22 Apr Inchcleraun, County Longford
On this Island in Lough Ree, six churches make up the extensive remains of a monastery founded in the early 6th century by St Diarmuid. These include the Belfry Church, set on the highest point on the Island, an unusual Romanesque church with a square tower at the West end and stairs with two doors in the North wall. There is also a church, probably dedicated to the Blessed Virgin and known as the Woman’s Church. Teampull Mor, 13th century and called the Big Church, is rectangular with two lancet East windows. The earlier church is probably St Diarmuid’s.
The legendary Queen Maeve is said to have been killed on the Island by a sling stone fired from the shores of the lough while she was bathing.
Inchcleraun can be reached by boat from Coosan Point, Athlone, or Lanesborough and is a real hidden gem that is worth a visit on your Ireland tours.