Holy Cross Abbey

The pretty village of Holycross, with its thatched cottages, eight-arch stone bridge across the River Suir, and village green dotted with ducks, is 15km north of Cashel. Its magnificently restored Cistercian abbey, founded in 1168, proudly displays two relics of the True Cross, and Ireland's only intact medieval chapter-house doorway. Look for the ornately carved sedilia near the altar and pause to appreciate the early form of ‘stadium seating’. Phone ahead to book a tour.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby attractions

1. Brú Ború

8.22 MILES

This privately run cultural centre is next to the car park below the Rock of Cashel, and offers absorbing insights into Irish traditional music, dance and…

2. Rock of Cashel

8.31 MILES

The Rock of Cashel is one of Ireland's most spectacular historic sites: a prominent green hill, banded with limestone outcrops, rising from a grassy plain…

3. Hore Abbey

8.44 MILES

The formidable ruin of 13th-century Hore Abbey (also known as Hoare Abbey or St Mary's) stands in flat farmland 1km west of the Rock of Cashel. Originally…

4. Cashel Folk Village

8.46 MILES

An engaging exhibition of old buildings, shopfronts and memorabilia from around the town. It's all a bit amateurish and slipshod, but in a charming, heart…

5. Cashel Heritage Centre


Located in the town hall alongside the tourist office, the displays here include a scale model of Cashel in the 1640s with an audio commentary.

6. Athassel Priory

12.11 MILES

Reached over a stile and across grassy (sometimes muddy) fields, the atmospheric ruins of Athassel Priory sit in the shallow and verdant River Suir Valley…

7. Fethard Horse Country Experience

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Housed in Fethard's 17th-century Tholsel (town hall), this museum traces the role of the horse in Irish history and culture, from military steeds and…

8. Holy Trinity Church

14.06 MILES

This church and churchyard occupy a captivating time warp. The main part of the building dates from the 13th century, though its ancient walls have been…