This megalitihic tomb was built more than 3000 BC by neolitihic communities. Newgrange attracts more than 200,000 visitors yearly. Most spectacular is of course at winter solstice. A shaft of light shines through the inner passage to light the burial chamber. If you want to experience that however you have to take into consideration that visiting at early morning from 19th until 23th december is done by lottery. They will allow only 10 people dayly and there are more than 20,000 submissions!
Just think of it that more than 5000 years ago they considered this shaft of light at winter solstice when they were building Newgrange.
Nearby are two other megalitihic tombs, but less spectacular as Newgrange, Knowth and Dowth.
This is the best known Irish passage tomb, surrounded by a kerb of 97 stones. The mound covers only one tomb consisting of a long passage and a criss-shaped chamber. Not for people who are very obese as the passage is extremely narrow in places, neither for people who suffer from clostrephobia.
Newgrange is an interesting remain of a Neolithic Passage-Tomb dating back more than 5000 years. A lot of fuss is made about this place, there is a small museum and "visitor-centre", lots of parking-spaces, that you have to pay for and for a tour inside of that grave you have to queue up and wait quite some time before you will be able to enter through a narrow corrridor. No photos inside, just some informations about a really interesting detail : while it is almost completely dark in that tomb, there is one day each year, when the sun shines in for a few minutes.
What impressed me most is the giant dimensions of this passage-tomb, something that I found quite strange is the modern way that is was reconstructed !
Newgrange is a World Heritage site featuring Megalithic ruins. You will actually get to travel into the center of the mound after traversing the Irish farm countryside. The kidney shaped tomb dates back to 3200 BC, but it's present condition is owed to more modern restoration of the previously recognized mound or sihde (Shee).
I took a Bus Eireann tour from Dublin to Newgrange via Bective Abby, Trim Castle and Hill of Tara. Cost was about E30. We left about 10am and returned about 5 or 5:30pm. If you don't have a car, the bus tour is a great way to go. The one drawback is time allowed for each location. I almost missed the return trip; thank goodness the kind bus driver had me paged in the Newgrange Museum!!
I thought Newgrange was just an incredible site. I had a very good guide, John Clark, who was both knowledgeable and very friendly. After entering the passage chamber he turned off the lights and then there was a simulation of the winter solstice sunlight lighting the passage and chamber. EXTRAORDINARY! In my opinion, this site is a must see in Ireland! I want to go again. Next time I will go by car so I can spend much more time at Newgrange, and visit Knoth and Dowth sites as well.
Oh, almost forgot. I enjoyed Bective Abby, Trim Castle and Hill of Tara as well, but, Newgrange was the most amazing!!
Also, we had lunch at the cafetria in the Newgrange Visitors Center. I had salmon and it was excellent! There is a full range of items from scones to quiche to salads to sandwiches plus desserts, and my choice - poached salmon and veggies.
Of course, you have time enough to walk around Newgrange (not inside). And wonder how people could calculate when exactly (in minutes) would the sun be at the right place to iluminate the cave! Every year on Dec. 21st. at 9:00 AM, a sunray makes the little room completely bright! And this ever since 5000 years!!! Ah! and by the way: Many people talk about Newgrange as a tomb, but fact is, that nobody really knows what was it for!
I think it is a great experience to visit Newgrange. As you are not allowed to visit it alone, while inside this monument, be adviced: The guide from the visitors center will explain you many interesting things about. But after warning, they turn off the lights, to show you how good was this built: In fact you do not see the person next to you, who actually is touching you lightly ! and off course, there is it absolutely dry.
If you consider it was built like 5000 years ago, without tools of any kind and no wheels! Its just amazing!
Newgrange... is there anything else to say, that nobody has yet told?
It `s very very bad signposted how to get there by car. Just as much: There is only one direction from which you see some signs to get there. For the 75% chances else you will need more than just patience and time. So plan it good in advance and good in time.
Newgrange is located between Navan and Drogheda. And do not try to go there directly with your own car: You MUST go first to the Visitor Center. There you get a bus that takes you and other visitors for free to Newgrange.
I am interested in old history of the celtics. And I can recommend everybody who have the same interest to travel to the old graves of the celtic people. That pictures shows 'Newgrande' - an old popular area of celtic graves.
Very informative guide from the west of Ireland gives you an in-depth tour of the hill of Tara, the Boyne Valley and Newgrange (you enter the tomb!). Pick up her brochure and make reservations at the TI.
Newgrange is my favourite tourist attraction in Ireland, and although I have visited it several times I still find it extremely fascinating, and all my friends get dragged here when they are visiting.
Newgrange is a restored Neolithic passage grave which was built around 3000 B.C. , making it older than the Egyptian pyramids. What is unique about Newgrange is a little square hole above the entrance which is aligned to the Eastern horizon in such a way that the rising sun at the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year, shines through this box, the beam of light winds its way to the passage into the inner chamber and illuminates it for about 20 min with radiant sunlight. Do not book your holidays for December 21st just yet, though, as that date is booked out for the next 9 years. But I think they changed the system now and you can enter a draw. And then the sun might not even be shining that day, which is a rather likely scenario, given the usual Irish weather in December. But the spectacle is re-enacted at every tour with a lamp, although this is just a poor imitation of the real thing (or so I am told). The downturn with Newgrange is that as one of the main tourist attractions in Ireland it is usually swarming with people who are taken to see the monument in groups of about 20. Therefore expect long delays during the tourist season during which you can have a look around the visitor centre
Visit Newgrange in North Ireland - it is a restored ancient chambered tomb. It is thought to be linked to the tomb Maes Howe on Orkney Scotland (see my UK page).
Newgrange is one of the finest examples of a tomb known as a “passage tomb” It was probably built about 3000 B.C. The tomb consists of a passage and chamber. The walls and roof were built of large slabs without mortar. A large circular mound or cairn of stones covers the tomb and a kerb of massive slabs on their long edges touching, surrounds the base of the cairn and acts as a retaining feature. The newgrange wall is estimated to have stood about 3 metres above the kerb. The mound itself is made up of medium-sized water-rolled pebbles about 15-25 cm in diameter and it is 11 metres high at the front. In 1963 the roof-box was discovered during excavations, it rests on the front part of the passage about 2,4 metres back from the passage mouth and on the winter solstice (dec 21st) the rays of the rising sun penetrate the chamber through a gap in the floor of the roof box. The edges of the roofstone are beautifully decorated. The passage is 18,9 metres long and is made up of standing stones about 1,5 metres high. Many of the stones are decorated. The chamber has 3 side chambers, so that on a plan the tomb has a cruciform shape. An incomplete circle of widely placed standing stones surrounds the mound. The circle is 103,6 metres in diameter and none of the stones are decorated. The kerb is made up of 97 stones and many of them are decorated.
It is a fascinating and magical place but it does get very busy in the summer months so go early to avoid the queues
On our mad dash to Dublin, we took in this site and enjoyed our time there. The ancient history is amazing. The way it is presented is tasteful and well done. This is another of the wonders of Ireland.
Newgrange is pretty cool and not too far from Dublin. It's some kind (neolithic?) of decorated tomb and really quite interesting. This picture is from 1993, though we also went in 1999, but the weather wasn't quite so good.
Older than the Great Pyramids of Egypt or England's Stonehenge...astronomically sophisticated with allignment of archetectural components to enlighten the interior on the culturally significant solstice...awesome scrowl stone-cutting that appeals to the modern eye as well as the eye of the ancients...powerfully illuminating and humbling at the same time...don't miss Newgrange!!!!