Portmagee is a traditional fishing village on the Wild Atlantic Way. It is located in the south west of Ireland. The village is now known as the gate way to the famous Skellig Rocks. The village of Portmagee itself won the best tourist town in Ireland in 2012. It really is a picture postcard village.
Portmagee gets its name
“Portmagee was first mentioned and got its name from the famous smuggler and pirate Captain Theobald Mcgee.
During the early 1700s the seamen of Portmagee were not noted for their fishing, for we find in a government document the harbours of Valentia and Dingle were regarded as the chief haunts of the Munster smugglers. The O’Sullivans, aided by Captain Theobald Magee, were at this time carrying on a prosperous trade several continental countries – illegally of course as there was no mention of Common Market or Free Trade in those days.
Magee himself was officer in King James’ army who retired after the battle of the Boyne and, becoming a sailor, commented a merchant ship trading between France, Portugal and Ireland. He must have been doing rather nicely, as we find that he acquired a large amount of property in Cork and Kerry and married Mrs Bridget Morgan. Records show that in 1724 Magee made his will at Lisbon, Portugal, after which he entered a monastery where he remained until his death in 1727. After his death bold Bridget did not spend too long mourning her husband and was soon busy carrying on the family business – smuggling.” Portmagee.ie
Portmagee and Skellig Michael
Every morning from May to September Portmagee springs to life as people descend on the little village to catch one of the boats going out to the famous Skellig Rocks. Boats land on the rocks weather permitting daily. Skellig Michael is the location of a monastic settlement and people have been visiting the rocks for years. Of course it is also a UNESCO world heritage site only one of three in Ireland. But in recent times there has been an explosion of interest in the rock as the last 2 Star Wars movies have been shot there.
Portmagee on the Skellig Ring
Portmagee truly is an idyllic village and it is located between high mountains and the Island of Valentia. It is on the world famous Skellig Ring. The Skellig Ring boasts some of the best views in the world, none more so than the view from Coom An Easpaig just 3 km from Portmagee Village. This year the ring was recommended by “The Lonely Planet” as one of the top ten places in the world to visit in 2017.
Portmagee looks on Valentia
Over the bridge from the village of Portmagee is the beautiful Island of Valentia. Valentia of course was the location for the Trans Atlantic Cable. Which truly was the start of Globalization thanks to the vision and persistence of Cyrus Fields. The island is also the home to the Tetrapod and the world famous Slate Quarry. The Tetrapod footprints are the most extensive of the four Devonian trackways in the world. The Slate from the quarry has been used extensively. For example, The Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey and Cathedral, St Paul’s Cathedral and many of the Underground Railways such as Waterloo, Charing Cross, Liverpool St., Black Friars. It was also used in the Paris Opera House.
Portmagee Seaside Cottages
So now you know more about Portmagee and want to visit this beautiful part of the world. Our Accommodation is the perfect base for you and your family or you and your friends to explore Portmagee and the Skellig Coast. Please visit our Booking page now to chose one of our houses today.