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Exploring Kilcrea Monastery and Ovens, County Cork

I recently explored Kiclrea Friary (also called Kilcrea Abbey) and Kilcrea Tower, which is located across the road and a field from the friary. Kilcrea Friary dates back to 1400s and is an ancestral burial place for the mighty McCarthy family of Munster, the most famous  is that of Art O’Leary. His grave is clearly marked and […]

Discovering a Local Legend of St Nicholas at Jerpoint Park: Jerpoint, Co Kilkenny

I remember hearing the local legend of St. Nicholas being buried near Jerpoint Abbey when I visited in 2008.  We were told that the nearby Church of St. Nicholas as his final resting place after his remains were brought to Ireland by two Crusading knights. At that time the church wasn’t easy to get to […]

Split Rock Boulder: Easkey, Co Sligo

The enormous boulder in the field beside the road is said to have been placed there by the giant Finn McCool. He challenged members of his band, called the Fianna, try tossing a large stone to the sea. Being a bit of a show-off, Finn chose the biggest stone he could find and hurled it […]

Legend of the Connemara Giant: Recess, Co Galway

Just before you reach Clifden, the unofficial “capital of Connemara”, you pass Joyce’s, “One of the Best Craft Shops in Ireland.” As we did enter those doors, I can tell you, it is a really good craft shop. I purchased some Connemara Marble coasters that remind me daily of our last trip to Ireland. Right across the […]

Mebh’s Cairn Knocknarea, Co Sligo

Knocknarea is an iconic landmark in Sligo. Located on the scenic Strandhill road, the small mountain rises prominently with dramatic sheer edges facing Strandhill. There are several cairns on top, the largest called Mebh’s (Maeve) cairn. There is a nice climb to the top with breathtaking views of Strandhill, Sligo town, Rosses point and Lough […]

Exploring the Hill of Tara – Sacred Well, Sheela-na-gig, and Sloping Trenches: Tara, Co Meath

Most people who visit Tara spend 20 minutes going to the top and back – and they miss so much. Tara has many hidden corners, and here are three of my favourites. The Sloping Trenches: these two round earthworks are away from the main track, on the quiet western side. They veer off the edge, […]

Celtic and Prehistoric Museum: Ventry, Co Kerry

Harris Moore, an American ex-pat, started this private museum about 10 years ago, and has a wonderful collection of items, ranging from ancient bones and artifacts to more recent local crafts in his shop. The collection impressed me, and I’m not easily impressed! This is a fantastic stop on your way around the Dingle loop, […]

The Royal Celtic Capital of Connacht: Tulsk, Co Roscommon

Covering over four square miles, at least 200 sites and monuments, and tracing through history from the earliest settlement (8,000 years ago) right through Stone Age, Iron Age, and Gaelic Kingship to the latest Medieval – this complex of sites is the ‘Celtic Royal Capital’ of Connacht, the western province of Ireland. Druids, Queen Maeve, […]

Killeigh Holy Well and Rag Tree: Killeigh, Co Offaly

Among the “seven blessed wells of Killeigh, this dry stone wall channels water from a natural spring. Water from this well is said to heal eye ailments. An nearby abbey was founded St Senchell the Elder whose feast day is celebrated on March 26th. There is also an active rag tree on the site. The […]

The Tomb of the Cormack Brothers: Loughmore, Co Tipperary

In 1858, two Tipperary brothers, Daniel and William Cormack, were convicted of murder. They insisted on their innocence, but the evidence, which was later found to be fabricated, was damning. They were hung outside Nenagh Gaol (Jail) on May 11, 1858, and buried on the prison grounds. Later, a man confessed to the murder, and […]

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