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A Spiritual Journey Around Ireland

Start of the Croagh Patrick ascent trail - Statue of St Patrick - Mayo - Ireland Collpicto
Contiki Ireland
Ireland Map
Dublin main
bloody foreland co donegal
West Coast of Ireland Self Drive

A Spiritual Journey Around Ireland

story by: Jo Wedlock

From the mystic standing stones of the remote island of Iona through to the windswept bluffs of Donegal, there is something about these ancient mystical lands that make it exciting to think about taking a spiritual journey of discovery through Ireland and Scotland.

Coming from a ‘young’ country like New Zealand, we can often be unaware how thousands of years of history can influence the atmosphere, mood and background of a people and seep into the scenery, buildings, songs and folklore.

At House of Travel we get asked more and more by people wanting to travel to experience some of this history; to feel a part of something bigger than ourselves and participate in the Celtic traditions, music, food and of course ‘good craic’ (fun).  So we’ve put together some of the great spiritual journeys you can take in this Celtic wonderland to allow you to start to plan some of the things to incorporate into your journey.  Your House of Travel specialist can then take your ideas and help you build this into a holiday that just might change your outlook as well as your state of mind!

These are the ideas to base your holiday around if you’ve ever felt the desire to wander through the cobbled streets of Dublin, or browse its other historic cities. You will love the chance to experience the best of the city sights while also taking time out to investigate its spiritual hubs and the best of the East and West coasts of Ireland that make this Gaelic country a place where miracles truly do happen.

  • Take time in Dublin Ireland to undertake a gentle tour around Ireland’s popular and vibrant capital. Take time to have a relaxing day in the city with options of an easy walking tour, people watching and a spot of shopping in the famous Grafton Street.
  • Start the day with a traditional Irish breakfast before you enjoy a short drive to TARA, the magical hilltop home of Ireland’s high kings, Celtic warrior heroes, goddesses and powerful earth energies. Lunch at Bru na Boinne visitor centre should be included in your journey. Here at Newgrange, a 5000 year old living monument that still creates magic every winter solstice, you can learn how, before the pyramids, Irish spiritual knowledge was so advanced that other dimensions were able to be accessed. Take some time in the afternoon to drive west into the heart centre of Ireland, Visneach. This is the legendary burial site of the Goddess Eriu for who ERIN is named. Legend has it that stones from here were transported to Stonehenge by Merlin because of their healing powers.
  • Drive to Ireland’s magical west, where we visit the spectacular Cliffs of Moher with stunning views across the Atlantic – the very edge of the world. Nearby is a beautiful old St Bridget’s wall still used by locals looking for miracle cures. The eerie barren landscape and quaint county Clare villages are flowing with churches, megalithic sites and old monasteries will leaving you wondering exactly what century you’ve arrive in.
  • Enjoy the breathtaking scenery as you drive through Clare, Galway and Connemara with frequent stops for Ireland’s quirky purchases and photo opportunities. Take some time out to hear some legends and interesting stores from locals before you wander past lakes and mountains and arrive in pretty Westpoint for a relaxed evening. There are several renowned Irish psychics in this area so if you are inclined to do a reading they can cater for you either at your hotel or in their homes.
  • Take a drive to Croagh Patrick, Irelands’ sacred mountain and popular place of pilgrimage. This cone shaped mountain was widely visited in ancient times where it was connected to Lugh, God of Light. More recently (relatively speaking) St Patrick fasted for 40 days and nights on the summit and banished pagan demons in the form of snakes claiming the mountain for Christianity. This is the crown Chakra in Ireland’s landscape temple. Climbing Croagh Patrick takes about 5 hours if the weather is a bit “Irish’, or if climbing and a quartz mountain isn’t for you, then Westpoint is a charming place for shopping or exploring the area.  While in the area, take some time to visit Ballintubber Abbey, passing through Knock, which is famous for apparitions of Mary before heading through to Sligo.
  • Sligo is an absolute feast of fascinating stone circles, cairns, holy wells and megalithic monuments. Renowned for UFO sightings, strange phenomena, legendary battles and beautiful poetry, this region has something for everyone. In the afternoon you can travel North past stunning Benbulban and into Donegal – birthplace of Saint Columbus who brought Christianity into Europe. You need to stop for fabulous views from The Grianan of Aileach, a 4000 year old sun temple and Irelands ‘Camelot”. From here you can see Derry, Europe’s City of Culture 2013 – just across the UK boarder.
  • While in Derry, ensure you take an easy walking tour around this fascinating walled city with its colourful and troubled past. This was once St Columbus’s monastery and there are many ancient reminders of how this vibrant hilltop was once a holy island. Depending on weather and festival schedules, you can explore Donegal’s magical landscape or enjoy the music and Craic in Derry.
  • One of Tourism Irelands feather in the cap is a visit to the Giant's Causeway – or if you are not a scenery buff a visit to Bushmills (for a ‘different’ kind of spirit)
Be sure to check out the Spiritual Journey Around Scotland article, for more inspirational ideas.

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