St. Brendan's Clonfert Cathedral

St. Brendan's Clonfert Cathedral, Ballinasloe

St. Brendan's Clonfert Cathedral

St. Brendan's Clonfert Cathedral
4
Popular mentions

4.0
37 reviews
Excellent
20
Very good
8
Average
7
Poor
1
Terrible
1

DublinFlyer
Dublin, Ireland376 contributions
Little gem of stone carving
Aug 2020 • Solo
A 12th little cathedral with richly carved surrounds of the entrance, worth seeking out and stopping by to take pictures of the features of the doorway.
Written 3 August 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

A C
Cork, Ireland23 contributions
ancient
Sep 2019
Well worth a visit if you're interested in Irish ecclesiastical history. I think it's maintained by C of I. Can be difficult to locate in the network of country roads
Written 15 December 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Archaeobuff
Sydney, Australia1,730 contributions
Famous for its Romanesque door and St. Brendan the Navigator.
Aug 2019
I was the only one at this very old mediaeval church in the boondocks of Ireland. The door is magnificent and fragile with, unusually, animals depicted around it.
I found St. Brendan’s grave easily. He is reputed to have sailed off to America with 12 mates in the 6th century in a coracle. A guy called Tim Severin repeated the journey in a coracle to prove it could have happened a few decades ago.
No toilets or other facilities as this is just a small parish church with a long history.
Written 16 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

laoiscyclist
70 contributions
Clonfert Cathedral (Saint Brendan's Cathedral)
May 2019 • Solo
Stunning Church originally constructed in the 11th Century and on a site which was once a Monastery founded in the 6th Century by Saint Brendan, the Navigator. Hiberno Romanesque Arch entrance is amazing and full of detail. Inside is a treasure trove of carvings including a Mermaid and Wyvern. A beautiful and stunning piece of Architecture in a tranquil location..... Not to be missed.
Written 23 May 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

karen g
Galway, Ireland285 contributions
A well presented, beautiful architectural cathedral.
Jan 2019 • Friends
My first visit here and was very impressed with the stain glassand how well maintained it was.It was a very spiritual experience for me.
Written 15 January 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Tony2Phones
Western Ireland, Ireland21,424 contributions
Worth finding
Jul 2018 • Friends
Perhaps not the easiest place to find and a detour off any given route between main spots the cathedral is worth looking for.

Clearly Church of Ireland the main point of note and claim to fame is the Romanesque Arched doorway. There is a lot more to St' Brendans than just a door.

There are a few excellent stained glass windows wonderful carved stone and for a building of its age the place is in very good order thanks to some careful and sympathetic restoration work.

Clearly dusty from lack of use and dare I say care the interior has some notable features from the tiled floor to the arched ceiling it seems the longer you look the more you find to look at.
Written 16 July 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Fran-Maria
Tipperary, Ireland194 contributions
something magical about this place.
Oct 2017
It's not often you feel different when visiting places but this is one of those. I have been here on three occasions and enjoyed each and every one of them. when you come to the cross roads there are churches both left and right.
Written 2 June 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

William O
Milwaukee, WI109 contributions
The Navigator’s rest
May 2017 • Friends
At the end of his sea journeys, Saint Brendan was buried here at one of the many churches he had founded. The later building on the site is famous for the carved heads in the gable above its entryway, each staring from a triangular inset or the arches of an arcade.

Parking is along a gravel strip southwest of the church, by which a low stone wall runs. A small iron gate set into the wall is labeled for Saint Brendan’s Tree and the Nun’s Walk, with an added DANGER - UNSAFE SITE marker. There was no keeping us from the path to the wishing tree, a great horse chestnut festooned with ribbons and cloths and surrounded by votive offerings. The trail continues into the woods, where it opens on a long, still lane overarched by enormous yews. We returned safely to the road and the churchyard.

Below the staring gable heads are grotesque animal faces, to which the smiling figures of churchmen on the door jambs are a happy contrast. The church door was wide open, allowing swallows who lodge in the ceiling trusses to pass down and out and back in. We sat a while in the quiet, admiring the stained glass and the painted pipes of the organ. If you look carefully at the chancel arch, you can make out carvings of angels, a dragon, and a mermaid who is far from the sea.

As we left, we scanned the walls just inside the door, where older grave slabs are protected from further wear and several remarkable wooden memorial panels are displayed. Each of them names and recalls the decedent, who is depicted with a polychrome figure carved in strong relief.
Written 16 November 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Dfinnerty
Athlone, Ireland56 contributions
A very niche visit, not a family visit vene
Jun 2017 • Family
Suffering from long years of disrepair and have never been developed to its tourism potential this. Visitors may be disappointed unless they have a keen interest . No information or interpretive facilities and only open during summer months. Its more for photographers that for anything else.
Written 27 September 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

NHjo
Saco, ME2,827 contributions
Finally found this!
Sep 2017 • Solo
When I went to Ireland the year before, I couldn't find this church, but this time the owner of the nearby B&B I stayed in gave me great directions. There's signage, but then you come to a crossroads and it disappears. Anyway, it was worth the aggravation. Stunning 12th-century church, and that great door with all the carved animal and human heads! The inside of the church is also wonderful -- has some stained glass, wooden benches and pulpit, and lots of stone, of course. Very spiritual, kind of eerie in a way.
Written 17 September 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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