08 Jan Glencolumbkille, County Donegal
Glencolumbkille (the glen of St. Columba), is said to have been a favourite retreat of the saint and his disciples. On the hillside ascending north to Glen Head – a sheer precipice 227m high, with a Napoleonic signal tower above it – are the House, Well, ‘Chair’ and ‘Bed’ of St. Columba.
In the area surrounding the village, which is an important centre of the Gaeltacht, are a superb collection of early cross-slabs arranged in the form of a turas of ‘stations’. On 9th June, the saint’s feast day, a 5km barefoot journey, which begins at the 19th century Protestant Church, (the site probably representing an early ecclesiastical enclosure) visits 15 early Christian and pre-Christian monuments.
Glencolumbkille is a hidden gem that is a must see on your tours of Ireland.