WELCOME TO THE FIRST PLACE
THE HEART OF ANCIENT ULSTER
THE CENTRE OF IRISH CHRISTIANITY
THE ARCHBISHOP ROBINSON TRAIL
This special map enables you to follow our story. From one of Ireland’s most ancient spiritual sites and St Patrick’s founding of Armagh as the centre of Christianity through to its re-creation as a glorious Georgian city and its marvellous contemporary attractions.
Let us take you on a journey through time, from one of the great ceremonial temples of ancient Ireland, through to the dawn of Irish Christianity, two historic cathedrals and the shaping of one of Ireland’s most gracious Georgian cities.
Having returned to these shores, St. Patrick travelled to Armagh to build a stone church on Ard Macha, ‘the height of Macha’, which gave Armagh its name.
The best way to explore the Georgian heritage of Armagh? Follow the trail of the man who created it!
Journey to the stars at Northern Ireland’s only Planetarium and enjoy all kinds of outdoor fun including trekking through beautiful nature reserves on the
At the centre of Northern Ireland, the area is a superb driving base to all kinds of iconic locations, including the Walled City of Derry (1 hr, 45 minutes), the Giants Causeway (2 hours), the Haunted Forest in Game of Thrones (1 hour, 15 minutes), Titanic Belfast (1 hour) and the Seamus Heaney Homeplace (1 hour). It’s also within an easy drive time to Dublin (1 hr 30 minutes).
Discover that enthralling history at the centre, absorbing the stories of King Conor MacNessa and his Red Branch Knights. Greatest amongst these was the mighty Cuchulainn, who as Setanta was Ireland’s most famous hurler. Then walk around this globally renowned archaeological site, whose greatest secrets are still to be revealed.
Immerse yourself in The First Place. Visit our iconic sites, meet our people. Embark on an enchanted journey of discovery. Weave your own Story!
Why not enter this world yourself? Living History experiences allow you to dress like a Celtic Warrior and learn the skills needed to survive in the Iron Age world.
of the Irish High Kings, with Ulster. St Patrick travelled on this road, no doubt attracted by the importance of the site, when he founded the nearby city of Armagh (‘the height of Macha’). Follow him on the next stage of our journey, just down the road to Armagh city itself.
DISCOVER THE ENTHRALLING HISTORY AT THE CENTRE, ABSORBING THE STORIES OF KING CONOR MACNESSA AND HIS RED BRANCH KNIGHTS.
rom the outskirts of Armagh take the road circling up Sally Hill to St. Patrick’s (Church of Ireland) Cathedral. Built on the site of St. Patrick’s church of 445AD, it is one of Europe’s most famous cathedrals. Along the same ancient road as St. Patrick travelled, the greatest of Irish High Kings, Brian Ború, came to the church in 1004, to make an offering of gold at its altar. In doing so he recognised Armagh as the centre of Irish Christianity. A plaque records this event in the cathedral grounds where he is buried, while a statue of Brian Ború can be found in the beautiful cathedral gardens. The church we see today was designed by a 13th century Archbishop of Armagh, Mael Padriagh Ua Scannail. You can explore the atmospheric, ancient crypt he built, where Archbishop
The Navan Fort was situated on the ancient road that linked Tara, seat
Robinson, creator of Georgian Armagh, is buried. From St. Patrick’s (Church of Ireland) Cathedral, you can glimpse the lofty spires of St. Patrick’s (Roman Catholic) Cathedral. Based on the spot on Sandy Hill where St. Patrick saved the life of a fawn, this magnificent cathedral was built in several phases between 1840-1904 and is famous for its beautiful mosaic decorative stone. Tours are available of both cathedrals. Delve deeper into the past at our next stop. Just north of the Catholic cathedral you will find the Cardinal Tomas O’Fiaich Memorial Library and Archive, which holds internationally significant collections on Irish and church history, Irish language and sport and the Irish abroad.
hen Richard Robinson became Archbishop of Armagh in 1765 he vowed to make this a city worthy of being Ireland’s Christian capital. And so he did!
WONDER IN THE DELIGHTFUL GROUNDS OF THE BISHOP’S PALACE AND STABLES From here wind up Sally Hill to the world famous St. Patrick’s (Church of Ireland) Cathedral, restored by Robinson. Nearby is No 5 Vicars’ Hill, which he built to house church records and which now hosts all kinds of historical gems, like Roman and medieval coins, Neolithic stone tools, Bronze Age weapons and Irish hand bells. ‘The healing place of the soul’ reads the (Greek) inscription above the doorway of the Armagh Robinson Library, just around the corner.
Here, at Northern Ireland’s oldest public library, you will find the Archbishop’s priceless collection of books, as well as an original copy of ‘Gulliver’s Travels’, with Jonathan Swift’s handwritten notes in the margins. Now down to the elegant Mall Robinson designed and along to the nearby Armagh Observatory, which has been recording the weather continuously since 1795 and houses Ireland’s oldest telescope. Explore the Astropark, a scale model of the universe, in its grounds and enjoy a dazzling journey through space at the adjacent Planetarium. Back on the Mall, you will find the Royal Irish Fusiliers Museum, Milford House Collection and Armagh County Museum, whose collections capture the stories of Armagh people over the centuries.
PALACE OF DREAMS
THE ORCHARD COUNTY
A TASTE OF PERFECTION
It’s not often we get the chance to follow in the footsteps of archbishops. But, when Archbishop Robinson fulfilled his ambition of building a glorious Georgian Armagh, he wanted everyone to share his vision.
For a sumptuous exploration of Armagh’s countryside, why not leave the historic gems of Armagh City behind you for a time and journey deep into the rolling drumlins of the ‘orchard county’.
Within a few miles of beautiful countryside you can discover the secrets of the amazing Armagh traditional cider renaissance and taste the difference too!
owhere is this more evident than the 300 acres of beautiful parkland that contains the delightful neo-classical Archbishop’s Palace. In the grounds themselves, are several historic buildings to explore too, including a holy well dedicated to St. Brigid and the ruins of a Franciscan friary.
THE PALACE WAS HOME TO SUCCESSIVE ARCHBISHOPS FOR OVER 200 YEARS TO 1975 Today Robinson’s Palace hosts a magnificent exhibition by an artist who has come to embody Armagh’s culture and traditions, the internationally acclaimed JB (Brian) Vallely. Wander the floors of colourful paintings that adorn the walls and you will discover subjects as varied
as the death of mythical warrior Cuchulainn and a road bowler in action. The former was bound to the Red Knights of Ulster at Emain Macha (the nearby Navan Fort), the latter taking part in a sport deeply embedded in Armagh culture. Growing up in the lovely countryside of County Armagh, Vallely himself is an accomplished musician who became ‘besotted’ by the pipes. He founded the Armagh Pipers Club in 1966 and helped create Armagh’s famous William Kennedy Piping Festival. Hence the superb paintings of Irish pipers and fiddle players who seem to be actually in motion as they play. Another famous son of the area was Tommy Makem, an internationally celebrated Irish folk musician, artist, poet and storyteller. The Tommy Makem Arts and Community Centre in Keady commemorates his life and times.
ravel in early May and it seems the entire countryside around places like Loughgall, Richhill and Kilmore is tinted with apple blossom, varying in hue from delicate pink to vibrant fuchsia. It is said Armagh and apples first came together when St. Patrick himself planted an apple tree at Ceangoba, an ancient settlement to the east of the city in the 5th century. In 1690, King William III’s cider maker, Paul Le Harper, was summoned to Portadown to make cider for the Williamite forces not long before the Battle of the Boyne. Traditional Armagh cider is now once more a popular choice for connoisseurs. While many traditional varieties of apple were grown, the apple which has dominated the thriving Armagh apple industry is the Bramley. So it’s partly thanks to a Mr Nicholson of Cranagill, near Loughgall, who brought the Bramley to Armagh
egin about four miles east of Portadown, at Ballinteggart House. Here the Troughton family have been growing apples for four generations, though some of their orchards date back to the 1700s.
back in 1884, that the Armagh Bramley has been awarded PGI (Protected Geographical Indication) status. This is thanks to its special taste and composition, characteristics and long shelf life, unlike any other cooking apple in the world.
Their Armagh Cider Company is now a byword for excellence, as modern tastes demand the purity and quality only a traditional cider maker can supply. The apples are harvested between September and November. The apples are hand pressed, with yeast added and left to ferment until bottling time in May or June.
The short apple blossom season leads to summer growth, before the apples are harvested between September and November. To learn more about the orchards, why not follow the Armagh Bramley map (download from Google Play), which explores the orchard areas and surrounding countryside?
Discover this ancient craft for yourself on regular orchard tours and open farm days at Ballinteggart House, when you can taste the apples and ciders and even make your own juice.
IT IS SAID ARMAGH AND APPLES FIRST CAME TOGETHER WHEN ST. PATRICK HIMSELF PLANTED AN APPLE TREE AT CEANGOBA
Now make the short journey eastwards to Long Meadow Cider, outside Portadown. Here you will
FE MCWILLIAM GALLERY AND STUDIO
BANBRIDGE: THE LINEN LANDS
As you journey around the beautiful orchard county of Armagh, be sure to immerse yourself in the fascinating heritage of the area as you go.
The perfect place to begin your journey of discovery, the FE McWilliam Gallery and Studio not only celebrates the work of the acclaimed sculptor but is a gateway to the cultural heartland of this region.
The beautiful County Down countryside around Banbridge was once at the heart of a world famous linen industry.
BEGIN YOUR ODYSSEY AT THE ARGORY, ON THE BANKS OF THE RIVER BLACKWATER Once home to the MacGeough Bond family, it hasn’t changed since 1900. Walk its wooded riverside estate and enjoy delicious home baked treats at the Courtyard Coffee Shop. Continue south to nearby Ardress House, another National Trust property. This 17th century farmhouse, remodelled in Georgian times, has fine collections of 18th century paintings and early Irish furniture. It has its own apple orchards and the famous Armagh Bramley apple is celebrated with Apple Sunday events during October.
Continue southwards to Sloan’s House Museum & Interpretive Centre, Loughgall to trace the formation of the Orange Order after the 1795 Battle of the Diamond (and explore their collection of Orange Memorabilia). Before leaving Loughgall, stroll the open farmland and orchards of the tranquil Loughgall Country Park, once home to the Cope family. You can even play a round of golf here! A couple of miles away, near the Battle of the Diamond site, two atmospheric houses - Dan Winters House and Cottage offer a unique insight into that period. Sit down by the ancient hearth and let storytellers describe the battle to you. Some 20 minutes west, in a castle perched atop Tandragee, you can visit the famous Tayto crisp factory and enjoy tours and tastings!
t’s conveniently located off the A1 at the entrance to Banbridge and hosts an award-winning restaurant, Quails, which specialises in delicious local produce. One of the finest sculptors to emerge from the UK or Ireland, Frederick McWilliam was inspired by the landscape around him as he grew up in Banbridge. Later he made his way to England where he became a close friend of legendary sculptor Henry Moore.
FREDERICK MCWILLIAM WAS INSPIRED BY THE LANDSCAPE AROUND HIM The gallery not only hosts McWilliam’s own work - including the extraordinary ‘Women of Belfast’, a hugely powerful series of small bronzes that depict The Troubles but a rolling line-up of international artists and sculptors that changes four times a year.
Walk through the tranquil garden space, where you will find several McWilliam pieces. Explore his recreated studio and trace his remarkable artistic development through the years. The dimensions are exactly those of the studio he built in his London garden in the early 1950s and where he worked until shortly before his death in 1992. His work can also be found in the Museum of Modern Art, New York and Tate Britain in London.
Begin your journey at the Lough Neagh Discovery Centre on Oxford Island, the perfect place to enjoy the tranquil natural world around meandering Lough Neagh, the largest inland lake in the UK or Ireland.
Eugene and Felix will first show you how flax was scutched (isolating the fibres which will be spun into linen yarn) in ancient and recent times. Then they will set in motion the mill’s great water wheel, to power the rollers and scutching machines. Now they separate parts of the stalk between two metal rollers and remove the chaff on a turning wheel, to leave the fibres ready for the next stage - spinning. While in the area, take time to explore the charming town of Dromore and its lovely stone cathedral. In 510 AD St Coleman built a “daub and wattle” church on this site, made of woven lattices
Now southwards down the A1 back to Banbridge and enjoy the lovely drive towards Rathfriland. Patrick Brontë, father of the famous Brontë sisters - Charlotte, Emily and Anne was born in the area in 1777. Take a well signposted tour of the Brontë Homeland, which starts at Drumballyroney Church and School (now an interpretative venue, book in advance). Follow the story of the family through the buildings which survive in the area like Alice McClory’s cottage, Patrick’s mother’s childhood home, Glascar School, where he taught in the 1790s, and his birthplace at Emdale. Tours of McConville’s Scutching Mill are by appointment only.
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While you are in Banbridge, take advantage of its famous independent stores. More retail therapy is available at The Boulevard, a modern shopping and entertainment complex near the FE McWilliam Gallery. Nestled on the edge of the town centre, Solitude Park was once home to both the railway line and linen mills. It is now used as an events space, playground and pleasant space for a relaxing walk.
Today, yarn is fed into the looms in much the same way as always. You can see the chattering looms gradually recreating the beautiful designs before watching Ferguson’s
We begin the second part of our Linen Lands tour in Dromore, just a few minutes northwards down the A1.
Best of all you can tour an original scutching mill (see next panel) and visit the last maker of quality Irish Damask linen, Fergusons of Banbridge, to see how it is created.
For further information go to www.femcwilliam.com
A NATURAL WONDERLAND
or wooden strips, probably with a roof of reeds taken from the nearby River Lagan. A motte and bailey, built by John De Courcy after the Normans arrived in the 13th century, overlooks the town.
skilled seamstresses putting the final touches to the linen. Working on vintage sewing machines, they hem and stitch the Damask linen into the sheets, handkerchiefs, tablecloths and napkins that will be sent around the globe.
Founded by local man Thomas Ferguson in the 19th century, Fergusons sell their linen to several royal families. Their fabrics are bought by the likes of La Scala in Milan, the Royal Ballet in London’s Covent Garden and leading designers, such as Ralph Lauren.
THE SCUTCHING MILL
ocal farmers brought raw flax to McConville’s Scutching Mill, just outside Dromore, from the late 1800s until its closure in the 1950s. Today, McConville’s is a working museum, hosted by Eugene and Felix McConville, whose grandfather built the present mill.
oday, you can still see the great houses of the families that made their fortunes from the trade, as well as old scutching and spinning mills, on special tours along the Bann, the river that powered the local linen industry.
Next door are many personal items that enable you to sense the presence of the sculptor as he worked - a pair of slippers, an overcoat, his set of tools, the cans of paint he used, even the original wood from which he carved his masterpieces.
his National Nature Reserve offers lots of trails and walks though shoreline, woods and flower rich meadows. Depending on the time of year you’ve a great chance of seeing a host of birds, such as whoopers, Brent geese, tufted duck, goldeneye and reed buntings. Lough Neagh is also the source of another famous PGI status food. Its famous eels have been fished commercially for centuries. The prized catch of the local fishermen is largely exported to Europe but you can enjoy smoked local eel in several restaurants in this area. From Oxford Island, head southeast to the Craigavon Golf & Ski Centre, just outside Lurgan, the only one of its kind in Northern Ireland, and spend a glorious time skiing down its 200ft slope (there’s snowboarding, snow tubing and snowblading too).
Linen tours of Banbridge and further afield can be arranged by the FE McWilliam Centre on +44 28 4062 3322
Enjoy a short retail stop at the enticing Rushmere Shopping Centre and then drive to the Craigavon Watersports Centre, by the lovely Craigavon Lakes. Any number of activities are on offer here, including water-based fun like banana boating, water-skiing, windsurfing, sailing or canoeing. There’s also excellent cycle and walking routes. Enjoy a short retail stop at the enticing Rushmere Shopping Centre and then drive to Craigavon Watersports Centre, by Craigavon Lakes.
Founded by the Brownlow family and developed through its successful linen trade, Lurgan has a fascinating heritage to explore.
WEAVE YOUR OWN STORY Tales, Trails & Tours
ts finest building is unquestionably the magnificent Scottish sandstone Brownlow House. Commissioned in the Elizabethan style by Charles Brownlow, the first Lord Lurgan, its 350-acre demesne is now Lurgan Park, Northern Ireland’s largest public park.
American wartime experience.
Tours start in the Octagon Room, where the marble panels were worked on by skilled craftsmen from Italy. In the adjacent library you will learn all about Master McGrath, a record-breaking greyhound owned by the second Lord Lurgan and so famous he was presented to Queen Victoria.
Explore the vibrant industrial town on the banks of the River Bann and follow the development of the town over 400 years. Also available to book online are tours of the historic Carleton Street Orange Hall. Tours can be easily booked online at www.portadownheritagetours.co.uk
During the Second World War Brownlow House was the headquarters for US troops in Northern Ireland and you can visit the room where General Eisenhower, Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces, stayed for two nights. An enthralling museum records the
The award winning Food and Cider Festival held in September each year provides a feast of gastro experiences and food adventures with award-winning Food Heartland Chefs and artisan food producers. Dine on the lawns of an orchard, join a food tour, eat at a pop up restaurant and savour one of our many award-winning ciders.
THE FIRST PLACE
LURGAN TO PORTADOWN
Now make the short journey south to experience traditional country life at Tannaghmore Gardens Farm and Museum. You can see rare traditional farm animals, like Irish Moiled Cattle and Saddleback pigs, stroll around the lovely gardens that surround the Georgian farmhouse and discover farming life in bygone days in the Barn Museum.
The McKeever and Troughton familes welcome pre-arranged groups to experience a guided tour - walking through the orchards, learning and understanding about apple growing, viewing apple storage and cider production. You can even help with apple picking at harvest time! It’s the perfect opportunity to explore the heritage and techniques of this traditional industry.
THE GREAT HOUSES OF ORCHARD COUNTY
agnificent houses, historic cottages, fascinating museums and even a castle turned crisp factory await!
find the McKeever family, third generation apple growers, whose award-winning ciders range from smooth and mellow to boisterous and dry!
Armagh Visitor Information Centre, 40 English Street, Armagh, BT61 7BA T: + 44 (0) 28 3752 1800 | E: email@example.com
UNCOVER A RICH CULTURAL SCENE, WITH LITERARY FESTIVALS AND WORKSHOPS, ART EXHIBITIONS AND TRAILS AND WONDERFUL TRADITIONAL MUSIC.
Explore a fascinating linen and industrial heritage on guided tours and visit magnificent stately houses.
egin your journey just outside the city, at the Navan Centre and Fort. Taking its Irish name, Emain Macha, from the curse of a Celtic Goddess, this was ancient Ulster’s most important sacred site and was at the heart of the Ulster Cycle of legends.
Banbridge Visitor Information Centre, 200 Newry Road, Banbridge, BT32 3NB T: +44 (0) 28 4062 0232 | E: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tour around the beautiful orchard county, sampling handmade traditional cider and enjoy any number of delicious artisan food experiences in this famous Food Heartland.
shores of Lough Neagh or ambling along an old canal.
f /VisitArmagh // t @Visit_Armagh // i VisitArmagh
n route you will encounter Celtic goddesses and legendary warriors, Ireland’s most famous high king, two magnificent cathedrals and so much more.
The traditional market town of Portadown is known for its independent shops and eateries offering local produce. To best appreciate the town’s rich heritage join a Portadown Town Heritage Tour.
From the centre of Portadown, why not cycle or walk the twenty miles of tranquil countryside to Newry. You can hire a bike at Scarva (midway along the route - June to August) and explore locks and old lock keepers houses along the way, including Moneypenny’s Lock.
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Armagh Visitor Attractions Archbishop’s Palace 54.340504, -6.650868
A linen factory, founded in the 19th century, still supplying leading designers and royalty.
The Palace, once home to the Archbishops of Armagh with 300 acres to explore.
Armagh County Museum 54.349440, -6.649418
TO GIANTS CAUSEWAY
SEAMUS HEANEY HOMEPLACE
THE SAINT PATRICK’S WAY: THE PILGRIM WALK
Armagh Observatory & Astropark 54.353255, -6.649894
Armagh Piper’s Club 54.347386, -6.652604
Armagh Planetarium 54.352307, -6.648192
Armagh Robinson Library 54.348638, -6.656932
Royal Irish Fusiliers Museum 54.350708, -6.651875
St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Cathedral 54.352833, -6.658918
TO HAUNTED FOREST, GAME OF THRONES
Corran Cross Roads
Ardress House 54.443206, -6.592800
The Argory 54.465041, -6.657715
Tayto Factory 54.355555, -6.416864
Dan Winter’s Cottage & House 54.427620, -6.554839
TO DUBLIN & IRELAND’S ANCIENT EAST
Sloan’s House, Loughall 54.411024, -6.600509
Tommy Makem Arts and Community Centre 54.248900, -6.703835 A multi- purpose centre celebrating the musician’s life and times.
Craigavon Lakes & Water Sports Centre 54.475144, -6.356730 Enjoy water based activities including banana boating, water-skiing and more.
Moneypenny’s Lock 54.398990, -6.413278 18th Century lock-keeper’s house and stables on the Newry Canal with a blacksmith workshop.
Lough Neagh Discovery Centre & Oxford Island 54.496752, -6.382678 Enjoy opportunities for bird watching and learning more about the flora and fauna of the lough.
Rushmere Shopping Centre 54.449360, -6.390667 Offers a wide range of shopping opportunities with great High Street names.
High Street Mall 54.424112, -6.445112 Offers a wide range of shopping opportunities all under one roof.
The Meadows Shopping Centre 54.421487, -6.438426 Offers a wide range of shopping opportunities all under one roof.
Millennium Court Arts Centre 54.422213, -6.444200 MCAC is a young, fresh and experimental arts centre focusing on contemporary visual and verbal arts.
A museum illustrating the formation of the Orange order.
TO WILD ATLANTIC WAY
Craigavon Golf & Ski Centre 54.476456, -6.356474 Home to an outdoor artificial ski slope, plus two golf courses and putting greens.
These properties were the focal points of an attack known as the Battle of the Diamond in 1795.
Tannaghmore Gardens Farm and Museum 54.465115, -6.383916 Experience traditional country life with rare farm animals.
Home to the famous Tayto crisps, produced in the castle in Tandragee. 07
Portadown Town Heritage Tour 54.420841, -6.445607 Learn more about Portadown & its heritage.
Another National Trust property, once home to the MacGeough Bond family and unchanged since 1900.
A 17th century farmhouse remodelled in Georgian times, located within Orchard county. 05
Long Meadow Cider 54.420004, -6.471117
Portadown - Newry Towpath 54.424294, -6.446639 A 20 mile off road cycle and walking route, following the former canal. Bike hire is available at Scarva.
Offering award winning ciders which range from smooth and mellow to boisterous & dry.
Owned by the Troughton Family, who have been growing apples for some 4 generations.
Armagh Cider Company 54.407876, -6.485845
The St Patrick’s Way: The Pilgrim Walk 54.344004, -6.702558 An 82-mile trail connecting Armagh and Downpatrick, the two locations most closely connected to St Patrick.
Home to a year round programme of events, classes and exhibitions.
The Cathedral, with imposing twin spires overlooks the City on an elevated site.
The Market Place Theatre & Arts Centre 54.348411, -6.654248
Brontë Country 54.263306, -6.144311 The birthplace of Patrick Brontë, the father of the famous literary Brontë sisters.
Founded by Saint Patrick, the present Cathedral dates from 1268.
St. Patrick’s Church of Ireland Cathedral 54.348142, -6.656029
Offering a fresh approach to the interpretation of Irish military history.
A hidden gem with collections and curiosities.
Solitude Park 54.348060, -6.267175 A green open space nestled in the centre of the town.
No 5 Vicar’s Hill 54.348146, -6.657060
One of Ireland’s most famous and important archaeological sites.
A magnificent collection of items belonging to the McCrum family, linen trailblazers.
F.E. McWilliam Gallery & Studio 54.331118, -6.285644 Celebrating the work of this acclaimed sculptor.
Navan Centre & Fort 54.343859, -6.702060
26 27 28
Milford House Collection 54.347748, -6.646495
Home to over more than 40000 books and historical artefacts.
Cardinal Tomas O’Fiaich Memorial Library and Archive 54.354286, -6.659409
TO BELFAST, TITANIC
The Boulevard 54.331950, -6.276099 A modern shopping and entertainment complex.
The oldest public library in Northern Ireland.
TO WALLED CITY OF DERRY
Offering a unique experience, simply “out of this world.”
Dromore Cathedral 54.414815, -6.151551 A pretty stone cathedral, dating back to St Coleman in 510AD.
At the forefront of traditional music education since its conception in 1966.
Landscaped gardens containing scale models of the Solar System and Universe.
McConville’s Scutching Mill 54.411210, -6.122010 In operation from the late 1800’s, closing in the 1950’s and is now a working museum.
Ireland’s first County Museum opened in 1937.
Ferguson’s Irish Linen Factory 54.350165, -6.285423
Brownlow House 54.465944, -6.328574 A magnificent Scottish sandstone building, commissioned in the Elizabethan style.
Lurgan Park 54.464400, -6.326234 The largest public park in Northern Ireland with some 350 acres of green space to explore.
It is advisable to check with the individual attractions as opening times may vary before visiting or see visitArmagh.com for further information.
This is based upon Crown Copyright and is reproduced with the permission of Land and Property Services under delegated authority from the Controller of Her Majesty’s Stationery Office, © Crown Copyright and database right NIMA CS&LA 156
GEORGIAN ARMAGH AND FABULOUS CITY FESTIVALS
HOME OF SAINT PATRICK FESTIVAL
ARMAGH FOOD & CIDER FESTIVAL
The unique heritage and culture of Armagh is celebrated right through the year.
St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated all around the world but only in Armagh City will you discover the real man!
n July, the John Hewitt Summer School brings leading figures in the arts to creative workshops in Armagh City. Hewitt was an influential poet, art historian, collector and political activist. The great Irish musician and composer Charles Wood was born in Armagh and received his early musical education at St. Patrick’s (Church of Ireland) Cathedral. His legacy of over 250 sacred works is celebrated each August at the Charles Wood Summer School. The famous Uilleann pipe (inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity) tradition of the area is honoured at the William Kennedy Piping Festival each November. Organised by the Armagh Pipers Club, its concerts & workshops feature some of Ireland’s finest traditional musicians. The Armagh Georgian Festival takes place on the last weekend of November and
includes a lavish Georgian banquet at Archbishop Robinson’s Palace, talks, tours and a magnificent Christmas market.
atrick chose Armagh to begin his mission to convert the Irish to Christianity, establishing the Seat of Armagh as the centre of Christian learning in Ireland. Here he built his first stone church, where the magnificent St. Patrick’s (Church of Ireland) Cathedral stands today.
IT IS A CELEBRATION OF ARMAGH CITY’S WONDERFUL GEORGIAN BUILDINGS, ARCHITECTURE, CULTURE AND TRADITIONS.
The Home of Saint Patrick Festival celebrates the patron saint’s historic and spiritual links to Armagh with a lively and varied showcase of cultural events, pageantry, music, song and dance.
Armagh’s Georgian streets buzz with visitors, evocative Georgian costumed figures and mouthwatering aromas of artisan food. A dramatic lightshow illuminates the Market House and heralds the beginning of the festive season.
During the festival Armagh’s iconic historic buildings and contemporary arts facilities host a fabulous programme of events with leading national and international artists and performers.
Right through the year you can witness a unique part of Armagh’s culture on the roads outside the city - the exhilarating sport of road bowls.
elebrating the famous Armagh Bramley, recognised with PGI status, the award winning festival attracts food lovers to events throughout the county during September’s harvest time.
groups, dance schools, bands and community groups in a riotously colourful display of pageantry, sound and fancy dress. After the sun goes down, take a stroll through the City and check out the two magnificent cathedrals, illuminated for the entire festival period. They look even more impressive in green!
Armagh’s growing number of artisan food producers and award winning chefs are at the heart of the festival. Thanks to them, you can enjoy mouth-watering menus devised by leading chefs, pop up restaurants and cidery tours in award winning orchards.
And while you’re here why not pick up your “passport” and venture out and explore the strikingly beautiful countryside he loved, known today as St. Patrick’s Country. The 82-mile signed ‘Pilgrim’s Walk’ starts at the Navan Centre in Armagh and takes you through many sites connected to Saint Patrick and Christian Heritage. The trail ends at the St. Patrick Centre, Downpatrick.
WHY NOT COME AND ENJOY A FOODIE’S PARADISE IN ARMAGH THIS SEPTEMBER There’s also alfresco dining, craft brews and the finest local produce at atmospheric artisan food markets as well as all kinds of special
The spectacular festival procession weaves its way through the heart of Armagh city as street theatre companies join with local
TRAILS & WALKS
From the rolling drumlins of the orchard county to the shores of Lough Neagh, welcome to the Food Heartland.
If you are ready to explore at your own pace and follow your own timetable, there are many established trails and tours for you to download and follow to discover the beauty of our landscape and the fascinating heritage of Armagh.
he Food Heartland has been developed by the awardwinning chefs and artisan food producers for which the area is now famous. Here, where two of Northern Ireland’s three PGI (Protected Geographical Indicator) products Armagh Bramley apples and Lough Neagh eels are proudly celebrated, the region has now taken a leading role in the renaissance of Northern Ireland’s food scene As well as the award-winning traditional cider makers and the growing popularity of smoked Lough Neagh eel (available in several local eateries), the area is famous for its bakeries, breads, potatoes and meat, including pork (Portadown was the centre of Ireland’s pork industry). At the wonderful leading restaurants which belong to the Food Heartland Group, as well as
cafes and delis, you can savour tantalising dishes, old favourites with a local twist made from home grown and locally sources products. Vegetables freshly dug, herbs just picked from the garden, local honey, meat from locally reared livestock and fish fresh from the Atlantic Ocean abound Hearty breakfasts and sumptuous dinners are also part of our accommodation offer, whether it’s friendly B+B’s, Georgian guesthouses or fine hotels.
WELCOME TO A GASTRONOMIC EXPERIENCE YOU’LL NEVER FORGET. WELCOME TO THE FOOD HEARTLAND
Armagh’s award-winning Food and Cider Festival has become one of the great foodie experiences of the Northern Irish calendar.
hy not follow the public art trail through Armagh city centre, discovering the secrets of the historic buildings you encounter. An easy to follow map can be picked up at the Visitor Information Centre in the city. Learn more about the city through an organised walking tour. Uncover more hidden gems and interesting facts around every corner. These tours take place from June September and can be booked through visitArmagh.com/walking
EXPLORE OUR HISTORIC STREETSCAPES BY ENGAGING WITH OUR ARTWORKS ‘For the love of Emer’ depicts Cuchulainn, the legendary Irish warrior, while the ‘Saints and Scholars’ railings were inspired by St. Patrick. ‘Market Days and Fair Days’ depicts the journey from country to market to city. These
intricate pieces bring the city centre to life. On your way look out for 22 shy angels and gargoyles, whose eyes follow you from unlikely locations around the city centre. Having explored the city’s many connections to St. Patricks, you can explore further afield on a walking trail. The Saint Patrick’s Way: The Pilgrim’s Walk is an 82-mile trail connecting Armagh and Downpatrick, the two sites most closely related to St. Patrick. This walk is suitable for leisure or pilgrimages. A 92-mile driving version of the trail winds its way to places like Bangor, the Ards Peninsula, Downpatrick, Newry and Armagh, sites all with links to St. Patricks life and legacy.
gourmet events. An urban orchard is at the heart of the festival, providing more gastro experiences and food adventures. You can also enjoy food trails and tours through Armagh’s Food Heartland, learning about the wonderful local produce, including that other PGI rated delicacy, the Lough Neagh eel. Guests can enjoy talking with chefs and producers and hear about their passion and commitment to food and of course have the opportunity to taste and sample as they go. There’s cookery schools and much more besides.