Newgrange - Co Meath
Located just 40km from Dublin, Newgrange is an awe-inspiring Stone Age monument in the Boyne Valley of County Meath. Built about 3,200 BC, it pre-dates both Stonehenge, and the great pyramid of Giza, and along with the similar passage tomb mounds of Knowth and Dowth, forms part of the Brú na Bóinne UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Archaeologically classified as a passage tomb, it is now recognised to be much more than that, with a more fitting classification being that of an Ancient Temple, owing to its astrological, spiritual, religious, and ceremonial importance.
A notable discovery was that of the monument being aligned with the winter solstice and that a small roof box situated directly above the entrance allows the rising sun to illuminate the passage and chamber for a short period. Access to the chamber on these mornings is decided by a lottery.
When visiting, the only access to the site is through the Brú na Bóinne Visitor Centre, where you will be transported by shuttle bus to both the ethereal Newgrange and Knowth.