Gathering History and Heritage Tour Highlights
Posted by Niamh Allabyrne on the 11th of April 2013 at 12:45:56
The year of The Gathering is certainly underway with lots of festivals taking place from the Redhead Convention in Cork to the O’Donnell Clan Gathering in Donegal and the Riverdance Gathering in Dublin. 2013 is shaping up to be a busy year with all these festivals and fiestas, concerts and carnivals, gatherings and good times all infused with the music, stories, histories and beauty of Ireland and the charm and wit of her peoples. So if you thinking of coming to Ireland - make this year is the year you do it!!
And here at tourireland.com we are just as excited about The Gathering as everyone else is and so have created some tours which showcase our wonderful country from the vibrancy of Dublin to the calms and mystical beauty of Connemara, the sounds and sights of gregarious Galway City to the exhilarating Atlantic winds atop the Cliffs of Moher. And as if you need to be tempted anymore, here are some of my highlights on our Gathering History and Heritage Tour!
Newgrange – predating the Egyptians and Stonehenge this Stone Age Passage Tomb is the world’s oldest solar observatory thanks to the ingenuity of its architects who ensured that on the winter solstice on December 21st each year, the rising sun would illuminate the tomb through a small opening. Mystical and magical, this should not be missed. The view from the site is phenomenal and as you gaze upon the Meath countryside you can see numerous grassy mounds dotting the landscape and you realise that you are standing in the middle of pre-historic man’s landscape and it is really is an overwhelming feeling – not to be missed!!
Cliffs of Moher– one of my favourite spots in Ireland, Windswept certainly, cold almost definitely – but where in the world would you see such beautiful cliffs with the wild Atlantic stretching out before you. Captivating you from your first glimpse of these famous cliffs, these really are a must see on any trip to Ireland! Breath-taking!!
Kilkenny Castle – Kilkenny City itself is arguably the best example of medieval city you will find in Ireland with its meandering streetscapes packed with history and heritage at every twist and turn. No visit to this gorgeous city would be complete without a visit to Kilkenny Castle with over 9 centuries of life breathing through its very foundations! The audio-visual should not be missed either as it really puts the power and prestige of the castle into full context. After all this learning, wander across to the Kilkenny Design Centre in its grounds and indulge in some eats and retail therapy!
Dublin City – a Dubliner born and bred, it is probably no surprise that I have added my city to the tours highlights – however, Ireland’s capital should always be included in any tour of Ireland! The country’s second oldest city (after Waterford), her streets reverberate with a 1,000 years of history – with the Vikings, Normans and English all leaving their mark on this exciting city, you a really are walking in historical footsteps. With great museums and heritage centre, shops and markets, pubs, clubs and restaurants all mixed with the Dublin wit – hear the language of Joyce, feel the beat of U2 and see a millennium of history in this Fair City.
Adare Village – Thatched cottages are synonymous with Ireland and Adare Village has certainly cornered this market! Known as Ireland’s prettiest village - the tagline is most certainly correct! Dating from Norman times, Adare has been home to the Earls of Dunraven for over 300 years and today this wealth of history has been blended into the architecture of this wonderful town, where perfect thatched cottages stand near medieval monasteries and ruins. Many of the thatched cottages are privately owned (although some are commercial ventures) and have survived for centuries. It is like stepping back in time in Adare and with some great restaurants and shops – make sure you include Adare as a stop!!
So what are you waiting for – come home to Ireland in 2013 and book our Gathering History and Heritage Tour today!! There are lots of events and festivals on during the exciting year of The Gathering from film festivals to food festivals, music to dance!