Places to see in Galway area
The Cliffs of Moher
The Cliffs of Moher are Ireland"s most visited natural attraction with a magical vista that captures the hearts of up to one million visitors each year. Standing 214m (702 feet) at their highest point they stretch for 8 kilometers (5 miles) along the Atlantic coast of County Clare in the West of Ireland. From the Cliffs of Moher on a clear day one can see the Arann Islands and Galway Bay, as well as the Twelve Pins and the Maum Turk mountainsin Connemara, Loop Head to the south and the Dingle Peninsula and Blasket Islands in Kerry. O"Brien"s Tower stands near the highest point and has served as a viewing point for visitors for hundreds of years.
The story of Kylemore – both Castle and Abbey – is a truly remarkable one. The twists of fate which its occupants experienced, from moments of romance and happiness, to sadness and courage have all combined to create a fascinating history spanning over 150 years.Kylemore is home to a community of nuns of the Benedictine Order who came here in 1920 after their abbey in Ypres, Belgium was destroyed in World War I. Settling at Kylemore, the Benedictine Community opened a world renowned boarding school for girls and began restoring the Abbey, Gothic Church and Victorian Walled Garden to their former glory.Kylemore Abbey & Victorian Walled Garden welcomes visitors to discover the magic, beauty and peacefulness of Kylemore Abbey. Visit Kylemore Abbey and discover what makes Kylemore the no.1 must-see attraction in Connemara and the west of Ireland.
Bunratty Castle & Folk Park
Bunratty Castle is one of the finest surviving examples of an Irish tower house. Although it is hard to believe that the castle has had a bloody and violent history. Its strategic position on the river Shannon made it the centre of many a battle, and it has it has been destroyed and re-built on at least eight occasions.
The Folk Park adjoins the castle and aims to show what everyday life was like in rural Ireland about 100 years ago. It contains reconstructed farmhouses, cottages and shops, and care has been taken to make them as authentic as possible, particularly with regard to furnishings.
The Park is a living museum : animals are tended, bread is baked, milk is churned, walls are whitewashed and roofs are thatched. You may visit an Irish farmhouse, watch the blacksmith fit a horseshoe, attend a weaving demonstration, and bake and eat scones at the local tea house. The village also reflects the fundamental changes that led to increased mobility.
Coole Park was once the home of Lady Augusta Gregory, dramatist, folklorist and co-founder of the Abbey Theatre with Edward Martyn of Tullira Castle and Nobel prize-winning poet William Butler Yeats. Coole Park, in the early 20th century, was the centre of the Irish Literary Revival. Yeats, George Bernard Shaw, John Millington Synge and Sean O" Casey all came to experience its magic. They and many others carved their initials on the Autograph Tree, an old beech still standing today. Although the house no longer stands, one can still appreciate the surroundings that originally drew so many here.
There are two trails to follow. "The Family Trail" is an easy 1.75 km walk, taking you past the deer pen, the site of the house and into the walled garden to see the Autograph Tree.
The 4.5 km "Seven Woods Trail" connects the different woods made famous in poetry by W.B. Yeats. Depending on the season, you might see bluebells and violets, jays and treecreepers, red squirrels and stoats, butterflies and dragonflies, or swans and other wetland birds.
"The trees are in their autumn beauty,
The woodland paths are dry,
Under the October twilight the water
mirrors a still sky;"