Diggin' Mandi

Brú na Bóinne – A 5,000 year old World Heritage Site!

Brú na Bóinne

Bru na Boinne LIGHTROOM 1

I did it! I finally made it! I have been to Ireland several times over the past few years and have always wanted to visit the Brú na Bóinne UNESCO site but could never seem to make it there. I could never seem to fit it into my schedule. However, this time was different. This time I made my schedule revolve around visiting this site! And boy am I so happy that I did. This site was something special! Yay!

What is it?

Bru na Boinne 2

I don’t know how to say this any other way other than to say Brú na Bóinne is amazing! How so? For starters, it is an archaeological site that dates back to about 5,000 years ago and is still in great condition. The site consist of three large scale tombs (Knowth, Newgrange, and Dowth), over an additional ninety monuments, and is the largest collection of megalithic art in Europe. Yeah, I’d say it is kind of a big deal! Because of the scale and condition of the site it is a great candidate to be included in the World Heritage Sites list. Whoop, whoop! This is a win-win situation for this gal!

My friend Mary and I at the entrance to the chamber

My friend Mary and I at the entrance to the chamber

The builders of the monuments were not daft. On the contrary, they were very knowledgeable about the way the universe works. The way these tombs were built and positioned showed no lacking in intelligence. For example, the entrance to the Newgrange chamber was built in alignment with the sun on the shortest day of the year – the dawn of the winter solstice (December 21st). When the sun shines through the entrance opening on this day the chamber becomes fully illuminated. Very cool stuff!!

Interpretation Center
Interpretation Center showing how the stones were possibly moved.

Interpretation Center showing how the stones were possibly moved.

What also makes this site awesome is the Interpretation Center. In addition to all the information they provide about the individuals who lived there five-thousand years ago, there is a replica of Knowth and a partial full-scaled replica of the inside of the Newgrange chamber right there in the Interpretation Center! I was very impressed!

Me in Interpretation center

But wait, let me take a selfie! Have you seen my new hat?

I suggest you take pictures here because you are not allowed to do so within the actual chambers themselves. This is a great way to have visual reminders of what it looks like. Well, and take some killer selfies, ha!

My experience

My favorite part of visiting the site are the opportunities that are offered for people like me to geek-out with. What opportunities you ask? Well, visitors are allowed to visit and go into the tomb chambers, that’s what! Throughout the year visitors are allowed to take a tour of the Newgrange chamber; whereas, it is only between April and October the Knowth monument is open for visitation.

Unfortunately, I was only able to visit the Newgrange monument because I was there in December. I can’t wait to go back and visit Knowth someday!

When I arrived at Brú na Bóinne I was very excited. However, when my shuttle pulled up to the Newgrange monument I was flooded with emotion and awe. The pictures I had seen did no justice to its size and perfection. A large mound of beautiful green grass with its edges protected by beautiful white stone; it made me feel like I had stepped into a dream world of sorts. It was awwwwsome!!

Is it worth a visit?

It is obvious I really enjoyed this UNESCO site. Being loaded with history, science, and art who could not?! You can easily spend two or three hours at this site and not fell disappointed for a single minute. If you are into archaeology, history, architecture, or just want to see something really cool, then this is definitely something you want to put on your to-do list when visiting Ireland.

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