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Irish Lace, County Fermanagh

A recent article in Ireland of the Welcomes magazine about Irish lace lamented that there is no “dedicated textile museum where collections can be viewed.” But in a sleepy little town near Enniskillen, Co. Fermanagh is the extravagant Sheelin Lace Museum. Layer upon layer of antique Irish lace is artistically showcased among elegant displays of jewelry, embroidery, feathers, […]

The Long and Winding Road to Gleninchaquin: Beara Peninsula, Co Kerry

Hidden in a scenic glacial valley less than 20 miles from Kenmare is Gleninchaquin Park. A small one-track road meanders deep into the Beara Peninsula. At one point an even smaller side road leads to Uragh Stone Circle. As you near the park the vista opens to dramatically display Inchaquin Falls cascading about 300 feet […]

Barryscourt Castle

Barryscourt Castle is a wonderfully restored tower house, occupying a ancient site. The 16th century castle was home to the Barrymores a powerful branch of the Barry family and is in a bucolic setting near Carrigtowhill in West Cork. © 2013 Michele Erdvig IrelandYes: Barryscourt Castle Heritage Ireland: Barryscourt Castle

Drombeg Stone Circle: Rosscarbery, Co. Cork

Known locally as the Druid’s Altar, Drombeg Stone Circle is set on a hillside in rural West Cork about 1-½ miles east of Glandore. Dating back over 2,000 years, the stones stand sentinel over the countryside with distant views of the ocean. Thirty feet in diameter, the seventeen stones have a flat altar stone, which is […]

Clare Abbey: Clarecastle, Co. Clare

Clare Abbey is a scenic ruin of crumbling walls, tracery windows, a tower and ruined battlements. At one time the largest and most important Augustinian monastery in County Clare, its former glory slumbers by the railroad tracks surrounded by fields of cows and sheep like countless other ruins scattered all over Ireland. IrelandYes: Clare Abbey History […]

Romantic Gougane Barra: Pass of Keimaneigh, Co. Cork

Gougane Barra, Ireland’s first forest park, is secreted away in a glacial valley. Surrounded by the Sheehy Mountains the former monastic site is a popular venue for Irish weddings. A small Romanesque-style oratory sits on an island in the lake, reflected romantically in the still waters. Over 1,000 acres of woods and mountains contain walking […]

Father Ted’s House: Glenquin, Co. Clare

The fictional Irish priest Father Ted lives in an old parochial house on Craggy Island off the coast of Ireland. His roommates are nitwit Dougal and drunken Father Jack. The housekeeper Mrs. Doyle tries to keep them all in line with plates of sandwiches and pots of tea. The brilliant sitcom is a cult classic […]

Blackwater Village Grotto: Co. Wexford

Blackwater Village in Co. Wexford is just a wide spot in the road that has been awarded a Tidy Town award several times. Opposite a unique thatched “shell cottage” is a stone bridge, river and cascade. Hidden away beside the river is a beautiful Marian shrine surrounded by leafy green trees. Every year a procession […]

Waiting on Shore Monument: Rosses Point, Co. Sligo

A poignant memorial to seafarers and their loved ones who waited for their safe return, the Waiting on Shore monument at Rosses Point, Co. Sligo is a large bronze statue by Niall Bruton. Depicting a woman with outstretched arms looking longingly out to sea, it is evocative of patience, anguish and lost love. The engraved plaque […]

The World’s Oldest Operating Lighthouse: Hook Head, Co. Wexford

The lighthouse at Hook Head sits at the tip of a long low-lying peninsula guarding the entrance to Waterford Harbor. Across the water is Crook Castle, which some say coined the term “By Hook or by Crook”. Founded in the 5th century by Welsh monk St. Dubhain, the first beacon was merely a bonfire to […]

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