During Day 3 a slight detour after lunch took us to the ruins of Rosserk Friary on the edge of the estuary of the river Moy, famed for its salmon. We braved about 5km of a road just wide enough for one vehicle, a bit hair-raising at times with blind corners and a few large tractors coming the other way – this is quite typical of many rural Irish roads, by the way – but it was worth it to get to these well-preserved ruins in their tranquil setting.
Created by the Joyce family in the early 15th century, this Friary was perhaps unusual in that it allowed married couples to be part of the community. Access to the upper floor is still available, giving a good view over the water.
The Friary was deliberately destroyed by fire in the reign of Elizabeth I who was continuing with Henry VIII’s policy of abolishing all Catholic monasteries. The destruction continues today – at least, of the peace and quiet, as a group of three tourists arrived. With loud incessant voices they trumpeted their way around the site (yes, there is a clue there as to their nationality) taking selfies and generally yahooing. Luckily we had pretty much finished our visit by the time they arrived.