aliisaacstoryteller

Planning Your Visit to Ireland? Stop by a Holy Well

After all, we have plenty of them. Most of our holy wells are nowadays named after famous and beloved Christian saints, mostly Patrick and Bridget, but also some others, too. Personally, I think these were sacred springs long… Read More

Were There Giants in Ancient Ireland?

You might think that Irish mythology is full of giants, what with Fionn building the Giant’s Causeway, and the number of ancient stone monuments named ‘The Giant’s Bed/ Leap/ Grave’, but you’d be wrong. There is, however, a specific reason why giants exist in local Irish folklore.

Manannán’s Land Irish Myths of the Sea

Being a small island, peoples lives have been dominated by the sea. In mythology, the Danann, the Milesians, and various other races came to Ireland from the sea. According to legend, Ireland had two sea deities: Lir, and Manannán mac Lir, which means ‘son of Lir’, or ‘son of the sea’.

Burren. Ballyvaughan.

Gleninagh Castle, Co Clare | The Wild Atlantic Way

Gleninagh comes from the Irish Gleann Eidhneach, which means ‘valley of ivy’. The castle itself stands overlooking Galway Bay, in the shadow of the Black Head, called in Irish Ceann Boirne, which means ‘Burren Head’. Gleninagh Castle was the stronghold of… Read More

Corcomroe Abbey, The Wild Atlantic Way.

Corcomroe Abbey | The Wild Atlantic Way

The Abbey takes its name from an ancient tribe whom once ruled the Burren, known as Corcamruadh, from the Irish Cor, a ‘district’, Cam, a ‘quarrel’, and Ruaidh, meaning ‘red’. The Red Book of Kilkenny states that in 1194, Domhnall Mór O’Brien, King of Munster and great-great-great grandson of Brian Boru, founded the monastery for Cistercian monks, and dedicated it to the Virgin Mary.

Burren. Closer view of typical stone wall, well weathered

Newtown Castle, Co Clare | The Wild Atlantic Way

Towards the end of our first day’s hiking in Co Clare, we came down off the tops and walked along a quiet country lane into Ballyvaughan, and came across this strange looking building… Newtown Castle is a C16th… Read More

The limestone karst of the burren. A closer look at the clints and grikes.

St Colman’s Holy Well, Co Clare | The Wild Atlantic Way

For me, the isolated well on a barren rugged hillside that took effort and determination to reach, that’s the one which fascinates me. Getting there is part of the devotion; it feels like you have earned the right to be there, and the healing which may come of being there. St Colman’s Holy Well is exactly one such place.

Burren karst limestone landscape

Legends of the Burren | The Wild Atlantic Way

Last weekend, I hiked part of the Burren Trail with my friend, walking buddy and guide, Jenni. The Burren is an expanse of karst landscape located in Co Clare, stretching some 250 km between the villages of Ballyvaghan, Kinvara,… Read More