– From the Rule of St. Benedict, c. 540 AD, translated by Owen Ó Súilleabháin
We gather together in a beautiful rural setting, on the banks of the River Fergus, near Clarecastle in Co. Clare. You reside within the renovated walls of an 18th century garrison, the surrounding lands once held by the indigenous King of Thomond, and subsequently the de Clare family.
It is within this ancient Gaelic kingdom of Thomond where our voyage will unfold as we venture to places of holy pilgrimage both ancient and contemporary. Given the moniker “the Golden Vale” because of its fertile and lush agricultural, it is the perfect setting for our journey which will in no doubt inspire your own contemplations beyond the “Golden Veil”.
Each morning we gather for a session of song, story, poetry and myth, opening us up for a day of exploration through the ancient and holy lands of the surroundings. This lived and shared experience of the Celtic imagination can fortify us and nourish us with a renewed sense of grounded and generous soulfulness.
Each day, we walk the pilgrim path to ancient sites and places of stunning natural beauty. The walking will not be strenuous, but on one or two occasions, we will lead a longer walk — to be followed by a warm, hearty supper and the nourishment of Irish music.
All the makings for a hearty self-prepared breakfast are provided daily. We share an abundant lunch and dinner each day, except for two or three meals when you will explore an Irish town and its offerings. You will be lavished by Ireland’s organic and indigenous ingredients! At certain feasts, we will learn about the artisan food culture from those leading the culinary resurgence in Ireland.
We stay in a lovingly renovated home which was originally a soldier’s barracks dating back as far as 1778. This wonderful secluded accommodation is situated alongside the River Fergus and the ruins of a castle dating to the Middle Ages. We will occupy the three houses present; Thomond House, Castle House and the Coach House which are all situated around a Courtyard with access to a beautiful walled garden to the rear. Here we will create a circle of friendship, gathering in the kitchen, around an oak-wood table and wood-burning stove, or in the gardens when the sun blesses us with its presence.
The cost for the this tour is $4495. This includes Nóirín, Owen, and Moley's service as lecturers, singers, and workshop leaders, and the time of the friends and experts who will meet us along the way. It includes your private room and all meals--except two or three on your own. It includes all transport in-country during the trip, and the service of our charming guides and drivers. Flights are not included in the cost of the tour.