Sunday, 19 April 2015

Discover IRELAND: County SLIGO (Part I)

From County Galway where we spent the night before driving further west and northwest, we finally reached County Sligo: a coastal seaport and the regional capital of the northwest of Ireland, and the Mr's hometown. 

As it wasn't my first time, I already have a few local favourite spots. One of our very first stops was Mullaghmore where you'll find Mullaghmore Head, discovery point along the Wild Atlantic Way route.

Here, you can park, listen to the ocean, the water splashing against the rocks, or even lay a blanket and have a picnic when the sun is out, which is indeed a blessing in this part of the world. 

Above is Parke's Castle which is like a favourite relative that I never fail to visit when I'm in town.

Some may find it bizarre, but the peace and quiet in cemeteries and graveyards attract me. This one at St. Columba's Parish Church in Drumcliffe is extra special as the 1923 awardee of the Nobel Prize for Literature, W.B. Yeats, chose this as his resting place. 

Tiptoeing over the wall

Cast a cold Eye
On Life, on Death
Horseman, pass by!
-"Under Ben Bulben", W.B. Yeats

Born and raised in County Dublin, W.B. Yeats only spent occasional holidays as a child and a few more as an adult in Sligo. But the beauty and magnificence of the county haven't escaped him. He died in France, was buried there, but according to his wife Georgie, his wish was to be buried quickly without a fuss in France, then for his remains to be moved to Sligo after a year when the newspapers have forgotten about him.  He and wife Georgie share this final resting place.

St. Columba's Church was built in 1809 from stones of the old monastery that Columba founded in 574. A 10th century High Cross carved with biblical scenes can be found by the entrance to the church. 

The church has a tiny door that opens into a compact worship area with pews, pillars and box in pine. The altar greets parishioners with a mural which reads, "Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God Almighty", and "Do this in Remembrance of Me".

The Irish have given the world some literary and musical geniuses. When in Ireland, one must come and see and hear  some live traditional Irish music. Accompanied by a sumptuous meal and Guinness at Austie's in Rosses Point, these young musicians played out some tunes, which, although I'm not familiar with, certainly warmed to my musical ears. 

Here's a short clip. Apologies for the constant movement of the waiting staff. It was buzzing that night.

If you missed the first two features of my Discover Ireland series, please click on these links:

Discover IRELAND: Dublin, Gateway to the West

Discover IRELAND: Kilkenny and Waterford

See you next time!


  1. If you ever tire of your current work, you could always consider being a tourist guide because you do so well being a virtual one. Like I said before I've never really been able to venture around Ireland, despite my first name being Irish (hee hee). I'm not a fan of graveyards if i'm honest, but I totally get why people would feel at peace there; it's a a perfect time for thought and reflection. I realized this when we were in Florence and did just that. Hope you're having a good weekend x

  2. Just splendid bliss, what an amazing look out!! Love Yeats as well :) xx


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