Older than the Pyramids of Egypt, the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Brú na Bóinne (Newgrange, Knowth and Dowth) is Ireland’s richest archaeological landscape. It is situated right here in the heart of the Boyne Valley, within a bend in the river Boyne. Brú na Bóinne is famous for the spectacular prehistoric passage tombs of Knowth, Newgrange and Dowth which were built circa 3200BC. These Neolithic sites are among the most important in the world and contain the largest collection of megalithic art in Western Europe.
Every year, the winter solstice occurs at Newgrange. An astronomical phenomenon that marks the shortest day and the longest night of the year. At sunrise on the shortest day of the year, for 17 minutes, direct sunlight can enter the Newgrange monument through the specially contrived small opening above the entrance known as the ‘roof box’, to illuminate the Chamber.
A visit to this special place should be on everyone’s bucket list to view first hand the historical landscape in our region. Here are our top tips on how to book your ticket to visit.
1. Check availability before you travel.
During the summer months and school holidays, Brú na Bóinne can be quite busy. Checking available times online is a must before you plan your trip. Pre booking online is not necessary if you just wish to visit the visitor centre and interactive visitor experience. From the 2nd of November, the Knowth tour and exhibition will not be available until spring 2023.
2. Book your tour online
Pre-booking is essential for the Newgrange Tour and exhibition. Log onto https://heritageireland.ie/visit/places-to-visit/bru-na-boinne-visitor-centre-newgrange-and-knowth/ , select the date and time you want to visit, pre pay for your tickets and you are all set to go.
3. Arrive on time at the visitor centre
Brú na Bóinne Visitor Centre is the starting point for all visits to Newgrange. If you go directly to the sites, you will not gain access. The time you select on your ticket is the time you should arrive at the visitor centre so you can enjoy some time at the interactive visitor experience. You will then be taken by shuttle bus to the sites.
4. Take note of the opening hours
Opening hours change at Brú na Bóinne depending on the time of year.
- August 9:00 – 17:45
- September 9:00 – 17:15
- October 9:30 – 16:45
- November 9:00 – 16:15
- December 9:00 – 16:15
During the winter solstice, (18 – 23 December)- regular tour options will be suspended.
5. Spend some time at Brambles café.
If you are hoping to get a bite to eat or enjoy a coffee during your visit, then you will be spoiled for choice at Brambles café situated in the visitor centre. Leave enough time if you want to get something to eat at the end of your tour.
If you have every wondered how to book a ticket for Newgrange, now you know. With a bit of planning you can make some amazing memories at the jewel in the crown of the Boyne Valley!
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