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.
Termon, Co. Donegal
The Rock of Doon is a craggy eminence with a storied past and a glorious panoramic view. On its flat summit there was reputed to be an inauguration ceremony in which the tribal leader was joined symbolically with the powers of nature during a brutal pagan rite.
Slane, Co Meath
In 1699 the proprietor of the townland of New Grange needed stones for building. He dug into the scrub-covered mound on his land and soon discovered the mouth of a “cave.” What he found was Ireland’s most significant archaeological treasure. Newgrange is one of the oldest buildings in the world.
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.
Ballymascanlon House, Co. Louth
This site may be unique in Ireland as the only ancient monument likely to hide a golf ball hit into the rough. It is situated just off the sixth hole at the Ballymascanlon House Hotel golf course.
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.
Howth, Co. Dublin
Nineteenth-century antiquarian Samuel Ferguson believed it to be the grave of the legendary Aideen, who died of grief when her husband Oscar was slain in battle. Ferguson commemorated the site in his lavishly illuminated poetic work, The Cromlech on Howth.
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.
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.