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The spectacular ruins of Dun Conchuir, a great hill fort on the island of Inis Meáin, date back to pre-Christian times. The island of Inis Meáin, also known as Inishmaan, is one of the three main Aran Islands in Galway Bay. The size of the island’s population means that it is one of the smallest Aran Islands, but it is a real stronghold of traditional Irish culture. The inhabitants of the island are mainly Irish-speaking, although most of them speak English as a second language also.
The size of the ruins mean that they can be seen from the sea as one approaches the island of Inis Meáin. A massive wall once surrounded the stone fort, which was up to eight yards wide in some places. The inner wall was built with over 14,000 tons of stone, much of which is thought to have been excavated from the western perimeter of the island.
Although experts conclude from the massive size and prominent placement of the fort that it must date back to prehistoric times, no one has been able to officially determine whether it is a product of the Iron or Bronze Age. The fort does appear to have been inhabited and enlarged during the early medieval period, however.
Inis Meáin tends to be one of the less visited of the Aran Islands, and so is a great destination if you want to escape from the tourist hustle and bustle. The island must be accessed by boat, and ferries regularly leave from Galway City. The journey isn’t long, and the island and ancient fort are well worth a visit. Galway City makes a great base for trips to Inis Meáin, enjoy being part of the vibrant city of Galway, and then make an escape to the peace and tranquility of Dun Conchuir.
Visiting Dun Conchuir makes for a fantastic family activity. There’s plenty of space for children to run around, clamber on the ruins and be inspired by touching a piece of Ireland’s ancient history. There are plenty of accommodation options in Galway City and the bay area to keep the kids and adults happy, and make sure everyone is well rested and ready for their historical trip.
There is a good selection of hotels that offer children’s clubs, childcare and babysitting. You can have peace of mind that however you choose to spend your holiday, your kids will be safe and happy.
There can’t be anything much more romantic that catching a ferry out to the desolate beauty of the Aran Isles. Visiting Dun Conchuir on Inis Meáin can be a memory you and your loved one keep forever. And there are some excellent accommodation options in Galway City to make that trip even more special. Splash out on an upmarket hotel, or cosy down in a bed and breakfast and enjoy some traditional warm Irish hospitality.