An advert for two summer jobs on the Great Blasket Island has attracted a staggering 23,000 applications.

The Dingle couple, who operate a café along with cottage accommodation on the Co Kerry island, say they have been completely overwhelmed by the response. 

Alice Hayes and her partner Billy O'Connor posted the advert on social media just ten days ago.

They are seeking two people to run the small café and 3 cottages from April to October. The successful candidates will stay on the uninhabited island.

"It’s been unbelievable. We were worried we wouldn’t get anyone. We had a lot of interest last week but in the last few days it’s been mad.

"We’ve received applications from places like Iran, Argentina, Finland, Mexico, everywhere really. Our email is in meltdown and our phones are just pinging constantly," Ms Hayes said.

Mr O’Connor said many of the applicants seem to be attracted by the remote nature of the island and its natural beauty.

"I suppose people just want to disconnect from the rush of everyday life and get off the grid. Things are really basic out there. There's no electricity. Cooking is done on gas cookers. Light is provided by candles, heating is a solid fuel stove. There are no creature comforts, no hot showers." 

"We had a lovely couple working there last year, Leslie and Gordon. They were fantastic and had a genuine appreciation and love for the place. They really took to it."

News of the job advertisement has travelled far and wide on social media and in the last couple of days the island opportunity has been featured on major news and travel outlets such as CNN, CBS, Lonely Planet and Fox News.

"We’ve had coverage in the most unlikeliest places. We’ve had applications in languages we can’t even recognise.

"We’ve also received some very moving personal stories. We had a lovely application from a 79-year-old and 83-year-old couple," Ms Hayes said.

The Dingle couple have responded to in and around 1,000 applicants so far, but they said it will be impossible to get through every email.

They hope to meet a number of applicants over the coming weeks before making a final decision. 

"One of the three cottages we have belonged to Peig Sayers, the great storyteller.

"It’s important that the people working there understand and appreciate the island’s rich literary heritage and history," Mr O’Connor said.