Western Stone Forts
Western Stone Forts is part of the Tentative list of Ireland in order to qualify for inclusion in the World Heritage List.
Click here for a short description of the site, as delivered by the state party.
- ●● Tentative
The coordinates shown for all tentative sites were produced as a community effort. They are not official and may change on inscription.
The UNESCO website is not particularly clear on which sites are incorporated by this proposal. Only Dún Aengus (on the Aran Islands) is specifically mentioned.
I visited Staigue Fort in Western Kerry in February 2009. It was a great stop on a lovely drive on the Ring of Kerry.
The fort itself was small but very impressive, built of thick dry-stone walls and commanded a nice view of the valley down to the Atlantic. It is circular with a very small entrance at the front and a few stone chambers in the wall. The stones inside of the walls have been piled up to create stairs to enable you to get to the top of the walls. I climbed up and was surprised by how big the drop was on the other side; it certainly would have taken a lot of effort to get inside if it was being defended. The fort was a fair way of the main road and I was the only soul here, apart from one sheep. The out of the way charm of the place made it a worthwhile stop.
I am not sure if these sites would be put forward as the Irish tentative list is pretty old now and nothing much has happened with it for a long time. They could be an interesting addition, similar in character to the Temples of Malta, though nowhere near as old. From what I can gather Dún Aengus is a very impressive site, but perhaps not strong enough to make it on the list by itself. Putting the western stone forts togther seems like a logical way of making it a more viable candidate for inscription.
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- Full name: Western Stone Forts
- Country: Ireland
1992 - Submitted