Clonmacnoise, County Offaly

4.5
#1 of 8 in Historic Sites in County Offaly
A preserved ruin along the Shannon River set against green and rolling hills, Clonmacnoise offers a glimpse into the religious and cultural history of the monasteries in Ireland. Founded in 546 CE by Saint Ciarán, the monastery was a center of learning and trade for over 600 years until it began to decline around the 12th century due to a diminishing population. Visit many of the ruined and partially ruined buildings on the site, including temple Finghín and McCarthy's tower, cross of the scriptures, and the cathedral, where the last High King of Ireland is buried. Many kings from Meath, Tara, and Connacht were buried at this site. Explore the visitor center for a comprehensive history of the site. Use our County Offaly trip builder app to add Clonmacnoise and other attractions to your County Offaly vacation plans.
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Clonmacnoise Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
1,011 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • This old monastery is located next to the River Shannon. There are cattle grazing in green fields next to the river. The museum includes a video at the beginning and then a tour guide takes you...  more »
  • We visited this ancient monastic site on a very cold, windy day. But you could still appreciate the beauty of the site and the impressive renovation scheme employed to preserve these ruins.  more »
  • There's something special about this place. There's a tranquility and serenity about it. Irish history in is own outdoor museum  more »
Google
  • The atmosphere is superb. You feel the saints of old are close to you here. The people on duty are delightful and very enthusiastic about their work and the site. It is really well thought out with a very good film and display boards which help you to appreciate what you are seeing. The museum which houses the three high crosses is excellent. It is well worth a lengthy detour to make a visit. Especially if you approach as a pilgrim.
  • Absolutely one of my favorite places I've visited on this trip. A site of incredible historical relevance that is well maintained and has a very informative little museum attached. One particularly striking feature for me was the sense of peace here, and there are so many interesting tidbits of information that make it a worthwhile stop for any history enthusiast. I will definitely return when I can.
  • Simply beautiful historic site. Information movie in different languages. Lots of information about the three high crosses inside the building and stunning ruins.
  • Amazing. Went by boat and it was really pretty. Swam off the dock and then headed up to the tower. Had coffee and cake in the cafe, Very nice experience.
  • Well worth the visit, lovely site by the Shannon. Fantastic ruins of Norman castle with moat nearby
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Plans to Clonmacnoise by other users

22 days in Ireland BY A USER FROM INDIA May, culture, historic sites, slow & easy, hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 16 days in United Kingdom & Ireland BY A USER FROM CANADA October, popular sights PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 36 days in Ireland BY A USER FROM GREECE July, culture, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 60 days in Europe BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, culture, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, shopping, extra fast, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, culture, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Extra fast 21 days in Ireland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 1 day in County Offaly BY A USER FROM IRELAND February, teens, kids, culture, relaxing, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: February, teens, kids, culture, relaxing, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 2 days in County Offaly BY A USER FROM IRELAND February, popular sights PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 21 days in Ireland BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping, hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 1 day in Athlone BY A USER FROM IRELAND February, popular sights PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 21 days in Ireland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 2 days in Athlone BY A USER FROM CANADA June, culture, shopping, popular sights PREFERENCES: June, culture, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 1 day in Athlone BY A USER FROM IRELAND February, popular sights PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium
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