Slane Abbey Ruins

Looking up the hill at the ruins

The Hill of Slane towers 158 metres (521ft) above the surrounding landscape. On one side of the hill is a ring structure and mound, the other the remains of a monestary which was in use between 1100 – 1750’s. The cemetery remains in use today.


In ancient mythology, the Fir Bolg king Sláine (Slane) was said to have been buried here. In Christian history the hill became established as the place where St. Patrick lit the first paschal fire in 443 AD in direct defiance of the High King Logaire who forbid any other fires while a festival fire was burning on the Hill of Tara.

St Patrick statue at Abbey ruins

According to legend, Logaire was so impressed by Patricks devotion that, he allowed St. Patrick to continue his missionary work in Ireland. It is somewhat more certain that Patrick appointed a bishop of Slane, Saint Erc on this location around 435 AD.

Hill of Slane Abbey Panorama

On a clear day, from Slane hill you can see the mounds of New Grange and Knowth, with the town of Drogheda and the Irish Sea beyond.

View out the window

To the North the view extends as far as Slieve Gullion (well into Northern Ireland), and to the South as far as the Sugarloaf Mountain in Wicklow.

Abbey and Castle ruins hill of slane

More photos from the full set are up on flickr.