St. Brigit's Gardens and Aughnanure Castle

Careful Deirdre the gang are watching.

Our visit to St Brigit’s Gardens and Aughnanure Castle

A fine sunny day is what we hoped for as 36 of us boarded our bus headed for Brigit’s Gardens, near Oughterard on 4th Aug. ‘10
As we sped down the motorway, we felt as excited as schoolchildren on our first school outing. As soon as our bus arrived at the Gardens, we were met and welcomed by a very charming tour guide, Sabina. We enjoyed delicious tea, coffee and scones before setting off on our tour of this beautiful, Celtic inspired garden. As you stroll through the garden you explore the cycle of the seasons. Then you emerge onto a nature trail to discover a stone chamber, a crannog and a calendar sun dial. We checked out the hand-crafted basket swings and sat on the 6000 years old bog-oak throne. We refreshed our senses with scents of herbs and wild flowers .
It was a magical experience particularly enjoyed by the keen gardeners in our group who sniffed and admired the wonderful display of wild flowers.
Reluctant to leave these beautiful ,relaxing surroundings, we journeyed on for a visit to Aughnanure Castle which lies in picturesque surroundings close to the shores of Lough Corrib. Here we were again given a very informative guided tour of this Castle built by the O’Flahertys c.1500. The O’Flahertys and the powerful Mayo O’Malleys were joined in the marriage of Donal an Chogaidh O’Flaherty and Grainuaile/Grace O’Malley. The Castle is a particularly well preserved example of an Irish tower house.
We finished off a very full and interesting day in Kelehans Restaurant in Bushy Park. With hearty appetites, we sat down and enjoyed a lovely meal in beautiful surroundings before setting out on our journey home.
It was the last of our Summer day trips for 2010 but a memorable one it was for all of us.

Signed: Chris O’Flynn

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