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Grianan Aileach Ring Fort

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Address: Burt, Ireland
Phone Number: 353-77-68512
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Description: Legend says it was built by the ancient gods; the ring fort was known as...
Legend says it was built by the ancient gods; the ring fort was known as the Sun Palace and was held sacred. Traces of ancient earthworks, dating to the early Iron Age, surround the fort, enclosing an area of about 5 acres (0.02 km2). The fort itself was probably built in the early centuries of the Christian era. From the 5th to the 12th century AD it served as the royal seat of the O Neill sept of Aileach; it was destroyed by Murtogh O Brien, king of Munster in 1101. To make the demolition complete, the king ordered each of his soldiers to take away a stone from the fort. Grianan of Aileach was reconstructed by Dr Bernard of Derry in 1870, but archaeologists are doubtful about the inner restoration. Surrounding the stone fort are three concentric low walls which formed part of the original fortification of the fort.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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Worth a visit for the views

Visited Sunday 16th August it was a beautiful day so the views were fabulous. Got some brilliant shots of Donegal down towards Fanad and Dunree. The fort itself is great and... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed August 16, 2015
Fox149
,
Derry, United Kingdom
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124 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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  • Any
English first
Derry, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
168 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 97 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2015

Visited Sunday 16th August it was a beautiful day so the views were fabulous. Got some brilliant shots of Donegal down towards Fanad and Dunree. The fort itself is great and children will enjoy climbing up the steps to the top. Some ongoing work happening on the path up should make a difference when completed

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Killybegs, Ireland
Level Contributor
20 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2015

The Ring fort is from the 7th or 8th Century. the view of the surrounding Counties is unbelievable, make sure you have a camera !!!

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Durbanville, South Africa
Level Contributor
16 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2015

Magnificent view. Interesting structure but not hugely intricate. Worth a stop to look around but wouldn't plan a day around it.

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Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2015

Unfortunately we visited this on not so nice a day, and once up very high the views were next to none and it was freezing but what we did see we thought was amazing and worth coming back on a better day

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Shanghai, China
2 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2015

Saw it on an extremely stormy day but still nice. The drive up is a little difficult but it is worth it. The building is great the view is fantastic and it is all free

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South Brunswick, New Jersey
Level Contributor
10 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2015

Well worth the trip up a winding road to the top of the hill, where the ring fort sits commanding unrestricted views on all sides. The fort itself was an amazing structure but the real attraction is the patchwork of green and golden fields that lie below it and the wide mouth of Lough Swilly and beyond that, lies the... More 

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Boulder, Colorado
Level Contributor
14 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2015

Our 10 year old son discovered Grianan Ailligh in a book of Ireland before we left. It was only a slight detour from our route but so worthwhile. Not only to visit this fascinating ring fort, which dates back over 2,000 years, but to enjoy the stunning views even on a cloudy morning.

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Level Contributor
25 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2015

No activities or interactivity or infographics or glass-case displays. Just a stunning dry-stone fort standing five metres high on the top of a hill. The view commanded from the walls, once you've entered through the tunnel & climbed the stairs, is breathtaking. We were there at sunset and the light reflected off the lough bathed us in dappled fire and... More 

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Level Contributor
20 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2015

Stunning views... oh it really is worth the view. the structure itself is quote interesting to look at. Nice for children to have a run about but you won't do much more than look about.

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Level Contributor
154 reviews
63 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2015

Grianan Aileach is a fabulous restored fort with amazing views over three counties on a clear day. You can walk around inside the fort and then climb the walls to experience the views. it is worth stopping off here if passing close by. There is ample parking at it and there was a woman in a van selling tea and... More 

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