With the hazy, lazy days of the summer to look forward to; it’s time to look at getting out and about discovering areas of this great land. Have you heard of the Ring of Gullion, but don’t know much about it? From the 2nd August, the Ring of Gullion Coach Tours will make their way gently through the rolling hills of South Armagh, visiting important built heritage sites every Wednesday and Saturday in August.
The Ring of Gullion Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is a unique geological landform, unparalleled elsewhere in Ireland or the UK. The ring of low, rugged hills forms a ‘rampart’ around the heather-clad Slieve Gullion mountain. The Ring of Gullion’s mysterious reputation arises from its associations with legends and the wider area’s rich archaeological heritage.
It was along these roads and fields, and over these hills and mountains, that Cúchulainn and the Red Branch Knights, the O’Neills and the O’Hanlons roamed, battled and died. You can hear some of these stories about Fionn Mac Cumhaill, Cúchulainn and the Cailleach Beara on the tour. The Ring of Gullion is alive with history, awash in scenic beauty and bursting with culture.
The tours kicked off on 2nd August 2017 with Una Walsh “the mastermind of the history of the Ring of Gullion” as your tour guide. The coach will leave Bagenal’s Castle, Newry at 10.30am and return at 4.30pm.
Councillor Roisin Mulgrew, Chairperson of Newry, Mourne and Down District Council “The Ring of Gullion Heritage Coach Tour is a great introduction to this area, a hidden gem of Northern Ireland. Some of the tours are already booked up, so get booking your seat before it is too late! Every year, we are inundated with positive reviews for the tours.”
Last year, one visitor commented:-
“We highly recommend this tour for anyone who wants to experience an historical insight into the culture and folklore of this area of outstanding beauty. The tour guides passion and knowledge of her heritage and culture was engaging and uplifting and a very positive experience. To think that from the center of Newry you are only a 20 minute drive from a monument dating older than the pyramids!”
Another told us “My husband & I had the great pleasure last Saturday of joining the tour. The tour guide, Una Walsh, was amazing, her enthusiasm, knowledge & passion for her countryside was entertaining & informative, non-stop flow of history, geography/geology & folklore, all brought to life in a gripping fashion.”
“On behalf of Belfast U3A, can I thank everyone involved in The Ring of Gullion Heritage Coach Tour for our wonderful tour of South Armagh, especially our guide Una Walsh one of the best historians we have ever listened to.”
“On behalf of myself and my 4 accompanying friends, we would like to express our enjoyment on a wonderful day out today on the Heritage tour. Una was a brilliant guide, every bit as spectacular in her knowledge as the outstanding scenery we saw. We were so impressed with every aspect of the tour and will not hesitate to highly recommend it to others. Una’s obvious passion about the area struck a chord with all of us.”
So, call up a few of your favourite travel companions or family members and get booked on these outstanding heritage tours. Escape for a while on this relaxing coach tour of south Armagh, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.