The town land of Ardmulchan hugs one of the most beautiful bends on the River Boyne between Navan and Slane. For the most part the area was retained by Hugh de Lacy until sometime at the end of the 12th century. This was at a time when defense of the Boyne was vital to the establishment of the Norman colony in Meath. A substantial motte was built, along with a church and several chapels rebuilt on pre Norman foundations. The church tower may be as early as 13th or 14th century. The present ruins of the church seem to be 15th century.
The ruins of Ardmulchan Church and Graveyard lie on an elevated site overlooking the River Boyne. The Church's remains include, at the west end, a handsome square bell tower. The tower's ground floor is almost intact, vaulted with a stairway. Very little else of the original building remains but the site offers breath-taking views of the Boyne's historical landscape.
The ruins of Dunmoe Castle (above), the round tower at Donaghmore and the belfry of Slane Abbey are all visible here, set in the gently sloping, fertile green fields of the Boyne Valley. For a riverside view of Ardmulchan take a short walk along the Ramparts of the Boyne from Stackallen Bridge. On a sunny day the reflections in the river look like flecks of silver. As you reach the ruins of Ardmulchan Church and Dunmoe Castle you'll discover Ardmulchan Castle (private), a mansion built by a Scot in the years 1902-4. It's a haunting red brick building with an impressive set of steps leading from the house down to the canal's edge.
Listen to some wonderful audio on Ardmulchan Church - Part of the Boyne Valley Drive:
Boyne Rd, Navan, Co. Meath
Take the R153 (turning right over the bridge if heading northbound towards Cavan) for Duleek/Ashbourne. Take a slight left at the first junction for the Boyne Rd. Continue on the Boyne Rd for about 3km, you will see signs on the left for Ardmulchan.
Take the M3 (this road is tolled) headed for Cavan. At junction 8, exit toward R147/Navan (South). Merge onto Navan (South). Turn left onto R147. Turn right onto the R153 for Duleek/Ashbourne. Take a slight left at the first junction for the Boyne Rd. Continue on the Boyne Rd for about 3km, you will see signs on the left for Ardmulchan.
Via M1 Motorway or Drogheda:
From the M1 (this road is tolled) coming from Belfast, take the exit for junction 10, take the N51 exit to Slane/Drogheda North. At the roundabout, take the 3rd exit onto N51 headed for Slane. If coming from Drogheda take the N51 headed towards Slane also. In Slane take a left on the N2 towards Dublin. About 2km outside Slane turn right onto L1600 for Trim/Navan. Continue straight down this road for 6 km until you see the signs for Ardmulchan on the right.