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Ross Errily Friary, County Galway

(4.7/5 based on 55+ reviews on the web)
The Ross Errilly Friary is a medieval Franciscan friary located about a mile to the northwest of Headford, County Galway, Ireland. It is a National Monument of Ireland and among the best-preserved medieval monastic sites in the country. Though usually referred to by locals as "Ross Abbey," this is not technically correct as the community never had an abbot.The church and bell tower are to the south of a small but well preserved central cloister and domestic buildings are to the north. Amongst these are a kitchen (equipped with an oven and a water tank for live fish), a bake house, and a refectory or dining area. The dormitories are on the upper levels. One unusual feature is a second courtyard or cloister, built to accommodate the friary's growing population.Like many other abandoned Christian sites in Ireland, Ross Errilly has continued to be used as a burial ground by area residents. In addition to tombs that date from the friary's active period, many graves dating from the 18th through 20th centuries can be found inside the church walls. In some cases, tombstones comprise the floors of walkways and crawlspaces.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • I had not planned this visit but was meandering around that day and can never resist a sign to an abbey, church or friary. And this is a fine one, standing out from afar. As someone else has said, you...  more »
  • This was a really neat building with lots of rooms and unique looks. The graves make it eerie but it is history .  more »
  • What a surprise to find the monastery in the middle of the countryside! Many things are hidden inside and it is worth a drive there  more »
Google
  • Off the beaten path but very different than the other ruins and castles. There are no staff, admission fee nor advertising of the site. Located way out in farm land gives one a secluded; almost spooky feeling. I went at about 2pm on a Monday and no one else was there. Added to the vibe.
  • Gorgeous old friary, partly in ruins. It was completely empty of visitors when we went, so that made it more special. A bit out of the way, but worth the stop on a tour from Galway.
  • Very well preserved ruins, one of my favourite things that I saw on my short Ireland trip. Worth the visit. I would allow at least 20mins here.
  • Really scary at the late evening... ravens graves. Simply cool
  • Beautiful place, a bit remote and off the beaten track though.