STONE CIRCLES AND STANDING STONES

STONE CIRCLES AND STANDING STONES

Shrouded in mystery, the ancient sites and structures of stone circles and standing stones are intriguing places to explore during your time in Galway. Although it’s not always clear as to what the purpose of these sites were, many of them date back for centuries, which is incredible in itself that they have managed to last the test of time!

Stone circles found in Ireland tend to be composed of smaller stones, however all stone circles tend to have the same layout in that the largest stones of the circle form the entrance, the lowermost / axial stone was erected opposite, and the passage was usually orientated towards the sun, the moon or particular stars. Although there’s uncertainty over their exact use, many believe the stone circles were used for rituals and ceremonies.

Similarly, the use of standing stones in the past is also relatively unknown. Some believe that they may have been used as markers of ancient routes through the land, meeting places, territory indicators or memorials for a burial which took place there. Some standing stones found date to the Celtic era in Ireland and are also called Ogham stones. These stones bear the Celtic markings on the stone, which distinguish it from other standing stones which existed long before.

Although we may never fully know what these sites were used for, they certainly add mystery, intrigue and fascinating history to the landscape across Galway!

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