Ireland of the Welcomes

Slane Castle

Few Irish villages have welcomed more famous faces than County Meath’s picturesqu­e Slane, writes

- Domhnall O’Donoghue

Domhnall O'Donoghue visits Slane Castle and discovers so much hidden beneath its history

Being a Navan-man makes me biased, but I will always argue that the Royal County of Meath is one of the best destinatio­ns on the Emerald Isle. While the likes of Newgrange, the Hill of Tara and Trim Castle understand­ably receive the lion’s share of the county’s attention, there’s a charming, picture-perfect village here that should not be overlooked: Slane. From adulterous monarchs to rebellious saints, World War poets to internatio­nal rock stars, this pocket-sized delight boasts an extraordin­ary history. Better yet, being just a 45-minute drive from Dublin city, Slane is the perfect afternoon escape from the hustle and bustle of the capital.


Of course, the village’s crown jewel is Slane Castle, standing tall within the lush and dramatic countrysid­e. Framed by the majestic River Boyne, the 18th-century property is the family seat of the Conyngham family - originally a noble Scottish family who settled in County Donegal, in 1611.

Today, Slane Castle is owned by Lord Henry Mount Charles, the eighth Marquess Conyngham, and his wife, Lady Iona. They live nearby in Beauparc, so the responsibi­lity of the day-to-day running of the estate has been left in the capable hands of their son, Alex, along with his wife, Carina.

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