Emain Macha, Navan Fort

For all those of you who are familiar with Queen MedbCú Chulainn and the other great names in Ulster Mythology ……………  Sorry I’ll start again.

There is a great visitors centre,  Navan Fort, which is built on the site of the ancient capital of Ulster called Emain Macha or modern day Armagh .

I cannot resist a bit of mythology –  The name is derived from the the Celtic meaning Macha’s Twins.  Macha’s husband bet the king of Ulster that his wife could beat the kings chariot horses in a race.  Despite being heavily pregnant she succeeded and gave birth to twins on the finishing line. Thus the place was named. There is more to it than this so,  if you are interested, make the trip and learn!

The grandchildren were enthralled by the exhibition which is brought to life by bluetooth or similar earphones with plenty of scope for interaction with the exhibits.

Celtic warriors

Following this they had their faces painted with Celtic symbols before making the short journey to the Iron age homestead were they were met by the  peasants.

Family life

They were invited inside to sit on the rug strewn floor and to help make butter and grind barley in the traditional manner and learn  what it would have been like to have been an Iron Age child.
After seeing the crops that would have been cultivated and a demonstration of cooking methods it was back to the main centre to indulge in hands on experience in designing and creating a shield .

Arts and crafts

Unfortunately this did not leave time to go to the cinema to watch the docudrama of the history and mythology of Armagh and Ulster.


We saw it with Peter when he was 10 (16 years ago) and it is a great experience so we’ll be back to let them see it at some future time.


An enjoyable afternoon ending with a picnic in the grounds.

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