Tory Island. Image © Donegal County Concil
Tory Island’s name conjures up images of majesty and beauty. In fact, as the northernmost outpost of Donegal’s thriving Gaeltacht culture, Tory is home to its own King, Iron Age fords and medieval round towers. Rate birdlife and wild flowers find shelter on the Island. The finest musicians, storytellers and dancers host sessions that linger into the early hours. Torys spectacular cliff scenery is complemented by a rich and varied history which is related in the islanders distinctive Gaelic. Colm Cille figures prominently in the history of this sacred island which he chose as a place of retreat and meditation for his monks. Shipwrecks, poitín smuggling and tales of violent storms have also been drawn into its folklore.
Tory Island off of Donegal has a King and he will meet you on arrival. This is a unique tradition that does not exist anywhere else in Ireland. Tory is where you will encounter Ireland’s only monarch on your travels! The current Rí Thoraí is painter Patsaí Dan Mac Ruaidhrí.
Take in the rugged attractions on the Tory Island Loop walk. This gentle walk will allow you to explore a range of interesting historical sites including a round tower that once protected monks from Viking raids, the ruins of St. Colmcille’s 6th Century monastery and the intriguing Tau Cross.
Experience Tory lifestyle first hand by spending a night in one on the Island and attending one of the regular Céilís. A night on Tory is the perfect opportunity to experience the rich traditional culture of the Island that is expressed through music and dance.
Did you know?
Torys Wishing Stone, Leac na Leannán in Gaeilge, is a flat-topped rock jutting out over the northern cliff-face of Balors Fort. Standing 100 meters above the Atlantic, it invites visitors to make a wish. The cost is risk. Islanders warn that only the foolhardy accept the challenge and step on to the rock to brave a wish. A wish can also be granted to she or he who succeeds in throwing three stones in a row on to the stone.
Daily ferry service from Bun Beag and Machaire Rabhartaigh onboard the Queen of Aran.
Magheroarty Pier, Gotahork, Co. Donegal
Tel. +353 (0)87 188 3710
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