SCHULL is a sophisticated, cosmopolitan village of about seven hundred people that serves the wider Mizen peninsular and beyond.
People from all over - and particularly from Britain and elsewhere in Ireland - have visited Schull for generations and chosen to live here. So much is available: natural beauty and a temperate climate; culture and community life; healthy-living and physical activity; peace and relaxation; arts and crafts... It's up to you. Schull is a lifestyle choice.
Nature cries out to be explored, both on land and at sea. On the water there's diving, kayaking, fishing, sailing, surfing, island exploring, swimming and seal watching. On land there's walking, cycling, golf, pony-treking, bird-watching and - a local favourite - finding your own private spot with a book or a ‘pint' in hand and watching the world go by!
The entrepreneurial and artisan culture of our village is demonstrated by the high quality independent shops, diverse local businesses, and ever-increasing number of festivals and events held here. We are also part of the wider West Cork community: There's a Farmer's Market most days and a festival or two most weekends between April and October. The larger towns of Skibbereen and Bantry are less than a half hour drive, while westwards lies the sandy beaches of Ballyrisode (calm and shallow) and Barleycove (waves for surfers; acres of sand for swimmers and sunbathers). Explore the wild charms of the remote Mizen peninsular and its many islands - particularly our own special Roaring Water Bay (see: www.schull.ie and www.mizenlink.com).
It is easy to involve yourself in village life and there's much to be done, from helping to organize festivals like the Fasnet Short Film Festival to developing the local area through Schull Development Association. If you have a particular passion there are many groups that might suit you such as: the Choral Society, Bridge Club, Drama group, Church groups, Historical Society, Amnesty International, etc. Or you might simply join the welcoming ‘locals' in one of Schull's 7 pubs. . . still a focus of village life and the place to find the ‘craic' (pronounced ‘crack', it loosely translates as ‘fun').
West Cork is the (self-proclaimed) food capital of Ireland. We have restaurants and café's a-plenty, together with food producers quietly creating award-winning food on our doorstep. The Schull Sunday market is a good place to find some of these gourmet treats.
For those wishing to burn off the afore mentioned locally-produced food, there's the Triathalon Club (host of the Fastnet Triathalon), Squash and Tennis Courts and, within a 30 minute drive, swimming pools and spas, gyms, dance classes, yoga and martial arts. We're proud of our local teams too: rowing, triathalon, sailing, soccer, GAA Football and hurling, and you'll find no greater welcome than if you add your athletic prowess, or just a cheering voice, to ours.
Our children are at the heart of the community and it should be no surprise that our schools and youth club are the heartbeat of life here. The youth club doubles as a Community Information Centre and the Schull Community College, which is our secondary school and has perhaps the most beautiful views of any school in the world, serves as an activity hub for the wider Mizen peninsular. Famously it offers sailing as part of its transition year curriculum, and hosts the Fastnet Marine & Outdoor Education Center (www.schullsailing.ie), the Planetarium and winter Adult Education Classes (www.schullcommunitycollege.com).
It is hard to explain what makes our village so special but a key ingredient in the mix must be the diversity of people. Some are locals through and through, with impressive networks of extended family. Many have come from other parts of Ireland and form the "Blow-backs" - part of the world-wide Irish diaspora returning home. Others, from abroad or other parts of Ireland, had first to discover Schull before making it their home. There are several families - especially from Dublin and Cork - who keep a second home here and join us for part of the year. Then there are the tourists exploring this beautiful corner of Ireland and those who come here to study at the Atlantic School of English. All in all, the delightful mix of nationalities makes for a vibrant, cosmopolitan atmosphere.