Achill Island, Co. Mayo
All ancient monuments carry within their stones a poignant reminder of the lives of long-departed people. However the stones of Keel East sit adjacent to an even starker memento of life gone by: an entire deserted village.
Dingle, Co. Kerry
You can still feel the community pack
This place: it’s like going into a turfstack,
A core of old dark walled up with stone
A yard thick…
“In Gallarus Oratory,” 1969
Tullow, Co. Wicklow
The nineteenth century blarney depicted by travel writers in Ireland has not gone out of style. In June of 1979 our informants delighted in the competitive spirit, each trying to outdo the other in spinning the more outrageous tale of the Ring of the Rath.
Camp, Co Kerry
Cú Roí mac Dáire was a legendary sorcerer, an evil magician who resided in the south of Ireland in the brutal tribal era of the prehistoric Iron Age. He has given his name both to the mountain and to the stone fort near its peak.
Moynalty, Co. Meath
Ireland has remnants of more than 45,000 ringforts. There were once many more, now leveled and lost. That so many have survived is due in part to their being known as the homes of the fairies.
Cullamore, Co. Tyrone
Altadaven Glen, the light-dappled dreamscape location of St. Patrick’s Chair and Well, seems like a small patch of fern-filled rain forest magically dropped into Co. Tyrone.
Portnoo, Co. Donegal
This dolmen is a monumental shape-shifter, suggesting visual allusions, or acting as a megalithic Rorschach Test. People have described it as resembling a whale, a dolphin, an alligator, a fish, and the Concorde jet. Here you can view it from every angle and decide for yourself.
Ballyvourney, Co. Cork
St. Gobnait’s monastic site contains two holy wells and the reputed grave of this sixth-century holy woman within a ruined prehistoric tomb. It also features a striking sheela-na-gig figure, said by some to be an image of the saint, and by others to be a remnant of a pagan goddess religion.
Myths and Megaliths
The ancient Irish made their mark on the land with great stone and earthen structures. The legends that developed were thought to be among the earliest voices from the dawn of western civilization.