Massy’s Wood, Kilakee
Apr16

Massy’s Wood, Kilakee

A short distance from the Hell Fire Club Massy woods once surrounded a beautiful stately home known as Kilakee House. The original house was sadly demolished in the 1940’s after the family came into debt after 1924. On first look all that seems to remain today are the front steps of the house, the main gates, outlying buildings, remnants of greenhouses, gate lodges and ice houses. But take a closer look and you’ll notice...

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Walks in Wicklow: Glendalough
Mar19

Walks in Wicklow: Glendalough

“Gleann dá locha”; The Glen of the two lakes, was carved into the Wicklow landscape by glacial activity. Standing in the graveyard in the lands surrounding the lower lake you can easily imagine a time when this was a very important, bustling place with a busy monastic centre including churches, farmhouses, workshops, guesthouses and monastic cells at its height in the 9th Century. Founded in early 600ad by Saint Kevin, visiting here,...

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Powerscourt House and Gardens, Co Wicklow
Mar08

Powerscourt House and Gardens, Co Wicklow

Powerscourt House and Gardens is located in Enniskerry, County Wicklow in the most picturesque natural surrounds. It is reported that Powerscourt House was built upon the remnants of a two storey strategic 13th century castle originally built by the la Poer family, a Norman family. The estate is so very intertwined with Irish history and the history of the local area. Richard Wingfield, Viscount Powerscourt, and then owner of the...

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Suburban Dublin, Drimnagh Castle
Mar06

Suburban Dublin, Drimnagh Castle

Just over three miles from Dublin City Centre is Drimnagh Castle built in the early 13th century. The castle was originally granted to a Norman family the De Berneval’s. It is the only fully moated castle in Ireland supplied by the Bluebell River. The castle was built as a defensive outpost following the Anglo-Norman invasion of Ireland. Irish clans, usurped from their lands by the Normans had retreated to the Dublin and Wicklow...

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Phoenix Park Dublin
Feb27

Phoenix Park Dublin

The best thing about living in Dublin is that you are a stones throw away from the sea and the mountains, offering quick escape from the busyness of the city. The city centre itself has many green spaces such as the famous Stephen’s Green and the secluded Iveagh Gardens. But the jewel above all else is the beloved Phoenix Park. Known affectionately as “the Phoeno” or just, “The Park” and steeped in...

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Thatched Cottages Kilmore Quay, Co Wexford
Feb19

Thatched Cottages Kilmore Quay, Co Wexford

Kilmore Quay still retains it’s 19 century traditional thatched cottages in all their splendour. Traditionally thatcher’s used natural materials that could be sourced locally, for example water reeds by the river Slaney, wheat reed or straw from the farm. There are various designs that can be chosen for a thatched roof. The ridge of the roof can be very decorative or simple. Designs can be flush, block cut, bobbin, wrap...

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Saint Valentine and Whitefriar Street Church Dublin
Feb04

Saint Valentine and Whitefriar Street Church Dublin

John Spratt, an Irish Carmelite and local of Cork Street, Dublin was reportedly a great orator and strong supporter of the local poor. He had studied theology and philosophy in Spain before his return to Dublin in 1822. In 1825 he acquired lands on which to build a church. The lands had once been held by the Carmelite Order in medieval Dublin pre Reformation. The church was finalised in 1827. Designed by George Papworth, a noted...

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Imbolc
Feb03

Imbolc

February 4th is the midpoint between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. At this time of year it is thought that the pre-Celtic ancients of Ireland celebrated Imbolc. The festival is thought to have celebrated the birth of spring and rebirth of the land. Imbolc was one of the four cross quarterly festivals along with Bealtaine, Lughnasa, and Samhain. The Mound of Hostages in Tara aligns with the rising sun at this time of year...

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From Darkness into Light, Winter Solstice
Dec31

From Darkness into Light, Winter Solstice

This year the winter solstice in Ireland takes place at 8.58am GMT on Tuesday the 22nd of December. It will be the shortest day of the year and the longest night. Solstice literally means “Sun Stands Still”.  This is the suns lowest point of inclination in the northern hemisphere, where to ancient peoples, it would have appeared to stand still for days until it ascended by degrees back into their skies from the solstice...

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Hellfire Club Archaeological Dig Under Way
Oct10

Hellfire Club Archaeological Dig Under Way

We recently visited the Hellfire Club in Dublin to savour the views of the city on a clear Sunday autumn day. We were very excited to hear about the current archaeological dig taking place at the site. We’ve written about the Hellfire Club here on liveireland; its history & popularity for day time excursions. What strikes you about Montpelier hill is that the site must have been of significant importance due to its relative...

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