Megalithic Adventure with Anthony Murphy & Richard Moore - 17th Feb 2024Come on a tour of some of the megalithic sites of the Boyne Valley - Fourknocks, Hill of Tara and Dowth
Cost:$17.00 – $82.00 per person
About this experience
Enjoy a tour of some of the megalithic monuments of the Boyne Valley. Anthony Murphy and Richard Moore met in January 1999 and their friendship resulted in a number of important discoveries about the astronomical alignments of ancient monuments. They co-authored the book Island of the Setting Sun: In Search of Ireland's Ancient Astronomers in 2006. It has been republished several times since and is still in print.
To celebrate a quarter of a century of friendship, research and discovery, Anthony and Richard are teaming up to host a tour of the Neolithic passage-tomb of Fourknocks, followed by an exploration of the prehistoric monuments of the Hill of Tara, before heading to Brú na Bóinne for a tour of Dowth – the first of the great trio of monuments of the Bend of the Boyne to have been built.
The tour will focus on the three subjects that combined to make Island of the Setting Sun such a much-loved book – astronomy, archaeology and mythology – or, as Anthony and Richard have often put it, "Stars, stones and stories".
10am, Fourknocks: Meet at Fourknocks monument at 10am on Saturday 17th February. You must have your own transport for this tour. Park on the public road opposite the entrance steps to Fourknocks. Remember to pull your car in as close to the hedge as possible to leave room for traffic to pass, and don't leave any valuables in your vehicle. (Google Maps link for Fourknocks tomb: https://maps.app.goo.gl/i8a2E2X6ASddJtmn6 )
11.15am, depart Fourknocks: After an hour or so at Fourknocks, we will head to Hill of Tara. The journey takes about half an hour. Please be aware that your trip from Fourknocks to Tara will cross two very busy main roads, the N2 and the N3. Remember to be careful negotiating those junctions and leave plenty of room.
11.50am approx, arrive at Tara: Free parking is available at Tara but tends to be limited, especially at weekends. There is a paid car park directly across from Maguire's which costs €2 to exit. Tour participants can use the restrooms at Tara before we start the tour of the hill. Please note that there are NO TOILETS at either Fourknocks or Dowth, so Tara provides the only opportunity to use restrooms. (Google Maps link for Maguire's/car parks at Tara: Location of Maguire's, Hill of Tara )
12 noon, Tara tour: We will begin our exploration of Tara's myths, monuments and alignments around 12 noon. The tour will last for about an hour or so. The terrain requires a medium level of fitness. Remember to bring hiking boots or suitable waterproof footwear. In winter the ground tends to get very soggy in places at Tara. There are some grassy slopes – please follow the tour leader (Anthony) who will ensure to use the gentlest gradients for your safety.
1.15pm, lunch: At around 1.15pm or so we will break for lunch. You can bring a packed lunch and eat in your vehicle or at one of the public seats near the car park, or alternatively you can grab something in Maguire's. Please note that lunch is not included in the ticket price.
2.15pm, leave Tara: When everyone has had their lunch and used the restrooms, we will depart Tara for Dowth. The drive takes about 35 minutes, depending on traffic. Please drive to the Dowth passage-tomb (Google Map link: Location of Dowth passage-tomb )
3pm, tour of Dowth: Please park along the public road (L1607) outside Dowth, and remember to park safely and don't leave any valuables in your vehicle. Adequate footwear is also essential at Dowth because in winter the ground can be quite soft and muddy in places. We will explore the monument, its astronomy and mythology for about an hour, and hopefully we might also get to enjoy nice views of the surrounding landscape from the top of the monument.
4.15pm approx, End of Tour: At this point, the tour will end. Remember to drive safely when you are heading home.
Anthony Murphy is an author, broadcaster, tour guide and founder of Mythical Ireland. He has written nine books about the myths, monuments and astronomical alignments of Ireland's ancient past. Richard Moore is an artist who has spent much of his life painting the monuments and landscape of the Boyne Valley. Together, Anthony and Richard wrote Island of the Setting Sun: In Search of Ireland's Ancient Astronomers, and made several discoveries about the megalithic sites of the Boyne region.