Spotlight: Muckross Abbey

transport in Killarney

Happy 18th of March! It’s also known as “Chronic Hangover Day”. We hope you had a lovely Paddy’s Day and the wallet (and liver) are in fine fettle.

Life does indeed move on and so does Killarney. This week we thought we’d look at one of Killarney’s most fabled and historic buildings – Muckross Abbey.

I’m sure you’ll visit it in your own time, after all, it is remarkably close to Killarney Holiday Village, but we thought you might want to know a bit more about its history to, y’know, appreciate its grandeur even more.

The Abbey was built in 1448 by Daniel McCarthy Mor. The abbey was occupied by observantine Franciscan monks. The Abbey was used as a place of worship and abode by the monks for just under 200 years. In the 17th Century, Cromwellian laws imposed on Ireland banned the monasteries and the abbey was burned by forces under the command General Edmond Ludlow. It was a sturdy ol’ structure though and as you can see the Abbey remains very well preserved in spite of its, er, burning. It does lack a roof though, in case you’re wondering.

In later years the Abbey served as a burial ground for local chieftains and also three of Kerry’s most famous poets, Geoffrey O’Donoghue, Aodhagan O’Rathaille and Eoghan Rua O’Suilleabhain. You can find out more about them boys here.

One of the abbey’s most striking features is the ancient yew tree which stands in the centre of the abbey and is said to be as old as the abbey itself.

It really is a wonderful structure and entry is free of charge. I would urge you to take a stroll around it whenever you find yourself in the park.