| 12.9 km2 || Sligonian|
| Benbulbin, Carrowmore, Knocknarea, Lough Gill, Yeats Memorial Building|
Institute of Technology - Sligo, Sligo College of Further Education, St Angelas College - Sligo
Sligo (Irish: , meaning "abounding in shells" — SLY-goh; ) is a coastal seaport and the county town of County Sligo, Ireland within the western province of Connacht. With a population of approximately 20,000 in 2014, It is both the largest urban centre and the regional capital of the northwest of Ireland. The Sligo Borough District constitutes 61% (38,581) of the countys population of (63,000).
Despite its relatively small size, Sligo is an historic, cultural, commercial, industrial, retail and service centre of regional importance. Served by established rail, port and road links, Sligo exerts a significant influence on its hinterland.
Whilst not classed as a city by the Irish government, it performs the functions of a city in its region, and is referred to interchangeably as a city and a town by both inhabitants and authorities. See City status in Ireland.
Sligo is also a popular tourist destination, being situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty, and with many literary and cultural associations.
Sligo is an English language corruption of the Irish name Sligeach, meaning "abounding in shells" or "shelly place". This refers to the abundance of shellfish found in the river and its estuary, and from the extensive shell middens in the vicinity. The river now known as the Garavogue (Irish: An Gharbhóg) meaning "little rough one" was originally called the Sligeach. It is listed as one of the seven "royal rivers" of Ireland in the 9th century AD tale The Destruction of Da Dergas Hostel.
The Ordnance Survey letters of 1836 state that "cart loads of shells were found underground in many places within the town where houses now stand". This whole area, from the river estuary at Sligo, around the coast to the river at Ballysadare Bay, is rich in marine resources which were utilised as far back as the Mesolithic period.
Situated on the coastal plain facing the Atlantic Ocean, the town is located on low gravel hills on the banks of the Garavogue river between Lough Gill and the estuary leading to Sligo bay. Sligo Harbour and Sligo city are surrounded by a mountainous skyline, with the ridges of Slieve Daeane and Killery Mountain to the south-east, Cope’s and Keelogyboy Mountains to the northeast, the highly distinctive Knocknarea to the west and Benbulbin to the north.
It is an important bridging point on the main north/south route between Ulster and Connacht. It is within County Sligo, the Barony of Carbury and formerly the tuath of (Cairbre Drom Cliabh). It is within the Diocese of Elphin and is the seat of the bishops of this diocese.
It is in the Province of Connacht. It is situated in the Border Region, a region of over 500,000 people which comprises the counties of Sligo, Cavan, Donegal, Leitrim, Louth and Monaghan.
The service sector is the primary employment sector in the city. Ireland’s tool making industry is centred on Sligo, which is a manufacturing centre of considerable importance. The pharmaceutical industry is significant with several companies producing goods for this sector, most notably Abbott (Ireland) Ltd. Abbott is the largest corporate employer in Sligo.
The creative sector is important in Sligo with 4.2% of the population engaged in creative industries, the highest proportion in Connacht, excepting Leitrim.
Sligo was a significant inspiration on both poet and Nobel laureate W. B. Yeats and his brother the artist, illustrator and comics pioneer Jack Butler Yeats. An extensive collection of Jack B Yeats art is held in the Model Niland Gallery on the Mall.
Yeats Summer School takes place every year in the town and attracts scholars from all over the world, notably Japan.
Sligo town recently highlighted its connections with Goon Show star and writer Spike Milligan, whose father was from Sligo, by unveiling a plaque at the former Milligan family home at Number 5 Holborn Street.
Sligo is the birthplace of the Irish boy band Westlife.
Sligo hosts many festivals throughout the year including Sligo Live occurring every October, The Sligo Summer Festival which celebrated the 400th anniversary of Sligo town and The Fleadh Cheoil which the town hosted in three consecutive years (1989, 1990 & 1991) and will host again in 2014 & 2015.
Sligo Jazz Project which happens every July is also very popular.