Achill Tourism have asked campers visiting the island to book into a camp site in advance of their arrival following an influx of campers to the island over the weekend.
With only one public caravan and camping site currently open on the island, a large influx of camper vans, caravans and campers resulted in a number of ‘pop-up’ campsites at various beauty spots in Achill over the weekend.
There were reports of numerous camper vans parked overnight along with tents pitched on the Keel Sandybanks, as well as close to Keem Bay and the bottom of the Minaun Cliffs in Dookinella.
While there was no problems, the sight of so many camper vans parked up raised eyebrows among locals on the island, with concerns raised by some on social media platforms. In response to some concerns, Achill Tourism issued a statement on its Facebook page asking people to be mindful where they park-up when arriving on the island.
“Please note that ‘wild camping’ is not legally permitted in Ireland without consent from the landowner. We urge all campers planning to visit Achill to book in advance into our official campsites. This applies to tents, motorhomes and caravans. This request is particularly important during the current pandemic when hygiene and public health are paramount. Please adhere to all HSE advice and social distancing rules during your visit and be safe,” the statement read.
Last weekend was one of the busiest since the lifting of restrictions at the end of June with a noteable increase of visitors from Northern Ireland for the July 12 holiday.
The largest caravan park in Achill, which is owned by Mayo County Council and located in Keel, is scheduled to open on July 20 but with a reduced capacity due to Covid-19 restrictions. The Seal Caves Caravan and Campsite located in Dugort is the only public campsite open to date on the island while Lavelle’s Caravan Park also in Dugort is operating as a private mobile home park in 2020.