The Blacklion Village Trail, also known as the Cathal Buí Trail is a perfect spot for some family time. Here, you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy the wonderful ancient village of Blacklion and learn about the fascinating character, Cathal Buí.
Facilities: Car parking, interpretation, Tourist Information Centre.
Blacklion Village Trail (Cathal Buí Trail)
The Cathal Buí Trail is a circular flat trail that leads you on a 30 minute 1km walk. On the walk you’ll have the opportunity to read various information panels, discovering the history and stories of the local village and the charismatic character, Cathal Buí.
Cathal Buí Mac Giolla Ghunna (Gaelic Poet circa 1680 – 1756) came from the West Bréifne area. He reputedly studied on the continent for the priesthood – but gave up his studies when he met a young woman called Kathleen Tyrell – ‘Ceataí na gCiabh’. When she rejected him, he spent the rest of his life wandering from fair to market across south Ulster. One of his most plaintive love poems is dedicated to Ceataí. He had the reputation of being a great drinker and a great ‘womaniser’. The clergy did not like him as he was deemed a bad influence.
He composed many poems and beautiful songs. Most of them were love songs, as he was quite the romantic! They are still sung in Gaeltacht areas today. His best known poem/song is ‘An Bonnán Buí’ – (The Yellow Bittern). It laments the death of a bird that could not get a drink because Lough MacNean was frozen over. Cathal was known to have said that he had no intention of dying for want of a drink. Cathal died in 1756 and is said to be buried in Donaghmoyne old graveyard in County Monaghan.
In the 1950s the Blacklion village name plate read Learga. This was the name by which local older generation people would have called the place – colloquially called Leargy. Learga is the plural of an Irish word Learg meaning rising ground, slopes, or mountain side. This description would connect with the topographical location of the village, which sits below steeply rising ground and hills. Today, Learga no longer appears on the village signs, which now show An Blaic. The village is generally referred to by local residents as ‘The Black’.
Lough MacNean is a large freshwater lake divided into two parts.
This cave is an excellent example of the hundreds of kilometres of cave system...
From here you will be able to see Upper and Lower Lough MacNean, the village of ...
Theremains of three stone Cashels, one of which has been described as 'the fines...
A mythical, spiritual landscape of monuments, megalithic tombs, hut sites and pr...
The narrow-steep sided gorge of the Cladagh Glen is one of the most picturesque ...
Visitors are guided through a fascinating natural underworld of rivers, waterfal...
The trail meanders along a farmland track, through one of the largest expanses o...
Distances are from Blacklion Village Trail (Cathal Buí Trail)