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Clonmel, County Tipperary

With splendid views of the rugged Comeragh Mountains only a few miles to the south, Clonmel, whose Irish name means ‘honey meadow’, is one of Ireland’s most charming towns. It is Tipperary’s county town, with an intimate atmosphere within the remains of its old walls. The town’s two gates still stand at either end of […]

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Finn MacCool’s Fingers, County Cavan

In a quiet pine glade on Shantemon Hill, five great boulders stand in a row on the emerald grass. Named after the legendary Irish giant-slayer Finn MacCool, or MacCumhaill, the stones are thought to have been erected during the Bronze Age (between 1750 and 500BC), but their original purpose is unknown. Shantemon Hill is said […]

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Grey Abbey, County Down

Thanks to being retained for parish worship for much of the 17th and 18th centuries, more remains of Grey Abbey church than of many other Irish monasteries. Built on Strangford Lough, it is set in mature parkland and has an atmosphere of monastic calm. The Abbey was founded in 1193 by Affreca, daughter of Godred, […]

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Knappogue Castle, County Clare

The battlemented keep of Knappogue – built by one of the MacNamras in 1467 – and its later extensions were rescued from ruin in the 1960s by Mark Edwin Andrews of Houston, Texas, a former assistant secretary of the US Navy, and his architect wife. They transformed a mere shell into an authentic setting for […]

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Timoney Standing Stones, County Tipperary

On top of a hill, in a labyrinth of lanes, stand some 300 stones. All about 3ft high and seemingly scattered at random, their origin and significance are a mystery. Many explanations have been put forward – Bronze Age rituals, druidical ceremonies, even medieval follies – but no convincing explanation has stuck. Perhaps they mark […]

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Clontuskert, County, County Galway

The well-preserved ruins of an Augustinian priory stand about a quarter of a mile’s walk across fields at the edge of the vale of Suck. The original foundation on the site was by St Baetan in 805 and from 1140 it became a monastery of great wealth and influence. A disastrous fire destroyed it in […]

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Glinsk Castle, County Galway

A ruined shell on a rise above a small, wooded rover valley is all that remains of one of the many tower houses built in this area by the de Burgo family. It dates from the 1630s, by which time these defensive buildings began to evolve into more comfortable places to live in. it has […]

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Tipperary, County Tipperary

Known as “Arann’s well” in Irish, Tipperary is full of many interesting features including monuments to some of its less law-abiding citizens. The statue of the Maid of Erin commemorates three men known as the Manchester Martyrs, who were executed in England in 1867 for killing a police officer while trying to rescue a prisoner. […]

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O’Connell Street, Dublin, County Dublin

A statue of Daniel O’Connell, ‘The Liberator’, stands at the Southern end of the street named after him, overlooking O’Connell Bridge, the city’s main North-South link. Around the plinth fly bronze angels of victory, their wings pierced with bullet holes from the Easter Rising of 1916. Behind the victor in the struggle for Catholic emancipation […]

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Edenderry, County Offaly

This spacious Georgian town, with a long,  straggling main street lined with neat houses and shops, marks the Westward limits of the Pale, the region centred on Dublin that was under direct English rule, and which gave us the expression ‘beyond the pale’. Still to be seen dotted around the area are the crumbling walls […]