish isles off the west coast with an area of 57 square miles.
Achill Island in Mayo is the largest of the Irish isles, and is situated off the west coast. It has a population of 2,594 and an area of 148 km2 (57 sq mi). Achill is attached to the mainland by Michael Davitt Bridge, between the villages of Gob an Choire (Achill Sound) and Poll Raithní (Polranny). A bridge was first completed here in 1887. Other centres of population include the villages of Keel, Dooagh, Dumha Éige (Dooega), Dún Ibhir (Dooniver) and Dugort. Early human settlements are believed to have been established on Achill around 3000 BC. The island is 87% peat bog. The parish of Achill consists of Achill Island, Achillbeg, Inishbiggle and the Corraun Peninsula. Roughly half of the island, including the villages of Achill Sound and Bunacurry are in the Gaeltacht or traditional Irish-speaking region of Ireland, although the vast majority of the island’s population speaks English as their daily language.
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