Sligo is known as Yeats’ country, as many sites are cited in his works and known to have inspired Yeats originally. The county is proud to be associated with the author and celebrates this in many different ways. Below is the top seven to visit for Sligo county.
1. WB Yeats Grave, Drumcliff
Yeats is known all over the world. The controversial Irish poet and ex-minister, who was born in County Dublin. If you love literary trails, Sligo has something to discover for you. Yeats’ grave is kept safe and tidy in the churchyard and marked by headstone with the engraving, “cast a cold eye on life, on death, horseman, and pass by.” In addition to Yeats’ grave in Drumcliff, you’ll find the remains of a round tower, a scripture cross with biblical scenes, a splendid church with Yeats’ free handouts and a charming gift shop.
2. Lissadel House
The house is one of the most historic homes of Ireland and was home to the Gore-Booth family. Constance Gore-Booth went on to become the famous Irish Nationalist. W.B. Yeats immortalised Lissadell in the opening lines of his poem in the memory of both ladies. It was recently opened to public after a lengthy legal battle that was won by the house owners. The house is now presented as it was back then, several ornaments that relate to country’s political over-turn and the works of art from that era. It is a major attraction in the Sligo area. It also hosts events and open as a museum outside of the events, although on a seasonal basis.
Benbulben is the one-of-a-kind rock formation and a protected site in County Sligo. The rocks that formed the mountain originated in the area approximately 320 million years ago. It belongs to the Dartry mountains range and has a distinctive peak, which was formed during the ice age. It is a well-known walking destination that attraction several hundred walkers every year. The climb is suitable for all ages and fitness levels. Just like many other sites in the Sligo area, this landmark was immortalised in the poetry of W.B. Yeats.
4. Glencar Waterfall
This 15-meter waterfall is set in a most enchanting of area, 11 km north of Sligo town, beside the Glencar Lake. It lies on the border of counties Sligo and Leitrim and naturally flows into the lake. Initially, the waterfall was named ‘srut i n-agaid an aeir’, translated as ‘the stream against the air’. The waterfall’s claim to fame came when it was mentioned in Yeats’ poem “Stolen Child”. Many of the writer’s fans visit the lake and the area to explore Yeats place of inspiration along with many other sites in Sligo area.
5. Parke’s Castle
Parke’s Castle is in our top five attractions in and around Sligo town. This Irish castle is located within half an hour’s drive from the town itself, a trip well worth it for the beautiful sights which are to be had along the road. The first reinvigorated assembly of this castle belonged to Sir Brian O’Rourke. At his castle he sheltered at least one survivor of a Spanish Armada ships remains at a time when Spain and England were on the brink of war. It is full of history and definitely worth a visit.
6. Streedagh beach
Streedagh beach near Grange village symbolizes a tranquil picture of golden sands and peaceful waters. This beach, however, is making the history to this day. It played a part in the history of The Rising of 1837, when the ship called “Erin’s Hope” dropped her anchor here. This beach is also mentioned in the history of Spanish Armada, it is off the Sligo coast and close to this beach 3 boats, La Lavia, Santa Maria de Vision and La Juliana sank in 1588 with around 1,000 sailors on board of each who lost their lives. More recently there were finding of canons, which were washed up on this beach belonging to one of those ships.
The name of the village Mullaghmore means ‘the great summit’ and it is a village in the identically named peninsula in County Sligo. It is a popular holiday destination in Ireland and offers stunning views over the ocean. The horizon is dominated by a monolithic-shaped Benbulben. On one side, there are rocky cliffs confront the strong Atlantic winds and on the other side, protected from the Ocean, lies a golden 8 km sandy beach and charming stone harbor. Most of the houses in Mullaghmore are holiday homes. Most of the houses here are unoccupied during winter and just stand here in silence. There are also several B&Bs and Hotels here that cater for the summer demand. It is a heaven for walkers and surfers. The walk around Mullaghmore Head would leave only Inishmurray Monastic Island between you and America.