Are you planning a trip to Ireland? Great! There are lots of things to see on this (for now) little part of the EU, and you’ve probably heard that Ireland has a pretty rich history. If you’re going to visit, the first thing you need to know is that the country is separated into 32 counties, each one a little different, and each one containing different wonders for the wayward traveler. Let’s take a look at some of the more interesting locations in Ireland that you might want to add to your itinerary.
Rock of Cashel
The Rock of Cashel has long been a staple of the Tipperary landscape, and it’s existed long before it was presented to the church in 1101. It had more secular roots, but now it is remembered as a center of ecclesiastical power, or at least until it was sieged by the Cromwellian army in 1647. Though it was certainly a religious center, you can see that it was clearly a medieval fortress by looking at the 90 foot round tower outside. It’s a tribute to a world long gone, and a great photo opportunity when you happen to be in the area.
This has been one of the most used religious landmarks in Ireland and an outstanding example of ‘If these walls could talk’. It’s amazing to think of all a building has gone through over the ages. To us it might just be a building, but if we could see everything that’s happened within those walls over the centuries we would be absolutely amazed. What we do know, is that this is actually the burial ground of St. Patrick, patron saint of Ireland (yes, that St. Patrick) and thousands of visitors make their way to this spot every year to see his final resting place.
The National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology
Within these walls you’re going to find some of Irelands most ancient artifacts, chronicling the last 9000 years of human progress and inhabitation. There is an outstanding example of prehistoric gold in the museum along with other artifacts that do a great job of documenting the way we lived before civilized society. The items date from 2200 to 500 BC, and one of the greatest collections is an assembly of weaponry along with an early illuminated Book of Psalms.
Walled cities had their time, and thought that time has passed, you might still be curious as to what they look like. Fortunately, Derry still stands, and it’s a great example of a walled city in Europe. The city was officially completed in 1618, and the 26 foot high walls along with the turrets and canons showcase an entirely different time in human history.
Don’t forget to check out these sites and many more on you trip through the Emerald Isle. It’s a great experience and a historical one at that.