"The Rosses", from the Irish "Ros" meaning "a headland", merits its name as it indeed comprises a heavily indented coastline with many headlands and bays.
The area stretches from the Gweebarra river in the south to the Gweedore river in the north. To the east lie the Derryveagh mountains while the Atlantic ocean bounds it to the west.
It is an area of rugged moorland with intrusions of granite rock and containing innumerable lakes of varying sizes. Its coastline has numerous promontories and inlets with many exquisite sandy beaches while off-shore are a number of islands including Arranmore, Inishfree, Owey as well as Cruit.
Within the Rosses are several Gaeltachts, designated areas of
Ireland where Gaelic is still the primary language and Irish
traditions and culture form part of everyday life.
The Rosses is divided into areas (or townlands) normally surrounding a small town or village of the same name, such as Dungloe, Kincasslagh, Doochary, Lettermacaward, Loughanure and Annagary.
Dungloe is the largest town and has a number of supermarkets as well as various other shops. There are also several of the Irish banks represented here. It is also the setting for the annual "Mary from Dungloe" festival which is held at the end of July and beginning of August while most of the other areas have their own events at various times in the summer.