Archive for the ‘Things to see’ Category

St. Connell’s Church

By on May 26, 2010 | Category: Local Info,Things to see | Tags: , , , , , , | No Comments

St. Connell’s Church, Glenties was designed by the architect, the late Mr. Liam Mc Cormick, Derry and was officially opened on Sunday 19th May 1974 by the Bishop of Raphoe, the late Bishop Anthony Mac Feely. Mr. Mc Cormick has won several awards for the design of his churches and he got an award for this church too.

Surrounded by trees, the Church echoes a feeling of encloure, its high pitched slated roof enclosing the building almost to the ground on both sides. The tall gable ends are white rough-cast. Mr. Mc Cormick makes three strong statements in the design of the Church. 1. Design blending with the environment. 2. The Role of Nature. 3. The Importance of Baptism.

St. Connell’s Church reflects the meeting of the two glens; the Big Glen and the Wee Glen. Na Gleanntai(The Glens) from which the town gets it’s name. The Church has a strong natural light coming mainly from the roof window and the low level window overlooking the landscape area. As we enter this beautilful Church we cross over water and this will remind us of Baptism, the gateway to the Eucharist.

St. Connells Cultural and Heritage Museum

By on May 26, 2010 | Category: Local Info,Things to see | Tags: , , , , | No Comments

The heritage centre is named after St. Connell Caol who, in the 6th Century founded a monastic settlement on Inniskeel Island, north of Portnoo near Glenties. The museum includes prison cells of the late 19th century courthouse and has many artefacts pertaining to the famine in South West Donegal. The museum is open throughout the year and guides are available.

Read the History of St. Connells Cultural and Heritage Museum here

Tel: +353 (0)74 9551766
Email: stconnellsmuseumglenties@gmail.com

Doon Fort

By on May 26, 2010 | Category: Local Info,Things to see | No Comments

Lough Doon Ring Fort is located on a small island in Lough Doon off the Portnoo to Rosbeg Road. It is an impressive 4.8m high walled enclosure, covering the small island completely, traditionally built 1000BC. During the holiday season (summer) there are small boats available for hire to allow access to the island for a closer look. This ancient ruin is evidence that this area has been inhabited for many centuries. In recent years the gold Lunula (a fine piece of decorative jewellery), dating from 1600BC approx., was found in this area and is displayed in the National Museum of Ireland. A replica of this can be seen in the Local Dolmen Centre.

Portal Tomb

By on May 26, 2010 | Category: Local Info,Things to see | Tags: , , , , , , , | No Comments

An exceptionally fine portal-tome or dolmen, prominent on the skyline 1/4 mile to the east of the main road, 4 miles north-north-west of Ardara. It well displays the classic features from which this type of monument derives its name. The matched portal stones and gracefully uptilted capstone (nearly 20 feet long and one of the largest in Ireland) oversailing the chamber entrance convey a sense of architectural awareness on the part of the builders and its streamlined profile has inspired numerous analogies; a bird, a fish, Concord, etc. depending on the imagination of the observer.

The tomb is substantially complete. A low sill-stone set between the 6 feet high portals closes off the chamber entrance. The lower end of the capstone does not rest directly on the back-stone as is usually the case, but is supported instead by a small intermediate stone whose function may have been to give increased height to the chamber. Fragments of undecorated Neolithic pottery were the only recorded finds.

A short distance west of this tomb is another similar construction but on a very much smaller scale. It is now partly collapsed. A modern field wall separates the two, which were evidently mounded over by the same east-facing cairn, traces of which remain.

Sheskinmore Nature Reserve

By on May 26, 2010 | Category: Local Info,Things to see | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | No Comments

Sheskinmore is regarded as one of the most important Nature Reserves in Ireland. It encompasses an area of approximately 1,000 acres, and is situated near Kiltoorish, Rosbeg, Co. Donegal.

Sheskinmore is open to the public all year round, and offers families & nature enthusiasts all the beautiful wonders of nature only to be found in Ireland

Wildlife between 15 – 20 different types of butterflies can be seen throughout the year. Green & White Front Barnacle geese, & Canadian geese can be seen in the winter time, when in April they migrate to Greenland for the summer. Ducks & swans all year round host Sheskin More as their home. Falcons : Merlin & pereqine, breed in Dawros Bay & Sliabh a Toughe, and hunt in Sheskin More

Badgers, Foxes & otters all run wild here. The Chuff is regarded as our most important native bird. It looks quite similar to a crow, but has a red beak & red legs.

Sheskinmore has many splendid types of flora & fauna. Its is renowned especially for the many different types of Orchids that grow there, such as the Bee Orchid, Butterfly Orchid, Frog Orchid These are very unusual species, & Sheskin More is the only place they grow in the Northwest region.

Directions

From Glenties
Drive along the Glenties-Portnoo road for approx. 6 miles. Then drive towards Ardara for 2 miles until you reach a signpost for Rosbeg. Turn right and drive along this road until you reach the Kiltoorish Lake on the left hand side . The entrance to Sheskin More is opposite this lake.

From Ardara
Drive along the main Ardara-Portnooroad for approx. 4 miles. Turn left towards Rosbeg at signposted junction. 200metres along this road, take a look into the field on the right hand side, and you can see one of the very few mini dolmens in Ireland located there! Drive along this road until you reach the Kiltoorish Lake on the left hand side . The entrance to Sheskin More is opposite this lake.

From Portnoo
Drive towards Ardara for 2 miles until you reach a signpost for Rosbeg. Turn right and drive along this road until you reach the Kiltoorish Lake on the left hand side . The entrance to Sheskin More is opposite this lake.

Iniskeel Island

By on May 26, 2010 | Category: Local Info,Things to see | Tags: , , , , , , | No Comments

The Island of Inniskeel has a sacred interest in the present and the past with a long, if broken, history to commemorate its former greatness. It is still the seat of a must-frequented pilgrimage in honour of St. Connell, one of the most remarkable of Ireland’s early Saints. It contains his Church and his cell and in it repose his scared remains in the grave that had first closed over the body of his illustrious friend, St. Dallan.

There seems to be no ground for questioning the popular belief that St. Connell founded the buildings, which still remain. At the same time substantial parts were certainly rebuilt at a later period.

The year of St. Connell’s birth is not known with exactness. He died about 596. His name is forever linked with famous Cain Domnaigh, a law prohibiting servile works on Sunday. The prohibition was from Vespers on Saturday evening to Monday morning and should delight the heart of sabbatarian by its exacting observance, did it not in other respects unmistakably savour of Catholic practice. In the “Yellow Book of Lecan” the Cain is prefaced by a statement of its being brought from Rome by St. Connell, on an occasion of a pilgrimage made by him to the Eternal City. Our chroniclers make two notable statements in regard to it. They say it was written by the hand of God in Heaven and placed on the Altar of St. Peter, and secondly that it was brought from Rome by St. Connell. Now, however, one may be inclined to explain away either or both statements, there is no mistaking the avowal of respect they imply for Roman authority nor any serious reason for calling the pilgrimage itself into question. The Cain Domnaigh was never enacted by the states or councils of Erin. That it was believed to have been brought from Rome sufficed to spread its sway.

Dallan was born in Feallach Eatbach, which is taken to be Tullyhain in Cavan. Nothing that parental care could accomplish was left undone to perfect his education in scared and secular subjects. At an early age in his career he lost the use of his eyes. Notwithstanding this dismal failure he became the most eminent man of letters in Ireland. He was antiquarian, philosopher, rhetorician and poet all in one. He was the literary chief, the file laureat of Erin in his day. A saint’s life and a martyr’s death crown the glory of his fame. His best known works are the “Amhra Coluim Cille” or written panegyric on Columcille, a funeral oration on St. Senan, Bishop of Inniscattery, and a panegyric on St. Connell Coel. He was beheaded by pirates who plundered the island. His death occurred about 594. St. Dallan’s Feast occurs on the 29th January. The island is accessible on foot during low tide from Narin beach.

Narin / Portnoo Beach

By on May 26, 2010 | Category: Local Info,Things to see | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments

Narin is a sheltered cove beach approximately 2km long on the Atlantic coast of Ireland. Approximately 2km from Portnoo, 8km from Ardara or 10km from Glenties this impressive Blue Flag beach has safe waters for bathing and is attended by a lifeguard during the summer months. There are toilet facilities near the beach with ample parking also available. Local shops, bars and restaurants are within walking distance and there are three well-maintained caravan sites close to the strand area.

An extensive sandy beach in a rural environment. The beach is backed by an extensive and majestic sand dune system with a well defined primary dune ridge. The coastal area here is a designated NHA exhibiting a highly diverse range of both coastal and terrestrial habitats.

The beach at Narin can be found by travelling north on the R261 from Ardara and heading towards the village of Narin.

Lifeguard

Lifeguards are on duty in July and August everyday between 12.00 noon and 6.30pm.

First Aid

A First Aid kit is available at the Beach Lifeguard Hut-12.00 and 6.30pm or Cunninghams Pub

Although the village faces north into the Atlantic the hills to the west on Dunmore Head offer very welcome protection. The rocks on the shore near the pier tell the story of how this part of Donegal was formed, millions of years ago: you can see slates run through with veins of granite, and black crystalline limestone showing the effects of millennia of erosion by rain and sea spray.

Looking out to sea the first sight is the island of Inishkeel, Inis Caoil in Gaelic, which gives its name to the local parish, including the town of Glenties. Beyond Inishkeel one can see the estuary of the Gweebarra River and the southern edge of the Rosses. When the tide is low one can walk from Narin out to the island which is named after Conall Caol, the sixth century saint who is associated with many other places in the southwest of the county. The tide allows you around an hour to visit the sites, before walking back again. It is well worth a visit, with its early Christian churches, holy wells and beautifully decorated stone slabs.

Famine Graveyard

By on May 26, 2010 | Category: Local Info,Things to see | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments

Directly behind Ard Patrick housing estate is the site of the Famine Graveyard. To enter the graveyard, one must drive up into the housing estate an d there you will find and entrance between the first phase of houses built and the new houses (which have a porch). In 1997 the grounds of the graveyard was repaired and a headstone was erected in commemoration of these people who died during the Great Famine (1846-1849). The Comprehensive school is situated on the grounds of the ‘Old Hospital’ and the ‘Workhouse’ was situated where the first phase of houses are built.

During the time of the Famine, this Workhouse was a very important place in our town.The Famine was due to the failure of the potato crop, by a disease called “Blight”. At that time the main food taken was potatoes, and bread if the flour was available. This also became a problem as the flour got scarce.

In 1847 the famine had got so bad and that there were men roaming the countryside begging for food. The “Workhouse” became so overcrowded, which made the living conditions dreadful, causing a fever to spread rapidly. There was no ventilation,no food, not enough straw to make beds on the floor, and because the “Workhouse” was built on low ground it sometimes used to flood, causing a dreadful smell. This led to the death rate being one of the highest in the country. When these people died they were buried in the “Famine Graveyard”.

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