Quiet Man Country
Visitors with an interest in mythology and prehistory benefit from the region's rich archaeological legacy. One of the main tales of Irish mythology recounts the battle between the Tuatha De Danann and the Fir Bolg for possession of the land. This great battle is said to have taken place in the area; a mile or so up the road from Cong is a stone marker identifying the burial place of one of the battle's fallen leaders.
Just to the west of Cong is anotherand much olderresting
spot: a 6,000-year-old tomb from the Neolithic Age. Other relics from
this age are the stone circles. Like the famous stone circle at Stonehenge,
these date back to pre-Christian times and once functioned as ceremonial
and ritual centres. Several such stone circles still stand around Cong.
Another fascinating structure is the impressive and mysterious stone pyramid
rising out of a field in nearby Neale.
Another phenomenon is the Rising of the Waters which disappear underground some three miles away to the north, suddenly reappearing in Cong Village with great force, where they divide into many streams and flow into the Corrib.
Perhaps the most interesting historical remnant in the village is the ruin of the Royal Abbey of Cong built for the canons regular of the Order of Saint Augustine in 1120 A.D. Built by Turlough Mór OConnor, King of Connacht and High King of Ireland, on the site of a seventh-century foundation by St Fechin. The Abbey, which was endowed and supported by the Royal Families of this era, is considered to be one of the finest examples of early architecture in Ireland, and it was here that Rory OConnor, the last High-King of Ireland, died in 1198. The Abbey was suppressed in the reign of Henry VIII of England.