Visit the Patrick Kavanagh Centre in Inniskeen to find out more about the great Irish poet.
Patrick Kavanagh was born on 21 October 1904 in County Monaghan and went on to become a key figure of Irish poetry. He is perhaps best known for ‘On Raglan Road’, his touching account of a doomed relationship that the Dubliners later set to music.
The Patrick Kavanagh Centre in his hometown of Inniskeen is the most thorough collection of literary materials in the world.
Ireland Before You Die’s top tips for visiting the Patrick Kavanagh Centre:
- We highly recommend driving as Inniskeen is not easily accessible by public transport. If you need to hire a car, you might check out our handy guide.
- The Patrick Kavanagh Centre is about an hour’s drive from Dublin and from Belfast.
- Accommodation is scarce in Inniskeen, so consider options elsewhere in County Monaghan or in neighbouring Louth, Meath, Cavan, Fermanagh, Tyrone, or Armagh. Note that the latter three are in Northern Ireland and use the pound rather than the euro.
- The Ring of Gullion – a UNESCO Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty – is a half-hour drive away. Again, this is in Northern Ireland, so bear in mind the currency change.
Interesting facts about the Patrick Kavanagh Centre:
- The centre’s exhibition includes interactive displays, films, memory boxes, letters, and contemporary ephemera, which collectively document Patrick Kavanagh’s life and work.
- The Kavanagh Trail visits numerous sites associated with Kavanagh’s work, including his home, his school, and Billy Brennan’s bar, which was immortalised in Kavanagh’s 1936 poem ‘Inniskeen Road: July 1936’.
- The centre set up a poetry jukebox by the River Fane featuring recordings of recitals of Kavanagh’s poems.
- There is a gift shop stocking such souvenirs as books, bookmarks, cards, and even a vinyl LP.
Food: Inniskeen is a small village, so we advise heading elsewhere for food. You’ll find Cavallino’s (Italian), Courthouse (Irish), Valley Lodge (Irish gastropub), and Grey Porter (Irish, casual) in nearby Carrickmacross.
Drink: Carrickmacross also has the highest concentration of pubs in the area. Head to J.J. Cunningham, Deery’s, Nallo’s, McArdles, or Hughes’s if you fancy a pint after your trip to the Patrick Kavanagh Centre.
Accommodation: The nearest accommodation to the Patrick Kavanagh Centre is the three-star Gleneven Guesthouse or the self-catering Candlefort Lodge. You’ll find the Shirley Arms Hotel (four-star) in Carrickmacross.
Other attractions: St. Peter’s Tin Church is in nearby Laragh, Dún a Rí Forest Park is just across the county border in Cavan, and Dromiskin Monastic Site is a mere 20-minute drive from the centre.
Your questions answered about the Patrick Kavanagh Centre
Where is Patrick Kavanagh from?
Patrick Kavanagh is from Inniskeen, County Monaghan.
What is Patrick Kavanagh’s most famous poem?
Patrick Kavanagh’s most famous poems include ‘The Great Hunger’ and ‘On Raglan Road’. The latter was put to music and recorded by famous Irish band the Dubliners in 1971.
How old was Patrick Kavanagh when he died?
Patrick Kavanagh was just 63 years old when he died in Dublin in 1967. He is interred next to the Patrick Kavanagh Centre.
Contact and more info
Address: Candlefort, Co. Monaghan, A91 KT20, Ireland
Email: [email protected]
Monday–Friday, 10 am–5 pm (last admission 4:15 pm).
Saturday and bank holidays, 11 am–5 pm (last admission 4:15 pm).
Self-guided tour: €10 per person.
Guided tour: €15 per person, minimum five paying visitors.
Deluxe guided tour: €20 per person, minimum ten paying visitors, discounts available for large groups.
Children under seven go free to all of the above.