Innishmurray, County Sligo
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Innishmurray, County Sligo

About 4 miles off Sligo’s untamed northern coast lies an uninhabited, windswept island that contains one of the best-preserved early Christian monasteries in Ireland. The monastery was founded by St Molaise in the 6th century and destroyed by the Vikings in 807. Three churches remain, enclosed within a 13ft high dry-stone wall, or cashel. The […]

Kinnaird Head lighthouse
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Fraserburgh, Northern Aberdeenshire

Fraserburgh, affectionately known to locals as the Broch, is Europe’s largest shellfish port. Like Peterhead, Fraserburgh’s fortune has been founded on the fishing industry.   The excellent Scottish Lighthouse Museum provides a fascinating insight into the network of lights that have safeguarded the Scottish coast for over 100 years, and the men and women who […]

Moyne Abbey, County Mayo
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Moyne Abbey, County Mayo

This large ruin of a friary shares much with its neighbour, Rosserk. Both compete for the title of largest and most impressive ecclesiastical ruins in Mayo. Moyne was founded as a Franciscan friary by the Burke family, built in late Irish Gothic style and consecrated in 1462.   The church has a nave and chancel […]

Dumfries
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Dumfries & Galloway

Some of the region’s finest attractions lie in the gentle hills and lush valleys of Dumfries & Galloway. Ideal for families, there’s plenty on offer. Galloway Forest is a highlight, with its sublime views, mountain-biking and walking trails, red deer, kites and other wildlife, as are the dream-like ruins of Caerlaverock Castle.   Adding to […]

King John’s Castle, County Limerick
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King John’s Castle, County Limerick

Five irregularly spaced drum towers linked by massive walls are all that remain of the castle that King John built in the early 13th century to keep the peace in Thomond (as the area was then called) between the Norman settlers and the O’Brien clan, kings and later earls of Thomond. Two of the towers […]

Galloway Forest
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Southern Scotland

An enchanting region of Scotland that seems to slip off the radar for many international visitors, southern Scotland is often missed by the hordes scrambling to destinations further north. A shame – but also a wonderful part of its attraction. Crowd free castles to ramble around, miles of open countryside and small traffic-free roads along […]

Lough Derg, County Donegal
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Lough Derg, County Donegal

For 1500 years’ pilgrims have been beating a path to this remote stretch of water set in a barren landscape. In the middle of the lake is the small Station Island, which is covered with buildings and looks – from a distance at least – like a detail from a Canaletto painting. The four storey […]

Glen Clova, Angus & Dundee
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Glen Clova, Angus & Dundee

The longest and loveliest of the Angus Glens stretches north from Kirriemuir for 20 miles, broad and pastoral in its lower reaches but growing narrower and craggier as the steep, heather-clad Highland hills close in around its head.   Jock’s Road is an ancient footpath that was much used by cattle drovers, soldiers, smugglers and […]

Newgrange, County Meath
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Newgrange, County Meath

The most impressive Stone Age tomb in Europe stands on a hill above the Boyne’s fertile valley, part of a huge prehistoric cemetery known as Burgh na Boinne. It is older than Stonehenge, and even older than the Egyptian Pyramids. A pear-shaped mound, Newgrange reaches 36t high and about 300ft across, and is surrounded t […]

Howth Castle, Dublin
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Howth Castle, Dublin

A few minutes’ walk west of the village, is an irregular battlemented structure dating from 1564, but much restored by Francis Bindon in 1738 (his portrait of Swift hangs in the Castle) and by Morrison and Lutyens (1911) who added the pseudo-medieval west tower. Seat of the Earl of Howth until the death of the […]