Castlebar is a town in County Mayo.
Castlebar is Mayo's largest town. The town's population exploded in the late 1990s, increasing by one-third in just six years, though this growth has slowed down since then. A campus of Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology and the Country Life section of the National Museum of Ireland are two important local amenities. The town is connected by railway to Dublin and the neighbouring Mayo towns of Westport and Ballina. The town has several small satellite villages around it, such as Ballyvary, Ballyheane, Breaffy and Parke. The main route by road is the N5. Its economy is primarily service-based.
- Driving from Dublin: Take the N4 to Longford then exit to the N5. This will take you right into Castlebar. This is about a 3-hour drive.
- Irish Rail run a train directly from Heuston Station in Dublin on the Westport line. Castlebar is the second to last stop and the journey is approximately 3 hours.
- Driving from the south: Take the N60.
- You can fly from the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain and France to Ireland West Airport Knock (NOC IATA) which is 32km away.
- There are 3 buses a day from Dublin.
Walking is the best way to get around Castlebar.
- Local Churches. There are Roman Catholic, Church of Ireland (Anglican), Elim Pentecostal and Spiritualist churches in town. There is a Mayo male voice choir and Mayo Concert Orchestra. There is also a marching band in town - one of the few surviving marching bands west of the Shannon.
- Museum of Country Life (5 km east of Castlebar).
- Ballintubber Abbey. This is 10 km south of Castlebar.
- Burrishoole Abbey. This is 10 km west of Castlebar.
- Clew Bay 15 km west is dotted with tiny islands: these are drumlins deposited by glaciers.
- Tourmakeady, 20 km south of Castlebar, has an attractive waterfall and looks onto Lough Mask.
- Arts and Event Centres. Castlebar is home to The Linenhall Arts Centre, which exhibits visual art throughout the year, as well as hosting live drama and music performances. The Linenhall also organises an annual children's arts festival called Roola Boola (an anglicisation of the Irish phrase rí rá agus ruaile buaile which in this context means "boisterous fun"). The Royal Theatre and Event Centre, with a capacity of 2200 fully seated, 4000 standing, hosts larger-scale productions and popular music concerts.
- Mayo Peace Park is a pleasant area for strolling.
- Blues Music Fest. This is on the weekend before the first Monday in June.
- International Four Days' Walk. This is held in July.
- The Heart of Castlebar Festival. Where the main street becomes pedestrianized with a wide range of stalls and performances. Thousands of people flocked to main street last year to this festival. Croí na Nollaig in December where Stalls and plenty of Sales are available.
- Sports: Watch Gaelic Football and Hurling at McHale Park, soccer at Milebush Stadium and Celtic Park. Play golf at Castlebar Golf Club, sometimes in summer its possible to see cricket being played on the Mall. Take a cycle around the town, there are now cycle lanes on some roads, play basketball, racquetball and handball at An Sportlann and De La Salle Community Sports Centre. Go swimming at Castlebar Swimming pool and play tennis at Castlebar Tennis Club`s new tennis centre near Lough Lannagh.
- Go to the races at Ballinrobe Racecourse. This is 15 km south of Castlebar.
Castlebar choices include Italian (Al Muretto, Portifino Italiano), Indian, Chinese, Irish (An Carraig), Cox's and fast food (Cafollas, Danollas, Blue Thunder, Top Nosh, Supermacs, Dominos Pizza, McDonalds and Apache Pizza) as well as cafes (Cafe Rua, Moka and McCarthys).
One of the oldest pubs in Castlebar is John McHale's pub, located on New Line. The pub is known for its sale of a Meejum of Guinness, which is slightly less than a pint.