Brú na Bóinne – Newgrange, Knowth and Dowth
The new state of the art, immersive visitor experience focuses on the monuments of the World Heritage Site during the Neolithic period. It transports visitors back 5000 years to the pinnacle of passage tomb building when Brú na Bóinne contained some of the largest buildings in the world.
The exhibits explore the seasonal nature of Stone Age society, the significance of the solar cycle, ceremonies and the monument building process.
Brú na Bóinne Visitor Centre is the starting point for all visits to Newgrange and Knowth. Do not go directly to the monuments as you will not gain entry. Visitors are brought via shuttle bus to the monuments.
New Physical Distancing Experience
From 30th July 2020 until further notice.
Brú na Bóinne Tour – OUTSIDE ONLY
This is the only tour option available and is self-guided.
Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
- It is essential to pre-book tickets online in advance of visit.
- There are no ‘walk-in tickets’ available. Please do not arrive without having booked your tickets in advance as you will not gain entry.
- Pre-booking online is possible from 24 hours up to 7 days in advance of visit.
- A maximum of 12 tickets can be booked online.
- We are currently not able to sell heritage cards
FACE COVERS ARE MANDATORY DURING YOUR VISIT
PLEASE BRING ONE AS THEY ARE NOT SUPPLIED. YOU WILL BE REFUSED ADMSISION WITHOUT ONE*
(*except for those who are excused through the face covering on public transport legislation)
FOR WHEELCHAIR USERS OR VISITORS WHO REQUIRE SPECIAL ASSISTANCE - PLEASE EMAIL firstname.lastname@example.org IN ADVANCE OF BOOKING
Groups: We are not accepting group or school bookings until further notice
Would you like to witness the Winter Solstice at Newgrange? For the very first time the Office of Public Works (OPW) are accepting email applications to the hottest tickets in Ireland; click here for details.
The passage and chamber at Newgrange is low and narrow and maybe not suitable for visitors with claustrophobia or mobility issues – please contact us in advance if you have any concerns.
There is no access to the passages and chambers at Knowth on either tour option.
The monuments are outdoor sites with no shelter, please dress appropriately for the weather.
Photographic is not permitted in the passage or chamber at Newgrange
Permit is required for commercial filming/photography.
Large bags are not permitted inside Newgrange; visitors will be asked to leave them in the secure containers provided while they are in the chamber.
Newgrange (c 3,200 B.C.) is the best-known monument of the World Heritage Site of Brú na Bóinne, predating the ancient pyramids by 400 years and Stonehenge by 1000. The passage tomb is surrounded by 97 kerb stones, the most impressive is the large entrance stone which is covered in swirls and designs. Inside the large mound there is a long passage leading into a chamber which branches off three ways. The corbelled roof inside the burial chamber it still watertight and supports an estimated 200,000 tonnes of cairn. The cremated remains of the dead were laid on large stone basins inside the chamber which usually were accompanied by grave goods.
At dawn on the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year (December 21st), a shaft of sunlight enters the chamber of Newgrange through a specially designed opening over the doorway which illuminates the Chamber. On December 21st 1967, Professor MJ O'Kelly was the first person in modern times to see this now world famous event.
The passage tomb complex lies to the west of Newgrange. The large mound covers two passage tombs placed back to back which is surrounded by 127 massive kerbstones. Outside this large passage tomb there are eighteen small tombs.
Over three hundred decorated stones make up Knowth which represents the greatest concentration of Megalithic art in Western Europe. Recurring motifs on these stones include circles serpentine forms and spirals. One of the most impressive features of Knowth is the corbelled roof in the eastern tomb ascending to a massive height of almost 6m.
Dowth is the least well known of the other two although it compares in size. The mound is surrounded by a kerb of 115 stones and has two tombs facing westwards. On the 21st of December, the rays of the setting sun illuminate this passage and circular manner in manner similar to the winter solstice at Newgrange. At least thirty-eight of the stones at Dowth contain megalithic art, the circle meaning the most common motif used.
There is no access to the interior of the Dowth Mound, but visitors may still walk around the outside and admire the monument and views.
Dowth Winter Solstice Sunset (Photo: Ken Williams, Shadows and Stone Photography)
Listen to some wonderful audio on Brú na Boinne - part of the Boyne Valley Drive
- Café, gift shop/tourist information, picnic area, shuttle buses to Monuments,
- Universal access is limited at the monuments – those who require special assistance or those with mobility issues please contact us in advance of visit
- No pets – guide dogs with ID permitted
- No drones
Brú na Bóinne Visitor Centre,
Fax: +353 (0) 41 982 3071