The Lodge

The Lodge in Killeany is an idyllic location offering accommodation for those who wish to connect with the land and do a personal retreat.

As writing is one of my passions I also enjoy welcoming other writers and artists who wish to work on their projects.

Aside from scheduled Anam Árainn retreats, there is an option for groups of four or more to request a tailor made retreat. These retreats typically include yoga, meditation and ceremony at some of Árainn’s sacred sites. Writer’s retreats can also be facilitated.

A bit about the history of the Lodge

Located in KiIleany, the Lodge was built in the 1750’s during the time of British rule. This former landlord’s house has since been transformed and is now a retreat house and a place where pilgrims can come to restore and recharge and be inspired by the song of the ocean.The village of Kileaney gets its name from Cill (church) and Éinne (Enda) and is where Saint Enda set up the first monastic settlement around 484.

At the foot of the hill where The Lodge is situated is the bottom section of a 10th century round tower and an ancient village well. The 4,000 year old cliff fort of Dún Dúchathair is a 40 minute walk away while the more recent Teampeall Benán that was built in the 8th century sits on the crest of the adjacent hill.

According to folklore, Enda, who was a warrior king of Oriel in Ulster was converted to Christianity by his sister Fanchea. He went on to become one of the major Saints of Celtic Christianity and is remembered as being the founder of the Celtic monastic movement. Enda is one of the many Irish saints to have been connected to Árainn, which is also known as Ára na Naomh, Aran of the Saints. Many of the leading figures of the monastic movement spent time here. It was from Árainn that the monastic movement spread to Ireland and then Britain and Europe.

And yet the land surrounding The Lodge reminds that Enda himself was a blow in. Beyond the stone wall in my back garden is a Neolithic standing stone that today shares its field with a herd of black cows and a warren of rabbits.

At the time of Enda’s arrival in the 5th century this island was still inhabited by the Fir Bolg. While Enda’s arrival brought a new way of life, this elder race lives on in Árainn’s landscape and numerous sacred sites.

The reign of the Fir Bolg ended when the Tuatha De Danann arrived in Éiriú and overthrew them in the battle of Moytura in 3033 BC. However the Fir Bolg later returned under a king named Aengus, and were given the Aran Islands and the surrounding coastline as a place of settlement.

Islanders still speak of Hy-Brasil, an island off the coast of Árainn, which was clouded in mist and could only be seen one day every seven years. Hy-brasil was a land where an advanced civilisation lived similar to Tír na n-Óg which translates as the land of eternal youth, also located off Árainn. Hy-brasil’s location in the Atlantic to the north west of Árainn was noted on maps as late as 1325.

It is believed that the Fir Bolg created one of the most spectacular cliff forts in the world Dún Aonghusa on Árainn, which dates back to at least 1500 BC. Every year thousands of pilgrims crawl on their bellies to look over the edge to the Atlantic ocean churning 300 feet below. An auspicious power place to travel to, to be in ceremony with our ancestors.