Greetings from Ireland and a very happy Easter to all! I am happy to report that I write from a sunny Ireland and it looks like the weather will hold for the holiday weekend! So this week I’m taking you on a tour of my favourite Irish churches. Ireland is home to an abundance of beautiful churches, cathedrals and oratories. I have chosen my list of hidden gems in remote locations surrounded by stunning scenery. I recommend trying to visit at least one of them if you’re planning a trip to Ireland this year. So let’s buckle up and get on the road!
Lulu’s Top 7 Irish Churches
1. Dunlewey Church
First stop County Donegal. Dunlewey Church nestles at the foot of Mount Errigal in the heart of the Poisoned Glen. The scenery here is truly breathtaking. Errigal slopes down on one side while Lake Dunlewey shimmers on the other. Stunning.
2. Coolcarrigan Church
Coolcarrigan Church in Nass, Co Kildare dates back to 1881. It is built in a stunning woodland setting surrounded by a circular dry moat and can only be entered by passing through a lychgate. It’s remoteness and tranquility add to the beauty of the building itself.
3. Gallarus Oratory
The Gallarus Oratory stands handsomely amid farmland on the Dingle Peninsula in Co Kerry. A place of worship for early Christian farmers of the area. Shaped like an upside-down boat, the simple dry-stone structure has remained waterproof to the present day. The building stands in perfect condition. A beautiful structure surrounded by the rural and picturesque beauty of Dingle.
4. Gougane Barra Church
Gougane Barra Church lies west of Macroom in Kenmare Bay, Co Cork. The church dates back to around 1700. During the times of the Penal Laws, Gougane Barra’s remoteness made it a popular place for the celebration of the Catholic Mass. Famous for it’s picturesque location and richly decorated interior.
5. Croagh Patrick’s Summit Chapel
So next we’re off to the gorgeous county Mayo. Croagh Patrick overlooks the stunning Clew Bay in County Mayo. The mountain is famous for its annual Patrician Pilgrimage in honour of Saint Patrick. It is said that Saint Patrick fasted for forty days in 441 at this very place. A place of worship has existed here since the time of St. Patrick. The current chapel dates back to 1905. The views from here are spectacular.
6. Saint Kevin’s Kitchen Church
Time to head eastwards now to County Wicklow. St Kevin’s is situated in the stunning Glendalough. The small round tower is one of the very few intact structures still standing at this ancient monastic site. The tower resembles a chimney, hence the nickname “kitchen church”.
7. Ballintoy Church
Our final stop takes us all the way up to the stunning Antrim coast. Ballintoy Church was founded by the Stewart family who settled on the north coast in 1560. The distinctive white church on the hill above the harbour commands majestic views. Giant’s Causeway is only about an hour away so well worth a stop off if you’re exploring that part of the country.
Well that’s all from for this week. Have a wonderful Easter weekend!
Slán go fóill!