Benbulben, Sligo

4.8
#2 of 11 in Nature in Sligo
Benbulbin, sometimes spelled Ben Bulben or Benbulben, is a large rock formation in County Sligo, Ireland. It is part of the Dartry Mountains, in an area sometimes called "Yeats Country".Benbulbin is a protected site, designated as a County Geological Site by Sligo County Council.Etymology"Ben Bulben", "Benbulben", and "Benbulbin" are all anglicisations of the Irish name "Binn Ghulbain". "Binn" means "peak" or "mountain", while "Ghulbain" means beak or jaw in Irish. The literal translation is therefore "beak" or "jaw" peak.The name is also echoed in the name of the king Conall Gulban, a son of Niall of the Nine Hostages who was associated with the mountain, however, whether he was named after the mountain or the mountain after him is not clear.GeologyFormationBenbulbin was shaped during the ice age, when Ireland was under glaciers. Originally it was a large plateau. Glaciers moving from the northeast to southwest shaped it into its present distinct formation.Rock compositionBenbulbin, and the Dartry Mountains as a whole, are composed of limestones on top of mudstones. These rocks formed in the area approximately 320 million years ago in a shallow sea. Uppermost in the limestone layer is a thicker, harder limestone called the Dartry Limestone Formation. Below this is a thinner transitional limestone formation – the Glencar Limestone Formation. Further down, the lower slopes consist of shaly mudstone known as the Benbulben Shale Formation. Scree deposits are found near the base.
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  • August 13, 2017
    It is reasonably easy to climb. Park near Lukes bridge and walk on the cart track towards the lower valley and climb up by the stream 40 mins or so. It is vast on top with real fresh air and a fantast...  more »
  • August 11, 2017
    It had been years since I was up the top of Ben Bulben, so I took the family up last week on a visit to Sligo. We parked at Luke's bridge on the Grange side of the mountain, well signposted from the m...  more »
  • August 11, 2017
    A mount that paral alone!! Wonderful, especially its shape, beautiful the landscape you see before your eyes!! Behind the Benbulben, but ahead of sweeping hills and the ocean, with a thousand colours! We prepared for the long walk but unfortunately the rain allowed us to arrive only at one point in the way invented by us. I'm not sure if there are established routes, but in the end wherever you arrive the view is truly spectacular, you will feel small, you'll experience impotence in front of such beauty! Plan to make a long trekking, because to get out of it takes 3 hours too good!!
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Where to stay in Sligo

The town of Sligo boasts a number of lovely accommodations, including hostels and guesthouses, while the landscape surrounding the town is dotted with hotels catering to a range of budgets. If you want to surf away your holiday or explore the setting that inspired Yeats, stay in a bed and breakfast in Sligo town along Old Dublin Road. If you prefer to stay in a more natural setting, explore options in the surrounding countryside. In either case, you will be able to access the alluring coast and the town's historical monuments easily.
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