Roundstone, County Galway

Roundstone (Irish: Cloch na Rón, meaning "seal's rock") is a village on the west coast of Ireland, in the Connemara region of County Galway. The town of Clifden is nearby to the north.


Cloch na Rón
View of harbour towards Roundstone village
Location in Ireland
Coordinates: 53.395°N 9.918°W / 53.395; -9.918
CountyCounty Galway
20 m (70 ft)
Irish Grid ReferenceL725405

The anglicised name is usually considered an error on the part of the British colonial Ordnance Survey, which translated the village name; while Cloch certainly means "stone" or "rock", Rón means "seal", not "round". Still, the names Cloch na Rón and Roundstone may be totally independent.[2] The bay is referred to as Round-stone Haven as early as 1684 (Roderick O'Flaherty), and the rock after which it is named stands like a marker at the entrance and is strikingly round.


The Bus Éireann Clifden to Galway route serves Roundstone three days a week during the winter and daily during the summer.[3] The village is connected to the rest of the national road network via a regional road, the R341. This connects it to the N59.


Roundstone is known as a home for creativity and the arts. For many years some of the most important figures in Irish Art have painted there, including Paul Henry, Jack B. Yeats, Gerard Dillon and Nano Reid. The Roundstone Arts Week celebrates youth and environment on an annual basis. The local Summerfest, is held in July. Traditional Irish Nights are held weekly throughout July and August and offers music, song and dance from the Connemara area.

Twin village

Roundstone is twinned with the village of Noyelles-sous-Lens (a suburb of Lens, Pas-de-Calais) in France.[4]

Archaeological discovery

In 1998 Sean Gorham of Inishnee, Roundstone, County Galway, was engaged in turf-cutting in Roundstone Bog "when he noticed what appeared to be a series of flat stones laid at regular intervals ... Believing them to be the remains of an ancient trackway, Mr. Gorham left the stones undisturbed, and through the good offices of Martin O'Malley, Roundstone, and Michael Gibbons, Clifden, his discovery was brought to the attention of the National Museum of Ireland."

Gorham's find was located in the townland of Derrycunlagh. Investigation revealed that earlier turf-cutters had removed part of the trackway but its two extant stretches determine its route. The trackway appeared to date from the early Bronze Age, while the field wall may have been of an earlier date.

In an article of 2002, it was stated that "Thanks are due to the late Sean Gorham, whose keen eye and interest save the trackway from destruction and brought it to scientific attention."

Drowning tragedy during the War of Independence

On February 6, 1921, during the Irish War of Independence, four volunteers of the Old IRA were making their way by boat from Carna to Roundstone for a battalion meeting, when they were caught by a violent storm and drowned on the shore of Inishlaken Island.[5]


Films shot in Roundstone

See also


  1. "Census 2016 Sapmap Area: Settlements Roundstone". Central Statistics Office (Ireland). Retrieved 19 February 2019.
  2. Tim Robinson, Connemara - Listening to the Wind, 2006.
  4. Twinning: Archived 2010-01-24 at the Wayback Machine Roundstone News, January 2009
  5. Irish Military Archives
  6. The Mackintosh Man, 2018.
  • pp. 24–26, "A possible pre-bog field wall and an ancient trackway in Roundstone Bog, County Galway", Archaeology Ireland, Autumn 2002
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