Thursday, 4 July 2013


Today was better weather than yesterday so we decided we would tackle the climb of the Knocknarea hill (Irish: Cnoc na Rí ) to see Miosgan Meadhbha - Maeve's Cairn a neolithic passage tomb.  The cairn is 55 metres wide by 10 metres high and has never been excavated. Totally dominating the Cuil Irra peninsula. Folklore suggest that it was built for the mythical Maeve the Iron Age Queen of Connaught.

Before we headed off we walked through the village of Sligo to get breakfast passing the Garavogue River.

The Glasshouse Hotel on the left where we are staying

Knocknarea Mountain with Maeve's Cairn on top

Feeling very victorious after such a climb to reach the top
Standing on top of the cairn shows you just how enormous it is

The views are just spectacular for 360o

 After our walk we drove to Glencar Waterfall passing a lovely lake on to the way.

"There is a waterfall...that all my childhood counted dear," wrote Yeats of the silver stream that tumbles into Glencar Lough, County Leitrim, Ireland in his famous Stolen Child poem. The area has remained untouched in the last forty years. The main feature of the area, besides the lake itself, is the picturesque Glencar Waterfall. Springing out of the very side of Benbulben, the waterfall is neither very tall (50ft high), nor very wide, yet it captivates and holds every person that visits.

We then made our way to Creevykeel Court Cairn the largest court cairn in Ireland. Dating from the Neolithic Period, 4000-2500 BCE, the tomb was excavated in 1935 and shortly afterwards restored. The excavations uncovered four cremation burials, decorated and undecorated Neolithic pottery, flint arrow heads, polished stone axes and other artifacts, including a chalk ball. The cairn is trapezoidal in shape and about 50 metres in length. The front of the cairn is about twenty metres across. There is a narrow entrance passage, lined with orthostats, almost 5 metres in length leading to the large oval court. The court is also lined with orthostats that rest on the surface rather than sitting in sockets. At the north west of the court is a two chambered gallery. At the rear of the cairn there are three subsidiary chambers built into the cairn. Inside the court area a later kiln was built and during excavations evidence of iron-smelting was found .

We drove north to Mullaghmore on the Atlantic Ocean before heading home for the night.

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