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Ancient Monastic Sights

Fore Abbey

In a tranquil, green valley in the village of Fore, about a 30-minute drive from Mullingar in County Westmeath, visitors can view the site where St Fechin founded a Christian monastery in the 7th Century. It’s believed that before his death, 300 monks lived in the community. Later, the monastery was set fire 12 times. 
 
Among the remains, visitors can see St Fechin’s church, built about 900. They will also find one of the 18 Fore crosses, which are spread out over 10 kilometres on roadways and in fields. 
 
The Seven Wonders of Fore include, the monastery in the bog, the mill without a race, the water that flows uphill, the tree that has three branches/the tree that won’t burn, the water that won’t boil, the anchorite in a stone and the stone/lintel raised by St Fechin’s prayers.
 
Address: Fore, County Westmeath • Telephone: +353 (0)44 9661780

Clonmacnoise

An Early Christian site founded by St. Ciarán in the mid-6th century on the eastern bank of the River Shannon. The site includes the ruins of a cathedral, seven churches (10th  -13th century), two round towers, three high crosses and the largest collection of Early Christian graveslabs in Western Europe. The original high crosses and a selection of graveslabs are on display in the visitor centre. The long and varied history of Clonmacnoise is recounted in an audiovisual presentation shown in the visitor centre. There are also exhibitions that deal with the flora, fauna and landscape of the region.
 
Please note that this is a very busy site and visitors may experience a delay during the summer months.
 
Address: Clonmacnoise, Shannonbridge, Athlone, Co. Offaly.
Tel: +353 90 9674195.
Fax No: +353 90 9674273
For Bookings etc. please e-mail: clonmacnoise@opw.ie