728 x 90

Rathcroghan is a veritable treasure trove of archaeological wonders, with over 240 sites of interest nestled within a few square kilometres of the Roscommon countryside. This includes everything from Stone Age tombs to royal burial mounds, great ringforts and places of ceremonial inauguration. Among these sites is the legendary Oweynagat, or Cave of the Cats, which is believed to be the birthplace of the Samhain festival. In early Christian times, it was even believed to be Ireland's Gate to Hell, instilling fear in many who dared to approach it.

Another notable feature is a two-metre standing stone that marks the grave of King Dathi, the last pagan king of Ireland, who died after being struck by lightning in the Alps. The story of this legendary king has been passed down through generations, and his final resting place is still revered today.

Perhaps the most remarkable story, however, is that of Queen Medb, who is said to have ruled all of Connacht from her home at Rathcroghan. Her legacy is still celebrated in Irish folklore, and the landscape is dotted with reminders of her reign, including the impressive Rathcroghan Mound.

To experience the rich history and mythology of Rathcroghan, visitors can explore the interpretive rooms and join expertly guided tours at the Rathcroghan Visitor Centre. Located in the medieval village of Tulsk, Co. Roscommon, the centre offers an immersive look at the fascinating world of Rathcroghan's past. This project is a Communities Involvement Initiative supported by the OPW. With its incredible archaeological significance, Rathcroghan is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in Ireland's ancient past.