September 27, 2015.
In the mid-afternoon we booked into Treetops B&B in Sligo. Our lively landlady Doreen had lots of great paintings at her B&B plus she promised us a ‘continental’ breakfast that made a superb change to the ‘full Irish’.
After we booked in she sent us off to the Carrowkeel Megalithic Tomb Complex.
Sign to the Carrowkeel Megalithic Tombs – this was the last sign we saw so we parked and we walked. And walked. And walked. Past curious sheep like this poser… Up a steep mucky hill…
Are we there yet? Is this a tomb? What are we looking at here?Al is quite skeptical about the piles of stones being graves; “How do we know it isn’t just a plain old pile of stones?”
Now this one looks like a tomb.A fellow sightseer, who had read up on what to expect, told us this site was famous for its ‘passage’ tombs, apparently it’s one of the big four in Ireland.I’ve marked the Lonely Planet map with the two Megalithic Cemeteries near Sligo.
Time Travel Ireland, with its great list of historic places in Ireland, explains the site much better than I do, starting with this evocative quote:
“I lit three candles and stood awhile, to let my eyes accustom themselves to the dim light. There was everything, just as the last Bronze Age man (sic) had left it, three to four thousand years before. A light brownish dust covered all… There beads of stone, bone implements made from Red Deer antlers, and many fragments of much decayed pottery. On little raised recesses in the wall were flat stones, on which reposed the calcinated bones of young children.” R.S. Macalister, the first person in thousands of years to enter the Neolithic tombs of Carrowkeel.
From Carrowkeel Megalithic Complex, another great site: Carrowkeel is a beautifully situated neolithic hilltop passage tomb complex consisting of 14 passage cairns identified with letters.