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Connemara, one of the finest wilderness areas surviving in Europe today, remains a bastion of traditional landscape and culture. The history of this landscape is ancient. It has taken over 750 million years to evolve. Its geology is one of the most complex and interesting in Europe. More recently the landscape has been shaped by a series of ice-ages or glaciation. The last cold period, when the mountains were…

By |November 30th, 2014|Packages|Comments Off on Connemara

Winter Walking Festival – December 27-29, 2014

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The Aran Islands

The Aran Islands lie at the mouth of Galway Bay off the south Connemara Coast and are among the most beautiful islands on Europe’s West Coast. The most vibrant of the Irish islands, they are still largely Gaelic speaking and rely heavily on fishing, small scale farming and tourism. Inis Mór, the largest of the three islands, is over nine miles long and is cliff bound along its entire…

By |July 15th, 2013|Packages|Comments Off on The Aran Islands

The Burren

The Burren uplands, described in 1681 by Thomas Dineley with the famous words “this Barony affordeth not a piece of timber sufficient to hang a man, water in any one place to drown a man, or earth enough in any part to bury him”, play host to what is arguably the richest archaeological landscape in western Europe.

The hills are crowned with dozens of prehistoric tombs and its high plateaus…

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Inishbofin is only a 40 minutes sea voyage from the fishing village of Cleggan off the NW Connemara Coast and is the largest of a small archipelago of islands, famed for its magnificent scenery, relaxed lifestyle and traditional music. With a population of 180, this beautiful island, five miles long by two miles wide, has a superb natural harbour guarded by a 17th century Cromwellian fortress.

To the west, lie…

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  • Drumlins from the air
  • Stone-Axe-Clifden

The Palaeolithic (Old Stone Age)

The Palaeolithic was the age of the earliest humans, the Neanderthals who spread out from Africa and inhabited Europe before the Ice Age and their successors and the Cro Magnon Man humans who created the famous cave paintings at Cheddar Gorge in England, Altamira in Northern Spain and Lascaux, Niaux, and elsewhere in France. (more…)

The Mesolithic (Middle Stone Age) c.8,000 BCE

Mesolithic hunter-gatherers were the first Irish people known to modern science, leaving traces of their stone tools, middens and base camps throughout the country and following the coastline and river and lake systems in search of food. (more…)

The Neolithic (New Stone Age) (c.6,000 Years Ago)

The Neolithic was the age of the first farmers, the creators of monumental and landscape architecture, whose field -systems have been discovered at Céide in Mayo and who built the great passage tombs of Newgrange, Knowth and Dowth. (more…)

The Copper and Bronze Ages (c.2,500BCE)

The Bronze Age was Ireland’s “Golden Age” when the new-found mastery of metals produced exquisite Bronze Axeheads and shields as well as precious gold torques and decorated discs including the famed Glenlisheen Gorget. (more…)

The Iron Age (c.800 BCE)

The Iron Age was remembered in later literature as Ireland’s Celtic Heroic Age, the time of Cú Chulainn, Queen Maeve and the old Gods who would be remembered as the Tuatha De Danann. (more…)

Early Christian Ireland (c.431 CE)

Early Christian Ireland was known as the Island of Saints and Scholars. Newly Christian monks created famous monasteries and churches and converted Northern Britain and much of Germany while producing beautiful manuscripts like the Books of Kells and Lindisfarne. (more…)

Viking Raiders (795 – 1014 CE)

From the late eighth to the early eleventh century Ireland was preyed upon by the Vikings; fierce pagan warriors and raiders from the north who founded Ireland’s first cities and opened up trade with the wider world. (more…)