Brad on an adventure into the Celtic spirit
September 26 to
October 10, 2003
Celtic riches of Ireland await you in what some call "the best time
of year in the Irish countryside." After the tourists have gone and
the Irish people settle into their Fall routines, the inner riches of
this remarkable landscape open up to the thoughtful visitor.
We begin our pilgrimage in Co. Meath
in the historic Boyne Valley, travel to the seaside town of Sligo, down
the West Coast to the Dingle peninsula, winding our way through the
center of Ireland to Glendalough, the valley of the two lakes.
Day – September 26, 2003
Fly to Dublin (this tour includes a
round trip Trans-Atlantic flight.)
September 27, 2003
We arrive in Dublin early
in the morning. We’ll meet our bus and driver and head North for an
introduction to Celtic Spirituality at the Hill of Slane in county Meath.
After lunch, the afternoon at our Retreat Center in Navan is yours to walk
the beautiful grounds or to rest. Short evening welcome reception.
STAY: Outside Navan at Bellinter
House retreat center.
Bellinter House is a splendid 1750 Palladian
mansion set in 14 acres of parkland on the banks of the river Boyne.
The center, set in the heart of County Meath countryside, is a quiet and
an ideal venue for retreats.
This day’s journey will take
us to the most extraordinary high crosses in all of Ireland at
Monasterboice followed by a noon picnic and tour of Mellifont Abbey with
an afternoon stop at the ancient monastic community of Kells. Dinner at
our retreat center followed by an evening meditation.
STAY: Bellinter House
September 29, 2003
We spend the day in Dublin visiting
Trinity College, the Book of Kells and the National Museum and return to
our retreat center in Navan for dinner and an evening meditation.
STAY: Bellinter House
The Hill of Tara, Co Meath
September 30, 2003
Today we tour the ancient
burial sites of Newgrange and visit the informative visitor’s center
there. After lunch we’ll move on to the famed Hill of Tara and it’s
mysteries. We return to our retreat center for a meal and an evening
October 1, 2003
This morning we say goodbye to
our retreat center in Navan and travel across the border of Northern
Ireland on our way to the town of Sligo on Ireland’s dramatic West
Coast. Lunch in the Northern Irish town of Enniskillen. Dinner and
overnight at a lovely seaside hotel.
First thing this morning, we
will visit the Carrowmore megalithic cemetery near Sligo, one of the
world’s most impressive prehistoric burial sites. Afternoon options will
include the Drumcliff Church with Yeat’s grave, or
recreation at our hotel. A free evening will allow you to walk on the
beach, rest, or venture in to Sligo for traditional Irish music.
The High Cross and Church at Drumcliff, Co Sligo
We say goodbye to Sligo and
drive to Co. Clare, home of the unique beauty of the Burren, an expansive
area of ground covered by a rough and ragged limestone cap. Lunch near the
seaside town of Ballyvaughn, an afternoon exploring the Burren with its
famed portal Dolmen and dinner at our hotel in Doolin.
We’ll enjoy a drive through
Co Clare on our way to the remote western beauty of the Dingle peninsula.
For the next two nights our group will take over two bed and breakfast
STAY: Dingle Town
The Gallarus Oratory, Dingle Peninsula
The Dingle peninsula is home to
a variety of stone circles, monastic settlements, beehive huts, a
perfectly preserved oratory, the Blasket Islands, and an excellent
visitor’s center. A local archeologist and guide will join us for our
tour of the Dingle peninsula. Dingle Town is home to artisans and
musicians who specialize in the Celtic tradition. Free evening.
STAY: Dingle Town
Leaving Dingle en route to Kildare, we
stop for lunch in the quaint town of Adare, known for its thatched
cottages. Tonight we meditate in Kildare at the Christian Community Center
called Solas Bhride.
Kildare, the church of the oak,
is the historic home of St. Brigid and now the home of the Brigidine
sisters. We’ll spend the day with the energetic and visionary sisters
who are leading a renaissance in women’s spirituality in Ireland.
We’ll pray with them in the serene surroundings of Brigid’s well then
visit the Cathedral and walk an outdoor labyrinth.
The ancient pilgrim route
across the Wicklow Mountains marks our descent into Glendalough the
"valley of the two lakes" where we will be greeted by one of the
most remarkable round towers in all of Ireland. Our guides to Glendalough
will be author and Celtic specialist, Marcus Losack and Kevin O'Kelly. Evening
meeting and meditation with Marcus. We’ll stay next to Glendalough so
you can visit these magnificent ruins early in the morning or late in the
A day in Glendalough to
explore, relax and reflect. A beautiful outdoor labyrinth is available all
day for your walking meditation. Dinner and free evening.
A morning drive to Dublin and a
flight to JFK.
St. Kevin's church and round tower, Glendalough, Co Wicklow
you want to learn the difference between religion and spirituality, this is
the tour for you!
— Vicki, A
social worker from Denver and participant in the 2001 tour.
Please take note:
of the places we visit and explore reflect the rugged, isolation of early
Irish hermits. In order to reach these sacred prayer cells, passage tombs and
monasteries, we will travel part way by foot. This pilgrimage is not
recommended for those who have severe health problems or limited mobility.
Because this pilgrimage is limited
to twenty participants, we
recommend sending your deposit early to ensure a place.
Now! (with Illuminated Journeys)
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