Glendalough , County Wicklow
A monastic settlement founded by St. Kevin in the 6th century flourished around the valley’s two lakes for over 600 years. It survived many attacks before being burned and abandoned in 1398. The area became a place of pilgrimage until it was suppressed by Cardinal Cullen of Dublin in 1862. Conservation work on the buildings , which include a 103ft round tower , a 12th century monastic cemetery and a 7th century cathedral , began in 1873 and has continued since.
Among the other religious remains on the site are St. Saviour’s , an 11th century church , and the tiny St. Kevin’s Church. St. Kevin’s Bed , a cave where the saint is said to have begun his solitary life , can be seen in a cliff 30ft above the water of the upper lake.
Glendalough has a rich history and is a real hidden gem and a must see on your Ireland tours.