Right down the road from our cottage outside of Headford, is the village of Cong and a surprising amount of historical sites. Cong is perhaps most famous for the 1952 movie “The Quiet Man” starring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara but we had literally never heard of the film before heading out here! Nonetheless we found the village easily enough a mere 5 minute drive from our cottage and were very glad we did!
“The Quiet Man” seems to dominate this town almost more than the still imposing Abbey and nearby castle grounds. There have to be at least three different buildings in some way devoted to the movie and in a village this size that tends to stand out.
Aside from the movie history all over the town, there are actually a whole lot of things to see. The Abbey grounds are huge and the abbey itself is largely still explorable, though the floors are mostly comprised of hundreds of tombstones so watch your step!
What must have been the front entrance to the Abbey.
There are so many graves. They have even laid some of the headstones down to create paving stones.
The interior of the Abbey’s ruins.
You can’t hold nature back for long here! These cute little ferns are absolutely beautiful growing out of the ruins of the Abbey that had been here in some form since the 6th century. The main attraction for Holli and I was the 12th century abbey and the forest walk from Cong to Clonbur.
Holli and I thought this looked a little like an Ent from the Tolkien series.
These windows weren’t exactly designed to let in a whole bunch of light!
There are still many areas of the ancient Abbey grounds that you can still explore!
Enjoying the gorgeous scenery and the company!
We just love these roses, they are virtually everywhere!
The Cong-Clonbur walk is just gorgeous!
A ruined piece of a wall along the Cong-Clonbur nature walk.
The Cong River begins outside the Abbey and runs directly to the sea.
The woods outside the abbey are beautifully manicured, with a walking path that runs to the next town of Clonbur. The river Cong starts outside the abbey grounds and there is a fishing hut built by the monks that is still there today and in use by the local fishermen.
The Bog Wood Raven is an art piece created for the Abbey using a tree stump which sat in peat for countless years until it was this gorgeous black color.
All in all we were quite impressed with this tiny little paradise sat down a tiny one lane road. It is definitely worth the trip if you are ever in the area!