The Boyne Valley and Newgrange Monument
Discover Ireland’s rich heritage.
The Newgrange Monument in the Boyne Valley is one of the must see places while on your walking holiday in Ireland. And it is just 30 minutes from Dublin and the Cooley Peninsula. Situated in Ireland’s Ancient East, the Boyne Valley runs across counties, Louth and Meath.
The father of Oscar Wilde (William Wilde) wrote of the Boyne that the history of Ireland could be traced through its monuments. This is certainly still true today. Moreover, its sites and monuments are amongst the best examples of their kind in Europe. And they are all within a short distance of each other. These include the medieval town of Drogheda. The great prehistoric tombs at Brú Na Bóinne (Newgrange) and the site of the infamous Battle of the Boyne.
Dating back to 3200 B.C the passage tomb at Newgrange is older than the pyramids in Egypt. It is also a World Heritage site. Spread over an acre, 97 uniquely carved kerbstones surround a large mound. The cremated remains of the dead were buried in large stone basins under the mound in a chamber accessible by a narrow passage.
At dawn on the December 21, the shortest day of the year, every year, sunlight shines directly into the central chamber of the tomb. We believe that this was an ancient way of measuring the passage of time, like a calendar for the early farmers, or that the light has some religious significance for those in the afterlife.
Newgrange is part of the Brú Na Bóinne (Newgrange) complex which includes similar tombs at Knowth and Dowth.