Lighthouse Oileán Thoraí / Tory Island, Co. Donegal, IrelandTau Cross Oileán Thoraí / Tory Island, Co. Donegal, IrelandOileán Thoraí / Tory Island, Co. Donegal, IrelandView of mainland from Oileán Thoraí / Tory Island, Co. Donegal, IrelandEast Town  & sea - Oileán Thoraí / Tory Island, Co. Donegal, IrelandView of mainland from Oileán Thoraí / Tory Island, Co. Donegal, Ireland

A Visit To Tory Island

English Gaeilge


Words alone, no matter how finely woven, could never give a true impression of the rugged beauty of Tory, the indominatable spirit of its people or their rich cultural inheritance. Tory must be visited if one is even to begin to understand why this remote crag, two and a half miles long and three quarters of a mile wide, holds such an attraction for its inhabitants that they, like their forebears, endure the full fury of the North Atlantic winter for pleasure and the privilage of living here in summer.

Tory's spectacular cliff scenery is complemented by a rich and varied history which is related in the islanders distinctive Gaelic. Colm Cille figures prominently in the history of this sacred island which he chose as a place of retreat and meditation for his monks. Shipwrecks, poitín smuggling and tales of violent storms have also been drawn into its folklore.

Nevertheless, it is neither the myths, the monastic ruins nor even the majestic cliffs which make the deepest impression on visitors to Tory. It is the islanders themselves, like all people who live in remote places and work hard to make a living, the islanders know how to enjoy themselves and they always make a stranger feel at home.