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Witness the Phenomenon of the Winter Solstice Live @ YouTube

Witness the Phenomenon of the Winter Solstice in Ireland’s Ancient East Live on YouTube

Ireland celebrates the 50th anniversary of the rediscovery of the oldest known winter solstice phenomenon in the world, at Newgrange, Co. Meath. Located some 50 km from Dublin, Newgrange is the largest in a group of Neolithic passage graves in Brú na Bóinne, an area located around the Boyne Valley.

Exactly 50 years ago, on the 21st of December 1967, standing in the inner sanctum of the Newgrange passage tomb, Irish archaeologist Dr Michael J. O’Kelly watched as a shaft of pale winter sunlight shone through the roof box over the main entrance, crept along the passage and bathed the chamber in a mystical golden glow. It was the first winter solstice witnessed at Newgrange by anyone in over 5,000 years.

As the sun rises higher, the beam slowly creeps along the floor of the 19-metre passage tomb and then widens within the central chamber so that the whole room becomes dramatically illuminated, revealing the ancient stone carvings inside. This event lasts for 17 minutes, beginning around 9am. The passage tombs of the Boyne Valley are renowned for their abundance of rock art and have the largest concentration of megalithic art in Europe.

Newgrange’s accuracy as a time-telling device is remarkable when one considers that it was built 500 years before the Great Pyramid in Egypt, and more than 1,000 years before Stonehenge in England. The intent of its builders was undoubtedly to mark the beginning of the New Year. In addition, it may have served as a powerful symbol of the victory of life over death.

Be there, wherever you are!

This year to mark the 50th anniversary of the rediscovery of the Winter Solstice phenomenon at Newgrange, Tourism Ireland is hosting a live stream of the event on to share this ancient spectacle internationally. There will be a festival atmosphere taking place outside the monument on the morning December 21st, but a fortunate few have been selected from the international lottery draw to enter the Newgrange and witness the event in person.

Newgrange is the jewel in the crown of a region Tourism Ireland promotes as Ireland’s Ancient East, an area with a rich history stretching back 5,000 years, where every cairn has a story, every castle turret has a tale, and every hill may hide a heroic saga.

Don’t forget to tune into our live stream on YouTube at 8.30am GMT on 20th and 21st December.


太陽の高度があがるにつれ、光線の先端が19メートルの羨道墳の床をゆっくりと奥へと差し込んでいき、 やがて玄室で広がって部屋全体を劇的に照らし出すと、室内にある古代の石の彫刻が浮かび上がります。この現象は朝の9時ごろに始まって、17分間続きます。ブルー・ナ・ボーニャの数々の羨道墳は豊富な岩絵で知られ、欧州最大の巨石芸術の集積地になっています。




ニューグレンジは、アイルランド政府観光庁が「アイルランドいにしえの東部(Ireland’s Ancient East)」として振興している地域の中心となる遺跡で、ユネスコ世界遺産に登録されています。この地域には5,000年前の豊かな歴史が息づき、ひとつひとつの石塚に物語があり、城郭のひとつひとつの小塔にも伝説があり、ひとつひとつの丘に英雄の冒険譚が隠されているかもしれません。

アイルランド観光庁公式サイト 「アイルランドいにしえの東部」