The Burren, County Clare

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  • Ballyvaughan
    Ballyvaughan
    by MalenaN
  • Ballyalban Earthen Ring Fort
    Ballyalban Earthen Ring Fort
    by MalenaN
  • House with a double door in Ballyvaughan
    House with a double door in Ballyvaughan
    by MalenaN
  • MalenaN's Profile Photo

    High Crosses in Kilfenora

    by MalenaN Written Mar 28, 2013

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    The Doorty Cross
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    Kilfenora is a small village with the ruins of a very small cathedral from the 12th century. Already in the 6th century a monastery was founded on the place where the ruined cathedral stands. Once Kilfenora was an important place for pilgrims, but now it is known for its high crosses.

    There are three high crosses in the church yard, protected under roof. One of them is the Doorty Cross which is 800 years old. We got around 10 minutes to visit this place, but we were not told that in a nearby field, about 100 metres away, there is another high cross.

    In the chancel there are two medieval tombs with carved figures on top. In one of them an unknown bishop is buried and in the other one a nobleman or cleric.

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    Ballyalban Earthen Ring Fort

    by MalenaN Written Apr 1, 2013

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    Ballyalban Earthen Ring Fort
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    Our next stop was at Ballyalban Earthen Ring Fort, a circular structure with earth banks. Those earthen rings were often topped by a wooden palisade in old times. Sometimes they are referred to as Fairy forts. We only got around 5 minutes here, just enough time to take a walk around the circle.

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    • Archeology

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    A brief stop in Ballyvaughan

    by MalenaN Written Apr 1, 2013

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    View from Ballyvaughan
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    Ballyvaughan is a village in the north western corner of the Burren. It is situated on the south shores of Galway Bay and lots of tourists pass here on their way to the Burren and Cliffs of Moher. We made a short stop at a pub in Ballyvaughan so that people who wanted could use the bathroom. We were also encouraged to buy something to drink, or a snack, in the pub. The bus driver said it was okay to bring back coffee on the bus as long as the cup had a lid on it.

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    Kilfenora & the Doorty Cross

    by globetrott Updated Sep 20, 2005

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    the Doorty Cross in Kilfenora
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    Kilfenora is my favorite place in the Burren for an interesting church-ruin and the very special Celtic Cross on my picture: the Doorty Cross, showing a bishop and 2 other people. Kilfenora has also quite a funny status inside the catholic church, because that small parish is at the same time an episcopate and their bishop is the pope - don't ask me, how this works, it is just a heritage of the 12th century that was never changed since...
    On my other pictures about the church in Kilfenora you may see some of the very few great works of art that are still left over after the church had been destroyed several times.
    At the small cemetery around the old cathedral-ruins there were once 7 high-crosses - see another one on my 5th picture !
    You may enter the cemetery freely and without restrictions during the day !

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    • Arts and Culture
    • Religious Travel

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  • globetrott's Profile Photo

    Kilfenora & the Burren-Centre

    by globetrott Updated Sep 20, 2005

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    the Burren close to Poulnabroone Dolmen

    In Kilfenora, close to the cemetery you may visit an interesting museum : The Burren Centre. There you see exhibits about the special flora and fauna of the Burren and get a good idea, what the Burren looks like underneath the surface.
    Maybe it is best to start to explore the museum in the "Burren-Centre" first, before you enter the landscape of the Burren, so you have an idea already about the special and most interesting facts of that unique geological formation.
    Something that you will realize, when walking over the rocks of the Burren is the special sound that it makes, when you hit the stones by your shoes, maybe you even find a hammer or other tool in your car...
    Of course it is forbidden to take any stones home, BUT knocking on the rocks is not at all forbidden !!

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  • globetrott's Profile Photo

    Don't miss the Burren , when you are at the Cliffs

    by globetrott Updated Sep 19, 2005

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    the Burren
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    The "Burren" is a unique landscape, covered by vulcanic rocks, that seem to be artificially cut into giant cubes of different sizes, and inside the many gaps between these rocks you will find a big variety of tropical, subtropical, alpine and mediterranean plants and flowers.
    NO-where else in the whole world you may find these plants growing togeather in a natural environment !
    It is the combination of the grey rocks and the colorfull flowers that make the special atmosphere of the "Burren
    Once in the Burren I was lucky to be able to watch a professional photographer taking pics of 2 vintage-cars there for the official Mercedes-calender.

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    • Hiking and Walking
    • Adventure Travel
    • Eco-Tourism

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  • Cruefan's Profile Photo

    The Burren.. errie beauty

    by Cruefan Written Jun 3, 2005

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    The Burren

    I visited the Burren just after the Cliffs of Moher and it was a big contrast. The Burren is a very quiet place and I saw more sheep than people. The Burren is limestone that extends for miles and turns into moutains that border the ocean.

    We drove along the narrow roads I noticed that May is a great time to visit because wildflowers grown between the limestone rocks. It's something you have to experience to fully appreciate it.

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  • kit_mc's Profile Photo

    The Burren Lunar Landscape

    by kit_mc Written Aug 12, 2006

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    The Burren
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    This area of Ireland is often given as being second only to the Giant's Causeway in a listing of the natural sights of Ireland to see. I have to admit that in certain ways I prefer the mountains of Wicklow to the views here, but that may just be a bit of childhood nostalgia at work.

    The Burren consists of a rocky landscape, basically large areas of limestone 'pavement'. This really is the green, green land of rolling hills, dry stone walls and abandoned houses, churches and watchtowers that typify many people's idealised views of Ireland.

    Various sights along the way include neolithic tombs such as the Poulnabrone Dolmen (A Tomb Portal Stone) a good stop off site for those pics of the lunar pavement.

    The rocky nature of this area does make this rural landscape that bit more interesting than your average country drive!

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    The Burren

    by Dabs Written Jul 26, 2009

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    Burren wildflowers
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    After our stop at the Cliffs of Moher, we continued on through the area of County Clare known as the Burren. The "forty shades of green" immortialized by Johnny Cash vanished and was replaced by a landscape that seemed almost lunar in composition. The name Burren comes from the Irish word bhoireann which means rocky place and it's a fitting name as the surrounding landscape is made almost entirely of limestone rocks. What is surprising though are all of the wildflowers that somehow find something to grow in, many of them quite rare.

    We didn't stop here long, maybe 10 minutes or so off the bus, but The Burren is quite large and we got to see quite a bit of it as we made our way to Galway.

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    The Burren Perfumery

    by donpaul77 Updated Jan 25, 2010

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    flowers in the burren

    If you are exploring the Burren and like to shop for things that are indigenous to an area, then it's worth stepping a little out your way to visit the Burren Perfumery. The perfumery is a bit hidden in the heart of that rocky expanse. Here they create unique fragrances that are inspired by the sights and smells of Ireland. The subtle fragrances evoke feelings for nature and the seasons. They make men's fragrances as well as women's which can make a nice gift for that special someone ;)

    There is a short film you can watch about the Burren and the perfumery.

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  • chrissyalex's Profile Photo

    The Burren

    by chrissyalex Written Apr 26, 2003

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    The Burren

    The Burren is a very barren limestone plateau located in northwest county Clare. It is rather large and covers over a hundred square miles. It is a stark contrast to the lush green areas found in many other parts of Ireland. There are interesting Stone Age burial monuments in this region as well.
    Another very unique thing about this area is that in the spring ,both Arctic and Mediterranean wildflowers grow here side by side.

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    THE BURREN

    by hevbell Updated Nov 20, 2003

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    Poulnabrone Dolmen

    The Burren covers quite a bit of ground in Co Clare and Galway and the landscape is really unusual. Burren derives from the Irish for "rocky country" [Boireann*] and the area is covered in polished limestone that appeared after errosion of the thin top soil which started some 6000 years ago with the first farmers. Despite the lack of soil the area is well known for the enormous number of unusual plants that make use of what rich soil there is between the rocks.

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  • Krumel's Profile Photo

    The Burren

    by Krumel Written Jun 28, 2003

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    Burren Landscape

    Ever wondered what it might look like on the moon? Go to the Burren in County Clare and you might get the idea. One of Cromwell's officers said about the area: "Not enough water to drown a man, no tree to hang a man and no soil to bury him".

    The Burren is a desert of limestone on the Atlantic coast formed in the ice age by receding glaciers. These left behind seeds of arctic, alpine and mediterranean plants behind which grow in the cracks and fissures. Do not collect them, though. All plants and wildlife are protected. Picking of flowers is an offence.

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    The Flaggy Shore scenic walk

    by donpaul77 Updated May 25, 2010

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    The Flaggy Shore Walk, The Burren

    In the village of New Quay in the north Burren is a very scenic and easy loop walk along the shore that begins right from the door of Linnane's Lobster Bar. The entire walk is about 3 miles and though it is along the road, there is little passing traffic. On a fine day the scenery is striking and there will be moments where you look around and say "this is Ireland".

    It's also a nice way to either work off or earn a pint and some seafood at Linnane's :)

    Ask details about the walk from one of the staff in Linnanes, or at the local tourism office.

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    Mullaghmore, the jewel of the Burren

    by donpaul77 Updated Apr 17, 2009

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    Mullaghmore, The Burren, Co. Clare
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    Mullaghmore stands out among an unearthly landscape. This mountainous formation really is the heart of the Burren, and I wonder how many people miss it on their travels. Not only is it an evocative picture of how this land was formed from the sea, it is also a paradise for hikers and botanists. There are several walks and hikes in the area. Some are easy nature walks, some are rugged jaunts up to the summit. The views from the summit are deeply stirring and sweep across the vast rocky expanse of the Burren.

    The hike we took to the summit was roughy 1 hour and fifty minutes, round trip. While the trails are well marked, I recommend stopping in at the heritage center in Corofin for information on the area. If you are hiking to the summit, dress as would for hiking any other mountain (rain gear, etc) and be sure to wear sturdy boots with good ankle support.

    Mullaghmore should be a high priority for people wishing to experience the ultimate beauty of the Burren.

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    • Hiking and Walking
    • Mountain Climbing

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