Sligo Town , County Sligo

Sited on both sides of the Garavouge River, the settlement was given in 1235 to Maurice Fitzgerald , who built a castle here and founded a Dominican friary.

In a period of 50 years during the 13th century both were destroyed five times , and later castles and abbeys continued to be sacked and gutted by fire during a series of sieges. The busy county town is a good base for W. B. Yeats enthusiasts , golfers and walkers , while its proximity to wonderful beaches , including Rosses Point , makes it ideal for families.

The ruins of the 13th century Dominican abbey can be seen on Abbey Street , while the Sligo Museum and Art Gallery , Stephen Street contains Ireland’s largest collection of Jack B. Yeats paintings. There is also a Yeats Museum , the nearby Yeats Building at Douglas Hyde Bridge is the HQ of the Yeats Society , and venue for the annual Yeats summer school.

The Hawk’s Well Theatre on Temple Street hosts national and local productions. Haragadon’s Pub , O’Connell Street , a truly traditional bar (women have only been served here since the late 1970s) , is another must see attraction to visit.

Just South West of the town are the Carrowmore megalithic tombs. More than 85 tombs are believed 10 have survived until the 19th century , when they were demolished by landowners or rifled by amateur archaeologists. Sixty tombs have been located to date.

Sligo Town has a rich history and is a real hidden gem that is worth a visit on your Ireland tours.