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Drombeg Stone Circle (Druid's Altar)
Drombeg Stone Circle (Druid's Altar)

Drombeg Stone Circle (Druid's Altar)

Free admission

Also known as the Druid's Altar, Drombeg Stone Circle is one of the most impressive prehistoric monuments in Ireland. Dating back to 1,100 BC, the megalithic site consists of 17 standing stones, which tower 6 feet (2 meters) above ground, and is thought to have been used as a burial or sacrifice site.

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Drombeg, West Cork, Cork

The Basics

Drombeg Stone Circle is located in an idyllic setting of farmland that overlooks the sea; the rural location means that it attracts fewer crowds than other Ireland attractions. Full-day tours of West Cork typically begin with a visit to Drombeg Stone Circle and allow you to skip the hassle of hiring a car; instead, you can spend more time focusing on the scenery of nearby Killarney and the Wild Atlantic Way.

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Things to Know Before You Go

  • Drombeg Stone Circle is a must-visit for those with an interest in ancient history.

  • The site is free to visit and is open-air, so warm clothes are recommended.

  • Two information boards at the site provide a brief historical background, but it’s a good idea to do some additional research before your visit.

  • There is free parking nearby the circle.

  • Ireland’s weather is notoriously unpredictable, so bring an umbrella along to cover all eventualities.

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How to Get There

If driving directly from Cork, it takes around an hour and 20 minutes to reach Drombeg Stone Circle. You’ll pass through the seaside town of Clonakilty on the way, from where you take the N71 road west to Ross Carberry; just after the causeway take a left turn onto the R597, then after about 2.5 miles (four kilometers) you’ll see a sign post for Drombeg. Most visitors opt to skip

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When to Get There

In order to feel like you have Drombeg Stone Circle all to yourself, try to arrive early in the morning. Winter solstice, when the setting sun lines up with the recumbent stone at the head of the circle, is the most atmospheric time to visit.

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Fulacht Fiadh

A short stroll west of the stones lie the ruins of two Iron Age huts, and a fulacht fiadh, a traditional outdoor kitchen, which includes a hearth on which stones were heated and a trough into which hot stones were dropped to boil the water.

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