Dingle Peninsula, Co. Kerry
In 1910 T.J. Westropp called Dunbeg “the most complex and remarkable of the Irish promontory forts.” But archaeologists have few finds from the site. Why would the prehistoric inhabitants of Dunbeg bury their refuse when it was so easy to toss it over the edge of the cliff?
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.
Tulsk, Co. Roscommon
Rathcroghan has both a geographic and a symbolic presence. It is an archaeological treasure trove, but it also is the venue of a queen-goddess with the power of conferring legitimacy on the tribal kings of ancient Ireland.
Inishmore, Co. Galway
Dun Aengus is precariously perched on the edge of a vertical cliff, perhaps parts of it already fallen down into the churning waters of the Atlantic nearly 100 meters (300 feet) below.
Doagh, Co. Antrim
A visitor to the Doagh Holestone might find the ground blanketed in flower petals, the remnants of a visit by newlyweds come to clasp hands through the hole. Their family and friends attend this modern rendition of a time-honored local practice, blissfully unmindful of earlier, more pagan activities at the site.
Knockanoura, Co. Clare
These are, in legend, a band of robbers turned to stone. As Mary Harrison explains, there was something so powerful about these stones that her frightened horses would not come near them.
Knockainey, Co. Limerick
This sacred hill of the fairy queen Áine, who was known as both sun goddess and love goddess, was a ceremonial site long before the first stirrings of a Celtic mythology. It remains sacred for some visitors today.
Ballyferriter, Co. Kerry
Near the town of Ballyferriter are two stone monuments vividly bringing into the landscape the stories of an enchanted cow whose milk was ever flowing. The Glas Gaibhnenn gave milk freely to all, until she was tricked by an evil woman.
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.